East Lansing City Council decides not to put a deer cull vote on the ballot

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Courtesy: Michigan Department of Natural Resources

East Lansing, Mich. (WLNS) — For years East Lansing has faced issues surrounding overpopulation of deer in the city.

At its meeting on Jan. 7th, the city council discussed the idea of a deer cull to help manage deer numbers. The topic was brought up again Tuesday night.

Councilmember Lisa Babcock said there has been extremely mixed feedback from the community regarding a deer cull. While some feel strongly that the council needs to handle the deer problem, others believe people should adapt to nature and not the other way around.

Despite opposing opinions from the public, Babcock said there does seem to be one thing most people agree on.

“I got a bunch of emails in the past week. Some were in favor of culling deer and others were strongly opposed to it, but the common denominator was it’s up to the city council to decide. That it was really, in the public’s view, a weak maneuver for the city council to ask the public to decide,” Babcock told 6 News after Tuesday night’s meeting.

Beth Ripley attended the council meeting and while she realizes there are a lot of deer in the area, she personally doesn’t have an issue with them.

“I enjoy the deer and all the wildlife that we have behind us and I kind of figured they were there first. I think I have concerns about… or more questions. I don’t want the deer to disappear you know, they’re part of the neighborhood,” Ripley said.

Instead of putting the issue on the August ballot for a vote, the council is now asking people to attend its next meeting on Feb. 11 to share their thoughts on how East Lansing should handle the deer population.

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