South Carolina Code of Laws
Unannotated

Title 46 - Agriculture

CHAPTER 23

Noxious Weeds

SECTION 46-23-10. Short title.

This chapter may be cited as the "South Carolina Noxious Weed Act".

HISTORY: 1962 Code Section 3-449.1; 1971 (57) 392; 2015 Act No. 15 (H.3323), Section 1, eff May 7, 2015.

Effect of Amendment

2015 Act No. 15, Section 1, reenacted this section with no apparent change.

SECTION 46-23-20. Definitions.

As used in this chapter:

(a) "Commission" means the State Crop Pest Commission of South Carolina or any other person to whom authority may be delegated to act in its stead.

(b) "Authorized inspector" means an employee of the Division of Regulatory and Public Service Programs, Clemson University or an employee of a cooperating agency specifically authorized to enforce the provisions of the federal Noxious Weed Act.

(c) "Noxious weed" means any living stage of any plant including seed or reproductive parts thereof or parasitic plants or parts thereof which is determined by the State Crop Pest Commission to be directly or indirectly injurious to public health, crops, livestock, or agriculture including, but not limited to, waterways and irrigation canals.

(d) "Move" means to ship, offer for shipment, offer for entry, import, receive for transportation or transport by a common carrier or carry, transport, move or allow to be moved by any means.

(e) "Director" means the Director of the Division of Regulatory and Public Service Programs, Clemson University.

HISTORY: 1962 Code Section 3-449.2; 1971 (57) 392; 2015 Act No. 15 (H.3323), Section 1, eff May 7, 2015.

Effect of Amendment

2015 Act No. 15, Section 1, deleted the former definition for "Commissioner", rewrote the definitions for "Authorized inspector" and "Noxious weed", and added the definitions for "Commission" and "Director".

SECTION 46-23-30. Commission may prevent introduction and dissemination of noxious weeds in State; remedies of owner of property destroyed or disposed of; regulations.

(a) The commission may, when it deems it necessary as an emergency measure in order to prevent the introduction into or the dissemination within South Carolina of any noxious weed new to or not theretofore widely prevalent or distributed within and throughout the State, seize, quarantine, treat, destroy, apply other remedial measures to, export, return to shipping point, or otherwise dispose of in such a manner as it deems appropriate, any noxious weed or any product or article of any character whatsoever or any means of conveyance which it has reason to believe contains or is contaminated with any noxious weed, offered for movement, moving, or has moved into or through the State or intrastate. Provided, that no such noxious weed, product, article, or means of conveyance shall be destroyed, exported, or returned to the shipping point or so ordered to be destroyed, exported, or returned to the shipping point, unless in the opinion of the commission, there is no less drastic action which would be adequate to prevent the introduction or dissemination of noxious weeds.

(b) The commission may order the owner or person in possession of any new or not theretofore widely prevalent noxious weed, or any product, article, or means of conveyance, or his agent to treat, apply other remedial measures to, destroy, export, return to shipping point, or make other disposition of such noxious weed, product, article, or means of conveyance without cost to the State or agency cooperating with the State in such a manner as the commission deems appropriate. The commission may apply to a court of competent jurisdiction in which such person resides or transacts business or in which the noxious weed, product, article, or means of conveyance is found for enforcement of such order by injunction, mandatory or otherwise. Process in any such case may be served in any judicial district wherein the defendant resides or transacts business or may be found, and subpoena for witnesses who are required to attend a court in any judicial district in such a case shall have force and effect in any other judicial district.

(c) The owner of any noxious weed, product, article, or means of conveyance, destroyed or otherwise disposed of by the commission under this section, may bring an action against the State within one year after such destruction or disposal, and recover just compensation for the destruction or disposal of such noxious weed, product, article, or means of conveyance (not including compensation for loss due to delays incident to determining eligibility for movement into or through South Carolina or for intrastate movement) if the owner establishes that such action was not warranted under this section. Any judgment rendered in favor of such owner shall be paid out of the money appropriated for noxious weed control.

(d) The commission may promulgate such emergency regulations as it deems necessary to prevent the introduction into or the dissemination within the State of noxious weeds.

HISTORY: 1962 Code Section 3-449.3; 1971 (57) 392; 2015 Act No. 15 (H.3323), Section 1, eff May 7, 2015.

Effect of Amendment

2015 Act No. 15, Section 1, substituted "commission" for "Commissioner" throughout, and made gender neutral changes.

SECTION 46-23-40. Quarantines.

(a) The commission is authorized and directed to quarantine any county, or any portion thereof, when it deems that such quarantine is necessary to prevent the spread of any noxious weed. Before such quarantine is established, the commission shall give due notice of hearing under such regulations as it may prescribe. At such hearing, any interested party may appear and be heard, either in person or by attorney.

(b) The commission is directed to give notice of quarantine or amendments thereto through publication in the county newspaper.

(c) No persons shall ship or offer for shipment to any common carrier, nor shall any common carrier receive for transportation or transport, nor shall any person carry or transport from any quarantined county or any quarantined portion thereof, into or through any other county, any noxious weed or any other product, article, or means of conveyance of any character whatsoever except as specified in the regulations issued by the commission.

(d) The commission shall make and promulgate rules and regulations governing the inspection, disinfection, certification, and methods and manner of movement of noxious weeds and any carriers thereof specified in the notice of the quarantine.

HISTORY: 1962 Code Section 3-449.4; 1971 (57) 392; 2015 Act No. 15 (H.3323), Section 1, eff May 7, 2015.

Effect of Amendment

2015 Act No. 15, Section 1, substituted "commission" for "Commissioner" throughout, and made gender neutral changes.

SECTION 46-23-50. Commissioner may detect and prevent spread of noxious weeds.

The commission is authorized to carry out operations or measures necessary to detect, eradicate, suppress, control, or prevent the spread of noxious weeds new to or not heretofore widely prevalent or distributed within and throughout the State. The commission is authorized to promulgate rules and regulations to accomplish the purposes of this chapter.

HISTORY: 1962 Code Section 3-449.5; 1971 (57) 392; 2015 Act No. 15 (H.3323), Section 1, eff May 7, 2015.

Effect of Amendment

2015 Act No. 15, Section 1, twice substituted "commission" for "Commissioner".

SECTION 46-23-60. Inspections and seizures.

Any authorized inspector shall have authority to stop and inspect without a warrant any person or means of conveyance moving into the State and any noxious weed, and any product or article of any character whatsoever which it has reason to believe contains or is contaminated with any noxious weed, to determine whether such person, product, article, or means of conveyance contains or is carrying any noxious weed contrary to this chapter or the regulations promulgated thereunder, and whether any such noxious weed, product, article, or means of conveyance contains or is contaminated with any noxious weed or is moving in violation of this chapter or any regulation promulgated thereunder; to stop and inspect, without a warrant, any person, product, article, or means of conveyance moving intrastate and any noxious weed, when it has reason to believe that such means of conveyance, product, or article contains any noxious weed, is contaminated thereby, or is moving contrary to the provisions of this chapter or any regulation promulgated thereunder; and to enter, with a warrant, any premises in the State to make any inspections and seizures necessary under this chapter. Any judge of a court of competent jurisdiction in South Carolina may, within his respective jurisdiction upon proper oath or affirmation showing probable cause to believe that there are on certain premises any noxious weeds, products, articles, or means of conveyance, regulated, or subject to disposal under this chapter, issue warrants for the entry of such premises to make any inspections or seizures under this chapter. Such warrants may be executed by any authorized employee of the Division of Regulatory and Public Service Programs, Clemson University.

HISTORY: 1962 Code Section 3-449.6; 1971 (57) 392; 2015 Act No. 15 (H.3323), Section 1, eff May 7, 2015.

Effect of Amendment

2015 Act No. 15, Section 1, in the last sentence, substituted "Division of Regulatory and Public Service Programs, Clemson University" for "South Carolina Department of Agriculture", and made gender neutral changes.

SECTION 46-23-70. Cooperation with other governments and agencies.

The commission is authorized to cooperate with the federal government, state agencies, farmers' organizations, other groups, and individuals in the conduction of those operations necessary to accomplish the purposes of this chapter. The commission is further authorized to cooperate with the governments of other states in carrying out necessary surveys, control operations, or quarantine measures, deemed necessary to eradicate, suppress, control, or retard the spread of noxious weeds, whenever the commission determines that such cooperation with the officials in other states is necessary or desirable to protect the interests of this State.

HISTORY: 1962 Code Section 3-449.7; 1971 (57) 392; 2015 Act No. 15 (H.3323), Section 1, eff May 7, 2015.

Effect of Amendment

2015 Act No. 15, Section 1, three times substituted "commission" for "Commissioner".

SECTION 46-23-80. Penalty.

Any person who violates any provision of this chapter, or any regulation promulgated thereunder, shall be deemed guilty of a misdemeanor and upon conviction shall be punished by a fine not exceeding five hundred dollars, or by imprisonment not exceeding one year, or both.

HISTORY: 1962 Code Section 3-449.8; 1971 (57) 392; 2015 Act No. 15 (H.3323), Section 1, eff May 7, 2015.

Effect of Amendment

2015 Act No. 15, Section 1, reenacted the section with no apparent change.

SECTION 46-23-90. Delegation of duties to director.

The commission shall delegate the duties provided in this chapter and other applicable chapters of this title to the director who may administer and enforce the provisions and promulgate related regulations. The director is the final decision authority in the designation and management of noxious weeds in the State. The director may hold public hearings at appropriate geographical locations after providing thirty days public notice in at least one newspaper of general circulation in the area. In making final decisions, the director may rely on the findings of any federal or state agencies involved.

HISTORY: 2015 Act No. 15 (H.3323), Section 1, eff May 7, 2015.




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