Yesterday the Senate Committee on Environment and Natural Resources held hearings on S 301, which was introduced by Senator Carolyn McGinn, R-Sedgwick to require those who hold themselves out as outfitters and guides to register with the KDWP&T. She is frustrated with people seeking hunting privileges on her property without a way to confirm whether they are simply seeking access as an individual or guiding for pay for other parties, among other concerns.
At the hearing, Keaton Kelso appeared on behalf of his Kansas Outfitters Association and tried to hijack the bill into becoming an outfitter license. We have seen this before... his legislation would effectively put most of the smaller players out of business, creating more for he and his nine members... and most likely lowering his land lease costs. The committee did not seem interested.
Rep. Ken Corbet appeared in opposition and noted the legislation was not necessary... the landowner is the ultimate gatekeeper to access.
I have met with Senator McGinn on this bill several times and provided information on disclosure forms and land leases by the day, season, year and etc.
Senator McGinn indicated it was not her desire to include CSA operators, but the bill likely would impact CSA's. I provided her with a possible amendment and shared it with the Committee Revisor (attorney) and asked for its inclusion should the bill move forward. We do not believe it will, or if it does the amendment will be added. I doubt the House would be interested in the bill should it advance.
Attached is a copy of the latest transferrable deer bill, HB 2743. Mike Beam with the Kansas Livestock Association requested introduction and we could see a hearing as early as next week.
Hearings were held before the House Agriculture Committee yesterday on HB 2558, the bill we requested introduction of to extend the CSA season from March 31 to April 30. Secretary Jennison from WP&T appeared neutral on the bill and indicated the Department did not have concerns. I appeared as the lead proponent (see attached testimony). Following the hearing, the bill was advanced to the floor to the Consent Calendar, meaning it was considered noncontroversial. Rarely does a committee act on a bill the day it is heard, so this is a very positive sign. If no one from the House objects to the bill being on the Consent Calendar for three days, it is simply advanced to Final Action without floor debate.
That's the report from Topeka.
Whitney B. Damron, P.A.
919 South Kansas Avenue
Topeka, Kansas 66612-1210
(785) 354-1354 (O) - (785) 224-6666 (M)