MINUTES

BOARD OF THE DEPARTMENT OF NATURAL RESOURCES

Rembert C. Dennis Building, Room 335
Columbia, South Carolina

Friday, June 16, 2000
10:00 a.m.


The regular meeting of the Board of the South Carolina Department of Natural Resources was held at 10:00 a.m. on Friday, June 16, 2000, at the Rembert C. Dennis Building, Columbia, South Carolina. Notice of the date, time and place of the meeting was posted and mailed to the news media. Chairman Dr. Joab Lesesne presided at the meeting. Board Members present included Ben Gregg, Russell Holliday, Malloy McEachin and Dr. Douglas Rucker. Vice Chairman Leary and Board Member Danny Ford were absent. Dr. Paul A. Sandifer and staff members of the Department of Natural Resources were present at the meeting as were various guests.


I. Call to Order

Chairman Lesesne called the meeting to order at 10:00 a.m. and welcomed everyone to the meeting.


II. Meditation

Chairman Lesesne asked for a moment of silent meditation.


III. Introduction of Guests

Chairman Lesesne asked Cary Chamblee to introduce any guests who were present. Mr. Chamblee introduced Pat Robertson, The State newspaper; Angela Viney, Director of SC Wildlife Federation; and Dr. Eric Skidmore.


IV. Constituency Comments

Mr. Chamblee stated that there two requests for constituency comment made in advance by David O'Neal and Jimmy Leland. Mr. O'Neal's comments were directed toward support of the Road Hunting bill and the antlerless deer tag programs.

Mr. Leland's comments were directed toward the three mile radar line, night trawler patrols and enforcement of the new net law. Mr. Gregg asked John Miglarese to respond to the comments. Dr. Miglarese stated that the radar line is Board Policy 601.01 and this topic will be on the MAC agenda at their next meeting. Dr. Miglarese's recommended that the Board allow this topic to go through the advisory committee process.


V. Approval of Minutes

Chairman Lesesne asked if there were any corrections or additions to the minutes of the May 19, 2000, meeting. Mr. Gregg made a motion that the minutes of the May 19, 2000, meeting be approved as amended. Ms. Holliday seconded the motion and the motion carried unanimously.


VI. Presentations/Commendations

A. 1999 Fisheries Conservationist of the Year Award

Dr. Sandifer called on Wade Bales, representing the SC Chapter of the American Fisheries Society, to make this presentation. Mr. Bales stated that this award is presented to individuals or groups that promote wise use and conservation activities. The 1999 Fisheries Conservationist of the Year Award was presented to the Striper Kings of Greenville.

Dr. Sandifer stated that on May 26, he represented the Board at a ribbon cutting ceremony for the reopening of Lake Cherokee and presented Senator Peeler with the Board's Certificate of Meritorious Service in recognition of the leadership he demonstrated on several issues related to the Department but specifically the Boating Safety Act of 1999, Drew's Law, and heading the effort for the passage of the Coastal Fisheries Act.

Dr. Sandifer also attended the retirement banquet for Coy Johnston on June 8. Mr. Johnston was recognized for his 27 years of volunteer service to the agency and his service on the Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries Advisory Committee and the Law Enforcement Advisory Committee. Dr. Sandifer presented the Honorary Lt. Col. Award to Mr. Johnston. Staff also presented Mr. Johnston with a portrait.

Dr. Sandifer commended Ester Haymond and Jim Quinn for their excellent work on the Department's behalf before the Supreme Court regarding the Sea Pines case.


VII. Reopening of the Minutes

After unanimous consent the approval of the minutes was reopened. Dr. Rucker requested that a clarification be made regarding the regulation change for Sunrise Lake. Mr. Gregg made a motion that an amendment be made to the minutes of the May 19, 2000, meeting. The regulations will be clarified to allow electric trolling motors only. Dr. Rucker seconded the motion and the motion carried unanimously.


VIII. Items for Board Information

A. Strategic Plan

Mr. Chamblee reviewed the June 2000 draft of the Strategic Plan. It was noted that this draft plan would be posted on the agency website for public comment and distributed to staff. Mr. Gregg requested that notice be sent to constituent groups and advisory groups that the draft plan will be posted on the agency website but should they require it in hard copy it is available.


IX. Advisory Committee Reports

A. Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries

Ms. Holliday reported that the Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries Advisory Committee met June 1 in Columbia. John Tanner distributed a paper from International Paper entitled "Good Neighbor Code of Ethics" that has been distributed to hunt clubs. Derrick Meggie gave the Committee a legislative update. Breck Carmichael and Tom Kohlsaat gave an update on the Habitat Protection Committee. Charles Ruth presented the proposed Antlerless Deer Tag budgets. Derrell Shipes presented the proposed Duck Stamp budget. Gerrit J÷bsis provided an update on the relicensing of hydro electric projects. Ms. Holliday reported that the Committee also discussed the possibility of developing more special licenses or stamps for various types of hunting and fishing to generate additional revenue for management.


X. Director's Briefings

1. Legislative

Derrick Meggie distributed copies of a document containing DNR Legislation Adopted, DNR Legislation Not Passed, DNR Legislation Endorsed, and Other Legislation of Interest. Mr. Meggie reviewed the legislation in each of the aforementioned areas and answered questions posed by Board Members.


XI. Items for Board Action

A. Property Acquisition

This item was deferred to Executive Session.

B. FY 2000-2001 Duck Stamp Budget

Derrell Shipes reviewed the proposed FY 2000-2001 Duck Stamp Budget and answered questions posed by Board Members. Mr. McEachin made a motion that the Board approve the proposed FY 2000-2001 Duck Stamp Budget as presented. Dr. Rucker seconded the motion and the motion carried unanimously.

C. FY 2000-2001 Deer Tag Budgets

Charles Ruth reviewed the proposed FY 2000-2001 Deer Tag Budgets (quota and individual) and answered questions posed by Board Members. Ms. Holliday made a motion that the Board approve the proposed FY 2000-2001 Deer Tag Budgets (quota and individual) as presented. Mr. McEachin seconded the motion and the motion carried unanimously.

D. Draper WMA Pond Regulations

Billy McTeer requested that this item be postponed until the July meeting.


XII. Director's Briefings

1. Director

Dr. Sandifer reported that the latest DNR Regional Staff meeting was held on May 23 in Florence. This meeting included staff from Chesterfield, Marlboro, Darlington, Lee, Florence, Marion, Dillon and Horry Counties.

Dr. Sandifer stated that he and John Frampton attended a meeting with Ron Carter and Steve Beckham of PRT, Chris Brooks of OCRM, and Janet Clark of DHEC on May 25, to discuss the CARA legislation.

Dr. Sandifer noted that he attended an E-Commerce Presentation on May 25 which was sponsored by the Budget and Control Board to discuss development of a single state portal for the public to access SC government services.

Dr. Sandifer attended a ceremony on May 30 honoring the 38 new Law Enforcement Officers upon their completion of DNR Basic Training.

Dr. Sandifer attended the Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries biologists meeting on June 2 for a presentation on the habitat protection initiative.

Dr. Sandifer reported that he welcomed participants to the Turkey Symposium held June 5-9 in Augusta.

Dr. Sandifer participated in the Developing Naturally Conference at Clemson University's Madren Center on June 12-13, giving the keynote address "Now or Never: Protecting our Special Places," on the Department's habitat initiative.

Dr. Sandifer reminded the Board that Sonny Baines' retirement party will be this evening at 6:00 p.m., at Leaside off Garners Ferry Road in Columbia.

Dr. Sandifer informed the Board that through the Law Enforcement Officer Hiring Process it was noticed that there are three policies (710.01, 710.02 and 710.03) pertaining to hiring Law Enforcement Officers. Dr. Sandifer asked the Board to allow him to replace the three policies with directives, so it can be handled through the Director's Office. Mr. Gregg made a motion that the Board give Dr. Sandifer the responsibility for the development of Human Resource Guidelines and Deadlines specifically relating to Policy 710.01, 710.02 and 710.03. Ms. Holliday seconded the motion and the motion carried unanimously.


XIII. Deputy Directors' Reports

1. Marine

Dr. Miglarese reported that South Carolina is out of compliance for protection of a species of shad pursuant to provisions of the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission Fishery Management Plan. Dr. Miglarese stated that we are out of compliance and steps have been attempted in the legislature in the past year that would put SC back in compliance. We are waiting for the General Assembly to act.

2. Land, Water and Conservation

Freddy Vang reported on the drought status and explained the steps for establishing emergency regulations for possible water restrictions.

3. Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries

Billy McTeer introduced and welcomed Stephanie Thompson, Public Information Coordinator for Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries Division. Mr. McTeer informed the Board that Randy Geddings, Regional Fisheries Biologist, is retiring after 30+ years of service.

4. Natural Resources Enforcement

Col. Wright expressed this thanks to Sonny Baines for the support of CEC with the Law Enforcement Division. Col. Wright reported that a groundbreaking ceremony was held at Bundrick Island. Col. Wright expressed his appreciation to Dr. Sandifer for his support of Law Enforcement Division personnel working with other law enforcement agencies. Col. Wright reported that the Hawkins' fallow deer case has come to a close. Col. Wright recognized D. J. Riley, District 1, and his canine for their award in the Professional Category of Working Dogs, from the SC Veterinarians' Association and for the canine's induction into the Animal Hall of Fame. Col. Wright reported that Capt. Bucky Baxter and Gentry Thames were asked to attend a Board meeting of the Kentucky Natural Resources Commission to present the canine program.

5. Conservation Education and Communications

Sonny Baines thanked the Board for their support, understanding and patience with him and CEC during his years of service. Mr. Baines then asked Mike Willis to report on the Media Fishing Tournament. Mr. Willis reported that the 7th Annual DNR Media Fishing Tournament was held Saturday, June 10, on Lake Murray. There were 48 statewide media personalities who participated in this year's event.


XIV. Executive Session

At this time, Mr. Gregg made a motion that the Board hold an Executive Session to discuss legal, contractual and personnel matters. Ms. Holliday seconded the motion and the motion carried unanimously.

XV. RETURN TO REGULAR SESSION

Following the Executive Session, the regular meeting was resumed and participants were invited into the meeting.

Mr. Gregg made a motion that the Board direct staff to proceed with the acquisition of the Shooting Tree Tract in the Jocassee area as proposed. Dr. Rucker seconded the motion and the motion carried unanimously.

 

XVI. Director's Briefings

1. Habitat Protection Activities

John Frampton gave the Board an update on CARA. Mr. Frampton reviewed some statistics pertinent to the Habitat Protection Initiative. Mr. Frampton then opened the discussion for potential members of the steering committee.


XVII. Time and Location of the Next Meeting

Chairman Lesesne stated that the next meeting of the DNR Board will be held on Friday, July 21, 2000.

The DNR Board meeting for August has been scheduled for Friday, August 25, 2000, with a Board retreat immediately following the meeting and continuing through Saturday, August 26, 2000.

XVIII. Adjournment

There being no further business to be brought before the DNR Board at this time, the meeting was adjourned.