South Carolina General Assembly
109th Session, 1991-1992

Bill 3869

                    Current Status

Introducing Body:               House
Bill Number:                    3869
Ratification Number:            486
Act Number:                     415
Primary Sponsor:                Snow
Type of Legislation:            GB
Subject:                        Coastal fisheries laws, point
Companion Bill Number:          886
Date Bill Passed both Bodies:   May 21, 1992
Computer Document Number:       436/11595.DW
Governor's Action:              S
Date of Governor's Action:      Jun 01, 1992
Introduced Date:                Apr 11, 1991
Date of Last Amendment:         Apr 29, 1992
Last History Body:              ------
Last History Date:              Jun 01, 1992
Last History Type:              Signed by Governor
Scope of Legislation:           Statewide
All Sponsors:                   Snow
Type of Legislation:            General Bill


 Bill  Body    Date          Action Description              CMN
 ----  ------  ------------  ------------------------------  ---
 3869  ------  Jun 01, 1992  Act No. 415
 3869  ------  Jun 01, 1992  Signed by Governor
 3869  ------  May 27, 1992  Ratified R 486
 3869  Senate  May 21, 1992  Read third time, enrolled for
 3869  Senate  May 20, 1992  Read second time, unanimous
                             consent for third reading on
                             Thursday, May 21, 1992
 3869  Senate  May 19, 1992  Committee Report: Favorable     07
 3869  Senate  Apr 30, 1992  Introduced, read first time,    07
                             referred to Committee
 3869  House   Apr 30, 1992  Read third time, sent to
 3869  House   Apr 29, 1992  Amended, read second time
 3869  House   Apr 15, 1992  Committee Report: Favorable     20
                             with amendment
 3869  House   Apr 11, 1991  Introduced, read first time,    20
                             referred to Committee

View additional legislative information at the LPITS web site.

(Text matches printed bills. Document has been reformatted to meet World Wide Web specifications.)

(A415, R486, H3869)


Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the State of South Carolina:

Point system for violations of coastal fisheries laws

SECTION 1. Chapter 17, Title 50 of the 1976 Code is amended by adding:

"Article 11

Point System for Violations of

Coastal Fisheries Laws

Section 50-17-1110. For the purposes of this article:

(1) `Coastal fisheries privileges' means the privilege to engage in an activity involving fishing or taking, attempting to take, or possessing fish, shellfish, crustaceans, or products of them as defined in Section 50-17-15 and includes an activity for which a license or permit is required from the Division of Marine Resources and the privilege to hold a license or permit.

(2) `Conviction' includes the entry of a plea of guilty or nolo contendere and the forfeiture of bail or collateral deposited to secure a defendant's appearance in court.

(3) `Department' means the South Carolina Wildlife and Marine Resources Department.

Section 50-17-1120. (A) There is established the following point system to be used by the department in suspending the privileges, licenses, and permits of persons convicted for violations of law and regulations which apply to coastal fisheries activities within this State:

(1) fishing or taking, attempting to take, buying, selling, or offering for sale fish, shellfish, or crustaceans without a proper license or permit: 18;

(2) fishing or taking or attempting to take fish, shellfish, or crustaceans in an unlawful manner, during unlawful hours or during the closed season for the activity, except shrimp trawling violations or violations in areas closed by the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control: 10;

(3) violating commercial fishing license or permit conditions: 8;

(4) using unlawful or unauthorized fishing methods, gear, or equipment: 8;

(5) failing to keep records or make reports required by law or regulation: 6;

(6) violating size limit provisions set by law for fish, shellfish, crustaceans, or other seafood products: 6;

(7) possessing more than the legal limit of fish, shellfish, or crustaceans: 6;

(8) unlawfully buying, selling, or offering for sale fish, shellfish, crustaceans, or other seafood products by a properly licensed or permitted person: 10;

(9) harvesting shellfish on culture permit areas or state bottoms without proper permission or permit: 8;

(10) harvesting shellfish in an area closed to shellfishing by the Department of Health and Environmental Control: 18;

(11) stealing catch or fishing equipment or damaging or interfering with fishing equipment: 18;

(12) trawling or channel netting in an area closed to trawling or during closed season: 8;

(13) captain or crew of a boat failing to cooperate with an enforcement officer: 18;

(14) wilfully impeding or obstructing the lawful harvest of marine species: 18;

(15) trawling during unlawful hours or within restricted areas off beaches: 8;

(16) violating law pertaining to female sponge crabs: 8;

(17) fishing or taking, attempting to take, or possessing fish, shellfish, crustaceans, or other seafood products in an illegal manner not mentioned specifically in this section: 6.

(B) The points and penalties assessed under this section are in addition to other civil remedies and criminal penalties which may be assessed.

Section 50-17-1130. Each time a person is convicted of a violation enumerated in Section 50-17-1120 the number of points assigned to a violation must be charged against him. For each calendar year in which the person received no points, the department shall deduct one-half of the accumulated points if the total number of points is greater than three. If a person has three or less points at the end of a calendar year in which no points were received, the department shall reduce his point total to zero. The points and penalties assessed are in addition to other civil remedies and criminal penalties. Nothing in this article affects the action of the department in suspending, revoking, or canceling a license or permit when the action is mandatory under the law of this State. However, the suspension provisions of this article, when applied, are in lieu of other suspension provisions under the law of this State.

Section 50-17-1140. The department shall suspend for one year the coastal fisheries privileges and associated licenses and permits issued to a person who has accumulated eighteen or more points. The suspension begins the eleventh day after the person receives written notice by mail, return receipt requested, of the suspension and ends the same day the following year. The suspension provisions of this article do not apply to a boat or vessel license or permit, except as applied to a person operating the boat or vessel under Section 50-17-1120(A)(1).

Section 50-17-1150. (A) Upon determination by the department that a person has accumulated sufficient points to warrant the suspension of his privileges, the department shall notify him in writing, return receipt requested, that his privileges have been suspended, and he shall return the license or permit, other than a boat or vessel license or permit, in his name to the department within ten days.

(B) The person, within ten days after the notice of suspension, may request in writing a review and, upon receipt of the request, the department shall afford him a review. The department shall notify him of the date, time, and place of the review, and he may be represented by an attorney. The review must take place within twenty working days of receiving the request.

(C) If the person requests a review, the suspension must be held in abeyance until the day of the final disposition of his review by the department. If the suspension is upheld, the suspension begins the eleventh day after the review and ends the same day the following year. The review by the department is limited to a determination of the validity of the violations and points assessed. No probationary authority is given to the department.

Section 50-17-1160. (A) A person whose privileges have been suspended may appeal the decision of the department under Article 3, Chapter 23 of Title 1, the Administrative Procedures Act.

(B) If the person requests a review upon the record, the suspension is held in abeyance until the day of the final disposition of the appeal, and if the suspension is upheld, the suspension begins that day and ends the same day the following year.

Section 50-17-1170. After the expiration of the suspension period the person's record must be cleared of all points.

Section 50-17-1180. The department shall administer and enforce this article and may promulgate regulations for its implementation. The department shall print and distribute a brochure explaining the point system.

Section 50-17-1190. A person engaging in activities suspended by this article while the suspension is in effect is guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction, for a first offense must be fined two hundred dollars or imprisoned thirty days and have his coastal fisheries privileges suspended for an additional three-year period for each offense. A person convicted of a second or subsequent offense under this section must be fined two thousand five hundred dollars or imprisoned one year."

Time effective

SECTION 2. This act takes effect upon approval by the Governor.

Approved the 1st day of June, 1992.