(a) Timber and other products of State forests may be sold, cut, and removed under rules of the Department. The Department may establish and operate forest tree nurseries and forest tree seed orchards. Forest tree seedlings and seed from these nurseries and seed orchards may be sold to landowners of the State for purposes of forestation under rules adopted by the Department. When the Commissioner determines that a surplus of seedlings or seed exists, this surplus may be sold, and the sale shall be in conformity with the following priority of sale: first, to agencies of the federal government for planting in the State of North Carolina; second, to commercial nurseries and nurserymen within this State; and third, without distinction, to federal agencies, to other states, and to recognized research organizations for planting either within or outside of this State. The Department shall make reasonable rules governing the use by the public of State forests under its charge. These rules shall be posted in conspicuous places on and adjacent to the properties of the State and at the courthouse of the county or counties in which the properties are located. A violation of these rules is punishable as a Class 3 misdemeanor.
(b) The Department may construct, operate, and maintain within the State forests and other areas under its charge suitable public service facilities and conveniences, and may charge and collect reasonable fees for the use of these facilities and conveniences. The Department may also charge and collect reasonable fees for hunting privileges on State forests and fishing privileges in State forests, provided that these privileges shall be extended only to holders of State hunting and fishing licenses who comply with all State game and fish laws.
(c) The Department may grant to private individuals or companies concessions for operation of public service facilities for such periods and upon such conditions as the Department deems to be in the public interest. The Department may adopt reasonable rules for the regulation of the use by the public of the lands and waters under its charge and of the public service facilities and conveniences authorized under this section. A violation of these rules is punishable as a Class 3 misdemeanor.
(d) The authority granted to the Department under this section is in addition to any authority granted to the Department under any other provision of law. (2011-145, s. 13.25(o).)
Last modified: March 23, 2014