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Office of the Revisor of Statutes

Key: (1) language to be deleted (2) new language

CHAPTER 307--S.F.No. 3576

An act

relating to natural resources; providing for viral hemorrhagic septicemia control; authorizing rulemaking;

amending Minnesota Statutes 2006, sections 17.4985, subdivisions 2, 3, 5; 17.4986, subdivisions 1, 2, 4; 17.4987; 17.4992, subdivision 2; 17.4993; 84D.03, subdivision 4; 97A.015, by adding a subdivision; 97C.203; 97C.205; 97C.341; 97C.391, by adding a subdivision; 97C.505, subdivision 1; 97C.515, subdivisions 2, 4, 5; 97C.821; repealing Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 97C.515, subdivision 3.

BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MINNESOTA:

Section 1.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 17.4985, subdivision 2, is amended to read:

Subd. 2.

Bill of lading.

(a) A state-issued bill of lading is required for:

(1) intrastate transportation of aquatic life other than salmonids and, catfish, or species on the official list of viral hemorrhagic septicemia susceptible species published by the United States Department of Agriculture, Animal and Plant Health Inspection Services, between licensed private fish hatcheries, aquatic farms, or aquarium facilities licensed for the species being transported if the aquatic life is being transported into a watershed where it is not currently present, if walleyes whose original source is south of marked State Highway 210 are being transported to a facility north of marked State Highway 210, or if the original source of the aquatic life is outside Minnesota and contiguous states; and

(2) stocking of waters other than public waters with aquatic life other than salmonids and, catfish, or species on the official list of viral hemorrhagic septicemia susceptible species published by the United States Department of Agriculture, Animal and Plant Health Inspection Services.

(b) When aquatic life is transported under paragraph (a), a copy of the bill of lading must be submitted to the regional fisheries manager at least 72 hours before the transportation.

(c) For transportation and stocking of waters that are not public waters:

(1) a bill of lading must be submitted to the regional fisheries manager 72 hours before transporting fish for stocking;

(2) a bill of lading must be submitted to the regional fisheries manager within five days after stocking if the waters to be stocked are confirmed by telecopy or telephone prior to stocking by the regional fisheries office not to be public waters; or

(3) a completed bill of lading may be submitted to the regional fisheries office by telecopy prior to transporting fish for stocking. Confirmation that the waters to be stocked are not public waters may be made by returning the bill of lading by telecopy or in writing, in which cases additional copies need not be submitted to the Department of Natural Resources.

(d) Bill of lading forms may only be issued by the Department of Natural Resources in St. Paul, and new bill of lading forms may not be issued until all previously issued forms have been returned.

Sec. 2.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 17.4985, subdivision 3, is amended to read:

Subd. 3.

Exemptions for transportation permits and bills of lading.

(a) A state-issued bill of lading or transportation permit is not required by an aquatic farm licensee for importation, of animals not on the official list of viral hemorrhagic septicemia susceptible species published by the United States Department of Agriculture, Animal and Plant Health Inspection Services; transportation, of animals not on the official list of viral hemorrhagic septicemia susceptible species published by the United States Department of Agriculture, Animal and Plant Health Inspection Services; or export for the following:

(1) minnows taken under an aquatic farm license in this state and transported intrastate;

(2) aquarium or ornamental fish including goldfish and tropical, subtropical, and saltwater species that cannot survive in the waters of the state, which may be imported or transported if accompanied by shipping documents;

(3) fish or fish eggs that have been processed for use as food, bait, or other purposes unrelated to fish propagation;

(4) live fish from a licensed aquatic farm, which may be transported directly to an outlet for processing or for other food purposes if accompanied by shipping documents;

(5) fish being exported if accompanied by shipping documents;

(6) sucker eggs, sucker fry, or fathead minnows transported intrastate for bait propagation or feeding of cultural aquatic life, except that if either species becomes listed on the official list of viral hemorrhagic septicemia susceptible species published by the United States Department of Agriculture, Animal and Plant Health Inspection Services, then a transportation permit is required;

(7) species of fish that are found within the state used in connection with public shows, exhibits, demonstrations, or fishing pools for periods not exceeding 14 days;

(8) fish being transported through the state if accompanied by shipping documents; or

(9) intrastate transportation of aquatic life between or within licensed private fish hatcheries, aquatic farms, or aquarium facilities licensed for the species being transported, except where required in subdivision 2 and except that salmonids and, catfish, or species on the official list of viral hemorrhagic septicemia susceptible species published by the United States Department of Agriculture, Animal and Plant Health Inspection Services, may only be transferred or transported intrastate without a transportation permit if they had no record of bacterial kidney disease or viral hemorrhagic septicemia at the time they were imported into the state and if they have had a fish health inspection within the preceding year that has shown no certifiable diseases to be present.

Aquatic life being transferred between licensed private fish hatcheries, aquatic farms, or aquarium facilities must be accompanied by shipping documents and salmonids and, catfish, or species on the official list of viral hemorrhagic septicemia susceptible species published by the United States Department of Agriculture, Animal and Plant Health Inspection Services, being transferred or transported intrastate without a transportation permit must be accompanied by a copy of their most recent fish health inspection.

(b) Shipping documents required under paragraph (a) must show the place of origin, owner or consignee, destination, number, and species.

Sec. 3.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 17.4985, subdivision 5, is amended to read:

Subd. 5.

Permit application.

An application for a transportation permit must be made on forms provided by the commissioner. An incomplete application must be rejected. An application for a transportation permit for salmonids and, catfish, or species on the official list of viral hemorrhagic septicemia susceptible species published by the United States Department of Agriculture, Animal and Plant Health Inspection Services, their eggs, or sperm must be accompanied by certification that the source of the eggs or sperm are free of certifiable diseases, except that eggs with enteric redmouth, whirling disease, or furunculosis may be imported, transported, or stocked following treatment approved by the commissioner, and fish with bacterial kidney disease or viral hemorrhagic septicemia may be imported, transported, or stocked into areas where the disease has been previously introduced identified as being present. A copy of the transportation permit showing the date of certification inspection must accompany the shipment of fish while in transit and must be available for inspection by the commissioner. By 14 days after a completed application is received, the commissioner must approve or deny the importation permits as provided in this section.

Sec. 4.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 17.4986, subdivision 1, is amended to read:

Subdivision 1.

Importation and stocking restrictions.

A person may not import fish into or stock fish in the state without first obtaining a transportation permit with a disease certification, as prescribed under section 17.4985, subdivision 5, when required or a bill of lading from the commissioner, unless the person is exempted.

Sec. 5.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 17.4986, subdivision 2, is amended to read:

Subd. 2.

Licensed facilities.

(a) The commissioner shall issue transportation permits to import:

(1) indigenous and naturalized species except trout, salmon, and catfish, or species on the official list of viral hemorrhagic septicemia susceptible species published by the United States Department of Agriculture, Animal and Plant Health Inspection Services, and sperm from any source to a standard facility;

(2) trout, salmon, and catfish, or species on the official list of viral hemorrhagic susceptible species published by the United States Department of Agriculture, Animal and Plant Health Inspection Services, from a nonemergency enzootic disease area to a containment facility if the fish are certified within the previous year to be free of certifiable diseases, except that eggs with enteric redmouth, whirling disease, or furunculosis may be imported following treatment approved by the commissioner, and fish with bacterial kidney disease or viral hemorrhagic septicemia may be imported into areas where the disease has been previously introduced identified as being present; and

(3) trout, salmon, and catfish, or species on the official list of viral hemorrhagic septicemia susceptible species published by the United States Department of Agriculture, Animal and Plant Health Inspection Services, from a facility in a nonemergency enzootic disease area with a disease-free history of three years or more to a standard facility, except that eggs with enteric redmouth, whirling disease, or furunculosis may be imported following treatment approved by the commissioner, and fish with bacterial kidney disease or viral hemorrhagic septicemia may be imported into areas where the disease has been previously introduced identified as being present.

(b) If a source facility in a nonemergency enzootic disease area cannot demonstrate a history free from disease, aquatic life may only be imported into a quarantine facility.

Sec. 6.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 17.4986, subdivision 4, is amended to read:

Subd. 4.

Disease-free history.

Disease-free histories required under this section must include the results of a fish health inspection. When disease-free histories of more than one year are required for importing salmonids or, catfish, or species on the official list of viral hemorrhagic septicemia susceptible species published by the United States Department of Agriculture, Animal and Plant Health Inspection Services, the disease history must be of consecutive years that include the year previous to, or the year of, the transportation request.

Sec. 7.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 17.4987, is amended to read:

17.4987 STOCKING PRIVATE AQUATIC LIFE.

(a) A person may not release private aquatic life into public waters that are not licensed as part of an aquatic farm without first obtaining a transportation permit from the commissioner. The commissioner may:

(1) deny issuance of a permit if releasing the private aquatic life is not consistent with the management plan for the public waters.; and

(2) approve the import, transport, and stocking of fish with bacterial kidney disease or viral hemorrhagic septicemia into areas or waters where either disease has been identified as being present.

(b) The commissioner shall make management plans available to the public.

(b) (c) If a permit is denied, the commissioner must provide reasons for the denial in writing.

Sec. 8.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 17.4992, subdivision 2, is amended to read:

Subd. 2.

Restriction on the sale of game fish.

(a) Except as provided in paragraph (b), species on the official list of viral hemorrhagic septicemia susceptible species published by the United States Department of Agriculture, Animal and Plant Health Inspection Services, must be free of viral hemorrhagic septicemia and species of the family salmonidae or ictaluridae, except bullheads, must be free of certifiable diseases if sold for stocking or transfer to another aquatic farm.

(b) The following exceptions apply to paragraph (a):

(1) eggs with enteric redmouth, whirling disease, or furunculosis may be transferred between licensed facilities or stocked following treatment approved by the commissioner.;

(2) fish with bacterial kidney disease or viral hemorrhagic septicemia may be transferred between licensed facilities or stocked in areas where the disease has been previously introduced. identified as being present; and

(3) the commissioner may allow transfer between licensed facilities or stocking of fish with enteric redmouth or furunculosis when the commissioner determines that doing so would pose no threat to the state's aquatic resources.

Sec. 9.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 17.4993, is amended to read:

17.4993 MINNOWS.

Subdivision 1.

Taking from public waters.

(a) Under an aquatic farm license, a licensee may take minnow sperm, minnow eggs, and live minnows for aquatic farm purposes from public waters for aquatic farm purposes under an aquatic farm license, except that have been tested for viral hemorrhagic septicemia when the testing indicates the disease is not present.

(b) A licensee may take sucker eggs and sperm may only be taken in approved waters with a sucker egg license endorsement as provided by section 17.4994.

Subd. 2.

Importation of live minnows.

Minnows from outside the state may not be imported live by a licensee for purposes other than processing or feeding aquatic farm fish. A transportation permit as prescribed under sections 17.4985, 17.4986, and 97C.515, subdivision 4, is required for importation.

Sec. 10.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 84D.03, subdivision 4, is amended to read:

Subd. 4.

Commercial fishing and turtle, frog, and crayfish harvesting restrictions in infested and noninfested waters.

(a) All nets, traps, buoys, anchors, stakes, and lines used for commercial fishing or turtle, frog, or crayfish harvesting in an infested water that is designated because it contains invasive fish or, invertebrates, or certifiable diseases, as defined in section 17.4982, may not be used in any other waters. If a commercial licensee operates in both an infested water designated because it contains invasive fish or, invertebrates, or certifiable diseases, as defined in section 17.4982, and other waters, all nets, traps, buoys, anchors, stakes, and lines used for commercial fishing or turtle, frog, or crayfish harvesting in waters not designated as infested with invasive fish or, invertebrates, or certifiable diseases, as defined in section 17.4982, must be tagged with tags provided by the commissioner, as specified in the commercial licensee's license or permit, and may not be used in infested waters designated because the waters contain invasive fish or, invertebrates, or certifiable diseases, as defined in section 17.4982.

(b) All nets, traps, buoys, anchors, stakes, and lines used for commercial fishing or turtle, frog, or crayfish harvesting in an infested water that is designated solely because it contains Eurasian water milfoil must be dried for a minimum of ten days or frozen for a minimum of two days before they are used in any other waters, except as provided in this paragraph. Commercial licensees must notify the department's regional or area fisheries office or a conservation officer before removing nets or equipment from an infested water designated solely because it contains Eurasian water milfoil and before resetting those nets or equipment in any other waters. Upon notification, the commissioner may authorize a commercial licensee to move nets or equipment to another water without freezing or drying, if that water is designated as infested solely because it contains Eurasian water milfoil.

(c) A commercial licensee must remove all aquatic macrophytes from nets and other equipment when the nets and equipment are removed from waters of the state.

(d) The commissioner shall provide a commercial licensee with a current listing of designated infested waters at the time that a license or permit is issued.

Sec. 11.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 97A.015, is amended by adding a subdivision to read:

Subd. 5a.

Certifiable diseases.

"Certifiable diseases" has the meaning given it in section 17.4982.

Sec. 12.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 97C.203, is amended to read:

97C.203 EXCHANGE OF FISH OR WILDLIFE RESOURCES; DISPOSAL OF STATE HATCHERY PRODUCTS.

(a) The commissioner shall dispose of fish hatchery products or exchange fish or wildlife resources only after they have been tested for certifiable diseases. The testing must have been completed within the 12 months preceding the disposal or exchange. Fish or wildlife resources subject to an exchange must have received a disease-free certification for those certifiable diseases not currently documented in Minnesota. Disease certification must be provided prior to accepting the fish or wildlife resource. When the fish or wildlife resource is not certified as disease-free, they may be stocked or transferred only into waters that already contain that disease.

(b) State hatchery products shall be disposed of according to the following order of priorities:

(1) distribution of fish eggs and fry to state hatcheries to hatch fry or raise fingerlings for stocking waters of the state for recreational fishing;

(2) transfer to other government agencies in exchange for fish or wildlife resources of equal value or private fish hatcheries in exchange for fish to be stocked in waters of the state for recreational fishing;

(3) sale to private fish hatcheries or licensed aquatic farms at a price not less than the fair wholesale market value, established as the average price charged at the state's private hatcheries and contiguous states per volume rates;

(4) transfer to other government agencies, colleges, or universities for cooperative fish management and research purposes; and

(5) sale of not more than $25 fair market value to any school, museum, or commercial enterprise for curriculum implementation, educational programs, public exhibition, or cooperative displays.

Sec. 13.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 97C.205, is amended to read:

97C.205 TRANSPORTING AND STOCKING FISH.

(a) Except on the water body where taken, a person may not transport a live fish in a quantity of water sufficient to keep the fish alive, unless the fish:

(1) is being transported under an aquaculture license as authorized under sections 17.4985 and 17.4986;

(2) is being transported for a fishing contest weigh-in under section 97C.081;

(3) is a minnow being transported under section 97C.505 or 97C.515;

(4) is being transported by a commercial fishing license holder under section 97C.821; or

(5) is being transported as otherwise authorized in this section or as prescribed for certifiable diseases under sections 17.46 to 17.4999.

(b) The commissioner may adopt rules to allow and regulate:

(1) the transportation of fish and fish eggs; and

(2) the stocking of waters with fish or fish eggs.

(c) The commissioner shall prescribe rules designed to encourage local sporting organizations to propagate game fish by using rearing ponds. The rules must:

(1) prescribe methods to acquire brood stock for the ponds by seining public waters;

(2) allow the sporting organizations to own and use seines and other necessary equipment; and

(3) prescribe methods for stocking the fish in public waters that give priority to the needs of the community where the fish are reared and the desires of the organization operating the rearing pond.

(d) A person age 16 or under may, for purposes of display in a home aquarium, transport largemouth bass, smallmouth bass, yellow perch, rock bass, black crappie, white crappie, bluegill pumpkinseed, green sunfish, orange spotted sunfish, and black, yellow, and brown bullheads taken by angling. No more than four of each species may be transported at any one time, and any individual fish can be no longer than ten inches in total length.

Sec. 14.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 97C.341, is amended to read:

97C.341 CERTAIN FISH AQUATIC LIFE PROHIBITED FOR BAIT.

(a) A person may not use live minnows imported from outside of the state, game fish, goldfish, or carp for bait.

(b) A person may not import or possess live, frozen, or processed bait from known waters where viral hemorrhagic septicemia has been identified as being present. For purposes of this paragraph, "bait" includes fish, aquatic worms, amphibians, invertebrates, and insects used for angling.

Sec. 15.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 97C.391, is amended by adding a subdivision to read:

Subd. 3.

Rules.

The commissioner may by rule establish reasonable conditions on the buying and selling of fish that would prevent or slow the spread of certifiable diseases and invasive species.

Sec. 16.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 97C.505, subdivision 1, is amended to read:

Subdivision 1.

Authority to take, possess, buy, and sell.

(a) Minnows may be taken, possessed, bought, and sold, subject to the restrictions in this chapter, section 84D.03, subdivision 3, and in rules adopted by the commissioner under paragraph (b). A person may not take, possess, or sell minnows except for use as bait or for ornamental or aquacultural purposes.

(b) The commissioner may adopt rules for the taking, possession, purchase, sale, and transportation of minnows.

Sec. 17.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 97C.515, subdivision 2, is amended to read:

Subd. 2.

Permit for transportation.

(a) A person may transport minnows through the state with a permit from the commissioner. The permit must state the name and address of the person, the number and species of minnows, the point of entry into the state, the destination, and the route through the state. The permit is not valid for more than 12 hours after it is issued.

(b) The commissioner may require the person transporting minnow species found on the official list of viral hemorrhagic septicemia susceptible species published by the United States Department of Agriculture, Animal and Plant Health Inspection Services, to provide health certification for viral hemorrhagic septicemia or other certifiable diseases. For certifiable diseases not currently documented in Minnesota, the certification must be dated within the 12 months preceding transport.

Sec. 18.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 97C.515, subdivision 4, is amended to read:

Subd. 4.

Private fish hatchery or aquatic farm.

(a) A person with a private fish hatchery or aquatic farm license may transport minnows with a transportation permit from contiguous states to the private fish hatchery or aquatic farm, provided the minnows are used for processing or feeding hatchery fish.

(b) The commissioner may require inspection of minnows and disease certification for species on the official list of viral hemorrhagic septicemia susceptible species published by the United States Department of Agriculture, Animal and Plant Health Inspection Services, that are being transported from outside the state.

(c) The commissioner may approve the import of minnows into areas or waters where certifiable diseases have been identified as being present.

Sec. 19.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 97C.515, subdivision 5, is amended to read:

Subd. 5.

Special permits.

(a) The commissioner may issue a special permit, without a fee, to allow a person with a private fish hatchery license to import minnows from other states for export. A permit under this subdivision is not required for importation authorized under subdivision 4.

(b) An applicant for a permit under this subdivision shall submit to the commissioner sufficient information to identify potential threats to native plant and animal species and an evaluation of the feasibility of the proposal. The permit may include reasonable restrictions on importation, transportation, possession, containment, disease certification, and disposal of minnows to ensure that native species are protected. The permit may have a term of up to two years and may be modified, suspended, or revoked by the commissioner for cause, including violation of a condition of the permit.

Sec. 20.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 97C.821, is amended to read:

97C.821 POSSESSION, SALE, AND TRANSPORTATION OF COMMERCIAL FISH.

Subject to the applicable provisions of the game and fish laws, fish taken under commercial fishing licenses may be possessed in any quantity, bought, sold, and transported at any time. Commercial fishing licensees may transport their catch live to holding facilities, if the licensee has exclusive control of the facilities. Commercial fishing licensees may harvest fish from their holding facilities at any time with their licensed gear. The commissioner may prohibit the transport of live fish taken under a commercial fishing license from waters that contain nonnative species, are designated as infested waters, or are infected with any certifiable disease.

Sec. 21.

REPEALER.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 97C.515, subdivision 3, is repealed.

Sec. 22.

EFFECTIVE DATE.

Sections 1 to 21 are effective the day following final enactment.

Presented to the governor May 12, 2008

Signed by the governor May 15, 2008, 3:02 p.m.