H.B. 2868 would repeal language in existing law which sets the conditions under which nonresident deer permits may be issued. That current restriction only allows the issuance of nonresident deer permits if resident firearm permits of a particular type remained unissued after the close of the previous years's first permit selection process in a particular management area. The effect of the elimination of this language would be to give the Secretary of Wildlife and Parks greater discretion to determine on a year-to-year basis whether nonresident permits would be allowed. New language in the bill would continue the policy of basing the number of nonresident deer firearm permits and nonresident archery permits of each type on the number of resident deer firearm or archery permits for a season by rules and regulations.
Since resident archery permits are issued on a statewide basis for any type of deer, the bill would give the Secretary the discretion to restrict nonresident deer archery permits to a particular deer species without regard to resident deer archery permit species restrictions, or the lack thereof.
The bill would give new authority to the Secretary to authorize the issuance of an unlimited number of deer tags in a management unit to nonresidents, if there is a management unit where there are an unlimited number of game tags available to residents. The Secretary would be required to authorize this activity through rules and regulations.
The bill also would increase the percentage of acreage in a county which the Secretary of the Department of Wildlife and Parks could license as a controlled shooting area. The bill would increase the percentage from the current 2 percent to 3 percent.
The bill would be effective upon publication in the Kansas Register.
Proponents of the bill included representatives of the following entities: the Kansas Department of Wildlife and Parks, the Kansas Livestock Association, the Kansas Outfitters Association, the Kansas Wildlife Federation, the Kansas Farm Bureau, and the Travel Industry Association of Kansas. An individual from Sedan also appeared as a proponent. The opponent to the bill was a spokesperson from the Kansas Bowhunter's Association. The spokesperson for the Kansas Department of Wildlife and Parks stated that the bill would provide increased opportunity and flexibility in the issuance of nonresident deer permits and that the agency did not believe that the proposed changes would negatively affect resident hunting opportunities in Kansas.
The fiscal note states that the Kansas Department of Wildlife and Parks anticipates that the less restrictive provisions proposed by the bill would increase Wildlife Fee Funds receipts from firearm and archery permits by between $64,650 and $78,650, because the bill allows the Department to issue permits that would otherwise be unavailable to nonresidents.
The Senate Committee of the Whole amended the provisions of H.B. 2499 relating to controlled shooting areas into the bill.
1. *Supplemental notes are prepared by the Legislative Research Department and do not express legislative intent. The supplemental note and fiscal note for this bill may be accessed on the Internet at http://www.ink.org/public/legislative/fulltext-bill.html.