Jan 24, 2024 - News

Hunting could be enshrined in Florida's constitution

A rifleman in silhouette aims a gun over a lake

A man shoots a round of sporting clays. Photo: Sam Greenwood/Getty Images

A proposed amendment would enshrine rights for hunting and fishing in Florida's state constitution.

What's happening: The measure will appear on the November 2024 ballot.

  • The proposed amendment says: "Fishing, hunting, and the taking of fish and wildlife, including by the use of traditional methods, shall be preserved forever as a public right and preferred means of responsibly managing and controlling fish and wildlife."
  • It would not limit the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission's authority.

What they're saying: Backers say the measure is needed to fend off groups that want to restrict hunting and fishing.

  • The measure is supported by the National Rifle Association, which has pointed out that fees collected from hunting and fishing licenses and equipment — more than $22 million last year — fund conservation efforts.

Yes, but: Critics have outlined objections on the website Noto2.org.

  • They worry the amendment could embolden hunters to trespass on private property and use barbaric hunting methods.
  • "There is a place for hunting and fishing in society, but it is not to use barbaric methods to destroy our native wildlife populations," Chuck O'Neal, member of the NoTo2 political committee, told the Orlando Sentinel.

What we're watching: The measure needs at least 60% of the vote to pass.

Of note: State law already provides that "citizens of Florida have a right to hunt, fish, and take game."

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