Legislative Update Report

KANSAS DEPARTMENT OF WILDLIFE, PARKS AND TOURISM

This report will be updated regularly with bills in the 2017 Kansas Legislature that potentially affect the Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism (KDWPT). If KDWPT has provided testimony on the bill, the bill summary includes the Department's position as of the date of this report.

SB = Senate Bills

HB = House Bills

The latest information update for each bill is shown in bold.

The full text of a bill may be obtained online at the Kansas Legislature's website.

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Updated May 4, 2017

Legislative Update

2017 Bills

SB24 – This bill would designate the channel catfish as the state fish of Kansas.

SB25 – This bill would remove the requirement for a public hearing to set rental fees for cabins owned or operated by the Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism. This bill passed the Senate 26-14 and was referred to the House Committee on Agriculture before being referred to the Committee on Commerce, Labor and Economic Development. This bill was tabled in committee.

SB26 – This bill would increase the cap on the vessel registration fee. This bill passed on Senate Final Action 36-4. It was referred to the House Committee on Transportation. This bill was signed by the Governor on April 5, 2017.

SB77 – This bill would name the bison herd kept on the Mined Land Wildlife Area in Crawford County, the "Bob Grant Bison Herd," in memory of Grant, who served 20 years in the Kansas Legislature.This bill had a hearing on January 31, 2017 and has been placed on the Consent Calendar.

SB162 - This bill would amend the statutes concerning dangerous regulated animals, adding nonhuman primates and wolves (excluding hybrids) to the list. It would also remove the grandfather clauses, which allowed persons in possession of such animals before the original law went into effect to keep them. And the proposed amendment would prohibit any dangerous regulated animals to be in proximity to members of the public, no matter the size of the animal. This bill was referred to the Committee on Agriculture and Natural Resources.

SB240 -- This bill authorizes the Department of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism to purchase a tract of land in Sherman County from Pheasants Forever. The land is adjacent to the Sherman County Wildlife Area and would be managed as a public hunting area. The bill had a hearing on April 4, 2017 and was recommended to be passed by the Committee on Ways and Means. It is on Senate General Orders.

HB2068 – This bill deals with Child Support orders and registration of vehicles and vessels. This bill had a hearing on February 9, 2017.

HB2098 – This bill would name the bison herd in Crawford County, the "Bob Grant Bison Herd," a companion bill to SB77.This bill had a hearing on January 26, 2017 and passed the House 115-0. The bill passed the Senate 39-0 and awaits the Governor's Signature.

HB2191 –  This bill relates to licenses, permits, stamps and other issuances of the Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism and would amend wording to clarify that if a license or permit is suspended, only a physical license would have to be surrendered. This bill passed the House 122-0 and was referred to the Senate Committee on Agriculture and Natural Resources.This bill passed the Senate 40-0 and is enrolled to signed by the Governor. This bill was signed by the Governor on April 7, 2017.

HB2192 – This bill would rename Lake Scott State Park to Historic Lake Scott State Park in recognition of the significant history of the property.This bill had a hearing on January 31,  2017. This bill passed the House 122-0 and was referred to the Senate Committee on Agriculture and Natural Resources. This bill was signed by the Governor on March 28, 2017.

HB2193 – This bill would require anyone born on or after January 1, 1997 to complete an approved Boating Safety course before operating a motorboat or sailboat on public waters. The current law requires those born on or after January 1, 1989 to complete an approved Boater Safety course, but it doesn't apply to anyone 21 or older. This bill had a hearing on January 31,  2017.

HB2199 – This bill would authorize the board of county commissioners of any county to regulate conservation easements on property located within the county.

HB2207 – This bill would require anyone hunting, shooting, fishing, furharvesting or pursing any bird or animal on private land to have written permission from the owner or person in possession of such land or body of water. It would also prohibit any person from pursuing a wounded bird or animal on private land without written permission. This bill had a hearing on February 15, 2017. The House Committee on Agriculture passed a substitute bill that  would delete language in the current statute allowing licensed hunters to pursue wounded game on land without landowner permission. The requirement for written permission by anyone hunting, shooting, fishing or trapping on private land was not included in the substitute bill. 

HB2208 – This bill would establish a transferable regular landowner or tenant hunt-on-your-own-land big game permit, which could be transferred to a nonresident solely for the purpose of hunting white-tailed deer. This bill had a hearing on February 14, 2017.

HB2276 This is the companion bill to SB162 concerning dangerous regulated animals. This bill was referred to the House Committee on Federal and State Affairs. This bill had a hearing scheduled for March 22, 2017.

HB2363 – This bill concerns the disposition of state surplus real property; authorizing the Department of Administration on behalf of various state agencies to sell certain real property. The list of properties includes public lands owned by the Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism. This bill was referred to the House Committee on Appropriations.

HB2407 – This bill would require prior consent of the Secretary of Administration and the Attorney General before any land could be transferred to the State of Kansas through any probate proceeding. The provisions of SB240, which authorizes the Department of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism to purchase a tract of land in Sherman County from Pheasants Forever, was amended into this bill. The bill, as amended, passed out of the Senate Committee on Ways and Means on May 4, 2017, and is on Senate General Orders.