SPRINGFIELD — Illinoisans would be allowed to sport-fish with a device known as a "sling shot bow" under legislation approved by a Senate committee Tuesday.
The device is manufactured in Tuscola by the Central Illinois Tribal Council, according to John Huffer, who described himself as chief of the tribe.
The sling bow, which Huffer said he sells for about $90, is used to spear so-called "trash fish," such as carp, suckers, shad, buffalo and gar. Huffer said the device is legal to use in 30 states, although not Illinois.
As amended, the legislation (SB 1538), which is sponsored by Sen. Chapin Rose, R-Mahomet, and was approved 9-0, would not permit hunting with a sling bow.
The committee also approved legislation and a resolution, both sponsored by Sen. Mike Frerichs, D-Champaign, that would encourage municipalities to treat ash trees rather than cut them down when threatened with the emerald ash borer.
Under the legislation (SB 1589), cities and villages would be allowed to either treat the trees or cut them down, using money from a state revolving fund under the Illinois Finance Authority.
Jeff Dixon, a lobbyist for the firm Arborjet Inc., said that research by the University of Illinois and Purdue University showed that injecting a chemical into a tree's base is 99 percent effective in killing ash borers for up to five years.
The legislation was approved 9-0 by the committee, as was a resolution urging municipalities to treat trees rather than felling them.