Connecticut Seal

General Assembly


Substitute Bill No. 5578

    February Session, 2016




Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Assembly convened:

Section 1. (NEW) (Effective July 1, 2017) (a) For the purposes of this section:

(1) "Bona fide educational or scientific institution" means an institution that establishes through documentation either of the following: (A) An educational or scientific tax exemption, from the federal Internal Revenue Service or such institution's national or state tax authority; or (B) accreditation as an educational or scientific institution, from a qualified national or state authority for the institution's location;

(2) "Ivory" means a tooth or tusk from a species of elephant, hippopotamus, mammoth, walrus, whale, or narwhal, or a piece thereof, including any product that contains or that is advertised as containing ivory;

(3) "Rhinoceros horn" means the horn or a piece or derivative thereof, such as powder, of a species of rhinoceros, including any product containing or advertised as containing rhinoceros horn;

(4) "Sale" or "sell" means selling, trading, bartering for monetary or nonmonetary consideration, or giving away in conjunction with a commercial transaction; and

(5) "Total value" means either the fair market value or the actual price paid for ivory or rhinoceros horn, whichever is greater.

(b) Except as provided in subsections (c) and (d) of this section, no person shall purchase, sell, offer for sale or possess with the intent to sell any ivory or rhinoceros horn.

(c) The prohibitions in subsection (b) of this section shall not apply to any of the following:

(1) Any employee or agent of the federal or state government undertaking a law enforcement activity pursuant to federal or state law or a mandatory duty required by federal law;

(2) Any activity expressly authorized by federal law;

(3) Ivory that is part of an antique provided:

(A) Such ivory was removed from the wild prior to February 26, 1976, if such ivory is elephant ivory;

(B) Such ivory is a fixed component of a larger manufactured item and is not, in its current form, the primary source of the total value for such item;

(C) The total volume of the ivory component is less than twenty per cent;

(D) The manufactured item is not made wholly or primarily of ivory;

(E) The ivory is not raw, unaltered or minimally changed by carving; and

(F) The owner or seller provides historical documentation or a sworn affidavit executed by an expert demonstrating provenance that verifies that the antique is not less than one hundred years old;

(4) The noncommercial transfer of ownership of ivory or rhinoceros horn to a legal beneficiary of an estate, trust or other inheritance; or

(5) The purchase, sale, offer for sale, or possession with intent to sell of an ivory or rhinoceros horn article by a bona fide educational or scientific institution or a museum.

(d) The prohibitions in subsection (b) of this section shall not apply to ivory that is part of a musical instrument that was made prior to February 26, 1976.

(e) It shall be presumptive evidence of possession with intent to sell ivory or rhinoceros horn if the ivory or rhinoceros horn is possessed in a retail or wholesale outlet commonly used for the buying or selling of similar items. Such presumption shall not preclude a finding of intent to sell based on any other evidence that may serve to independently establish such intent.

(f) Any person who violates any provision of this section or any rule, regulation, or order adopted pursuant to this section shall be guilty of a ·class B misdemeanor provided: (1) For the first offense, such person shall be fined not less than three thousand dollars or an amount equal to two times the total value of the article involved, whichever is greater, or imprisoned for not more than six months, or both; and (2) for a second or any subsequent violation, such person shall be fined not less than six thousand dollars or an amount equal to three times the total value of the article involved, whichever is greater, or imprisoned not more than one year, or both.

(g) Upon conviction or other entry of judgment for a violation of this section, any seized ivory or rhinoceros horn shall be forfeited and, upon forfeiture, either be maintained by the Department of Energy and Environmental Protection for educational or training purposes, donated by the department to a bona fide educational or scientific institution or destroyed.

(h) The Commissioner of Energy and Environmental Protection, in consultation with the Attorney General, may adopt regulations, in accordance with chapter 54 of the general statutes, to implement the provisions of this section.

This act shall take effect as follows and shall amend the following sections:

Section 1

July 1, 2017

New section


Joint Favorable Subst.