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Right to Hunt and Fish Amendment Heads to State Ballot

Thursday, March 17, 2016

Fairfax, Va. – Kansas state senators today voted overwhelmingly to support a resolution backed by the National Rifle Association that seeks to amend the state constitution to protect the right to hunt, fish and trap. The passage of House Concurrent Resolution 5008 means voters will have a chance to amend the constitution with a statewide ballot initiative this November. HCR 5008 passed the Senate without opposition. It passed the House by a vote of 117 to 7.

 “Hunting, fishing, and trapping are not only cherished Kansas traditions, but paired with science, they are the key to wildlife management and conservation,” said Chris W. Cox, executive director of the National Rifle Association’s Institute for Legislative Action. “Unfortunately, misguided extremists have been trying for decades to ban our outdoor traditions either outright or incrementally. Amending the constitution is the best way for Kansans to protect themselves from the extreme political agenda of animal rights groups.” 

 Background:  

  • From 1994 to 2001 animal rights advocates achieved bans on trapping in Arizona, California, Colorado, Massachusetts and Washington.
  • A 1990 ballot initiative in California resulted in a ban on mountain lion hunting. 
  • The idea of a state constitutional amendment is nothing new. Vermont’s dates back to 1777.
  • Today 19 states have an amendment protecting these basic rights.

  Hunting and Fishing Economic and Conservation Impact: 

  •  Hunting is a part of Kansas’ cultural heritage, an important wildlife management tool, and an important part of our economy.
  •  According to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, about 1.2 million people hunt, fish or watch wildlife in Kansas in a given year. They spend about $906 million on their trips and equipment. The Kansas  Department of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism sold more than $24.5 million in licenses and permits last year. The state puts all that money into wildlife conservation programs throughout Kansas.
  •  Kansas gets additional money each year for conservation programs from a federal excise tax. Since 1937, hunters and outdoorsmen have contributed more than 7.2 billion dollars to a variety of wildlife  and wildlife habitat conservation programs, through Pittman-Robertson Act revenues associated with the purchase of firearms, ammunition and archery equipment.
  •  These conservation programs have led to dramatic increases in populations of various game species including deer, elk, antelope, turkeys and waterfowl.

 


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Established in 1975, the Institute for Legislative Action (ILA) is the "lobbying" arm of the National Rifle Association of America. ILA is responsible for preserving the right of all law-abiding individuals in the legislative, political, and legal arenas, to purchase, possess and use firearms for legitimate purposes as guaranteed by the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.