DNR aquatic invasive species training and trailer decal repealed; affirmation passed

The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources aquatic invasive species (AIS) training and trailer decal program, which was due to launch this year, was repealed by the Minnesota Legislature during its recently completed special session.

In its place, the Legislature added an AIS affirmation provision to some licenses. The affirmation will be added to new watercraft and nonresident fishing licenses beginning in 2016, so no immediate actions are required under the new law.

“We appreciate the aquatic invasive species affirmation passed by the Legislature,” said Ann Pierce, section manager, for the DNR Ecological and Water Resources Division. “We will continue to use all educational and outreach tools available to reach out to Minnesotans and visitors to help keep our lakes and rivers healthy.”

Starting in 2016, all newly issued watercraft licenses will have an AIS affirmation section. All nonresident fishing licenses will also include the AIS affirmation section beginning in March 2016. License applicants after these dates will receive a summary of AIS laws and will be required to affirm that they have read and understand the summary in order to receive their license. No fees are associated with the affirmation.

The repealed law applied to anyone trailering a boat or water-related equipment, such as docks and lifts, in Minnesota. It would have required these individuals to take aquatic invasive species training and display a decal on their trailer starting July 15.