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32-808. Conservation officers and employees; training requirements; powers and authority. (a) The secretary shall employ conservation officers and other employees, regardless of title, to exercise law enforcement authority as provided in subsection (b), if such officers and other employees successfully complete the required course of instruction for law enforcement officers approved by the Kansas law enforcement training center pursuant to K.S.A. 74-5607a, and amendments thereto, and employees appointed on a provisional or probationary basis for a period of not more than one year, except that such provisional or probationary employee shall meet at least the criteria on appointment specified in K.S.A. 74-5605, and amendments thereto, and shall not be issued a firearm until such employee has been instructed and trained in the use thereof by the department. An employee appointed on a provisional or probationary basis, who does not receive the certificate required under subsection (a) of K.S.A. 74-5607a, and amendments thereto, within one year following the date of the person's original appointment shall not have authority to enforce the laws of the state as provided in subsection (b). The secretary may appoint conservation officers and employees of the department, including appointment in the capacity as deputy conservation officers, and may appoint Kansas law enforcement officers temporarily assigned by their employer to the department. All deputy conservation officer appointments shall be on a voluntary basis and shall expire on December 31 following the date of any such appointment.

(b) Conservation officers, deputy conservation officers and other employees who have completed the course of instruction as provided in subsection (a), provisional or probationary employees who have met the requirements of subsection (a) and any other Kansas law enforcement officers authorized to enforce the laws of the state of Kansas shall have the power and authority to:

(1) Enforce all statutory provisions of chapter 32 of the Kansas Statutes Annotated or any rules and regulations promulgated thereunder, or any other laws of the state anywhere within the state, including but not limited to chapter 8 of the Kansas Statutes Annotated, and amendments thereto, except that nothing in this act shall grant conservation officers, deputy conservation officers and other employees authority that supersedes that of the local law enforcement authority having jurisdiction over the matter. The secretary shall establish a policy under which the department's officers and other employees primarily direct such officers' and employees' efforts toward the protection, conservation and management of natural resources of this state and the provision of safe and orderly lands controlled by the department. Such officers shall also have the powers of arrest set forth in K.S.A. 22-2401, and amendments thereto, and are empowered to make arrests, pursuant to K.S.A. 22-2307, and amendments thereto, as required by any policy adopted by the secretary. A conservation officer acting under authority of this subsection shall be considered an employee of the department and shall be subject to its direction, benefits and legal protection.

(2) Serve anywhere within the state warrants issued for the examination, investigation or trial of all violations of all laws of the state as provided in subsection (b).

(3) Carry firearms or weapons, concealed or otherwise, in the performance of their duties but only if the officer or employee has completed the required course of instruction for law enforcement officers at the Kansas law enforcement training center, unless otherwise qualified pursuant to K.S.A. 74-5608a, and amendments thereto, or as to a provisional or probationary employee who has met the requirements of subsection (a).

History: L. 1927, ch. 221, § 5; L. 1939, ch. 290, § 2; L. 1943, ch. 173, § 1; L. 1945, ch. 307, § 1; L. 1947, ch. 400, § 1; L. 1949, ch. 414, § 1; L. 1953, ch. 369, § 1; L. 1959, ch. 320, § 1; L. 1961, ch. 389, § 2; L. 1967, ch. 443, § 13; L. 1969, ch. 211, § 1; L. 1974, ch. 361, § 67; L. 1978, ch. 332, § 30; L. 1982, ch. 315, § 1; L. 1985, ch. 250, § 1; L. 1985, ch. 251, § 1; L. 1985, ch. 252, § 1; L. 1989, ch. 118, § 10; L. 1993, ch. 150, § 1; L. 1997, ch. 168, § 8; May 22.

Source or prior law:


Attorney General's Opinions:

Territorial limits of law enforcement authority of wildlife conservation officers. 96-82.

Jurisdiction of school law enforcement officer based on location, as well as control or ownership of property. 2002-39.

Natural resource officers not criminally liable for trespass on private lands in pursuit of statutory duties. 2007-37.


1. Right to condemn property on which duck hunting to be permitted determined. Ottawa Hunting Ass'n v. State, 178 Kan. 460, 463, 389 P.2d 754.

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