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Minnesota Legislature

Office of the Revisor of Statutes

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

                            CHAPTER 345-S.F.No. 1555 
                  An act relating to agriculture; providing a preemption 
                  of local regulation of phosphorous fertilizers; 
                  regulating the use on turf of certain fertilizers 
                  containing phosphorus; providing for enforcement; 
                  prohibiting fertilizer applications to an impervious 
                  surface; requiring a report; amending Minnesota 
                  Statutes 2000, sections 18C.005, by adding a 
                  subdivision; 18C.211, subdivision 2; proposing coding 
                  for new law in Minnesota Statutes, chapter 18C. 
        BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MINNESOTA: 
           Section 1.  Minnesota Statutes 2000, section 18C.005, is 
        amended by adding a subdivision to read: 
           Subd. 18a.  [LOCAL UNIT OF GOVERNMENT.] "Local unit of 
        government" has the meaning given in section 18B.01, subdivision 
        14a. 
           Sec. 2.  [18C.110] [PREEMPTION OF LOCAL LAW.] 
           (a) Except as specifically provided in this chapter, a 
        local unit of government may not adopt any ordinance, regulate, 
        or in any way restrict the distribution, sale, handling, use, or 
        application of phosphorous fertilizers and phosphorous 
        fertilizer products that are applied or will be applied to land 
        used for growing crops or any other agricultural use.  
           (b) Except as specifically provided in this chapter, a 
        local unit of government may not adopt any ordinance that 
        prohibits or regulates the registration, labeling, distribution, 
        sale, handling, use, application, or disposal of turf fertilizer 
        containing phosphorus.  
           (c) This section does not prohibit a local ordinance that 
        restricts the sale of turf phosphorous fertilizer that was in 
        effect on August 1, 2002. 
           (d) This section does not preempt local authority or 
        responsibility for zoning, fire codes, or hazardous waste 
        disposal.  
           (e) Paragraphs (a) and (d) are effective the day following 
        final enactment.  Paragraphs (b) and (c) are effective January 
        1, 2004. 
           Sec. 3.  Minnesota Statutes 2000, section 18C.211, 
        subdivision 2, is amended to read: 
           Subd. 2.  [GUARANTEES OF THE NUTRIENTS.] (a) A person may 
        guarantee plant nutrients other than nitrogen, phosphorus, and 
        potassium only if allowed or required by commissioner's rule. 
           (b) The guarantees for the plant nutrients must be 
        expressed in the elemental form. 
           (c) The sources of other elements, oxides, salt, and 
        chelates, may be required to be stated on the application for 
        registration and may be included as a parenthetical statement on 
        the label.  Other beneficial substances or compounds, 
        determinable by laboratory methods, also may be guaranteed by 
        permission of the commissioner and with the advice of the 
        director of the agricultural experiment station.  
           (d) If plant nutrients or other substances or compounds are 
        guaranteed, the plant nutrients are subject to inspection and 
        analyses in accord with the methods and rules prescribed by the 
        commissioner. 
           (e) The commissioner may, by rule, require the potential 
        basicity or acidity expressed in terms of calcium carbonate 
        equivalent in multiples of 100 pounds per ton. 
           (f) The plant nutrients in a specialty fertilizer must not 
        be below or exceed the guaranteed analysis by more than the 
        investigational allowances established by rule. 
           Sec. 4.  [18C.60] [PHOSPHOROUS TURF FERTILIZER USE 
        RESTRICTIONS.] 
           Subdivision 1.  [DEFINITIONS.] (a) The definitions in this 
        subdivision apply to this section. 
           (b) "Metropolitan county" means any one of the following 
        counties:  Anoka, Carver, Dakota, Hennepin, Ramsey, Scott, or 
        Washington. 
           (c) "Turf" means noncrop land planted in closely mowed, 
        managed grasses including, but not limited to, residential and 
        commercial residential property, private golf courses, and 
        property owned by federal, state, or local units of government, 
        including parks, recreation areas, and public golf courses.  
        Turf does not mean pasture, hayland, hay, turf grown on turf 
        farms, or any other form of agricultural production. 
           Subd. 2.  [PHOSPHORUS USE RESTRICTIONS.] (a) A person may 
        not apply a fertilizer containing the plant nutrient phosphorus 
        to turf in a metropolitan county, except under conditions listed 
        in paragraph (d). 
           (b) A person may not apply granular fertilizer containing 
        greater than three percent phosphate (P205) by weight, or liquid 
        fertilizer at a rate greater than 0.3 pound phosphate (P205) per 
        1,000 square feet, to turf in a county other than a metropolitan 
        county, except under conditions listed in paragraph (d). 
           (c) A local unit of government in a county other than a 
        metropolitan county may adopt paragraph (a) in place of 
        paragraph (b).  The local unit of government must notify the 
        commissioner of the adoption of paragraph (a) within 30 days of 
        its adoption.  The commissioner shall maintain a list of local 
        units of government in counties other than a metropolitan county 
        that have adopted paragraph (a). 
           (d) Paragraphs (a) and (b) do not apply when: 
           (1) a tissue, soil, or other test by a laboratory or method 
        approved by the commissioner and performed within the last three 
        years indicates that the levels of available phosphorus in the 
        soil is insufficient to support healthy turf growth; 
           (2) the property owner or an agent of the property owner is 
        first establishing turf via seed or sod procedures, and only 
        during the first growing season; or 
           (3) the fertilizer containing the plant food phosphorus is 
        used on a golf course under the direction of a person licensed, 
        certified, or approved by an organization with an ongoing 
        training program approved by the commissioner. 
           (e) Applications of phosphorous fertilizer authorized under 
        paragraph (d), clause (1) or (2), must not exceed rates 
        recommended by the University of Minnesota and approved by the 
        commissioner. 
           Subd. 3.  [CONSUMER INFORMATION.] The commissioner, in 
        consultation with the University of Minnesota extension service, 
        fertilizer industry representatives, lakes groups, and other 
        interested or affected parties, must produce consumer 
        information on use restrictions and recommended best practices 
        for lawn fertilizer containing phosphorus, and on best 
        management practices for other residential sources of phosphorus 
        in the urban landscape.  The information must be in a format and 
        of a content suitable for posting and distribution at retail 
        points of sale of fertilizer that contains phosphorus and is for 
        use on turf. 
           Subd. 4.  [RESEARCH EVALUATION; REPORT.] The commissioner, 
        in cooperation with the University of Minnesota and the 
        University of Minnesota extension service, and, after 
        consultation with representatives of the fertilizer industry, 
        lakes groups, and other interested or affected parties, shall 
        evaluate research needs and encourage targeted research 
        opportunities to investigate the effects of phosphorous 
        fertilization of turf on urban stormwater quality.  The 
        commissioner must evaluate the effectiveness of the restrictions 
        on phosphorous fertilizers under this section and report to the 
        legislature by January 15, 2007. 
           Sec. 5.  [18C.61] [FERTILIZER APPLICATION TO AN IMPERVIOUS 
        SURFACE; PROHIBITION.] 
           (a) A person may not apply a fertilizer to an impervious 
        surface.  Fertilizer released on an impervious surface must be 
        immediately contained and either legally applied to turf or any 
        other legal site, or returned to the original or other 
        appropriate container. 
           (b) For the purposes of this section, "impervious surface" 
        means a highway, street, sidewalk, parking lot, driveway, or 
        other material that prevents infiltration of water into the soil.
           Sec. 6.  [18C.62] [ENFORCEMENT.] 
           Sections 18C.60 and 18C.61 are enforced by local units of 
        government under their existing authority.  Violation of a 
        provision in either of these sections is a petty misdemeanor. 
           Sec. 7.  [EFFECTIVE DATE.] 
           Section 4 is effective January l, 2004. 
           Presented to the governor April 18, 2002 
           Signed by the governor April 19, 2002, 9:45 a.m.