Legislation sportsmen backed as a way to settle an uproar over access to Montana streams was tabled by a House committee Tuesday night. The House Fish, Wildlife and Parks Committee voted 13-6 to table the bill after some Democrats on the panel said amendments made the measure unacceptable. Earlier Tuesday, the bill had supporters, some of them anglers, and critics, some of them landowners, lined up to testify at a committee hearing. The legislation advanced by the Senate followed long-standing arguments about use of fences at bridges and abutments. Landowners say the fencing is necessary to control livestock, but anglers say its real purpose is to control them as they try to reach streams and exercise their rights under Montana’s landmark access law of the 1980s. People on both sides of the issue said Tuesday that legislation, not litigation, is the way to address the issue. But they disagreed on merits of the bill before the committee. The measure’s sponsor, Sen. Lane Larson, D-Billings, called the legislation a “fair and sensible” attempt to resolve the controversy. Opponents said the bill would amount to the taking of private property. “There isn’t time for a subcommittee to try to craft a perfect bill, if there is such a thing,” supporter Robert Throssell of the Montana Wildlife Federation said in an apparent reference to the legislative calendar, which has less than a month remaining. Now is the time for the Legislature to act on the matter, rather than leaving it for court action, Throssell said. Opponents included the Montana Stockgrowers Association, its lawyer-lobbyist parsing the bill and claiming it ultimately would lead to unconstitutional provisions. Stream access would become more difficult, not easier, John Bloomquist said. “The language of the bill doesn’t fit what proponents say the bill does,” Bloomquist told the committee. “All this ... does is create the potential for conflict.” The bill is Senate Bill 78.