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Minnesota Legislature

Office of the Revisor of Statutes

HF 1466

1st Engrossment - 90th Legislature (2017 - 2018) Posted on 03/06/2017 03:43pm

KEY: stricken = removed, old language.
underscored = added, new language.
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A bill for an act
relating to natural resources; modifying certain authorities related to water law;
modifying riparian buffer requirements; providing aid to counties and watershed
districts to assume jurisdiction of implementing and enforcing buffer law;
appropriating money; amending Minnesota Statutes 2016, sections 103B.101,
subdivision 12a; 103F.411, subdivision 1; 103F.48, subdivisions 1, 3, 7; proposing
coding for new law in Minnesota Statutes, chapter 477A.

BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MINNESOTA:

Section 1.

Minnesota Statutes 2016, section 103B.101, subdivision 12a, is amended to
read:


Subd. 12a.

Authority to issue penalty orders.

(a) deleted text beginA county or watershed district with
jurisdiction or
deleted text end The Board of Water and Soil Resources may issue an order requiring violations
of the water resources riparian protection requirements under sections 103F.415, 103F.421,
and 103F.48 to be corrected and administratively assessing monetary penalties up to $500
for noncompliance commencing on day one of the 11th month after the noncompliance
notice was issued. The proceeds collected from an administrative penalty order issued under
this section must be remitted to deleted text beginthe county or watershed district with jurisdiction over the
noncompliant site, or otherwise remitted to
deleted text end the Board of Water and Soil Resources.

(b) Before exercising this authority, the Board of Water and Soil Resources must adopt
a plan containing procedures for the issuance of administrative penalty orders deleted text beginby local
governments and the board as authorized in this subdivision
deleted text end. This plan, and any subsequent
amendments, deleted text beginwill becomedeleted text endnew text begin isnew text end effective 30 days after being published in the State Register.
The initial plan must be published in the State Register no later than July 1, 2017.

(c) Administrative penalties may be reissued and appealed under paragraph (a) according
to section 103F.48, subdivision 9.

Sec. 2.

Minnesota Statutes 2016, section 103F.411, subdivision 1, is amended to read:


Subdivision 1.

Authority.

The Board of Water and Soil Resources, in consultation with
counties, soil and water conservation districts, and other appropriate agencies, shall adopt
a model ordinance and rules that serve as a guide for local governments new text beginthat have adopted
a soil loss ordinance
new text endto implement sections 103F.401 to 103F.455 and provide administrative
procedures for the board for sections 103F.401 to 103F.455.

Sec. 3.

Minnesota Statutes 2016, section 103F.48, subdivision 1, is amended to read:


Subdivision 1.

Definitions.

(a) For the purposes of this section, the following terms have
the meanings given them.

(b) "Board" means the Board of Water and Soil Resources.

(c) "Buffer" means an area consisting of perennial vegetation, excluding invasive plants
and noxious weeds, adjacent to all bodies of water within the state and that protects the
water resources of the state from runoff pollution; stabilizes soils, shores, and banks; and
protects or provides riparian corridors.

(d) "Buffer protection map" means buffer maps established and maintained by the
commissioner of natural resources.

(e) "Commissioner" means the commissioner of natural resources.

(f) "Executive director" means the executive director of the Board of Water and Soil
Resources.

(g) "Local water management authority" means a watershed district, metropolitan water
management organization, or county operating separately or jointly in its role as local water
management authority under chapter 103B or 103D.

(h) "Normal water level" means the level evidenced by the long-term presence of surface
water as indicated directly by hydrophytic plants or hydric soils or indirectly determined
via hydrological models or analysis.

(i) "Public waters" deleted text beginhas the meaning given in section 103G.005, subdivision 15. The termdeleted text endnew text begin
means
new text end public waters deleted text beginas used in this section applies to watersdeleted text end that are on the public waters
inventory as provided in section 103G.201.

(j) "With jurisdiction" means a deleted text beginboard determination that thedeleted text end county or watershed district
new text begin that new text endhas adopted a rule, ordinance, or official controls providing procedures for deleted text beginthe issuance
of administrative penalty orders,
deleted text end enforcementdeleted text begin,deleted text end and appeals for purposes of this section deleted text beginand
section 103B.101, subdivision 12a
deleted text endnew text begin and that has notified the boardnew text end.

Sec. 4.

Minnesota Statutes 2016, section 103F.48, subdivision 3, is amended to read:


Subd. 3.

Water resources riparian protection requirements on public waters and
public drainage systems.

(a) Except as provided in paragraph (b), landowners owning
property adjacent to a water body identified and mapped on a buffer protection map must
maintain a buffer to protect the state's water resources as follows:

(1) for all public watersnew text begin that have a shoreland classificationnew text end, the more restrictive of:

(i) a 50-foot average width, 30-foot minimum width, continuous buffer of perennially
rooted vegetation; or

(ii) the state shoreland standards and criteria adopted by the commissioner under section
103F.211; and

(2) for public drainage systems established under chapter 103Enew text begin and public waters that
do not have a shoreland classification
new text end, a 16.5-foot minimum width continuous buffer as
provided in section 103E.021, subdivision 1. The buffer vegetation shall not impede future
maintenance of the ditch.

(b) A landowner owning property adjacent to a water body identified in a buffer protection
map and whose property is used for cultivation farming may meet the requirements under
paragraph (a) by adopting an alternative riparian water quality practice, or combination of
structural, vegetative, and management practices, based on the Natural Resources
Conservation Service Field Office Technical Guide or other practices approved by the board,
that provide water quality protection comparable to the buffer protection for the water body
that the property abuts. Included in these practices are retention ponds and alternative
measures that prevent overland flow to the water resource.

(c) The width of a buffer on public waters must be measured from the top or crown of
the bank. Where there is no defined bank, measurement must be from the edge of the normal
water level. The width of the buffer on public drainage systems must be measured as provided
in section 103E.021, subdivision 1.

(d) Upon request by a landowner or authorized agent or operator of a landowner, a
technical professional employee or contractor of the soil and water conservation district or
its delegate may issue a validation of compliance with the requirements of this subdivision.
The soil and water conservation district validation may be appealed to the board as described
in subdivision 9.

(e) Buffers or alternative water quality practices required under paragraph (a) or (b)
must be in place on or beforedeleted text begin:
deleted text end

deleted text begin (1) November 1, 2017, for public waters; and
deleted text end

deleted text begin (2)deleted text end November 1, 2018deleted text begin, for public drainage systemsdeleted text end.

(f) Nothing in this section limits the eligibility of a landowner or authorized agent or
operator of a landowner to participate in federal or state conservation programs, including
enrolling or reenrolling in federal conservation programs.

Sec. 5.

Minnesota Statutes 2016, section 103F.48, subdivision 7, is amended to read:


Subd. 7.

Corrective actions.

(a) If the soil and water conservation district determines
a landowner is not in compliance with this sectionnew text begin and the landowner has declined state or
federal assistance to pay 100 percent of the cost to establish buffers or other water-resource
protection measures approved by the board
new text end, the district must notify the county or watershed
district with jurisdiction over the noncompliant site and the board. The county or watershed
district with jurisdiction or the board must provide the landowner with a list of corrective
actions needed to come into compliance and a practical timeline to meet the requirements
in this section. The county or watershed district with jurisdiction must provide a copy of
the corrective action notice to the board.

(b) A county or watershed district exercising jurisdiction under this subdivision deleted text beginand the
enforcement authority granted in section 103B.101, subdivision 12a,
deleted text end shall affirm deleted text begintheirdeleted text endnew text begin itsnew text end
jurisdiction and identify the ordinance, rule, or other official controls to carry out the
compliance provisions of this section deleted text beginand section 103B.101, subdivision 12a,deleted text end by notice to
the board deleted text beginprior to March 31, 2017deleted text end. A county or watershed district must provide notice to
the board at least 60 days prior to the effective date of a subsequent decision on their
jurisdiction.

(c) If the landowner does not comply with the list of actions and timeline provided, the
county or watershed district may enforce this section deleted text beginunder the authority granted in section
103B.101, subdivision 12a, or
deleted text end by rule of the watershed district or ordinance or other official
control of the county. deleted text beginBefore exercising administrative penalty authority, a county or
watershed district must adopt a plan consistent with the plan adopted by the board containing
procedures for the issuance of administrative penalty orders and may issue orders beginning
November 1, 2017.
deleted text end If a county or watershed district with jurisdiction over the noncompliant
site has not adopted a plan, rule, ordinance, or official control under this paragraph, the
board must enforce this section under the authority granted in section 103B.101, subdivision
12a
.

(d) If the county, watershed district, or board determines that sufficient steps have been
taken to fully resolve noncompliance, all or part of the penalty may be forgiven.

(e) An order issued under paragraph (c) may be appealed to the board as provided under
subdivision 9.

(f) A corrective action is not required for conditions resulting from a flood or other act
of nature.

(g) A landowner agent or operator of a landowner may not remove or willfully degrade
a riparian buffer or water quality practice, wholly or partially, unless the agent or operator
has obtained a signed statement from the property owner stating that the permission for the
work has been granted by the unit of government authorized to approve the work in this
section or that a buffer or water quality practice is not required as validated by the soil and
water conservation district. Removal or willful degradation of a riparian buffer or water
quality practice, wholly or partially, by an agent or operator is a separate and independent
offense and may be subject to the corrective actions and penalties in this subdivision.

new text begin (h) A county or watershed district or the board must not enforce this section unless
federal or state assistance is available to the landowner to pay 100 percent of the cost to
establish buffers or other water-resource protection measures approved by the board.
new text end

Sec. 6.

new text begin [477A.21] RIPARIAN PROTECTION AID.
new text end

new text begin Subdivision 1. new text end

new text begin Definitions. new text end

new text begin For purposes of this section, the following terms have the
meanings given:
new text end

new text begin (1) "buffer protection map" has the meaning given under section 103F.48, subdivision
1; and
new text end

new text begin (2) "public watercourses" means public waters and public drainage systems subject to
riparian protection requirements under section 103F.48.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 2. new text end

new text begin Certifications to commissioner. new text end

new text begin (a) The Board of Water and Soil Resources
must certify to the commissioner of revenue, on or before July 1 each year, which counties
and watershed districts have affirmed their jurisdiction under section 103F.48, and the
proportion of centerline miles of public watercourses, and miles of public drainage system
ditches on the buffer protection map, within each county and each watershed district within
the county with affirmed jurisdiction.
new text end

new text begin (b) On or before July 1 each year, the commissioner of natural resources shall certify to
the commissioner of revenue the statewide and countywide number of centerline miles of
public watercourses and miles of public drainage system ditches on the buffer protection
map.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 3. new text end

new text begin Distribution. new text end

new text begin (a) A county that is certified under subdivision 2, or that portion
of a county containing a watershed district certified under subdivision 2, is eligible to receive
aid under this section to enforce and implement the riparian protection and water quality
practices under section 103F.48. Each county's preliminary aid amount is equal to the
proportion calculated under paragraph (b) multiplied by the appropriation amount for the
appropriate year under subdivision 5.
new text end

new text begin (b) The commissioner must compute each county's proportion. A county's proportion is
equal to the ratio of the sum in clause (1) to the sum in clause (2):
new text end

new text begin (1) the sum of the total number of acres in the county classified as class 2a under section
273.13, subdivision 23, the countywide number of centerline miles of public watercourses
on the buffer protection map, and the countywide number of miles of public drainage system
ditches on the buffer protection map; and
new text end

new text begin (2) the sum of the statewide total number of acres classified as class 2a under section
273.13, subdivision 23, the statewide total number of centerline miles of public watercourses
on the buffer protection map, and the statewide total number of public drainage system
miles on the buffer protection map.
new text end

new text begin (c) Aid to a county shall not be greater than $200,000 or less than $50,000. If the sum
of the preliminary aids payable to counties under paragraph (a) is greater or less than the
appropriation under subdivision 5, the commissioner of revenue must calculate the percentage
of adjustment necessary so that the total of the aid under paragraph (a) equals the total
amount available for aid under subdivision 5, subject to the minimum and maximum amounts
specified in this paragraph.
new text end

new text begin (d) If only a portion of a county is certified as eligible to receive aid under subdivision
2, the aid otherwise payable to that county under this section must be multiplied by a fraction,
the numerator of which is the buffer protection map miles of the certified watershed districts
contained within the county and the denominator of which is the total buffer protection map
miles of the county.
new text end

new text begin (e) Any aid that would otherwise be paid to a county or portion of a county that is not
certified under subdivision 2 shall be paid to the Board of Water and Soil Resources for
enforcing and implementing the riparian protection and water quality practices under section
103F.48.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 4. new text end

new text begin Payments. new text end

new text begin The commissioner of revenue must compute the amount of riparian
protection aid payable to each eligible county and to the Board of Water and Soil Resources
under this section. On or before August 1 each year, the commissioner must certify the
amount to be paid to each county and the Board of Water and Soil Resources in the following
year, except that the payments for 2017 must be certified by July 15, 2017. The commissioner
must pay riparian protection aid to counties and to the Board of Water and Soil Resources
in the same manner and at the same time as aid payments under section 477A.015.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 5. new text end

new text begin Appropriations. new text end

new text begin $10,000,000 each year is appropriated from the general fund
to the commissioner of revenue to make the payments required under this section.
new text end

new text begin EFFECTIVE DATE. new text end

new text begin This section is effective the day following final enactment and
applies to aids payable in 2017 and thereafter.
new text end