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R657-38 – Dedicated Hunter Program

KEY: wildlife, hunting, recreation, wildlife conservation

Date of Enactment or Last Substantive Amendment: February 10, 2014

Notice of Continuation: November 1, 2010

Authorizing, and Implemented or Interpreted law: 23-14-18

R657-38-1. Purpose and Authority.

(1) Under the authority of Section 23-14-18, this rule provides the standards and requirements for qualified deer hunters to participate in the Dedicated Hunter Program by obtaining a certificate of registration.

(2) The Dedicated Hunter Program is a program that provides:

(a) expanded hunting opportunities

(b) opportunities to participate in projects that are beneficial to wildlife; and

(c) education in hunter ethics and wildlife management principles.

R657-38-2. Definitions.

(1) Terms used in this rule are defined in Section 23-13-2.

(2) In addition:

(a) "Dedicated Hunter Permit" means a general buck deer permit issued to a participant in the Dedicated Hunter Program, which authorizes the participant to hunt deer during the general archery, general muzzleloader and general any weapon open seasons in the hunt area specified on the permit.

(b) "Hunt area" means an area prescribed by the Wildlife Board where general archery, general muzzleloader and general any weapon deer hunting is open to permit holders for taking deer.

(c) "Participant" means a person who has remitted the appropriate fee and has been issued a Dedicated Hunter certificate of registration.

(d) "Program" means the Dedicated Hunter Program

(e) "Program harvest" means using a Dedicated Hunter permit to tag a harvested deer or failing to return a Dedicated Hunter permit with attached kill tag, while enrolled in the program.

(f) "Wildlife conservation project" means any project that provides wildlife habitat protection or enhancement, improves hunting or fishing access, or directly benefits wildlife or the Division's current needs and is pre-authorized by the Division.

R657-38-3. Dedicated Hunter Certificates of Registration

(1)(a) To become a participant in the program a person must apply for, obtain, and sign a Dedicated Hunter certificate of registration. A participant is not required to have the Dedicated Hunter certificate of registration on their person while hunting.

(b) Certificates of registration are issued by the Division through a drawing as prescribed in the guidebook of the Wildlife Board for taking big game and R657-62.

(c) Certificates of registration are valid for 3 consecutive years, except as provided by R657-38-(10), beginning on the date the big game drawing results are released and ending on the last day of the general season hunt for the 3rd year of enrollment.

(d) The number of Dedicated Hunter certificates of registration is limited to 15% of the total annual general season quota for each perspective hunt area.

(i) Certificates of registration remaining unissued from the Dedicated Hunter portion of the big game drawing shall be redistributed as general single-season permits for their respective hunt areas in the general buck deer drawing.

(2) The Division may deny, suspend, or revoke a Dedicated Hunter certificate of registration for any of the following reasons:

(a) The drawing application contains false information;

(b) The person, at the time of application, or during the program enrollment, is under a judicial or administrative order suspending any wildlife hunting or fishing privilege within Utah or elsewhere;

(c) The person has violated the terms of any certificate of registration issued by the Division or an associated agreement.

(3) A person under any wildlife suspension may not apply for a certificate of registration until their suspension period has ended.

(4) A certificate of registration authorizes the participant to use a Dedicated Hunter permit to hunt deer within the area listed on the permit, during the general archery, general muzzleloader and general any legal weapon buck deer hunts according to the dates and boundaries established by the Wildlife Board. When available, the certificate of registration may also authorize hunting within the general archery extended area during the extended season dates.

(5) The participant's hunt area, issued through the drawing, shall remain the same for the duration of that program enrollment period.

(6) Participants of the program shall be subject to any changes subsequently made in this rule during the term of enrollment, unless a variance is authorized by the Division.

R657-38-4. Applications for Certificates of Registration.

(1) Application to obtain a Dedicated Hunter certificate of registration is pursuant to R657-62-16

(a) Applicants must meet all age requirements and proof of hunter education and license requirements pursuant to Sections 23-19-11, 23-19-22, 23-19-24, and 23-19-26.

(i ) Any person who is 12 years of age or older may apply for a Dedicated Hunter certificate of registration.

(ii ) A person 11 years of age may apply for or obtain a Dedicated Hunter certificate of registration if that person's 12th birthday falls in the calendar year the certificate is issued. A person may not hunt big game prior to their 12th birthday.

R657-38-5. Dedicated Hunter Preference Point System.

Dedicated Hunter Preference points are issued pursuant to R657-62-10.

R657-38-6. Fees.

(1) Any person who is 17 years of age or younger on July 31st of the application year shall pay the youth participant fees.

(2) Any person who is 18 years of age or older on July 31st of the application year shall pay the adult participant fees.

(3) Lifetime License holders shall pay a reduced fee as authorized by the annual fee schedule.

(4) A participant who enters the program as a Utah resident and becomes a nonresident, shall be changed to a nonresident status and may be issued a nonresident permit at no additional charge for the remainder of the three-year enrollment period.

(5) A participant who enters the program as a nonresident and becomes a Utah resident, shall be changed to a resident status and may be issued a resident permit with no reimbursement of the higher nonresident fee for the remainder of the three-year enrollment period.

R657-38-7. Refunds.

(1) A refund for the Dedicated Hunter certificate of registration may not be issued, except as provided in Section 23-19-38.2 and R657-42.

(2) Any eligible refund will be issued pro rata, based on the number of years in which any portion of a hunt was participated in during the enrollment period.

(3) Drawing application fees are nonrefundable.

R657-38-8. Wildlife Conservation and Ethics Course Requirement

(1) Prior to obtaining the first Dedicated Hunter permit of the program, a participant must complete the wildlife conservation and ethics course.

(2) The wildlife conservation and ethics course is available through the Division's Internet site.

(3) The Division shall keep a record of all participants who complete the wildlife conservation and ethics course.

R657-38-9. Service Hour Requirement

(1a) Except as provided in R657-38-14, each participant in the program shall provide a minimum of 32 hours of service as a volunteer on Division approved wildlife conservation projects.

(i) A participant may obtain a permit in the 1st year of the program without having provided service hours.

(ii) A participant must have completed a minimum of 16 service hours prior to receiving a Dedicated Hunter permit in the 2nd year of the program.

(iii) A participant must have completed a minimum of 16 additional service hours prior to receiving a Dedicated Hunter permit in the 3rd year of the program.

(b) If the participant fails to have the minimum of 32 hours completed at the expiration of the 3rd year, the participant will be ineligible to apply for or obtain any permits until the remaining hours have been paid for or completed.

(i) After a certificate of registration has expired, incomplete service hours may be completed through Division approved wildlife conservation projects or by payment at the hour buyout rate.

(c) Residents may not purchase more than 24 of the 32 total required service hours. Nonresidents may purchase all of the 32 total required service hours.

(d) If a participant fails to fulfill the wildlife conservation project requirements in any year of participation, the participant shall not be issued a Dedicated Hunter permit for that year.

(2) Wildlife conservation projects may be designed by the Division, or any other individual or entity, but must be pre-approved by the Division.

(a) Goods or services provided to the Division for wildlife conservation projects by a participant may be, at the discretion of the Division, substituted for service hours based upon current market values for the goods or services, and using the approved hourly service buyout rate when applying the credit.

(i) Goods or material donations that are specifically requested and accepted by the Division may be considered as service project hours.

(b) The Division shall publicize the dates, times, locations and description of approved wildlife conservation projects and activities on the Division's Internet site.

(3) Service hours must be completed within the enrollment period.

(a) Service hours exceeding the 32 hour minimum shall not be applicable beyond the enrollment period and shall not be applied to subsequent certificate of registrations.

(4) Participants are required to perform their own service hours.

(a) Service hours are not transferrable to other participants or certificates of registration.

R657-38-10. Service Hour Exceptions and Program Extension.

(1) The program service hour requirements may be waived on an annual basis if;

(a) The participant provides evidence of leaving the state for a minimum period of one year during the enrollment period for religious or educational purposes.

(i) If the participant requests that the program service hour requirements be waived, and the request is granted, the participant shall not receive a Dedicated Hunter permit for the year in which the program requirements were waived

(b) The participant is a member of the United States Armed Forces or public health or public safety organization and is mobilized or deployed on order in the interest of national defense or emergency

(2) A person who is a member of the United States Armed Forces or public safety organization that is mobilized or deployed may request;

(a) That the remainder of their program enrollment period be postponed until return from their period of mobilization or deployment;

(b) That the program requirements be postponed into a subsequent year of the enrollment

(c) That the program service hour requirements be waived if the participant is prevented from completing the requirements due to the mobilization or deployment.

(A) The participant must provide evidence of the mobilization or deployment period.

(B) The Division shall determine a pro rata schedule in which the service hour requirements waived correlate with the term length of the deployment or mobilization.

R657-38-11. Allowable Harvest and Permit Return Requirements.

(1)(a) Except as provided in section R657-38-12, a program participant may take up to 2 deer within the enrollment period and only 1 deer may be harvested in a single year.

(b) The harvest of an antlerless deer using a Dedicated Hunter permit, when permissible in the extended archery areas and seasons established in the big game guidebook, shall be considered a program harvest.

(2) Upon issue of a Dedicated Hunter permit, the participant is credited with a program harvest.

(a) 2 program harvests are allowed within the enrollment

(b) If program harvests are accrued during the 1st year and 2nd year of the enrollment, a permit shall not be issued for the 3rd year.

(c) In order to remove a program harvest credit, the participant;

(i) must not have harvested a deer with the Dedicated Hunter permit, and (ii) must return the permit and attached tag, or a qualifying affidavit for duplication as proof of non-harvest to a Division office. A handling fee may be assessed for processing an affidavit.

R657-38-12. Dedicated Hunter Permits.

(1) Pursuant to Sections 23-19-24 and 23-19-26 person must have a valid Utah hunting or combination license to be issued a big game permit.

(2) The participant must have a valid Dedicated Hunter permit in possession while hunting.

(3) Upon completion of the minimum annual requirements, a Dedicated Hunter permit may be issued. The method and dates in which the Division issues and distributes Dedicated Hunter permits shall be published on the Division's website or in the guidebook of the Wildlife Board for taking big game.

(4) The Division may exclude multiple season opportunities on specific management units due to extenuating circumstances on a portion or all of a hunt area.

(5)(a) The Division may issue a duplicate Dedicated Hunter permit pursuant to Section 23-19-10.

(b) If a participant's unused Dedicated Hunter permit and tag is destroyed, lost, or stolen prior to, or during the hunting season in which the permit is valid, a participant may obtain a duplicate. A handling fee may be assessed for the duplication.

(c) A duplicate Dedicated Hunter permit shall not be issued after the closing date of the general buck deer season.

(6)(a) A participant may surrender a Dedicated Hunter permit in accordance with Rule R657-42.

(b) A participant may not surrender a Dedicated Hunter permit once the general archery deer hunt has begun, unless the Division can verify that the permit was never in the participant's possession.

(7)(a) Lifetime license holders may participate in the program.

(b) The Lifetime license holder shall apply for a certificate of registration in the same manner as all other prospective participants.

(c) Upon joining and for the duration of enrollment in the program, the lifetime license holder agrees to temporarily forego any rights to receive a lifetime license buck deer permit as provided in Section 23-19-17.5.

(c) A refund or credit is not issued for a forgone lifetime license permit.

R657-38-13. Obtaining Other Permits.

(1)Participants may not apply for or obtain any general season buck deer permit, including general landowner buck deer permits, or respective preference points issued by the Division through the big game drawing, license agents, over-the-counter sales, or the internet during an enrollment period in the program.

(a)Any general season deer permit obtained is invalid and must be surrendered prior to the beginning date of that permit. A refund may not be issued pursuant to Section 23-19-3.

(2)(a) Participants may apply for or obtain a limited entry season buck deer permit, including CWMU, limited entry landowner, conservation, convention, and poaching rewards permits

(i) The limited entry buck deer permit may be obtained without the completion of the annual program requirements, but does not exempt the participant from fulfilling the minimum requirements of the entire enrollment.

(ii) Obtaining a limited entry buck deer permit during the enrollment shall not extend the enrollment period, but shall take the place of one of the 3 possible permit years.

(iii)Harvest with a limited entry buck deer permit shall not be counted as a program harvest.

(b) If the participant obtains a limited entry buck deer permit and has been issued a Dedicated Hunter permit, that permit or the Dedicated Hunter permit must be surrendered as permissible by R657-38-11and R657-42. A refund may not be issued pursuant to Section 23-19-38.

(i) A participant who obtains a limited entry buck deer permit may only use that permit in the prescribed area and season listed on the permit. Dedicated Hunter privileges are not transferred to that permit.

(ii) The limited entry buck deer permit may not be obtained if the Dedicated Hunter permit has been in possession of the participant during any open portion of the general buck deer season.

(3)(a) Participants may apply for or obtain antlerless deer permits as provided in Rule R657-5 and the guidebook of the Wildlife Board for taking big game.

(b) Except as provided in R657-38-10, harvest of an antlerless deer with an antlerless deer permit shall not be considered a program harvest.

R657-38-14. Certificate of Registration Surrender.

(1) A participant may surrender a Dedicated Hunter certificate of registration pursuant to R657-42-4 provided the participant has not been issued 2 Dedicated Hunter permits in which hunting may have occurred.

(a) if a participant has been issued the 1st permit, the participant must have completed a minimum of 10 service hours prior to an allowable surrender.

(i) if the participant surrendering is physically unable to complete the minimum of 10 service hours due to injury or illness, the Division may authorize another person to fulfill the requirement in the participant's behalf.

(b) a participant may not surrender a certificate of registration if the participant has met the program harvest limit.

(2) The Division may not issue a refund, except as provided in Section 23-19-38 and R657-42 and R657-38-7.

(3) If a Dedicated Hunter permit has been issued in which hunting may have occurred, the participant shall not be eligible for preference points to be reinstated upon surrender of the certificate of registration.

R657-38-15. Certificate of Registration Suspension.

(1) The Division may suspend a Dedicated Hunter certificate of registration pursuant to Section 23-19-9 and R657-26.

(2) A certificate of registration may also be suspended if the participant:

(a) fraudulently submits a time sheet for service hours; or

(b) fraudulently completes any of the program requirements.

(c) is under suspension of any hunting or fishing privileges in any jurisdiction during the participant's enrollment in the program.

(3) A Dedicated Hunter permit is invalid if a participant's certificate of registration is suspended.

(4) The program enrollment period shall not be extended in correlation with any suspension.

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