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Kentucky Senate Bill 3 Defeated by Unified Opposition From the Sportsmen’s Community
Kentucky Ag Connection - 04/02/2024

Why It Matters: Kentucky would have been the first state in the country to place the management of its fish and wildlife agency under its Department of Agriculture and give all Wildlife Commissioner appointments to its Commissioner of Agriculture, which would have been a significant departure from how fish and wildlife resources have been managed since the early 20th Century. National and in-state sporting conservation groups rallied to defeat the legislation which shows the importance of the sportsmen’s community working together to protect our pastimes and also underscores the importance of hunters and anglers to Kentucky’s culture and economy.


-Senate Bill 3 failed to pass the House of Representatives by March 28 and is dead for all intents and purposes.

-With the veto period now underway, even if Senate Bill 3 were to pass the House of Representatives when they reconvene in mid-April, the General Assembly would not have time to override an almost certain veto from Governor Beshear.

-The Congressional Sportsmen’s Foundation (CSF) submitted multiple letters of opposition, testified in committee, coordinated an action alert with conservation partners, and coordinated with the Kentucky Legislative Sportsmen’s Caucus (Caucus) to oppose Senate Bill 3.

Senate Bill 3 proposed to (1) administratively attach the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources (KDFWR) to the Department of Agriculture and (2) authorize the Commissioner of Agriculture to appoint all members of the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Commission. While agriculture and sporting communities share similar interests, agricultural priorities may conflict with professional, science-based fish and wildlife management, and CSF was concerned about the intrusion of agricultural interests into wildlife management.

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