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Minnesota Legislature

Office of the Revisor of Statutes

Key: (1) language to be deleted (2) new language

  

                         Laws of Minnesota 1985 

                        CHAPTER 236-S.F.No. 1219
           An act relating to natural resources; making 
          groundwater protection a watershed district purpose; 
          establishing a procedure for increasing the number of 
          watershed district managers; defining certain 
          proceedings as contested cases; providing a procedure 
          for noncontroversial proceedings; providing for 
          appeals; permitting certain insurance; amending 
          Minnesota Statutes 1984, sections 112.36, subdivision 
          2; 112.37, subdivision 1a; 112.401; 471.98, 
          subdivision 2; and 473.882, subdivision 1; proposing 
          coding for new law in Minnesota Statutes, chapter 112; 
          repealing Minnesota Statutes 1984, section 112.37, 
          subdivision 6. 
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MINNESOTA: 
    Section 1.  Minnesota Statutes 1984, section 112.36, 
subdivision 2, is amended to read: 
    Subd. 2.  [PURPOSES OF DISTRICT.] A watershed district may 
be established for any or all of the following conservation 
purposes: 
    (1) Control or alleviation of damage by flood waters; 
    (2) Improvement of stream channels for drainage, 
navigation, and any other public purpose; 
    (3) Reclaiming or filling wet and overflowed lands; 
    (4) Providing water supply for irrigation; 
    (5) Regulating the flow of streams and conserving the 
waters thereof; 
    (6) Diverting or changing watercourses in whole or in part; 
    (7) Providing and conserving water supply for domestic, 
industrial, recreational, agricultural, or other public use; 
    (8) Providing for sanitation and public health and 
regulating the use of streams, ditches, or watercourses for the 
purpose of disposing of waste; 
    (9) Repair, improve, relocate, modify, consolidate, and 
abandon, in whole or in part, drainage systems within a 
watershed district; 
    (10) Imposition of preventive or remedial measures for the 
control or alleviation of land and soil erosion and siltation of 
watercourses or bodies of water affected thereby; 
    (11) Regulating improvements by riparian landowners of the 
beds, banks, and shores of lakes, streams, and marshes by permit 
or otherwise in order to preserve the same for beneficial use;  
    (12) Providing for the generation of hydroelectric power;  
and 
    (13) Protecting or enhancing the quality of water in 
watercourses or bodies of water; and 
    (14) providing for the protection of groundwater and 
regulating groundwater use to preserve groundwater for 
beneficial use. 
    Sec. 2.  Minnesota Statutes 1984, section 112.37, 
subdivision 1a, is amended to read: 
    Subd. 1a.  The nominating petition shall set forth the 
following: 
    (1) The name of the proposed district and a statement in 
general terms setting forth the territory to be included in the 
district; 
    (2) The necessity for the district, the contemplated 
improvements within the district, and the reasons why the 
district and the contemplated improvements would be conducive to 
public health and public welfare, or accomplish any of the 
purposes of this chapter; 
    (3) The number of managers proposed for the district. 
Except as otherwise provided in subdivisions 6 and 7, the 
managers shall be not less than three nor more than five nine, 
and shall be selected from a list of at least ten nominees 
containing at least twice the number of managers to be 
selected.  No manager shall be a public officer of the county, 
state, or federal government, provided that a soil and water 
conservation supervisor may be a manager; 
    (4) A map of the proposed district; and, 
    (5) A request for the establishment of the district as 
proposed. 
    Sec. 3.  Minnesota Statutes 1984, section 112.401, is 
amended to read: 
    112.401 [BOARD HEARINGS; REFERENCE.] 
    Subdivision 1.  [PROCEDURE.] In any proceeding under this 
chapter, where a public hearing is required, (a) A rulemaking 
hearing shall be conducted under chapter 14.  
    (b) A hearing must be conducted as a contested case under 
the provisions of chapter 14 if the hearing is:  
    (1) in a proceeding to establish or terminate a watershed 
district; or 
    (2) of an appeal under section 112.801.  
    (c) Notwithstanding chapter 14, other hearings under this 
chapter, except hearings under paragraphs (a) and (b), shall be 
conducted by the board under this section.  The board may 
refer any question of fact the hearing to a member one or more 
members of the board or referee either to hear evidence and 
report it to the board, or an administrative law judge to hear 
evidence and make findings of fact and report them to the board. 
    Subd. 2.  [PROCEDURE FOR NONCONTROVERSIAL PLANS OR 
PETITIONS.] (a) If the board finds that a watershed plan or 
petition that would be given a hearing under subdivision 1, 
paragraph (c), is noncontroversial, the board may proceed under 
this subdivision.  
    (b) The board must give notice that the plan or petition 
has been filed.  The notice must be made:  
    (1) by publication once each week for two successive weeks 
in a legal newspaper in each county affected; 
    (2) by mail to the county auditor of each county affected; 
and 
    (3) by mail to the chief official of each home rule charter 
and statutory city affected.  
    (c) The notice: 
    (1) must describe the actions proposed by the plan or 
petition; 
    (2) invite written comments on the plan or petition for 
consideration by the board; 
    (3) state that a person who objects to the actions proposed 
in the plan or petition may submit a written request for hearing 
to the board within 30 days of the last publication of the 
notice of filing of the plan or petition; and 
    (4) state that if a timely request for hearing is not 
received, the board may make a decision on the plan or petition 
at a future meeting of the board. 
    (d) If one or more timely requests for hearing are 
received, the board must hold a hearing on the plan or petition. 
    Subd. 3.  [APPEAL.] A party that is aggrieved by the 
decision made by the order of the board may appeal the order to 
the district court. 
    Sec. 4.  [112.421] [PROCEDURE FOR INCREASING NUMBER OF 
MANAGERS.] 
    Subdivision 1.  [PETITION AND NOTICE.] A petition must be 
filed with the secretary of the board to initiate proceedings to 
increase the number of managers of a watershed district.  The 
petition must be signed as provided in section 112.37, 
subdivision 1, or signed by the board of managers of the 
watershed district.  When the petition is filed, the board shall 
order a hearing to be held on the petition.  Notice of hearing 
must be given in the same manner as a nominating petition. 
    Subd. 2.  [HEARING.] If the board determines at the hearing 
that an increase in the number of managers would serve the 
public welfare, public interest, and the purpose of this 
chapter, the board shall increase the number of managers.  If 
the district affects more than one county, the board, by order, 
shall direct the distribution of the managers among the affected 
counties. 
    Sec. 5.  Minnesota Statutes 1984, section 471.98, 
subdivision 2, is amended to read: 
    Subd. 2.  "Political subdivision" includes a statutory or 
home rule charter city, a county or, a town, a watershed 
management organization as defined in section 473.876, 
subdivision 9, or an instrumentality thereof having independent 
policy making and appropriating authority.  For the purposes of 
sections 471.98 and 471.981, the governing body of a town is the 
town board. 
    Sec. 6.  Minnesota Statutes 1984, section 473.882, 
subdivision 1, is amended to read: 
    Subdivision 1.  [WATERSHED MANAGEMENT TAX DISTRICT.] Any 
local government unit planning for water management under 
sections 473.878 and 473.879 may establish a watershed 
management tax district in the territory within the watershed, 
for the purpose of paying the costs of the planning required 
under sections 473.878 and 473.879.  Any local government unit 
which has part of its territory within a watershed for which a 
plan has been adopted in accordance with section 473.878 and 
which has a local water management plan adopted in accordance 
with section 473.879 may establish a watershed management tax 
district in the territory within the watershed, for the purpose 
of paying capital costs of the water management facilities 
described in the capital improvement program of the plans and 
for the purpose of paying for normal and routine maintenance of 
the facilities.  A county or counties required by section 
473.878, subdivision 2, to prepare, adopt, and implement a 
watershed plan may shall apportion the costs of planning, 
capital improvements, and maintenance proportionate to benefits. 
The county may apportion the costs among the minor watershed 
units in the watershed, or among the statutory and home rule 
charter cities and towns having territory in the watershed, and 
for this purpose may establish more than one watershed 
management tax district in the watershed. 
    Sec. 7.  [REPEALER.] 
    Minnesota Statutes 1984, section 112.37, subdivision 6, is 
repealed. 
    Approved May 24, 1985