Presenter: Jerry Cooke

Commission Agenda Item No. 4
Managed Lands Deer Permits
June 1998

I. Discussion: Responsibility for establishing seasons, bag limits, and means and methods for taking wildlife resources is delegated to the Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission under Parks and Wildlife Code, Chapter 61. The Regulations Committee at its April 1998 meeting authorized staff to publish proposed new regulations concerning Managed Lands Deer Permits in the Texas Register for public comment. The proposed new regulation would enable a participant who accepts a harvest quota for both buck and antlerless deer to allow the harvest of deer by any lawful means from the Saturday closest to September 30 until the third Sunday in January. The proposed regulation appeared in the May 1, 1998, issue of the Texas Register (23 TexReg 4215). A summary of public comment on the proposed regulations will be presented at the time of the hearing.

II. Recommendation: The staff recommends the Parks and Wildlife Commission adopt the following motion:

"The Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission adopts the repeal of existing 31 TAC §65.26 and proposed new 31 TAC §65.26, concerning Managed Lands Deer Permits, with changes to proposed text as published in the May 1, 1998, issue of the Texas Register (23 TexReg 4215)."

Attachments - 2

1. Exhibit A – Proposed Managed Lands Deer Permit Regulations
2. Exhibit B – (Available upon request.)

Commission Agenda Item No. 4
Exhibit A

Proposed Preamble

1. Introduction.

The Texas Parks and Wildlife Department proposes the repeal of §65.26 and new §65.26, concerning Managed Lands Deer (MLD) permits. The repeal and new section are necessary to advance the commission policy of providing the maximum opportunity for the enjoyment of wildlife resources by the citizens of this state. The new section will function to establish: eligibility requirements for the issuance of MLD permits; privileges accruing to the holders of MLD permits; tagging requirements; the conditions and time periods during which it is lawful to hunt deer on properties for which MLD permits have been issued; provisions for the return of MLD permits by landowners who opt out of the program; and conditions under which the department may refuse to issue MLD permits.

2. Fiscal Note.

Robert Macdonald, Wildlife Division regulations coordinator, has determined that for each of the first five years that the proposed new section is in effect, there will be no negative fiscal implications to state or local governments as a result of enforcing or administering the proposed new section.

3. Public Benefit - Cost Note.

Mr. Macdonald also has determined that for each of the first five years the proposed new section is in effect:

(A) The public benefit anticipated as a result of enforcing the rule as proposed will be increased recreational opportunity as a result of encouraging optimized management of deer on private lands in this state.

(B) There will be no effect on small businesses. There are no economic costs to persons required to comply with the rules as proposed, because participation is not mandatory and there is no fee for participation.

(C) The department has not filed a local impact statement with the Texas Workforce Commission as required by Government Code, §2001.022, as this agency has determined that the rules as proposed will not impact local economies.

(D) The department has determined that there will not be a taking of private real property, as defined by Government Code, Chapter 2007, as a result of the proposed rules.

4. Request for Public Comments.

Comments on the proposed rules may be submitted to Jerry Cooke, Texas Parks and Wildlife Department, 4200 Smith School Road, Austin, Texas 78744; (512) 389-4774 or 1-800-792-1112.

5. Statutory Authority.

The amendment and new section are proposed under Parks and Wildlife Code, Chapter 61, Uniform Wildlife Regulatory Act (Wildlife Conservation Act of 1983), which provides the Commission with authority to establish wildlife resource regulations for this state.

The new sections affect Parks and Wildlife Code, Chapter 61.

§65.26. Managed Lands Deer (MLD) Permits.

(a) MLD permits may be issued only to a landowner who has a current WMP in accordance with §65.25 of this title (relating to Wildlife Management Plan) that specifies a harvest quota of buck and/or antlerless white-tailed deer or antlerless mule deer.

(b) An applicant may request the issuance of permits for antlerless-only or both-sex harvest quotas for white-tailed deer, or an antlerless-only harvest quota for mule deer.

(c) The number of MLD permits distributed to a hunter shall be at the discretion of the landowner.

(d) Except for deer taken under an Antlerless and Spike-Buck Control Permit, all deer harvested on a property where MLD permits have been issued must immediately be tagged with the appropriate MLD permit as specified in the WMP and with the appropriate tag from the hunting license of the person who killed the deer.

(e) On all tracts of land for which both MLD buck permits and MLD antlerless permits have been issued for the harvest of white-tailed deer, and on properties for which the WMP specifies a harvest quota of zero for either sex:

(1) the bag limit shall be five white-tailed deer, no more than three bucks, regardless of the county bag limit;

(2) the provisions of §65.42(b)(7) of this title (relating to Archery-Only Open Season) and the stamp requirements of Parks and Wildlife Code, Chapter 43, Subchapter I, do not apply;

(3) the landowner may allow the hunting of white-tailed deer from the Saturday closest to September 30 through the third Sunday in January; and

(4) a hunter shall use an appropriate white-tailed deer tag from his or her hunting license, provided the hunter also possesses an appropriate MLD permit for each deer taken.

(f) If a landowner in possession of MLD permits does not wish to abide by the harvest quota specified by the WMP, the landowner must return all MLD permits to the department by opening day of that year's special archery season.

(g) The department reserves the right to deny further issuance of MLD permits to a landowner who exceeds the harvest quota specified by the WMP or who does not otherwise abide by the WMP.

This agency hereby certifies that the proposal has been reviewed by legal counsel and found to be within the agency’s authority to adopt.

Issued in Austin, Texas on

William D. Harvey, Ph.D.
Regulatory Coordinator
Texas Parks and Wildlife Department
1-800-792-1112, extension 4642 or 512-389-4642

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