H597 - Wildlife Resources Commission Amends. (SL 2019-204)
Session Year 2019
Overview: S.L. 2019-204 makes the following changes to the Wildlife Resources Commission's (WRC) laws, licenses, and fees:

  • Requires the owner of a vessel registered with the WRC to place a WRC issued validation decal on both sides of the vessel, along with the vessel's identification number.
  • Makes technical changes to definitions relating to resources, and adds definitions for "Mountain Heritage Trout Waters," "Public Mountain Trout Waters," and "Wildlife Resources Commission Property."
  • Allows a person holding a trophy sale permit to sell permanently preserved bears or tanned bear hides and permanently preserved turkeys or turkey parts.
  • Allows a person holding a Resident Disabled Veteran Lifetime Unified Sportsman/Coastal Recreational Fishing License to keep that license even if the licensee becomes less than 50% disabled.
  • Makes conforming changes to refer to "investment income" of the Wildlife Endowment Fund, as opposed to only interest income.
  • Makes all licenses, permits, stamps, and certifications valid from the date of issue for a period of 12 months, unless indicated otherwise.
  • Allows WRC to establish fees for all licenses, permits, stamps, and certifications, except the Recreational Commercial Gear License, and round those fees up to the next whole dollar based on the Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers.
  • Creates new WRC licenses, modifies or recodifies several existing WRC licenses and increases numerous WRC license fees.
  • Makes conforming changes to the Sportsman Licenses to exclude trapping and to allow access to and use of WRC property.
  • Requires a trapper to include on any steel jaw, leghold, or conibear trap either the trapper's name and address or the trapper's WRC-issued identification number and the phone number for WRC's hotline to report wildlife violations.
  • Gives WRC inspectors and protectors jurisdiction to enforce the provisions of Article 19B of Chapter 106 of the General Statutes, concerning plant protection and conservation.
  • Adds a representative of the North Carolina Association of County Commissioners to the Beaver Damage Control Advisory Board, and removes the Director of the North Carolina Cooperative Extension from that same Board.
  • Changes the Beaver Management Assistance Program enrollment dates for counties and increases the fee to participate in the Program from $4,000 to $6,000.
  • Makes various changes to the statutes concerning regulation of venomous reptiles, large constricting snakes, and crocodilians.
  • Clarifies the scope of "an area" with regard to turkey hunting with bait as being within 300 yards of any place in which bait has been placed, and requires a knowing mental state for a violation.
  • Allows an eligible volunteer firefighter who has served for at least five consecutive years to obtain a lifetime hunting or fishing license for a fee amount equal to half of the applicable fee amount.

Sections 1 through 6 of this act became effective September 1, 2019. Sections 7 and 12 of this act became effective October 1, 2019. Section 9 becomes effective January 1, 2020. Section 10 of this act became effective December 1, 2019, and applies to offenses committed after that date. The remainder of this act became effective August 27, 2019.

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