Outdoors bills push on through legislature

Even with their plates crowded with tax and budget-related issues, the Kansas legislature is working through several outdoors-related bills -

- A bill that would ease taxation rates on boats and other water vessels is expected to see final action in the senate today. With a 2/3 majority the issue could go to Kansas voters in November.

-A house bill that would allow wide-spread use of crossbows during the archery deer season and establish a pre-rut, firearms season for antlerless whitetails could go to a vote in the house today, then on to the senate natural resources committee.

- A senate bill that would have allowed the use of crossbows during the archery season appears to have died.

- A Wildlife and Parks-sponsored bill to remove the exemption for those 65 and older from buying hunting and fishing permits could be before the senate committee on Friday.

- A bill that would allow hunters to carry handguns for personal protection during other weapon-specific seasons easily passed the house recently and has moved to the senate.

-A bill that would raise the fines paid for poaching deer, especially those with trophy-class racks, has been presented to the house agriculture and natural resources committee.

- A bill that could allow state park annual vehicle permits to be sold at the time of the payment of auto registration fees and taxes is in the house agriculture and natural resources committee.