OGDEN DUNES | The Indiana Department of Natural Resources will hold a prehearing conference Thursday regarding the town's efforts to carry out a deer cull.
The conference is scheduled for 9 a.m. Thursday at the DNR's Lake Michigan headquarters in Michigan City. The purpose of the conference is to give a chance for the parties to settle their differences and to prepare for additional hearings if a settlement is not reached.
The town was granted a permit by the DNR on Nov. 8 to conduct a deer cull on three sites within the town between Nov. 26 and Feb. 28, 2013. Using sharpshooters, the town's goal was to cull 40 deer from within the town's limits.
However, on Nov. 20, a petition signed by more than 20 town residents requested that the DNR review the permit and issue a stay on the cull. The residents contend that the permit "was issued based on erroneous statements of fact regarding the existence of certain conditions to the presence of deer" within the town.
The review was granted Nov. 26. The DNR set the hearing for Thursday and issued a stay until Dec. 11.
This is the second year the town has sought and received a permit to cull deer. Last year 17 deer were taken before the cull ended.