FISH AND GAME
FISH AND GAME COMMISSION
Conservation Officers, Superintendents of Hatcheries,
and Other Employees
206:26-bb Search and Rescue Response Expenses; Recovery.
I. Any person determined by the department to have acted negligently in requiring a search and rescue response by the department shall be liable to the department for the reasonable cost of the department's expenses for such search and rescue response, unless the person shows proof of possessing a current version of any of the following:
(a) A hunting or fishing license issued by this state under title XVIII.
(b) An OHRV registration under RSA 215-A, a snowmobile registration under RSA 215-C, or a vessel registration under RSA 270-E.
(c) A voluntary hike safe card. The executive director shall adopt rules under RSA 541-A for the issuance to purchasers on the department's Internet site, and subsequent annual renewals, of a hike safe card prior to a person's need for a search and rescue response. The executive director shall establish the fee for an individual hike safe card and a family hike safe card in rules adopted pursuant to RSA 541-A. A "family" shall consist of the purchaser, the purchaser's spouse, and the purchaser's minor children or stepchildren. In addition, if the purchaser or the purchaser's spouse has been appointed as a family guardian for an individual under RSA 464-A, that individual shall be considered part of the purchaser's family. A transaction fee determined by the department shall be for the Internet license agent as provided in RSA 214-A:2. The executive director shall forward to the state treasurer the sum collected from each individual hike safe card purchased and each family hike safe card purchased, less the amount of such transaction fee, for deposit in the fish and game search and rescue fund under RSA 206:42.
I-a. The executive director shall bill the responsible person for such costs. Payment shall be made to the department within 30 days after the receipt of the bill, or by some other date determined by the executive director. If any person shall fail or refuse to pay the costs by the required date, the department may pursue payment by legal action, or by settlement or compromise, and the responsible person shall be liable for interest from the date that the bill is due and for legal fees and costs incurred by the department in obtaining and enforcing judgment under this paragraph. All amounts recovered, less the costs of collection and any percentage due pursuant to RSA 7:15-a, IV(b), shall be paid into the fish and game search and rescue fund established in RSA 206:42.
II. If any person fails to make payment under paragraph I, the executive director of the fish and game department may:
(a) Order any license, permit, or tag issued by the fish and game department to be suspended or revoked, after due hearing.
(b) Notify the commissioner of the department of health and human services of such nonpayment. The nonpayment shall constitute cause for revocation of any license or certification issued by the commissioner pursuant to RSA 126-A:20 and RSA 151:7.
(c) Notify the director of motor vehicles of such nonpayment and request suspension of the person's driver's license pursuant to RSA 263:56.
III. Regardless of a person's possession of a document satisfying subparagraph I(a), (b), or (c), a person shall be liable to the department for search and rescue response expenses if the person is judged to have done any of the actions listed in RSA 153-A:24, I.
Source. 2008, 167:2, eff. June 6, 2008. 2014, 230:1, eff. Jan. 1, 2015. 2016, 165:1, eff. June 3, 2016; 166:1, 2, eff. June 3, 2016. 2022, 38:1, eff. July 2, 2022.