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

  

                         Laws of Minnesota 1991 

                        CHAPTER 316-S.F.No. 928 
           An act relating to agriculture; providing for 
          enforcement of agricultural laws; imposing penalties; 
          proposing coding for new law in Minnesota Statutes, 
          chapter 17. 
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MINNESOTA: 
     Section 1.  [17.981] [DEFINITION.] 
    As used in sections 1 to 4, "person" means an individual, 
corporation, association, cooperative, or partnership.  
    Sec. 2.  [17.982] [CRIMINAL AND ADMINISTRATIVE PENALTIES.] 
    Subdivision 1.  [CRIMINAL PENALTIES.] A person who violates 
chapter 29, 31, 31A, or 34 for which a penalty has not been 
prescribed is guilty of a misdemeanor.  
    Subd. 2.  [ADMINISTRATIVE PENALTIES.] (a) The commissioner 
may, as an alternative to misdemeanor prosecution, impose an 
administrative penalty on a person who violates a statute or 
rule enforceable by the commissioner.  For a first violation, 
the commissioner may impose an administrative penalty of not 
more than $1,000 for each violation.  For a second or succeeding 
violation, the commissioner may impose an administrative penalty 
of not more than $1,500 for each violation.  Each day a 
violation continues is a separate violation.  
    (b) In determining the amount of the administrative penalty 
the commissioner may consider:  
    (1) the willfulness of the violation; 
    (2) the gravity of the violation; 
    (3) the person's history of past violations; 
    (4) the number of violations; 
    (5) the economic benefit from the violation; and 
    (6) other factors identified in the commissioner's citation.
    (c) For a second or succeeding violation, the commissioner 
shall determine the amount of a penalty by considering the 
factors in paragraph (b) and:  
    (1) similarity between the violations; 
    (2) time elapsed since the last violation; and 
    (3) the person's response to the most recent violation.  
    Sec. 3.  [17.983] [ADMINISTRATIVE PENALTIES AND 
ENFORCEMENT.] 
    Subdivision 1.  [ADMINISTRATIVE PENALTIES; CITATION.] If a 
person has violated chapter 29, 31, 31A, or 34, the commissioner 
may issue a written citation to the person by personal service 
or by certified mail.  The citation shall describe the nature of 
the violation and the statute or rule alleged to have been 
violated; state the time for correction; and the amount of any 
proposed fine.  The citation must advise the person to notify 
the commissioner in writing within 30 days if the person wishes 
to appeal the citation.  If the person fails to appeal the 
citation, the citation is the final order and not subject to 
further review.  
    Subd. 2.  [FAILURE TO CORRECT.] If a person fails to 
correct a violation within the time prescribed by the 
commissioner, the commissioner shall notify the person by 
certified mail of the failure to correct and the penalty amount 
assessed.  The notice must state that the person must notify the 
commissioner in writing within 30 days if the person wishes to 
appeal the penalty.  If the person fails to appeal the penalty 
in writing within 30 days of receipt of the notice, the penalty 
is a final order and not subject to further review.  
    Subd. 3.  [CONTESTED CASE.] If a person appeals a citation 
or a penalty assessment within the time limits in subdivisions 1 
and 2, the commissioner, within 40 days after receiving the 
appeal, shall initiate a contested proceeding under chapter 14.  
The report of the administrative law judge is the final decision 
of the commissioner of agriculture.  
    Sec. 4.  [17.984] [INVESTIGATION.] 
    Subdivision 1.  [AUTHORITY.] To carry out the 
commissioner's enforcement duties under chapter 29, 31, 31A, or 
34, the commissioner may, upon presenting appropriate 
credentials, during regular working hours and at other 
reasonable times, inspect premises subject to the commissioner's 
enforcement and licensing authority for reasons related to the 
commissioner's enforcement and licensing authority; request 
information from persons with information relevant to an 
inspection; and inspect relevant papers and records, including 
business records.  The commissioner may issue notices in lieu of 
citations for minor violations if a notice is in the public 
interest.  
    Subd. 2.  [FAILURE TO COMPLY.] The commissioner may 
administer oaths, take and cause to be taken depositions of 
witnesses, and issue subpoenas, and may petition the district 
court in the county in which the premises is located to compel 
compliance with subpoenas or to permit an inspection. 
    Presented to the governor May 30, 1991 
    Signed by the governor June 3, 1991, 4:01 p.m.

Official Publication of the State of Minnesota Revisor of Statutes