language to be deleted (2) new language
CHAPTER 312-S.F.No. 2269 An act relating to water; clarifying provisions relating to hearings of the board of water and soil resources; increasing the level of exempted bids for watershed districts; modifying the public review period for wetland replacement plans; providing for notice of local wetland plan development to the commissioner of agriculture; requiring approval of certain wetland replacements; requiring a report on wetland law consolidation; amending Minnesota Statutes 1996, sections 103B.231, subdivision 9; 103D.105; 103D.641; and 103G.2242, subdivision 8; Minnesota Statutes 1997 Supplement, section 103G.2243, subdivision 1. BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MINNESOTA: Section 1. Minnesota Statutes 1996, section 103B.231, subdivision 9, is amended to read: Subd. 9. [APPROVAL BY THE BOARD.] After completion of the review under subdivision 8, the
board of water and soil resources shall review the plan as provided in sections 103D.401 and 103D.405. Theboard shall review the plan for conformance with the requirements of sections 103B.205 to 103B.255, and chapter 103D. The board shall not prescribe a plan, but may disapprove all or parts of a plan which it determines is not in conformance with the requirements of sections 103B.205 to 103B.255, and chapter 103D. If the capital improvement program is the subject of a dispute between counties, the board of water and soil resources shall make a final decision on the issue. The decision shall be binding on the organization and the counties involved. The board shall complete its review under this section within 90 days. Sec. 2. Minnesota Statutes 1996, section 103D.105, is amended to read: 103D.105 [BOARD HEARINGS.] Subdivision 1. [PROCEDURE.] (a) A rulemaking hearing must be conducted under chapter 14. (b) A hearing in a proceeding to establish or terminate a watershed district must be conducted.(b) Notwithstanding chapter 14, other hearings under this chapter, except hearings under paragraph (a), shall be conducted by the board under this section. The board may refer the hearing to one or more members of 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 management plan or petition that would be given a hearing under subdivision 1, paragraph (c)(b), is noncontroversial, the board may, except in a proceeding to establish or terminate a watershed district, proceed under this subdivision. (b) The board must give notice that the watershed management plan or petition has been filed. The notice must be made: (1) by publication in a legal newspaper in each county affected by the watershed district; (2) by mail to the auditor of each county affected by the watershed management plan or petition; and (3) by mail to the chief executive officer of each city affected. (c) The notice must: (1) 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. Sec. 3. Minnesota Statutes 1996, section 103D.641, is amended to read: 103D.641 [WORK WITHOUT BID.] If the managers find that the estimated cost of repair, including all fees and costs incurred for proceedings relating to it, is less than $20,000$25,000, it may have the work done by contract without advertising for bids. Sec. 4. Minnesota Statutes 1996, section 103G.2242, subdivision 8, is amended to read: Subd. 8. [PUBLIC COMMENT PERIOD.] Except for activities impacting less than 10,000 square feet of wetland, before approval or denial of a replacement plan under this section, comments may be made by the public to the local government unit for a period of 30 daysof 15 days or more, as determined by the local government unit. Sec. 5. Minnesota Statutes 1997 Supplement, section 103G.2243, subdivision 1, is amended to read: Subdivision 1. [GENERAL REQUIREMENTS; NOTICE AND PARTICIPATION.] (a) As an alternative to the rules adopted under section 103G.2242, subdivision 1, and the public value criteria established or approved under section 103B.3355, a comprehensive wetland protection and management plan may be developed by a local government unit, or one or more local government units operating under a joint powers agreement, provided that: (1) a notice is made at the beginning of the planning process to the board, the commissioner of natural resources, the pollution control agency, the commissioner of agriculture, local government units, and local citizens to actively participate in the development of the plan; and (2) the plan is implemented by ordinance as part of the local government's official controls under chapter 394, for a county; chapter 462, for a city; chapter 366, for a town; and by rules adopted under chapter 103D, for a watershed district; and chapter 103B, for a watershed management organization. (b) An organization that is invited to participate in the development of the local plan, but declines to do so and fails to participate or to provide written comments during the local review process, waives the right during board review to submit comments, except comments concerning consistency of the plan with laws and rules administered by that agency. In determining the merit of an agency comment, the board shall consider the involvement of the agency in the development of the local plan. Sec. 6. [MINELAND RECLAMATION PERMITS.] Notwithstanding Minnesota Statutes, section 103G.222, subdivision 1, the commissioner of natural resources shall approve the location of wetland replacements, through mineland reclamation permits authorized pursuant to Minnesota Statutes, section 93.481, for projects where replacement was begun prior to January 1, 1997, in accordance with individual permits issued by the United States Army Corps of Engineers under section 404 of the federal Clean Water Act, United States Code, title 33, section 1344. Sec. 7. [WETLAND LAW CONSOLIDATION REPORT.] By March 1, 1999, the commissioner of natural resources, in conjunction with the executive director of the board of water and soil resources, shall submit a report to the house and senate environment and natural resources committees regarding the simplification of wetland law by consolidating public waters wetlands laws with the wetlands conservation act. The report shall include a discussion of the problems and benefits of a consolidation. Presented to the governor March 19, 1998 Signed by the governor March 23, 1998, 10:45 a.m.