TITLE 20
Fish and Wildlife

CHAPTER 20-2
Licensing

SECTION 20-2-31


§ 20-2-31 Hunting and fishing licenses – Exceptions.

(a) Every valid license to hunt or fish in this state which is held by any resident of this state upon joining the armed forces or the merchant marine of the United States is hereby extended and is in force and valid until six (6) months following the termination of his or her service.

(b) Every member of the armed forces or of the merchant marine of the United States may hunt or fish in this state if that person procures a hunting or fishing license issued by the state of Rhode Island, the fee for which is that charged for a resident civilian.

(c) Every man or woman who was a part of the armed forces of the United States government and is now a one hundred percent (100%) disabled veteran, and any man or woman who is one hundred percent (100%) permanently disabled, is entitled, subject to the provisions of this title, to receive a license to hunt and/or fish in this state; and upon the presentation of his or her necessary military discharge identification and/or disability papers as prescribed by the department of environmental management shall, at the discretion of the licensing authority, receive, without the payment of any license fee, a continuing special form of license authorizing the man or woman to hunt and/or fish in this state in accordance with the provisions of this title and regulations issued pursuant to this title for so long as he or she so desires; provided, however, that the man or woman, having once made application for this license, shall not again be required to appear before the licensing authority to present his or her papers.

(d) A fresh water fishing license is not required of any blind person. For the purposes of this section, a person is blind only if his or her central visual acuity does not exceed 20/200 in the better eye with correcting lenses or if his or her visual acuity is greater than 20/200 but is accompanied by a limitation in the fields of vision such that the widest diameter of the visual field subtends an angle no greater than twenty degrees (20°).

(e) Every resident man or woman over the age of sixty-five (65) years is entitled, subject to the provisions of this title and the regulations issued pursuant to this title, to receive a special permanent license to hunt and/or fish in this state for which there is no fee.

(f) Any man or woman who is one hundred percent (100%) permanently disabled may apply to the clerk of any city or town to receive a license to fish in this state and upon presentation of a proof of his or her disability as prescribed by the department of environmental management receive, without the payment of any license fee, a continuing special form of license authorizing the man or woman to fish in this state for so long as he or she so desires; provided, however, that the man or woman, having once made application for this license, shall not again be required to appear before the licensing authority to present his or her papers.

(g) The director may by regulation designate no more than two (2) days in each year, which may or may not be consecutive, during which residents and non-residents may, without having a license and without payment of any fee, exercise the privileges of a holder of a fresh water fishing license. These persons are subject to all other limitations, restrictions, conditions, laws, rules, and regulations applicable to the holder of a fresh water fishing license.

(h) For the purpose of this section "man or woman who is one hundred percent (100%) permanently disabled" means an individual who has a physical or mental impairment and is receiving:

(1) Social security disability benefits (SSDI);

(2) Supplemental security income benefits (SSI).

All licenses which are issued to persons who qualify pursuant to this subsection shall be issued without the requirement of the payment of a fee and shall expire annually on February 28 of each year. Persons seeking the issuance or reissuance of licenses shall be required to present documentation establishing that the applicant is qualified, or remains qualified, pursuant to this subsection.

History of Section.
(P.L. 1981, ch. 197, § 3; P.L. 1982, ch. 30, § 1; P.L. 1989, ch. 146, § 1; P.L. 1989, ch. 254, § 1; P.L. 1998, ch. 127, § 2.)