Deer control plan gets green light with important restriction

A State Supreme Court judge has cleared the way for the Village of Cayuga Heights to move forward with a plan to control the large deer herd in the village.

Judge Phillip Rumsey has dismissed a lawsuit brought by a number of village residents who sought to block the deer management plan. Among other things they claimed the plan was arbitrary.

Cayuga Heights can now seek state permits to capture and sterilize up to 60 does and kill off the rest of the herd which is estimated at up to 200 deer in a village of just two square miles. The village is located on the outskirts of the City of Ithaca in Tompkins County.

The judge did reject a controversial method of killing the animals in which deer are captured in a net and killed with a bolt to the head. The lawyer for the 12 residents who brought the suit, Art Giacalone called it a "disappointing decision." He added, "The silver lining is... the village can't use the net and bolt technique."

Giacolone says he will meet with his clients to decide whether to appeal the decision.

Click here to download and read the text of the judge's ruling.