(1) In addition to meeting other requirements specified in this chapter, each applicant for certification as a deputy pilot must:
(a) Be at least 21 years of age, as evidenced by a copy of a birth certificate or other legal proof of age.
(b) Have successfully completed 12 years of formal education, as evidenced by a high school diploma or by equivalent evidence thereof that is satisfactory to the board.
(c) Be in good physical and mental health, as evidenced by documentary proof of having satisfactorily passed a complete physical examination administered by a licensed physician within the preceding 6 months. The board shall adopt rules to establish requirements for passing the physical examination, which rules shall establish minimum standards for the physical or mental capabilities necessary to carry out the professional duties of a certificated deputy pilot. Such standards shall include zero tolerance for any controlled substance regulated under chapter 893 unless that individual is under the care of a physician and that controlled substance was prescribed by that physician. To maintain eligibility as a certificated deputy pilot, each certificated deputy pilot must annually provide documentary proof of having satisfactorily passed a complete physical examination administered by a licensed physician. The physician must know the minimum standards and certify that the certificateholder satisfactorily meets the standards. The standards for certificateholders shall include a drug test.
(d) Have had maritime experience satisfactory to the board prior to taking the examination required under s. 310.081(2), as evidenced by documentation of the following service while holding a United States Coast Guard license:
1. At least 2 years of service at sea during the 5-year period immediately preceding the examination, 1 year of which must have been in at least the capacity of an unlimited second mate;
2. At least 2 years of service during the 5-year period immediately preceding the examination in a deepwater United States port as an active first-class unlimited pilot serving on at least an unlimited second mate’s license or a license as master of freight and towing vessel of at least 1,600 gross registered tons upon oceans, and acting under authority of a duly constituted governmental regulatory entity;
3. At least 2 years of service during the 5-year period immediately preceding the examination as an active first-class unlimited pilot serving on a Great Lakes unlimited master’s license;
4. At least 2 years of towing experience during the 5-year period immediately preceding the examination, 1 year of which must have been in the capacity of master of a tugboat/barge combination of at least 5,000 gross registered tons, combined tonnage, while holding a license as master of freight and towing vessel of at least 1,600 gross registered tons upon oceans; or
5. At least 3 years of experience as a deck watch officer during the 10-year period immediately preceding the examination, 1 year of which in the 5-year period immediately preceding the exam must have been as the commanding officer, executive officer, or operations officer of a United States Navy vessel or a United States Coast Guard vessel of at least 1,600 gross tons, and must currently hold a United States Coast Guard license of at least an unlimited second mate.
(e) Submit full documentation of sea time through discharges, continuous discharge books, or other official documents.
(f) Submit proof of sufficient maritime background and experience, except for required trips, to enable the applicant, if not already so licensed, to be eligible to obtain a valid United States Coast Guard first-class unlimited pilot’s license covering all of the waters of the port in which service as a deputy pilot is intended within 90 days of the appointment as a deputy pilot.
(2) The board may adopt rules authorizing equivalent combinations of service from two or more of the areas specified in subparagraphs (1)(d)1., 2., 3., 4., and 5. However, the board may waive the maritime experience requirements prescribed in paragraph (1)(d) when necessary to fill an opening, provided an applicant meeting such requirements has not applied for the opening and the opening has been advertised more than once.
(3) The initial certificate issued to a deputy pilot shall be valid for a period of 12 months, and at the end of this period, the certificate shall automatically expire and shall not be renewed. During this period, the board shall thoroughly evaluate the deputy pilot’s performance for suitability to continue training and shall make appropriate recommendations to the department. Upon receipt of a favorable recommendation by the board, the department shall issue a certificate to the deputy pilot, which shall be valid for a period of 2 years. The certificate may be renewed only two times, except in the case of a fully licensed pilot who is cross-licensed as a deputy pilot in another port, and provided the deputy pilot meets the requirements specified for pilots in paragraph (1)(c).
(4) Notwithstanding s. 112.011 or any other provision of law relating to the restoration of civil rights, an applicant shall be disqualified from applying for and shall be denied a deputy pilot certificate if the applicant, regardless of adjudication, has ever been found guilty of, or pled guilty or nolo contendere to, a charge which was:
(a) A felony or first degree misdemeanor which directly related to the navigation or operation of a vessel; or
(b) A felony involving the sale of or trafficking in, or conspiracy to sell or traffic in, a controlled substance as defined by chapter 893, or an offense under the laws of any state or country which, if committed in this state, would constitute the felony of selling or trafficking in, or conspiracy to sell or traffic in, such controlled substance.
History.—s. 2, ch. 75-201; s. 3, ch. 76-168; s. 1, ch. 77-457; ss. 7, 16, ch. 78-140; s. 2, ch. 81-318; ss. 1, 2, 3, ch. 84-185; ss. 3, 10, 11, ch. 86-280; s. 2, ch. 89-262; s. 4, ch. 90-54; s. 1, ch. 90-144; s. 79, ch. 91-221; s. 4, ch. 91-429; s. 341, ch. 94-119; s. 2, ch. 2000-356.