TITLE 29

State Government

Departments of Government

CHAPTER 80. Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control

Subchapter III. Delaware Native Species Commission [Expires June 7, 2028, pursuant to 81 Del. Laws, c. 256, § 3].


The Delaware Native Species Commission is created to do all of the following:

(1) Reverse the trend of decline and extinction of our local plant and animal native species.

(2) Diligently pursue and perform those things necessary and proper in order that the recommendations in the final report of the Statewide Ecological Extinction Task Force be fully implemented.

(3) Provide state and local lawmakers, policymakers, educators, and other stakeholders with expertise and assistance in projects meeting the goals and purposes of this subchapter.

(4) Report back to the General Assembly on a yearly basis regarding the implementation of the task force recommendations.

81 Del. Laws, c. 256, § 1.;

For purposes of this subchapter:

(1) “Appointed member” means an individual appointed by the Governor under § 8073(a)(2) of this title.

(2) “Commission” means the Delaware Native Species Commission.

(3) “DNREC” means the Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control.

(4) “Task force recommendations” means the recommendations in the final report of the Statewide Ecological Extinction Task Force established by Senate Concurrent Resolution No. 20 of the 149th General Assembly.

81 Del. Laws, c. 256, § 1.;

(a) The Commission is composed of 19 members, as follows:

(1) Six members serving by virtue of position, or a designee appointed by the member, as follows:

a. The Secretary of the DNREC.

b. The Secretary of the Department of Agriculture.

c. The County Executive of New Castle County.

d. The County Administrator for Kent County.

e. The County Administrator for Sussex County.

f. The Secretary of the Department of Transportation.

(2) Thirteen members, appointed by the Governor, as follows:

a. Six individuals who represent environmental organizations or Delaware institutions of higher education, with expertise regarding Delaware plant or animal species.

b. Six individuals who represent stakeholder commercial interests in Delaware, such as land development, farming, and business.

c. One member who is a current or retired botanist or similar professional with expertise in Delaware plant species.

(b) An appointed member serves for a term of up to 3 years and is eligible for reappointment. The Governor shall appoint members for staggered terms so that no more than 5 members’ terms expire in any 1 calendar year.

(c) If an appointed member fails to attend 3 successive meetings of the Commission without just cause, that member’s position may be deemed vacant and the Governor may appoint a replacement.

(d) Members of the Commission serve without compensation, except that the Commission may reimburse members for reasonable and necessary mileage and tolls incident to duties as members of the Commission.

81 Del. Laws, c. 256, § 1; 82 Del. Laws, c. 124, § 1.;

(a) The Commission shall be placed within DNREC and shall have such powers, duties, and functions as described in this subchapter and such other duties and functions as may be referred to it by the Governor, the Secretary of DNREC, or the General Assembly.

(b) The Secretary of DNREC shall provide staff support to the Commission.

81 Del. Laws, c. 256, § 1.;

(a) The Commission shall elect a Chair and Vice Chair at its first meeting and the Chair and Vice Chair shall serve until a replacement is elected. If the Chair becomes vacant, the Vice Chair shall fulfill the duties of the Chair contained in subsection (b) of this section until a replacement is elected at its next meeting.

(b) The Chair of the Commission shall do all of the following:

(1) Set a date, time, and place for the meetings of the Commission.

(2) Supervise the preparation and distribution of meeting notices, agendas, minutes, and other documents prepared by or on behalf of the Commission.

81 Del. Laws, c. 256, § 1.;

(a) A majority of the membership of the Commission constitutes a quorum to conduct official business. Official action by the Commission, including making findings and recommendations, requires the approval of a majority of the members of the Commission present at a meeting with quorum.

(b) The Commission may adopt rules necessary for its operation.

(c) The Commission may undertake the following functions to implement the Task Force recommendations and to further the goals and purposes of the Commission:

(1) Establish subcommittees.

(2) Engage with other organizations to exchange ideas and information and to provide those other organizations with the opportunity to engage with the Commission.

(3) Study, research, plan, and make advisory recommendations to the Governor, the Secretary of State, the Secretary of DNREC, the Department of Agriculture, or the General Assembly.

(d) In carrying out the Commission’s duties under this subchapter, the Commission shall consider any related plans and programs developed by other organizations with expertise in native species conservation or protection, or in the eradication of invasive species, and may designate representatives to serve on special committees, organizations, or other entities to plan, develop, and coordinate specific activities.

81 Del. Laws, c. 256, § 1.;

On or before December 31, 2018, and on or before every December 31 thereafter, the Commission shall submit to the Governor, the President Pro Tempore of the Senate and the Speaker of the House of Representatives for distribution to the members of the General Assembly, an annual report of the Commission’s activities for the previous year and goals for the upcoming year. The report may also include proposals for legislation, administrative action, or other policy changes the Commission considers necessary to carry out its implementation of the task force recommendations or further the goals and purposes of this subchapter.

81 Del. Laws, c. 256, § 1.;