Sec. 23-65h. Forest practitioner certification. Classifications and requirements. Regulations. (a) On or after July 1, 1992, no person shall advertise, solicit,
contract or engage in commercial forest practices within this state at any time without
a certificate issued in accordance with the provisions of this section, appropriate to the
forest practices advertised, solicited, contracted or engaged in except as provided in
subsections (b) and (c) of this section.
(b) There shall be three classifications for commercial forest practitioners: Forester, supervising forest products harvester and forest products harvester. Forester certification shall be required for commercial forest practitioners who supervise or engage in the planning and design of forest practices, including but not limited to, commercial forest product harvest operations, or act as a property owner's agent in the sale of commercial forest products. A certified forester may also execute contracts or agreements, written or verbal, for the purchase of commercial forest products, act in the buyers behalf in the supervision of commercial forest product harvest operations and engage in the execution of commercial forest product harvest operations. Supervising forest products harvester certification shall be required for commercial forest practitioners who execute contracts or agreements, written or verbal, for the purchase of commercial forest products or who act in the buyer's behalf in the supervision of commercial forest product harvest operations. A certified supervising forest products harvester may also engage in the execution of commercial forest product harvest operations. Forest products harvester certification shall be required for commercial forest practitioners who engage in the execution of commercial forest product harvest operations, provided no such certification shall be required for persons engaging in the execution of commercial forest practices under the direct, on-site supervision of a certified forest product harvester. No forest product harvester certified under this section shall engage in the on-site supervision of more than two noncertified persons executing commercial forest practices.
(c) An application for the certification as a forest practitioner shall be made to the Commissioner of Environmental Protection and shall contain such information regarding the applicant's qualifications and proposed operations and other relevant matters as the commissioner deems necessary.
(1) The commissioner shall require the applicant for forester certification to demonstrate, upon examination, that he possesses adequate knowledge concerning the proper application of forest management techniques, the ecological and environmental consequences of harvesting activity and mitigating measures to be employed to minimize possible adverse impacts on environmental conditions within the harvest area.
(2) The commissioner shall require the applicant for supervising forest products harvester certification to demonstrate, upon examination, that he possesses adequate knowledge concerning techniques and procedures normally employed in the conduct and supervision of a harvest operation, the safe and environmentally responsible operation of harvesting equipment, and mitigating measures to be employed to minimize possible adverse impacts of harvesting activity on environmental conditions within the harvest area.
(3) The commissioner shall require the applicant for forest products harvester certification to demonstrate, upon examination, that he possesses adequate knowledge concerning techniques and procedures normally employed in the conduct of a harvest operation and the safe and environmentally responsible operation of harvesting equipment, except that an applicant who demonstrates to the satisfaction of the commissioner that he has engaged in commercial forest practices at least once per year for the ten years immediately preceding October 1, 1991, shall be exempt from such examination requirement.
(4) If the commissioner finds that the applicant is competent with respect to the required qualifications, including those provided in section 23-65o, he shall certify the applicant to perform such forest practices as appropriate to the requested certification. The certification shall be valid for a period not to exceed five years and may be renewed by the commissioner with or without further examination. The commissioner may establish regulations for forest practitioner certification so that one-fifth of the certificates expire each year. The commissioner may certify a forest practitioner for less than five years and prorate the registration fee accordingly to implement the regulations established pursuant to this subsection.
(5) If the commissioner finds that the applicant is not competent with respect to the requirements for the requested certification, the commissioner shall refuse to issue the applicant a certificate. The commissioner shall inform the applicant of the refusal in writing, giving the reasons for such refusal. Any person aggrieved by such refusal may, within thirty days from date of issuance of such denial, request a hearing before the commissioner, which hearing shall be conducted in accordance with chapter 54.
(6) The commissioner may certify without examination any person who is certified in another state under a law which provides substantially similar qualifications for certification and which grants similar privileges of certification without examination to residents of this state certified under the provisions of this section.
(7) The commissioner may, by regulation, adopted in accordance with the provisions of chapter 54, prescribe fees for applicants to defray the cost of administering examinations and carrying out the provisions of this chapter. A state or municipal employee who engages in activities for which certification is required by this section solely as part of his employment shall be exempt from payment of a fee. Any certificate issued to a state or municipal employee for which a fee has not been paid shall be void upon termination of such government employment.
(8) The commissioner may require the display of a decal or other evidence, indicating that a commercial forest practitioner has met the requirements of sections 23-65f to 23-65o, inclusive, in a prominent place on any licensed motor vehicle used in the practitioner's operations. A fee may be charged to the certified practitioner to cover the cost of the decal or other evidence.
(9) The commissioner shall require all forest practitioners certified under sections 23-65f to 23-65o, inclusive, to participate biennially in a relevant program of professional education to improve or maintain professional forestry skills that is sponsored by the Department of Environmental Protection, the New England Society of American Foresters, The University of Connecticut, Yale University or the Connecticut cooperative extension system, or participation in another program approved by the department.
(P.A. 86-257, S. 3, 6; P.A. 91-335, S. 3; June Sp. Sess. P.A. 09-3, S. 470.)
History: P.A. 86-257, S. 3 effective August 26, 1988, upon the adoption of regulations pursuant to Sec. 23-65g; P.A. 91-335 entirely replaced provisions re logger registration board with provisions concerning forest practitioner certification; June Sp. Sess. P.A. 09-3 amended Subsec. (c)(7) to delete provision requiring fees to be deposited in the Environmental Conservation Fund.
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Sec. 23-65j. Forest practices. Regulations. Fees. (a) The Commissioner of Environmental Protection may adopt regulations, in accordance with the provisions of chapter 54, governing the conduct of forest practices including, but not limited to, the harvest
of commercial forest products and other such matters as the commissioner deems necessary to carry out the provisions of sections 23-65f to 23-65o, inclusive. Notice of intent
to adopt such regulations shall be sent by certified mail, return receipt requested, to the
chief elected official of each municipality concurrent with publication in the Connecticut
Law Journal. Such regulations shall provide for a comprehensive state-wide system of
laws and forest practices regulations which will achieve the following purposes and
policies: (1) Afford protection to and improvement of air and water quality; (2) afford
protection to forests from fire, insects, disease and other damaging agents; (3) afford
protection to and promote the recovery of threatened and endangered species regulated
pursuant to chapter 495; (4) encourage the harvesting of forest products in ways which
result in no net loss of site productivity and which respect aesthetic values; (5) assure
that forest practices are conducted in a safe manner; (6) provide a continuing supply of
forest products from a healthy, vigorous forest resource; (7) promote the sound, professionally guided, long-term management of forested lands and forest resources, considering both the goals of ownership held by the forest owner and the public interest; (8)
encourage the retention of healthy forest vegetation whenever possible as forested lands
are converted to nonforest uses or developed for recreational, residential or industrial
purposes; (9) provide the Commissioner of Environmental Protection with essential
data on pressures and influences on forest resources, state-wide and on the rate of loss
of forested lands. Prior to adopting such regulations, the commissioner shall prepare
a report assessing the costs to the regulated entities, the benefits to the state and the
environmental impacts of adopting such regulations. Such regulations may include, but
not be limited to: (A) Minimum standards for forest practices; (B) establishment of a
process by which harvests of commercial forest products from lands other than state-owned lands managed by the department shall be authorized; and (C) necessary administrative provisions.
(b) The commissioner may by regulation prescribe fees for the authorization of harvests of commercial forest products from lands other than state-owned lands managed by the department. The fees collected in accordance with this section shall be deposited directly in the General Fund.
(P.A. 86-257, S. 5, 6; P.A. 91-335, S. 5; P.A. 99-225, S. 25, 33; June Sp. Sess. P.A. 09-3, S. 438.)
History: P.A. 86-257, S. 5 effective July 1, 1987; P.A. 91-335 entirely replaced section with provisions concerning forest practices and related regulations; P.A. 99-225 amended Subsec. (a) to provide for a report re costs and benefits of adopting regulations under this section, effective June 29, 1999; June Sp. Sess. P.A. 09-3 amended Subsec. (b) to substitute General Fund for Environmental Conservation Fund.
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