[58 PA. CODE CH. 147]
[34 Pa.B. 1946]
To effectively manage the wildlife resources of this Commonwealth, the Game Commission (Commission), at its January 27, 2004, meeting, proposed the following amendments:
Amend § 147.672 (relating to definitions) to expand the list of definitions; § 147.673 (relating to eligibility and application for DMAP) to remove limitations and expand eligibility for the Deer Management Assistance Program (DMAP); § 147.674 (relating to issuance of DMAP harvest permits) to establish separate fees related to submitting a DMAP coupon for a DMAP harvest permit for residents and nonresidents; and § 147.676 (relating to unlawful acts) to make it unlawful for a nonresident to apply for or possess a resident DMAP harvest permit.
The proposed rulemaking will have no adverse impact on the wildlife resources of this Commonwealth.
The authority for the proposed rulemaking is 34 Pa.C.S. (relating to Game and Wildlife Code) (code).
The proposed rulemaking was made public at the January 27, 2004, meeting of the Commission. Comments can be sent until April 16, 2004, to the Director, Information and Education, Game Commission, 2001 Elmerton Avenue, Harrisburg, PA 17110-9797.
The DMAP has been in effect for almost a full season and has already proven to be an asset to both the public and private landowners as a tool for the future management of local white-tailed deer herds on lands where excessive deer numbers have compromised the landowners' land uses and other interests. In response to these successes, the Commission has identified a few changes that could make the DMAP even more successful in the future.
2. Purpose and Authority
When the Commission first approved DMAP regulations, they included language limiting DMAP applications to public land and private land enrolled in one of the Commission's public access programs for the 2003-2004 license year only. This language will no longer be in effect for the 2004-2005 license year; therefore, the Commission is proposing to amend § 147.673 by removing this language. In addition, the Commission is proposing to amend § 147.673 to expand eligibility for the DMAP by allowing more private land, such as eligible hunting clubs, to be enrolled in the DMAP.
The Commission is proposing to amend § 147.672 to expand the list of definitions to include ''hunting club'' and ''private land.'' Adding the definition of ''hunting club'' will permit the Commission to effectively limit the types and size of clubs eligible for the DMAP. Defining ''private land'' will permit the Commission to deny eligibility to private landowner applicants where hunting rights on that land are leased or where there is a fee charged for hunting.
Current regulations do not establish separate fees for residents and nonresident hunters who submit the DMAP coupons for the DMAP harvest permits. To stay consistent with related fee scales for antlerless deer licenses, the Commission is proposing to amend § 147.674 to establish separate fees for residents and nonresident hunters who submit a DMAP coupon for a DMAP harvest permit.
Currently, there is no distinction in the regulations between a resident and nonresident DMAP harvest permit. If the separate fee schedule for resident and nonresident hunters is finally adopted, the regulations would provide no limitations to prevent a nonresident hunter from applying for or possessing a resident DMAP harvest permit. Therefore, the Commission is proposing to amend § 147.676 to make it unlawful for a nonresident to apply for or possess a resident DMAP harvest permit.
Section 2901(b) of the code (relating to authority to issue permits) provides ''the Commission may, as deemed necessary to properly manage the game or wildlife resources, promulgate regulations for the issuance of any permit and promulgate regulations to control the activities which may be performed under authority of any permit issued.'' Section 322(c)(4) of the code (relating to powers and duties of commission) specifically authorizes the Commission to ''define geographic limitations or restrictions.'' Section 2102(a) of the code (relating to regulations) provides that ''the Commission shall promulgate such regulations as it deems necessary and appropriate concerning game or wildlife and hunting or furtaking in this Commonwealth, including regulations relating to the protection, preservation and management of game or wildlife and game or wildlife habitat, permitting or prohibiting hunting or furtaking, the ways, manner, methods and means of hunting or furtaking, and the health and safety of persons who hunt or take wildlife or may be in the vicinity of persons who hunt or take game or wildlife in this Commonwealth.'' The amendments to §§ 147.672, 147.673, 147.674 and 147.676 are proposed under this authority.
3. Regulatory Requirements
The proposed rulemaking will define and limit eligibility for the DMAP, establish separate fees related to submitting a DMAP coupon for a DMAP harvest permit for residents and nonresidents and make it unlawful for a nonresident to apply for or possess a resident DMAP harvest permit.
4. Persons Affected
Persons wishing to apply to have their land enrolled in DMAP or persons wishing to submit a DMAP coupon for a DMAP harvest permit will be affected by the proposed rulemaking.
5. Cost and Paperwork Requirements
The proposed rulemaking should not result in additional cost or paperwork.
6. Effective Date
The proposed rulemaking will be effective on final-form publication in the Pennsylvania Bulletin and will remain in effect until changed by the Commission.
7. Contact Person
For further information regarding the proposed rulemaking, contact Michael A. Dubaich, Director, Bureau of Law Enforcement, 2001 Elmerton Avenue, Harrisburg, PA 17110-9797, (717) 783-6526.
VERNON R. ROSS,
Fiscal Note: 48-182. No fiscal impact; (8) recommends adoption.
TITLE 58. RECREATION
PART III. GAME COMMISSION
CHAPTER 147. SPECIAL PERMITS
Subchapter R. DEER CONTROL
DEER MANAGEMENT ASSISTANCE PROGRAM PERMITS
§ 147.672. Definitions.
The following words and terms, when used in this section and §§ 147.671 and 147.673--147.676, have the following meanings unless the context clearly indicates otherwise:
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Hunting club--A corporation or legal cooperative which owns 1,000 or more contiguous acres in fee title, was established prior to January 1, 2000, and has provided its club charter and list of current members to the Commission.
Private land--Land not defined as public land where the hunting rights are not leased or there is no fee charged for hunting.
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§ 147.673. Eligibility and application for DMAP.
(a) [In the 2003-2004 license year, DMAP applications will only be accepted for public land, and private land enrolled in one of the Commission's public access programs (Farm Game, Forest Game or Safety Zone--P.1-2-3).] Owners or lessees of private land, hunting clubs or authorized officers or employees of political subdivisions or government agencies shall apply for the DMAP in a manner and on a form required by the Director. Separate applications for DMAP areas will not be accepted for areas that are within 1 air mile of another area that is owned, leased or controlled by the same person, political subdivision or government agency without an approved management plan.
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§ 147.674. Issuance of DMAP harvest permits.
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(c) Coupon holders shall mail the completed coupon to the Commission along with a [$6] check or money order payable to the ''Pennsylvania Game Commission.'' The fee for the coupon is $6 for residents and $26 for nonresidents.
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§ 147.676. Unlawful acts.
It is unlawful to:
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(8) [Fail to comply with any other provisions of §§ 147.672--147.675] Apply for, receive or possess a resident DMAP permit if you are a nonresident.
(9) Fail to comply with any other provisions of §§ 147.672--147.675.
[Pa.B. Doc. No. 04-605. Filed for public inspection April 9, 2004, 9:00 a.m.]
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