(A) A person or public or private entity is liable to the State for the unlawful gross destruction of or injury to wildlife, aquatic life, endangered or threatened species, or the lands or waters owned by the State. For a deliberate or grossly negligent act, the State must be awarded damages of three times the value of the resource affected, plus costs, including attorney's fees. Monies paid in satisfaction of these claims must be used to restore, replenish, or enhance wildlife, aquatic life, endangered or threatened species, or the lands or waters owned by the State. For purposes of this section, the injury or damages must be caused by other than pollution.
(B) The department is the agency primarily responsible for the enforcement and implementation of this section. Other state agencies and governmental entities shall cooperate with the department in an effort to investigate the causes of the destruction or injury and shall assist in collecting the appropriate damages.
(C) This section does not apply to ordinary agricultural practices.
HISTORY: 1992 Act No. 397, § 1; 1993 Act No. 181, § 1257.