08.02.25.06

.06 Commercial — Finfish Trotlines.

A. An individual may not set or fish a finfish trotline within 100 feet of another individual’s set trotline.

B. The length of a finfish trotline is measured along the baited portion of the line.

C. A finfish trotline:

(1) May not exceed 1,200 feet in length;

(2) May not be baited with live bait; and

(3) Shall only be rigged with circle hooks with a minimum size of 5/0.

D. Float Requirements.

(1) A finfish trotline shall have a float of the same color, size, and shape attached to each end.

(2) Floats that have a round or spherical shape shall be at least 12 inches in diameter.

(3) Floats that do not have a round or spherical shape shall be at least 12 inches long and 10 inches wide.

(4) Floats shall be marked with the owner’s commercial license number.

E. Depth Requirements.

(1) During the period from June 16 through the end of February, a finfish trotline shall be set:

(a) At least 10 feet below the surface of the water, in waters that are at least 10 feet deep at mean low tide; or

(b) On the bottom of the water body in which they are set, in waters that are less than 10 feet deep at mean low tide.

(2) During the period from March 1 through June 15, finfish trotlines shall be set on the bottom of the water body in which they are set.

F. Area Restrictions. A finfish trotline:

(1) Shall only be set in the Chesapeake Bay and its tidal tributaries; and

(2) May not be set in the Chesapeake Bay south of the William Preston Lane, Jr. Memorial Bay Bridge, including Pocomoke Sound and Tangier Sound.

G. An individual shall be appropriately licensed to catch finfish under Natural Resources Article, §4-701 or 4-701.2, Annotated Code of Maryland, and permitted in accordance with this regulation in order to use a finfish trotline.

H. Finfish Trotline Permit.

(1) A finfish trotline permit may only be issued to a licensee who has met all reporting requirements as required by Natural Resources Article, §4-206, Annotated Code of Maryland, and this regulation.

(2) An individual may be issued only one finfish trotline permit.

(3) An individual shall have their finfish trotline permit in their possession while using a finfish trotline.

(4) A finfish trotline permit may not be transferred.

(5) Reporting and Penalties.

(a) In addition to the requirements of Natural Resources Article, §4-206, Annotated Code of Maryland, a finfish trotline permittee shall report in the manner specified by the Department.

(b) In addition to any other penalty established in COMAR 08.02.13, failure to comply with this regulation may result in the suspension of the current permit or the denial of a subsequent permit.

(c) Prior to suspending a permit under this regulation or denying an application for a permit, the Department shall give the licensee notice of its intended action and an opportunity to appear at a hearing conducted in accordance with the contested case procedures set forth in State Government Article, Title 10, Subtitle 2, Annotated Code of Maryland, and COMAR 08.01.04.