MINUTES

BOARD OF THE DEPARTMENT OF NATURAL RESOURCES

Rembert C.  Dennis Building, Room 335

Columbia, South Carolina

Friday, September 15, 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, September 15, 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 Dr. Julius Leary, Danny Ford, Ben Gregg, Malloy McEachin and Dr. Douglas Rucker.  Board member Russell Holliday was absent from the meeting.  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 Marge Davenport, USGS; Bob Bailey, Executive Director of the SC Sportsmen=s Coalition; Lisa Sox, Senate Fish, Game and Forestry; and Nancy Stone Collum, Coastal Conservation League.

 

IV.            Constituency Comments

            Mr. Chamblee stated that there were no requests for constituency comment.

 

  V. Approval of Minutes

                  Chairman Lesesne asked if there were any corrections or additions to the minutes of the August 25, 2000, meeting.  There being no corrections or additions Dr.  Leary made a motion that the minutes of the August 25, 2000 meeting be approved as submitted.  There was a second to the motion and the motion carried unanimously.

 

VI.            Presentations/Commendations

            Dr.  Sandifer congratulated Dr.  Bob Van Dolah of the Marine Division for obtaining a large grant from EPA=s Coastal 200 initiative to assist in monitoring the condition of SC=s estuaries.

 

            Dr.  Sandifer congratulated Dr.  Jim Bulak for recently receiving praise for his dedication and service from Senator John Land while Senator Land was addressing a group at the State Employees Association meeting.

 

            Dr.  Sandifer read a letter from CASE (Citizens Asking for a Safe Environment) commenting on Jim Quinn=s excellent representation of the Department in the Safety Kleen matter at the US Federal Court Hearing.

 


            Dr.  Sandifer showed the Kodak/National Geographic Society, Conservation Fund Greenways 2000 Award which was presented to DNR for the Jocassee Gorges Project.

 

VII.            Advisory Committee Reports

            A. Marine

            Ben Gregg discussed the concept of the Ocean/Coastal Seminar for 2002.  The seminar will concentrate on South Carolina resources and will include public, commercial, recreational and the scientific sectors.  Mr.  Gregg reported that the aquaculture task force will be working over the next several months to develop a report outlining changes for the aquaculture policies.  Mr.  Gregg also brought to the attention of the Board discussions for the Saltwater Fishing License Fee and the desire to increase the fee from $5.50 to $10.50.  Mr.  Gregg asked Wayne Waltz to review the history and progression of the saltwater stamp and reviewed data from a 1998 survey.  John Miglarese reviewed the chronology of the saltwater license actions.  Dr Miglarese noted that in June the Marine Recreation Fisheries Advisory Board recommended a fee increase from $5.50 to $10.50 with $1.00 being retained by the license agent.  Dr.  Miglarese informed the Board that the Marine Advisory Committee endorsed the recommendation but also with an amendment to include an additional increase for non residents.  Dr.  Miglarese=s suggestion was to instruct staff to develop an intensive education campaign to get current feedback and work with the General Assembly to give them an idea of the committee recommendations.  After Board Members asked questions and discussed this matter, Mr.  Gregg made a motion to acknowledge the work by both the Marine Recreational Fisheries Advisory Board and the Marine Advisory Committee regarding their recommendation and to instruct DNR to conduct an intensive public education effort to gauge public acceptance and support for an increase in the recreational fishing license fees for both residents and non residents and to instruct DNR staff to present to the General Assembly the information on the recommendation and receive feedback and instruct staff to present their findings and any other information to the Board in February 2001.  Dr.  Leary seconded the motion and the motion carried unanimously.

 

            B. Law Enforcement

            Dr.  Leary reported that the Law Enforcement Advisory Committee met Wednesday, September 13, in Orangeburg.  The Advisory Committee reviewed the year end summary of the Law Enforcement Division.  The Committee reviewed Operation Neptune, the seafood marketing investigation, which is near completion.  There were approximately 150 violations uncovered.  The Advisory Committee reviewed high fence situation, at present there are 28 high fence enclosures which are not industrial sites.  GPS coordinates have been completed on all corners of the high fences and only one fence was found to have a mound and the owner has removed the mound.  Dr.  Leary noted that there was much discussion about coyotes and Buddy Baker attended the meeting and informed the Advisory Committee of the present status of coyotes.  Dr.  Leary reported that Lt.  Walters gave the Committee an update on the Operation Game Thief Program which will be presented to the Board at the October meeting.

 


VIII.     Item for Board Information and Information

            A. War Between the States Heritage Act

            Tom Kohlsaat and Chris Judge reviewed the legislation that passed creating a Commission and the War Between the States Advisory Board.  The War Between the States Heritage Act is closely modeled after the Heritage Trust Act.  The DNR Board does occupy a seat on this newly formed Advisory Board.  This organization will protect properties that will be called War Between the States Heritage Preserves.

 

  IX.      Items for Board Action

            A. FY 2001-2002 Budget

            Malloy McEachin reviewed the 2001-2002 budget request as recommended by the Budget Committee to be sent to the Governor.  Mr.  McEachin noted that the request includes just over $4.62 million in recurring funds and just over $18 million in non recurring funds.  Mr.  Gregg made a proposal to add $60,000 in recurring funds for the Department website.  Mr.  McEachin made a motion that the Board adopt the proposed budget request including the $60,000 for the website and forward this request to the Governor.  Dr.  Rucker seconded the motion and the motion carried unanimously.

 

            B. Heritage Preserve Management Plans

            Long Branch Bay and Great Pee Dee River

            Johnny Stowe presented the proposed management plans for Long Branch Bay and the Great Pee Dee River.  Mr.  McEachin made a motion that the Board adopt the management plans as proposed.  Dr.  Leary seconded the motion and the motion carried unanimously.

 

            C. Terms and Conditions for Use of Cohen Campbell State Fish Hatchery

            Val Nash distributed the Terms and Conditions for the Use of the Cohen Campbell State Fish Hatchery which were revised from the guidelines sent to the Board previously.  Mr.  McEachin asked that number four be amended so that individuals over the age of 65 not be required to have a fishing license.  There being no questions or additional amendments the Terms and Conditions for the Use of the Cohen Campbell State Fish Hatchery were approved as presented (copy attached to the minutes).

 

   X.            Director=s Briefings

            1. Director

            Dr.  Sandifer recognized the attendance of Greg Miley, a mentee in the W.I.L.D. program, and Maj. Gregg Smith, Mr.  Miley=s mentor, at today=s Board meeting.

 

            Dr.  Sandifer reported that he and John Frampton traveled to Washington, DC, September 11-13, to work with the Congressional Delegation relative to the CARA legislation.

 

            Dr.  Sandifer expressed his appreciation for the Board Members= attendance at the Governor=s Cup Billfishing Awards Ceremony on August 25. 


            Dr.  Sandifer represented DNR at the Clemson Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit Coordinating meeting held at the Hayden Center at Clemson on August 29.

 

            Dr.  Sandifer noted that Cary Chamblee attended the W.I.L.D. mentors/mentees meeting at Styx on August 31, while he, along with Col.  Wright and Maj.  McCarty represented DNR at the Governor=s Hurricane Meeting held in preparation for hurricane season.

 

            Dr.  Sandifer attended Ester Haymond=s farewell drop-in on September 1 to wish her well as she leaves DNR to work part-time at the Administrative Law Judge=s Office.

 

            Dr.  Sandifer represented the Department on September 5 at the DNR/Santee Cooper/Corps of Engineers Partnership Meeting held at the Marine Center.

 

            Dr.  Sandifer chaired the first meeting of the Animal Care Committee of the SC Aquarium on September 14, in Charleston.

 

            Dr.  Sandifer reminded the Board of the Law Enforcement Officer of the Year Banquet being held at 1:00 pm, at the Holiday Inn in front of the Carolina Coliseum.

 

            Dr.  Sandifer reported that he will be leaving this afternoon to attend the IAFWA fall meeting being held in Indianapolis, IN.

 

            Dr.  Sandifer informed the Board that Rose Marie Scheibler will be having surgery on Tuesday, September 19, and will be out of the office for 4-6 weeks.

 

            Dr.  Sandifer reminded the Board of the National Hunting and Fishing Day activities to be held at the Cohen Campbell Fish Hatchery on Saturday, September 23, from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm.

 

            Mr. Chamblee gave a brief update on activities involving Lake Murray and plans for upcoming meetings with fishing, hunting, conservation, recreation and homeowner groups.

 

 

  XI.            Deputy Directors= Reports

            1. Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries

            Billy McTeer briefed the Board on the Department=s involvement in the Santee National Wildlife Refuge.  Mr.  McTeer also reported that the opening of the gate to Jocassee for the public has been postponed due to inclement weather and gravel which has to be spread on the roads prior to opening them to the public.

 

            2. Law Enforcement

            No further report.


            3. Conservation Education and Communications

            Carole Collins reported that the Coastal BOW Workshop is full.  Ms.  Collins also noted that 140 schools have made requests for the animal programs and there are 50 additional requests on the waiting list.  Ms.  Collins stated that the Media Section has been working on publicity for the National Hunting and Fishing Day.  Mr.  Collins informed the Board that the Magazine Section has finished the editorial portion of the November/December issue.

 

            4. Marine Resources

            Dr.  Miglarese reported that shrimp baiting season opens today.

 

            5. Land, Water and Conservation

Freddy Vang informed the Board that at the October meeting the Black River Scenic River Proposal will be presented.  Mr.  Vang noted that on September 26, there will be a meeting at Richland County Council about the hydrology of the Congaree River.  Mr.  Vang also reported that tomorrow, September 16, is Beach Sweep/River Sweep.  Mr.  Vang also noted that October 2 and 3, will be the first meeting for the Conservation District Legislative Initiative.

 

            6. Administrative Services

            No further report.

 

XII. Executive Session

At this time, Dr.  Leary made a motion that the Board hold an Executive Session to discuss legal, contractual and personnel matters. 

 

XIII. RETURN TO REGULAR SESSION

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

 

            Dr.  Leary reported that there were no motions to be made.

 

XIV.     Time and Location of the Next Meeting

                  Chairman Lesesne stated that the next meeting of the DNR Board will be held on Friday, October 20, 2000.

 

XV.            Adjournment

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