KLA hosted its virtual Legislative Meeting this week, where members received an analysis of proposed bills being considered by the Legislature. During the meeting, the membership recommended to the KLA Board of Directors, and the board subsequently approved, a directive that KLA support the portions of SB 2025 that restrict Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism (KDWPT) law enforcement officers from surveilling private property without a warrant. KLA previously had voiced concern over portions of the bill that applied to county noxious weed supervisors, but had not weighed in on the KDWPT portion of the bill.
It was a busy week at the Capitol, with the Legislature working to advance bills as the turnaround deadline, which marks the last day for nonexempt bills to be passed out of their chamber of origin, fast approaches. The following actions were taken on bills of interest to KLA members.
Spill remediation - HB 2155 passed the House of Representatives on a vote of 85-36. This bill, supported by KLA, would redesign the Kansas Department of Health and Environment’s spill remediation program. The bill states that animal and crop waste shall not be defined as pollutants and normal agricultural activities, such as fertilizing crops and applying pesticides according to the label, are excluded from the definition of release of a pollutant.
Sedgwick County nuisance abatement - SB 52, a bill that would grant Sedgwick County the ability to abate nuisances, passed the Senate. The bill included language worked on by KLA staff that would exclude land, structures, machinery, equipment or motor vehicles used for agricultural purposes from the county’s abatement authority.