affected by the hurricane as well.
Also, pursuant to LSA R.S. 56:8 and 251 et seq. and the rules and regulations promulgated pursuant thereto, the Secretary of the Department of Wildlife and Fisheries does hereby amend that portion of LAC 76:V.701.A.11.b.ii., which states that “Lost or stolen tags will not be replaced”, to provide as follows: Alligator hunters who have lost their assigned alligator harvest tags and/or alligator hunting licenses due to the impacts of Hurricane Gustav and Hurricane Ike can apply in writing to the Department of Wildlife and Fisheries for replacement tags and licenses.
Affected alligator hunters must apply to the New Iberia Office at 2415 Darnall Road, New Iberia, LA, 70560. The application can be in letter form and must confirm that the tags and licenses were lost due to the impacts of Hurricane Gustav and Hurricane Ike. Once replacement alligator harvest tags are issued, the original harvest tags cannot be used, and use of those tags will constitute a Class 2 violation. Further, all lost or stolen tags must be reported to the department. All unused tags must be returned to the department within 15 days following the close of the season. The statewide 2008 wild alligator harvest season will close on October 19, 2008.
This Declaration of Emergency shall expire on October 19, 2008.
Robert J. Barham
DECLARATION OF EMERGENCY
Department of Wildlife and Fisheries
Wildlife and Fisheries Commission
Oyster Cargo Vessels (LAC 76:VII.523)
The oyster fishery in the state of Louisiana is cooperatively managed and regulated by the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries, the Wildlife and Fisheries Commission and the Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals, Office of Public Health Molluscan Shellfish Program with oversight from the U. S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). The National Shellfish Sanitation Program (NSSP) 2005 Model Ordinance is the federal/state cooperative program recognized by the FDA and the Interstate Shellfish Sanitation Conference (ISSC) for the sanitary control of shellfish produced and sold for human consumption.
In order to comply with FDA requirements, in June of 2008 the Office of Public Health Molluscan Shellfish Program will promulgate additional rules based on the Vibrio parahaemolyticus control plan. Under this control plan, shell-stock harvested in Louisiana for raw consumption during the months of May through October must be placed under mechanical refrigeration at an air temperature not to exceed 45 degrees F within five hours from the time harvesting begins. This Rule is to become effective October 10, 2008.
Due to the distances and travel time involved in transporting oysters from many of the private leases and public oyster seed grounds in the remote oyster growing areas of the state, it is difficult to have shell-stock off-loaded
at dockside and under refrigeration within five hours. While some larger oyster harvest vessels have the ability to place mechanical refrigeration on board in order to meet the refrigeration requirements, on-board refrigeration is not an option for smaller vessels and is cost prohibitive in some cases.
In order to provide a means of compliance with the five hour refrigeration requirements, the Wildlife and Fisheries Commission anticipates authorization, through pending legislation (HB 1142, Representative St. Germain), to adopt rules for the permitting of oyster cargo vessels. Such permitted vessels will be allowed to accept containerized and tagged molluscan species directly from oyster harvest vessels and placed them under refrigeration on board the permitted cargo vessel or to transport to dockside refrigeration within five hours from the beginning of harvest.
Standard rulemaking processes and delays will not permit final promulgation of this Rule by June 2008; and failure to promulgate this Rule in time for the FDA requirement to take effect will result in imminent peril to public health, the oyster fishery, as well as individual fishermen, who will be unable to comply with the FDA requirement without the mechanism of the oyster cargo vessel. Therefore, it is necessary that this regulation be enacted initially by Declaration of Emergency pending promulgation of a permanent rule.
The process for Wildlife and Fisheries Commission adoption of rules for the permitting of Oyster Cargo Vessels can be expedited under the emergency provisions of the Administrative Procedure Act, R. S. 49:953(B).
WILDLIFE AND FISHERIES
Part VII. Fish and Other Aquatic Life
§523.Oyster Cargo Vessels
A.Policy. The Oyster Cargo Vessel (OCV) permit is intended to assist oyster harvesters with meeting refrigeration requirements as set forth in the Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals Shellfish Sanitation Code (Title 51) and to facilitate harvest and transport of shell-stock harvested from Louisiana water bottoms. It is also intended to provide an effective method of regulating the transfer of oysters from harvest vessels to cargo vessels which will land or off-load oysters. Violation of any provision of the rules, regulations or statutes concerning the oyster cargo vessel permit by the permittee, oyster harvester or vessel owner while operating under the OCV permit shall result in suspension and/or revocation of the permit in addition to any citations resulting from activities.
1.Permits shall be available from the Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) licensing office in Baton Rouge at any time during regular business hours. The OCV permit may be purchased at any time of the year for the current license year and from November fifteenth for the immediately following year, and shall be valid for up to one calendar year beginning January 1 and expiring on December 31 of the same calendar year. The annual fee per permit shall be $250 for residents and $1105 for nonresidents.
2.Permits shall be issued in the name of the vessel owner and shall have the vessel identified on the license.
Louisiana Register Vol. 34, No. 10 October 20, 2008