An avid hunter and angler, Senator Bill Heath was elected to the Georgia State Senate in 2005 after serving one term in the Georgia House of Representatives. He currently serves as the Chair of the Senate Government Oversight Committee and as a member of the Agriculture and Consumer Affairs, Appropriations, and Finance Committees. He has also served as President of the State and Rural Leaders Association, an organization formed to deal exclusively with issues important to North America’s agricultural and rural areas.
Senator Heath is a member of the National Assembly of Sportsmen’s Caucuses Executive Council having been first elected in 2006. He also serves as the Senate Chair of the Georgia Legislative Sportsmen’s Caucus which works to protect and advance Georgia’s rich hunting and angling heritage. The Caucus annually orchestrates a Sportsmen’s and Coastal Day at the Capitol where allied sportsmen’s groups discuss important issues and showcase the importance and economic significance of hunters and anglers in the state to elected officials.
Senator Heath received the NASC Heritage Award in 2013 which recognizes caucus leaders who have significantly contributed to sportsmen’s interests in their state. Additionally, he received the Freedom’s Edge award from Knife Rights for getting knife preemption legislation passed. He consistently receives the highest rankings from the NRA, and in 2014 shepherded Georgia’s most comprehensive pro-Second Amendment bill through the State Senate. That bill gave hunters the opportunity to use suppressors on any gun legal for hunting, removed many of the restrictions on hand gun ownership and use, and prohibited the establishment of a data base of weapons carry permit holders.
“Some of my earliest memories of hunting are of me hanging on my father’s back as he hunted wild quail in Georgia. I can remember when you hardly ever saw white-tail deer or eastern turkeys in the state and now today, thanks to conservation efforts of sportsmen and women, they are everywhere. Working with the Georgia Legislative Sportsmen’s Caucus and NASC to ensure future generations can enjoy abundant game populations and ample opportunity to hunt and fish is extremely important to me,” Said Sen. Heath.
Sen. Heath (right) quail hunting in Georgia
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- Lack of access to hunting areas (18.02%)
- Lack of a mentor or instructor to take them (26.74%)
- Age limit restrictions on when they can purchase a license (1.16%)
- Lack of time or competing interests (16.28%)
- Technology (social media, phones, computers) (16.86%)
- Perceived negative public or peer-group opinions (20.93%)