Hunters, Anglers Take Note of New Legislation

The North Dakota Game and Fish Department tracked 40 outdoors-related bills during the 2019 legislative session, 21 of which were passed by both chambers and signed into law.

The following bills take effect Aug. 1, unless the bill includes an emergency clause which indicates it is already in effect.

HB 1021 – Included in the Information Technology Department’s appropriation, during the 2019-21 interim, a 14 member land access committee (with nine voting members) will study access to public and private lands for hunting, trapping, fishing and related issues, including trespass violations and penalties, and provide recommendations regarding a land access database with capabilities of electronic posting. The study committee may establish a trial electronic posting and hunter access information system in up to three counties prior to Aug. 1, 2020, and report findings and recommendations to the next legislative assembly.

HB 1066 – Returns the funding limit to the North Dakota Outdoor Heritage Fund to $20 million per fiscal year.

HB 1209 – Allows the use of dogs in the recovery of big game animals.

HB 1246 – Defines the eligibility requirements relating to gratis licenses for hunting big game and to provide a legislative study.

HB 1286 – Amends the century code relating to law enforcement agencies reporting seizures and forfeitures.

HB 1366 – Allows the use of a telescopic sight on a crossbow with a maximum power of 8×32.

HB 1383 – Alters the North Dakota Public Service Commission’s century code relating to mitigating environmental impacts associated with energy development.

HB 1412 – Allows the use of night vision, thermal vision or infrared light with a power source of not more than six volts while hunting coyote, fox, raccoon or beaver during the open season, and on a predatory animal attacking and attempting to destroy poultry, livestock or other property.

HB 1462 – Changes the seven white-tailed deer licenses to four any-whitetail and three any-antlered deer licenses, that are provided to the outdoor adventure foundation to be used by youth with life-threatening illnesses.

HB 1503 – Requires an individual who enters private property and installs a device for observing, recording or photographing wildlife to either receive written permission from the landowner, or identifies the device with a permanently affixed metal or plastic tag with a registration number issued by the Game and Fish Department, or the individual’s name, address and telephone number.

SB 2017 – Appropriates $83,803,632 to the Game and Fish Department for the biennium beginning July 1, 2019 and ending June 30, 2021.

SB 2034 – Defines the terms “firearm” or “weapon” and clarifies who can carry, including a minor under age 15 carrying a muzzleloader under direct supervision.

SB 2055 – Allows Game and Fish to get approval from either the legislative assembly or budget section for each land acquisition of at least 10 acres or $10,000.

SB 2058 – Amends the century code relating to the Outdoor Heritage Fund, whereas grant applications that are eligible to be forwarded to the North Dakota Industrial Commission must receive favorable recommendation from a majority of the outdoor heritage advisory board members.

SB 2138 – Allows advanced practice registered nurses and physician assistants, in addition to a physician, to verify the physical condition necessary for individuals to qualify for a shoot from a stationary motor vehicle permit.

SB 2165 – Amends the tax department’s section of the century code relating to gross receipts, specifically that gross receipts does not include the amount of compensation received from an insurance company for the loss of a stolen or destroyed watercraft that had been previously taxed if that compensation is used as a trade-in credit on the purchase of a replacement watercraft.

SB 2239 – Defines open records laws/exemptions of animal tracking data bases for animal health purposes, including state and federal agencies would be able to collect information to assist in animal disease control or tracking an animal disease. Declared an emergency measure.

SB 2261 – Amends the energy and conversion and transmission facilities section of the century code, relating to conditions imposed on designation of sites, corridors and routes.

SB 2293 – Creates an aquatic nuisance species program fund in the state treasury. Effective Jan. 1, 2020, establishes an ANS fee of $15 for each motorized watercraft registered in North Dakota to run concurrent with the three-year watercraft registration period. For motorized watercraft operated on waters in North Dakota but not licensed in North Dakota, an ANS fee of $15 to be paid for each calendar year and to display an ANS sticker on their watercraft. Effective April 1, 2020, establishes a $2 surcharge on each resident fishing license and combination license, with the exception of the resident 65 and older fishing license, permanently or totally disabled fishing license, or a disabled veteran fishing license. In addition, includes a $3 surcharge on each nonresident fishing license and each nonresident waterfowl license.

SB 2342 – Any boat operated between the hours of midnight and 5 a.m. may not produce a noise in excess of 88 decibels for more than 10 minutes.

SB 2358 – Relates to Red River Valley water supply project contract terms, elimination of voter approval requirements and notice of proposed water management systems.