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Office of the Revisor of Statutes

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

                            CHAPTER 327-S.F.No. 1811 
                  An act relating to drainage; allowing transfer of a 
                  public drainage system to a water management 
                  authority; defining water management authority; 
                  amending Minnesota Statutes 2000, section 103E.005, 
                  subdivision 16, by adding a subdivision; proposing 
                  coding for new law in Minnesota Statutes, chapter 103E.
        BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MINNESOTA: 
           Section 1.  Minnesota Statutes 2000, section 103E.005, 
        subdivision 16, is amended to read: 
           Subd. 16.  [MUNICIPALITY.] "Municipality" means a statutory 
        or home rule charter city or a town having urban powers under 
        section 368.01, subdivision 1 or 1a.  For purposes of sections 
        103E.315, 103E.611, and 103E.615, municipality includes a water 
        management authority to which a portion of a drainage system is 
        transferred under section 103E.812. 
           Sec. 2.  Minnesota Statutes 2000, section 103E.005, is 
        amended by adding a subdivision to read: 
           Subd. 29.  [WATER MANAGEMENT AUTHORITY.] "Water management 
        authority" means a county or municipality, watershed district, 
        watershed management organization, storm water management 
        district, lake improvement district, subordinate service 
        district, joint powers organization or other special district 
        organized and formed according to law for the purpose of 
        managing storm, surface, and flood waters, or with the authority 
        to manage storm, surface, and flood waters. 
           Sec. 3.  [103E.812] [TRANSFER OF ALL OR PART OF DRAINAGE 
        SYSTEM.] 
           Subdivision 1.  [DRAINAGE LIEN PAYMENT PERIOD MUST EXPIRE.] 
        After the period originally fixed or subsequently extended to 
        pay the assessment of the drainage lien expires, all or part of 
        a drainage system may be transferred from the jurisdiction of 
        the drainage authority to a water management authority as 
        provided in this section. 
           Subd. 2.  [PETITIONERS.] (a) For drainage systems outside 
        of the seven-county metropolitan area, and outside of the 
        municipal boundaries of a statutory or home rule charter city, a 
        petition must be signed by at least 51 percent of the owners of 
        property assessed for the construction of the drainage system, 
        or portion of the drainage system proposed to be transferred, or 
        by the owners of not less than 51 percent of the area of the 
        property assessed for the drainage system, or portion of the 
        drainage system sought to be transferred.  The water management 
        authority to which the drainage system is to be transferred must 
        join the petition. 
           (b) For drainage systems wholly or partially within the 
        municipal boundaries of a statutory or home rule charter city, 
        the city may petition for transfer if the drainage system or 
        portion of the drainage system proposed to be transferred lies 
        within the boundaries of the city.  The water management 
        authority to which the drainage system is to be transferred must 
        join the petition. 
           (c) For drainage systems within the seven-county 
        metropolitan area and within the jurisdictional boundaries of an 
        existing water management authority, the water management 
        authority may petition for transfer if the drainage system or 
        portion of the drainage system proposed to be transferred lies 
        within the boundaries of the water management authority. 
           (d) For the purpose of the petition, the county is the 
        resident owner of all tax-forfeited property held by the state, 
        under chapter 282, and assessed benefits for the drainage 
        system, and the board may execute the petition for the county as 
        an owner.  This paragraph does not apply to lands acquired by 
        the state under chapter 84A.  
           Subd. 3.  [PETITION.] (a) The petition must designate the 
        drainage system, or portion thereof, proposed to be transferred 
        and show that the transfer is necessary for the orderly 
        management of storm, surface, or flood waters, including 
        management for water quality purposes. 
           (b) The petition must indicate the impact, if any, that the 
        transfer will have on properties utilizing the drainage system 
        for an outlet or otherwise benefiting from the existence of the 
        drainage system. 
           (c) The petition must include an engineering report, 
        prepared by the transferee water management authority, 
        establishing, for the record, the nature and extent of the 
        drainage easement occupied by the drainage system, and the 
        as-constructed, or subsequently improved, depth, grade, and 
        hydraulic capacity of the drainage system. 
           Subd. 4.  [FILING PETITION; JURISDICTION.] (a) If the 
        drainage system is administered by a county or joint county 
        drainage authority and if all property assessed for benefits in 
        the drainage system is in one county, the petition must be filed 
        with the auditor unless the petition is signed by the board, in 
        which case the petition must be made to the district court of 
        the county where the drainage system is located and filed with 
        the court administrator.  If the board, acting as the drainage 
        authority, is also the petitioning water management authority, 
        the petition must be made to the district court of the county 
        where the drainage system is located and filed with the court 
        administrator.  If property assessed for benefits is in two or 
        more counties, the petition must be filed with the auditor or 
        court administrator of either (1) the county where the portion 
        of the drainage system sought to be transferred exists; (2) the 
        county not petitioning for the transfer; or (3) the county where 
        the majority of the drainage system sought to be transferred 
        exists. 
           (b) If the drainage system is administered by the board of 
        managers of a watershed district, the petition must be filed 
        with the secretary of the watershed district.  If the watershed 
        district is also the petitioning water management authority, the 
        petition must be filed with the court administrator consistent 
        with the criteria in paragraph (a), clauses (1) to (3). 
           (c) When the petition is filed, the drainage authority in 
        consultation with the auditor or secretary, or the court 
        administrator with the approval of the court, shall set a time 
        and location for a hearing on the petition.  The auditor, 
        secretary, or court administrator shall give notice by mail and 
        publication of the time and location of the transfer hearing to 
        all persons interested.  The notice shall include a description 
        of the property owner's right to object under subdivision 5.  
        The drainage authority or the district court where the petition 
        is properly filed has jurisdiction of the petition. 
           Subd. 5.  [TRANSFER HEARING.] (a) At the hearing, the 
        drainage authority or court shall examine the petition and 
        determine whether it is sufficient and shall hear all interested 
        parties.  
           (b) If a property owner assessed benefits for the drainage 
        system appears and makes a written objection to the transfer of 
        the drainage system, the drainage authority or court shall 
        appoint a technical panel to examine the drainage system, the 
        property, and the proposed transfer and report to the drainage 
        authority or court.  The hearing must be adjourned to make the 
        examination and report and a date must be set to reconvene.  The 
        technical panel shall consist, at a minimum, of a representative 
        of the drainage authority, a representative of the commissioner, 
        a representative of the soil and water conservation district, a 
        representative of the board of water and soil resources, and a 
        viewer.  The technical panel shall proceed to examine the 
        drainage system, the property, and the property owner's 
        objections to the proposed transfer of the system and report as 
        soon as possible to the drainage authority or court with the 
        merits of the objections.  The technical panel shall also 
        determine the extent to which the transfer of the drainage 
        system will damage or take property.  Nongovernment employee 
        members of the technical panel must be compensated in the same 
        manner as viewers under section 103E.645, subdivision 3.  
           (c) The board of water and soil resources and the 
        commissioner, if requested by the drainage authority or court, 
        shall provide any technical assistance, including engineering, 
        surveys, hydrologic analyses, or water quality studies as 
        requested by the drainage authority or court. 
           (d) When the hearing is reconvened, the drainage authority 
        or court shall consider the technical panel's report and all 
        evidence offered.  If the drainage authority or court determines 
        that storm, surface, or flood waters along the drainage system 
        or within the benefited area of the drainage system, could be 
        better managed by a water management authority, it shall 
        authorize the transfer of the drainage system. 
           Subd. 6.  [COSTS RELATED TO TRANSFER AND TRANSFER 
        PROCEEDINGS.] Costs, including engineering and attorney's fees, 
        related to the proceedings to transfer a drainage system must be 
        paid by the proposed transferee water management authority.  If 
        the drainage authority or court orders that the drainage 
        authority should not be transferred, the drainage authority 
        shall reimburse the water management authority from the drainage 
        system account for the reasonable value of engineering work 
        conducted as part of the transfer proceedings. 
           Subd. 7.  [GUARANTEE OF OUTLET; NO COMPROMISE OF EXISTING 
        RIGHTS.] (a) Any proceeding to transfer all or part of a 
        drainage system to a water management authority must guarantee 
        that all rights to an outlet are preserved for property assessed 
        for benefits on the transferred drainage system of at least 
        equal hydraulic efficiency as the rights to an outlet that 
        existed on the date of transfer. 
           (b) The transfer of a drainage system to a water management 
        authority is not a compromise of any property right held by an 
        owner of assessed property on the transferred drainage system. 
           (c) A water management authority shall compensate any owner 
        of property assessed for benefits on the transferred drainage 
        system for the loss or impairment of any drainage rights 
        occurring after transfer of the drainage system. 
           Subd. 8.  [EFFECT OF TRANSFER.] (a) Except as provided in 
        this section, after transfer of a drainage system, or any part 
        thereof, to a water management authority, the drainage system 
        ceases to be subject to regulation under this chapter except 
        that if only a portion of a drainage system is transferred, the 
        water management authority may be assessed for improvements 
        under section 103E.215 or repairs under sections 103E.701 to 
        103E.711 in the manner provided under sections 103E.315 and 
        103E.601 to 103E.615.  The water management authority may manage 
        water within its jurisdictional boundaries according to whatever 
        law controls the function of the water management authority.  
        The transferred drainage system shall become a work and a 
        responsibility of the transferee water management authority.  
        All responsibility of the drainage authority for the transferred 
        drainage system ends. 
           (b) Activities conducted in the transferred drainage system 
        must continue to be eligible for all exemptions and exceptions 
        available for activities conducted in public drainage systems 
        under sections 103G.2241 and 103G.245. 
           Subd. 9.  [EFFECT ON OTHER LAW.] This section does not 
        amend, supersede, or repeal any existing law providing for the 
        transfer of a drainage system under this chapter, chapter 103D, 
        or other law, but is supplementary to those laws. 
           Presented to the governor April 4, 2002 
           Signed by the governor April 8, 2002, 2:29 p.m.