KANSAS CITY (KSNT) – The Kansas Department of Wildlife and Parks took questions on Friday regarding the recent approval of a bill that allows children to apply for lifetime hunting and fishing licenses.
Members of the KDWP met to discuss the recent passing of House Bill 2456 that was signed by Governor Laura Kelly earlier this year. The law allows children up to the age of seven to apply for lifetime hunting and fishing licenses for the state of Kansas without a certificate of completion of an approved hunter education course.
During the special meeting, Brad Loveless, the Secretary of the Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism, said the idea behind HB 2456 was to help children develop an early interest in hunting and fishing while training to partake in those activities.
“It is like a ping forward, an investment by that older adult in the mentoring process that helps kids become more situated in the outdoors,” Loveless said.
Loveless says this type of legislation is not popular in other states because many governments rely on license fees hunters and anglers pay every year. In Kansas, cost of the licenses for children, which will range from $300 to $500, is calculated by the KDWP to account for future revenue loss.
According to Dan Riley, a member of the KDWP, a vote deciding final licenses pricing will take place at a follow-up meeting later this year. He says the the law will possibly take effect in July.
Though the law is not in effect yet, Loveless says the KDWP has already begun working on regulations for the lifetime licenses. Once the legislation for HB 2456 was published, the KDWP will begin taking applications. So if a child is on the verge of aging out of the program, they can submit an application now and the department will issue a license based on the age listed on the application.