OGDEN DUNES | A hearing scheduled for Friday regarding the permit for the town's deer cull has been canceled.
Steven Lucas, administrative law judge for the Natural Resources Commission, issued a statement Thursday morning that he has canceled the meeting scheduled to be held at Prophetstown State Park in Lafayette.
According to the statement, the hearing was canceled after the town reported it had killed 40 deer since the cull began, the maximum number under its permit. Residents who had filed for a review of the permit also had filed a request for the postponement of the stay hearing Thursday morning, citing impending inclement weather conditions that could make traveling to the state park hazardous.
The Indiana Department of Natural Resources agreed, citing the weather and the fact that the maximum number of deer had been taken under the permit, would make the hearing moot.
The town received a permit from the DNR in November. A group of about 20 residents filed a petition to the NRC asking for a review of that permit. The cull initially had been stayed until Dec. 11, with a preconference hearing held on the matter. After that hearing, Lucas set a full hearing for Dec. 21.
Residents also had asked the temporary stay on the cull be extended to the hearing date. Lucas denied that request.
The town, using two sharpshooters in three areas of the community, began the cull last week. It was reported that the town had completed the hunting late Wednesday afternoon.
Lucas did set a telephone status conference for Jan. 14 to determine to what extent the issue is moot, whether anyone wants to proceed with a hearing and, if they do, when that hearing would be held.