KEY: wildlife, cooperative wildlife management unit
Date of Enactment or Last Substantive Amendment: February 7, 2012
Notice of Continuation: May 6, 2013
Authorizing, and Implemented or Interpreted law: 23-23-3
(1) Under authority of Section 23-23-3, this rule provides the standards and procedures applicable to Cooperative Wildlife Management units organized for the hunting of big game or turkey.
(2) Cooperative Wildlife Management units are established to:
(a) increase wildlife resources;
(b) provide income to landowners;
(c) provide the general public access to private and public lands for hunting big game or turkey within a Cooperative Wildlife Management Unit;
(d) create satisfying hunting opportunities; and
(e) provide adequate protection to landowners who open their lands for hunting;
(f) provide landowners an incentive to manage lands to protect and sustain wildlife habitat and benefit wildlife.
(1) Terms used in this rule are defined in Sections 23-13-2 and 23-23-2.
(2) In addition:
(a) "CWMU" means Cooperative Wildlife Management Unit.
(b) "CWMU agent" means a person appointed by the landowner association member or the landowner association operator to protect private property within the CWMU.
(c) "General public" means all persons except landowner association members, landowner association operators and their spouse or dependant children.
(d) "Landowner association " means a landowner or group of landowners of private land organized as a single entity for the purpose of applying for, becoming and operating a CWMU.
(e) "Landowner association member" means an individual landowner participating in the landowner association.
(f) "Landowner association operator" means a person designated by the landowner association to operate the CWMU.
(g) "Voucher" means a document issued by the division to a landowner association member or landowner association operator, allowing a landowner association member or landowner association operator, to designate who may purchase a CWMU big game or turkey hunting permit from a division office.
(1)(a) The minimum allowable acreage for a CWMU is 10,000 contiguous acres, except as provided in Subsection (3).
(b) The land comprising Domesticated Elk Facilities and Domesticated Elk Hunting Parks, as defined in Section 4-39-102(2) and Rules R58-18 and R58-20, shall not be included as part of any big game or turkey CWMU.
(2)(a) No land parcel shall be included in more than one CWMU.
(b) Separate hunt boundaries by species on a CWMU are not permitted.
(3)(a) The Wildlife Board may renew a CWMU that is less than 10,000 acres with land parcels that adjoin corner-to-corner or containing noncontiguous parcels provided the CWMU legally possessed a CWMU Certificate of Registration during the previous year, allowing for acreage less than 10,000 contiguous acres, corner-to-corner land parcels, or noncontiguous land parcels.
(b) The Wildlife Board may approve a new CWMU for deer, pronghorn or turkey that is at least 5,000 contiguous acres provided:
(i) the property is capable of independently maintaining the presence of the respective species and harboring them during the period of hunting;
(ii) the property is capable of accommodating the anticipated number of hunters and providing a reasonable hunting opportunity;
(iii) the property exhibits enforceable boundaries clearly identifiable to both the public and private hunters; and
(iv) the CWMU contributes to meeting division wildlife management objectives
(c) The Wildlife Board may renew or approve a new CWMU for deer, pronghorn, elk or moose that fails to meet the acreage or parcel configuration requirements in Subsection (1), or the exceptions in Subsection (3)(a) and(b), provided the following procedures are satisfied.
(i) the applicant submits a written request for special considerations to the CWMU Advisory Committee on or before August 1st annually;
(ii) the applicant submits to a one year waiting period while the CWMU Advisory Committee, Division and Wildlife Board consider, verify and decide the merits of the request for special considerations.
(iii) upon receipt of a request for special considerations, the CWMU Advisory Committee will immediately forward the request to DWR for review and recommendations.
(iv) the DWR will review the request for special considerations and make recommendations to the CWMU Advisory Committee within 180 days of receipt.
(v) the CWMU Advisory Committee will consider the request for special considerations and the Division's recommendations, and make recommendations to the Wildlife Board on the advisability of granting the CWMU application.
(4)(a) Cooperative Wildlife Management Units organized for hunting big game or turkey, shall consist of private land to the extent practicable.
(b) The Wildlife Board may approve a CWMU containing public land only if:
(i) the public land is completely surrounded by private land or is otherwise inaccessible to the general public;
(ii) the public land is necessary to establish an enforceable boundary clearly identifiable to both the general public and public and private permit holders; or
(iii) the public land is necessary to achieve statewide and unit management objectives.
(c) If any public land is included within a CWMU, the landowner association must meet applicable federal and state land use requirements on the public land.
(d) The Wildlife Board shall increase the number of permits or hunting opportunities made available to the general public to reflect the proportional habitat on public land to private land within the CWMU pursuant to Subsection R657-37-4(3)(a)(iv).
(5) Land parcels that adjoin corner-to-corner shall not be considered contiguous for the purpose of meeting minimum acreage requirements for new CWMU's except as specifically authorized by the Wildlife Board pursuant to Subsection (3)(c)).
(6) The intent is to establish CWMUs consisting of blocks of land that function well as hunting units. The Wildlife Board may deny a CWMU that meets technical requirements but does not constitute a good hunting unit.
(1) The landowner association member must manage the CWMU in compliance with a CWMU Management Plan consistent with statewide and unit management objectives for the respective big game or turkey management unit and approved by the Wildlife Board.
(2)(a) The CWMU Management Plan may be approved by the Wildlife Board for a period of three years, concurrent with the CWMU Certificate of Registration .
(b) The CWMU Management Plan may be amended as requested by the Wildlife Board, the division or the CWMU landowner association member or operator.
(3)(a) The CWMU Management Plan must include:
(i) species management objectives for the CWMU that are consistent with statewide and unit management objectives for the respective big game or turkey management unit;;
(ii) antlerless harvest objectives;
(iii)(1) dates that the general public with buck or bull CWMU permits will be allowed to hunt in accordance with R657-37-7(3)(a); or
(2) a detailed explanation of how comparable hunting opportunities will be provided to both the private and public permit holders on the CWMU as required in Section 23-23-7.5;
(iv) a clear explanation of the purpose for including public land within the CWMU boundaries, if public land is included;
(v) an explanation of how the public is compensated by the CWMU when public land is included;
(vi) rules and guidelines used to regulate a permit holder's conduct as a guest on the CWMU;
(vii) County Recorder Plat Maps or equivalent maps, dated by receipt of purchase within 30 days of the initial or renewal application deadline for a certificate of registration, depicting boundaries and ownership for all property within the CWMU;
(viii) two original 1:100,000 USGS maps, which must be filed in the appropriate regional division office and the Salt Lake office, depicting all interior and exterior boundaries of the proposed CWMU;
(ix) strategies and methods that avoid adverse impacts to adjacent landowners resulting from the operation of the CWMU, including the provisions provided in Section R657-37-7(6); and
(x) any request for reciprocal agreements.
(b) The division shall, review all CWMU Management Plans and make recommendations to the Wildlife Board.
(1) An application for a CWMU Certificate of Registration must be completed and returned to the regional division office where the proposed CWMU is located no later than August 1.
(2) The application must be accompanied by:
(a) the CWMU Management Plan as described in R657-37-4(3), including all maps;
(b)(i) a petition containing the signature and acreage of each participating landowner agreeing to establish and operate the CWMU as provided in this rule and Title 23, Chapter 23 of the Wildlife Resources Code; or
(ii) a copy of a legal contract or agreement identifying:
(A) the private land;
(B) the duration of the contract or agreement; and
(C) the names and signatures of landowners conveying the hunting rights to the CWMU landowner association member or landowner association operator.
(c) the name of the designated landowner association operator; and
(d) the nonrefundable handling fee.
(3) The division may reject any application that is incomplete or completed incorrectly.
(4) The division shall forward the complete and correct application and required documentation to the Regional Advisory Councils and Wildlife Board for consideration.
(5) Upon receiving the application and recommendation from the division, the Wildlife Board may:
(a) authorize the issuance of a certificate of registration, for three years, allowing the landowner association member to operate a CWMU; or
(b) deny the application and provide the landowner association member with reasons for the decision.
(6) The Wildlife Board shall consider any violation of the provisions of Title 23, Wildlife Resources Code and any information provided by the division, landowners, and the public in determining whether to authorize the issuance of a certificate of registration for a CWMU.
(7) A CWMU Certificate of Registration is issued on a three year basis and shall expire on January 31, providing:
(a) no changes in CWMU boundaries occur; and
(b) the certificate of registration is not suspended or revoked prior to the expiration date.
(8) The CWMU application/agreement is binding upon the landowner association members, landowner association operators and all successors in interest to the CWMU property or the hunting rights thereon as it pertains to allowing public permit holders reasonable access to all CWMU property during the applicable hunting seasons for purposes of filling the permit.
(1) A request for an amendment to a certificate of registration must be made in writing and submitted to the appropriate regional division office where the CWMU is located for any change in:
(a) permit numbers or allocation;
(b) season dates;
(d) operator; or
(e) any other matter related to the management and operation of the CWMU not originally included in the certificate of registration.
(2) Requests for amendments dealing with permit numbers, permit allocation or season dates:
(a) may be initiated by the CWMU or the division;
(b) are due on August 1 of the year prior to when hunting is to occur; and
(c) shall be forwarded to the Regional Advisory Councils and Wildlife Board for consideration and upon approval by the Wildlife Board, an amendment to the original certificate of registration shall be issued in writing..
(3) All other requests for amendments shall be reviewed by the region and Wildlife Section and upon approval by the director an amendment to the original certificate of registration shall be issued in writing.
(1)(a) A CWMU Certificate of Registration must be renewed every three years if no changes in CWMU boundaries occur, or annually if boundary changes occur and may be approved by the division, except as provided in Subsections (b) and (c).
(b) If any changes occur in the activities or information authorized in the current certificate of registration or CWMU Management Plan, the renewal must be considered for approval by the Wildlife Board.
(c)(i) A CWMU Certificate of Registration shall not be renewed if:
(A) thirty-four percent or more of the private lands included in the renewal application were not included in the previous certificate of registration; or
(B) thirty-four percent or more of the private land within the CWMU is under new ownership.
(ii) If a CWMU Certificate of Registration is not renewable under this Subsection, an application for a new CWMU Certificate of Registration must be completed as provided in Section R657-37-5.
(2) An application for renewal of a certificate of registration must be completed and returned to the regional division office where the CWMU is established no later than August 1.
(3) The renewal application must identify all changes from the previous CWMU Certificate of Registration or CWMU Management Plan.
(4) The renewal application must be accompanied by:
(a) the CWMU Management Plan as described in Section R657-37-4(3); and
(b) all maps as described in Section R657-37-4(3) if the CWMU boundaries have changed; and
(c)(i) a petition containing the signature and acreage of each participating landowner agreeing to establish and operate the CWMU as provided in this rule and Title 23, Chapter 23 of the Wildlife Resources Code; or
(C) the names and signatures of landowners conveying the hunting rights to the CWMU agent or landowner association operator;
(d) the name of the designated landowner association operator; and
(e) the nonrefundable handling fee.
(5) The division may reject any application that is incomplete or completed incorrectly.
(6) The division shall consider:
(a) the previous performance of the CWMU, including the actions of the landowner association member or landowner association operator when reviewing renewal of the certificate of registration; and
(b) any violation of Title 23, Wildlife Resources Code, this rule, stipulations contained in the certificate of registration and all other relevant information provided from any source related to the applicant's fitness to operate a CWMU.
(7) The division shall:
(a) approve the renewal Certificate of Registration and forward the permit recommendations to the Regional Advisory Councils and Wildlife Board; or
(b) deny the renewal Certificate of Registration and state the reasons for denial in writing to the applicant; and
(i) forward the application, reason for denial and recommendation to the Regional Advisory Councils and Wildlife Board; and
(iii) provide the applicant with information for seeking Wildlife Board review of the denial.
(8) Upon receiving the division's recommendation as provided in Subsection (b)(i), the Wildlife Board may consider:
(9) A CWMU Certificate of Registration for renewal is authorized for three years and shall expire on January 31, providing the certificate of registration is not revoked or suspended prior to the expiration date.
(1)(a) A CWMU must be operated by a landowner association member who owns land within the CWMU or a landowner association operator who leases or otherwise controls hunting on land within the CWMU.
(b) A landowner association member or landowner association operator may appoint CWMU agents to protect private property within the CWMU; however, the landowner association member or landowner association operator must assume ultimate responsibility for the operation of the CWMU.
(2)(a) A landowner association member or landowner association operator may enter into reciprocal agreements with other landowner association members or landowner association operators to allow hunters who have obtained a CWMU permit to hunt within each other's CWMUs as provided in Subsections R657-37-4(3) (a)(x).
(b) Reciprocal hunting agreements may be approved only to:
(i) raise funds to address joint habitat improvement projects;
(ii) address emergency situations limiting hunting opportunity on a CWMU; or
(iii) raise funds to aid in essential management practices for the benefit of CWMU species, including obtaining age or species population data as recommended by regional division personnel and approved by the division's wildlife section chief.
(c) If a person is authorized to hunt in one or more CWMUs as provided in Subsection (a), written permission from the landowner association member or landowner association operator and written authorization from the division must be in the person's possession while hunting.
(3)(a) A landowner association member or landowner association operator must provide general public CWMU permitteesa minimum of:
(i) five days to hunt with buck, bull or turkey permits; and
(ii) two days to hunt with antlerless permits.
(b) General public CWMU permitees shall be allowed to hunt the entire CWMU except areas that are excluded from hunting to all permittees.
(i) a landowner association may identify in the management plan areas within the CWMU boundary that are open to specific species only. These areas must be open to all permit holders for that species.
(c) A person who has obtained a CWMU permit may hunt only in the CWMU for which the permit is issued, except as provided under Subsection (2).
(4)(a) Each landowner association member or landowner association operator must:
(i) clearly post all boundaries of the CWMU at all corners, fishing streams crossing property lines, road, gates, and rights-of-way entering the land with signs that are a minimum of 8 . by 11 inches on a bright yellow background with black lettering, and that contain the language provided in Subsection (b); and
(ii) if a CWMU uses public land for the purpose of making a definable boundary for the CWMU then that boundary shall be posted every three hundred yards.
(b) A CWMU is created under an agreement between private landowners and the division, and approved by the Wildlife Board. Only persons with a valid CWMU permit for the CWMU may hunt moose, deer, elk, pronghorn or turkey within the boundaries of the CWMU. The general public may use accessible public land portions of the CWMU for all legal purposes, other than hunting big game or turkey for which the CWMU is authorized.
(5) A landowner association member or landowner association operator must provide a written copy of its guidelines used to regulate a permit holder's conduct as a guest on the CWMU to each permit holder.
(6)(a) A CWMU and the division shall cooperatively address the needs of landowners who are negatively impacted by big game animals or turkeys associated with the CWMU.
(b) The CWMU and the division shall cooperatively seek methods to prevent or mitigate agricultural depredation caused by big game animals or turkeys associated with the CWMU.
(1) A landowner association member may appoint CWMU agents to monitor access and protect the private property of the CWMU.
(2) Each CWMU agent must wear or have in possession a form of identification prescribed by the Wildlife Board which indicates the agent is a CWMU agent.
(3) A CWMU agent may refuse entry into the private land portions of a CWMU to any person, except owners of land within the unit and their employees, who:
(a) does not have in their possession a CWMU permit;
(b) endangers or has endangered human safety;
(c) damages or has damaged private property within a CWMU; or
(d) fails or has failed to comply with reasonable rules of a landowner association.
(4) A CWMU agent may not refuse entry to the general public onto any public land within the boundaries of a CWMU that is otherwise accessible to the public for purposes other than hunting big game or turkey for which the CWMU is authorized.
(5) In performing the functions described in this section, a CWMU agent must comply with the relevant laws of this state.
(1) The division shall issue CWMU permits for hunting big game or turkey to permittees:
(a) qualifying through a drawing conducted for the general public as defined in Subsection R657-37-2(2)(c); or
(b) named by the landowner association member or landowner association operator.
(2) A landowner association member or landowner association operator shall be issued vouchers that may be used to purchase hunting permits from division offices.
(3) The division and the landowner association member must, in accordance with Subsection (4), determine:
(a) the total number of permits to be issued for the CWMU; and
(b) the number of permits that may be offered by the landowner association member to the general public as defined in Subsection R657-37-2(2)(c).
(4)(a) Big game permits may be allocated using an option from:
(i) table one for moose and pronghorn; or
(ii) table two for elk and deer.
(b) During a three year management plan period, permit allocations for moose permits available in the public draw will not drop below 40% for bull moose and 60% for antlerless moose.
(c) At least one buck or bull permit or at least 10% of the bucks or bulls permits, whichever is greater, must be made available to the general public through the big game drawing process.
(d) Permits shall not be issued for spike bull elk.
(e) Turkey permits shall be allocated in a ratio of fifty percent to the CWMU and fifty percent to the general public, with the public receiving the extra permit when there is an odd number of total permits.
Cooperative Wildlife Management unit's share
(5)(a) The landowner association member or landowner association operator must meet antlerless harvest objectives established in the CWMU management plan under subsection R657-37-4(3)(a)(ii).
(b) Failure to meet antlerless harvest objectives based on a three year average may result in discipline under section R657-37-14.
(6) A landowner association member or landowner association operator must provide access free of charge to any person who has received a CWMU permit through the general public big game or turkey drawings, except as provided in Section 23-23-11.
(7) If the division and the landowner association member disagree on the number of permits to be issued, the number of permits allocated, or the method of take, the Wildlife Board shall make the determination based on the biological needs of the big game or turkey populations, including available forage, depredation, and other mitigating factors.
(8) A CWMU permit entitles the holder to hunt the species and sex of big game or turkey specified on the permit and only in accordance with the certificate of registration and the rules and proclamations of the Wildlife Board.
(9) Vouchers for antlerless permits may be designated by a landowner association member to any eligible person as provided in Rule R657-5 and the proclamation of the Wildlife Board for taking big game, and Rule R657-42.
(10) (a) If a landowner association has a CWMU voucher that is not redeemed during the previous year, a landowner association may donate that voucher to a 501(c)(3) tax exempt organization, provided the following conditions are satisfied:
(i) The voucher donation is approved by the Wildlife Board prior to transfer;
(ii) No more than one voucher is donated per year by a landowner association;
(iii) The voucher is donated for a charitable cause, and the landowner association does not receive compensation or consideration of any kind other than tax benefit; and
(iv) The recipient of the voucher is identified prior to obtaining the Wildlife Board's approval for the donation.
(b) A CWMU voucher approved for donation under this section may be extended no more than one year.
(c) The division must be notified in writing and the donation completed before April 1st the year the CWMU voucher is to be redeemed.
(11)(a) A complete list of the current CWMUs, and number of big game or turkey permits available for public drawing shall be published in the respective proclamations of the Wildlife Board for taking big game or turkey.
(b) The division reserves the exclusive right to list approved CWMUs in the proclamations of the Wildlife Board for taking big game or turkey. The division may unilaterally decline to list a CWMU in the proclamation where the unit is under investigation for wildlife violations, a portion of the property comprising the CWMU is transferred to a new owner, or any other condition or circumstance that calls into question the CWMUs ability or willingness to allow a meaningful hunting opportunity to all the public permit holders that would otherwise draw out on the public permits.
The fee for permits allocated to any CWMU is the same as the applicable:
(a) limited entry permit fee for elk and pronghorn;
(b) general season, limited entry or premium limited entry permit fee for deer or turkey; and
(c) once-in-a-lifetime permit fee for moose.
(1) A person may not hunt in a CWMU without having in his possession:
(a) a valid CWMU permit; and
(b) the necessary hunting licenses, permits and tags.
(2) A CWMU permit:
(a) entitles the holder to hunt only on the CWMU specified on the permit pursuant to the rules of the Wildlife Board and does not entitle the holder to hunt on any other public or private land, except as provided under Subsection R657-37-7(2)(a); and
(b) constitutes written permission for trespass as required under Section 23-20-14.
(3) Prior to hunting on a CWMU each permittee must:
(a) contact the relevant landowner association member or landowner association operator and request the CWMU rules and requirements; and
(b) make arrangements with the landowner association member or landowner association operator for the hunt.
(1) A landowner association member or landowner association operator may arrange for permittees to hunt on the CWMU during the following dates:
(a) an archery buck deer season may be established beginning with the opening of the general archery deer season through August 31 and during the sixty-one consecutive day buck deer season;
(b) an archery bull elk season may be established beginning with the opening of the general archery elk season through October 31 and during a bull elk season variance;
(c) general season bull elk, pronghorn, and moose seasons may be established September 1 through October 31, or the closing date of the general season for the respective species, whichever is later;
(d)(i) general buck deer seasons may be established for no longer than sixty-one consecutive days from September 1 through November 10;
(ii) a landowner association member or landowner association operator electing to establish buck deer hunting in November must:
(A) meet the CWMU management plan objectives;
(B) not exceed average hunter density exhibited on the surrounding deer wildlife management units;
(C) provide positive hunter satisfaction; and
(D) maintain a harvest success rate at least equal to the surrounding deer wildlife management units;
(E) designate the CWMU's sixty-one consecutive day season in the application, or if the sixty-one day consecutive season is not designated the season shall begin September 1;
(F) allow all public hunters the option to hunt in November;
(e) muzzleloader bull elk seasons may be established September 1 through the end of the general muzzleloader elk season and during a bull elk season variance;
(f) antlerless elk seasons may be established August 15 through January 31;
(g) antlerless deer seasons may be established August 15 through December 31; and
(h) turkey seasons may be established the second Saturday in April through May 31.
(2) The Wildlife Board may authorize bull elk hunting season variances only if the CWMU landowner association member or landowner association operator clearly demonstrates that November hunting is necessary on the CWMU.
(3) Notwithstanding the season length provisions in this section, any season described in Subsection (1) that begins on a Sunday will default to and commence the Saturday before.
A landowner association member may not restrict established public access to public land enclosed by the CWMU.
(1) The Wildlife Board may refuse to issue a certificate of registration to an applicant, and may refuse to renew or may revoke, restrict, place on probation, change permits or allocations or otherwise act upon a certificate of registration where the landowner association member or landowner association operator has:
(a) violated any provision of this rule, the Wildlife Resources Code, the certificate of registration, or the CWMU application/agreement; or
(b) engaged in conduct that results in the conviction of, a plea of no contest to, or a plea held in abeyance to a crime of moral turpitude, or any other crime that when considered with the functions and responsibilities of a CWMU operator bears a reasonable relationship to the operator's or applicant's ability to safely and responsibly operate a CWMU.
(2) The procedures and rules governing any adverse action taken by the division or the Wildlife Board against a certificate of registration or an application for certificate of registration are set forth in Rule R657-2.
(1) A CWMU Advisory Committee shall be created consisting of seven members nominated by the director and approved by the Wildlife Board.
(2) The committee shall include:
(a) two sportsmen representatives;
(b) two CWMU representatives;
(c) one agricultural representative;
(d) one at-large public representative;
(e) one elected official; and
(f) one Regional Advisory Committee chairperson or Regional Advisory Committee member .
(3) The committee shall be chaired by the Wildlife Section Chief, who shall be a non-voting member.
(4) The committee shall:
(a) hear complaints dealing with fair and equitable treatment of hunters on CWMUs;
(b) review the operation of the CWMU program;
(c) review failure to meet antlerless objectives
(d) hear complaints from adjacent landowners; and
(e) make advisory recommendations to the director and Wildlife Board on the matters in Subsections (a) (b) (c) and (d).
(5) The Wildlife Section Chief shall determine the agenda, and time and location of the meetings.
(6) The director shall set staggered terms of appointment of members in order to assure that all committee members' terms shall expire after four years, and at least three members shall expire after the initial two years.