Section 9-12-42

Duty to replant oysters and oyster shells on public reefs; option to pay replanting costs, etc.; penalties.

(a) The Marine Resources Division may establish by rule a shell fee to be used for the replanting of oyster cultch material on the public reefs of this state or for otherwise managing the oyster resources of this state. This fee shall be charged on a per sack basis to all seafood dealers who are purchasing oysters directly from the harvester. The fee shall be calculated and paid quarterly. The payment is due no later than one month after the end of the previous quarter.

(b) The division shall establish an Oyster Management Fund and all monies paid to the department pursuant to the shell fee shall be deposited in this fund. The monies in this Oyster Management Fund shall be used by the division to replant cultch material on the public reefs of this state, to cultivate the public reefs of this state, or to otherwise manage the oyster resources of this state.

(c) Should the person, firm, corporation, or association obligated to pay the shell fee fail to remit the fee to the division by the prescribed date, the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources may immediately institute in its name appropriate legal proceedings in any court having jurisdiction thereof to enforce the collection and payment of such amount as may be due as computed by the department, and the seafood dealers license of such person, firm, corporation, or association so in default may be revoked, nor shall any license for any subsequent year or years be issued to the person, firm, corporation, or association as long as the default continues; and, in addition, the person, firm, corporation, or association in default shall be guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction thereof, shall be fined not less than fifty dollars ($50) nor more than five hundred dollars ($500).

(Acts 1923, No. 504, p. 672; Code 1923, §2769; Acts 1936-37, Ex. Sess., No. 169, p. 192; Code 1940, T. 8, §139; Acts 1943, No. 422, p. 388, §1; Acts 1945, No. 308, p. 501, §1; Acts 1961, Ex. Sess., No. 108, p. 2028, §1; Act 2010-699, p. 1692, §1.)