Board of the Department of Natural Resources
NOAA - National Ocean Service Laboratory Auditorium
219 Fort Johnson Road
Charleston, South Carolina
February 15, 2008 10:00 a.m.
The regular meeting of the Board of the South Carolina Department of Natural Resources was held at 10:00 a.m. on Friday, February 15, 2008, at the NOAA-National Ocean Service Laboratory Auditorium, Charleston, SC. Notice of the date, time, and place of the meeting was posted and mailed to the news media. Chairman Mike McShane presided at the meeting. Board members present included Michael Campbell, Stephen Davis, John Evans, Norman Pulliam, and Caroline Rhodes. Board member Frank Murray’s absence was excused. Mr. John Frampton and staff members of the Department of Natural Resources were present at the meeting, as were various guests.
- Call to Order
Chairman McShane called the meeting to order at 10:00 a.m. and welcomed everyone to the meeting.
Chairman McShane asked Rev. Rob Dewey to offer the invocation.
- Pledge of Allegiance
Michael Campbell led the group in the Pledge of Allegiance.
- Introduction of Guests
Hank Stallworth introduced Bo Peterson, The Post and Courier; Jeff Dennis, Charleston Mercury Magazine; Pat and Jan Robertson; Scott Whitaker, Mike Able, and Charles Farmer, CCA; Bobby Creech; Sam Hiott, Jim Goller, and Linda Amick, Harry Hampton Memorial Wildlife Fund; Geoff Scott, NOAA; and Representative Heyward Hutson.
- Approval of Minutes
Chairman McShane asked if there were any additions, deletions, or corrections to the minutes of the January 17, 2008, meeting. Mrs. Rhodes offered the following amendment to the minutes of the January 17, 2008, meeting.
There being no further amendments, Mrs. Rhodes made a motion that the Board approve the minutes of the January 17, 2008, meeting as amended. Mr. Pulliam seconded the motion and the motion carried unanimously.
- Deputy Directors Reports
Robert Boyles presented the Board with budget figures for the history of the marine artificial reef program. Mr. Boyles reminded the Board of the Harry Hampton Marine Conservation banquet scheduled for May 2 and the Region IV Open House scheduled for May
2 and 3. Mr. Boyles informed the Board of the South Atlantic Fishery Management Council’s proposed action (Snapper-Grouper Amendment 15B) to prohibit the sale of fish caught under the personal bag limit.
- Constituent Comments
Mr. Stallworth introduced Representative Heyward Hutson and asked him to address the Board. Representative Hutson’s comments were of his concern about the effects of unplanned growth and its adverse consequences on the natural environment.
Mr. Frampton thanked everyone involved with the DNR 11th Annual Natural Resources Legislative Reception held on January 29. Mr. Frampton noted that 55 House Members and 17 Senators attended, as well as friends of the Department. Mr. Frampton thanked all Department staff who volunteered and helped make the event such a success.
Sam Hiott, Chairman, Harry Hampton Memorial Wildlife Fund, presented the Department with a mock check in the amount of $110,000 for 2008 projects.
- Advisory Committee Reports
- Land, Water and Conservation
Steve de Kozlowski reported that the Land, Water and Conservation Advisory Committee met on January 24, 2008, in Columbia. The Advisory Committee received presentations on the Draft 2008 Aquatic Plant Management Plan as well as a review of the program’s 2007 activities, the Draft SC Aquatic Invasive Species Management Plan, a drought update, a Geological Survey update, and the Lynches and Catawba Rivers Scenic River Eligibility Studies.
- Heritage Trust
Barry Beasley reported that the Heritage Trust Advisory Board met on February 7, 2008, in Great Falls. The Advisory Board elected Henry Fair as Vice Chairman. They received reports and presentations on Nature-Based Tourism efforts and conservation initiatives in the area. The Advisory Board received an update on Botany Bay and reviewed their revenue and budget through December. The Advisory Board approved two acquisition projects.
Breck Carmichael reported that the Waterfowl Advisory Committee met February 12, 2008, in Columbia. The Advisory Committee received reports on waterfowl hunting and management in Region 3, SC Partners, 2007-2008 Waterfowl Hunt Season on WMA’s, Youth Waterfowl Day participation, Draft 2008 Aquatic Plant Management Plan, Peer Review Team, and results from Youth Hunts on WMA’s.
- Governor's Cup Billfishing Series
Norman Pulliam reported that the Governor's Cup met on February 14, 2008, in Charleston. Mr. Pulliam stated the Advisory Board is pleased to have Wally Jenkins and Amy Dukes working with them. Mr. Pulliam noted that the Executive Order creating the Advisory Board has not been signed by the Governor since 1985, so staff would like to draft an Executive Order and send it to the Governor for reaffirmation. Mr. Pulliam made a motion to this effect. Mr. Evans seconded the motion and the motion carried unanimously. Mr. Pulliam stated the Advisory Board discussed the budget and the awards ceremony will be September 14, 2008, at the Governor's Mansion. Mr. Pulliam made a motion that the Board approve the appointment of Dr. John Cagle and the reappointments of Jim Johnson and Frank Gibson. Mr. Evans seconded the motion and the motion carried unanimously.
- Items for Board Information
- NOAA Program
Dr. Geoff Scott, Director, NOAA's Center for Coastal Environmental Health and Biomolecular Research, gave the Board a brief presentation on the research being conducted at the Center and the partnership they have with SC DNR.
- Drought Update
Hope MIzzell reported that the Drought Response Committee met in January and even with the rainfall in December and January all counties except Beaufort and Jasper remain at level 3 (severe). Ms. Mizzell reviewed streamflows, lake levels, and groundwater monitoring wells around the State. The Drought Response Committee will meet again in April.
- Crab Bank Erosion and Impacts
Bob Perry reviewed the history of Crab Bank and reported that there is concern over its erosion. Staff have met with the Corps of Engineers and it appears that this erosion is a natural cycle, noting that if there are outside factors they cannot be measured. Mr. Perry assured the Board that staff will continue to meet with the Corps to make a final determination.
- Evaluation Criteria for Property Acquisition
Dr. Beasley reviewed the history of the development and formation of the Habitat Committee. Dr. Beasley informed the Board that the habitat committee developed these criteria and the intent is that all acquisitions follow these guidelines. Chairman McShane asked the Board to review this information and send any comments to him.
- Tax Credit for Habitat Improvement
Mr. Carmichael informed the Board that it is the opinion of the Attorney General that the tax credit exists but DNR has no authority to promulgate regulations. Chairman McShane and Mr. Frampton will meet with Department of Revenue staff to discuss further this tax credit.
- Items for Board Action
- Lynches and Catawba Scenic River Eligibility Studies
Dr. Beasley gave the Board a brief history of the Scenic Rivers Program and reviewed the process with the Board. Mr. Pulliam made a motion that the Board approve the Catawba River Scenic River Eligibility Study as presented. Mr. Campbell seconded the motion and the motion carried unanimously. Mr. Pulliam made a motion that the Board approve the Lynches River Scenic River Eligibility Study as presented. Mr. Campbell seconded the motion and the motion carried unanimously.
- Approval of Alligator Management Program Regulations
Breck Carmichael said some minor changes and one substantive change have been made to the proposed regulations since they were sent to the Board in the meeting package and asked the Board to allow staff to make minor changes as necessary. Derrell Shipes reported on the CITES tag, which is the substantive change to the proposed regulations. Mr. Davis made a motion that the Board approve the Proposed Alligator Management Program Regulations with minor changes and the one substantive change relative to CITES tag and to allow staff to make other non substantive changes if necessary. Mr. Evans seconded the motion and the motion carried unanimously.
- Director’s Briefing
Mr. Frampton introduced Kevin Kibler, Assistant Director of Policy and Development. Mr. Kibler will assist with budget issues and is currently working on the Florence and Styx Offices.
Mr. Frampton and Mr. Kibler gave the Board an update on the budget and the recent report of the Board of Economic Advisors.
Mr. Frampton reminded the Board that their Statement of Economic Interests forms are due by April 15th.
Mr. Frampton represented DNR at the House Agriculture, Natural Resources and Environmental Affairs Committee meeting on January 29.
Mr. Frampton represented DNR at the Senate Fish, Game and Forestry Committee on January 30.
- Executive Session
At this time Mrs. Rhodes made a motion that the Board hold an Executive Session to discuss contractual, legal, and personnel matters. Mr. Evans seconded the motion and the motion carried unanimously.
- Return to Regular Session
Mr. Campbell made a motion that the Board return to regular session. Mrs. Rhodes seconded the motion and the motion carried unanimously.
Mr. Pulliam made a motion to sell or otherwise dispose of the Berry’s Mill Fish Hatchery property in Greenville County. Mr. Evans seconded the motion and the motion carried unanimously.
- Deputy Directors’ Reports
Mr. Campbell made a motion to give initial approval of the acquisition process for 4,664 acres in Laurens and Newberry Counties. Mr. Davis seconded the motion and the motion carried unanimously.
- Outreach and Support Services
Carole Collins showed the Board some of the winners of this year’s Junior Duck Stamp competition. Scott Speares reviewed the Lifetime License Saltwater Privilege as requested by the Board. Mr. Campbell made a motion that the Board accept the staff recommendation for Saltwater Privilege Add On for Lifetime Licenses. Mrs. Rhodes seconded the motion and the motion carried unanimously. Mr. Frampton reminded the Board that this will require legislation.
- Marine Resources
Robert Boyles reported that the SC Chapter of the American Fisheries Society has named Dr. Vic Burrell as their Conservationist of the Year. Mr. Boyles also reported on the SAFMC Recreational Sale of Fish - Snapper-Grouper Amendment 15B. The Council proposes to require a federal, commercial license to sell these fish. Mr. Boyles also gave the Board an update on the Federal Recreational Registry which will require a change in the SC saltwater license to require shore-based anglers to be licensed if that license is to serve as a substitute for the more expensive Federal registration requirement.
- Land, Water and Conservation
Chairman McShane informed the Board that the SCACD legislative dinner will be February 19. Mr. Stallworth reported on the Surface Water Withdrawal Act.
- Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries
Mr. Carmichael reported that the Bass Master’s Classic will be held next weekend at Lake Hartwell.
- Law Enforcement
Col. Alvin Taylor gave the Board an update on new officer training. The certified officers are in the field and the remainder are in boating training and should be in the field in a couple of weeks. Col. Taylor noted that there are now 260 officers.
Mrs. Rhodes made a motion that the Board approve the Conservation District Commissioner Appointments for C. M. Dantzler, Jr., Thomas Ware, Carl Ben Setzler, III, and Rev. James Shealy. Mr. Evans seconded the motion and the motion carried unanimously
Mrs. Rhodes made a motion to approve the License Agreement, as presented, between USDA-NRCS and SC DNR in Horry County. Mr. Campbell seconded the motion and the motion carried unanimously
Mr. Pulliam made a motion to give final approval for property acquisition of 94 acres in Greenville County. Mr. Davis seconded the motion and the motion carried unanimously.
- Time and Location of the Next Meeting
The March Board meeting will be held on Thursday, March 20, 2008, in Columbia.
There being no further business to be brought before the DNR Board at this time, the meeting was adjourned.