On March 13, the state House Game, Fish and Parks Committee held a hearing on Senate Bill 301. While no vote was taken on this legislation, multiple testimonies were given in support of hunting with suppressors in Georgia. State Senator John Bulloch (R-11), sponsor of SB 301, was the first to speak on behalf of this bill and used personal experiences to advocate for hunting with suppressors. Also, giving favorable testimonies were state Representative Chuck Williams (R-113), who spoke as a citizen; Kevin Brittingham, formerly of Advanced Armament Corporation; and Knox Williams of the American Silencer Association. SB 301 would allow hunters in Georgia to use lawfully-possessed suppressors (also referred to as silencers) on firearms for hunting.
In order to acquire a suppressor, a purchaser must submit the appropriate paperwork to the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives where long wait times for approval are unfortunately common (four to six months), undergo a background check by the FBI, find a licensed dealer authorized to conduct the transaction and pay a one-time $200 tax for each device. While suppressors do not eliminate the sound of a firearm, they do reduce the muzzle report in a manner similar to the way that a muffler reduces exhaust noise from a vehicle. The benefits associated with suppressor use include increased accuracy due to reduced recoil and muzzle blast, protection from hearing damage and reduced noise pollution.