Presenter: Jerry Cooke

Commission Agenda Item No. 10
Action
Deer Management Proclamation
August 2001

I. Discussion: Under Parks and Wildlife Code, Chapter 43, Subchapter R, the Commission is authorized to issue permits for deer management, and to establish conditions governing such permits (Deer Management Permit). The Commission at its May 2001 meeting adopted a suite of amendments affecting the scientific breeder permit regulations, the deer management permit regulations, and the Triple T permit regulations. As a result of public comment received during the rulemaking process, two issues arose that were beyond the Commission’s ability to act upon at the May meeting, both involving the deer management permit regulations. The first issue related to the release date for wild deer temporarily detained under a permit. At present, deer must be released by March 1; however, the trapping period for Triple T permits extends until March 31, creating the possibility that deer held and bred under a DMP could be released and then re-trapped and transplanted. In response, the Commission authorized staff to publish a proposed amendment that would fix the mandatory release date at April 1. The second issue involved the DMP approval process. Under the rule as adopted in May, only a department biologist classified Manager II or higher is authorized to approve a DMP. Following the Commission meeting, staff became aware that members of the regulated community believed that the action taken in May to create broader approval authority for Triple T permits was likewise supposed to have extended to the DMP regulations, as well. To clear up any misunderstandings, staff withdrew the pertinent section from the adoption and included it in the proposal located at Exhibit A. The proposed amendments appeared in the July 27, 2001 issue of the Texas Register (26 TexReg 5608). A summary of all public comment will be available at the time of the meeting.

II. Recommendation: Staff recommends that the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department adopt the following motion:

“The Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission adopts amendments to 31 TAC §§65.132 and 65.136 (located at Exhibit A), concerning the Deer Management Proclamation, with changes to the proposed text as published in the July 27, 2001, issue of the Texas Register (26 TexReg 5608).”

Attachments – 2
1. Exhibit A – Proposed Regulations
2. Exhibit B – Fiscal Note (Available upon request)


Commission Agenda Item No. 10
Exhibit A

Deer Management Proclamation
Proposal Preamble

1. Introduction.

The Texas Parks and Wildlife Department proposes amendments to §65.132 and §65.136, concerning Deer Management Permit. The amendment to §65.132, concerning Permit Application and Fees, would establish a one-year period of validity for permits issued under the subchapter and would allow more department employees to approve deer management plans. The amendment is necessary to establish an explicit period of validity for permits, and to give the department the ability to avoid potential administrative bottlenecks with respect to the application and approval process. The amendment to §65.136, concerning Release, would alter the current requirement that deer held under a deer management permit be released no earlier than March 1 and replace that date with April 1. The amendment is necessary to ensure that deer held under a deer management permit are not subject to trapping activities under a permit to Trap, Transport, and Transplant Game Animals and Game Birds (Triple T permit). The department's trapping period for Triple T deer ends March 31. The amendment is intended to prevent the deer management permit from being used simply as a method for producing deer for relocation.

2. Fiscal Note.

Robert Macdonald, regulations coordinator, has determined that for each of the first five years that the rules as proposed are in effect, there will be no fiscal implications to state or local governments as a result of enforcing or administering the rules.

3. Public Benefit - Cost Note.

Mr. Macdonald has also determined that for each of the first five years the rules as proposed are in effect:

(A) The public benefit anticipated as a result of enforcing or administering the rules as proposed will be a more efficient process for quickly getting permits to qualified applicants and the preservation of the legislative intent of Parks and Wildlife Code, Chapter 43, Subchapter R, which was to allow for reproductive management of resident deer on private property.

(B) There will be no effect on small businesses, microbusinesses, or persons required to comply with the rules as proposed.

(C) The department has not filed a local impact statement with the Texas Workforce Commission as required by the Administrative Procedures Act, §2001.022, as the agency has determined that the rules as proposed will not impact local economies.

(D) The department has determined that there will not be a taking of private real property, as defined by Government Code, Chapter 2007, as a result of the proposed rules.

4. Request for Public Comments.

Comments on the proposed rules may be submitted to Jerry Cooke, Texas Parks and Wildlife Department, 4200 Smith School Road, Austin, Texas 78744; (512) 389-4774 or 1-800-792-1112 extension 4774 (e-mail: jerry.cooke@tpwd.state.tx.us).

5. Statutory Authority.

The rules are proposed under Parks and Wildlife Code, §43.603, which authorizes the commission to establish conditions governing a permit issued under Parks and Wildlife Code, Chapter 43, Subchapter R.

The proposed rules affect Parks and Wildlife Code, Chapter 43, Subchapter R.

§65.132. Permit Application and Fees.

(a) Applicants for a DMP shall complete and submit an application on a form supplied by the department. Applications for a DMP shall be accompanied by a deer management plan containing the information stipulated by the application form and the nonrefundable fee as specified in §53.8 of this title (relating to Miscellaneous Wildlife Licenses and Permits). Incomplete applications will be returned to the applicant and will not be processed until complete. No DMP may be issued until the applicant's deer management plan has been approved by a Wildlife Division technician or biologist assigned to write wildlife management plans [department employee classified as [Conservation Scientist VI or higher].

(b) A permit under this subchapter is valid from September 1 of one year through August 31 of the immediately following year.

§65.136. Release.

(a) Release of deer shall be effected by removing, for a continuous distance of no less than 100 yards, those components of a pen that serve to maintain deer in a state of detention within the pen. Such components shall be removed for no fewer than 60 consecutive days. The provisions of this subsection may be altered, provided the specific details of the release technique are included in the applicant's deer management plan and are approved by the department.

(b) No deer held under a DMP shall be released between September 1 and April 1, [March 1,] unless such release is approved by the department in the applicant's management plan.

This agency hereby certifies that the proposal has been reviewed by legal counsel and found to be within the agency's authority to adopt.

Issued in Austin, Texas, on


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