On Tuesday, April 9, 2019, the Kentucky Administrative Regulation Review Subcommittee (ARRS) met to consider numerous proposed regulation changes from various state agencies. Among these was a proposed change from the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources (KDFWR) that would expand the dates for the use of a crossbow in hunting whitetail deer, 301 KAR 2:172.
Representatives from KDFWR, Commissioner Rich Storm and Deputy Commissioners Karen Waldrop and Brian Clark, first presented the changes to the committee. Next, individuals in support of the change spoke. This included Kentucky Crossbow Federation President Perry McClure, League of Kentucky Sportsmen President Chet Hayes, and QDMA Kentucky President Pete Blandford. Also present were KCF Secretary/Treasurer Mary Kathryn DeLodder and member Jim Von Hoene.
Following the supportive testimony was the testimony of several individuals opposed to the expansion. The KDFWR representatives then responded to some of the comments made, and the committee members asked questions throughout.
The ARRS Committee does not take a yes or no vote to rule for or against regulations. Rather, they may rule that a regulation is deficient per KRS 13A.030. The Committee did not find the proposed regulation changes deficient, and therefore, the changes move forward to be implemented. The new regulation will become effective on May 31, 2019.
With these changes, Kentucky crossbow season for whitetail deer will open on the 3rd Saturday in September and close on the 3rd Monday in January. For 2019-20, this will be September 21 through January 20. There will no longer be blackout dates in the middle of the season. Also new is that youth (under 16) will be allowed to use a crossbow starting the 1st Saturday in September, as will continue to be the case for those age 65+ and those with a medical waiver.