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RALEIGH, NC (AP) — A bill to let a western North Carolina community continue use a live possum in its New Year’s Eve celebration is going to Gov. Pat McCrory’s desk.

The General Assembly gave its final approval Thursday to legislation responding to a judge’s ruling that seemed to stop the organizer of the Brasstown Possum Drop from putting the animal in a clear plastic box each Dec. 31. The box is lowered to the ground at midnight.

People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals complained about the event. The bill makes clear the Wildlife Resources Commission can issue permits for such live-animal events.

Sen. Jim Davis of Macon County said the Possum Drop brings thousands to the small town each year.

The Senate gave its final passage by a vote of 41-2.

(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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