CHAPTER 151

OYSTERS

DREDGING FOR OYSTERS FROM NATURAL OYSTER BEDS

AN ACT TO AMEND CHAPTER 74 OF THE REVISED CODE OF DELAWARE, 1935, PROVIDING FOR A DELAWARE COMMISSION OF SHELL FISHERIES, AND BY DEFINING THE POWERS AND DUTIES THEREOF.

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the State of Delaware in General Assembly met:

Section 1. That Chapter 131, Volume 42, Laws of Delaware, 1939, Chapter 180, Volume 41, Laws of Delaware, 1937, Chapter 181, Volume 41, Laws of Delaware, 1937, Chapter 203, Volume 40, Laws of Delaware, 1935, Chapter 205, Volume 40, Laws of Delaware, 1935, be and the same hereby are repealed.

Section 2. That 2897, Section 96., 2898. Section 97., 2899. Section 98., 2900. Section 99., 2902. Section 101., 2903. Section 102., 2904. Section 103., 2905. Section 104., 2906, Section 105., 2907. Section 106., 2908. Section 107., 2909. Section 108, 2911. Section 110., 23I2. Section 111., 2913. Section 112., 2921. Section 120., 2922. Section 121., 2923. Section 122., 2924. Section 123., 2925. Section 124., 2926. Section 125., 2927. Section 126., 2935. Section 134., 2940. Section 139., 2941. Section 140., 2942. Section 141., 2943. Section 142., 2944. Section 143., 2946. Section 145., 2947. Section 146., 2948. Section 147., 2949. Section 148., 2952. Section 151., 2953. Section 152., 2955. Section 154., 2956. Section 155., 2957. Section 156., 2958. Section 157., 2964. Section 163., 2965. Section 164., 2966. Section 165., 2967. Section 166., 2968. Section 167., 2969. Section 168., 2975. Section 174., 2976. Section 175., 2977. Section 176., 2978. Section 177., of Chapter 74 of the Revised Code of Delaware, 1935, be and the same hereby are repealed.

Section 3. Commission Established:-The Delaware Commission of Shell Fisheries is hereby created.

Section 4. Appointment; Qualifications; Terms of Office; Vacancies:-The Governor shall appoint five (5) persons who shall constitute the said Commission. Two (2) of the persons

so appointed shall be actually engaged in the shellfish industry as planters or shippers, or owners or lessee of land on which shellfish are produced. The fifth (5th) member of the said commission shall be the Collector of Oyster Revenue, who shall be a member of the said Commission during the full term of service as Collector of Oyster Revenue.

Within ten (10) days after the passage and approval of this Act, the Governor of the State of Delaware shall appoint two (2) members to the said Commission whose term of office shall be designated to expire in two (2) years, and the Governor shall also appoint two (2) other members whose term of office shall be designated to expire in three (3) years. Upon the expiration of the terms first designated, the Governor shall appoint the succeeding members for a full term of three (3) years each. Any vacancies occurring shall be filled by the Governor for the unexpired term.

No more than three members of said Commission shall be of the same political party.

Section 5. Meetings; Officers; Compensation; Mileage:-- The Commission shall meet in the Court House in Dover, at such times as its rules may prescribe, and at such times and places within the State as in its judgment may be deemed necessary. The Commission shall elect one of its members President, and shall elect one of its members Secretary ; the said officers shall hold office for one (1) year, or until their successors shall be duly elected and qualified.

The members of the said Commission shall receive no compensation for their services, but shall be allowed all necessary expenses in carrying out their duties as members of said Commission, including mileage of five (5) cents per mile, going to and from their residences to the point of service, and returning therefrom; the State Treasurer, upon the warrant of the Commission, shall pay the said expenses.

Section 6. Duties; Powers; Making and Enforcing Regulations; Reports:--The Delaware Commission of Shell Fisheries shall have full control and direction of the shellfish industry and of the protection of shellfish throughout the entire State. The said Commission shall have the power by affirmative vote of a majority of the Commission to adopt, promulgate, amend, and repeal regulations consistent with the law, which shall be enforced by members of the Commission, the Captain or Masters of guard boats, guards, special inspectors employed by the Commission, and any police officer or constable, for the following purposes: (a) To preserve and improve the shellfish industry of the State of Delaware. (b) To operate, cultivate, and replenish on the oyster or clam grounds or beds in waters within the jurisdiction of the State of Delaware. (c) To regulate, inspect, and approve any boat or vessel or equipment used in the shellfish industry in the State of Delaware. (d) To provide regulations for the replacement of any boat or vessel lost or destroyed which was licensed in the Shellfish industry of the State of Delaware. (e) When deemed necessary to provide for the issuance of permits to persons engaged in the shellfish industry in the State and for the revocation for cause of such permits. (f) To provide for the preservation and improvement of the oyster and clam beds and grounds of theState.

Such regulations of the Commission shall have the force and effect of law and shall supersede all local ordinances and regulations heretofore or hereinafter enacted or adopted which are inconsistent therewith. A copy of every such regulation, giving the date that it takes effect, shall be filed with the Secretary of State, and shall be published in at least two newspapers of general circulation in the territory to be effected once a week for two weeks prior to the time the rule or regulation becomes effective, except in the case of an emergency when the Commission shall give such advance notice as in its opinion it may deem necessary or desirable. The Commission shall file an Annual Report with the Governor, setting forth therein all receipts and expenditures. The said report shall also contain any recommendations of the said Commission.

Section 7. Fees; Charges:--The Commission shall have the right to establish fees or charges for the taking of shellfish from any of the said waters within the limits of the State of Delaware, to be fixed on a unit basis of not more than five (5) cents per bushel of any shellfish taken from the said waters. The Commission shall have the right to issue such permits as it deems necessary to persons engaged in the shellfish industry in the State, and shall establish fees or charges for the same.

All such fees or charges under the provisions of this Act shall be remitted to the State Treasurer who shall place moneys so collected in the General Fund of the State of Delaware.

Section 8. Expenses; Indebtedness:--The Commission may incur such expenses as it may consider proper to fully carry out the provisions of this Act; provided, however, the said Commission shall not contract any indebtedness or obligations which cannot be met by funds immediately available to its use, as in this Act provided.

Section 9. Payment of Expenses:--For the purposes set forth in this Act there is hereby appropriated a sum of money equal to fifty (50) percent of the receipts of the said Commission which shall be drawn upon warrants of the said Commission and certified to the State Treasurer.

Section 10. Examination of Witnesses; Perjury; Subpoenas:--The Commission by its presiding officer may administer oaths and examine witnesses under oath in any part of the State, in any matter relating to the shellfish industry. Any person who, having been sworn, willfully gives false testimony, shall be guilty of Perjury. For the purpose of this section the Commission may issue subpoenas signed by its President and Secretary, requiring the attendance of witnesses and the production of books and papers in any part of the State before it. Any person who, being served with a subpoena issued pursuant to this section, shall fail to attend, or if he attends, refuses to testify without cause, shall be liable to a penalty of Two Hundred Dollars ($200.00) for each and every offense.

Section 11. Cooperating State Agencies:--The Captain of the guard boat, guards, and other employees of the Collector of Oyster Revenue, shall in addition to their other duties, cooperate with the Commission in carrying out the provisions of this Act.

Section 12. Crabs and Crabbing :--The Commission shall not have authority over crabs or crabbing. And the Commission shall not make rules or regulations concerning crabs or crabbing.

Section 13. Violations; Penalties:--Any person, firm, or corporation, violating any of the rules and regulations of the Commission, shall upon conviction thereof, be fined not less than One Hundred Dollars ($100.00), nor more than Five Hundred Dollars ($500.00), and costs of the prosecution. Provided, that, for the violation of any of the rules and regulations of the Commission by a non-resident of this State, the minimum fine shall be Two Hundred Dollars ($200.00). If any person shall fail to pay any fine or costs imposed under the provisions of this Act, such person shall be committed to jail for a period of not less than thirty (30) days and not exceeding ninety (90) days. Upon a second conviction, in addition to the penalty above provided, it shall be the duty of the Collector of Oyster Revenue, upon proper certification of the same, to revoke the license or permit of the convicted person for a period of one (1) year from the date of the said second conviction.

Every person, other than employees of the Commission, members of the said Commission, and peace officers, who shall arrest or secure the arrest and the conviction of any violator of the rules and regulations of the Commission shall receive one-half of the fine imposed and collected for the violation for which he makes or secures the arrest and conviction.

Section 14. All Acts or parts of Act inconsistent with the provisions of this Act are hereby repealed to the extent of such inconsistency.

Section 15. This Act shall take effect May 1, 1943. Approved April 26, 1943.