Outdoors Notebook: Ontario, Wayne counties legalize big-game rifle hunting – Gov. Andrew Cuomo has signed legislation legalizing rifle hunting for big game (deer and black bear) in Ontario and Wayne counties, adding to a growing list. Of approximately 30 counties in western and central New York, only nine remain that ban the use of rifles, including Monroe, Orleans, Genesee and Livingston. A proposal to include Livingston failed again, but now that it’s sandwiched between Wyoming and Ontario, it will likely pass in the future. Rifle cartridges travel farther than shotgun slugs, so allowing rifle use for hunting has long been a controversial topic. But rifle users tend to be more safety conscious, proponents note, and statistics in counties where use of rifles was allowed on a trial basis showed no increase in accidents.