Presenter: John Young

Commission Agenda Item No. 8
Action
Statewide Fur-Bearing Animal Proclamation
November 2003

I. Executive Summary: This item reorganizes existing regulations into a single section governing possession and sale of fur-bearing animals, and allows trappers to possess pelts year-round, provided the carcass or pelt was lawfully taken during the open trapping season.

II. Discussion: Under Parks and Wildlife Code, Chapter 71, the Commission may regulate the taking, possession, propagation, transportation, exportation, importation, sale, and offering for sale of fur-bearing animals, pelts, and carcasses as the Commission considers necessary to manage fur-bearing animals or to protect human health or property.

Under current regulations, persons who take fur-bearing animals under a trapping license during the open trapping season are not allowed to sell the carcasses or pelts between April 6 and October 31. While deliberating adoption of proposed amendments to the Statewide Fur-bearing Animal Proclamation at the August 2003 Commission meeting, the Commission heard public comment from a member of the Texas Trappers and Fur Hunters Association, who requested that trappers be permitted to maintain possession of pelts for a longer period of time in order to take advantage of seasonal market fluctuations in fur prices. Staff was authorized by the Executive Director to withdraw the existing proposal and republish a new proposal in the Texas Register for public comment. The new proposal, in addition to the changes contained in the original proposal, would allow trappers to possess pelts year-round. The proposal appeared in the October 3, 2003 issue of the Texas Register (28 TexReg 8569). A summary of public comment will be provided at the time of the hearing.

III. Recommendation: Staff recommends that the Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission adopt the following motion:

“The Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission adopts an amendment to 31 TAC §65.377 (located at Exhibit A), concerning the Statewide Fur-bearing Animal Proclamation, as published in the October 3, 2003, issue of the Texas Register (28 TexReg 8569).”

Attachments – 2

  1. Exhibit A – Proposed Rule
  2. Exhibit B – Fiscal Note

Commission Agenda Item No. 8
Exhibit A

Texas Parks and Wildlife Department
Wildlife

Statewide Fur-Bearing Animal Proclamation
Proposal Preamble

1. Introduction.
The Texas Parks and Wildlife Department proposes new §65.377, concerning the Statewide Fur-bearing Animal Proclamation.

New §65.377, concerning Sale or Purchase of Fur-bearing Animals, restructures the section to increase clarity. The new section eliminates current restrictions to allow trappers to sell pelts year-round and fur dealers to purchase pelts year-round, which is necessary to allow trappers and dealers a mechanism to take advantage of seasonal fluctuations in market prices. The new section is generally necessary because it makes intuitive sense to place all regulatory provisions concerning possession of live fur-bearing animals in a single section for ease of use. It is also necessary to set forth the various privileges afforded by each license type.

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

3. Public Benefit – Cost Note.
Mr. Macdonald also has determined that for each of the first five years the rule as proposed is in effect:

(A) The public benefit anticipated as a result of enforcing or administering the rule as proposed will be clearer and more user-friendly regulations.

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

(C) The department has not drafted a local employment impact statement under the Administrative Procedures Act, §2001.022, as the agency has determined that the rule 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 rule.

4. Request for Public Comment.
Comments on the proposed rule may be submitted to Robert Macdonald, Texas Parks and Wildlife Department 4200 Smith School Road, Austin, Texas, 78744; (512) 389-4992 (e-mail: robert.macdonald@tpwd.state.tx.us).

5. Statutory Authority.
The new section is proposed under Parks and Wildlife Code, Chapter 71, which authorizes the commission to regulate the taking, possession, propagation, transportation, exportation, importation, sale, and offering for sale of fur-bearing animals, pelts, and carcasses as the commission considers necessary to manage fur-bearing animals or to protect human health or property, and to provide for permit application forms, fees, procedures, and reports.

The new section affects Parks and Wildlife Code, Chapter 71.

§65.377. Sale or Purchase of Fur-bearing Animals.

(a) Sale of Fur-bearing animals, their carcasses and pelts, and finished products.

(1) No person other than a licensed fur-bearing animal propagator may sell a live fur-bearing animal.

(2) No person other than a licensed trapper or wholesale fur dealer may sell the carcass or pelt of a fur-bearing animal.

(3) Finished products may be sold by anyone.

(b) Purchase of fur-bearing animals, their carcasses and pelts, and finished products.

(1) Except as provided in §65.378 (c) of this title (relating to Importation, Exportation, and Release of Fur-bearing Animals), no person other than a licensed fur-bearing animal propagator or a person holding a permit issued under Parks and Wildlife Code, Chapter 43, Subchapter C, may purchase a live fur-bearing animal.

(2) No person other than a licensed wholesale fur dealer or a consumer may purchase the carcass or pelt of a fur-bearing animal. A consumer must maintain proof of purchase until the pelt becomes a finished product or the carcass is cleaned for cooking or storage at the consumer’s permanent residence.

(3) A trapper may possess and sell the carcass or pelt of a fur-bearing animal lawfully taken during an open trapping season at any time.

(4) A wholesale fur dealer may purchase the carcass or pelt of a fur-bearing animal lawfully taken during an open trapping season at any time.

(5) Finished products may be purchased by anyone.

(c) A person who sells fur-bearing animals prepared for immediate consumption may purchase the carcass of a fur-bearing animal only from a wholesale dealer.

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


Commission Agenda Item No. 8
Exhibit B

Item Sponsor: John Young
Note Prepared By: Robert Macdonald

Fiscal Note
Statewide Fur-Bearing Animal Proclamation
November 2003

Brief Description: Item modifies the Statewide Fur-bearing Animal Proclamation to consolidate all provisions relating to purchase and sale in one section, and to allow year-round possession of carcasses and pelts by trappers. No fiscal impacts anticipated.


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