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September, 2013 Commission Meeting

Time: 8:30am
Dates: September 5 - 6, 2013
Place: Crowne Plaza Pensacola Grand Hotel
200 East Gregory Street
Pensacola, FL 32502
PensacolaGrandHotel.com/

This meeting is open to the public

All interested individuals may speak at workshops or meetings of the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (Commission) within the guidelines established by the Commission.  To ensure the public's opportunity to be heard and the orderly conduct of the meeting, the Chairman reserves the right to establish a time for adjournment of the workshop or meeting, to limit the time for speakers, and to limit the time allotted for specific agenda items.

Pursuant to the provisions of the Americans with Disabilities Act, any person requiring special accommodations to participate in this meeting should notify the agency at least five calendar days before the meeting by calling 850-488-6411.  Contact the agency using the Florida Relay Service at 800-955-8771 (TDD) or 800-955-8770 (voice) if you are hearing or speech impaired.

Agenda items listed under headings other than “Items Requiring Action” may be re-ordered or moved by the Chairman to different days of the meeting to accommodate scheduling issues.

The meeting may include fact-finding field trips to Commission-managed areas or facilities; or to other areas to learn about management, and enforcement activities.

Typically, the Chairman may ask staff and the public to work through lunch on either day.  Please plan accordingly.

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Draft Agenda

Agenda

8:30 a.m., Thursday, September 5, 2013

  1. Meeting Opening and Recognitions
    1. Call to Order
    2. Invocation and Pledge of Allegiance
  2. Administrative Matters
    1. Review and Approve June 11-13, 2013 Commission Meeting Minutes Draft June Minutes
    2. Approve Regular Meeting Agenda
    3. Approve Consent Agenda
  3. Chairman's Report and Executive Director's Report
  4. Items Requiring Action - Marine Fisheries
    1. Final Rule
      1. Boca Grande Pass Tarpon Fishing Gear - The proposed final rules would address the Commission’s definition of snagging for tarpon in Chapter 68B- 32, Tarpon.  The proposed final rules would also consider prohibiting gear rigged with a weight attached to the bottom of the hook in order to reduce snagging of tarpon in Boca Grande Pass. Presentation
        1. 68B-32.002 Definitions - The proposed final rule would enhance the definition in the tarpon chapter of “snagging” or “snatch hooking.”
        2. 68B-4.018 Boca Grande Pass Gear Restrictions - The proposed final rule would prohibit the use and possession of gear rigged with a weight attached to the bottom of the hook in Boca Grande Pass.
    2. Fishery Management Council Updates
      1. Gulf of Mexico Fisheries Management Council (GMFMC) - Staff will report on GMFMC actions from their meetings in Pensacola, FL on June 17-21; New Orleans, LA on July 17; and San Antonio, TX on August 26-30.  Topics include: red snapper, mackerel, cobia, red drum, and data collection. Gulf Council Report Presentation | Gulf Council Report Presentation Version 2
        1. Discussion of supplemental red snapper recreational harvest season for 2013 and approval of additional harvest in state waters if available.
      2. South Atlantic Fisheries Management Council (SAFMC) - Staff will report on SAFMC actions from their June 10-14 meeting in Stuart and anticipated actions and discussions at their upcoming meeting on September 16-20 in Charleston, SC.  Topics include: red snapper, other snapper grouper species, mackerel, cobia, deepwater shrimp and corals, dolphin, and wahoo. SAFMC Report Presentation
    3. Federal Consistency
      1. Gulf Grouper - Adoption of a Federal Standard - The proposed rule amendment would achieve consistency between the Commission’s recreational grouper season regulations in state waters of the Gulf of Mexico and federal regulations in Gulf waters shoreward of the 20-fathom boundary.  The proposed rule would modify the Commission’s reef fish rule as follows: Closure Removal presentation | Closure Removal presentation Version 2
        1. 68B-14.0039 (Recreational Grouper Seasons)- This section would be modified to allow year round harvesting by eliminating the annual closed season (February and March) for black grouper, red grouper, yellowfin grouper, yellowmouth grouper, red hind, rock hind, and scamp in state waters of the Gulf of Mexico, excluding Monroe County.

          If this proposed rule is approved, Commission staff would file the rule as allowed by the noticing requirements of 120.54 (6) Florida Statutes, which provides a process for adoption of federal standards without further hearing.

      2. Atlantic Vermilion Snapper - Adoption of a Federal Standard - The proposed rule amendment would achieve consistency between the Commission’s regulations and federal regulations in Atlantic waters.  The proposed rule would modify the Commission’s reef fish rule as follows: Presentation
        1. 68B-14.0038 (Recreational Snapper Seasons)- This section would be modified to allow year round harvesting by eliminating the annual recreational closed season (November 1 through March 31) for Atlantic vermilion snapper.

          If this proposed rule is approved, Commission staff would file the rule as allowed by the noticing requirements of 120.54 (6) Florida Statutes, which provides a process for adoption of federal standards without further hearing.

    4. Draft Rules
      1. Blue Runner - The South Atlantic Fishery Management Council (SAFMC) recently approved an amendment to remove blue runner from the federal snapper-grouper fishery management plan.  The SAFMC approved this amendment, in part, based on the fact that the FWC agreed to regulate blue runner harvest in federal waters of the Atlantic.  A new species chapter for blue runner is required to clarify state regulations and extend them into adjacent federal waters. Presentation
        1. 68B-61 Blue Runner (NEW) - The proposed draft rule would create a new rule chapter and would conform to the style developed for Division 68B, F.A.C., during the marine fisheries rule cleanup process.
        2. 68B-61.002 Definitions (NEW) - The proposed draft rule would define “blue runner.”
        3. 68B-61.004 Bag Limit (NEW) - The proposed draft rule would clarify the recreational daily bag limit for blue runner and extend it into all federal waters off Florida.
        4. 68B-61.009 License Requirements (NEW) - The proposed draft rule would require a saltwater products license (SPL) to harvest blue runner in quantities in excess of the recreational bag limit from state or federal waters off Florida, and for the sale of blue runner.
      2. 68-1.011 (NEW) - Exemptions from licenses and permits - During the 2013 Legislative Session, a new exemption from recreational hunting and fishing licensure requirements was created in statute.  For outdoor recreational events designed to provide rehabilitation or enjoyment to disabled veterans or active or reserve duty military personnel, the Commission is directed to issue a permit that will provide the following participants with an exemption from the requirement to purchase a recreational hunting or fishing license for the duration of the event: disabled veterans; active or reserve duty members of any branch of the United States Armed Forces, the United States Coast Guard, or the Florida National Guard; immediate family members of participating disabled veterans and military personnel; and one designated person to assist each disabled veteran.  The proposed draft rule would implement the new statutory exemption. Presentation

        Staff is requesting Commission approval to advertise the proposed rule and file for adoption as soon as possible. If the proposed rule is approved for both advertisement and final adoption, Commission staff will file the rule for adoption as allowed by s. 120.54 (3) Florida Statutes, without further hearing.

  5. Public Comment on Items Not on the Agenda
  6. Commissioner Exchange
  7. Recess Thursday’s Portion of the Meeting


    8:30 a.m., Friday, September 6, Reconvene

  8. Meeting Opening and Recognitions
    1. Retiree Recognitions - Rolando Garcia & Tim O’Meara
    2. FYCCN - Special Recognition Presentation
  9. Items Requiring Action
    1. Draft Rules
      1. 68A-4.0051 Importation of Deer, Elk and Other Wildlife Species in the Family of Cervidae- The proposed draft rule amendment would minimize the risk of Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) being brought into Florida via importation of live cervids (deer). Importation of Cervids and CWD presentation | Measures from stakeholders

        Staff is requesting Commission approval to advertise the proposed amendments and file for adoption as soon as possible. If the rule amendments are approved for both advertisement and final adoption, Commission staff will file the rule for adoption as allowed by s. 120.54(3) Florida Statutes, without further public hearing.

    2. Budget and Legislative Issues
      1. Budget Items Budget Items Presentation | Budget Items Presentation Version 2
        1. Potential Reductions for 2014 Session of the Florida Legislature - Staff will present a proposed list of potential budget reductions. Potential Budget Reductions | Potential Budget Redirects
        2. New Budget Issues for 2014 Session of the Florida Legislature - Staff will present a proposed lists of budget issues for the Fiscal Year 2014-2015 Legislative Budget Request. New Budget Issues for the 2014 Session | New Budget Issues for the 2014 Session Version 2
      2. Legislative Proposals for 2014 Session - Staff will present issues to submit to the Legislature and Governor during the 2014 Session that would modify Florida law dealing with fish and wildlife issues. 2014 Session Proposals Presentation | County Vessel Registration Revenue Uses | Hunting License on Public Lands | Repeal of the Special Recreational Spiny Lobster License | Reference to DCF Change | Online Boater Education Course | Session Proposals Summary | Session Proposals Summary Version 2 | Hunting License on Public Lands Version 2
  10. Staff Report
    1. Everglades Update
    2. Future Commission Meeting Topics
  11. Public Comment on Items Not on the Agenda
  12. Commissioner Exchange
  13. Adjournment

    The Next Regular Commission meeting is scheduled November 20-21, 2013 in Ft. Lauderdale, commencing at 8:30 a.m.

Consent Agenda

  1. 68D-24.010 - Pinellas County Boating Restricted Areas - The final public hearing on this subject began on June 11, 2013, at the Lakeland Commission meeting. An error with the digital mapping software used to create the maps for the Notice of Proposed Rule has resulted in the need to make small changes to the rule language and maps to ensure their accuracy.  Staff is requesting permission to publish a Notice of Change and file the final rule as changed by the Notice of Change. 68D-24.010 Notice of Change
  2. 68A-5-006 Designation of Free-Freshwater Fishing Days; License Requirements and Regulation Compliance and 68B-2.009 – Designation of Free-Saltwater Fishing Days; License Requirement and Regulation Compliance (NEW) - The 2013 Florida Legislature approved two additional free fishing days each for saltwater and freshwater as provided by 379.354, Florida Statutes for a total of four days annually. Thus, staff proposes to provide two additional saltwater and two additional freshwater free fishing days for 2013.  The 2013 additional days are proposed as October 12 and November 30 for saltwater, and November 29 and December 28 for freshwater.  In addition, this item would permanently set all four saltwater days in rule and add the two additional freshwater days in rule.  Beginning in 2014, these days for saltwater are proposed as the first Saturday and Sunday in June, the first Saturday in September, and the Saturday after Thanksgiving.  For freshwater, the first Sunday in April, and the second Sunday in June are proposed in addition to the existing days, the first Saturday in April, and the second Saturday in June.  These days would be free for fishing and taking fish recreationally.  No recreational license or permit or payment of license or permit fee would be required to fish on these days, however all other harvest restrictions such as size and bag limits apply on these days. Free Fishing Days presentation
  3. Alligator Management Program - The proposed draft rules were presented at the June Commission meeting in Lakeland and advertised.  The final rules, if adopted, would make changes to the Commission’s Alligator Farming Program and Private Lands Alligator Management Program.
    1. 68A-25.004 Regulations Governing the Operation of Alligator Farms - The proposed final rule would require alligator farm permittees to be at least 18 years old; require they make records available upon request; clarify farm fencing requirements and the minimum space requirements for alligator pens; and modify the Alligator Farm Annual Report form. Notice of Proposed Rule | Form 1000AF
    2. 68A-25.032 Regulations Governing the Establishment of Alligator Management Programs - The proposed final rule would allow the capture and release of alligators on the same permitted property only if non-injurious capture methods are used, and modify the Private Lands Alligator Management Program Application form. Notice of Proposed Rule | Form 1000PW
  4. Review and approval of anticipated late season migratory bird hunting regulations for the 2013-2014 season.  This includes hunting seasons and bag limits for ducks, geese, and coots. Summary of Potential Changes to Migratory Bird Hunting Seasons, 2013-2014 | Summary of Potential Changes to Migratory Bird Hunting Seasons, 2013-2014 Version 2
  5. 68A-27.007 Permits and Authorizations for the Take of Florida Endangered and Threatened Species - Staff provided an update on imperiled species management planning at the June Commission meeting in Lakeland.  A proposed rule change to allow an additional one year to finalize the details associated with administering the wildlife best management practice program, including adoption of the BMPs into rule, was approved and advertised.  This request is for final adoption of that rule change which would extend the completion date to November 2014. Best Management Practices Summary | Permits and Authorizations for the Take of Florida Endangered and Threatened Species
  6. 2014 Commission Meeting Dates and Locations. 2014 Meeting Dates and Locations

    Staff proposes adding a half-day workshop on April 15 to the April Commission Meeting



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