1998 Regular Session
To: Conservation and Water Resources
By: Representatives Compretta, Dedeaux
House Bill 1250
(As Passed the House)
AN ACT TO AMEND SECTION 49-15-313, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, TO PROVIDE A FREE SALTWATER FISHING DAY DURING NATIONAL FISHING WEEK IN JULY; TO AUTHORIZE THE COMMISSION ON MARINE RESOURCES TO ENTER INTO RECIPROCAL AGREEMENTS WITH OTHER STATES BORDERING THE GULF OF MEXICO REGARDING THE AMOUNT OF SALTWATER SPORT OR RECREATIONAL SALTWATER FISHING LICENSE FEES; AND FOR RELATED PURPOSES.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MISSISSIPPI:
SECTION 1. Section 49-15-313, Mississippi Code of 1972, is amended as follows:
49-15-313. (1) Any resident between the ages of sixteen (16) and sixty-five (65) years, as defined in Section 49-7-3, fishing in the marine waters of the state, shall obtain a saltwater sports fishing license for a fee of Four Dollars ($4.00). This license shall be valid in any waters south of Interstate 10. Any resident citizen who is blind, paraplegic, or a multiple amputee, or who has been adjudged by the Veterans Administration as having a total service-connected disability, or has been adjudged totally disabled by the Social Security Administration shall not be required to purchase or have in his possession a saltwater sports fishing license while engaged in such activities. Any resident exempt under this section shall have on his person while fishing proof of residency and age or disability.
(2) Except as otherwise provided in subsection (10) of this section, the commission shall prescribe the forms, types and fees for nonresident saltwater sports fishing licenses except that the fee for a nonresident saltwater sports fishing license shall not be less than Twenty Dollars ($20.00). The commission shall require a nonresident to purchase a nonresident freshwater fishing license and a nonresident saltwater sports fishing license if the nonresident's state requires both licenses for a nonresident to fish in its marine waters.
(3) All vessels engaged in charter boat fishing, party boat fishing, head boat and guide boat fishing shall be issued a separate annual license by the commission at a fee of Two Hundred Dollars ($200.00). Crew members and customers of the licensed vessels shall not be required to purchase an individual resident or nonresident saltwater fishing license while sponsored by the licensed vessels. An operator of a licensed vessel shall be required to report the number of customers to the department as required by the commission and the information shall be kept confidential and shall not be released, except to other fisheries management agencies or as statistical data.
(4) The saltwater sports fishing license is required for hook and line fishing only.
(5) Any resident who purchases a lifetime sportsman's license, in accordance with Section 49-7-153, shall be entitled to fish in the marine salt waters of the state and shall be exempt from the purchase of a sport saltwater fishing license.
(6) Any person authorized to issue a license may collect and retain, for each saltwater fishing license issued, the additional fee authorized under Section 49-7-17.
(7) The fees collected from the sale of resident and nonresident saltwater sports fishing licenses shall be deposited into the Seafood Fund and shall be used solely for the management of marine resources.
(8) Participants in the Very Special Fishing Olympics are exempt from this section.
(9) The commission shall designate a free saltwater fishing day during National Fishing Week in the month of July to allow any resident or nonresident to fish in the marine waters of the state for a one-day period without the requirement of obtaining or possessing the saltwater fishing license provided under this section.
(10) The commission may enter into a reciprocal agreement with any state or states bordering the Gulf of Mexico regarding the amount of saltwater sport fishing license fees or recreational saltwater fishing license fees.
SECTION 2. This act shall take effect and be in force from and after July 1, 1998.