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Minnesota Legislature

Office of the Revisor of Statutes

97C.005 SPECIAL MANAGEMENT WATERS.

Subdivision 1.Definition; designation.

(a) Special management waters are waters that:

(1) have been subject to special regulations that have been evaluated and proven effective under an experimental waters designation under section 97C.001; or

(2) are classified by the commissioner for primary use as trophy lakes, family fishing lakes, designated trout lakes, designated trout streams, special species management lakes, and other designated uses.

(b) The commissioner may designate any waters of the state, including experimental waters, as special management waters. The commissioner shall by rule establish methods and criteria for public participation in the evaluation and designation of waters as special management waters.

(c) Designation of special management waters under this section is not subject to chapter 14.

Subd. 2.Public notice and meeting.

(a) Before the commissioner designates special management waters, public comment must be received and, for waters other than those proposed to be designated as trout streams or trout lakes, a public meeting must be held in the county where the largest portion of the waters is located.

(b) For waters previously designated as experimental waters, a proposed change in status to special management waters must be announced before the public meeting by notice published in a news release issued by the commissioner and in a newspaper of general circulation in the area where the waters are located. The notice must be published at least once between 30 and 60 days before the public meeting, and at least once between seven and 30 days before the meeting. If a water proposed to be designated is a lake with a water area of more than 1,500 acres, or is a stream or river with a reach of more than six miles, a public meeting must also be held in the seven-county metropolitan area.

(c) For proposed special management waters, other than designated trout lakes and designated trout streams, that were not previously designated as experimental waters, notice of the proposed designation must be given as provided in this paragraph. The notice must be posted at publicly maintained access points at least 90 days before the public meeting and during the open angling season for fish the taking of which on the waters is proposed to be regulated under subdivision 3. Before the public meeting, notice of the meeting must be published in a news release issued by the commissioner and in a newspaper of general circulation in the area where the proposed special management waters are located. The notice must be published at least once between 30 and 60 days before the meeting, and at least once between seven and 30 days before the meeting. If a water to be designated is a lake with a water area of more than 1,500 acres, or is a stream or river with a reach of more than six miles, a public meeting must also be held in the seven-county metropolitan area.

(d) For waters proposed to be designated as trout streams or trout lakes, notice of the proposed designation must be published at least 90 days before the effective date of the designation in a news release issued by the commissioner and in a newspaper of general circulation in the area where the waters are located. In addition, all riparian owners along the waters must be notified at least 90 days before the effective date of the designation.

(e) The notices required in this subdivision must summarize the proposed action, invite public comment, and specify a deadline for the receipt of public comments. The commissioner shall mail a copy of each required notice to persons who have registered their names with the commissioner for this purpose. The commissioner shall consider any public comments received in making a final decision.

Subd. 3.Seasons, limits, and other rules.

The commissioner may, in accordance with the procedures in subdivision 2, paragraphs (c) and (e), or by rule under chapter 14, establish open seasons, limits, methods, and other requirements for taking fish on special management waters.