Grounds for department revocation and suspension of recreational license — Appeal.
(1) The department shall revoke a person's recreational license or licenses and suspend a person's recreational license privileges in the following circumstances:
(a) Upon conviction, if directed by statute for an offense.
(b) Upon conviction, failure to appear at a hearing to contest an infraction or criminal charge, or an unvacated payment of a fine or a finding of committed as a final disposition for any infraction, if the department finds that actions of the defendant demonstrated a willful or wanton disregard for conservation of fish or wildlife. Suspension of privileges under this subsection may be permanent.
(c) If a person is convicted, fails to appear at a hearing to contest an infraction or criminal citation, or has an unvacated payment of a fine or a finding of committed as a final disposition for any infraction, twice within ten years for a violation involving unlawful hunting, killing, or possessing big game. Revocation and suspension under this subsection must be ordered for all hunting privileges for two years.
(d) If a person violates, three times or more in a ten-year period, recreational hunting or fishing laws or rules for which the person: (i) Is convicted of an offense; (ii) has an unvacated payment of a fine or a finding of committed as a final disposition for any infraction; or (iii) fails to appear at a hearing to contest an infraction or a criminal citation. Revocation and suspension under this subsection must be ordered of all recreational hunting and fishing privileges for two years.
(2)(a) A violation punishable as an infraction counts towards the revocation and suspension of recreational hunting and fishing privileges under this section if that violation is:
(i) Punishable as a crime on July 24, 2005, and is subsequently decriminalized; or
(ii) One of the following violations, as they exist on July 24, 2005: RCW 77.15.160; WAC 220-56-116; WAC 220-56-315(11); or WAC 220-56-355 (1) through (4).
(b) The commission may, by rule, designate infractions that do not count towards the revocation and suspension of recreational hunting and fishing privileges.
(3) If either the deferred education licensee or the required nondeferred accompanying person, hunting under the authority of RCW 77.32.155(2), is convicted of a violation of this title, fails to appear at a hearing to contest a fish and wildlife infraction or a criminal citation, or has an unvacated payment of a fine or a finding of committed as a final disposition for any fish and wildlife infraction, except for a violation of RCW 77.15.400 (1) through (4), the department may revoke all hunting licenses and tags and may order a suspension of either or both the deferred education licensee's and the nondeferred accompanying person's hunting privileges for one year.
(4) A person who has a recreational license revoked and privileges suspended under this section may file an appeal with the department pursuant to chapter 34.05 RCW. An appeal must be filed within twenty days of notice of license revocation and privilege suspension. If an appeal is filed, the revocation and suspension issued by the department do not take effect until twenty-one days after the department has delivered an opinion. If no appeal is filed within twenty days of notice of license revocation and suspension, the right to an appeal is waived, and the revocation and suspension take effect twenty-one days following the notice of revocation and suspension.
(5) A recreational license revoked and privilege suspended under this section is in addition to the statutory penalties assigned to the underlying violation.
[2012 c 176 § 35; 2009 c 333 § 2; 2007 c 163 § 2; 2005 c 321 § 1; 2003 c 386 § 2; 2001 c 253 § 46; 1998 c 190 § 66.]
| Findings -- Intent -- 2003 c 386: "(1)(a) The legislature finds that existing law as it relates to the suspension of commercial fishing licenses does not take into account the real-life circumstances faced by the state's commercial fishing fleets. The nature of the commercial fishing industry, together with the complexity of fisheries regulations, is such that honest mistakes can be made by well-meaning and otherwise law-abiding fishers. Commercial fishing violations that occur within an acceptable margin of error should not result in the suspension of fishing privileges. Likewise, fishers facing the possibility of license suspension or revocation deserve the opportunity to explain any extenuating circumstances prior to having his or her professional privileges suspended.|
(b) The legislature intends, by creating the license suspension review committee, to provide a fisher with the opportunity to explain any extenuating circumstances that led to a commercial fishing violation. The legislature intends for the license suspension review committee to give serious considerations to the case-specific facts and scenarios leading up to a violation, and for license suspensions to issue only when the facts indicate a willful act that undermines the conservation of fish stocks. Frivolous violations should not result in the suspension of privileges, and should be punished only by the criminal sanctions attached to the underlying crime.
(2)(a) The legislature further finds that gross abuses of fish stocks should not be tolerated. Individuals convicted of even one violation that is egregious in nature, causing serious detriment to a fishery or the competitive disposition of other fishers, should have his or her license suspended and revoked.
(b) The legislature intends for the license suspension review committee to take egregious fisheries' violations seriously. When dealing with individuals convicted of only one violation, the license suspension review committee should only consider suspension for individuals that are convicted of violations that are of a severe magnitude and show a wanton disregard for the public's resource." [2003 c 386 § 1.]