FISH AND BOAT COMMISSION
[58 PA. CODE CHS. 51, 65 AND 111]
Order to Show Cause; Trout Run Reservoir; Berks County--Fishing; Duck Harbor Pond, Wayne County--Boating
[29 Pa.B. 1224]
The Fish and Boat Commission (Commission) proposes to amend Chapters 51, 65 and 111 (relating to administrative provisions; special fishing regulations; and special regulations counties). The Commission is publishing these amendments as a notice of proposed rulemaking under the authority of 30 Pa.C.S. (relating to Fish and Boat Code) (code). The proposed amendments relate to administration, fishing and boating.
A. Effective Date
The proposed amendments, if approved on final rulemaking, will go into effect upon publication of an order adopting the amendments in the Pennsylvania Bulletin.
B. Contact Person
For further information on the proposed changes, contact Laurie E. Shepler, Assistant Counsel, (717) 657-4546, P. O. Box 67000, Harrisburg, PA 17106-7000. This proposal is available electronically through the Commission's web site (http://www.fish.state.pa.us).
C. Statutory Authority
The proposed amendments are published under the statutory authority of sections 928(c), 2102 and 5124 of the code (relating to revocation, suspension or denial of license; permit or registration; rules and regulations; and particular areas of water).
D. Purpose and Background
The proposed amendments are designed to update, modify and improve the Commission's administrative, fishing and special boating regulations. The specific purpose of the proposed amendments is described in more detail under the summary of proposal. Prior to final consideration by the Commission of the amendment to § 111.64 (relating to Wayne County), the Commission's Boating Advisory Board will review the proposal and make recommendations to the Commission.
E. Summary of Proposal
(1) Section 51.23 (relating to order to show cause). The Commission's regulations provide that when the Executive Director, after seeking staff input, determines that revocation or suspension proceedings should go forward, Director will cause the violator to be served with an order to show cause (why the violator's boating or fishing privileges should not be revoked or suspended). Current regulations provide that service of the order to show cause shall be by certified or registered mail. Many times, however, the violator fails or refuses to claim the certified mail that contains the order to show cause. After three unsuccessful attempts to deliver the certified letter, the post office returns it to the Commission. Staff then, under current practice, re-send the letter by means of regular mail. The Commission proposes to amend § 51.23 so that the regulations are consistent with the current practice.
(2) Section 65.24 (relating to miscellaneous special regulations). At 21 Pa.B. 3693 (August 31, 1991), the Commission designated Trout Run Reservoir in Berks County as a water to be regulated and managed under § 65.9 (relating to big bass special regulations). At that time, Trout Run Reservoir was closed to public fishing under § 65.24. When the water was added to the Big Bass Special Regulations program, it was intended that it be removed from miscellaneous special regulation. However, due to an oversight, this was never done. The Commission recently discovered this omission and proposes to correct it at this time.
It should be noted that Trout Run Reservoir subsequently was removed from the list of waters subject to the Big Bass Special Regulations at 26 Pa.B. 5766 (November 23, 1996). Nonetheless, it remains open to public fishing today.
(3) Section 111.64 (relating to Wayne County). The Commission received a petition requesting that the Commission modify special boating regulations on Duck Harbor Pond. The current regulation, in place since 1983, prohibits water skiing except between 10 a.m. and 6 p.m. on weekdays and between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. on weekends. The petition requests that the Commission permit water skiing and other high speed boat operation between the hours of 10 a.m. and 6 p.m. and create a 10 mph speed limit from 6 p.m. until 10 a.m.
Duck Harbor Pond is located in Wayne County. Due to the shoreline structure and shallow stump areas, the lake has about 150 acres of usable open water. Since the early 1980's, a number of cottages have been built on the land surrounding the lake. It is a popular boating lake, and while the fisheries have declined in recent years, it still provides angling opportunities. Most access is gained through private docks and moorings. The Commission maintains a small access area at the west end of the lake. Joe Harcum is the owner of the land under and around most of the lake. He supports the proposed modifications to the current special regulation.
Although the petition seeks a speed limit of 10 mph, the Commission's Bureau of Law Enforcement has concerns regarding the enforcement of the limit. Therefore, the Commission proposes to amend the special regulations to limit the speed of boats to slow, minimum height swell speed between the hours of 6 p.m. and 10 a.m.
The proposed amendments will not increase paperwork and will create no new paperwork requirements.
G. Fiscal Impact
The proposed amendments will have no adverse fiscal impact on the Commonwealth or its political subdivisions. The proposed amendments will impose no new costs on the private sector or the general public.
H. Public Comments
Interested persons are invited to submit written comments, objections or suggestions about the proposed amendments to the Executive Director, Fish and Boat Commission, P. O. Box 67000, Harrisburg, PA 17106-7000, within 30 days of publication of this notice in the Pennsylvania Bulletin. Comments submitted by facsimile will not be accepted.
Comments also may be submitted electronically at ''regulations fish.state.pa.us.'' A subject heading of the proposal and a return name and address must be included in each transmission. If an acknowledgment of electronic comments is not received by the sender within 2 working days, the comments should be retransmitted to ensure receipt.
PETER A. COLANGELO,
Fiscal Note: 48A-96. No fiscal impact; (8) recommends adoption.
TITLE 58. RECREATION
PART II. FISH AND BOAT COMMISSION
Subpart A. GENERAL PROVISION
CHAPTER 51. ADMINISTRATIVE PROVISIONS
§ 51.23. Order to show cause.
* * * * *
(b) Service of the order to show cause shall be by certified or registered mail. Service is complete upon delivery of the mail. If the mail is returned by the postal authorities with a notation that the violator refused to accept the mail or that the mail was unclaimed, the Commission will serve the order to show cause by ordinary mail with the return address of the Commission appearing thereon. Service by ordinary mail is complete if the mail is not returned to the Commission within 15 days after mailing. Other documents served by the agency shall be served by first class mail in accordance with 1 Pa. Code § 33.31 (relating to service by the agency).
Subpart B. FISHING
CHAPTER 65. SPECIAL FISHING REGULATIONS
§ 65.24. Miscellaneous special regulations.
The following waters are subject to the following miscellaneous special regulations:
County Name of Water Special Regulations * * * * *
[Berks Trout Run Reservoir Closed to public fishing.] * * * * *
Subpart C. BOATING
CHAPTER 111. SPECIAL REGULATIONS COUNTIES
§ 111.64. Wayne County.
* * * * *
(b) Duck Harbor Pond.
* * * * *
(2) [Water skiing is permitted on weekdays from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and on weekends and holidays from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Water skiing is prohibited at all other times.] The speed of boats is limited to slow, minimum height swell speed between the hours of 6 p.m. and 10 a.m.
* * * * *
[Pa.B. Doc. No. 99-347. Filed for public inspection March 5, 1999, 9:00 a.m.]
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