113-168.2. Standard Commercial Fishing License.

(a) Requirement. - Except as otherwise provided in this Article, it is unlawful for any person to engage in a commercial fishing operation in the coastal fishing waters without holding a SCFL issued by the Division. A person who works as a member of the crew of a vessel engaged in a commercial fishing operation under the direction of a person who holds a valid SCFL is not required to hold a SCFL. A person who holds a SCFL is not authorized to take shellfish unless the SCFL is endorsed as provided in G.S. 113-168.5.

(a1) Use of Vessels. - The holder of a SCFL is authorized to use only one vessel in a commercial fishing operation at any given time. The Commission may adopt a rule to exempt from this requirement a person in command of a vessel that is auxiliary to a vessel engaged in a pound net operation, long-haul operation, or beach seine operation. A person who works as a member of the crew of a vessel engaged in a mechanical shellfish operation under the direction of a person who holds a valid SCFL with a shellfish endorsement is not required to hold a shellfish license.

(b) through (d) Repealed by Session Laws 1998-225, s. 4.11, effective July 1, 1999.

(e) Fees. - The annual SCFL fee for a resident of this State shall be four hundred dollars ($400.00). The annual SCFL fee for a person who is not a resident of this State shall be the amount charged to a resident of this State in the nonresident's state. In no event, however, may the fee be less than four hundred dollars ($400.00). For purposes of this subsection, a "resident of this State" is a person who is a resident within the meaning of:

(1) Sub-subdivisions a. through d. of G.S. 113-130(4) and who filed a State income tax return as a resident of North Carolina for the previous calendar or tax year, or

(2) G.S. 113-130(4)e.

(f) Assignment. - The holder of a SCFL may assign the SCFL to any individual who is eligible to hold a SCFL under this Article. It is unlawful for the holder of an SCFL to assign a shellfish endorsement of an SCFL to any individual who is not a resident of this State. The assignment shall be in writing on a form provided by the Division and shall include the name of the licensee, the license number, any endorsements, the assignee's name, mailing address, physical or residence address, and the duration of the assignment. If a notarized copy of an assignment is not filed with the Morehead City office of the Division within five days of the date of the assignment, the assignment shall expire. It is unlawful for the assignee of a SCFL to assign the SCFL. The assignment shall terminate:

(1) Upon written notification by the assignor to the assignee and the Division that the assignment has been terminated.

(2) Upon written notification by the estate of the assignor to the assignee and the Division that the assignment has been terminated.

(3) If the Division determines that the assignee is operating in violation of the terms and conditions applicable to the assignment.

(4) If the assignee becomes ineligible to hold a license under this Article.

(5) Upon the death of the assignee.

(6) If the Division suspends or revokes the assigned SCFL.

(7) At the end of the license year.

(g) Transfer. - A SCFL may be transferred only by the Division. A SCFL may be transferred pursuant to rules adopted by the Commission or upon the request of:

(1) A licensee, from the licensee to a member of the licensee's immediate family who is eligible to hold a SCFL under this Article.

(2) The administrator or executor of the estate of a deceased licensee, to the administrator or executor of the estate if a surviving member of the deceased licensee's immediate family is eligible to hold a SCFL under this Article. The administrator or executor must request a transfer under this subdivision within six months after the administrator or executor qualifies under Chapter 28A of the General Statutes. An administrator or executor who holds a SCFL under this subdivision may, for the benefit of the estate of the deceased licensee:

a. Engage in a commercial fishing operation under the SCFL if the administrator or executor is eligible to hold a SCFL under this Article.

b. Assign the SCFL as provided in subsection (f) of this section.

c. Renew the SCFL as provided in G.S. 113-168.1.

(3) An administrator or executor to whom a SCFL was transferred pursuant to subdivision (2) of this subsection, to a surviving member of the deceased licensee's immediate family who is eligible to hold a SCFL under this Article.

(4) The surviving member of the deceased licensee's immediate family to whom a SCFL was transferred pursuant to subdivision (3) of this subsection, to a third-party purchaser of the deceased licensee's fishing vessel.

(5) A licensee who is retiring from commercial fishing, to a third-party purchaser of the licensee's fishing vessel.

(h) Identification as Commercial Fisherman. - The receipt of a current and valid SCFL or shellfish license issued by the Division shall serve as proper identification of the licensee as a commercial fisherman.

(i) Record-Keeping Requirements. - The fish dealer shall record each transaction at the time and place of landing on a form provided by the Division. The transaction form shall include the information on the SCFL or shellfish license, the quantity of the fish, the identity of the fish dealer, and other information as the Division deems necessary to accomplish the purposes of this Subchapter. The person who records the transaction shall provide a completed copy of the transaction form to the Division and to the other party of the transaction. The Division's copy of each transaction form shall be transmitted to the Division by the fish dealer on or before the tenth day of the month following the transaction. (1997-400, s. 5.1; 1998-225, s. 4.11; 2001-213, s. 2; 2013-360, s. 14.8(b); 2013-384, s. 2(c); 2014-100, s. 14.9(b).)