Skip to main content

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (Commission) is committed to providing opportunity for public input at each Commission meeting. The Commission is offering the opportunity for stakeholders to provide their comments in advance as well as in person. Advance comments should be submitted no later than 5:00 pm on Friday, July 8th. Those comments can be submitted using the online comment form. If you would like to provide comments via mail, please send those comments to the following address:

FWC Commissioners
620 South Meridian Street
Tallahassee, Florida 32399

The Commission will also welcome public input in person using the speaker registration process and time limits. To accommodate as much input as possible from those attending, the Chairman reserves the right to designate the amount of time given to a topic or speaker. With regard to public comment on items not on the agenda, the Commission will have a designated time period on the agenda at the end of day two, July 14th. The deadline for registration to speak on items not on the agenda is 9:30 am. Those who wish to offer comments during this period will be asked to make sure their comments are not related to any agenda item.

The Chairman may opt to take action on any agenda item presented, even those listed as staff reports. Agenda items may be re-ordered or moved by the Chairman to accommodate scheduling issues. The meeting may include fact-finding field trips to learn about management and enforcement activities.

If any person decides to challenge any decision with respect to any matter considered at the meeting, they may need to ensure that a verbatim record of the proceedings is made, which includes testimony and evidence upon which the challenge is based.

Pursuant to the provisions of the Americans with Disabilities Act, any person requiring special accommodations to participate in this meeting should notify the agency at least 10 calendar days before the meeting by calling (850) 488-6411. Contact the agency using the Florida Relay Service at (800) 955-8771 (TDD) or (800) 955-8770 (Voice) if you are hearing or speech impaired.

For information on the area, you may call the Jacksonville Chamber of Commerce at (904) 366-6600 or visit their website at www.myjaxchamber.com.

8:30 a.m., Wednesday, July 13th

  1. Call to Order
    1. Call to Order
    2. Invocation and Pledge of Allegiance
  2. Administrative Matters
    1. Review and Approve May 2022 Commission Meeting Minutes
    2. Approve Regular Meeting Agenda
    3. Approve Consent Agenda
      Details for all consent agenda items are listed at the end of this document. Any questions about a consent agenda item should be addressed to agency staff prior to the Commission meeting. Any item not approved as part of the consent agenda may be moved to the regular agenda or postponed at the discretion of the Chairman.
  3. Executive Director’s Report
  4. Awards and Recognition
    1. Featured Artist Recognition
    2. 2020 Jim Stevenson Resource Manager of the Year Award
    3. FWC Prosecutor of the Year Award
    4. Manatee Unusual Mortality Event Recognition
    5. Commissioner Sole Recognition

BREAK

  1. Items Requiring Action
    1. Final Rule – Redfish. Staff will present final rule amendments for redfish that include new management regions and modified recreational bag, vessel, and off-the-water transport limits. The final rule amendments are based upon evaluation of the redfish fishery in each proposed management region using new management metrics as well as stakeholder feedback. Public comment on this agenda item will be limited to no more than 1 hour.
    2. Proposed Rule – Goliath Grouper Spawning Aggregations. Staff will present proposed rules to reduce potential impacts on goliath grouper from catch-and-release fishing at spawning aggregation sites and address some concerns raised by the southeast Florida dive community. These rules would prohibit the possession and use of handlining gear at aggregation sites in Atlantic state waters during goliath spawning season. If approved, staff will return to a future Commission Meeting for a final hearing. Public comment on this agenda item will be limited to no more than 1 hour.
      Summary Memo | 68B-4.002 | 68B-4.0088

ANTICIPATED LUNCH BREAK

  1. Staff Reports
    1. Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council (GMFMC) Report. Staff will report on actions and discussions from the GMFMC’s June 21-24 meeting. Expected topics include king mackerel, gag grouper, greater amberjack, various other reef fish, and for-hire electronic reporting requirements. Public comment on this agenda item will be limited to no more than 30 minutes.
      Summary Memo
    2. South Atlantic Fishery Management Council (SAFMC) Report. Staff will report on actions and discussions from the SAFMC’s June 13-17 meeting. Expected topics include dolphinfish, gag grouper, greater amberjack, red snapper, and several other reef fish species. Public comment on this agenda item will be limited to no more than 30 minutes.
      Summary Memo
  2. Items Requiring Action
    1. Proposed Final Rule – Updates to Captive Wildlife Regulations. Staff will request approval to modify rule language in captive wildlife rules 68A-6.018, 68-6.001, and 68A-6.009, F.A.C. to require all captive wildlife permittees to report all injuries from captive wildlife which results in treatment beyond basic first aid (except if occurring to the permitee or qualified employee); report all injuries which result in serious bodily injury regardless of the victim’s status, and all escapes of captive wildlife. Associated definitions for “basic first aid” and “serious bodily injury” are also included for clarity. Other changes include prohibiting the breaching of a public safety barrier, elevating the threshold at which a violation occurs for an injury by captive wildlife, providing flexibility for caging requirements for animals or species which exhibit digging or burrowing, and clarifying language regarding open top enclosures and barriers. These changes will better inform the Commission of injuries and escapes which will lead to improved public safety and management. Public comment on this agenda item will be limited to no more than 1 hour.
      NOTE: Staff is requesting Commission approval to advertise the proposed rule and file for adoption as soon as possible. If the rule is approved for final adoption, Commission staff will file the rule as allowed by s. 120.54(3), Florida Statutes, without further public hearing.
      Summary Memo | 68A-6.018 Reference | 68A-6.001 | 68A-6.009 | 68A-6.018
    2. Final Rule – Imperiled Beach Nesting Birds. Staff will seek final approval for Species Conservation Measures and Permitting Guidelines for four State-Threatened beach-nesting birds: least tern, black skimmer, snowy plover and American oystercatcher. Staff have revised the Guidelines to incorporate additional feedback and will provide an update and overview to the Commission. Guidelines are incorporated into rule by reference, and staff will seek approval to publish a Notice of Change and file for adoption as soon as possible. Public comment on this agenda item will be limited to no more than 1 hour.
      Summary Memo | 68A-27.003
  3. Recess Wednesday’s portion of the meeting no later than 6:00 p.m.

8:30 a.m., Thursday, July 14th

  1. Call to Order
  2. Items Requiring Action
    1. Proposed Final Rule – Vessel Turn-In Program. Staff will present proposed rule language which will incorporate guidelines and an application form creating a Vessel Turn-In Program (VTIP). Once created, the VTIP program will allow the owner of a vessel determined by law enforcement to be at risk of becoming derelict, as provided in section 327.4017, F.S., to surrender their vessel and vessel title to the Commission to be destroyed without penalty or cost to the vessel owner. The program will reduce the fiscal and environmental impacts of derelict vessel removals by removing and destroying vessels from the waters of this State before they become derelict. Public comment on this agenda item will be limited to no more than 1 hour.
      NOTE: Staff is requesting Commission approval to advertise the proposed rule and file for adoption as soon as possible. If the rule is approved for final adoption, Commission staff will file the rule as allowed by s. 120.54(3), Florida Statutes, without further public hearing.
      Summary Memo | 68D-15.003 | Waiver and Release | Application | Guidelines | Pre-Approval
    2. Final Rule – Crappie Regulations. Staff will present final rule language for the removal of lake specific Black Crappie regulations at eleven different lakes which will revert to statewide length and bag limit regulations. The need for this rule review was identified in the Black Crappie Management Plan, and the rule changes are based on an evaluation of the fishery, stakeholder feedback and human dimensions information gathered during the rule review process. Public comment on this agenda item will be limited to no more than 1 hour.
      Summary Memo | 68A-20.005

BREAK

  1. Staff Reports
    1. Wild Turkey Management Program Update. Staff will present a high-level overview of the Wild Turkey Management Program, highlighting elements of the 2019-2028 Strategic Plan, the nationally recognized Habitat Improvement Cost Share program, recent program developments, and planned research projects. Public comment on this agenda item will be limited to no more than 30 minutes. (This item may be moved to day 1 or postponed).
      Summary Memo
    2. Youth Hunting Program of Florida Update. Staff will present a high-level overview of the Youth Hunting Program of Florida, highlighting recruitment and retention of youth hunters, partnerships with volunteers and landowners, recent updates, and future goals of the program. Public comment on this agenda item will be limited to no more than 30 minutes. (This item may be moved to day 1 or postponed).
    3. Shoal Bass Conservation in the Chipola River. Shoal Bass are identified as a Species of Greatest Conservation Need (SGCN) in both Florida and Georgia due to their limited habitat range, decreasing habitat availability, and potential genetic hybridization. Effects of Hurricane Michael in October 2018 altered Shoal Bass habitats and populations in the Chipola River, the only population that exists in Florida, and the only remaining genetically pure population of this species. Staff will provide an overview of conservational measures taken over the past three years. These include the results of regulation management and stock enhancement of genetically pure Shoal Bass to supplement, enhance, and protect the wild population. Public comment on this agenda item will be limited to no more than 30 minutes. (This item may be moved to day 1 or postponed).
      Summary Memo
  2. Public Comment on Items Not on the Agenda
    Public comment on items not on the agenda will be limited to no more than 3 hours.
  3. Future Agenda Items
  4. Commissioner Exchange
  5. Adjournment
    The next Commission Meeting is scheduled for September 28 – 29, 2022, commencing at 8:30 a.m. each day.

Consent Agenda
Any questions about consent agenda items should be addressed to agency staff prior to the Commission meeting.

  1. R-3 Fishing Grant Program Eligibility Requirements. Altering program eligibility requirements for Florida’s R3 Fishing Grant Program as referenced in Rule 68-1.003(14) to include all grade levels.
    NOTE: Staff is requesting Commission approval to advertise the proposed rule and file for adoption as soon as possible. If the rule is approved for final adoption, Commission staff will file the rule as allowed by s. 120.54(3), Florida Statutes, without further public hearing.