Maine Revised Statutes

§6072-C. Limited-purpose aquaculture license

1. License required.  A person may not engage in the activities authorized under this section without a current limited-purpose aquaculture license or a lease issued under this Part authorizing the activities.
[ 2001, c. 421, Pt. B, §10 (AMD); 2001, c. 421, Pt. C, §1 (AFF) .]
2. Licensed activities; criteria.  The holder of a limited-purpose aquaculture license may place marine organisms on the ocean bottom without gear or utilize approved aquaculture gear in a site in the coastal waters of the State to engage in certain aquaculture activities that meet the criteria established in this subsection and in rules adopted by the commissioner. The license also authorizes unlicensed individuals to assist the license holder in the licensed activities with the written permission of the license holder. The commissioner, or qualified professional department staff designated in writing by the commissioner, may issue a limited-purpose aquaculture license for certain aquaculture activities if:
A. The proposed activity generates no discharge into coastal waters; [1999, c. 567, §2 (NEW).]
B. The applicant proposes to utilize aquaculture gear and markings approved by the commissioner in rules adopted pursuant to subsection 8; [1999, c. 567, §2 (NEW).]
C. The gear, excluding mooring equipment, does not cover more than 400 square feet of area and the gear does not present an unreasonable impediment to safe navigation; [1999, c. 567, §2 (NEW).]
D. The proposed activity does not unreasonably interfere with the ingress and egress of riparian owners; [1999, c. 567, §2 (NEW).]
E. The proposed activity does not unreasonably interfere with fishing or other uses of the area, taking into consideration the number and density of aquaculture leases and licensed aquaculture activities in that area; [2009, c. 229, §5 (AMD).]
F. The applicant holds no more than 3 other limited-purpose aquaculture licenses issued under this section; and [2009, c. 229, §5 (AMD).]
G. The consent of the riparian owner is obtained if the proposed activity is located above the mean low-water mark. [2013, c. 509, §6 (AMD).]
[ 2013, c. 509, §6 (AMD) .]
3. Eligibility.   A limited-purpose aquaculture license may be issued only to an individual or to a municipal shellfish management committee established pursuant to section 6671.
[ 2009, c. 229, §6 (AMD) .]
4. License limitations.  The issuance of a limited-purpose aquaculture license does not constitute the issuance of a lease of an area in, on or under the coastal waters.
[ 1999, c. 567, §2 (NEW) .]
5. Application.  The application for a limited-purpose aquaculture license must:
A. Be written on forms supplied by the commissioner; [1999, c. 567, §2 (NEW).]
B. Identify the species to be cultivated; [1999, c. 567, §2 (NEW).]
C. Describe the proposed source of organisms to be grown in the approved aquaculture gear; [1999, c. 567, §2 (NEW).]
D. Describe the location of the approved aquaculture gear deployment by coordinates or metes and bounds; [1999, c. 567, §2 (NEW).]
E. Include a clear set of plans that includes at a minimum:
(1) A location plan with an overhead plan view showing the aquaculture gear deployed at the proposed location. The area occupied by the gear must be drawn to scale on the plan. The location plan must include a north arrow, ebb and flood directions, any federal or local channels and anchorages, any nearby structures and property lines for all riparian owners within 300 feet; and
(2) Two gear drawings, one with an overhead plan view and one with a cross-sectional elevation view of the approved aquaculture gear proposed to be used. The gear drawings must be clearly dimensioned and include, at a minimum, mean high-water and mean low-water marks and the dimensions, profiles and materials used in the construction, deployment and securing of the approved aquaculture gear; [1999, c. 567, §2 (NEW).]
F. Include documentation that riparian landowners within 300 feet of the proposed activity have been notified of the license application and proposed activity; and [1999, c. 567, §2 (NEW).]
G. Include documentation that the municipal harbor master or appropriate municipal officers have been notified of the license application and proposed activity. [1999, c. 567, §2 (NEW).]
[ 1999, c. 567, §2 (NEW) .]
6. Fee.  The application fee for a resident limited-purpose aquaculture license is $50 and $300 for a nonresident limited-purpose aquaculture license. The application fee is nonrefundable. All fees collected under this subsection must be deposited in the Aquaculture Research Fund established in section 6081.
[ 2009, c. 229, §7 (AMD) .]
7. Prohibition; molesting gear.  A person other than a marine patrol officer, the licensed owner of the gear or the licensed owner's assistant, with written permission from the licensed owner, may not utilize, raise, lift, transfer, possess or in any manner molest any approved aquaculture gear that is deployed under a current limited-purpose aquaculture license.
A. [2001, c. 421, Pt. B, §11 (RP); 2001, c. 421, Pt. C, §1 (AFF).]
B. [2001, c. 421, Pt. B, §11 (RP); 2001, c. 421, Pt. C, §1 (AFF).]
[ 2001, c. 421, Pt. B, §11 (AMD); 2001, c. 421, Pt. C, §1 (AFF) .]
7-A. Prohibition; taking product.   A person other than a marine patrol officer or the license holder, or the license holder's assistant with written permission from the license holder, may not take any marine organism grown by the license holder under the license in the area designated on the license and marked in accordance with applicable rules.
[ 2013, c. 509, §7 (NEW) .]
8. Rules.  The commissioner shall adopt rules to implement this section, including, but not limited to, rules establishing the type of gear that is approved aquaculture gear for the purposes of a limited-purpose aquaculture license, minimum standards for maintaining gear, methods of gear identification and license application and review procedures. Rules adopted under this section are routine technical rules pursuant to Title 5, chapter 375, subchapter II-A.
[ 1999, c. 567, §2 (NEW) .]
9. Violation; restitution.  A person who violates this section commits a civil violation for which a fine of not less than $100 for each violation may be adjudged. If a person violates subsection 7 by cutting any lines or marker buoys or intentionally damaging approved aquaculture gear, the court shall also:
A. Order that person to pay to the owner of the approved aquaculture gear that was cut or damaged an amount equal to twice the replacement value of the gear that was damaged or lost as a result of the cutting or damaging action; and [2001, c. 421, Pt. B, §12 (NEW); 2001, c. 421, Pt. C, §1 (AFF).]
B. Direct that person to provide the commissioner, upon making full payment as ordered by the court, proof of that payment. [2001, c. 421, Pt. B, §12 (NEW); 2001, c. 421, Pt. C, §1 (AFF).]
[ 2005, c. 92, §5 (AMD) .]
10. Reporting requirement; confidentiality.   A holder of a limited-purpose aquaculture license shall annually submit to the department a seeding and harvesting report for the past year and a seeding and harvesting plan for the coming year. Information provided in seeding and harvesting reports submitted by a license holder under this subsection is considered confidential information reported to the commissioner pursuant to section 6173.
[ 2013, c. 509, §8 (NEW) .]
1999, c. 567, §2 (NEW). 2001, c. 421, §§B10-12 (AMD). 2001, c. 421, §C1 (AFF). 2003, c. 247, §16 (AMD). 2005, c. 92, §5 (AMD). 2007, c. 212, §2 (AMD). 2009, c. 229, §§5-7 (AMD). 2013, c. 509, §§6-8 (AMD).