The Reston Association has singlehandedly eradicated the scourge of unsightly trailers and boats, prevailed in its attempts to addle goose eggs, and even took on quantum physics as it declared war on darkness. But when it set its sights on bow hunters, it was the RA that wound up in the crosshairs.
Reston Association has been ordered to pay approximately $58,000 to the Archery Trade Association after the Virginia Supreme Court refused to hear the homeowner association’s appeal regarding a bow hunting decision reached at a Fairfax County court last December. The amount will go to recover Archery Trade Association’s court fees.There literally is a trade association for everything in the DC area. Luckily, they were there to protect the rights of several Restonians.
The Archery Trade Association (ATA) supported two Reston Association (RA) members who live on Buckthorn Lane whom the RA denied permission to employ bow hunting services to manage deer populations on their properties in November 2006. "The two landowners who had followed the rules, we felt that they had been wrongly handled," said Jay McAninch, the ATA CEO and president. He added that the individual homeowners were not in position to "challenge the likes of the RA" in the courts, so the ATA stepped in to help.For its part, the RA says it won, too, even though it had to pay the $58,000, which will buy the ATA a lot of... bow strings, and, um, exploding arrow tips and... well, whatever.
Robin Smyers, RA president, said the courts also found that RA has a right to establish its own regulations on the issue. "We had every right to have guidelines and our rules were upheld," said Smyers.Sweet! We're off to Buckthorn Lane, where we'll "grandfather in" a few deer, a squirrel or two, and maybe any fat, slow-moving bugs that happen to get too close!
However, the two landowners had used bow hunting before RA established its regulations regarding the practice. "They were, for lack of a better term, grandfathered in," said Larry Butler, RA’s director of Parks and Recreation, because they were able to prove they had used bow hunting prior to RA’s decision in 2006. The court decision, said Butler, "also validated the [RA] covenants."