The legalizing of crossbows for all was expected to become law, the only question was whether Gov. Bruce Rauner would sign it or it would simply become law in time for the Oct. 1 opener of the archery seasons.

On Monday, it was announced that Gov. Rauner had signed HB 2893.

Here is the announcement from the Illinois Department of Natural Resources.

New State Law Allows All Hunters in Illinois to Use Crossbows During Archery Seasons

SPRINGFIELD, IL – Hunters in Illinois may use crossbows during archery hunting seasons, including the Illinois Archery Deer Season and the Illinois Fall Turkey Archery Season beginning on Oct. 1.

Governor Bruce Rauner signed into law House Bill 2893, which amended the Illinois Wildlife Code to repeal restrictions on the use of crossbows during archery hunting seasons in Illinois.

Illinois law previously allowed the use of crossbows for archery hunting by persons age 62 or older, and those persons with disabilities who qualified for a crossbow permit issued by the Illinois Department of Natural Resources (IDNR).  In addition, the previous law allowed certain youth hunters to use crossbows, and allowed all archery hunters to use crossbows beginning the Monday after the second firearm deer season.

The 2017-18 season dates for archery deer and fall turkey archery hunting in Illinois are Oct. 1, 2017 through Jan. 14, 2018.  Archery seasons will be closed Nov. 17-19 and Nov. 30-Dec. 3 during the Firearm Deer Season in those counties open to firearm deer hunting.