Board of the Department of Natural Resources

Rembert C. Dennis Building
1000 Assembly Street
Columbia, SC
March 17, 2006 10:00 a.m.

The regular meeting of the Board of the South Carolina Department of Natural Resources was held at 10:00 am, on Friday, March 17, 2006, at the Rembert C. Dennis Building, Columbia, South Carolina. 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, Karen Floyd, Frank Murray and Smith Ragsdale. Board members John Evans and Smith Ragsdale absences were excused. Mr. John Frampton and staff members of the Department of Natural Resources were present at the meeting, as were various guests.

  1. Call to Order
    Chairman McShane called the meeting to order at 10:00 a.m. and welcomed everyone to the meeting.
  2. Invocation
    Chairman McShane asked Rev. Eric Skidmore to offer the invocation.
  3. Pledge of Allegiance
    Vice Chairman Campbell led the group in the Pledge of Allegiance.
  4. Introduction of Guests
    Hank Stallworth introduced Joey Holleman, The State newspaper; Joanna Weitzel, Carolina wildlife Care; Phillip Lowe, Flyway Foundation; Norm Brunswig, SC Audubon; Chip Sharp, retired DNR LEO; and Angela Viney, SC Wildlife Federation.
  5. Constituent Comments
    Chairman McShane informed the Board that he asked Phillip Lowe to make a brief presentation on the Flyway Foundation. Mr. Lowe explained that the Flyway Foundation is an organization for waterfowlers interested in improving migratory duck populations. Mr. Lowe noted that in the first year they have initiated a project in the nesting areas of the Great Lakes to improve productivity on existing wetlands. Mr. Lowe stated that the Foundation’s second project is to see if mottled ducks will use the hen houses produced by Flyway Foundation volunteers in a partnership between the Foundation and SC DNR. The Flyway Foundation will supply 40 hen houses and DNR will install and monitor them on coastal WMA’s.

    Chairman McShane asked Joanna Weitzel, Executive Director of Carolina Wildlife Care, Inc., to address the Board. Ms. Weitzel brought to the attention of the Board the need to regulate wildlife rehabilitation activities in South Carolina. Ms. Weitzel noted that Carolina Wildlife Care, Inc., is a non profit organization dedicated to the preservation of native wildlife and its natural habitat through rehabilitation, education and environmental conservation. Ms. Weitzel stated that there is currently no requirement in law or regulation to manage or control wildlife rehabilitation activities. Ms. Weitzel distributed copies of minimum standards for wildlife rehabilitators and noted that it falls to state wildlife agencies to regulate. Ms. Weitzel stated that if DNR is willing to consider approaching the issue of regulating wildlife rehabilitation in a manner that is in keeping with national trends, there is ample information and assistance available. Ms. Weitzel offered her assistance and the assistance of Carolina wildlife Care to work with DNR to draft legislation and regulations for wildlife rehabilitators. Breck Carmichael is to organize stakeholders to begin formulating a plan to develop legislation and report back to the Board.

    Chairman McShane asked Chip Sharpe to address the Board. Mr. Sharpe complimented Jay Butfiloski and Patty Castine for the improvements made in the Furbearer Section. Mr. Sharpe noted that the USFWS will be researching Mexican bobcats. The cost per state will be $1,000 and Mr. Sharpe informed the Board that the SC Trappers Association is willing to match $500 for South Carolina’s portion. .
  6. Approval of Minutes
    Chairman McShane asked if there were any additions, deletions or corrections to the minutes of the February 17, 2006, meeting. Mr. Davis made a motion to approved the minutes of the February 17, 2006, meeting as presented. Mr. Campbell seconded the motion and the motion carried unanimously.
  7. Presentations/Commendations
    Chairman McShane presented a Resolution honoring the late Governor Carroll Campbell to Mrs. Campbell. Chairman McShane read the following portions of the Resolution for the record.

    WHEREAS, Governor Campbell’s vision led South Carolina to change its form of government to a more accountable and effective structure, resulting in the restructuring process that created the present South Carolina Department of Natural Resources (SCDNR), positioning the SCDNR into national recognition as one of the most aggressive and successful natural resources agencies in the country while keeping the SCDNR as a separate agency with a seven member citizen Board appointed by the Governor, and

    WHEREAS, Governor Campbell was the first Governor to request that Conservation Officers of the South Carolina Wildlife and Marine Resources Department, one of the agencies that would be restructured into the South Carolina Department of Natural Resources, serve on his security detail, a practice that has persisted with every Governor since his term of offi WHEREAS, While it is a long drive from Columbia to the coast where he loved to fish, Governor Campbell often would escape the pressure and stress of his job by slipping away to Millaree Hunt Club, a half-hour drive from the Capitol, to spend time with his good friend, then Chairman, now Chairman Emeritus, of the South Carolina Department of Natural Resources Board, Marion Burnside, who once said the Governor could do more work in an afternoon sitting in a deer stand at Millaree than he could do in a week in his office, and

    WHEREAS, Governor Campbell loved the hunt-club camaraderie at Millaree, where no one was allowed to get by without some good-natured ribbing, and a place where he could go and just relax and be a regular person; it was said that he would come down to hunt and when he drove through the gate, he was one of the fellows, not the Governor anymore, and

    WHEREAS, Earlier this year, the South Carolina Department of Natural Resources created a new award, the Carroll A. Campbell, Jr. Leadership Award, that will be given to individuals who have given much to natural resource conservation and supported the funding and development of numerous programs that have improved the quality of life of the citizens of South Carolina, with the first of these being awarded, with Governor Campbell in attendance, to Colonel Alvin Taylor, Deputy Director of the SCDNR Law Enforcement Division, and

    WHEREAS, His contributions to the citizens of South Carolina were monumental and he enjoyed the outdoors and was an avid hunter and angler, demonstrating his love for the outdoors by both his participation as well as his legislative support, and

    WHEREAS, Married 46 years, he is survived by his wife, Iris, two sons Mike and Carroll III, their wives and four grandchildren, Blakeney Herlong Campbell, Carroll Berrett Campbell, Michael Rhodes Campbell and Marie Riley Campbell,

    NOW THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, that the Board of the South Carolina Department of Natural Resources on this 20th day of January, 2006, honor the life and memory of one of South Carolina’s greatest leaders.
  8. Advisory Committee Reports
    1. Waterfowl
      Breck Carmichael reported that the Waterfowl Advisory Committee toured the Santee Coastal Reserve on February 21 and met on February 22. Sam Hiott was installed as Chairman of the Advisory Committee. The Advisory Committee discussed hunt results on WMA’s and the National Duck Hunters survey. The next meeting of the Advisory Committee will be May 9.

      Mr. Frampton informed the Board that there has been some concern by the General Assembly about the Board’s decision to close Crab Bank, Bird Key Stono and Deveaux Bank from March 15 through October 15, and allowing beach access for the remainder of the year. Mr. Frampton feels that the Budget and Control Board will not sign the Sanctuary Agreement as it is currently recommended. Mr. Frampton recommended that the Board leave the recommendations for Crab Bank and Bird Key Stono as passed at the February 17, 2006 meeting, but change the recommendation for Deveaux Bank. After much discussion, Mrs. Floyd made a motion that the Board approve the following recommendation for Deveaux Bank: no dogs, beach access will be allowed below the high water mark 365 days per year and access allowed on the landward side of the island in non-nesting areas designated by signage. Mr. Davis seconded the motion and the motion carried unanimously.
    2. Governor’s Cup Billfishing Series
      Robert Boyles reported that the Governor’s Cup Billfishing Series Advisory Board met March 8, in Charleston. The Advisory Board discussed and made rule changes. The Board decided to change the reference to yellow fin tuna to tuna and agreed to maintain a 115” minimum for Blue Marlin. The Advisory Board also accepted the recommendation of the nominations committee. These nominations will be discussed in executive session. Mr. Boyles stated that the 2006 series will be at Edisto in May.
    3. Marine
      Mr. Boyles introduced Scott Whitaker of Coastal Conservation Association. The Marine Advisory Committee met March 9, in Charleston. The primary discussion involved a proposal by CCA to establish or modify size and bag limits on six species red drum, spotted seatrout, sheepshead, black drum, spadefish, and flounder. The Advisory Committee passed the following motion, “The Marine advisory Committee endorses the objectives and intent of the South Carolina Coastal Conservation Association’s legislative proposal presented at this meeting, with some reservations, including the need for further study by the DNR and the need for inclusion of opportunities for public comment and education. Additionally, the MAC recommends that DNR Marine Resources Division staff be tasked with working with the SC CCA, DNR Law Enforcement and other interests to further develop this basic concept and produce a package with recommendations for the possible management of marine finfish in South Carolina. The MAC further recommends that this process be open to inclusion of other species than those listed in the current SC CCA legislative proposal that may be currently unregulated. Presentations regarding this concept and draft package should be made available to the public no later than June, 2006, with public review of the concept and draft package being completed by August 31, 2006. The public review process, findings and recommendations for a final package should be summarized and briefed to the MAC at the regular, September 2006 meeting. At it’s September 2006 meeting the MAC will vote on approval of the final package for further recommendation to the DNR Board for possible inclusion into development of the DNR 2007 legislative package in October 2007. At this time, Mr. Davis made a motion to accept the recommendation of the Marine Advisory Committee and noted that the dates should be used a guidelines. Mrs. Floyd seconded the motion and the motion carried unanimously.

      Mr. Boyles also reported that the Advisory Committee received a legislative report and an update on the deployment of bridge material.
  9. Presentations
    Lt. Jimmy Wagers gave the Board a brief presentation on the Archery in the Schools program. Sgt. Lynwood Kearse gave the Board a brief presentation on the Take One Make One Program.
  10. Item for Board Action
    Term Limit Policy
    Chairman McShane noted that this item will be postponed until a later date.
  11. Director’s Briefings
    Mr. Frampton reminded the Board that their 2006 Statement of Economic Interest forms are due by April 15.

    Mr. Frampton gave the Board an update on the Department’s budget. The Senate Finance Subcommittee budget hearing was held on March 16.

    Mr. Frampton attended the Heritage Trust Bond Bill Conference Committee meeting on March 15.

    Mr. Frampton informed the Board that the Governor will announce a large property opportunity for South Carolina on March 28.
  12. Deputy Directorsí Reports
    1. Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries
      Breck Carmichael spoke of supplemental feeding of quail and noted that the critical time is during the six weeks of turkey season. Mr. Carmichael stated that Georgia allows food to be put out for quail in a feeder and the hunter has to be 300 yards from the feed. Mr. Frampton suggested that Mr. Carmichael and Col. Taylor come back to the Board with a report and/or recommendation. Mr. Carmichael reviewed the results of the 2005-2006 WMA Waterfowl Hunts.
    2. Law Enforcement
      Col. Taylor gave the Board an update on the progress of the new officers. One half of the class is attending the academy and the other half is working on wildlife basics.
    3. Outreach and Support Services
      Carole Collins informed the Board that Freshwater Fishing, Hunting and Saltwater Fishing license sales are up by 17%. Ms. Collins then reviewed upcoming education events such as the PSC, Shallow Water fishing Show, Fishing Rodeos, Camp Wildwood, etc.
    4. Marine
      Robert Boyles informed the Board that a portion of the general trawling zone may need to be opened prior to the next Board meeting. Mr. Davis made a motion to approve the opening of the 2006 commercial shrimp season based on sample trawl findings of the Marine Division and contingent upon notification of the Board. Mrs. Floyd seconded the motion and the motion carried unanimously.
    5. Land, Water and Conservation
      Freddy Vang reported that the Aquatic Plant Management Council met March 16 and there are no plans at present for grass carp stocking this year. Mr. Vang reported that Little Pee Dee Scenic River Public Meetings will be held March 28, 29 and 30. Mr. Vang spoke of drought conditions in North Carolina. Mr. Vang reported that Bud Badr presented the SC Water Plan at the Interstate Council on Water Policy Meeting in Washington, Dc., two weeks ago and has been asked by The White House Science Advisor, Gene Whitney, to speak to his Water Availability and Quality Committee.
  13. Executive Session
    At this time Mr. Campbell made a motion that the Board hold an Executive Session to discuss contractual, legal and personnel matters. Mr. Davis seconded the motion and the motion carried unanimously.
  14. Return to Regular Session
    The Board returned to regular session and invited staff and guests to join the meeting.

    Mrs. Floyd made a motion to move forward with the acquisition of lands in Hampton and Marion Counties as they become available. Mr. Murray seconded the motion and the motion carried unanimously.

    Mr. Davis made a motion that the DNR accept the offer of Greenville County and the Greenville Recreation District to purchase Oak Grove Lake. Mr. Campbell seconded the motion, the motion carried with Mrs. Floyd abstaining.

    Mr. Campbell made a motion that the Board approve the nominations for the Governor’s Cup Billfishing Series Advisory Board as recommended by their Nominations Committee. Mrs. Floyd seconded the motion and the motion carried unanimously.
  15. Time and Location of the Next Meeting
    The April Board meeting will be held on Friday, April 21, 2006, at the Rembert C. Dennis Building, in Columbia.

    The May Board meeting will be held on May 19, 2006.
  16. Adjournment
    There being no further business to be brought before the DNR Board at this time, the meeting was adjourned.