(1) This section may be cited as the Senator Joe Carlucci Hunter Safety Act.
(2)(a) Except as provided in paragraph (b), a person born on or after June 1, 1975, may not be issued a license to take wild animal life with the use of a firearm, gun, bow, or crossbow in this state without having first successfully completed a hunter safety course as provided in this section, and without having in his or her personal possession a hunter safety certification card, as provided in this section.
(b) A person born on or after June 1, 1975, who has not successfully completed a hunter safety course may apply to the commission for a special authorization to hunt under supervision. The special authorization for supervised hunting shall be designated on any license or permit required under this chapter for a person to take game or fur-bearing animals and shall be valid for not more than 1 year. A special authorization for supervised hunting may not be issued more than once to the person applying for such authorization. A person issued a license with a special authorization to hunt under supervision must hunt under the supervision of, and in the presence of, a person 21 years or age or older who is licensed to hunt pursuant to s. 379.354 or who is exempt from licensing requirements or eligible for a free license pursuant to s. 379.353.
(3) The Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission shall institute and coordinate a statewide hunter safety course that must be offered in every county and consist of not more than 16 hours of instruction including, but not limited to, instruction in the competent and safe handling of firearms, conservation, and hunting ethics.
(4) The commission shall issue a permanent hunter safety certification card to each person who successfully completes the hunter safety course. The commission shall maintain records of hunter safety certification cards issued and shall establish procedures for replacing lost or destroyed cards.
(5) A hunter safety certification card issued by a wildlife agency of another state, or any Canadian province, which shows that the holder of the card has successfully completed a hunter safety course approved by the commission is an acceptable substitute for the hunter safety certification card issued by the commission.
(6) All persons subject to the requirements of subsection (2) must have in their personal possession proof of compliance with this section, while taking or attempting to take wildlife with the use of a firearm, gun, bow, or crossbow, and must, unless the requirement to complete a hunter safety course is deferred pursuant to this section, display a valid hunter safety certification card in order to purchase a Florida hunting license. After the issuance of such a license, the license itself shall serve as proof of compliance with this section. A holder of a lifetime license whose license does not indicate on the face of the license that a hunter safety course has been completed must have in his or her personal possession a hunter safety certification card, as provided by this section, while attempting to take wild animal life with the use of a firearm, gun, bow, or crossbow.
(7) The hunter safety requirements of this section do not apply to persons for whom licenses are not required under s. 379.353(2). (8) A person who violates this section commits a Level One violation under s. 379.401.