May 6, 2024

Commission Restructuring Bill Gains Momentum During Kansas’ Veto Session

Article Contact: Jake Gould,

Why It Matters: Throughout Kansas’ legislative session, several attempts were made to alter the current Kansas Wildlife and Parks Commission, including efforts to alter how commissioners are appointed as well as proposals to completely abolish the current Kansas Wildlife and Parks Commission. While these early attempts failed due to legislative deadlines, a final attempt was made to change the appointment process. During Kansas’ veto session a Conference Committee overhauled a bill originally regarding vehicle insurance and replaced it with the commission appointment language from Senate Bill 347, which failed earlier in the session.


  • Senate Bill 347 (SB 347) was originally introduced as a bill that would have required all commissioner appointments made by the Governor to first require Senate approval.
  • SB 347 was amended in the House to abolish the current Kansas Wildlife and Parks Commission, while also changing the Commissioner appointment process.
  • Though SB 347 failed due to legislative deadlines, the Commission appointment portion of the bill resurfaced after House Bill 2530 (HB 2530) was overhauled in conference committee and the committee’s report was adopted by both chambers.

The Kansas legislative session adjourned in early April and reconvened for the start of their veto session on April 29. While many of the bills that the Congressional Sportsmen’s Foundation (CSF) was tracking failed due to legislative deadlines, an attempt to alter the Kansas Wildlife and Parks Commission’s appointment process resurfaced. During their veto session, a Conference Committee took HB 2530, a bill that originally dealt with vehicle insurance, completely removed the language of that bill, and inserted the commission appointment language from SB 347. However, this version did not include language that would have abolished the current Kansas Wildlife and Park Commission.

Many state game commissions, including the Kansas Wildlife and Parks Commission, were established with the purpose of protecting and conserving wildlife through regulations and sustainable hunting, fishing, and trapping. Members of these commissions should be experts in wildlife management, understand the significant contributions that hunters and anglers have on the conservation of fish and wildlife resources, and should be dedicated to protecting and advancing opportunities for sportsmen and women to participate in Kansas’ historical outdoor heritage. While each state has their own process for appointing members to their commission, CSF maintains that the knowledge outlined above be considered heavily, regardless of the entity charged with making commission appointments.

SB 347 ultimately failed due to the legislative deadlines, meaning that the current Kansas Wildlife and Parks Commission will not be abolished. However, the Conference Committee Report for HB 2530 was adopted by both the House and Senate so changes to the appointment process for commissioners are still on the table. From here, Governor Laura Kelly will have the final say as to whether these changes will actually take effect in Kansas.

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