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Minnesota Legislature

Office of the Revisor of Statutes

97C.355 SHELTERS ON ICE; DARK HOUSES AND FISH HOUSES.

Subdivision 1.Identification required.

All shelters on the ice of state waters, including dark houses and fish houses, must have: (1) the owner's name and address, (2) the owner's driver's license number, or (3) the "MDNR#" license identification number issued to the owner legibly displayed on the exterior with characters at least two inches high.

Subd. 2.License required.

(a) A person may not leave a dark house, fish house, or shelter unattended on the ice at any time between midnight and one hour before sunrise unless:

(1) the house or shelter is licensed; and

(2) has the license tag attached to the exterior in a readily visible location, except as provided in this subdivision.

(b) The commissioner must issue a tag with a dark house, fish house, or shelter license, marked with a number to correspond with the license and the year of issue. A dark house, fish house, or shelter license is not required of a resident on boundary waters where the adjacent state does not charge a fee for the same activity.

Subd. 3.Door must open from outside.

A person may not use a dark house or fish house unless the door is constructed so that it can be opened from the outside when it is in use.

Subd. 4.Distance between houses.

A person may not erect a dark house, fish house, or shelter within ten feet of an existing dark house, fish house, or shelter.

Subd. 5.Burning of structures.

A person may not burn a structure on the ice of state waters without permission of the commissioner. The commissioner may allow burning only after determining that the structure cannot be removed from the ice by another reasonable manner. The owner must remove the remains of the burned structure from the ice.

Subd. 6.

[Repealed, 2006 c 281 art 2 s 58]

Subd. 7.Dates and times houses may remain on ice.

(a) A shelter, including a fish house or dark house, may not be on the ice unattended between midnight and one hour before sunrise after:

(1) the first Monday in March, for state waters south of a line starting at the Minnesota-North Dakota border and formed by rights-of-way of U.S. Route No. 10, then east along U.S. Route No. 10 to Trunk Highway No. 34, then east along Trunk Highway No. 34 to Trunk Highway No. 200, then east along Trunk Highway No. 200 to U.S. Route No. 2, then east along U.S. Route No. 2 to the Minnesota-Wisconsin border; and

(2) the third Monday in March, for other state waters.

A shelter, including a fish house or dark house, on the ice in violation of this subdivision is subject to the enforcement provisions of paragraph (b). The commissioner may, by rule, change the dates in this paragraph for any part of state waters. Copies of the rule must be conspicuously posted on the shores of the waters as prescribed by the commissioner.

(b) A conservation officer must confiscate a fish house, dark house, or shelter in violation of paragraph (a). The officer may remove, burn, or destroy the house or shelter. The officer shall seize the contents of the house or shelter and hold them for 60 days. If the seized articles have not been claimed by the owner, they may be retained for the use of the division or sold at the highest price obtainable in a manner prescribed by the commissioner.

Subd. 7a.Houses left overnight.

A fish house, dark house, or shelter left on the ice overnight must be marked with reflective material on each side of the structure. The reflective material must measure a total area of no less than two square inches on each side of the structure.

Subd. 8.Confiscation of unlawful structures; civil penalty.

(a) Structures on the ice in violation of this section may be confiscated and disposed of, retained by the division, or sold at the highest price obtainable, in a manner prescribed by the commissioner.

(b) In addition to other penalties provided by law, the owner of a structure left on the ice in violation of this section is subject to a civil penalty under section 115A.99.

(c) This subdivision also applies to structures left on state public access sites for more than 48 hours past the deadlines specified in subdivision 7.