Law:Title 6. Production, Processing, And Sale Of Animal Products. Subtitle A. Bees And Nonlivestock Animal Industry from Chapter 134. Regulation Of Aquaculture (Texas)

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Subtitle A. Bees And Nonlivestock Animal Industry

Contents

Chapter 134. Regulation Of Aquaculture

Subchapter A. General Provisions

Section  134.001.  Definitions.

In this chapter only:

(1)  "Cultured species" means aquatic animals raised under conditions where at least a portion of their life cycle is controlled by an aquaculturist.

(2)  "Exotic species" means a nonindigenous plant or animal not normally found in the public waters in the state.

(3)  "Aquaculturist" or "fish farmer" means any person engaged in aquaculture or fish farming.

(4)  "Aquaculture" or "fish farming" means the business of producing and selling cultured species raised in private facilities. Aquaculture or fish farming is an agricultural activity.

(5)  "Private facility" means a pond, tank, cage, or other structure capable of holding cultured species in confinement wholly within or on private land or water or within or on permitted public land or water.

(6)  "Operator" means any person or entity in control of or having responsibility for the daily operation of an aquaculture facility.

(7)  "Commercial aquaculture facility" means an aquaculture facility designed primarily for the production of cultured species for the purposes of sale, barter, or exchange.

(8)  "New aquaculture facility" means a commercial aquaculture facility whose owner or operator initially sought waste discharge authorization from the Texas Natural Resource Conservation Commission after January 19, 1999.

(9)  "Coastal zone" has the meaning assigned by Section 33.004, Natural Resources Code.

Acts 1975, 64th Leg., ch. 545, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1975. Renumbered from Parks & Wildlife Code, Sec. 48.001 and amended by Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 637, Sec. 3, eff. Sept. 1, 1989. Amended by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 491, Sec. 11, eff. Sept. 1, 1991; Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 1239, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.



Section  134.002.  Aquaculture Program.

The department may:

(1)  promote aquaculture products;

(2)  provide technical assistance, including demonstrations, to aquaculturists;

(3)  provide coordinated support through colleges and universities and other governmental entities;

(4)  solicit financial support from the federal government for the aquaculture industry;

(5)  develop and expand the aquaculture industry to:

(A)  stimulate the state's economy; and

(B)  offer alternative crop opportunities; and

(6)  perform other functions and activities as required by law.

Added by Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 637, Sec. 3, eff. Sept. 1, 1989. Amended by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 491, Sec. 11, eff. Sept. 1, 1991; Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 1239, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.



Section  134.003.  Program Administrator; Staff.

(a) The department shall designate a person to administer the department's aquaculture program.

(b)  The department or the department's program administrator may employ the necessary staff to carry out the functions and duties of the department under this chapter.

Added by Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 637, Sec. 3, eff. Sept. 1, 1989. Amended by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 491, Sec. 11, eff. Sept. 1, 1991; Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 1239, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.



Section  134.004.  Contracts.

The department, the Texas Natural Resource Conservation Commission, the Texas Animal Health Commission, and the Parks and Wildlife Department may contract with state, federal, or private entities for assistance in carrying out the purposes of this chapter.

Added by Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 637, Sec. 3, eff. Sept. 1, 1989. Amended by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 491, Sec. 11, eff. Sept. 1, 1991; Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 1239, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.



Section  134.005.  Rules.

(a) The department and the Parks and Wildlife Commission shall adopt rules to carry out their respective duties under this chapter.

(b)  The department by rule shall establish record-keeping requirements for a commercial aquaculture facility.

(c)  The rules may not conflict with rules issued under Section 134.020.

Added by Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 637, Sec. 3, eff. Sept. 1, 1989. Amended by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 491, Sec. 11, eff. Sept. 1, 1991; Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 1239, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.



Section  134.006.  Aquaculture Fund.

(a) The aquaculture fund is established in the state treasury.

(b)  The department shall deposit to the credit of the fund the fees received from licenses issued under this chapter.

(c)  The aquaculture fund may be used only to administer this chapter.

Added by Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 637, Sec. 3, eff. Sept. 1, 1989. Amended by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 491, Sec. 11, eff. Sept. 1, 1991; Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 1239, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.



Subchapter B. Aquaculture License

Section  134.011.  Licensing.

(a) A person may not operate an aquaculture facility without first having acquired from the department an aquaculture license.

(b)  The department shall:

(1)  maintain an application process for an aquaculture license;

(2)  license aquaculture facilities; and

(3)  regulate aquaculture operations.

(c)  The department shall provide a copy of each aquaculture license application to the Parks and Wildlife Department and the Texas Natural Resource Conservation Commission.

(d)  The department may not issue a license for a new aquaculture facility unless the facility has been authorized by the Texas Natural Resource Conservation Commission to dispose of wastewater or the facility will not dispose of wastewater into waters in the state.

Acts 1975, 64th Leg., ch. 545, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1975. Renumbered from Parks & Wildlife Code, Sec. 48.002 and amended by Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 637, Sec. 3, eff. Sept. 1, 1989. Amended by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 491, Sec. 11, eff. Sept. 1, 1991; Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 1239, Sec. 2, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.



Section  134.012.  Fish Farm Vehicle License Required.

(a) Except as provided by Subsection (b), if a vehicle is used to transport cultured species from a private facility and the cultured species are sold from the vehicle, the vehicle is required to have a fish farm vehicle license.

(b)  A fish farm vehicle license is not required for a vehicle owned and operated by the holder of an aquaculture license.

(c)  A person who operates a vehicle that is owned by the holder of an aquaculture license must keep a copy of the license in the vehicle when transporting cultured species from a private facility.

Acts 1975, 64th Leg., ch. 545, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1975. Renumbered from Parks & Wildlife Code, Sec. 48.003 by Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 637, Sec. 3, eff. Sept. 1, 1989. Amended by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 491, Sec. 11, eff. Sept. 1, 1991; Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 1239, Sec. 2, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.



Section  134.013.  Additional Requirements For Shrimp Production Within The Coastal Zone.

(a) A commercial aquaculture facility located within the coastal zone and engaged in the production of shrimp:

(1)  must obtain a site-specific wastewater discharge permit from the Texas Natural Resource Conservation Commission before the facility may discharge wastewater if the facility will discharge wastewater or another substance into waters in the state;

(2)  must provide the report described in Subsection (b) and is subject to the review described in Section 134.031(c) if the aquaculture facility applies for a site-specific discharge permit;

(3)  must obtain an amendment to its site-specific discharge permit from the Texas Natural Resource Conservation Commission before the facility may increase the amount of discharge or change the nature of the discharge above levels allowed by the wastewater discharge permit issued by the Texas Natural Resource Conservation Commission, except as otherwise provided by Section 26.0191, Water Code; and

(4)  must provide the report described by Subsection (b) and is subject to the review described in Section 134.031(c) before the facility may increase the amount of discharge, or change the nature of the discharge above levels allowed by the wastewater discharge permit issued by the Texas Natural Resource Conservation Commission, except as otherwise provided by Section 26.0191, Water Code.

(b)  Before issuing a license to a new aquaculture facility designed for the commercial production of shrimp that will discharge wastewater into waters in the state within the coastal zone, the department shall require the applicant to provide a report describing the existing environmental conditions at the proposed site, including aquatic habitat and the conditions of the waters in the state into which a discharge is proposed. The report must provide an assessment of any potential impacts of wastewater discharges on sensitive aquatic habitats in the area of the proposed site, significant impacts related to the construction or operation of the facility, and any mitigation actions proposed by the applicant.

(c)  The applicant must provide the report required under Subsection (b) to the Texas Natural Resource Conservation Commission and the Parks and Wildlife Department. The Texas Natural Resource Conservation Commission may not issue a wastewater discharge permit to a new aquaculture facility designed for the commercial production of shrimp and located within the coastal zone without consideration of the report described by Subsection (b).

(d)  In coordination with the department and the Parks and Wildlife Department, the Texas Natural Resource Conservation Commission shall establish guidelines relating to the report required by Subsection (b) that:

(1)  give public notice as to what the reporting requirements include; and

(2)  minimize duplication of reporting requirements and other requirements related to the application for a wastewater discharge permit.

Acts 1975, 64th Leg., ch. 545, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1975. Renumbered from Parks & Wildlife Code, Sec. 48.004 and amended by Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 637, Sec. 3, eff. Sept. 1, 1989. Amended by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 491, Sec. 11, eff. Sept. 1, 1991; Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 1239, Sec. 2, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.



Section 134.014.  License Fees.

The department shall issue an aquaculture license or a fish farm vehicle license on completion of applicable license requirements and the payment of a fee by the applicant, as provided by department rule.

Renumbered from Parks & Wildlife Code, Sec. 48.005 and amended by Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 637, Sec. 3, eff. Sept. 1, 1989. Amended by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 491, Sec. 11, eff. Sept. 1, 1991; Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 419, Sec. 2.57, eff. Sept. 1, 1995; Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 1239, Sec. 2, eff. Sept. 1, 1999; Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 265, Sec. 7, eff. June 18, 2003; Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 677, Sec. 5, eff. June 20, 2003.

Amended by:

Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 1052, Sec. 6, eff. September 1, 2009.



Section  134.015.  Form, Duration, And Renewal Of License.

(a) An aquaculture license must be on a numbered form provided by the department.

(b)  A license is valid for two years after the date of issuance. The department shall renew a license on submission by the licensee of a completed application and a renewal fee, as provided by department rule, unless the department determines that the licensee has violated this chapter or a rule adopted under this chapter.

(c)  The department may suspend an aquaculture license if it is determined that the licensee has violated this chapter, a rule adopted under this chapter, or Section 66.007, Parks and Wildlife Code.

Acts 1975, 64th Leg., ch. 545, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1975. Renumbered from Parks & Wildlife Code, Sec. 48.006 and amended by Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 637, Sec. 3, eff. Sept. 1, 1989. Amended by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 491, Sec. 11, eff. Sept. 1, 1991; Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 419, Sec. 2.58, eff. Sept. 1, 1995; Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 1239, Sec. 3, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.



Section  134.016.  Records.

(a) The holder of an aquaculture license shall maintain a record of sales of cultured species for a period of time of not less than one year. The record is open for inspection by designated employees of the Parks and Wildlife Department and the department during normal business hours.

(b)  A record of sale for commercially protected finfish as provided by Section 66.020, Parks and Wildlife Code, shall contain at least the following information:

(1)  invoice number;

(2)  date of shipment;

(3)  name and address of shipper;

(4)  name and address of receiver; and

(5)  number and weight of whole fish or fillets, by species, contained in the shipment.

Acts 1975, 64th Leg., ch. 545, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1975. Renumbered from Parks & Wildlife Code, Sec. 48.008 and amended by Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 637, Sec. 3, eff. Sept. 1, 1989. Amended by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 491, Sec. 11, eff. Sept. 1, 1991; Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 1239, Sec. 4, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.



Section  134.017.  Culture And Sale Of Cultured Species.

Cultured species of any kind, size, or number may be raised, possessed, transported, and sold anywhere, at any time, to any person, for any purpose by the holder of an aquaculture license unless prohibited by Parks and Wildlife Code or regulation.

Acts 1975, 64th Leg., ch. 545, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1975. Renumbered from Parks & Wildlife Code, Sec. 48.009 and amended by Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 637, Sec. 3, eff. Sept. 1, 1989. Amended by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 491, Sec. 11, eff. Sept. 1, 1991.



Section 134.018.  License Not Required For Sale Of Certain Fish.

(a) An aquaculture license is not required for the sale of fish:

(1)  that are not on the Parks and Wildlife Department's list of exotic fish, shellfish, and aquatic plants;

(2)  collected from a private facility on private land by a person who holds an aquaculture license;

(3)  by the owner of the private facility from which the fish were collected;

(4)  to manage the fish population in the private facility; and

(5)  to a person who holds an aquaculture license.

(b)  Not later than the 30th day after the sale of fish under this section, the buyer who holds an aquaculture license shall submit a copy of the invoice for the sale to the Parks and Wildlife Department.  The seller and the buyer shall maintain a record of the sale for not less than one year.  The record must contain at least:

(1)  the invoice number;

(2)  the date of the sale;

(3)  the name and address of the seller;

(4)  the physical location of the facility from which the fish were collected;

(5)  the name, address, and aquaculture license number of the buyer; and

(6)  the number of fish sold.

(c)  Sections 66.020 and 66.111, Parks and Wildlife Code, do not apply to a sale under this section.

Added by Acts 2005, 79th Leg., Ch. 759, Sec. 1, eff. September 1, 2005.



Section  134.019.  Marketing Of Cultured Redfish And Cultured Speckled Sea Trout.

(a) The commissioner shall adopt rules providing for the raising, sale, transportation, and possession of cultured redfish and cultured speckled sea trout raised by an aquaculturist licensed under this chapter.

(b)  The rules shall provide for and require the identification of cultured redfish and cultured speckled sea trout raised by an aquaculturist under this chapter.

Renumbered from Parks & Wildlife Code, Sec. 48.0101 and amended by Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 637, Sec. 3, eff. Sept. 1, 1989. Amended by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 491, Sec. 11, eff. Sept. 1, 1991.



Section  134.020.  Exotic Species.

(a) The Parks and Wildlife Commission shall adopt rules regulating the importation, possession, propagation, and sale of harmful or potentially harmful exotic species by an aquaculturist.

(b)  The Parks and Wildlife Commission, after consulting with the commissioner and an individual designated by the chairman of the board of regents of The Texas A&M University System, shall determine and publish a list of harmful or potentially harmful exotic species that an aquaculturist may not import, possess, or sell as part of the person's aquaculture activities.

(c)  An aquaculturist may not release in public water harmful or potentially harmful exotic species except as provided by Section 66.007, Parks and Wildlife Code.

(d)  The Parks and Wildlife Department shall enforce the rules adopted under this section.

Added by Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 637, Sec. 3, eff. Sept. 1, 1989. Amended by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 491, Sec. 11, eff. Sept. 1, 1991.



Section  134.021.  Federal Grants.

Federal grants for research and development of commercial fisheries may be used for individual aquaculture projects.

Acts 1975, 64th Leg., ch. 545, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1975. Renumbered from Parks & Wildlife Code, Sec. 48.011 and amended by Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 637, Sec. 3, eff. Sept. 1, 1989. Amended by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 491, Sec. 11, eff. Sept. 1, 1991.



Section  134.022.  Aquaculture Facility Protected.

(a) A person, other than the owner or operator of an aquaculture facility, may not fish on an aquaculture facility without the consent of the owner or operator.

(b)  A person may not unlawfully, as defined by Section 31.03(b), Penal Code, acquire or otherwise exercise control over cultured species with intent to deprive the owner of the cultured species.

Renumbered from Parks & Wildlife Code, Sec. 48.013 and amended by Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 637, Sec. 3, eff. Sept. 1, 1989. Amended by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 491, Sec. 11, eff. Sept. 1, 1991.



Section  134.023.  Penalties.

(a) Except as provided by Subsection (b), (c), or (d) of this section, a person who violates any provision of this chapter or rule adopted under this chapter commits an offense that is a Class C misdemeanor.

(b)  A person who violates Section 134.019 or 134.020 commits an offense that is a Class B misdemeanor.

(c)  A person who violates Section 134.022(b) of this code by taking cultured species of a value of $200 or more but less than $750 commits an offense that is a Class A misdemeanor.

(d)  A person who violates Section 134.022(b) of this code by taking cultured species of a value of $750 or more commits an offense that is a felony of the third degree.

Added by Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 637, Sec. 3, eff. Sept. 1, 1989. Amended by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 491, Sec. 11, eff. Sept. 1, 1991; Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 1239, Sec. 5, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.



Subchapter C. Interagency Cooperation

Section  134.031.  Memorandum Of Understanding.

(a) The department, the Texas Natural Resource Conservation Commission, and the Parks and Wildlife Department shall enter into a memorandum of understanding for the regulation of matters related to aquaculture.

(b)  The Texas Natural Resource Conservation Commission, after receiving an application for a wastewater discharge authorization from an aquaculture facility, shall provide a copy of the application to the department and the Parks and Wildlife Department.

(c)  The department, the Texas Natural Resource Conservation Commission, and the Parks and Wildlife Department shall each appoint one member of a three-member application review committee to review the wastewater discharge authorization application to ensure that the proposed discharge will not adversely affect a bay, an estuary, or other waters in the state.

(d)  The Parks and Wildlife Department, in consultation with the Texas Natural Resource Conservation Commission, may establish general guidelines that identify sensitive aquatic habitat within the coastal zone. The general guidelines must include factors such as the presence of sea grass beds, depth of receiving waters, and amount of tidal exchange.

(e)  If the Parks and Wildlife Department establishes the guidelines described in Subsection (d), the Parks and Wildlife Department must provide the guidelines to the Texas Natural Resource Conservation Commission and the department.

(f)  If the Parks and Wildlife Department has established the guidelines described in Subsection (d), the Texas Natural Resource Conservation Commission must consider the guidelines when reviewing wastewater discharge authorization applications for new aquaculture facilities located within the coastal zone, or expansion of existing facilities located within the coastal zone if the expansion will increase the amount of discharge, or change the nature of the discharge, above levels allowed by the wastewater discharge permit.

(g)  In developing the guidelines under Subsection (d) applicable to aquaculture facilities engaged in the production of shrimp in the coastal zone, the Parks and Wildlife Department, in consultation with the Texas Natural Resource Conservation Commission, shall consider the best management practices that the facilities developed under the direction of the Texas Natural Resource Conservation Commission.

(h)  In the development of siting guidelines for aquaculture facilities engaged in the production of shrimp in the coastal zone, the best management practices developed by the facilities shall be considered.

Added by Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 1239, Sec. 6, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.


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