Senator proposes adding right to hunt and fish to state constitution

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SANTA FE, NM (KRQE) – One New Mexico lawmaker wants to seal the right to hunt and fish by adding it to the state’s constitution. He says it’s about preserving a beloved tradition for many New Mexico families.

It’s something 21 other states already have written in their constitutions. Sen. George Munoz (D-Gallup) is looking to add it to New Mexico’s.

As with any constitutional amendment, this is a measure voters would have to approve statewide. The resolution simply makes it a right in New Mexico to hunt and fish.

Sen. Munoz says the point of the legislation is to protect New Mexicans’ right to enjoy this and benefit from these outdoor activities, which for many is a major source of food.

It could be called a preemptive measure to block any future attempts at changing New Mexico’s hunting and fishing laws.

“It’s really important to me and my family, and it’s important to a lot of families. Because I see a lot of hunters out there with their sons, bonding, family time and it’s really what matters, and so how do we protect that in New Mexico?” Sen. Munoz said.

The Gallup senator says if the resolution gets a simple majority in both chambers and the voters give it a thumbs-up, the New Mexico Game and Fish Department would continue to oversee hunting and fishing regulations to ensure a stable ecosystem. Endangered species would still be protected.

Some of the states that already have this same constitutional amendment in place include Oklahoma and Wyoming. Colorado tried to pass the measure in 2016, but failed.

Sen. Munoz sponsored the same legislation last year, but it never gained any momentum.

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