26.22   Sales, etc.
26.30   Forest insects and diseases; department jurisdiction; procedure.
26.35   Forest productivity.
26.36   Forest energy resources.
26.37   Lake states wood utilization consortium.
26.38   Forest grant program.
26.39   Forestry education and training.
26.40   Forestry education grant program.
26.42   Forestry diversification.
26.97   Law enforcement and police power.
26.98   General penalty.
26.985   Penalties, repeaters.
26.99   Parties to a violation.
Ch. 26 Cross-reference Cross-reference: See definitions in s. 24.01.
26.01 26.01 Definitions. In this chapter:
26.01(1) (1) Unless the context requires otherwise, "department" means the department of natural resources.
26.01(2) (2) "Forest fire" means uncontrolled, wild, or running fires occurring on forest, marsh, field, cutover, or other lands or involving farm, city, or village property and improvements incidental to the uncontrolled, wild, or running fires occurring on forest, marsh, field, cutover, or other lands.
26.01 History History: 2001 a. 103 ss. 40, 42.
26.02 26.02 Council on forestry.
26.02(1)(1) Duties. The council on forestry shall advise the governor, the legislature, the department of natural resources, and other state agencies, as determined to be appropriate by the council, on all of the following topics as they affect forests located in this state:
26.02(1)(a) (a) The protection of forests from fire, insects, and disease.
26.02(1)(b) (b) The practice of sustainable forestry, as defined in s. 28.04 (1) (e).
26.02(1)(c) (c) Reforestation and forestry genetics.
26.02(1)(d) (d) Management and protection of urban forests.
26.02(1)(e) (e) Increasing the public's knowledge and awareness of forestry issues.
26.02(1)(f) (f) Forestry research.
26.02(1)(g) (g) Increasing the economic development of the forestry industry and employment in the forestry industry.
26.02(1)(h) (h) Marketing and use of forest products.
26.02(1)(i) (i) Legislation that impacts on the management of forest lands in this state.
26.02(1)(j) (j) Staffing and funding needs for forestry programs conducted by the state.
26.02(2) (2)Report.
26.02(2)(a)(a) The council on forestry shall prepare a biennial report on the status of the state's forest resources and forestry industry. The report shall include a summary of each of the following:
26.02(2)(a)1. 1. The magnitude, nature, and extent of the forest resources in this state.
26.02(2)(a)2. 2. The current use in this state for forest products and the benefits that these forest products provide to the state.
26.02(2)(a)3. 3. The projected future demand for forest products and the projected benefits that these forest products will provide to the state in the future.
26.02(2)(a)4. 4. The types of owners and forms of ownership that apply to forests in this state, including the reasons why persons own forest land.
26.02(2)(a)5. 5. The success of existing incentives that are offered to stimulate the development of forest resources.
26.02(2)(a)6. 6. The possible economic opportunities in this state that may result if improved forest-product marketing, and increased business dealing in or use of forest products, occurs in this state.
26.02(2)(a)7. 7. Recommendations for increasing the economic development of the forestry industry and employment in the forestry industry.
26.02(2)(a)8. 8. The effect of state and local governmental laws and policy on forestry management and the location of markets for forest products.
26.02(2)(a)9. 9. Recommendations as to staffing and funding needs for forestry programs and other conservation programs related to forestry that are conducted by the state to support and enhance the development of forest resources.
26.02(2)(a)10. 10. Recommendations as to the need to increase the public's knowledge and awareness of forestry issues.
26.02(2)(b) (b) The council on forestry shall submit the report under this subsection no later than June 1 of each odd-numbered year for distribution to the governor and to the appropriate standing committees of the legislature under s. 13.172 (3). The first report shall be submitted no later than June 1, 2005. Each report shall cover the 24-month period ending on the December 31 immediately preceding the date of the report.
26.02 History History: 2001 a. 109; 2011 a. 32.
26.03 26.03 Harvest of raw forest products.
26.03(1b) (1b) Definitions. In this section:
26.03(1b)(a) (a) "Harvest" means to cut, remove or transport.
26.03(1b)(b) (b) "Harvesting" means cutting, removing or transporting.
26.03(1b)(c) (c) "Raw forest products" has the meaning given in s. 26.05 (1).
26.03(1g) (1g)Prohibition; delinquent taxes. No person may harvest any raw forest products, or direct the harvest of any raw forest products, from any land for which taxes are delinquent.
26.03(1m) (1m)Harvesting upon notification.
26.03(1m)(a)1.1. Unless otherwise authorized to do so by the county, no person may harvest any raw forest products, or direct the harvesting of any raw forest products, from any land until 14 days after the clerk of the county in which the land is located is notified of the person's proposal to harvest. The person shall notify the county clerk each year and may do so in any manner acceptable to the county. Each time the person notifies the county, the person shall describe the land upon which the harvesting will occur by quarter-quarter section, government lot or fractional lot, unless the county requires a different method for describing the land. Notification under this subdivision expires on the December 31 immediately following the notification, and no person may harvest, or direct the harvesting of, any additional raw forest products from the land until further notification that complies with this subdivision is provided to the county.
26.03(1m)(a)2. 2. Upon receipt of notifications under subd. 1., the county clerk shall provide notice to the town chairperson of each town in which the land from which raw forest products will be harvested is located and to the county treasurer. The county treasurer shall determine whether the county holds a tax certificate or tax deeds to any of the land involved. If the county holds a tax certificate, the county treasurer shall take action to collect the unpaid taxes represented by county-owned tax certificates or to prevent the harvesting of raw forest products from the land. If the county holds a tax deed, the county treasurer shall take action to prevent the harvesting of raw forest products from the land.
26.03(1m)(b) (b) Paragraph (a) 1. does not apply to a person harvesting raw forest products on public lands, as defined in s. 70.13 (7), to a person harvesting raw forest products for fuel wood for his or her home consumption, to a person harvesting for the purpose of clearing the land for agricultural use or to a person harvesting from the person's own land, any of the following:
26.03(1m)(b)1. 1. Boughs for his or her own use.
26.03(1m)(b)2. 2. Up to 5 Christmas trees for his or her own use.
26.03(1r) (1r)Harvesting upon recording.
26.03(1r)(a)(a) No purchaser of Indian reservation land or land to be placed upon the tax roll for the first time may harvest any raw forest products, or direct the harvesting of any raw forest products, from the land without first recording the instrument by which title to the land was acquired in the office of the register of deeds for the county in which the land is located.
26.03(1r)(b) (b) Paragraph (a) does not apply to a person harvesting raw forest products for fuel wood for his or her home consumption.
26.03(1v) (1v)Exceptions. This section does not apply to the harvesting of raw forest products for the purpose of establishing or maintaining a railroad track or structure, a pipeline, or a utility right-of-way by any of the following:
26.03(1v)(a) (a) An alternative telecommunications utility, as defined in s. 196.01 (1d).
26.03(1v)(b) (b) An electric cooperative, as defined in s. 196.025 (5) (ag).
26.03(1v)(c) (c) A public utility, as defined in s. 196.01 (5).
26.03(1v)(d) (d) A railroad, as defined in s. 195.02.
26.03(1v)(e) (e) A telecommunications carrier, as defined in s. 196.01 (8m).
26.03(1v)(f) (f) A telecommunications utility, as defined in s. 196.01 (10).
26.03(1v)(g) (g) A corporation licensed to do business in this state that is engaged in the business of transporting natural gas, petroleum products, water, or sewage through pipelines.
26.03(2) (2)Penalties.
26.03(2)(a)(a) Whoever violates sub. (1g), or a rule promulgated under sub. (1g), shall forfeit not less than $500 nor more than $10,000.
26.03(2)(b) (b) Whoever violates sub. (1m) or (1r), or a rule promulgated under sub. (1m) or (1r), shall forfeit not more than $100.
26.05 26.05 Timber theft.
26.05(1)(1) Definition. In this section, "raw forest products" means forest products not altered by a manufacturing process off the land from which they are taken and includes seedlings, saplings, shrubs, whole-tree chips, boughs, logs, pilings, posts, poles, cordwood products, pulpwood, fuel wood and Christmas trees.
26.05(2) (2)Consent of owner required. No person may cut, remove or transport raw forest products or direct the cutting, removal or transportation of raw forest products without the consent of the owner.
26.05(3) (3)Penalties.
26.05(3)(a)(a) A person who violates this section or a rule promulgated under this section is subject to a forfeiture of not less than $100 nor more than $10,000.
26.05(3)(b) (b) Instead of the forfeiture provided under par. (a), a person who intentionally violates this section, or a rule promulgated under this section, may be punished under s. 943.20 for theft.
26.05(3)(c) (c) In addition to any other penalty, a person who violates this section, or a rule promulgated under this section, is liable for the reasonable costs incurred to establish the volume and value of the raw forest products cut, removed or transported.
26.05 History History: 1981 c. 67; 1999 a. 190.
26.06 26.06 Enforcement, seizure and sale of materials.
26.06(1)(1) Foresters, forest supervisors, rangers and wardens of the department and the cruisers and foresters of the board of commissioners of public lands have the enforcement powers specified in s. 26.97 with respect to, and may seize, without process, any forest products unlawfully severed from public lands of the state, federal lands leased to the state, county forest lands entered under s. 28.11, forest croplands entered under subch. I of ch. 77 or managed forest land designated under subch. VI of ch. 77. Seized products cut from lands under the control of the board of commissioners of public lands shall be held for the commissioners and those cut from forest croplands, managed forest land or county forest shall be held for the owner, and subject to the payment of severance taxes, yield taxes or severance share thereon to the state. Products cut from state forest lands or federal lands leased to the department shall be appraised and sold. Products appraised at more than $500 shall be sold on sealed bids not less than 10 days after a class 1 notice has been published, under ch. 985, in the county where the material is located. Any sheriff may seize and hold for the owner thereof any forest products unlawfully severed or removed.
26.06(2) (2) Any person who, without the consent of a person legally able to give consent, removes any seized products or removes or defaces a seizure notice of the department or of any sheriff shall forfeit not less than $500 nor more than $10,000.
26.06(3) (3) Any person who transports, receives or conceals any forest products, knowing the same to have been unlawfully severed from the lands of another, shall be liable to the owner for double the value thereof and in addition shall be punished as provided in s. 943.34 (1).
26.07 26.07 Money, how disposed of. All money received from the sale of logs, lumber, shingles, timber, minerals or other articles seized under this chapter, or recovered in legal proceedings for damages done the public lands, shall be paid into the treasury to the credit of the respective funds to which the lands belong on which such trespasses were committed, and all other money collected as expenses, fees, penalties and damages for trespass on such lands shall be paid into the general fund.
26.08 26.08 Leases and licenses.
26.08(1)(1) The department may, from time to time, lease parts or parcels of state park lands or state forest lands. These leases shall contain proper covenants to guard against trespass and waste. The rents arising from these leases shall be paid into the state treasury to the credit of the proper fund. Licenses also may be granted to prospect for ore or mineral upon any of these lands; but proper security shall be taken that the licensees will fully inform the department of every discovery of ore or mineral and will restore the surface to its former condition and value if no discovery of valuable deposits is made. The department shall retain a copy of each lease or license and file the original in the office of the board of commissioners of public lands.
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2011-12 Wisconsin Statutes updated through 2013 Wis. Act 380 and all Supreme Court Orders entered before Sept. 3, 2014. Published and certified under s. 35.18. Changes effective after Sept. 3, 2014 are designated by NOTES. (Published 9-3-14)