Kentucky Senate Bill 3 Defeated

FRANKFORT, KY -- The Kentucky Chapter of Backcountry Hunters & Anglers helped defeat a dangerous bill in the statehouse that would have made conservation more difficult in the state.

Senate Bill 3 would have placed the Kentucky Fish and Wildlife Commission under the Commissioner of Agriculture and attached the Department of Fish and Wildlife to the Department of Agriculture, two moves that would have reduced the independence of the DFW and complicated the ability of its commissioners to make good, science-based decisions for wildlife in the state.

But with the close of the general session, Senate Bill 3 effectively died in the House Committee on Committees.

There was a sense around the statehouse that this bill would pass due to its low number, which generally signifies leadership priority, and the sponsor refusing to pull the bill even after strong lobbying by Kentucky BHA and our conservation partners, arguing that it would be a poor decision for conservation.

The outdoorsmen and women, the conservation community, and the grass roots effort put forth by those who value public lands and waters, fish and wildlife resources, science-based management, and hunting heritage accepted the challenge, rose to the occasion, and have once again shown elected officials political volleying and degrading of outdoor traditions is not worth the fight. The North American Model of Wildlife Conservation is time tested and proven. Once again, it has prevailed.

Kentucky BHA leader Ret. Col. Mike Abell testifying at the Statehouse.

There is a small chance the bill could reappear in the Kentucky veto session, where the legislature reviews bills from the past session. It is unlikely this bill would stand again or make it past the governor's desk without a veto.

Kentucky BHA extends its thanks to everyone that stood up and made their voices heard in Frankfort this session, especially the representatives from Kentuckiana Safari Club, the League of Kentucky Sportsman, and the Congressional Sportsmans Foundation.

Jim Posewitz once said: "Never let your opponent's appraisal of your chances influence you. If they say you can't win or they will kick your butt, show up anyhow. Surrender nothing; make your opponent take it from you. Just standing there makes a big difference."

This bill was being watched and covered at a national level and will send a message to more than just the Kentucky elected officials - the North American Model of Conservation is worth fighting for.

About Kentucky BHA

Our chapter is dedicated to serving the interests of conservation and access to clean public lands and waters. Through planning, collaboration, and dedication, we will make a difference.

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