OLYMPIA – Washington voters may some day be asked if they want to make hunting and fishing a constitutional right. But not this year.
A proposed constitutional amendment wouldn’t undermine reasonable regulations, Sen. John Braun, R-Centralia, its prime sponsor said. But it would recognize hunting and fishing as “foundational activities to the state”, he added, as some supporters are concerned about increasing urbanization.
The proposal had its first hearing in the Senate Natural Resources and Parks Committee, where it drew support from the state Fish and Wildlife Department and the Hunter’s Heritage Council. The Humane Society and some tribal groups were opposed.
Chairman Kirk Pearson, R-Monroe, called it “A good topic to discuss. Maybe next year.”
A constitutional amendment needs to pass each house with a two-thirds majority. But the proposal missed Wednesday’s deadline to pass its first chamber, the Senate, so it can’t be sent to voters this year.