HELENA — The House has endorsed a bill that would allow Montana hunters to use silencers on their guns.
House Bill 174 sponsored by Republican Rep. Krayton Kerns of Laurel would repeal a law that prohibits the use of silencers.
Supporters said the bill is about preventing hearing loss and reducing the noise of guns slightly.
Democratic Rep. Mike Menahan of Helena opposed the bill. He says silencers would negatively change the face of hunting in Montana and could be abused by poachers.
Rep. Wendy Warburton, R-Havre and Rep. Kris Hansen, R-Havre, voted yes. Rep. Tony Belcourt, D-Box Elder, voted no.
The bill passed Thursday 72 to 28. The bill faces one more largely procedural vote before being moved to the Senate.
Kerns' House Bill 384, which would allow concealed weapons into now-prohibited places passed a final vote and will go to the Senate.