In Session – Agriculture
Natural Resources – Fishing and Hunting Rights
Stating certain findings of the General Assembly related to the value of fishing and hunting to the cultural and social heritage and the economy of the State; and establishing that it is the intent of the General Assembly that residents of the State have a right to fish and to hunt subject to regulations and restrictions under laws that the General Assembly enacts.
Agriculture – Cost-Sharing Program – State Cost-Sharing Funds
Sponsored by: Chair, Education, Health, and Environmental Affairs Committee (By Request – Departmental – Agriculture)
Increasing from 87.5% to 100% the percentage of eligible costs for which State cost-sharing funds may be made available for projects that prevent or control agriculturally related nonpoint source water pollution.
Natural Resources – Aquaculture – Leases
Sponsored by: Chair, Education, Health, and Environmental Affairs Committee (By Request – Departmental – Natural Resources)
Repealing the authority of the Department of Natural Resources to establish Aquaculture Enterprise Zones and issue leases within those zones for shellfish aquaculture; authorizing the Department to issue enterprise leases under certain circumstances for the cultivation of native or naturalized species of aquatic plants; prohibiting the Department from issuing an enterprise lease for the cultivation of nonnative species; requiring an applicant for a lease to pay an application fee; establishing a maximum lease term of 5 years; etc.
Unlawful Taking of Oysters From Submerged Land Leases, Aquaculture Leases, and Water Column Leases – Penalties
Sponsored by: Delegate Boyce
Requiring, rather than authorizing, the Department of Natural Resources to suspend a certain tidal fish license on conviction of the license holder for a certain violation; requiring a certain person who has a tidal fish license suspended under the Act to complete a certain class at the person’s expense; prohibiting a person who has a seafood dealer authorization from purchasing, offering to purchase, or possessing oysters that were unlawfully harvested from a certain lease under certain circumstances; providing certain penalties; etc.
Natural Resources – Fishing – Wild–Caught Blue Catfish
Sponsored by: Senator Guzzone
Opposing certain inspection rules promulgated by the U.S. Department of Agriculture that have drastically impeded the harvest and sale of blue catfish and thus rendered the State unable to adequately use the commercial harvest as a form of control over the invasive blue catfish species; urging the U.S. Congress to amend 21 U.S.C. § 601(w) to exempt the wild catch of domestic catfish from certain inspection requirements; and requiring a copy of the Resolution to be forwarded to certain elected officials.