The state Department of Land and Natural Resources is seeking to shore up its rules regarding coral damage in order to help protect the marine invertebrates.
DLNR staff are requesting the Board of Land and Natural Resources schedule a public hearing to consider the changes. The board may make the decision Friday.
The proposed changes include making penalties cumulative to each violation.
The definition of damage would be expanded to include scraping, smothering or the poisoning of coral.
Fines may also be implemented for each head of damaged coral less than one square meter in size.
No penalties would be issued for the inadvertent damage or taking of coral less than half a square meter in size if done with a vessel or accidental physical contact.