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AB-573 Depredation: wild pigs: damage guidelines.(2017-2018)

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Date Published: 03/24/2017 04:00 AM
AB573:v98#DOCUMENT

Amended  IN  Assembly  March 23, 2017

CALIFORNIA LEGISLATURE— 2017–2018 REGULAR SESSION

Assembly Bill No. 573


Introduced by Assembly Member Bigelow

February 14, 2017


An act to amend Section 4181 4181.2 of the Fish and Game Code, relating to depredation.


LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST


AB 573, as amended, Bigelow. Depredation permits: Depredation: wild pigs. pigs: damage guidelines.
Under existing law, any owner or tenant of land or property that is being damaged or destroyed or is in danger of being damaged or destroyed by elk, bear, beaver, wild pig, or gray squirrels, wild pig may apply to the Department of Fish and Wildlife for a permit to kill that animal. The department, upon satisfactory evidence of the damage or destruction, is required to issue a revocable permit for the taking and disposition of the animal. Existing law requires the department to provide an applicant for a depredation permit to take wild pigs with written information that sets forth available options for wild pig control, including, but not limited to, depredation permits, allowing periodic access to licensed hunters, and holding special hunts, as specified. Existing law provides that any wild pig that is encountered while in the act of inflicting injury to, or damaging or destroying, or threatening to immediately damage or destroy, land or other property may be taken immediately by the owner or the owner’s employee or agent, as specified. Existing law defines “damage” for purposes of these provisions and requires the department to develop statewide guidelines to aid in determining the damage caused by wild pigs.
This bill would make nonsubstantive revisions to this latter provision. require the guidelines to consider additional factors and would require the department to update the guidelines as needed.
Vote: MAJORITY   Appropriation: NO   Fiscal Committee: NOYES   Local Program: NO  

The people of the State of California do enact as follows:


SECTION 1.

 Section 4181.2 of the Fish and Game Code is amended to read:

4181.2.
 (a) For the purposes of this article relating to damage caused by wild pigs, “damage” means loss or harm resulting from injury to person or property. The department shall develop statewide guidelines to aid in determining the damage caused by wild pigs. The guidelines shall consider various all of the following:
(1) The various uses of the land impacted by pigs.
(2) The extent of the damage incurred.
(3) Whether the type of land use and damage incurred should affect the strategy used to respond to the damage.
(b) The department shall update the guidelines developed pursuant to subdivision (a) as needed.

SECTION 1.Section 4181 of the Fish and Game Code is amended to read:
4181.

(a)Except as provided in Section 4181.1, any owner or tenant of land or property that is being damaged or destroyed or is in danger of being damaged or destroyed by elk, bear, beaver, wild pig, wild turkeys, or gray squirrels, may apply to the department for a permit to kill the animals. Subject to the limitations in subdivisions (b) and (d), the department, upon satisfactory evidence of the damage or destruction, actual or immediately threatened, shall issue a revocable permit for the taking and disposition of the animals under regulations adopted by the commission. The permit shall include a statement of the penalties that may be imposed for a violation of the permit conditions. Animals so taken shall not be sold or shipped from the premises on which they are taken except under instructions from the department. No iron-jawed or steel-jawed or any type of metal-jawed trap shall be used to take any bear pursuant to this section. No poison of any type may be used to take any gray squirrel or wild turkey pursuant to this section. The department shall designate the type of trap to be used to ensure the most humane method is used to trap gray squirrels. The department may require trapped squirrels to be released in parks or other nonagricultural areas. It is unlawful for any person to violate the terms of any permit issued under this section.

(b)The permit issued for taking bears pursuant to subdivision (a) shall contain the following facts:

(1)Why the issuance of the permit was necessary.

(2)What efforts were made to solve the problem without killing the bears.

(3)What corrective actions should be implemented to prevent reoccurrence.

(c)With respect to wild pigs, the department shall provide an applicant for a depredation permit to take wild pigs, or a person who reports taking wild pigs pursuant to subdivision (b) of Section 4181.1, with written information that sets forth available options for wild pig control, including, but not limited to, depredation permits, allowing periodic access to licensed hunters, and holding special hunts authorized pursuant to Section 4188. The department may maintain and make available to these persons lists of licensed hunters interested in wild pig hunting and lists of nonprofit organizations that are available to take possession of depredating wild pig carcasses.

(d)With respect to elk, the following procedures shall apply:

(1)Prior to issuing a depredation permit pursuant to subdivision (a), the department shall do all of the following:

(A)Verify the actual or immediately threatened damage or destruction.

(B)Provide a written summary of corrective measures necessary to immediately alleviate the problem.

(C)Determine the viability of the local herd, and determine the minimum population level needed to maintain the herd.

(D)Ensure the permit will not reduce the local herd below the minimum.

(E)Work with affected landowners to develop measures to achieve long-term resolution, while maintaining viability of the herd.

(2)After completing the statewide elk management plan pursuant to Section 3952, the department shall use the information and methods contained in the plan to meet the requirements of subparagraphs (C), (D), and (E) of paragraph (1).