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2007 Minnesota Session Laws

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CHAPTER 57--S.F.No. 2096

An act

relating to state government; appropriating money for environment, natural resources, energy, and commerce; modifying provisions related to agency service requirements, land acquisition, authorized sales, railroad prairie right-of-ways, county and municipality comprehensive plans, off-highway vehicles, prairie plant seed production, invasive species, state recreation areas, canoe routes, timber sales, mineral payments, wetlands, individual sewage treatment systems, and genetically engineered organisms; providing for venison donation, plant and tree pest control, community forest management, penalty orders, and local water management oversight; modifying disposition of certain revenue; modifying definitions; authorizing and requiring rulemaking; modifying certain license requirements; modifying and establishing certain fees and surcharges; modifying and creating certain accounts and funds; extending sunset of provisions related to sustainable forest resources and the Mineral Coordinating Committee; modifying authority of watershed district managers and soil and water conservation district supervisors; providing for ditch buffers, a clean energy program, environmental health tracking and biomonitoring, regulation of polybrominated diphenyl ethers, classification of state forests, trail designation, forest protection, and lease of certain tax-forfeited land; exempting certain exchanged land from the tax-forfeited land assurance fee; establishing a wildlife management area; designating state energy city; creating energy savings incentive and propane prepurchase programs; modifying provisions for nuclear waste storage, public utilities, cold weather rule, renewable energy research and production incentives, hydrogen energy, the Legislative Electric Energy Task Force, and energy planning; providing for intervenor compensation, low-income affordability programs, clean resource teams, hydrogen refueling station grants, and carbon sequestration studies; providing for certain power producing facilities in St. Paul and Winona; modifying or adding provisions relating to vehicle protection products, debt management services, long-term care insurance training, financial institutions, securities regulation, mortgage originators, and low-income weatherization and energy assistance programs; requiring studies and reports; providing civil penalties;

amending Minnesota Statutes 2006, sections 10A.01, subdivision 35; 13.712, by adding a subdivision; 15.99, subdivision 3; 16A.531, subdivision 1a; 17.4984, subdivision 1; 18G.03, by adding a subdivision; 18G.11; 45.011, subdivision 1; 46.04, subdivision 1; 46.05; 46.131, subdivision 2; 47.19; 47.59, subdivision 6; 47.60, subdivision 2; 47.62, subdivision 1; 47.75, subdivision 1; 48.15, subdivision 4; 58.04, subdivision 1; 58.05; 58.06, subdivision 2, by adding a subdivision; 58.08, subdivision 3; 58.10, subdivision 1; 60K.55, subdivision 2; 80A.28, subdivision 1; 80A.65, subdivision 1; 82.24, subdivisions 1, 4; 82B.09, subdivision 1; 84.025, subdivision 9; 84.026, subdivision 1; 84.027, by adding a subdivision; 84.0272, by adding a subdivision; 84.0855, subdivisions 1, 2; 84.777; 84.780; 84.922, subdivisions 1a, 5; 84.927, subdivision 2; 84.963; 84D.02, by adding a subdivision; 84D.03, subdivision 1; 84D.12, subdivisions 1, 3; 84D.13, subdivision 7; 84D.14; 85.013, by adding a subdivision; 85.054, by adding a subdivision; 85.32, subdivision 1; 86B.706, subdivision 2; 88.01, by adding a subdivision; 88.79, subdivisions 1, 2; 88.82; 89.001, subdivision 8, by adding subdivisions; 89.01, subdivisions 1, 2, 4; 89.22, subdivision 2; 89.51, subdivisions 1, 6, 9; 89.52; 89.53; 89.54; 89.55; 89.56, subdivisions 1, 3; 89.57; 89.58; 89.59; 89.60; 89.61; 89A.11; 90.161, by adding a subdivision; 93.0015, subdivision 3; 93.22, subdivision 1; 97A.045, by adding a subdivision; 97A.055, subdivision 4; 97A.065, by adding a subdivision; 97A.133, by adding a subdivision; 97A.205; 97A.405, subdivision 2; 97A.411, subdivision 1; 97A.451, subdivision 3a; 97A.465, by adding subdivisions; 97A.473, subdivisions 3, 5; 97A.475, subdivisions 3, 7, 11, 12, by adding a subdivision; 97A.485, subdivision 7; 97B.601, subdivision 3; 97B.715, subdivision 1; 97B.801; 97C.081, subdivision 3; 97C.355, subdivision 2; 103B.101, by adding a subdivision; 103C.321, by adding a subdivision; 103D.325, by adding a subdivision; 103E.021, subdivisions 1, 2, 3, by adding a subdivision; 103E.315, subdivision 8; 103E.321, subdivision 1; 103E.701, by adding a subdivision; 103E.705, subdivisions 1, 2, 3; 103E.728, subdivision 2; 103G.222, subdivisions 1, 3; 103G.2241, subdivisions 1, 2, 3, 6, 9, 11; 103G.2242, subdivisions 2, 2a, 9, 12, 15; 103G.2243, subdivision 2; 103G.235; 103G.301, subdivision 2; 115.55, subdivisions 1, 2, 3, by adding a subdivision; 116C.775; 116C.777; 116C.779, subdivision 1; 116C.92; 116C.94, subdivision 1; 116C.97, subdivision 2; 118A.03, subdivision 2; 216B.097, subdivisions 1, 3; 216B.098, subdivision 4; 216B.16, subdivisions 10, 15; 216B.241, subdivision 6; 216B.812, subdivisions 1, 2; 216C.051, subdivisions 2, 9; 216C.052, by adding a subdivision; 216C.41, subdivision 3; 219.99; 239.101, subdivision 3; 282.04, subdivision 1; 325E.311, subdivision 6; 325N.01; 332.54, subdivision 7; 394.23; 462.353, subdivision 2; Laws 2003, chapter 128, article 1, sections 167, subdivision 1, as amended; 169; Laws 2006, chapter 236, article 1, section 21; proposing coding for new law in Minnesota Statutes, chapters 16C; 17; 45; 58; 60K; 84; 84D; 85; 89; 97B; 103B; 103E; 103F; 144; 173; 216B; 216C; 325E; proposing coding for new law as Minnesota Statutes, chapters 59C; 332A; repealing Minnesota Statutes 2006, sections 18G.16; 46.043; 47.62, subdivision 5; 58.08, subdivision 1; 85.012, subdivision 24b; 89.51, subdivision 8; 103G.2241, subdivision 8; 216B.095; 332.12; 332.13; 332.14; 332.15; 332.16; 332.17; 332.18; 332.19; 332.20; 332.21; 332.22; 332.23; 332.24; 332.25; 332.26; 332.27; 332.28; 332.29; Minnesota Rules, parts 7820.1500; 7820.1600; 7820.1700; 7820.1750; 7820.1800; 7820.1900; 7820.2000; 7820.2100; 7820.2150; 7820.2200; 7820.2300.

BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MINNESOTA:

ARTICLE 1

ENVIRONMENT AND NATURAL RESOURCES

Section 1.

SUMMARY OF APPROPRIATIONS.

The amounts shown in this section summarize direct appropriations, by fund, made in this article.

2008 2009 Total
General $ 177,046,000 $ 126,148,000 $ 303,194,000
State Government Special Revenue 48,000 48,000 96,000
Environmental 62,425,000 62,622,000 125,047,000
Natural Resources 82,211,000 82,301,000 164,512,000
Game and Fish 89,988,000 91,947,000 181,935,000
Remediation 11,116,000 11,186,000 22,302,000
Permanent School 200,000 200,000 400,000
Total $ 423,034,000 $ 374,452,000 $ 797,486,000

Sec. 2.

ENVIRONMENT AND NATURAL RESOURCES APPROPRIATIONS.

The sums shown in the columns marked "Appropriations" are appropriated to the agencies and for the purposes specified in this article. The appropriations are from the general fund, or another named fund, and are available for the fiscal years indicated for each purpose. The figures "2008" and "2009" used in this article mean that the appropriations listed under them are available for the fiscal year ending June 30, 2008, or June 30, 2009, respectively. "The first year" is fiscal year 2008. "The second year" is fiscal year 2009. "The biennium" is fiscal years 2008 and 2009. Appropriations for the fiscal year ending June 30, 2007, are effective the day following final enactment.

APPROPRIATIONS
Available for the Year
Ending June 30
2008 2009

Sec. 3.

POLLUTION CONTROL AGENCY

Subdivision 1.

Total Appropriation

$ 117,782,000 $ 86,388,000
Appropriations by Fund
2008 2009
General 44,293,000 12,632,000
State Government Special Revenue 48,000 48,000
Environmental 62,425,000 62,622,000
Remediation 11,016,000 11,086,000

The amounts that may be spent for each purpose are specified in the following subdivisions.

Subd. 2.

Water

58,053,000 26,930,000
Appropriations by Fund
General 38,656,000 7,603,000
State Government Special Revenue 48,000 48,000
Environmental 19,349,000 19,279,000

$2,348,000 the first year and $2,348,000 the second year are for the clean water partnership program. Any balance remaining in the first year does not cancel and is available for the second year. This appropriation may be used for grants to local units of government for the purpose of restoring impaired waters listed under section 303(d) of the federal Clean Water Act in accordance with adopted total maximum daily loads (TMDLs), including implementation of approved clean water partnership diagnostic study work plans that will assist in restoration of impaired waters, in accordance with Minnesota Statutes, chapter 114D.

$2,324,000 the first year and $2,324,000 the second year must be distributed as grants to delegated counties to administer the county feedlot program. Distribution of funds must be as provided in Laws 2005, First Special Session chapter 1, article 2, section 2, subdivision 2. The commissioner, in consultation with the Minnesota Association of County Feedlot Officers executive team, may use up to five percent of the annual appropriation for initiatives to enhance existing delegated county feedlot programs, information and education, or technical assistance to reduce feedlot-related pollution hazards. Any money remaining after the first year is available for the second year.

$335,000 the first year and $335,000 the second year are for community technical assistance and education, including grants and technical assistance to communities for local and basinwide water quality protection.

$405,000 the first year and $405,000 the second year are for individual sewage treatment system (ISTS) administration and grants. Of this amount, $86,000 each year is for assistance to counties through grants for ISTS program administration. Any unexpended balance in the first year does not cancel but is available in the second year.

$480,000 the first year and $480,000 the second year are from the environmental fund to address the need for continued increased activity in the areas of new technology review, technical assistance for local governments, and enforcement under Minnesota Statutes, sections 115.55 to 115.58, and to complete the requirements of Laws 2003, chapter 128, article 1, section 165. Of this amount, $48,000 each year is for administration of individual septic tank fees.

$31,009,000 the first year is to implement the requirements of Minnesota Statutes, chapter 114D. Of this amount, $12,634,000 is for completion of 20 percent of the needed statewide assessments of surface water quality and trends and $18,000,000 is to develop TMDL's and TMDL implementation plans for waters listed on the United States Environmental Protection Agency approved impaired waters list in accordance with Minnesota Statutes, chapter 114D. The agency shall complete an average of ten percent of the TMDL's each year over the biennium. The department shall monitor and analyze endocrine disruptors in surface waters in at least 20 additional sites. The data must be placed on the agency's Web site.

$1,035,000 the first year and $1,035,000 the second year are from the environmental fund to provide regulatory services to the ethanol, mining, and other developing economic sectors. Priority shall be for permitting new and emerging bioenergy crop utilization technologies. This is a onetime appropriation.

$88,000 the first year is for the endocrine disruptors report required to be completed under this article.

The commissioner shall transfer the amount necessary, up to $600,000, from the remediation fund to the commissioner of health to conduct an evaluation under Minnesota Statutes, section 115B.17, of point of use water treatment units at removing perfluorooctanoic acid, perfluorooctane sulfonate, and perfluorobutanoic acid from known concentrations of these compounds in drinking water. The evaluation shall be completed by December 31, 2007, and the commissioner of health may contract for services to complete the evaluation.

By January 15, 2008, the commissioner shall amend agency rules and, where legislative action is necessary, provide recommendations to the house of representatives and senate divisions on environmental finance on water and air fee changes that will result in revenue to the environmental fund to pay for regulatory services to the ethanol, mining, and other developing economic sectors.

Notwithstanding Minnesota Statutes, section 16A.28, the appropriations encumbered under contract on or before June 30, 2009, for clean water partnership, individual sewage treatment systems (ISTS), Minnesota River, total maximum daily loads (TMDL's), stormwater contracts or grants, and local and basinwide water quality protection contracts or grants in this subdivision are available until June 30, 2011.

Subd. 3.

Air

11,003,000 11,270,000
Appropriations by Fund
Environmental 11,003,000 11,270,000

Up to $150,000 the first year and $150,000 the second year may be transferred from the environmental fund to the small business environmental improvement loan account established in Minnesota Statutes, section 116.993.

$200,000 the first year and $200,000 the second year are from the environmental fund for a monitoring program under Minnesota Statutes, section 116.454.

$125,000 the first year and $125,000 the second year are from the environmental fund for monitoring ambient air for hazardous pollutants in the metropolitan area.

$1,140,000 the first year and $1,140,000 the second year are from the environmental fund to provide regulatory services to the ethanol, mining, and other developing economic sectors. Priority shall be for permitting new and emerging bioenergy crop utilization technologies. This is a onetime appropriation.

Subd. 4.

Land

19,081,000 19,151,000
Appropriations by Fund
General 1,000,000 1,000,000
Environmental 7,065,000 7,065,000
Remediation 11,016,000 11,086,000

All money for environmental response, compensation, and compliance in the remediation fund not otherwise appropriated is appropriated to the commissioners of the Pollution Control Agency and agriculture for purposes of Minnesota Statutes, section 115B.20, subdivision 2, clauses (1), (2), (3), (6), and (7). At the beginning of each fiscal year, the two commissioners shall jointly submit an annual spending plan to the commissioner of finance and the house and senate chairs of environment and natural resources finance that maximizes the utilization of resources and appropriately allocates the money between the two departments. This appropriation is available until June 30, 2009.

$3,616,000 the first year and $3,616,000 the second year are from the petroleum tank fund to be transferred to the remediation fund for purposes of the leaking underground storage tank program to protect the land.

$252,000 the first year and $252,000 the second year are from the remediation fund to be transferred to the Department of Health for private water supply monitoring and health assessment costs in areas contaminated by unpermitted mixed municipal solid waste disposal facilities and drinking water advisories and public information activities for areas contaminated by hazardous releases.

$1,000,000 each year is for environmental health tracking and biomonitoring. Of this amount, $900,000 each year is for transfer to the Department of Health. The base appropriation for this program for fiscal year 2010 and later is $500,000.

Subd. 5.

Multimedia

5,872,000 5,215,000
Appropriations by Fund
General 3,006,000 2,349,000
Environmental 2,866,000 2,866,000

$825,000 the first year and $825,000 the second year are from the environmental fund to provide regulatory services to the ethanol, mining, and other developing economic sectors. Priority shall be for permitting new and emerging bioenergy crop utilization technologies. This is a onetime appropriation.

$400,000 the first year is a onetime appropriation for a grant to the Koochiching Economic Development Authority for a feasibility study for a plasma torch gasification facility that converts municipal solid waste into energy and slag.

$300,000 the first year is for the biomass gasification facilities air emissions study for the purpose of fully characterizing the air emissions exerted from biomass gasification facilities across a range of feedstocks. This is a onetime appropriation.

Notwithstanding Minnesota Statutes, section 16A.28, the appropriations encumbered under contract on or before June 30, 2009, for total maximum daily load (TMDL) contracts or grants are available until June 30, 2011.

Subd. 6.

Environmental Assistance

22,142,000 22,142,000

This appropriation is from the environmental fund.

$14,000,000 each year is from the environmental fund for SCORE block grants to counties.

Any unencumbered grant and loan balances in the first year do not cancel but are available for grants and loans in the second year.

All money deposited in the environmental fund for the metropolitan solid waste landfill fee in accordance with Minnesota Statutes, section 473.843, and not otherwise appropriated, is appropriated for the purposes of Minnesota Statutes, section 473.844.

$119,000 the first year and $119,000 the second year are for environmental assistance grants or loans under Minnesota Statutes, section 115A.0716.

$1,200,000 the first year and $1,200,000 the second year are from the environmental fund first to retrofit school buses statewide, including buses for preschool children, and, after completion, secondly for loans to small trucking firms to install equipment to reduce fuel consumption. This is a onetime appropriation.

Notwithstanding Minnesota Statutes, section 16A.28, the appropriations encumbered under contract on or before June 30, 2009, for environmental assistance grants awarded under Minnesota Statutes, section 115A.0716, and for technical and research assistance under Minnesota Statutes, section 115A.152, technical assistance under Minnesota Statutes, section 115A.52, and pollution prevention assistance under Minnesota Statutes, section 115D.04, are available until June 30, 2011.

Subd. 7.

Administrative Support

1,631,000 1,680,000

The commissioner may transfer money from the environmental fund to the remediation fund as necessary for the purposes of the remediation fund under Minnesota Statutes, section 116.155, subdivision 2.

Sec. 4.

NATURAL RESOURCES

Subdivision 1.

Total Appropriation

$ 255,077,000 $ 252,416,000
Appropriations by Fund
2008 2009
General 87,775,000 83,066,000
Natural Resources 77,014,000 77,103,000
Game and Fish 89,988,000 91,947,000
Remediation 100,000 100,000
Permanent School 200,000 200,000

The amounts that may be spent for each purpose are specified in the following subdivisions.

Subd. 2.

Land and Mineral Resources Management

11,747,000 11,272,000
Appropriations by Fund
General 6,633,000 6,230,000
Natural Resources 3,551,000 3,447,000
Game and Fish 1,363,000 1,395,000
Permanent School 200,000 200,000

$475,000 the first year and $475,000 the second year are for iron ore cooperative research. Of this amount, $200,000 each year is from the minerals management account in the natural resources fund and $275,000 each year is from the general fund. $237,500 the first year and $237,500 the second year are available only as matched by $1 of nonstate money for each $1 of state money. The match may be cash or in-kind.

$86,000 the first year and $86,000 the second year are for minerals cooperative environmental research, of which $43,000 the first year and $43,000 the second year are available only as matched by $1 of nonstate money for each $1 of state money. The match may be cash or in-kind.

$2,800,000 the first year and $2,696,000 the second year are from the minerals management account in the natural resources fund for use as provided in Minnesota Statutes, section 93.2236, paragraph (c).

$200,000 the first year and $200,000 the second year are from the state forest suspense account in the permanent school fund to accelerate land exchanges, land sales, and commercial leasing of school trust lands and to identify, evaluate, and lease construction aggregate located on school trust lands. This appropriation is to be used for securing maximum long-term economic return from the school trust lands consistent with fiduciary responsibilities and sound natural resources conservation and management principles.

$15,000 the first year is for a report by February 1, 2008, to the house and senate committees with jurisdiction over environment and natural resources on proposed minimum legal and conservation standards that could be applied to conservation easements acquired with public money.

$1,201,000 the first year and $701,000 the second year are to support the land records management system. Of this amount, $326,000 the first year and $326,000 the second year are from the game and fish fund and $375,000 the first year and $375,000 the second year are from the natural resources fund. The commissioner must report to the legislative chairs on environmental finance on the outcomes of the land records management support.

$500,000 the first year and $500,000 the second year are for land asset management. This is a onetime appropriation.

Subd. 3.

Water Resources Management

15,051,000 12,522,000
Appropriations by Fund
General 14,771,000 12,242,000
Natural Resources 280,000 280,000

$310,000 the first year and $310,000 the second year are for grants associated with the implementation of the Red River mediation agreement.

$65,000 the first year and $65,000 the second year are for a grant to the Mississippi Headwaters Board for up to 50 percent of the cost of implementing the comprehensive plan for the upper Mississippi within areas under its jurisdiction.

$5,000 the first year and $5,000 the second year are for payment to the Leech Lake Band of Chippewa Indians to implement its portion of the comprehensive plan for the upper Mississippi.

$200,000 the first year and $200,000 the second year are for the construction of ring dikes under Minnesota Statutes, section 103F.161. The ring dikes may be publicly or privately owned. If the appropriation in either year is insufficient, the appropriation in the other year is available for it. The base appropriation for fiscal year 2010 and later is $125,000.

$2,250,000 the first year is to support the identification of impaired waters and develop plans to address those impairments, as required by the federal Clean Water Act, in accordance with Minnesota Statutes, chapter 114D. This is a onetime appropriation.

By January 15, 2008, the commissioner shall commence rulemaking under Minnesota Statutes, chapter 14, to update the minimum shoreland standards in Minnesota Rules, chapter 6120.

$60,000 the first year is a onetime appropriation to the commissioner of natural resources to conduct a feasibility study in conjunction with U.S. Army Corps of Engineers on the foundation and hydraulics of the Rapidan Dam in Blue Earth County. This appropriation must be equally matched by Blue Earth County, and is available until expended.

$500,000 in fiscal year 2008 is for addressing surface and groundwater issues related to the development and expansion of ethanol production.

Subd. 4.

Forest Management

44,495,000 43,393,000
Appropriations by Fund
General 24,755,000 24,836,000
Natural Resources 19,483,000 18,293,000
Game and Fish 257,000 264,000

$7,217,000 the first year and $7,217,000 the second year are for prevention, presuppression, and suppression costs of emergency firefighting and other costs incurred under Minnesota Statutes, section 88.12. If the appropriation for either year is insufficient to cover all costs of presuppression and suppression, the amount necessary to pay for these costs during the biennium is appropriated from the general fund.

By November 15 of each year, the commissioner of natural resources shall submit a report to the chairs of the house and senate committees and divisions having jurisdiction over environment and natural resources finance, identifying all firefighting costs incurred and reimbursements received in the prior fiscal year. These appropriations may not be transferred. Any reimbursement of firefighting expenditures made to the commissioner from any source other than federal mobilizations shall be deposited into the general fund.

$17,983,000 the first year and $18,293,000 the second year are from the forest management investment account in the natural resources fund for only the purposes specified in Minnesota Statutes, section 89.039, subdivision 2.

Of this amount:

(1) $750,000 each year is for additional staff to enhance timber sales;

(2) $1,000,000 each year is for forest improvements;

(3) $1,100,000 each year is for forest road maintenance;

(4) $600,000 each year is for the ecological classification system on state forest lands;

(5) $350,000 each year is for the prevention of invasive species on state forest lands; and

(6) $400,000 each year is for the re-inventory of state forest lands.

Money for forest road maintenance is onetime.

$780,000 the first year and $780,000 the second year are for the Forest Resources Council for implementation of the Sustainable Forest Resources Act.

$40,000 the first year is for the Forest Resources Council to provide a grant to the University of Minnesota to prepare a statewide plan to address the fragmentation and parcelization of large blocks of forest land in the state.

$200,000 in fiscal year 2008 is for a grant to the Forest Resources Research Advisory Committee to provide direction on research topics recommended by the governor's task force on the competitiveness of Minnesota's primary forest products industry.

$350,000 the first year and $350,000 the second year are for the FORIST timber management information system, other information systems, and for increased forestry management. The amount in the second year is also available in the first year.

$257,000 the first year and $264,000 the second year are from the game and fish fund to implement ecological classification systems (ECS) standards on forested landscapes. This appropriation is from revenue deposited in the game and fish fund under Minnesota Statutes, section 297A.94, paragraph (e), clause (1).

$110,000 the first year is to develop and implement a statewide information and education campaign regarding the statewide ban on the transport, storage, or use of nonapproved firewood on state-administered lands.

$1,500,000 the first year is from the forest management investment account in the natural resources fund for the purposes of section 158. This is a onetime appropriation.

$75,000 the first year is to the Forest Resources Council for a task force on forest protection and $75,000 the second year is appropriated to the commissioner for grants to cities, counties, townships, special recreation areas, and park and recreation boards in cities of the first class for the identification, removal, disposal, and replacement of dead or dying shade trees lost to forest pests or disease. For purposes of this section, "shade tree" means a woody perennial grown primarily for aesthetic or environmental purposes with minimal to residual timber value. The commissioner shall consult with municipalities; park and recreation boards in cities of the first class; nonprofit organizations; and other interested parties in developing eligibility criteria. * (The preceding text beginning "$75,000 the first year" was indicated as vetoed by the governor.)

$200,000 in fiscal year 2008 is for a grant to the Natural Resources Research Institute for silvicultural research to improve the quality and quantity of timber fiber. The appropriation must be matched in the amount of $200,000 in cash or in-kind contributions from the forest products industry members of the Minnesota Forest Productivity Research Cooperative.

$1,000,000 the first year and $1,000,000 the second year are to support additional technical and cost-share assistance to nonindustrial private forest (NIPF) landowners. The base appropriation in fiscal year 2010 and later is $500,000.

$200,000 the first year and $200,000 the second year are to address escalating land asset management demands, such as boundary disputes, access easements, and sale, exchange, and acquisition of forest lands.

Subd. 5.

Parks and Recreation Management

35,324,000 36,319,000
Appropriations by Fund
General 20,743,000 21,283,000
Natural Resources 14,581,000 15,036,000

$640,000 the first year and $640,000 the second year are from the water recreation account in the natural resources fund for state park water access projects.

$150,000 in the first year and $150,000 in the second year are for additional interpretative services.

$3,996,000 the first year and $3,996,000 the second year are from the natural resources fund for state park and recreation area operations. This appropriation is from the revenue deposited in the natural resources fund under Minnesota Statutes, section 297A.94, paragraph (e), clause (2).

$10,000 in the first year is for payment of expenses of the Cuyuna Country State Recreation Area Citizens Advisory Council. * (The preceding text beginning "$10,000 in the first year" was indicated as vetoed by the governor.)

The appropriation in Laws 2003, chapter 128, article 1, section 5, subdivision 6, from the water recreation account in the natural resources fund for a cooperative project with the United States Army Corps of Engineers to develop the Mississippi Whitewater Park is available until June 30, 2009. The project must be designed to prevent the spread of aquatic invasive species.

$500,000 the first year and $750,000 the second year are from the natural resources fund for increased park maintenance work, resource management projects, and conservation education for park users.

Subd. 6.

Trails and Waterways Management

30,257,000 30,492,000
Appropriations by Fund
General 2,538,000 2,568,000
Natural Resources 25,600,000 25,730,000
Game and Fish 2,119,000 2,194,000

$8,424,000 the first year and $8,424,000 the second year are from the snowmobile trails and enforcement account in the natural resources fund for snowmobile grants-in-aid. The additional money under this item may be used for new grant-in-aid trails. Any unencumbered balance does not cancel at the end of the first year and is available for the second year.

$1,175,000 the first year and $1,325,000 the second year are from the natural resources fund for off-highway vehicle grants-in-aid. Of this amount, $825,000 the first year and $1,075,000 the second year are from the all-terrain vehicle account; $150,000 each year is from the off-highway motorcycle account; and $200,000 the first year and $100,000 the second year are from the off-road vehicle account. Any unencumbered balance does not cancel at the end of the first year and is available for the second year.

$261,000 the first year and $261,000 the second year are from the water recreation account in the natural resources fund for a safe harbor program on Lake Superior.

$742,000 the first year and $760,000 the second year are from the natural resources fund for state trail operations and maintenance. The money may be used for trail maintenance, signage, mapping, interpretation, native prairie restoration using best management practices, and maintenance of nonmotorized forest trails. This appropriation is from the revenue deposited in the natural resources fund under Minnesota Statutes, section 297A.94, paragraph (e), clause (2).

$655,000 the first year and $655,000 the second year are from the natural resources fund for trail grants to local units of government on land to be maintained for at least 20 years for the purposes of the grant. This appropriation is from the revenue deposited in the natural resources fund under Minnesota Statutes, section 297A.94, paragraph (e), clause (4).

$150,000 the first year and $150,000 the second year are from the all-terrain vehicle account for two all-terrain vehicle trail specialists to assist and consult with on all-terrain vehicle grant-in-aid education and training for sustainable trail development and maintenance, as well as providing training for public and private sector trail monitoring. The specialists may assist in the evaluation of grant-in-aid trail proposals, but not in the promotion of new trails.

$1,965,000 the first year and $2,040,000 the second year are from the game and fish fund for expenditures on water access sites according to the requirements of the federal sport and fish restoration program.

Money appropriated under Laws 2005, First Special Session chapter 1, article 2, section 11, subdivision 6, paragraph (h), for the Paul Bunyan State Trail connection is available until June 30, 2008.

$400,000 each year is for operation and maintenance of nonmotorized trails within state forests. This is a onetime appropriation.

$75,000 each year is for additional wild and scenic rivers program activities.

$120,000 the first year is from the water recreation account in the natural resources fund to cooperate with local units of government in marking routes and designating river accesses and campsites under Minnesota Statutes, section 85.32. This is a onetime appropriation and available until spent.

The appropriation in Laws 2005, First Special Session chapter 1, article 2, section 3, subdivision 6, from the lottery in lieu account in the natural resources fund for trail grants to local units of government, is available until June 30, 2009.

Subd. 7.

Fish and Wildlife Management

67,191,000 68,533,000
Appropriations by Fund
General 3,459,000 3,479,000
Natural Resources 1,876,000 1,876,000
Game and Fish 61,856,000 63,178,000

$410,000 the first year and $418,000 the second year are for resource population surveys in the 1837 treaty area. Of this amount, $274,000 the first year and $288,000 the second year are from the game and fish fund.

$1,790,000 the first year and $1,790,000 the second year are from the wildlife acquisition surcharge account for only the purposes of land costs as specified in Minnesota Statutes, section 97A.071, subdivision 2a. This appropriation is available until spent.

$8,061,000 the first year and $8,167,000 the second year are from the heritage enhancement account in the game and fish fund only for activities that improve, enhance, or protect fish and wildlife resources as specified in Minnesota Statutes, section 297A.94, paragraph (e), clause (1). Notwithstanding Minnesota Statutes, section 297A.94, money under this paragraph may be used for expanding hunter and angler recruitment and retention and public land user facilities. Of this amount, $1,175,000 each year is for preserving, restoring, and enhancing grassland/wetland complexes.

Notwithstanding Minnesota Statutes, section 84.943, $13,000 the first year and $13,000 the second year from the critical habitat private sector matching account may be used to publicize the critical habitat license plate match program.

$830,000 the first year and $830,000 the second year are from the trout and salmon management account for only the purposes specified in Minnesota Statutes, section 97A.075, subdivision 3.

$1,353,000 the first year and $1,353,000 the second year are from the deer habitat improvement account for only the purposes specified in Minnesota Statutes, section 97A.075, subdivision 1, paragraph (b).

$715,000 the first year and $715,000 the second year are from the deer and bear management account for only the purposes specified in Minnesota Statutes, section 97A.075, subdivision 1, paragraph (c).

$700,000 the first year and $700,000 the second year are from the waterfowl habitat improvement account for only the purposes specified in Minnesota Statutes, section 97A.075, subdivision 2.

$875,000 the first year and $875,000 the second year are from the pheasant habitat improvement account for only the purposes specified in Minnesota Statutes, section 97A.075, subdivision 4.

$172,000 the first year and $172,000 the second year are from the wild turkey management account for only the purposes specified in Minnesota Statutes, section 97A.075, subdivision 5. Of this amount, $8,000 the first year and $8,000 the second year are appropriated from the game and fish fund for transfer to the wild turkey management account for purposes specified in Minnesota Statutes, section 97A.075, subdivision 5.

$108,000 the first year and $108,000 the second year are from the game and fish fund for costs associated with administering fishing contest permits.

$186,000 the first year and $132,000 the second year are to accelerate wildlife health programs. $54,000 in the first year is for fencing cattle-feeding areas in bovine tuberculosis control zones, under the emergency deterrent materials assistance program in Minnesota Statutes, section 97A.028, subdivision 3. This appropriation is available until June 30, 2009. $61,000 of this amount is permanent.

$575,000 the first year and $575,000 the second year are for preserving, restoring, and enhancing grassland/wetland complexes on public or private lands.

The commissioner must report to the legislative chairs on environmental finance for money appropriated in this subdivision on grassland/wetland complexes with specific outcomes, including acres of wetlands and prairie grasses and forbs of a local ecotype preserved, restored, and enhanced during the 2008-2009 biennium.

$150,000 the first year and $150,000 the second year are from the game and fish fund for the roadsides for wildlife program.

$175,000 in the first year and $175,000 in the second year are for grants to Let's Go Fishing of Minnesota to promote opportunities for fishing. The grants must be matched with cash or in-kind contributions from nonstate sources. It is a condition of acceptance of this appropriation that Let's Go Fishing of Minnesota must submit a work program and annual progress reports in the form and manner determined by the commissioner of natural resources to the Budgetary Oversight Committee. The work program must identify capital expenditures and leases over $2,000 and annual reports must describe the use of that capital equipment throughout its useful life. None of the money provided may be spent unless the commissioner has approved the work program. This is a onetime appropriation.

$90,000 each year from the game and fish fund is to staff the Budgetary Oversight Committee.

By November 15, 2008, the commissioner, in consultation with the Budgetary Oversight Committee, established in Minnesota Statutes, section 97A.055, subdivision 4b, paragraph (c), shall report to the house of representatives and senate policy and finance committees and divisions with jurisdiction over natural resources on game and fish fund receipt and expenditure imbalances between hunting-related and fishing-related activities. The report shall include, but is not limited to:

(1) a table showing the allocation of game and fish fund receipts and expenditures related to fishing and hunting activities for fiscal years 1989 to 2007 and projected receipts and expenditures for fiscal years 2008 and 2009;

(2) recommendations for short-term changes to correct any imbalances; and

(3) recommendations for long-term changes that will ensure that fishing license revenue is adequate to cover fishing-related expenditures and hunting license revenue is adequate to cover hunting-related expenditures.

Notwithstanding Minnesota Statutes, section 16A.28, the appropriations encumbered under contract on or before June 30, 2009, for aquatic restoration grants and wildlife habitat grants are available until June 30, 2010.

The commissioner of finance shall transfer $160,000 in fiscal year 2008 to the special revenue fund for the account under Minnesota Statutes, section 97A.065, subdivision 6.

Subd. 8.

Ecological Services

16,175,000 14,476,000
Appropriations by Fund
General 8,597,000 6,531,000
Natural Resources 3,696,000 3,994,000
Game and Fish 3,882,000 3,951,000

$1,194,000 the first year and $1,227,000 the second year are from the nongame wildlife management account in the natural resources fund for the purpose of nongame wildlife management.

Notwithstanding Minnesota Statutes, section 290.431, $100,000 the first year and $100,000 the second year may be used for nongame information, education, and promotion.

$1,612,000 the first year and $1,636,000 the second year are from the heritage enhancement account in the game and fish fund for only the purposes specified in Minnesota Statutes, section 297A.94, paragraph (e), clause (1).

The commissioner must report to the legislative chairs on environmental finance for money appropriated in this subdivision on grassland/wetland complexes with specific outcomes, including acres of wetlands and prairie grasses and forbs of a local ecotype preserved, restored, and enhanced during the 2008-2009 biennium.

$2,938,000 in the first year and $4,385,000 in the second year, of which $1,968,000 the first year and $2,195,000 the second year are from the invasive species account in the natural resources fund for law enforcement and water access inspection to prevent the spread of invasive species, grants to manage invasive plants in public waters, technical assistance to grant applicants for improving lake quality, and management of terrestrial invasive species on state-administered lands. Priority shall be given to preventing the spread of aquatic invertebrates, including, but not limited to, zebra mussels, spiny waterflea, and round goby. An applicant for a grant to manage invasive plants in public waters must have a workable plan for improving water quality and reducing the need for additional treatment. Grants may not be made for chemicals that are likely endocrine disruptors. A plan to prevent the introduction of asian carp into Minnesota waters must be made available to the public by November 1, 2007.

$125,000 the first year is to support a technical advisory committee and for land management units that manage grass lands in order to develop plans to optimize native prairie seed harvest and replanting on state-owned lands. The work must use best management practices with an outcome of ensuring the survival of the native prairie remaining in Minnesota and to estimate the value of the seeds. Maximizing seed harvest may include allowing seed producers to keep a portion of the seed as compensation for supplying equipment and labor. The Department of Natural Resources in cooperation with the Department of Agriculture and the Board of Water and Soil Resources shall establish the technical advisory committee which has the expertise to develop (1) criteria to identify public and private marginal lands which could be used to produce native prairie seeds of a local eco-type or restore native prairies that could be used to produce clean energy, (2) guidelines for production that ensure high carbon sequestration, protection of wildlife and waters, and minimization of inputs and that do not compromise the survival of the native prairie remaining in Minnesota, and (3) recommendations for incentives that will result in the production of native prairie seeds of a local eco-type or restore native prairies. In addition to agency members, the advisory committee shall have one member from each of two statewide farm organizations, one member from a statewide sustainable farmer organization, one member each from three statewide rural economic development organizations, one member each from three statewide environmental organizations, and one member each from three statewide wildlife or conservation organizations. No person registered as a lobbyist under Minnesota Statutes, section 10A.03, may serve on the technical advisory committee. The technical committee shall work with the NextGen Energy Board to develop a clean energy program. A report on outcomes from the technical committee is due December 15, 2007, to the legislative finance chairs on environment and natural resources.

$50,000 in the first year is for the commissioner, in consultation with the Environmental Quality Board, to report to the house and senate committees having jurisdiction over environmental policy and finance by February 1, 2008, on the Mississippi River critical area program. The report shall include the status of critical area plans, zoning ordinances, the number and types of revisions anticipated, and the nature and number of variances sought. The report shall include recommendations that adequately protect and manage the aesthetic integrity and natural environment of the river corridor.

$2,250,000 the first year is to support the identification of impaired waters and develop plans to address those impairments, as required by the federal Clean Water Act, in accordance with Minnesota Statutes, chapter 114D. This is a onetime appropriation.

$477,000 the first year and $477,000 the second year are for the reinvest in Minnesota programs of game and fish, critical habitat, and wetlands established under Minnesota Statutes, section 84.95, subdivision 2.

$350,000 the first year is for a grant to the International Wolf Center for building renovations.

$500,000 the first year is for a grant to the city of Wabasha for programming at the National Bald Eagle Center.

$100,000 the first year is for a grant to the Wildlife Rehabilitation Center of Minnesota to retire loans incurred by the center for construction of its facility in the city of Roseville and to complete educational technology infrastructure at the center.

$115,000 in the first year and $116,000 in the second year is for the Project Wild program. Of this amount, $35,000 in the first year and $36,000 in the second year are from the natural resources fund, and $40,000 in the first year and $40,000 in the second year are from the game and fish fund.

$150,000 each year is from the all-terrain vehicle account in the natural resources fund for developing and maintaining all-terrain vehicle trails and environmental review.

Subd. 9.

Enforcement

30,549,000 31,596,000
Appropriations by Fund
General 3,564,000 3,648,000
Natural Resources 7,463,000 7,963,000
Game and Fish 19,422,000 19,885,000
Remediation 100,000 100,000

Until June 30, 2009, a conservation officer must be stationed at Mississippi Headwaters State Forest to work with local jurisdictions in enforcing state law along the Mississippi River from Lake Itasca downstream to Lake Bemidji and in the Bemidji region.

$1,082,000 the first year and $1,082,000 the second year are from the water recreation account in the natural resources fund for grants to counties for boat and water safety.

$100,000 the first year and $100,000 the second year are from the remediation fund for solid waste enforcement activities under Minnesota Statutes, section 116.073.

$315,000 the first year and $315,000 the second year are from the snowmobile trails and enforcement account in the natural resources fund for grants to local law enforcement agencies for snowmobile enforcement activities.

$1,164,000 the first year and $1,164,000 the second year are from the heritage enhancement account in the game and fish fund for only activities that improve, enhance, or protect fish and wildlife resources specified in Minnesota Statutes, section 297A.94, paragraph (e), clause (1).

Overtime must be distributed to conservation officers at historical levels; however, a reasonable reduction or addition may be made to the officer's allocation, if justified, based on an individual officer's workload. If funding for enforcement is reduced because of an unallotment, the overtime bank may be reduced in proportion to reductions made in other areas of the budget.

$325,000 the first year and $325,000 the second year are from the natural resources fund for grants to county law enforcement agencies for off-highway vehicle enforcement and public education activities based on off-highway vehicle use in the county. Of this amount, $313,000 each year is from the all-terrain vehicle account; $11,000 each year is from the off-highway motorcycle account; and $1,000 each year is from the off-road vehicle account. The county enforcement agencies may use money received under this appropriation to make grants to other local enforcement agencies within the county that have a high concentration of off-highway vehicle use. Of this appropriation, $25,000 each year is for administration of these grants.

$250,000 the first year and $250,000 the second year are from the all-terrain vehicle account for grants to qualifying organizations to assist in safety and environmental education and monitoring trails on public lands under new Minnesota Statutes, section 84.9011. Grants issued under this paragraph: (1) must be issued through a formal agreement with the organization; and (2) must not be used as a substitute for traditional spending by the organization. By December 15, each year, an organization receiving a grant under this paragraph shall report to the commissioner with details on expenditures from the grant. Of this appropriation, $25,000 each year is for administration of these grants.

The commissioner must publicize opportunities for conservation officer employment and recruit, when possible, conservation officer candidates from the biological sciences departments at colleges and universities.

Subd. 10.

Operations Support

4,288,000 3,813,000
Appropriations by Fund
General 2,715,000 2,249,000
Natural Resources 484,000 484,000
Game and Fish 1,089,000 1,080,000

$38,000 in the first year is from the game and fish fund for the study on the natural stands of wild rice required in this article.

$270,000 the first year and $270,000 the second year are from the natural resources fund for grants to be divided equally between the city of St. Paul for the Como Zoo and Conservatory and the city of Duluth for the Duluth Zoo. This appropriation is from the revenue deposited to the fund under Minnesota Statutes, section 297A.94, paragraph (e), clause (5).

$55,000 in the first year and $7,000 in the second year are to be transferred to the Environmental Quality Board to fulfill the requirement of Minnesota Statutes, sections 116C.92 and 116C.94.

$475,000 the first year is a onetime appropriation for terrestrial and geologic carbon sequestration reports and studies in this article. Of this amount, the commissioner shall make payments of $385,000 to the Board of Regents of the University of Minnesota for the purposes of terrestrial carbon sequestration activities, and $90,000 to the Minnesota Geological Survey for the purposes of geologic carbon sequestration assessment.

Sec. 5.

BOARD OF WATER AND SOIL RESOURCES

$ 32,153,000 $ 17,482,000

$4,102,000 the first year and $4,102,000 the second year are for natural resources block grants to local governments. The board may reduce the amount of the natural resources block grant to a county by an amount equal to any reduction in the county's general services allocation to a soil and water conservation district from the county's previous year allocation when the board determines that the reduction was disproportionate. Grants must be matched with a combination of local cash or in-kind contributions. The base grant portion related to water planning must be matched by an amount that would be raised by a levy under Minnesota Statutes, section 103B.3369.

$3,566,000 the first year and $3,566,000 the second year are for grants requested by soil and water conservation districts for general purposes, nonpoint engineering, and implementation of the reinvest in Minnesota conservation reserve program. Upon approval of the board, expenditures may be made from these appropriations for supplies and services benefiting soil and water conservation districts. Any district requesting a grant under this paragraph shall create and maintain a Web page that publishes, at a minimum, its annual plan, annual report, annual audit, and annual budget, including membership dues and meeting notices and minutes.

$3,285,000 the first year and $3,285,000 the second year are for grants to soil and water conservation districts for cost-sharing contracts for erosion control and water quality management. Of this amount, at least $1,200,000 the first year and $1,200,000 the second year are for grants for cost-sharing contracts to establish and maintain vegetation buffers of restored native prairie and restored prairie using seeds of a local ecotype region. $300,000 the first year and $300,000 the second year are available to begin county cooperative weed management programs on natural lands and private lands enrolled in state and federal conservation programs and to restore native plants in selected invasive species management sites by providing local native seeds and plants to landowners for implementation. This appropriation is available until expended. If the appropriation in either year is insufficient, the appropriation in the other year is available for it. Notwithstanding Minnesota Statutes, section 103C.501, any balance in the board's cost-share program that remains from the fiscal year 2007 appropriation is available in an amount up to $2,000 for a grant to the Faribault Soil and Water Conservation District to pay for erosion repair on the Blue Earth River, and up to $40,000 is available for grants to soil and water conservation districts for Web site development and reporting; and $100,000 in fiscal years 2008 and 2009 is for evaluating and reporting on performance, financial, and activity information of local water management entities as provided for in section 104.

The board shall develop a forestry practice docket for cost-share money. The board shall develop standards or policies for cost-share practices for the following purposes: (1) establishment and maintenance of vegetated buffers of restored prairie or restored native prairie using seeds of a local ecotype; (2) establishment of cooperative weed management programs on private natural lands and lands enrolled in state and federal conservation programs and restoration of native plants in selected invasive species management sites by providing local native seeds and plants to landowners; and (3) establishment of soil and water conservation and ecological improvement practices on private forest lands.

$100,000 the first year and $100,000 the second year are for a grant to the Red River Basin Commission to develop a Red River basin plan and to coordinate water management activities in the states and provinces bordering the Red River. The unencumbered balance in the first year does not cancel but is available for the second year.

$14,166,000 is for implementation of the Clean Water Legacy Act, in accordance with Minnesota Statutes, chapter 114D, as follows:

(1) $3,316,000 is for targeted nonpoint restoration cost-share and incentive payments, of which up to $3,116,000 is available for grants. Of this amount, $1,500,000 is for agricultural watershed restoration projects that are located in a watershed impaired by nonpoint agricultural sources and are designed to provide long-term restoration of surface water quality through restoration of the natural hydrological function to working lands. Of this amount, $500,000 must be contracted for services with the Minnesota Conservation Corps. The grant funds are available until expended;

(2) $3,000,000 is for targeted nonpoint restoration and protection and technical, compliance, and engineering assistance activities, of which up to $2,400,000 is available for grants, and $225,000 the first year is to inventory wetland mitigation opportunities and water quality and watershed improvement projects in a greater than 80 percent area and of which $150,000 the first year is to conduct a regionwide wetland mitigation siting analysis for greater than 80 percent areas. The $225,000 amount shall include an inventory of the wetland and water resources that have been developed on former mine lands and an analysis of the functions and values of those wetland and water resources. This is a onetime appropriation and is available until June 30, 2009. The $150,000 amount for analysis shall (i) evaluate wetland mitigation opportunities in each watershed and wetland bank service area, (ii) develop goals for maintaining water quality in the greater than 80 percent areas, and (iii) identify wetland mitigation opportunities in other regions with a greater loss of wetlands or with impaired waters. This is a onetime appropriation and is available until June 30, 2009. A report on the analysis outcomes shall be given to the house and senate chairs of the environment and natural resources policy and finance committees by January 15, 2009;

(3) $400,000 is for reporting and evaluating applied soil and water conservation practices;

(4) $2,450,000 is for grants to implement county individual sewage treatment system programs. Of this amount, after a county has complied with requirements to adopt ordinances pursuant to Minnesota Statutes, section 115.55, subdivision 2, the county may request grants of up to $130,000 to inventory properties with individual sewage treatment systems that are an imminent threat to public health or safety due to water discharges of untreated sewage, and require compliance under an applicable ordinance. The grant amount shall be proportional to the number of properties expected to be inventoried. Each county receiving an appropriation under this paragraph shall report the number of inspections and the number determined to be an imminent threat to public health or safety to the Pollution Control Agency by February 1 of each year;

(5) $3,000,000 is for feedlot water quality grants for feedlots under 300 animal units where there are impaired waters;

(6) $1,000,000 in fiscal year 2008 is for grants to support local nonpoint source protection activities related to lake and river protection and management; and

(7) $1,000,000 in fiscal year 2008 is for grants to address imminent threat and failing individual sewage treatment systems.

If the appropriations in clauses (1) to (7) in either year are insufficient, the appropriation in the other year is available for it. All of the money appropriated in clauses (1) to (7) as grants to local governments shall be administered through the Board of Water and Soil Resources' local water resources protection and management program under Minnesota Statutes, section 103B.3369.

$100,000 each year is to the Minnesota River Basin Joint Powers Board, also known as the Minnesota River Board, for operating expenses to measure and report the results of projects in the 12 major watersheds within the Minnesota River basin.

By January 1, 2008, the board shall report to the senate and house of representatives environmental finance divisions on the financial needs to bring all feedlots in the state that are under 300 animal units into compliance with Pollution Control Agency rules by October 1, 2010, and comply with the requirements of Minnesota Statutes, section 116.07, subdivision 7, paragraph (p).

$140,000 the first year and $140,000 the second year are for a grant to Area II, Minnesota River Basin Projects, for floodplain management, including administration of programs.

$1,120,000 the first year and $1,060,000 the second year may be spent for the following purposes to support implementation of the Wetland Conservation Act: $250,000 each year is to make grants to local units of governments within the 11-county metropolitan area to improve response to major wetland violations; $250,000 each year is for transfer to the commissioner of natural resources for enforcement of wetland violations; $500,000 each year is for staffing to provide adequate state oversight and technical support to local governments administering the Wetland Conservation Act; $60,000 each year is for staff to monitor and enforce wetland replacement and wetland bank sites; and $60,000 the first year is for rulemaking required by changes to the Wetland Conservation Act. The board must include in its biennial report to the legislature information on all state and local units of government, including special purpose districts, impacts on wetlands in the state.

$450,000 the first year and $800,000 the second year are to implement recommendations of the Drainage Work Group to enhance public drainage and modernization as follows: $150,000 the first year is to develop guidelines for drainage records preservation and modernization; $500,000 the second year is for cost-share grants to local governments for public drainage records modernization; and $300,000 each year is to provide assistance to local drainage management officials, to facilitate the work of the Drainage Work Group, to staff a drainage assistance team, and to update the Minnesota Public Drainage Manual. All of the money appropriated in this paragraph as grants to local governments shall be administered through the Board of Water and Soil Resources' local water resources protection and management program under Minnesota Statutes, section 103B.3369.

In addition to other authorities, the Board of Water and Soil Resources may reduce, withhold, or redirect grants and other funding if the local water management entity has not corrected deficiencies as prescribed in a notice from the board within one year from the date of the notice.

$500,000 the first year is to provide grants for bioenergy crop research and monitoring, including, but not limited to, water quality, water quantity utilized, soil carbon storage, biological diversity, wildlife and habitat impacts and benefits, and small diameter woody bioenergy. Of this amount, $300,000 is for a grant to the Minnesota Forest Resources Council for conducting site level ecological research and assessments as identified by the council's biomass technical committee. Additional money from other sources should be sought to accomplish this purpose.

$200,000 in fiscal year 2008 is to develop clean energy program guidelines and standards.

$200,000 is for a grant to the city of Gaylord to construct and reconstruct storm water sewer drains and related facilities to divert water that currently drains into Lake Titlow into holding ponds south of the city. The cost of reconstructing city streets as part of this diversion, and as outlined in the city of Gaylord's street improvement plan, is the responsibility of the city. This diversion will keep phosphorus and other chemicals from entering the lake, and will improve the water quality of Lake Titlow. * (The preceding text beginning "$200,000 is for a grant" was indicated as vetoed by the governor.)

The appropriations for grants in this section are available until expended. If an appropriation for grants in either year is insufficient, the appropriation in the other year is available for it.

Sec. 6.

METROPOLITAN COUNCIL

$ 8,620,000 $ 8,620,000
Appropriations by Fund
2008 2009
General 4,050,000 4,050,000
Natural Resources 4,570,000 4,570,000

$4,050,000 the first year and $4,050,000 the second year are for metropolitan area regional parks maintenance and operations.

$4,570,000 the first year and $4,570,000 the second year are from the natural resources fund for metropolitan area regional parks and trails maintenance and operations. This appropriation is from the revenue deposited in the natural resources fund under Minnesota Statutes, section 297A.94, paragraph (e), clause (3).

Sec. 7.

MINNESOTA CONSERVATION CORPS

$ 1,015,000 $ 965,000
Appropriations by Fund
2008 2009
General 525,000 475,000
Natural Resources 490,000 490,000

The Minnesota Conservation Corps may receive money appropriated from the natural resources fund under this section only as provided in an agreement with the commissioner of natural resources.

$50,000 is to be used for learning stipends for deaf students and wages for interpreters participating in its summer youth program. The appropriation is available until June 30, 2009.

Sec. 8.

ZOOLOGICAL BOARD

$ 7,137,000 $ 7,331,000
Appropriations by Fund
2008 2009
General 7,000,000 7,193,000
Natural Resources 137,000 138,000

$137,000 the first year and $138,000 the second year are from the natural resources fund from the revenue deposited under Minnesota Statutes, section 297A.94, paragraph (e), clause (5).

The general fund base budget for the Zoological Board is $7,068,000 each year in the 2010-2011 biennium.

Sec. 9.

SCIENCE MUSEUM OF MINNESOTA

$ 1,250,000 $ 1,250,000

Sec. 10.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 10A.01, subdivision 35, is amended to read:

Subd. 35.

Public official.

"Public official" means any:

(1) member of the legislature;

(2) individual employed by the legislature as secretary of the senate, legislative auditor, chief clerk of the house, revisor of statutes, or researcher, legislative analyst, or attorney in the Office of Senate Counsel and Research or House Research;

(3) constitutional officer in the executive branch and the officer's chief administrative deputy;

(4) solicitor general or deputy, assistant, or special assistant attorney general;

(5) commissioner, deputy commissioner, or assistant commissioner of any state department or agency as listed in section 15.01 or 15.06, or the state chief information officer;

(6) member, chief administrative officer, or deputy chief administrative officer of a state board or commission that has either the power to adopt, amend, or repeal rules under chapter 14, or the power to adjudicate contested cases or appeals under chapter 14;

(7) individual employed in the executive branch who is authorized to adopt, amend, or repeal rules under chapter 14 or adjudicate contested cases under chapter 14;

(8) executive director of the State Board of Investment;

(9) deputy of any official listed in clauses (7) and (8);

(10) judge of the Workers' Compensation Court of Appeals;

(11) administrative law judge or compensation judge in the State Office of Administrative Hearings or referee in the Department of Employment and Economic Development;

(12) member, regional administrator, division director, general counsel, or operations manager of the Metropolitan Council;

(13) member or chief administrator of a metropolitan agency;

(14) director of the Division of Alcohol and Gambling Enforcement in the Department of Public Safety;

(15) member or executive director of the Higher Education Facilities Authority;

(16) member of the board of directors or president of Minnesota Technology, Inc.;

(17) member of the board of directors or executive director of the Minnesota State High School League;

(18) member of the Minnesota Ballpark Authority established in section 473.755; or

(19) citizen member of the Legislative-Citizen Commission on Minnesota Resources.;

(20) manager of a watershed district, or member of a watershed management organization as defined under section 103B.205, subdivision 13; or

(21) supervisor of a soil and water conservation district.

Sec. 11.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 15.99, subdivision 3, is amended to read:

Subd. 3.

Application; extensions.

(a) The time limit in subdivision 2 begins upon the agency's receipt of a written request containing all information required by law or by a previously adopted rule, ordinance, or policy of the agency, including the applicable application fee. If an agency receives a written request that does not contain all required information, the 60-day limit starts over only if the agency sends written notice within 15 business days of receipt of the request telling the requester what information is missing.

(b) If a request relating to zoning, septic systems, watershed district review, soil and water conservation district review, or expansion of the metropolitan urban service area requires the approval of more than one state agency in the executive branch, the 60-day period in subdivision 2 begins to run for all executive branch agencies on the day a request containing all required information is received by one state agency. The agency receiving the request must forward copies to other state agencies whose approval is required.

(c) An agency response, including an approval with conditions, meets the 60-day time limit if the agency can document that the response was sent within 60 days of receipt of the written request. Failure to satisfy the conditions, if any, may be a basis to revoke or rescind the approval by the agency and will not give rise to a claim that the 60-day limit was not met.

(d) The time limit in subdivision 2 is extended if a state statute, federal law, or court order requires a process to occur before the agency acts on the request, and the time periods prescribed in the state statute, federal law, or court order make it impossible to act on the request within 60 days. In cases described in this paragraph, the deadline is extended to 60 days after completion of the last process required in the applicable statute, law, or order. Final approval of an agency receiving a request is not considered a process for purposes of this paragraph.

(e) The time limit in subdivision 2 is extended if: (1) a request submitted to a state agency requires prior approval of a federal agency; or (2) an application submitted to a city, county, town, school district, metropolitan or regional entity, or other political subdivision requires prior approval of a state or federal agency. In cases described in this paragraph, the deadline for agency action is extended to 60 days after the required prior approval is granted.

(f) An agency may extend the time limit in subdivision 2 before the end of the initial 60-day period by providing written notice of the extension to the applicant. The notification must state the reasons for the extension and its anticipated length, which may not exceed 60 days unless approved by the applicant.

(g) An applicant may by written notice to the agency request an extension of the time limit under this section.

EFFECTIVE DATE.

This section is effective the day following final enactment.

Sec. 12.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 16A.531, subdivision 1a, is amended to read:

Subd. 1a.

Revenues.

The following revenues must be deposited in the environmental fund:

(1) all revenue from the motor vehicle transfer fee imposed under section 115A.908;

(2) all fees collected under section 116.07, subdivision 4d;

(3) all money collected by the Pollution Control Agency in enforcement matters as provided in section 115.073;

(4) all revenues from license fees for individual sewage treatment systems under section 115.56;

(5) all loan repayments deposited under section 115A.0716;

(6) all revenue from pollution prevention fees imposed under section 115D.12;

(7) all loan repayments deposited under section 116.994;

(8) all fees collected under section 116C.834;

(9) revenue collected from the solid waste management tax pursuant to chapter 297H;

(10) fees collected under section 473.844; and

(11) interest accrued on the fund; and

(12) money received in the form of gifts, grants, reimbursement, or appropriation from any source for any of the purposes provided in subdivision 2, except federal grants.

Sec. 13.

[17.035] VENISON DISTRIBUTION AND REIMBURSEMENT.

Subdivision 1.

Reimbursement.

A meat processor holding a license under chapter 28A may apply to the commissioner of agriculture for reimbursement of $70 towards the cost of processing donated deer. The meat processor shall deliver the deer, processed into cuts or ground meat, to a charitable organization that is registered under chapter 309 and with the commissioner of agriculture and that operates a food assistance program. To request reimbursement, the processor shall submit an application, on a form prescribed by the commissioner of agriculture, the tag number under which the deer was taken, and a receipt for the deer from the charitable organization.

Subd. 2.

Distribution.

(a) The commissioner of agriculture shall ensure the equitable statewide distribution of processed deer by requiring the charitable organization to allocate and distribute processed deer according to the allocation formula used in the distribution of United States Department of Agriculture commodities under the federal emergency food assistance program. The charitable organization must submit quarterly reports to the commissioner on forms prescribed by the commissioner. The reports must include, but are not limited to, information on the amount of processed deer received and the organizations to which the meat was distributed.

(b) The commissioner of agriculture may adopt rules to implement this section.

Sec. 14.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 17.4984, subdivision 1, is amended to read:

Subdivision 1.

License required.

(a) A person or entity may not operate an aquatic farm without first obtaining an aquatic farm license from the commissioner.

(b) Applications for an aquatic farm license must be made on forms provided by the commissioner.

(c) Licenses are valid for five years and are transferable upon notification to the commissioner.

(d) The commissioner shall issue an aquatic farm license on payment of the required license fee under section 17.4988.

(e) A license issued by the commissioner is not a determination of private property rights, but is only based on a determination that the licensee does not have a significant detrimental impact on the public resource.

(f) By January 15, 2008, the commissioner shall report to the senate and house of representatives committees on natural resource policy and finance on policy recommendations regarding aquaculture.

Sec. 15.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 18G.03, is amended by adding a subdivision to read:

Subd. 5.

Certain species not subject to chapter 18G.

This chapter does not apply to exotic aquatic plants and wild animal species regulated under chapter 84D.

Sec. 16.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 18G.11, is amended to read:

18G.11 COOPERATION WITH OTHER JURISDICTIONS.

Subdivision 1.

Detection and control agreements.

The commissioner may enter into cooperative agreements with organizations, persons, civic groups, governmental agencies, or other organizations to adopt and execute plans to detect and control areas infested or infected with harmful plant pests. The cooperative agreements may include provisions of joint funding of any control treatment.

If a harmful plant pest infestation or infection occurs and cannot be adequately controlled by individual persons, owners, tenants, or local units of government, the commissioner may conduct the necessary control measures independently or on a cooperative basis with federal or other units of government.

Subd. 2.

New and emerging plant pest programs.

The commissioner may make grants to municipalities or enter into contracts with municipalities, nurseries, colleges, universities, state or federal agencies in connection with new or emerging plant pests programs, including research, or any other organization with the legal authority to enter into contractual agreements.

Sec. 17.

[84.02] DEFINITIONS.

Subdivision 1.

Definitions.

For purposes of this chapter, the terms defined in this section shall have the meanings given them.

Subd. 2.

Best management practice for native prairie restoration.

"Best management practice for native prairie restoration" means using seeds collected from a native prairie within the same county or within 25 miles of the county's border, but not across the boundary of an ecotype region.

Subd. 3.

Created grassland.

"Created grassland" means a restoration using seeds or plants with origins outside of the state of Minnesota.

Subd. 4.

Ecotype region.

"Ecotype region" means the following ecological subsections and counties based on the Department of Natural Resources map, "County Landscape Groupings Based on Ecological Subsections," dated February 15, 2007.

Ecotype Region Counties or portions thereof:
Rochester Plateau, Blufflands, and Oak Savanna Houston, Winona, Fillmore, Wabasha, Goodhue, Mower, Freeborn, Steele, Olmsted, Rice, Waseca, Dakota, Dodge
Anoka Sand Plain, Big Woods, and St. Paul Baldwin Plains and Moraines Anoka, Hennepin, Ramsey, Washington, Chisago, Scott, Carver, McLeod, Wright, Benton, Isanti, Le Sueur, Sherburne
Inner Coteau and Coteau Moraines Lincoln, Lyon, Pipestone, Rock, Murray, Nobles, Jackson, Cottonwood
Red River Prairie (South) Traverse, Wilkin, Clay, Becker
Red River Prairie (North) and Aspen Parklands Kittson, Roseau, Red Lake, Pennington, Marshall, Clearwater, Mahnomen, Polk, Norman
Minnesota River Prairie (North) Big Stone, Pope, Stevens, Grant, Swift, Chippewa, Meeker, Kandiyohi, Renville, Lac qui Parle, Yellow Medicine
Minnesota River Prairie (South) Nicollet, Redwood, Brown, Watonwan, Martin, Faribault, Blue Earth, Sibley
Hardwood Hills Douglas, Morrison, Otter Tail, Stearns, Todd

Subd. 5.

Native prairie.

"Native prairie" means land that has never been plowed where native prairie vegetation originating from the site currently predominates or, if disturbed, is predominantly covered with native prairie vegetation that originated from the site. Unbroken pasture land used for livestock grazing can be considered native prairie if it has predominantly native vegetation originating from the site and conservation practices have maintained biological diversity.

Subd. 6.

Native prairie species of a local ecotype.

"Native prairie species of a local ecotype" means a genetically differentiated population of a species that has at least one trait (morphological, biochemical, fitness, or phenological) that is evolutionarily adapted to local environmental conditions, notably plant competitors, pathogens, pollinators, soil microorganisms, growing season length, climate, hydrology, and soil.

Subd. 7.

Restored native prairie.

"Restored native prairie" means a restoration using at least 25 representative and biologically diverse native prairie plant species of a local ecotype originating in the same county as the restoration site or within 25 miles of the county's border, but not across the boundary of an ecotype region.

Subd. 8.

Restored prairie.

"Restored prairie" means a restoration using at least 25 representative and biologically diverse native prairie plant species originating from the same ecotype region in which the restoration occurs.

Sec. 18.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 84.025, subdivision 9, is amended to read:

Subd. 9.

Professional services support account.

The commissioner of natural resources may bill the various programs carried out by the commissioner for the costs of providing them with professional support services. Except as provided under section 89.421, receipts must be credited to a special account in the state treasury and are appropriated to the commissioner to pay the costs for which the billings were made.

The commissioner of natural resources shall submit to the commissioner of finance before the start of each fiscal year a work plan showing the estimated work to be done during the coming year, the estimated cost of doing the work, and the positions and fees that will be necessary. This account is exempted from statewide and agency indirect cost payments.

Sec. 19.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 84.026, subdivision 1, is amended to read:

Subdivision 1.

Contracts.

The commissioner of natural resources is authorized to enter into contractual agreements with any public or private entity for the provision of statutorily prescribed natural resources services by the department. The contracts shall specify the services to be provided. Except as provided under section 89.421, funds generated in a contractual agreement made pursuant to this section shall be deposited in the special revenue fund and are appropriated to the department for purposes of providing the services specified in the contracts. The commissioner shall report revenues collected and expenditures made under this subdivision to the chairs of the Committees on Ways and Means in the house and Finance in the senate by January 1 of each odd-numbered year.

Sec. 20.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 84.027, is amended by adding a subdivision to read:

Subd. 13a.

Game and fish expedited permanent rules.

In addition to the authority granted in subdivision 13, the commissioner of natural resources may adopt rules under section 14.389 that are authorized under:

(1) chapters 97A, 97B, and 97C to describe zone or permit area boundaries, to designate fish spawning beds or fish preserves, to select hunters or anglers for areas, to provide for registration of game or fish, to prevent or control wildlife disease, or to correct errors or omissions in rules that do not have a substantive effect on the intent or application of the original rule; or

(2) section 84D.12 to designate prohibited invasive species, regulated invasive species, and unregulated nonnative species.

Sec. 21.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 84.0272, is amended by adding a subdivision to read:

Subd. 5.

Easement information.

Parties to an easement purchased under the authority of the commissioner must:

(1) specify in the easement all provisions that are perpetual in nature;

(2) file the easement with the county recorder or registrar of titles in the county in which the land is located; and

(3) submit an electronic copy of the easement to the commissioner.

Sec. 22.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 84.0855, subdivision 1, is amended to read:

Subdivision 1.

Sales authorized; gift certificates.

The commissioner may sell natural resources-related publications and maps; forest resource assessment products; federal migratory waterfowl, junior duck, and other federal stamps; and other nature-related merchandise, and may rent or sell items for the convenience of persons using Department of Natural Resources facilities or services. The commissioner may sell gift certificates for any items rented or sold. Notwithstanding section 16A.1285, a fee charged by the commissioner under this section may include a reasonable amount in excess of the actual cost to support Department of Natural Resources programs. The commissioner may advertise the availability of a program or item offered under this section.

Sec. 23.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 84.0855, subdivision 2, is amended to read:

Subd. 2.

Receipts; appropriation.

Except as provided under section 89.421, money received by the commissioner under this section or to buy supplies for the use of volunteers, may be credited to one or more special accounts in the state treasury and is appropriated to the commissioner for the purposes for which the money was received. Money received from sales at the state fair shall be available for state fair related costs. Money received from sales of intellectual property and software products or services shall be available for development, maintenance, and support of software products and systems.

Sec. 24.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 84.777, is amended to read:

84.777 OFF-HIGHWAY VEHICLE USE OF STATE LANDS RESTRICTED.

Subdivision 1.

Designated trails.

(a) Except as otherwise allowed by law or rules adopted by the commissioner, effective June 1, 2003, notwithstanding sections 84.787 to 84.805 and 84.92 to 84.929, the use of off-highway vehicles is prohibited on state land administered by the commissioner of natural resources, and on county-administered forest land within the boundaries of a state forest, except on roads and trails specifically designated and posted by the commissioner for use by off-highway vehicles.

(b) Paragraph (a) does not apply to county-administered land within a state forest if the county board adopts a resolution that modifies restrictions on the use of off-highway vehicles on county-administered land within the forest.

Subd. 2.

Off-highway vehicle seasons.

(a) The commissioner shall prescribe seasons for off-highway vehicle use on state forest lands. Except for designated forest roads, a person must not operate an off-highway vehicle on state forest lands outside of the seasons prescribed under this paragraph.

(b) The commissioner may designate and post winter trails on state forest lands for use by off-highway vehicles.

(c) For the purposes of this subdivision, "state forest lands" means forest lands under the authority of the commissioner as defined in section 89.001, subdivision 13, and lands managed by the commissioner under section 282.011.

Subd. 3.

Mapped trails.

Except as provided in sections 84.926 and 84.928, after completion of off-highway vehicle maps for the area, a person must not operate an off-highway vehicle on state land that is not mapped for the type of off-highway vehicle.

Subd. 4.

Exemption from rulemaking.

Determinations of the commissioner under this section may be by written order published in the State Register and are exempt from the rulemaking provisions of chapter 14. Section 14.386 does not apply.

Sec. 25.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 84.780, is amended to read:

84.780 OFF-HIGHWAY VEHICLE DAMAGE ACCOUNT.

(a) The off-highway vehicle damage account is created in the natural resources fund. Money in the off-highway vehicle damage account is appropriated to the commissioner of natural resources for the repair or restoration of property damaged by the illegal operation of off-highway vehicles or the operation of off-highway vehicles in an unpermitted area after August 1, 2003, and for the costs of administration for this section. Before the commissioner may make a payment from this account, the commissioner must determine whether the damage to the property was caused by the unpermitted or illegal use of off-highway vehicles, that the applicant has made reasonable efforts to identify the responsible individual and obtain payment from the individual, and that the applicant has made reasonable efforts to prevent reoccurrence. By June 30, 2008, the commissioner of finance must transfer the remaining balance in the account to the off-highway motorcycle account under section 84.794, the off-road vehicle account under section 84.803, and the all-terrain vehicle account under section 84.927. The amount transferred to each account must be proportionate to the amounts received in the damage account from the relevant off-highway vehicle accounts.

(b) Determinations of the commissioner under this section may be made by written order and are exempt from the rulemaking provisions of chapter 14. Section 14.386 does not apply.

(c) This section expires July 1, 2008 Money in the account is available until expended.

Sec. 26.

[84.8045] RESTRICTIONS ON OFF-ROAD VEHICLE TRAILS.

Notwithstanding any provision of sections 84.797 to 84.805 or other law to the contrary, the commissioner shall not permit land administered by the commissioner in Cass, Crow Wing, and Hubbard Counties to be used or developed for trails primarily for off-road vehicles as defined in section 84.797, subdivision 7, except:

(1) upon approval by the legislature; or

(2) in designated off-road vehicle use areas.

EFFECTIVE DATE.

This section is effective the day following final enactment.

Sec. 27.

[84.9011] OFF-HIGHWAY VEHICLE SAFETY AND CONSERVATION PROGRAM.

Subdivision 1.

Creation.

The commissioner of natural resources shall establish a program to promote the safe and responsible operation of off-highway vehicles in a manner that does not harm the environment.

Subd. 2.

Agreements.

(a) The commissioner shall enter into agreements with organizations for volunteer services that promote the safe and responsible operation of off-highway vehicles in a manner that does not harm the environment to maintain, make improvements to, and monitor trails on state forest land and other public lands. The organizations shall promote the operation of off-highway vehicles in a safe and responsible manner that complies with the laws and rules that relate to the operation of off-highway vehicles.

(b) The organizations may provide assistance to the department in locating, recruiting, and training instructors for off-highway vehicle training programs.

(c) The commissioner may provide assistance to enhance the comfort and safety of volunteers and to facilitate the implementation and administration of the safety and conservation program.

(d) The commissioner shall establish standards, train, and certify organizations and individuals participating as volunteers under this section. The training shall include:

(1) the identification of invasive species;

(2) correctly reporting the location of invasive species; and

(3) basic global positioning system operation.

Subd. 3.

Worker displacement prohibited.

The commissioner may not enter into any agreement that has the purpose of or results in the displacement of public employees by volunteers participating in the off-highway safety and conservation program under this section. The commissioner must certify to the appropriate bargaining agent that the work performed by a volunteer will not result in the displacement of currently employed workers or workers on seasonal layoff or layoff from a substantially equivalent position, including partial displacement such as reduction in hours of nonovertime work, wages, or other employment benefits.

Subd. 4.

Off-Highway Vehicle Safety Advisory Council.

(a) The commissioner of natural resources shall appoint an Off-Highway Vehicle Safety Advisory Council to advise the commissioner on:

(1) off-highway vehicle safety; and

(2) standards and certification for organizations and individuals participating as volunteers under this section.

Sec. 28.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 84.922, subdivision 1a, is amended to read:

Subd. 1a.

Exemptions.

All-terrain vehicles exempt from registration are:

(1) vehicles owned and used by the United States, the state, another state, or a political subdivision;

(2) vehicles registered in another state or country that have not been in this state for more than 30 consecutive days; and

(3) vehicles used exclusively in organized track racing events; and

(4) vehicles that are 25 years old or older and were originally produced as a separate identifiable make by a manufacturer.

Sec. 29.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 84.922, subdivision 5, is amended to read:

Subd. 5.

Fees for registration.

(a) The fee for a three-year registration of an all-terrain vehicle under this section, other than those registered by a dealer or manufacturer under paragraph (b) or (c), is:

(1) for public use before January 1, 2005, $23;

(2) for public use on January 1, 2005, and after, $30 $45;

(3) (2) for private use, $6; and

(4) (3) for a duplicate or transfer, $4.

(b) The total registration fee for all-terrain vehicles owned by a dealer and operated for demonstration or testing purposes is $50 per year. Dealer registrations are not transferable.

(c) The total registration fee for all-terrain vehicles owned by a manufacturer and operated for research, testing, experimentation, or demonstration purposes is $150 per year. Manufacturer registrations are not transferable.

(d) The fees collected under this subdivision must be credited to the all-terrain vehicle account.

EFFECTIVE DATE.

This section is effective January 1, 2008.

Sec. 30.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 84.927, subdivision 2, is amended to read:

Subd. 2.

Purposes.

Subject to appropriation by the legislature, money in the all-terrain vehicle account may only be spent for:

(1) the education and training program under section 84.925;

(2) administration, enforcement, and implementation of sections 84.773 to 84.929;

(3) acquisition, maintenance, and development of vehicle trails and use areas;

(4) grant-in-aid programs to counties and municipalities to construct and maintain all-terrain vehicle trails and use areas;

(5) grants-in-aid to local safety programs; and

(6) enforcement and public education grants to local law enforcement agencies.; and

(7) maintenance of minimum-maintenance forest roads designated under section 89.71, subdivision 5, and county forest roads that are part of a designated trail system within state forest boundaries as established under section 89.021.

The distribution of funds made available through grant-in-aid programs must be guided by the statewide comprehensive outdoor recreation plan.

Sec. 31.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 84.963, is amended to read:

84.963 PRAIRIE PLANT SEED PRODUCTION AREAS.

(a) The commissioner of natural resources shall study the feasibility of establishing private or public prairie plant seed production areas within prairie land locations. If prairie plant seed production is feasible, the commissioner may aid the establishment of production areas. The commissioner may enter cost-share or sharecrop agreements with landowners having easements for conservation purposes of ten or more years on their land to commercially produce prairie plant seed of Minnesota origin. The commissioner may only aid prairie plant seed production areas on agricultural land used to produce crops before December 23, 1985, and cropped three out of five years between 1981 and 1985.

(b) The commissioner shall compile, prepare, and electronically disseminate to the public prairie establishment guidance materials and resources. The resources must provide information and guidance on project planning, seed selection including ecotype and species mix, site preparation, seeding, maintenance, and technical service providers. The commissioner shall use actual prairie restoration projects under development on state-owned land to illustrate and demonstrate the practices described.

Sec. 32.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 84D.02, is amended by adding a subdivision to read:

Subd. 7.

Contracts for services for emergency invasive species prevention work; commissions to persons employed.

The commissioner may contract for or accept the services of any persons whose aid is available, temporarily or otherwise, in emergency invasive species prevention work, either gratuitously or for compensation not in excess of the limits provided by law with respect to the employment of labor by the commissioner. The commissioner may issue a commission, or other written evidence of authority, to any person whose services are so arranged for and may thereby empower the person to act, temporarily or otherwise, in any other capacity, with powers and duties as may be specified in the commission or other written evidence of authority, but not in excess of the powers conferred by law. The commissioner of agriculture, under authority provided by law, shall cooperate with the commissioner in emergency control of invasive species prevention.

Sec. 33.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 84D.03, subdivision 1, is amended to read:

Subdivision 1.

Infested waters; restricted activities.

(a) The commissioner shall designate a water of the state as an infested water if the commissioner determines that:

(1) the water contains a population of an aquatic invasive species that could spread to other waters if use of the water and related activities are not regulated to prevent this; or

(2) the water is highly likely to be infested by an aquatic invasive species because it is connected to a water that contains a population of an aquatic invasive species.

(b) When determining which invasive species comprise infested waters, the commissioner shall consider:

(1) the extent of a species distribution within the state;

(2) the likely means of spread for a species; and

(3) whether regulations specific to infested waters containing a specific species will effectively reduce that species' spread.

(c) The presence of common carp and curly-leaf pondweed shall not be the basis for designating a water as infested.

(d) The designation of infested waters by the commissioner shall be by written order published in the State Register. Designations are not subject to the rulemaking provisions of chapter 14 and section 14.386 does not apply.

Sec. 34.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 84D.12, subdivision 1, is amended to read:

Subdivision 1.

Required rules.

The commissioner shall adopt rules:

(1) designating infested waters, prohibited invasive species, regulated invasive species, and unregulated nonnative species of aquatic plants and wild animals;

(2) governing the application for and issuance of permits under this chapter, which rules may include a fee schedule; and

(3) governing notification under section 84D.08.

Sec. 35.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 84D.12, subdivision 3, is amended to read:

Subd. 3.

Expedited rules.

The commissioner may adopt rules under section 84.027, subdivision 13, that designate:

(1) prohibited invasive species of aquatic plants and wild animals;

(2) regulated invasive species of aquatic plants and wild animals; and

(3) unregulated nonnative species of aquatic plants and wild animals; and

(4) infested waters.

Sec. 36.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 84D.13, subdivision 7, is amended to read:

Subd. 7.

Satisfaction of civil penalties.

A civil penalty is due and a watercraft license suspension is effective 30 days after issuance of the civil citation. A civil penalty collected under this section is payable to the commissioner and must be credited to the water recreation account invasive species account.

Sec. 37.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 84D.14, is amended to read:

84D.14 EXEMPTIONS.

This chapter does not apply to:

(1) pathogens and terrestrial arthropods regulated under sections 18G.01 to 18G.16 18G.15; or

(2) mammals and birds defined by statute as livestock.

Sec. 38.

[84D.15] INVASIVE SPECIES ACCOUNT.

Subdivision 1.

Creation.

The invasive species account is created in the state treasury in the natural resources fund.

Subd. 2.

Receipts.

Money received from surcharges on watercraft licenses under section 86B.415, subdivision 7, and civil penalties under section 84D.13 shall be deposited in the invasive species account. Each year, the commissioner of finance shall transfer from the game and fish fund to the invasive species account, the annual surcharge collected on nonresident fishing licenses under section 97A.475, subdivision 7, paragraph (b).

Subd. 3.

Use of money in account.

Money credited to the invasive species account in subdivision 2 shall be used for management of invasive species and implementation of this chapter as it pertains to invasive species, including control, public awareness, law enforcement, assessment and monitoring, management planning, and research.

Sec. 39.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 85.013, is amended by adding a subdivision to read:

Subd. 11b.

Greenleaf Lake State Recreation Area, which is hereby renamed from Greenleaf Lake State Park.

Sec. 40.

[85.0146] CUYUNA COUNTRY STATE RECREATION AREA; CITIZENS ADVISORY COUNCIL.

Subdivision 1.

Advisory council created.

The Cuyuna Country State Recreation Area Citizens Advisory Council is established. Membership on the advisory council shall include:

(1) a representative of the Cuyuna Range Mineland Recreation Area Joint Powers Board;

(2) a representative of the Croft Mine Historical Park Joint Powers Board;

(3) a designee of the Cuyuna Range Mineland Reclamation Committee who has worked as a miner in the local area;

(4) a representative of the Crow Wing County Board;

(5) an elected state official;

(6) a representative of the Grand Rapids regional office of the Department of Natural Resources;

(7) a designee of the Iron Range Resources and Rehabilitation Board;

(8) a designee of the local business community selected by the area chambers of commerce;

(9) a designee of the local environmental community selected by the Crow Wing County District 5 commissioner;

(10) a designee of a local education organization selected by the Crosby-Ironton School Board;

(11) a designee of one of the recreation area user groups selected by the Cuyuna Range Chamber of Commerce; and

(12) a member of the Cuyuna Country Heritage Preservation Society.

Subd. 2.

Administration.

(a) The advisory council must meet at least four times annually. The council shall elect a chair and meetings shall be at the call of the chair.

(b) Members of the advisory council shall serve as volunteers for two-year terms with the ability to be reappointed. Members shall accept no per diem.

(c) The state recreation area manager may attend the council meetings and advise the council of issues in management of the recreation area.

(d) Before a major decision is implemented in the Cuyuna Country State Recreation Area, the area manager must consult with the council and take into consideration any council comments or advice that may impact the major decision.

Sec. 41.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 85.054, is amended by adding a subdivision to read:

Subd. 13.

Cuyuna Country State Recreation Area.

A state park permit is not required and a fee may not be charged for motor vehicle entry or parking at Croft Mine Historical Park and Portsmouth Mine Lake Overlook in Cuyuna Country State Recreation Area, except for overnight camping.

Sec. 42.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 85.32, subdivision 1, is amended to read:

Subdivision 1.

Areas marked.

The commissioner of natural resources is authorized in cooperation with local units of government and private individuals and groups when feasible to mark canoe and boating routes on the Little Fork, Big Fork, Minnesota, St. Croix, Snake, Mississippi, Red Lake, Cannon, Straight, Des Moines, Crow Wing, St. Louis, Pine, Rum, Kettle, Cloquet, Root, Zumbro, Pomme de Terre within Swift County, Watonwan, Cottonwood, Whitewater, Chippewa from Benson in Swift County to Montevideo in Chippewa County, Long Prairie, Red River of the North, Sauk, Otter Tail, Redwood, and Crow Rivers which have historic and scenic values and to mark appropriately points of interest, portages, camp sites, and all dams, rapids, waterfalls, whirlpools, and other serious hazards which are dangerous to canoe and watercraft travelers.

Sec. 43.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 86B.706, subdivision 2, is amended to read:

Subd. 2.

Money deposited in account.

The following shall be deposited in the state treasury and credited to the water recreation account:

(1) fees and surcharges from titling and licensing of watercraft under this chapter;

(2) fines, installment payments, and forfeited bail according to section 86B.705, subdivision 2;

(3) civil penalties according to section 84D.13;

(4) mooring fees and receipts from the sale of marine gas at state-operated or state-assisted small craft harbors and mooring facilities according to section 86A.21;

(5) (4) the unrefunded gasoline tax attributable to watercraft use under section 296A.18; and

(6) (5) fees for permits issued to control or harvest aquatic plants other than wild rice under section 103G.615, subdivision 2.

Sec. 44.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 88.01, is amended by adding a subdivision to read:

Subd. 27.

Community forest.

"Community forest" means public and private trees and associated plants occurring individually, in small groups, or under forest conditions within a municipality.

Sec. 45.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 88.79, subdivision 1, is amended to read:

Subdivision 1.

Employment of competent foresters; service to private owners.

The commissioner of natural resources may employ competent foresters to furnish owners of forest lands within the state of Minnesota who own not more than 1,000 acres of forest land, forest management services consisting of:

(1) advice in management and protection of timber, including written stewardship and forest management plans;

(2) selection and marking of timber to be cut;

(3) measurement of products;

(4) aid in marketing harvested products;

(5) provision of tree-planting equipment; and

(6) advice in community forest management; and

(7) such other services as the commissioner of natural resources deems necessary or advisable to promote maximum sustained yield of timber and other benefits upon such forest lands.

Sec. 46.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 88.79, subdivision 2, is amended to read:

Subd. 2.

Charge for service; receipts to special revenue fund.

The commissioner of natural resources may charge the owner receiving such services such sums as the commissioner shall determine to be fair and reasonable. The charges must account for differences in the value of timber and other benefits. The receipts from such services shall be credited to the special revenue fund and are annually appropriated to the commissioner for the purposes specified in subdivision 1.

Sec. 47.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 88.82, is amended to read:

88.82 MINNESOTA RELEAF PROGRAM.

The Minnesota releaf program is established in the Department of Natural Resources to encourage, promote, and fund the inventory, planting, assessment, maintenance, and improvement, protection, and restoration of trees and forest resources in this state to enhance community forest ecosystem health and sustainability as well as to reduce atmospheric carbon dioxide levels and promote energy conservation.

Sec. 48.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 89.001, subdivision 8, is amended to read:

Subd. 8.

Forest resources.

"Forest resources" means those natural assets of forest lands, including timber and other forest crops; biological diversity; recreation; fish and wildlife habitat; wilderness; rare and distinctive flora and fauna; air; water; soil; climate; and educational, aesthetic, and historic values.

Sec. 49.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 89.001, is amended by adding a subdivision to read:

Subd. 15.

Forest pest.

"Forest pest" means any vertebrate or invertebrate animal, plant pathogen, or plant that is determined by the commissioner to be harmful, injurious, or destructive to forests or timber.

Sec. 50.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 89.001, is amended by adding a subdivision to read:

Subd. 16.

Shade tree pest.

"Shade tree pest" means any vertebrate or invertebrate animal, plant pathogen, or plant that is determined by the commissioner to be harmful, injurious, or destructive to shade trees or community forests.

Sec. 51.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 89.001, is amended by adding a subdivision to read:

Subd. 17.

Community forest.

"Community forest" has the meaning given under section 88.01, subdivision 27.

Sec. 52.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 89.001, is amended by adding a subdivision to read:

Subd. 18.

Shade tree.

"Shade tree" means a woody perennial grown primarily for aesthetic or environmental purposes.

Sec. 53.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 89.01, subdivision 1, is amended to read:

Subdivision 1.

Best methods.

The commissioner shall ascertain and observe the best methods of reforesting cutover and denuded lands, foresting waste lands, preventing destruction minimizing loss or damage of forests and lands forest resources by fire, forest pests, or shade tree pests, administering forests on forestry principles, encouraging private owners to preserve and grow trees or timber for commercial or other purposes, and conserving the forests around the head waters of streams and on the watersheds of the state.

Sec. 54.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 89.01, subdivision 2, is amended to read:

Subd. 2.

General duties.

The commissioner shall execute all rules pertaining to forestry and forest protection within the jurisdiction of the state; have charge of the work of protecting all forests and lands from fire, forest pests, and shade tree pests; shall investigate the origin of all forest fires; and prosecute all violators as provided by law; shall prepare and print for public distribution an abstract of the forest fire laws of Minnesota, together with such rules as may be formulated.

The commissioner shall prepare printed notices calling attention to the dangers from forest fires and cause them to be posted in conspicuous places.

Sec. 55.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 89.01, subdivision 4, is amended to read:

Subd. 4.

Forest plans.

The commissioner shall cooperate with the several departments of the state and federal governments and with counties, towns, municipalities, corporations, or individuals in the preparation of plans for forest protection, and management, and planting or replacement of trees, in wood lots, and community forests or on timber tracts, using such influence as time will permit toward the establishment of scientific forestry principles in the management, protection, and promotion of the forest resources of the state.

Sec. 56.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 89.22, subdivision 2, is amended to read:

Subd. 2.

Receipts to natural resources special revenue fund.

Fees collected under subdivision 1 shall be credited to a forest land use account in the natural resources fund the special revenue fund and are annually appropriated to the commissioner to recoup the costs of developing, operating, and maintaining facilities necessary for the specified uses in subdivision 1 or to prevent or mitigate resource impacts of those uses.

EFFECTIVE DATE.

This section is effective July 1, 2007, and applies to fees collected according to Minnesota Statutes, section 89.22, subdivision 1, after August 1, 2006.

Sec. 57.

[89.421] FOREST RESOURCE ASSESSMENT PRODUCTS AND SERVICES ACCOUNT.

Subdivision 1.

Creation.

The forest resource assessment products and services account is created in the state treasury in the natural resources fund.

Subd. 2.

Receipts.

Money received from forest resource assessment product sales and services provided by the commissioner under sections 84.025, subdivision 9; 84.026; and 84.0855 shall be credited to the forest resource assessment products and services account. Forest resource assessment products and services include the sale of aerial photography, remote sensing, and satellite imagery products and services.

Subd. 3.

Use of money in account.

Money credited to the forest resource assessment products and services account under subdivision 2 is annually appropriated to the commissioner and shall be used to maintain the staff and facilities producing the aerial photography, remote sensing, and satellite imagery products and services.

Sec. 58.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 89.51, subdivision 1, is amended to read:

Subdivision 1.

Applicability.

For the purposes of sections 89.51 to 89.61 89.64 the terms described in this section have the meanings ascribed to them.

Sec. 59.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 89.51, subdivision 6, is amended to read:

Subd. 6.

Infestation.

"Infestation," includes actual, potential, incipient, or emergency emergent infestation or infection by forest pests or shade tree pests.

Sec. 60.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 89.51, subdivision 9, is amended to read:

Subd. 9.

Forest land or forest.

"Forest land" or "forest," means land on which occurs a stand or potential stand of trees valuable for timber products, watershed or wildlife protection, recreational uses, community forest benefits, or other purposes, and shall include lands owned or controlled by the state of Minnesota.

Sec. 61.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 89.52, is amended to read:

89.52 SURVEYS, INVESTIGATIONS.

The commissioner shall make surveys and investigations to determine the presence of infestations of forest pests or shade tree pests. For this purpose, duly designated representatives of the commissioner may enter at reasonable times on public and private lands for the purpose of conducting such to conduct the surveys and investigations.

Sec. 62.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 89.53, is amended to read:

89.53 CONTROL OF FOREST PESTS AND SHADE TREE PESTS.

Subdivision 1.

Commissioner's duties; notice of control measures.

Whenever the commissioner finds that an area in the state is infested or threatened to be infested with forest pests or shade tree pests, the commissioner shall determine whether measures of control are needed and are available, what control measures are to be applied, and the area over which the control measures shall be applied. The commissioner shall prescribe a proposed zone of infestation covering the area in which control measures are to be applied and shall publish notice of the proposal once a week, for two successive weeks in a newspaper having a general circulation in each county located in whole or in part in the proposed zone of infestation. Prescribing zones of infestation is and prescribing measures of control are exempt from the rulemaking provisions of chapter 14 and section 14.386 does not apply.

Subd. 2.

Notice requirements; public comment.

The notice shall include a description of the boundaries of the proposed zone of infestation, the control measures to be applied, and a time and place where municipalities and owners of forest lands or shade trees in the zone may show cause orally or in writing why the zone and control measures should or should not be established. The commissioner shall consider any statements received in determining whether the zone shall be established and the control measures applied.

Subd. 3.

Experimental programs.

The commissioner may establish experimental programs for the control of forest pests or shade tree pests and for municipal reforestation.

Sec. 63.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 89.54, is amended to read:

89.54 ZONES OF INFESTATION, ESTABLISHMENT.

Upon the decision by the commissioner that the establishment of a zone of infestation is necessary, the commissioner shall make a written order establishing said the zone, and upon making said the order, said the zone shall be established. Notice of the establishment of the zone shall thereupon be published in a newspaper having a general circulation in each county located in whole or in part in the proposed zone and posted on the Department of Natural Resources Web site.

Sec. 64.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 89.55, is amended to read:

89.55 INFESTATION CONTROL, COSTS.

Upon the establishment of the zone of infestation, the commissioner may apply measures of infestation prevention and control on public and private forest and other lands within such zone and to any trees, timber, plants or shrubs thereon, wood or wood products, or contaminated soil harboring or which may harbor the forest pests or shade tree pests. For this purpose, the duly authorized representatives of the commissioner are authorized to enter upon any lands, public or private within such the zone. The commissioner may enter into agreements with owners of the lands in the zone covering the control work on their lands, and fixing the pro rata basis on which the cost of such the work will be shared between the commissioner and said the owner.

Sec. 65.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 89.56, subdivision 1, is amended to read:

Subdivision 1.

Statement of expenses; cost to owners.

At the end of each fiscal year and upon completion of the infestation control measures in any zone of infestation, the commissioner shall prepare a certified statement of expenses incurred in carrying out such the measures, including expenses of owners covered by agreements entered into pursuant to section 89.55. The statement shall show the amount which that the commissioner determines to be its the commissioner's share of the expenses. The share of the commissioner may include funds and the value of other contributions made available by the federal government and other cooperators. The balance of such the costs shall constitute a charge on an acreage basis as provided herein against the owners of lands in the zone containing trees valuable or potentially valuable for commercial timber purposes and affected or likely to be affected by the forest pests or shade tree pests for which control measures were conducted. In fixing the rates at which charges shall be made against each owner, the commissioner shall consider the present commercial value of the trees on the land, the present and potential benefits to such the owner from the application of the control measures, and the cost of applying such the measures to the land, and such other factors as in the discretion of the commissioner will enable determination of an equitable distribution of the cost to all such owners. No charge shall be made against owners to the extent that they have individually or as members of a cooperative association contributed funds, supplies, or services pursuant to agreement under this section.

Sec. 66.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 89.56, subdivision 3, is amended to read:

Subd. 3.

Collection.

The unpaid charges assessed under sections 89.51 to 89.61 89.64 and the actions of the commissioner on any protests filed pursuant to subdivision 2, shall be reported to the tax levying authority for the county in which the lands for which the charges are assessed are situated and shall be made a public record. Any charges finally determined to be due shall become a special assessment and shall be payable in the same manner and with the same interest and penalty charges and with the same procedure for collection as apply to ad valorem property taxes. Upon collection of the charges, the county treasurer shall forthwith cause the amounts thereof to be paid to the forest pest and shade tree pest control fund account created by section 89.58. Any unpaid charge or lien against the lands shall not be affected by the sale thereof or by dissolution of the zone of infestation.

Sec. 67.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 89.57, is amended to read:

89.57 DISSOLUTION OF ZONE INFESTATION.

Whenever the commissioner shall determine that forest pest or shade tree pest control work within an established zone of infestation is no longer necessary or feasible, the commissioner shall dissolve the zone.

Sec. 68.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 89.58, is amended to read:

89.58 FOREST PEST AND SHADE TREE PEST CONTROL ACCOUNT.

All money collected under the provisions of sections 89.51 to 89.61 89.64, together with such money as may be appropriated by the legislature or allocated by the Legislative Advisory Commission for the purposes of sections 89.51 to 89.61 89.64, and such money as may be contributed or paid by the federal government, or any other public or private agency, organization or individual, shall be deposited in the state treasury, to the credit of the forest pest and shade tree pest control account, which account is hereby created, and any moneys therein are appropriated to the commissioner for use in carrying out the purposes hereof of sections 89.51 to 89.64.

Sec. 69.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 89.59, is amended to read:

89.59 COOPERATION.

The commissioner may cooperate with the United States or agencies thereof, other agencies of the state, county or municipal governments, agencies of neighboring states, or other public or private organizations or individuals and may accept such funds, equipment, supplies, or services from cooperators and others as it the commissioner may provide in agreements with the United States or its agencies for matching of federal funds as required under laws of the United States relating to forest pests and shade tree pests.

Sec. 70.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 89.60, is amended to read:

89.60 DUTIES, RULES; COMMISSIONER.

The commissioner is authorized to employ personnel in accordance with the laws of this state, to procure necessary equipment, supplies, and service, to enter into contracts, to provide funds to any agency of the United States for work or services under sections 89.51 to 89.61 89.64, and to designate or appoint, as its the commissioner's representatives, employees of its cooperators, including employees of the United States or any agency thereof. The commissioner may prescribe rules for carrying out the purposes hereof of this section.

Sec. 71.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 89.61, is amended to read:

89.61 ACT SUPPLEMENTAL.

Provisions of sections 89.51 to 89.61 89.64 are supplementary to and not to be construed to repeal existing legislation.

Sec. 72.

[89.62] SHADE TREE PEST CONTROL; GRANT PROGRAM.

Subdivision 1.

Grants.

The commissioner may make grants to aid in the control of a shade tree pest. To be eligible, a grantee must have a pest control program approved by the commissioner that:

(1) defines tree ownership and who is responsible for the costs associated with control measures;

(2) defines the zone of infestation within which the control measures are to be applied;

(3) includes a tree inspector certified under section 89.63 and having the authority to enter and inspect private lands;

(4) has the means to enforce measures needed to limit the spread of shade tree pests; and

(5) provides that grant money received will be deposited in a separate fund to be spent only for the purposes authorized by this section.

Subd. 2.

Grant eligibility.

The following are eligible for grants under this section:

(1) a home rule charter or statutory city or a town that exercises municipal powers under section 368.01 or any general or special law;

(2) a special park district organized under chapter 398;

(3) a special-purpose park and recreation board;

(4) a soil and water conservation district;

(5) a county; or

(6) any other organization with the legal authority to enter into contractual agreements.

Subd. 3.

Rules; applicability to municipalities.

The rules and procedures adopted under this section by the commissioner apply in a municipality unless the municipality adopts an ordinance determined by the commissioner to be more stringent than the rules and procedures of the commissioner. The rules and procedures of the commissioner or the municipality apply to all state agencies, special purpose districts, and metropolitan commissions as defined in section 473.121, subdivision 5a, that own or control land adjacent to or within a zone of infestation.

Sec. 73.

[89.63] CERTIFICATION OF TREE INSPECTORS.

(a) The governing body of a municipality may appoint a qualified tree inspector. Two or more municipalities may jointly appoint a tree inspector for the purpose of administering their respective pest control programs.

(b) Upon a determination by the commissioner that a candidate for the position of tree inspector is qualified, the commissioner shall issue a certificate of qualification to the tree inspector. The certificate is valid for one year. A person certified as a tree inspector by the commissioner may enter and inspect any public or private property that might harbor forest pests or shade tree pests. The commissioner shall offer an annual tree inspector certification workshop, upon completion of which participants are qualified as tree inspectors.

(c) The commissioner may suspend and, upon notice and hearing, decertify a tree inspector if the tree inspector fails to act competently or in the public interest in the performance of duties.

Sec. 74.

[89.64] EXEMPTIONS.

This chapter does not supersede the authority of the Department of Agriculture under chapter 18G.

Sec. 75.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 89A.11, is amended to read:

89A.11 REPEALER.

Sections 89A.01; 89A.02; 89A.03; 89A.04; 89A.05; 89A.06; 89A.07; 89A.08; 89A.09; 89A.10; and 89A.11, are repealed June 30, 2007 2017.

Sec. 76.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 90.161, is amended by adding a subdivision to read:

Subd. 4.

Change of security.

Prior to any harvest activity, or activities incidental to the preparation for harvest, a purchaser having posted a bond for 100 percent of the purchase price of a sale may request the release of the bond and the commissioner shall grant the release upon cash payment to the commissioner of 15 percent of the appraised value of the sale, plus eight percent interest on the appraised value of the sale from the date of purchase to the date of release.

EFFECTIVE DATE.

This section is effective the day following final enactment.

Sec. 77.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 93.0015, subdivision 3, is amended to read:

Subd. 3.

Expiration.

Notwithstanding section 15.059, subdivision 5, or other law to the contrary, the committee expires June 30, 2007 2011.

Sec. 78.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 93.22, subdivision 1, is amended to read:

Subdivision 1.

Generally.

(a) All payments under sections 93.14 to 93.285 shall be made to the Department of Natural Resources and shall be credited according to this section.

(a) If the lands or minerals and mineral rights covered by a lease are held by the state by virtue of an act of Congress, payments made under the lease shall be credited to the permanent fund of the class of land to which the leased premises belong.

(b) If a lease covers the bed of navigable waters, payments made under the lease shall be credited to the permanent school fund of the state.

(c) If the lands or minerals and mineral rights covered by a lease are held by the state in trust for the taxing districts, payments made under the lease shall be distributed annually on the first day of September as follows:

(1) 20 percent to the general fund; and

(2) 80 percent to the respective counties in which the lands lie, to be apportioned among the taxing districts interested therein as follows: county, three-ninths; town or city, two-ninths; and school district, four-ninths.

(d) Except as provided under this section and except where the disposition of payments may be otherwise directed by law, all payments shall be paid into the general fund of the state.

(b) Twenty percent of all payments under sections 93.14 to 93.285 shall be credited to the minerals management account in the natural resources fund as costs for the administration and management of state mineral resources by the commissioner of natural resources.

(c) The remainder of the payments shall be credited as follows:

(1) if the lands or minerals and mineral rights covered by a lease are held by the state by virtue of an act of Congress, payments made under the lease shall be credited to the permanent fund of the class of land to which the leased premises belong;

(2) if a lease covers the bed of navigable waters, payments made under the lease shall be credited to the permanent school fund of the state;

(3) if the lands or minerals and mineral rights covered by a lease are held by the state in trust for the taxing districts, payments made under the lease shall be distributed annually on the first day of September to the respective counties in which the lands lie, to be apportioned among the taxing districts interested therein as follows: county, three-ninths; town or city, two-ninths; and school district, four-ninths;

(4) if the lands or mineral rights covered by a lease became the absolute property of the state under the provisions of chapter 84A, payments made under the lease shall be distributed as follows: county containing the land from which the income was derived, five-eighths; and general fund of the state, three-eighths; and

(5) except as provided under this section and except where the disposition of payments may be otherwise directed by law, payments made under a lease shall be paid into the general fund of the state.

Sec. 79.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 97A.045, is amended by adding a subdivision to read:

Subd. 12.

Establishing fees.

Notwithstanding section 16A.1283, the commissioner may, by written order published in the State Register, establish fees providing for the use of state wildlife management area or aquatic management area lands for specific purposes, including dog trials, special events, and commercial uses. The fees are not subject to the rulemaking provisions of chapter 14 and section 14.386 does not apply.

Sec. 80.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 97A.055, subdivision 4, is amended to read:

Subd. 4.

Game and fish annual reports.

(a) By December 15 each year, the commissioner shall submit to the legislative committees having jurisdiction over appropriations and the environment and natural resources reports on each of the following:

(1) the amount of revenue from the following and purposes for which expenditures were made:

(i) the small game license surcharge under section 97A.475, subdivision 4;

(ii) the Minnesota migratory waterfowl stamp under section 97A.475, subdivision 5, clause (1);

(iii) the trout and salmon stamp under section 97A.475, subdivision 10;

(iv) the pheasant stamp under section 97A.475, subdivision 5, clause (2); and

(v) the turkey stamp under section 97A.475, subdivision 5, clause (3); and

(vi) the deer license donations and surcharges under section 97A.475, subdivisions 3, paragraph (b), and 3a;

(2) the amounts available under section 97A.075, subdivision 1, paragraphs (b) and (c), and the purposes for which these amounts were spent;

(3) money credited to the game and fish fund under this section and purposes for which expenditures were made from the fund;

(4) outcome goals for the expenditures from the game and fish fund; and

(5) summary and comments of citizen oversight committee reviews under subdivision 4b.

(b) The report must include the commissioner's recommendations, if any, for changes in the laws relating to the stamps and surcharge referenced in paragraph (a).

Sec. 81.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 97A.065, is amended by adding a subdivision to read:

Subd. 6.

Deer license donations and surcharges.

(a) The surcharges and donations collected under section 97A.475, subdivision 3, paragraph (b), and subdivision 3a, shall be deposited in an account in the special revenue fund and are appropriated to the commissioner for deer management, including for grants or payments to agencies, organizations, or individuals for assisting with the cost of processing deer taken for population management purposes for venison donation programs. None of the additional license fees shall be transferred to any other agency for administration of programs other than venison donation. If any money transferred by the commissioner is not used for a venison donation program, it shall be returned to the commissioner.

(b) By February 10, 2010, the commissioner shall report to the legislature on the participation in and the effectiveness of the venison donation program.

Sec. 82.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 97A.133, is amended by adding a subdivision to read:

Subd. 66. Vermillion Highlands Wildlife Management Area, Dakota County.

Sec. 83.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 97A.205, is amended to read:

97A.205 ENFORCEMENT OFFICER POWERS.

An enforcement officer is authorized to:

(1) execute and serve court issued warrants and processes relating to wild animals, wild rice, public waters, water pollution, conservation, and use of water, in the same manner as a sheriff;

(2) enter any land to carry out the duties and functions of the division;

(3) make investigations of violations of the game and fish laws;

(4) take an affidavit, if it aids an investigation;

(5) arrest, without a warrant, a person who is detected in the actual violation of the game and fish laws, a provision of chapters 84, 84A, 84D, 85, 86A, 88 to 97C, 103E, 103F, 103G, sections 86B.001 to 86B.815, 89.51 to 89.61 89.64; or 609.66, subdivision 1, clauses (1), (2), (5), and (7); and 609.68; and

(6) take an arrested person before a court in the county where the offense was committed and make a complaint.

Nothing in this section grants an enforcement officer any greater powers than other licensed peace officers.

Sec. 84.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 97A.405, subdivision 2, is amended to read:

Subd. 2.

Personal possession.

(a) A person acting under a license or traveling from an area where a licensed activity was performed must have in personal possession either: (1) the proper license, if the license has been issued to and received by the person; or (2) the proper license identification number or stamp validation, if the license has been sold to the person by electronic means but the actual license has not been issued and received.

(b) If possession of a license or a license identification number is required, a person must exhibit, as requested by a conservation officer or peace officer, either: (1) the proper license if the license has been issued to and received by the person; or (2) the proper license identification number or stamp validation and a valid state driver's license, state identification card, or other form of identification provided by the commissioner, if the license has been sold to the person by electronic means but the actual license has not been issued and received.

(c) If the actual license has been issued and received, a receipt for license fees, a copy of a license, or evidence showing the issuance of a license, including the license identification number or stamp validation, does not entitle a licensee to exercise the rights or privileges conferred by a license.

(d) A license or stamp issued electronically and not immediately provided to the licensee shall be mailed to the licensee within 30 days of purchase of the license or stamp validation, except for a pictorial turkey stamp or a pictorial trout and salmon stamp. A pictorial turkey stamp or a pictorial, migratory waterfowl, pheasant, or trout and salmon stamp shall be mailed provided to the licensee after purchase of a license or stamp validation only if the licensee pays an additional $2 fee.

Sec. 85.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 97A.411, subdivision 1, is amended to read:

Subdivision 1.

License period.

(a) Except as provided in paragraphs (b), (c), and (d), and (e), a license is valid during the lawful time within the license year that the licensed activity may be performed. A license year begins on the first day of March and ends on the last day of February.

(b) A license issued under section 97A.475, subdivision 6, clause (5), 97A.475, subdivision 7, clause (2), (3), (5), or (6), or 97A.475, subdivision 12, clause (2), is valid for the full license period even if this period extends into the next license year, provided that the license period selected by the licensee begins at the time of issuance.

(c) When the last day of February falls on a Saturday, an annual resident or nonresident fish house or dark house license, including a rental fish house or dark house license, obtained for the license year covering the last day of February, is valid through Sunday, March 1 and the angling license of the fish house licensee is extended through March 1.

(d) A lifetime license issued under section 97A.473 or 97A.474 is valid during the lawful time within the license year that the licensed activity may be performed for the lifetime of the licensee.

(e) A three-year fish house or dark house license is valid during the license year that it is purchased and the two succeeding license years.

Sec. 86.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 97A.451, subdivision 3a, is amended to read:

Subd. 3a.

Nonresidents under age 16 18; small game.

(a) A nonresident under age 16 18 may obtain a small game license at the resident fee under section 97A.475, subdivision 2, clause (2), if the nonresident:

(1) possesses a firearms safety certificate; or

(2) if age 13 or under, is accompanied by a parent or guardian when purchasing the license.

(b) A nonresident age 13 or under must be accompanied by a parent or guardian to take small game. A nonresident age 12 or under is not required to possess a firearms safety certificate under section 97B.020 to take small game.

Sec. 87.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 97A.465, is amended by adding a subdivision to read:

Subd. 1a.

Spouses of residents on active military duty.

Notwithstanding section 97A.405, subdivision 5, the spouse of a resident who is on active military duty may obtain resident hunting and fishing licenses.

Sec. 88.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 97A.465, is amended by adding a subdivision to read:

Subd. 1b.

Residents discharged from active service.

(a) A resident who has served at any time during the preceding 24 months in federal active service, as defined in section 190.05, subdivision 5c, outside the United States as a member of the National Guard, or as a reserve component or active duty member of the United States armed forces and has been discharged from active service may take small game and fish without a license if the resident possesses official military discharge papers. The resident must obtain the seals, tags, and coupons required of a licensee, which must be furnished without charge.

(b) The commissioner shall issue, without fee, a deer license to a resident who has served at any time during the preceding 24 months in federal active service, as defined in section 190.05, subdivision 5c, outside the United States as a member of the National Guard, or as a reserve component or active duty member of the United States armed forces and has been discharged from active service. Eligibility under this paragraph is limited to one license per resident.

Sec. 89.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 97A.473, subdivision 3, is amended to read:

Subd. 3.

Lifetime small game hunting license; fee.

(a) A resident lifetime small game hunting license authorizes a person to hunt and trap small game in the state. The license authorizes those hunting and trapping activities authorized by the annual resident small game hunting license and trapping licenses. The license does not include a turkey stamp validation or any other hunting stamps required by law.

(b) The fees for a resident lifetime small game hunting license are:

(1) age 3 and under, $217;

(2) age 4 to age 15, $290;

(3) age 16 to age 50, $363; and

(4) age 51 and over, $213.

EFFECTIVE DATE.

This section is effective August 1, 2007, and applies retroactively to licenses issued after February 28, 2001.

Sec. 90.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 97A.473, subdivision 5, is amended to read:

Subd. 5.

Lifetime sporting license; fee.

(a) A resident lifetime sporting license authorizes a person to take fish by angling and hunt and trap small game in the state. The license authorizes those activities authorized by the annual resident angling and, resident small game hunting, and resident trapping licenses. The license does not include a trout and salmon stamp validation, a turkey stamp validation, or any other hunting stamps required by law.

(b) The fees for a resident lifetime sporting license are:

(1) age 3 and under, $357;

(2) age 4 to age 15, $480;

(3) age 16 to age 50, $613; and

(4) age 51 and over, $413.

EFFECTIVE DATE.

This section is effective August 1, 2007, and applies retroactively to licenses issued after February 28, 2001.

Sec. 91.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 97A.475, subdivision 3, is amended to read:

Subd. 3.

Nonresident hunting.

(a) Fees for the following licenses, to be issued to nonresidents, are:

(1) for persons age 18 and older to take small game, $73;

(2) for persons age 18 and older to take deer with firearms, $135;

(3) for persons age 18 and older to take deer by archery, the greater of:

(i) an amount equal to the total amount of license fees and surcharges charged to a Minnesota resident to take deer by archery in the person's state or province of residence; or

(ii) $135;

(4) to take bear, $195;

(5) to take turkey, $73;

(6) to take raccoon, or bobcat, fox, or coyote, $155;

(7) multizone license to take antlered deer in more than one zone, $270; and

(8) to take Canada geese during a special season, $4;

(9) for persons at least age 12 and under age 18 to take deer with firearms during the regular firearms season in any open zone or time period, $13; and

(10) for persons at least age 12 and under age 18 to take deer by archery, $13.

(b) A $5 surcharge shall be added to nonresident hunting licenses issued under paragraph (a), clauses (1) to (7). An additional commission may not be assessed on this surcharge.

Sec. 92.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 97A.475, is amended by adding a subdivision to read:

Subd. 3a.

Deer license surcharge.

A person may agree to add a donation of $1, $3, or $5 to the fees for annual resident and nonresident licenses to take deer by firearms or archery established under subdivisions 2, clauses (4), (5), (9), and (11), and 3, clauses (2), (3), and (7). Beginning March 1, 2008, fees for bonus licenses to take deer by firearms or archery established under section 97B.301, subdivision 4, must be increased by a surcharge of $1. An additional commission may not be assessed on the donation or surcharge and the following statement must be included in the annual deer hunting regulations: "The deer license donations and surcharges are being paid by hunters for deer management, including assisting with the costs of processing deer donated for charitable purposes."

Sec. 93.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 97A.475, subdivision 7, is amended to read:

Subd. 7.

Nonresident fishing.

(a) Fees for the following licenses, to be issued to nonresidents, are:

(1) to take fish by angling, $34 $37.50;

(2) to take fish by angling limited to seven consecutive days selected by the licensee, $24 $26.50;

(3) to take fish by angling for a 72-hour period selected by the licensee, $20 $22;

(4) to take fish by angling for a combined license for a family for one or both parents and dependent children under the age of 16, $46 $50.50;

(5) to take fish by angling for a 24-hour period selected by the licensee, $8.50; and

(6) to take fish by angling for a combined license for a married couple, limited to 14 consecutive days selected by one of the licensees, $35 $38.50.

(b) A $2 surcharge shall be added to all nonresident fishing licenses, except licenses issued under paragraph (a), clause (5). An additional commission may not be assessed on this surcharge.

EFFECTIVE DATE.

This section is effective March 1, 2008.

Sec. 94.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 97A.475, subdivision 11, is amended to read:

Subd. 11.

Fish houses and dark houses; residents.

Fees for the following licenses are:

(1) annual for a fish house or dark house that is not rented, $11.50; and

(2) annual for a fish house or dark house that is rented, $26;

(3) three-year for a fish house or dark house that is not rented, $34.50; and

(4) three-year for a fish house or dark house that is rented, $78.

Sec. 95.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 97A.475, subdivision 12, is amended to read:

Subd. 12.

Fish houses; nonresident.

Fees for fish house licenses for a nonresident are:

(1) annual, $33; and

(2) seven consecutive days, $19; and

(3) three-year, $99.

Sec. 96.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 97A.485, subdivision 7, is amended to read:

Subd. 7.

Electronic licensing system commission.

The commissioner shall retain for the operation of the electronic licensing system the commission established under section 84.027, subdivision 15, and issuing fees collected by the commissioner on all license fees collected, excluding:

(1) the small game surcharge; and

(2) the deer license surcharges or donations under section 97A.475, subdivisions 3, paragraph (b), and 3a; and

(3) $2.50 of the license fee for the licenses in section 97A.475, subdivisions 6, clauses (1), (2), and (4), 7, 8, 12, and 13.

Sec. 97.

[97B.303] VENISON DONATIONS.

An individual who legally takes a deer may donate the deer, for distribution to charitable food assistance programs, to a meat processor that is licensed under chapter 28A. An individual donating a deer must supply the processor with the tag number under which the deer was taken.

Sec. 98.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 97B.601, subdivision 3, is amended to read:

Subd. 3.

Nonresidents: raccoon, or bobcat, fox, coyote.

A nonresident may not take raccoon, or bobcat, fox, or coyote by firearms without a separate license to take that animal in addition to a small game license.

Sec. 99.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 97B.715, subdivision 1, is amended to read:

Subdivision 1.

Stamp required.

(a) Except as provided in paragraph (b) or section 97A.405, subdivision 2, a person required to possess a small game license may not hunt pheasants without:

(1) a pheasant stamp in possession; and

(2) a pheasant stamp validation on the small game license when issued electronically.

(b) The following persons are exempt from this subdivision:

(1) residents under age 18 or over age 65;

(2) persons hunting on licensed commercial shooting preserves; and

(3) resident disabled veterans with a license issued under section 97A.441, subdivision 6a.

Sec. 100.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 97B.801, is amended to read:

97B.801 MINNESOTA MIGRATORY WATERFOWL STAMP REQUIRED.

(a) Except as provided in this section or section 97A.405, subdivision 2, a person required to possess a small game license may not take migratory waterfowl without:

(1) a Minnesota migratory waterfowl stamp in possession; and

(2) a migratory waterfowl stamp validation on the small game license when issued electronically.

(b) Residents under age 18 or over age 65; resident disabled veterans with a license issued under section 97A.441, subdivision 6a; and persons hunting on their own property are not required to possess a stamp or a license validation under this section.

Sec. 101.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 97C.081, subdivision 3, is amended to read:

Subd. 3.

Contests requiring a permit.

(a) A person must have a permit from the commissioner to conduct a fishing contest that does not meet the criteria in subdivision 2. Permits shall be issued without a fee. The commissioner shall charge a fee for the permit that recovers the costs of issuing the permit and of monitoring the activities allowed by the permit. The commissioner may waive the fee under this subdivision for a charitable organization. Notwithstanding section 16A.1283, the commissioner may, by written order published in the State Register, establish contest permit fees. The fees are not subject to the rulemaking provisions of chapter 14 and section 14.386 does not apply.

(b) If entry fees are over $25 per person, or total prizes are valued at more than $25,000, and if the applicant has either:

(1) not previously conducted a fishing contest requiring a permit under this subdivision; or

(2) ever failed to make required prize awards in a fishing contest conducted by the applicant, the commissioner may require the applicant to furnish the commissioner evidence of financial responsibility in the form of a surety bond or bank letter of credit in the amount of $25,000.

(c) The permit fee for any individual contest may not exceed the following amounts:

(1) $120 for an open water contest not exceeding 100 participants and without off-site weigh-in;

(2) $400 for an open water contest with more than 100 participants and without off-site weigh-in;

(3) $500 for an open water contest not exceeding 100 participants with off-site weigh-in;

(4) $1,000 for an open water contest with more than 100 participants with off-site weigh-in; or

(5) $120 for an ice fishing contest with more than 150 participants.

Sec. 102.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 97C.355, subdivision 2, is amended to read:

Subd. 2.

License required.

A person may not take fish from a dark house or fish house that is left unattended on the ice overnight unless the house is licensed and has a license tag attached to the exterior in a readily visible location, except as provided in this subdivision. The commissioner must issue a tag with a dark house or fish house license, marked with a number to correspond with the license and the year of issue. A dark house or fish house license is not required of a resident on boundary waters where the adjacent state does not charge a fee for the same activity.

Sec. 103.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 103B.101, is amended by adding a subdivision to read:

Subd. 12.

Authority to issue penalty orders.

(a) The board may issue an order requiring violations to be corrected and administratively assessing monetary penalties of up to $10,000 per violation for violations of this chapter and chapters 103C, 103D, 103E, 103F, and 103G, any rules adopted under those chapters, and any standards, limitations, or conditions established by the board.

(b) Administrative penalties issued under paragraph (a) may be appealed according to section 116.072, if the recipient of the penalty requests a hearing by notifying the commissioner in writing within 30 days after receipt of the order. For the purposes of this section, the terms "commissioner" and "agency" as used in section 116.072 mean the board. If a hearing is not requested within the 30-day period, the order becomes a final order not subject to further review.

(c) Administrative penalty orders issued under paragraph (a) may be enforced under section 116.072, subdivision 9. Penalty amounts must be remitted within 30 days of issuance of the order.

EFFECTIVE DATE.

This section is effective the day following final enactment.

Sec. 104.

[103B.102] LOCAL WATER MANAGEMENT ACCOUNTABILITY AND OVERSIGHT.

Subdivision 1.

Findings; improving accountability and oversight.

The legislature finds that a process is needed to monitor the performance and activities of local water management entities. The process should be preemptive so that problems can be identified early and systematically. Underperforming entities should be provided assistance and direction for improving performance in a reasonable time frame.

Subd. 2.

Definitions.

For the purposes of this section, "local water management entities" means watershed districts, soil and water conservation districts, metropolitan water management organizations, and counties operating separately or jointly in their role as local water management authorities under chapter 103B, 103C, 103D, or 103G and chapter 114D.

Subd. 3.

Evaluation and report.

The Board of Water and Soil Resources shall evaluate performance, financial, and activity information for each local water management entity. The board shall evaluate the entities' progress in accomplishing their adopted plans on a regular basis, but not less than once every five years. The board shall maintain a summary of local water management entity performance on the board's Web site. Beginning February 1, 2008, and annually thereafter, the board shall provide an analysis of local water management entity performance to the chairs of the house and senate committees having jurisdiction over environment and natural resources policy.

Subd. 4.

Corrective actions.

(a) In addition to other authorities, the Board of Water and Soil Resources may, based on its evaluation in subdivision 3, reduce, withhold, or redirect grants and other funding if the local water management entity has not corrected deficiencies as prescribed in a notice from the board within one year from the date of the notice.

(b) The board may defer a decision on a termination petition filed under section 103B.221, 103C.225, or 103D.271 for up to one year to conduct or update the evaluation under subdivision 3 or to communicate the results of the evaluation to petitioners or to local and state government agencies.

Sec. 105.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 103C.321, is amended by adding a subdivision to read:

Subd. 6.

Credit card use.

The supervisors may authorize the use of a credit card by any soil and water conservation district officer or employee otherwise authorized to make a purchase on behalf of the soil and water conservation district. If a soil and water conservation district officer or employee makes a purchase by credit card that is not approved by the supervisors, the officer or employee is personally liable for the amount of the purchase. A purchase by credit card must otherwise comply with all statutes, rules, or soil and water conservation district policy applicable to soil and water conservation district purchases.

Sec. 106.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 103D.325, is amended by adding a subdivision to read:

Subd. 4.

Credit card use.

The managers may authorize the use of a credit card by any watershed district officer or employee otherwise authorized to make a purchase on behalf of the watershed district. If a watershed district officer or employee makes a purchase by credit card that is not approved by the managers, the officer or employee is personally liable for the amount of the purchase. A purchase by credit card must otherwise comply with all statutes, rules, or watershed district policy applicable to watershed district purchases.

Sec. 107.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 103E.021, subdivision 1, is amended to read:

Subdivision 1.

Spoil banks must be spread and grass planted permanent vegetation established.

In any proceeding to establish, construct, improve, or do any work affecting a public drainage system under any law that appoints viewers to assess benefits and damages, the authority having jurisdiction over the proceeding shall order spoil banks to be spread consistent with the plan and function of the drainage system. The authority shall order that permanent grass, other than a noxious weed, be planted on the banks ditch side slopes and on a strip that a permanent strip of perennial vegetation approved by the drainage authority be established on each side of the ditch. Preference should be given to planting native species of a local ecotype. The approved perennial vegetation shall not impede future maintenance of the ditch. The permanent strips of perennial vegetation shall be 16-1/2 feet in width measured outward from the top edge of the constructed channel resulting from the proceeding, or to the crown of the leveled spoil bank, whichever is the greater, on each side of the top edge of the channel of the ditch. except for an action by a drainage authority that results only in a redetermination of benefits and damages, for which the required width shall be 16-1/2 feet. Drainage system rights-of-way for the acreage and additional property required for the planting permanent strips must be acquired by the authority having jurisdiction.

Sec. 108.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 103E.021, subdivision 2, is amended to read:

Subd. 2.

Reseeding and harvesting grass perennial vegetation.

The authority having jurisdiction over the repair and maintenance of the drainage system shall supervise all necessary reseeding. The permanent grass strips of perennial vegetation must be maintained in the same manner as other drainage system repairs. Harvest of the grass vegetation from the grass permanent strip in a manner not harmful to the grass vegetation or the drainage system is the privilege of the fee owner or assigns. The county drainage inspector shall establish rules for the fee owner and assigns to harvest the grass vegetation.

Sec. 109.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 103E.021, subdivision 3, is amended to read:

Subd. 3.

Agricultural practices prohibited.

Agricultural practices, other than those required for the maintenance of a permanent growth of grass perennial vegetation, are not permitted on any portion of the property acquired for planting perennial vegetation.

Sec. 110.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 103E.021, is amended by adding a subdivision to read:

Subd. 6.

Incremental implementation of vegetated ditch buffer strips and side inlet controls.

(a) Notwithstanding other provisions of this chapter requiring appointment of viewers and redetermination of benefits and damages, a drainage authority may implement permanent buffer strips of perennial vegetation approved by the drainage authority or side inlet controls, or both, adjacent to a public drainage ditch, where necessary to control erosion and sedimentation, improve water quality, or maintain the efficiency of the drainage system. Preference should be given to planting native species of a local ecotype. The approved perennial vegetation shall not impede future maintenance of the ditch. The permanent strips of perennial vegetation shall be 16-1/2 feet in width measured outward from the top edge of the existing constructed channel. Drainage system rights-of-way for the acreage and additional property required for the permanent strips must be acquired by the authority having jurisdiction.

(b) A project under this subdivision shall be implemented as a repair according to section 103E.705, except that the drainage authority may appoint an engineer to examine the drainage system and prepare an engineer's repair report for the project.

(c) Damages shall be determined by the drainage authority, or viewers, appointed by the drainage authority, according to section 103E.315, subdivision 8. A damages statement shall be prepared, including an explanation of how the damages were determined for each property affected by the project, and filed with the auditor or watershed district. Within 30 days after the damages statement is filed, the auditor or watershed district shall prepare property owners' reports according to section 103E.323, subdivision 1, clauses (1), (2), (6), (7), and (8), and mail a copy of the property owner's report and damages statement to each owner of property affected by the proposed project.

(d) After a damages statement is filed, the drainage authority shall set a time, by order, not more than 30 days after the date of the order, for a hearing on the project. At least ten days before the hearing, the auditor or watershed district shall give notice by mail of the time and location of the hearing to the owners of property and political subdivisions likely to be affected by the project.

(e) The drainage authority shall make findings and order the repairs to be made if the drainage authority determines from the evidence presented at the hearing and by the viewers and engineer, if appointed, that the repairs are necessary for the drainage system and the costs of the repairs are within the limitations of section 103E.705.

Sec. 111.

[103E.067] DITCH BUFFER STRIP ANNUAL REPORTING.

The drainage authority shall annually submit a report to the Board of Water and Soil Resources for the calendar year including:

(1) the number and types of actions for which viewers were appointed;

(2) the number of miles of buffer strips established according to section 103E.021;

(3) the number of drainage system inspections conducted; and

(4) the number of violations of section 103E.021 identified and enforcement actions taken.

Sec. 112.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 103E.315, subdivision 8, is amended to read:

Subd. 8.

Extent of damages.

Damages to be paid may include:

(1) the fair market value of the property required for the channel of an open ditch and the permanent grass strip of perennial vegetation under section 103E.021;

(2) the diminished value of a farm due to severing a field by an open ditch;

(3) loss of crop production during drainage project construction; and

(4) the diminished productivity or land value from increased overflow.; and

(5) costs to restore a perennial vegetative cover or structural practice existing under a federal or state conservation program adjacent to the permanent drainage system right-of-way and damaged by the drainage project.

Sec. 113.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 103E.321, subdivision 1, is amended to read:

Subdivision 1.

Requirements.

The viewers' report must show, in tabular form, for each lot, 40-acre tract, and fraction of a lot or tract under separate ownership that is benefited or damaged:

(1) a description of the lot or tract, under separate ownership, that is benefited or damaged;

(2) the names of the owners as they appear on the current tax records of the county and their addresses;

(3) the number of acres in each tract or lot;

(4) the number and value of acres added to a tract or lot by the proposed drainage of public waters;

(5) the damage, if any, to riparian rights;

(6) the damages paid for the permanent grass strip of perennial vegetation under section 103E.021;

(7) the total number and value of acres added to a tract or lot by the proposed drainage of public waters, wetlands, and other areas not currently being cultivated;

(8) the number of acres and amount of benefits being assessed for drainage of areas which before the drainage benefits could be realized would require a public waters work permit to work in public waters under section 103G.245 to excavate or fill a navigable water body under United States Code, title 33, section 403, or a permit to discharge into waters of the United States under United States Code, title 33, section 1344;

(9) the number of acres and amount of benefits being assessed for drainage of areas that would be considered conversion of a wetland under United States Code, title 16, section 3821, if the area was placed in agricultural production;

(10) the amount of right-of-way acreage required; and

(11) the amount that each tract or lot will be benefited or damaged.

Sec. 114.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 103E.701, is amended by adding a subdivision to read:

Subd. 7.

Restoration; disturbance or destruction by repair.

If a drainage system repair disturbs or destroys a perennial vegetative cover or structural practice existing under a federal or state conservation program adjacent to the permanent drainage system right-of-way, the practice must be restored according to the applicable practice plan or as determined by the drainage authority, if a practice plan is not available. Restoration costs shall be paid by the drainage system.

Sec. 115.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 103E.705, subdivision 1, is amended to read:

Subdivision 1.

Inspection.

After the construction of a drainage system has been completed, the drainage authority shall maintain the drainage system that is located in its jurisdiction, including grass the permanent strips of perennial vegetation under section 103E.021, and provide the repairs necessary to make the drainage system efficient. The drainage authority shall have the drainage system inspected on a regular basis by an inspection committee of the drainage authority or a drainage inspector appointed by the drainage authority. Open drainage ditches shall be inspected at a minimum of every five years when no violation of section 103E.021 is found and annually when a violation of section 103E.021 is found, until one year after the violation is corrected.

Sec. 116.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 103E.705, subdivision 2, is amended to read:

Subd. 2.

Grass Permanent strip of perennial vegetation inspection and compliance notice.

(a) The drainage authority having jurisdiction over a drainage system must inspect the drainage system for violations of section 103E.021. If an inspection committee of the drainage authority or a drainage inspector determines that permanent grass strips of perennial vegetation are not being maintained in compliance with section 103E.021, a compliance notice must be sent to the property owner.

(b) The notice must state:

(1) the date the ditch was inspected;

(2) the persons making the inspection;

(3) that spoil banks are to be spread in a manner consistent with the plan and function of the drainage system and that the drainage system has acquired a grass permanent strip 16-1/2 feet in width or to the crown of the spoil bank, whichever is greater of perennial vegetation, according to section 103E.021;

(4) the violations of section 103E.021;

(5) the measures that must be taken by the property owner to comply with section 103E.021 and the date when the property must be in compliance; and

(6) that if the property owner does not comply by the date specified, the drainage authority will perform the work necessary to bring the area into compliance with section 103E.021 and charge the cost of the work to the property owner.

(c) If a property owner does not bring an area into compliance with section 103E.021 as provided in the compliance notice, the inspection committee or drainage inspector must notify the drainage authority.

(d) This subdivision applies to property acquired under section 103E.021.

Sec. 117.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 103E.705, subdivision 3, is amended to read:

Subd. 3.

Drainage inspection report.

For each drainage system that the board designates and requires the drainage inspector to examine, the drainage inspector shall make a drainage inspection report in writing to the board after examining a drainage system, designating portions that need repair or maintenance of grass the permanent strips of perennial vegetation and the location and nature of the repair or maintenance. The board shall consider the drainage inspection report at its next meeting and may repair all or any part of the drainage system as provided under this chapter. The grass permanent strips of perennial vegetation must be maintained in compliance with section 103E.021.

Sec. 118.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 103E.728, subdivision 2, is amended to read:

Subd. 2.

Additional assessment for agricultural practices on grass permanent strip of perennial vegetation.

(a) The drainage authority may, after notice and hearing, charge an additional assessment on property that has agricultural practices on or otherwise violates provisions related to the permanent grass strip of perennial vegetation acquired under section 103E.021.

(b) The drainage authority may determine the cost of the repair per mile of open ditch on the ditch system. Property that is in violation of the grass requirement shall be assessed a cost of 20 percent of the repair cost per open ditch mile multiplied by the length of open ditch in miles on the property in violation.

(c) After the amount of the additional assessment is determined and applied to the repair cost, the balance of the repair cost may be apportioned pro rata as provided in subdivision 1.

Sec. 119.

[103F.518] REINVEST IN MINNESOTA CLEAN ENERGY PROGRAM.

Subdivision 1.

Establishment of program.

(a) The board, in consultation with the technical committee established in subdivision 11, shall establish and administer a reinvest in Minnesota (RIM) clean energy program that is in addition to the program under section 103F.515. Selection of land for the clean energy program must be based on its potential benefits for bioenergy crop production, water quality, soil health, reduction of chemical inputs, soil carbon storage, biodiversity, and wildlife habitat.

(b) For the purposes of this section, "diverse native prairie" means a prairie planted from a mix of local Minnesota native prairie species. A selection from all available native prairie species may be made so as to match species appropriate to local site conditions.

Subd. 2.

Eligible land.

Eligible land under this section must:

(1) be owned by the landowner, or a parent or other blood relative of the landowner, for at least one year before the date of application;

(2) be at least five acres in size;

(3) not be currently set aside, enrolled, or diverted under another federal or state government program; and

(4) have been in agricultural use, as defined in section 17.81, subdivision 4, or have been set aside, enrolled, or diverted under another federal or state program for at least two of the last five years before the date of application.

Subd. 3.

Designation of project areas.

The board shall develop a process to designate defined project areas. The designation process shall prioritize projects that include coordinated cooperation of a cellulosic biofuel facility or a bioenergy production facility, target impaired waters, or support other state or local natural resource plans, goals, or objectives.

Subd. 4.

Easements.

The board may acquire, or accept by gift or donation, easements on eligible land. An easement may be permanent or of limited duration. An easement of limited duration may not be acquired if it is for a period less than 20 years. The negotiation and acquisition of easements authorized by this section are exempt from the contractual provisions of chapters 16B and 16C.

Subd. 5.

Nature of property rights acquired.

(a) An easement must prohibit:

(1) agricultural crop production, unless approved by the board for energy production purposes; and

(2) spraying with chemicals, except as necessary to comply with noxious weed control laws, emergency pest control necessary to protect public health, or as needed to establish a productive planting as determined by the technical committee under subdivision 11.

(b) An easement is subject to the terms of the agreement provided in subdivision 6.

(c) Agricultural crop production and harvest are limited to native, perennial bioenergy crops. Harvest shall occur outside of bird nesting season.

(d) An easement must allow repairs, improvements, and inspections necessary to maintain public drainage systems provided the easement area is restored to the condition required by the terms of the easement.

(e) An easement may allow nonnative perennial prairie or pasture established by September 1, 2007, that meet the other objectives outlined in subdivision 7.

(f) An easement may allow grazing of livestock only if practiced under a plan, approved by the board, that protects water quality, wildlife habitat, and biodiversity.

Subd. 6.

Agreements by landowner.

The board may enroll eligible land in the reinvest in Minnesota clean energy program by signing an agreement in recordable form with a landowner in which the landowner agrees:

(1) to convey to the state an easement that is not subject to any prior title, lien, or encumbrance;

(2) to seed the land subject to the easement, as specified in the agreement, at seeding rates determined by the board, or carry out other long-term capital improvements approved by the board; and

(3) that the easement duration may be lengthened through mutual agreement with the board.

Subd. 7.

Payments for easements.

The board must develop a tiered payment system for easements partially based on the benefits of the bioenergy crop production for water quality, soil health, reduction in chemical inputs, soil carbon storage, biodiversity, and wildlife habitat using cash rent or a similar system as may be determined by the board. The payment system must provide that the highest per-acre payment is for diverse native prairie and perennials.

Subd. 8.

Easement renewal.

When an easement of limited duration expires, a new easement and agreement for an additional period of not less than 20 years may be acquired by agreement of the board and the landowner under the terms of this section. The board may adjust payment rates as a result of renewing an agreement and easement only after examining the condition of the established plantings, conservation practices, and land values.

Subd. 9.

Correction of easement boundary lines.

To correct errors in legal descriptions for easements that affect the ownership interest in the state and adjacent landowners, the board may, in the name of the state, with the approval of the attorney general, convey, without consideration, interests of the state necessary to correct legal descriptions of boundaries. The conveyance must be by quitclaim deed or release in a form approved by the attorney general.

Subd. 10.

Enforcement and damages.

(a) A landowner who violates the term of an easement or agreement under this section, or induces, assists, or allows another to do so, is liable to the state for treble damages if the trespass is willful, but liable for double damages only if the trespass is not willful. The amount of damages is the amount needed to make the state whole or the amount the landowner has gained due to the violation, whichever is greater.

(b) Upon the request of the board, the attorney general may commence an action for specific performances, injunctive relief, damages, including attorney fees, and any other appropriate relief to enforce this section in district court in the county where all or part of the violation is alleged to have been committed, or where the landowner resides or has a principal place of business.

Subd. 11.

Technical committee.

To ensure that public benefits, including water quality, soil health, reduction of chemical inputs, soil carbon storage, biodiversity, and wildlife habitat are secured along with bioenergy crop production, the Board of Water and Soil Resources shall appoint a technical committee consisting of one representative from the Departments of Agriculture, Natural Resources, and Commerce and the Pollution Control Agency; two farm organizations; one sustainable agriculture farmer organization; three rural economic development organizations; three environmental organizations; and three conservation or wildlife organizations. The board and technical committee shall consult with private sector organizations and University of Minnesota researchers involved in biomass establishment and bioenergy or biofuel conversion. The technical committee is to develop program guidelines and standards, as appropriate to ensure that reinvest in Minnesota clean energy program contracts provide public benefits commensurate with the public investment. The technical committee shall review and make recommendations on the guidelines and standards every five years.

Sec. 120.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 103G.222, subdivision 1, is amended to read:

Subdivision 1.

Requirements.

(a) Wetlands must not be drained or filled, wholly or partially, unless replaced by restoring or creating wetland areas of at least equal public value under a replacement plan approved as provided in section 103G.2242, a replacement plan under a local governmental unit's comprehensive wetland protection and management plan approved by the board under section 103G.2243, or, if a permit to mine is required under section 93.481, under a mining reclamation plan approved by the commissioner under the permit to mine. Mining reclamation plans shall apply the same principles and standards for replacing wetlands by restoration or creation of wetland areas that are applicable to mitigation plans approved as provided in section 103G.2242. Public value must be determined in accordance with section 103B.3355 or a comprehensive wetland protection and management plan established under section 103G.2243. Sections 103G.221 to 103G.2372 also apply to excavation in permanently and semipermanently flooded areas of types 3, 4, and 5 wetlands.

(b) Replacement must be guided by the following principles in descending order of priority:

(1) avoiding the direct or indirect impact of the activity that may destroy or diminish the wetland;

(2) minimizing the impact by limiting the degree or magnitude of the wetland activity and its implementation;

(3) rectifying the impact by repairing, rehabilitating, or restoring the affected wetland environment;

(4) reducing or eliminating the impact over time by preservation and maintenance operations during the life of the activity;

(5) compensating for the impact by restoring a wetland; and

(6) compensating for the impact by replacing or providing substitute wetland resources or environments.

For a project involving the draining or filling of wetlands in an amount not exceeding 10,000 square feet more than the applicable amount in section 103G.2241, subdivision 9, paragraph (a), the local government unit may make an on-site sequencing determination without a written alternatives analysis from the applicant.

(c) If a wetland is located in a cultivated field, then replacement must be accomplished through restoration only without regard to the priority order in paragraph (b), provided that a deed restriction is placed on the altered wetland prohibiting nonagricultural use for at least ten years.

(d) If a wetland is drained under section 103G.2241, subdivision 2, paragraphs (b) and (e), the local government unit may require a deed restriction that prohibits nonagricultural use for at least ten years unless the drained wetland is replaced as provided under this section. The local government unit may require the deed restriction if it determines the wetland area drained is at risk of conversion to a nonagricultural use within ten years based on the zoning classification, proximity to a municipality or full service road, or other criteria as determined by the local government unit.

(e) Restoration and replacement of wetlands must be accomplished in accordance with the ecology of the landscape area affected and ponds that are created primarily to fulfill stormwater management, and water quality treatment requirements may not be used to satisfy replacement requirements under this chapter unless the design includes pretreatment of runoff and the pond is functioning as a wetland.

(e) (f) Except as provided in paragraph (f) (g), for a wetland or public waters wetland located on nonagricultural land, replacement must be in the ratio of two acres of replaced wetland for each acre of drained or filled wetland.

(f) (g) For a wetland or public waters wetland located on agricultural land or in a greater than 80 percent area, replacement must be in the ratio of one acre of replaced wetland for each acre of drained or filled wetland.

(g) (h) Wetlands that are restored or created as a result of an approved replacement plan are subject to the provisions of this section for any subsequent drainage or filling.

(h) (i) Except in a greater than 80 percent area, only wetlands that have been restored from previously drained or filled wetlands, wetlands created by excavation in nonwetlands, wetlands created by dikes or dams along public or private drainage ditches, or wetlands created by dikes or dams associated with the restoration of previously drained or filled wetlands may be used in a statewide banking program established in rules adopted under section 103G.2242, subdivision 1. Modification or conversion of nondegraded naturally occurring wetlands from one type to another are not eligible for enrollment in a statewide wetlands bank.

(i) (j) The Technical Evaluation Panel established under section 103G.2242, subdivision 2, shall ensure that sufficient time has occurred for the wetland to develop wetland characteristics of soils, vegetation, and hydrology before recommending that the wetland be deposited in the statewide wetland bank. If the Technical Evaluation Panel has reason to believe that the wetland characteristics may change substantially, the panel shall postpone its recommendation until the wetland has stabilized.

(j) (k) This section and sections 103G.223 to 103G.2242, 103G.2364, and 103G.2365 apply to the state and its departments and agencies.

(k) (l) For projects involving draining or filling of wetlands associated with a new public transportation project, and for projects expanded solely for additional traffic capacity, public transportation authorities may purchase credits from the board at the cost to the board to establish credits. Proceeds from the sale of credits provided under this paragraph are appropriated to the board for the purposes of this paragraph.

(l) (m) A replacement plan for wetlands is not required for individual projects that result in the filling or draining of wetlands for the repair, rehabilitation, reconstruction, or replacement of a currently serviceable existing state, city, county, or town public road necessary, as determined by the public transportation authority, to meet state or federal design or safety standards or requirements, excluding new roads or roads expanded solely for additional traffic capacity lanes. This paragraph only applies to authorities for public transportation projects that:

(1) minimize the amount of wetland filling or draining associated with the project and consider mitigating important site-specific wetland functions on-site;

(2) except as provided in clause (3), submit project-specific reports to the board, the Technical Evaluation Panel, the commissioner of natural resources, and members of the public requesting a copy at least 30 days prior to construction that indicate the location, amount, and type of wetlands to be filled or drained by the project or, alternatively, convene an annual meeting of the parties required to receive notice to review projects to be commenced during the upcoming year; and

(3) for minor and emergency maintenance work impacting less than 10,000 square feet, submit project-specific reports, within 30 days of commencing the activity, to the board that indicate the location, amount, and type of wetlands that have been filled or drained.

Those required to receive notice of public transportation projects may appeal minimization, delineation, and on-site mitigation decisions made by the public transportation authority to the board according to the provisions of section 103G.2242, subdivision 9. The Technical Evaluation Panel shall review minimization and delineation decisions made by the public transportation authority and provide recommendations regarding on-site mitigation if requested to do so by the local government unit, a contiguous landowner, or a member of the Technical Evaluation Panel.

Except for state public transportation projects, for which the state Department of Transportation is responsible, the board must replace the wetlands, and wetland areas of public waters if authorized by the commissioner or a delegated authority, drained or filled by public transportation projects on existing roads.

Public transportation authorities at their discretion may deviate from federal and state design standards on existing road projects when practical and reasonable to avoid wetland filling or draining, provided that public safety is not unreasonably compromised. The local road authority and its officers and employees are exempt from liability for any tort claim for injury to persons or property arising from travel on the highway and related to the deviation from the design standards for construction or reconstruction under this paragraph. This paragraph does not preclude an action for damages arising from negligence in construction or maintenance on a highway.

(m) (n) If a landowner seeks approval of a replacement plan after the proposed project has already affected the wetland, the local government unit may require the landowner to replace the affected wetland at a ratio not to exceed twice the replacement ratio otherwise required.

(n) (o) A local government unit may request the board to reclassify a county or watershed on the basis of its percentage of presettlement wetlands remaining. After receipt of satisfactory documentation from the local government, the board shall change the classification of a county or watershed. If requested by the local government unit, the board must assist in developing the documentation. Within 30 days of its action to approve a change of wetland classifications, the board shall publish a notice of the change in the Environmental Quality Board Monitor.

(o) (p) One hundred citizens who reside within the jurisdiction of the local government unit may request the local government unit to reclassify a county or watershed on the basis of its percentage of presettlement wetlands remaining. In support of their petition, the citizens shall provide satisfactory documentation to the local government unit. The local government unit shall consider the petition and forward the request to the board under paragraph (n) (o) or provide a reason why the petition is denied.

EFFECTIVE DATE.

This section is effective the day following final enactment.

Sec. 121.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 103G.222, subdivision 3, is amended to read:

Subd. 3.

Wetland replacement siting.

(a) Siting wetland replacement must follow this priority order:

(1) on site or in the same minor watershed as the affected wetland;

(2) in the same watershed as the affected wetland;

(3) in the same county as the affected wetland;

(4) for replacement by wetland banking, in the same wetland bank service area as the impacted wetland, except that impacts in a 50 to 80 percent area must be replaced in a 50 to 80 percent area and impacts in a less than 50 percent area must be replaced in a less than 50 percent area;

(5) for project specific replacement, in an adjacent watershed or county to the affected wetland, or for replacement by wetland banking, in an adjacent wetland bank service area, except that impacts in a 50 to 80 percent area must be replaced in a 50 to 80 percent area and impacts in a less than 50 percent area must be replaced in a less than 50 percent area; and

(5) (6) statewide, only for wetlands affected in greater than 80 percent areas and for public transportation projects, except that wetlands affected in less than 50 percent areas must be replaced in less than 50 percent areas, and wetlands affected in the seven-county metropolitan area must be replaced at a ratio of two to one in: (i) the affected county or, (ii) in another of the seven metropolitan counties, or (iii) in one of the major watersheds that are wholly or partially within the seven-county metropolitan area, but at least one to one must be replaced within the seven-county metropolitan area.

(b) Notwithstanding paragraph (a), siting wetland replacement in greater than 80 percent areas may follow the priority order under this paragraph: (1) by wetland banking after evaluating on-site replacement and replacement within the watershed; (2) replaced in an adjacent wetland bank service area if wetland bank credits are not reasonably available in the same wetland bank service area as the affected wetland, as determined by a comprehensive inventory approved by the board; and (3) statewide.

(c) Notwithstanding paragraph (a), siting wetland replacement in the seven-county metropolitan area must follow the priority order under this paragraph: (1) in the affected county; (2) in another of the seven metropolitan counties; or (3) in one of the major watersheds that are wholly or partially within the seven-county metropolitan area, but at least one to one must be replaced within the seven-county metropolitan area.

(d) The exception in paragraph (a), clause (5) (6), does not apply to replacement completed using wetland banking credits established by a person who submitted a complete wetland banking application to a local government unit by April 1, 1996.

(c) (e) When reasonable, practicable, and environmentally beneficial replacement opportunities are not available in siting priorities listed in paragraph (a), the applicant may seek opportunities at the next level.

(d) (f) For the purposes of this section, "reasonable, practicable, and environmentally beneficial replacement opportunities" are defined as opportunities that:

(1) take advantage of naturally occurring hydrogeomorphological conditions and require minimal landscape alteration;

(2) have a high likelihood of becoming a functional wetland that will continue in perpetuity;

(3) do not adversely affect other habitat types or ecological communities that are important in maintaining the overall biological diversity of the area; and

(4) are available and capable of being done after taking into consideration cost, existing technology, and logistics consistent with overall project purposes.

(e) (g) Regulatory agencies, local government units, and other entities involved in wetland restoration shall collaborate to identify potential replacement opportunities within their jurisdictional areas.

EFFECTIVE DATE.

This section is effective the day following final enactment.

Sec. 122.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 103G.2241, subdivision 1, is amended to read:

Subdivision 1.

Agricultural activities.

(a) A replacement plan for wetlands is not required for:

(1) activities in a wetland that was planted with annually seeded crops, was in a crop rotation seeding of pasture grass or legumes, or was required to be set aside to receive price support or other payments under United States Code, title 7, sections 1421 to 1469, in six of the last ten years prior to January 1, 1991;

(2) activities in a wetland that is or has been enrolled in the federal conservation reserve program under United States Code, title 16, section 3831, that:

(i) was planted with annually seeded crops, was in a crop rotation seeding, or was required to be set aside to receive price support or payment under United States Code, title 7, sections 1421 to 1469, in six of the last ten years prior to being enrolled in the program; and

(ii) has not been restored with assistance from a public or private wetland restoration program;

(3) activities in a wetland that has received a commenced drainage determination provided for by the federal Food Security Act of 1985, that was made to the county Agricultural Stabilization and Conservation Service office prior to September 19, 1988, and a ruling and any subsequent appeals or reviews have determined that drainage of the wetland had been commenced prior to December 23, 1985;

(4) (2) activities in a type 1 wetland on agricultural pasture land that remains in the same use, except for bottomland hardwood type 1 wetlands, and activities in a type 2 or type 6 wetland that is less than two acres in size and located on agricultural pasture land that remains in the same use;

(3) activities in a wetland conducted as part of normal farming practices. For purposes of this clause, "normal farming practices" means farming, silvicultural, grazing, and ranching activities such as plowing, seeding, cultivating, and harvesting for the production of feed, food, and fiber products, but does not include activities that result in the draining of wetlands;

(4) soil and water conservation practices approved by the soil and water conservation district, after review by the Technical Evaluation Panel;

(5) aquaculture activities including pond excavation and construction and maintenance of associated access roads and dikes authorized under, and conducted in accordance with, a permit 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, but not including construction or expansion of buildings;

(6) wild rice production activities, including necessary diking and other activities authorized under a permit 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; or

(7) normal agricultural practices to control noxious or secondary weeds as defined by rule of the commissioner of agriculture, in accordance with applicable requirements under state and federal law, including established best management practices; and

(8) (7) agricultural activities in a wetland that is on agricultural land:

(i) annually enrolled in the federal Agriculture Improvement and Reform Act of 1996 and is subject to United States Code, title 16, sections 3821 to 3823, in effect on January 1, 2000; or

(ii) that is subject to subsequent federal farm program restrictions that meet minimum state standards under this chapter and sections 103A.202 and 103B.3355 and that have been approved by the Board of Water and Soil Resources, the commissioners of natural resources and agriculture, and the Pollution Control Agency.

(b) Land enrolled in a federal farm program under paragraph (a), clause (8), is eligible for easement participation for those acres not already compensated under a federal program.

(c) The exemption under paragraph (a), clause (4), may be expanded to additional acreage, including types 1, 2, and 6 wetlands that are part of a larger wetland system, when the additional acreage is part of a conservation plan approved by the local soil and water conservation district, the additional draining or filling is necessary for efficient operation of the farm, the hydrology of the larger wetland system is not adversely affected, and wetlands other than types 1, 2, and 6 are not drained or filled.

Sec. 123.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 103G.2241, subdivision 2, is amended to read:

Subd. 2.

Drainage.

(a) For the purposes of this subdivision, "public drainage system" means a drainage system as defined in section 103E.005, subdivision 12, and any ditch or tile lawfully connected to the drainage system.

(b) A replacement plan is not required for draining of type 1 wetlands, or up to five acres of type 2 or 6 wetlands, in an unincorporated area on land that has been assessed drainage benefits for a public drainage system, provided that:

(1) during the 20-year period that ended January 1, 1992:

(i) there was an expenditure made from the drainage system account for the public drainage system;

(ii) the public drainage system was repaired or maintained as approved by the drainage authority; or

(iii) no repair or maintenance of the public drainage system was required under section 103E.705, subdivision 1, as determined by the public drainage authority; and

(2) the wetlands are not drained for conversion to:

(i) platted lots;

(ii) planned unit, commercial, or industrial developments; or

(iii) any development with more than one residential unit per 40 acres, except for parcels subject to local zoning standards that allow for family members to establish an additional residence on the same 40 acres.

If wetlands drained under this paragraph are converted to uses prohibited under clause (2) during the ten-year period following drainage, the wetlands must be replaced under section 103G.222.

(c) A replacement plan is not required for draining or filling of wetlands, except for draining types 3, 4, and 5 wetlands that have been in existence for more than 25 years, resulting from maintenance and repair of existing public drainage systems.

(d) A replacement plan is not required for draining or filling of wetlands, except for draining wetlands that have been in existence for more than 25 years, resulting from maintenance and repair of existing drainage systems other than public drainage systems.

(e) A replacement plan is not required for draining or filling of wetlands resulting from activities conducted as part of a public drainage system improvement project that received final approval from the drainage authority before July 1, 1991, and after July 1, 1986, if:

(1) the approval remains valid;

(2) the project remains active; and

(3) no additional drainage will occur beyond that originally approved.

(e) A replacement plan is not required for draining agricultural land that: (1) was planted with annually seeded crops before July 5, except for crops that are normally planted after that date, in eight out of the ten most recent years prior to the impact; (2) was in a crop rotation seeding of pasture grass, cover crop, or legumes, or was fallow for a crop production purpose, in eight out of the ten most recent years prior to the impact; or (3) was enrolled in a state or federal land conservation program and met the requirements of clause (1) or (2) before enrollment.

(f) The public drainage authority may, as part of the repair, install control structures, realign the ditch, construct dikes along the ditch, or make other modifications as necessary to prevent drainage of the wetland.

(g) Wetlands of all types that would be drained as a part of a public drainage repair project are eligible for the permanent wetlands preserve under section 103F.516. The board shall give priority to acquisition of easements on types 3, 4, and 5 wetlands that have been in existence for more than 25 years on public drainage systems and other wetlands that have the greatest risk of drainage from a public drainage repair project.

Sec. 124.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 103G.2241, subdivision 3, is amended to read:

Subd. 3.

Federal approvals.

A replacement plan for wetlands is not required for:

(1) activities exempted from federal regulation under United States Code, title 33, section 1344(f), as in effect on January 1, 1991;

(2) activities authorized under, and conducted in accordance with, an applicable general permit 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, except the nationwide permit in Code of Federal Regulations, title 33, section 330.5, paragraph (a), clauses (14), limited to when a new road crosses a wetland, and (26), as in effect on January 1, 1991; or

(3) activities authorized under the federal Clean Water Act, section 404, or the Rivers and Harbors Act, section 10, regulations that meet minimum state standards under this chapter and sections 103A.202 and 103B.3355 and that have been approved by the Board of Water and Soil Resources, the commissioners of natural resources and agriculture, and the Pollution Control Agency.

EFFECTIVE DATE.

This section is effective the day following final enactment.

Sec. 125.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 103G.2241, subdivision 6, is amended to read:

Subd. 6.

Utilities; public works.

(a) A replacement plan for wetlands is not required for:

(1) placement, maintenance, repair, enhancement, or replacement of utility or utility-type service if:

(i) the impacts of the proposed project on the hydrologic and biological characteristics of the wetland have been avoided and minimized to the extent possible; and

(ii) the proposed project significantly modifies or alters less than one-half acre of wetlands;

(2) activities associated with routine maintenance of utility and pipeline rights-of-way, provided the activities do not result in additional intrusion into the wetland;

(3) alteration of a wetland associated with the operation, maintenance, or repair of an interstate pipeline within all existing or acquired interstate pipeline rights-of-way;

(4) emergency repair and normal maintenance and repair of existing public works, provided the activity does not result in additional intrusion of the public works into the wetland and does not result in the draining or filling, wholly or partially, of a wetland;

(5) normal maintenance and minor repair of structures causing no additional intrusion of an existing structure into the wetland, and maintenance and repair of private crossings that do not result in the draining or filling, wholly or partially, of a wetland; or

(6) repair and updating of existing individual sewage treatment systems as necessary to comply with local, state, and federal regulations.

(1) new placement or maintenance, repair, enhancement, or replacement of existing utility or utility-type service, including pipelines, if:

(i) the direct and indirect impacts of the proposed project have been avoided and minimized to the extent possible; and

(ii) the proposed project significantly modifies or alters less than one-half acre of wetlands;

(2) activities associated with operation, routine maintenance, or emergency repair of existing utilities and public work structures, including pipelines, provided the activities do not result in additional wetland intrusion or additional draining or filling of a wetland either wholly or partially; or

(3) repair and updating of existing individual sewage treatment systems necessary to comply with local, state, and federal regulations.

(b) For maintenance, repair, and replacement, the local government unit may issue a seasonal or annual exemption certification or the utility may proceed without local government unit certification if the utility is carrying out the work according to approved best management practices. Work of an emergency nature may proceed as necessary and any drain or fill activities shall be addressed with the local government unit after the emergency work has been completed.

EFFECTIVE DATE.

This section is effective the day following final enactment.

Sec. 126.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 103G.2241, subdivision 9, is amended to read:

Subd. 9.

De minimis.

(a) Except as provided in paragraphs (b) and (c), a replacement plan for wetlands is not required for draining or filling the following amounts of wetlands as part of a project:

(1) 10,000 square feet of type 1, 2, 6, or 7 wetland, excluding white cedar and tamarack wetlands, outside of the shoreland wetland protection zone in a greater than 80 percent area;

(2) 5,000 square feet of type 1, 2, 6, or 7 wetland, excluding white cedar and tamarack wetlands, outside of the shoreland wetland protection zone in a 50 to 80 percent area, except within the 11-county metropolitan area;

(3) 2,000 square feet of type 1, 2, or 6 wetland, outside of the shoreland wetland protection zone in a less than 50 percent area, except within the 11-county metropolitan area;

(4) 400 100 square feet of wetland types not listed in clauses (1) to (3) outside of the building setback zone of the shoreland wetland protection zones in all counties; or

(5) 400 square feet of type 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, or 8 wetland types listed in clauses (1) to (3), in beyond the building setback zone, as defined in the local shoreland management ordinance, but within the shoreland wetland protection zone, except that. In a greater than 80 percent area, the local government unit may increase the de minimis amount up to 1,000 square feet in the shoreland protection zone in areas beyond the building setback if the wetland is isolated and is determined to have no direct surficial connection to the public water. To the extent that a local shoreland management ordinance is more restrictive than this provision, the local shoreland ordinance applies.;

(6) up to 20 square feet of wetland, regardless of type or location;

(7) 2,500 square feet of type 1, 2, 6, or 7 wetland, excluding white cedar and tamarack wetlands, outside of the shoreland wetland protection zone in a 50 to 80 percent area within the 11-county metropolitan area; or

(8) 1,000 square feet of type 1, 2, or 6 wetland, outside of the shoreland wetland protection zone in a less than 50 percent area within the 11-county metropolitan area.

For purposes of this paragraph, the 11-county metropolitan area consists of the counties of Anoka, Carver, Chisago, Dakota, Hennepin, Isanti, Ramsey, Scott, Sherburne, Washington, and Wright.

(b) The amounts listed in paragraph (a), clauses (1) to (5) (8), may not be combined on a project.

(c) This exemption no longer applies to a landowner's portion of a wetland when the cumulative area drained or filled of the landowner's portion since January 1, 1992, is the greatest of:

(1) the applicable area listed in paragraph (a), if the landowner owns the entire wetland;

(2) five percent of the landowner's portion of the wetland; or

(3) 400 square feet.

(d) This exemption may not be combined with another exemption in this section on a project.

(e) Property may not be divided to increase the amounts listed in paragraph (a).

EFFECTIVE DATE.

This section is effective the day following final enactment.

Sec. 127.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 103G.2241, subdivision 11, is amended to read:

Subd. 11.

Exemption conditions.

(a) A person conducting an activity in a wetland under an exemption in subdivisions 1 to 10 shall ensure that:

(1) appropriate erosion control measures are taken to prevent sedimentation of the water;

(2) the activity does not block fish passage in a watercourse; and

(3) the activity is conducted in compliance with all other applicable federal, state, and local requirements, including best management practices and water resource protection requirements established under chapter 103H.

(b) An activity is exempt if it qualifies for any one of the exemptions, even though it may be indicated as not exempt under another exemption.

(c) Persons proposing to conduct an exempt activity are encouraged to contact the local government unit or the local government unit's designee for advice on minimizing wetland impacts.

(d) The board shall develop rules that address the application and implementation of exemptions and that provide for estimates and reporting of exempt wetland impacts, including those in section 103G.2241, subdivisions 2, 6, and 9.

EFFECTIVE DATE.

This section is effective the day following final enactment.

Sec. 128.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 103G.2242, subdivision 2, is amended to read:

Subd. 2.

Evaluation.

(a) Questions concerning the public value, location, size, or type of a wetland shall be submitted to and determined by a Technical Evaluation Panel after an on-site inspection. The Technical Evaluation Panel shall be composed of a technical professional employee of the board, a technical professional employee of the local soil and water conservation district or districts, a technical professional with expertise in water resources management appointed by the local government unit, and a technical professional employee of the Department of Natural Resources for projects affecting public waters or wetlands adjacent to public waters. The panel shall use the "United States Army Corps of Engineers Wetland Delineation Manual" (January 1987), including updates, supplementary guidance, and replacements, if any, "Wetlands of the United States" (United States Fish and Wildlife Service Circular 39, 1971 edition), and "Classification of Wetlands and Deepwater Habitats of the United States" (1979 edition). The panel shall provide the wetland determination and recommendations on other technical matters to the local government unit that must approve a replacement plan, wetland banking plan, exemption determination, no-loss determination, or wetland boundary or type determination and may recommend approval or denial of the plan. The authority must consider and include the decision of the Technical Evaluation Panel in their approval or denial of a plan or determination.

(b) Persons conducting wetland or public waters boundary delineations or type determinations are exempt from the requirements of chapter 326. By January 15, 2001, the board, in consultation with the Minnesota Association of Professional Soil Scientists, the University of Minnesota, and the Wetland Delineators' Association, shall submit a plan for a professional wetland delineator certification program to the legislature. The board may develop a professional wetland delineator certification program.

EFFECTIVE DATE.

This section is effective the day following final enactment.

Sec. 129.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 103G.2242, subdivision 2a, is amended to read:

Subd. 2a.

Wetland boundary or type determination.

(a) A landowner may apply for a wetland boundary or type determination from the local government unit. The landowner applying for the determination is responsible for submitting proof necessary to make the determination, including, but not limited to, wetland delineation field data, observation well data, topographic mapping, survey mapping, and information regarding soils, vegetation, hydrology, and groundwater both within and outside of the proposed wetland boundary.

(b) A local government unit that receives an application under paragraph (a) may seek the advice of the Technical Evaluation Panel as described in subdivision 2, and, if necessary, expand the Technical Evaluation Panel. The local government unit may delegate the decision authority for wetland boundary or type determinations with the zoning administrator to designated staff, or establish other procedures it considers appropriate.

(c) The local government unit decision must be made in compliance with section 15.99. Within ten calendar days of the decision, the local government unit decision must be mailed to the landowner, members of the Technical Evaluation Panel, the watershed district or watershed management organization, if one exists, and individual members of the public who request a copy.

(d) Appeals of decisions made by designated local government staff must be made to the local government unit. Notwithstanding any law to the contrary, a ruling on an appeal must be made by the local government unit within 30 days from the date of the filing of the appeal.

(e) The local government unit decision is valid for three years unless the Technical Evaluation Panel determines that natural or artificial changes to the hydrology, vegetation, or soils of the area have been sufficient to alter the wetland boundary or type.

EFFECTIVE DATE.

This section is effective the day following final enactment.

Sec. 130.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 103G.2242, subdivision 9, is amended to read:

Subd. 9.

Appeal.

(a) Appeal of a replacement plan, exemption, wetland banking, wetland boundary or type determination, or no-loss decision, or restoration order may be obtained by mailing a petition and payment of a filing fee of $200, which shall be retained by the board to defray administrative costs, to the board within 30 days after the postmarked date of the mailing specified in subdivision 7. If appeal is not sought within 30 days, the decision becomes final. The local government unit may require the petitioner to post a letter of credit, cashier's check, or cash in an amount not to exceed $500. If the petition for hearing is accepted, the amount posted must be returned to the petitioner. Appeal may be made by:

(1) the wetland owner;

(2) any of those to whom notice is required to be mailed under subdivision 7; or

(3) 100 residents of the county in which a majority of the wetland is located.

(b) Within 30 days after receiving a petition, the board shall decide whether to grant the petition and hear the appeal. The board shall grant the petition unless the board finds that:

(1) the appeal is meritless, trivial, or brought solely for the purposes of delay;

(2) the petitioner has not exhausted all local administrative remedies;

(3) expanded technical review is needed;

(4) the local government unit's record is not adequate; or

(5) the petitioner has not posted a letter of credit, cashier's check, or cash if required by the local government unit.

(c) In determining whether to grant the appeal, the board shall also consider the size of the wetland, other factors in controversy, any patterns of similar acts by the local government unit or petitioner, and the consequences of the delay resulting from the appeal.

(d) All appeals must be heard by the committee for dispute resolution of the board, and a decision made within 60 days of filing the local government unit's record and the written briefs submitted for the appeal. The decision must be served by mail on the parties to the appeal, and is not subject to the provisions of chapter 14. A decision whether to grant a petition for appeal and a decision on the merits of an appeal must be considered the decision of an agency in a contested case for purposes of judicial review under sections 14.63 to 14.69.

(e) Notwithstanding section 16A.1283, the board shall establish a fee schedule to defray the administrative costs of appeals made to the board under this subdivision. Fees established under this authority shall not exceed $1,000. Establishment of the fee is not subject to the rulemaking process of chapter 14 and section 14.386 does not apply.

EFFECTIVE DATE.

This section is effective the day following final enactment.

Sec. 131.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 103G.2242, subdivision 12, is amended to read:

Subd. 12.

Replacement credits.

(a) No public or private wetland restoration, enhancement, or construction may be allowed for replacement unless specifically designated for replacement and paid for by the individual or organization performing the wetland restoration, enhancement, or construction, and is completed prior to any draining or filling of the wetland.

(b) Paragraph (a) does not apply to a wetland whose owner has paid back with interest the individual or organization restoring, enhancing, or constructing the wetland.

(c) Notwithstanding section 103G.222, subdivision 1, paragraph (h) (i), the following actions, and others established in rule, that are consistent with criteria in rules adopted by the board in conjunction with the commissioners of natural resources and agriculture, are eligible for replacement credit as determined by the local government unit, including enrollment in a statewide wetlands bank:

(1) reestablishment of permanent native, noninvasive vegetative cover on a wetland on agricultural land that was planted with annually seeded crops, was in a crop rotation seeding of pasture grasses or legumes, or was in a land retirement program during the past ten years;

(2) buffer areas of permanent native, noninvasive vegetative cover established or preserved on upland adjacent to replacement wetlands;

(3) wetlands restored for conservation purposes under terminated easements or contracts; and

(4) water quality treatment ponds constructed to pretreat storm water runoff prior to discharge to wetlands, public waters, or other water bodies, provided that the water quality treatment ponds must be associated with an ongoing or proposed project that will impact a wetland and replacement credit for the treatment ponds is based on the replacement of wetland functions and on an approved stormwater management plan for the local government.

(d) Notwithstanding section 103G.222, subdivision 1, paragraphs (e) (f) and (f) (g), the board may establish by rule different replacement ratios for restoration projects with exceptional natural resource value.

EFFECTIVE DATE.

This section is effective the day following final enactment.

Sec. 132.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 103G.2242, subdivision 15, is amended to read:

Subd. 15.

Fees paid to board.

All fees established in subdivision subdivisions 9 and 14 must be paid to the Board of Water and Soil Resources and credited to the general fund to be used for the purpose of administration of the wetland bank and to process appeals under section 103G.2242, subdivision 9.

EFFECTIVE DATE.

This section is effective the day following final enactment.

Sec. 133.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 103G.2243, subdivision 2, is amended to read:

Subd. 2.

Plan contents.

A comprehensive wetland protection and management plan may:

(1) provide for classification of wetlands in the plan area based on:

(i) an inventory of wetlands in the plan area;

(ii) an assessment of the wetland functions listed in section 103B.3355, using a methodology chosen by the Technical Evaluation Panel from one of the methodologies established or approved by the board under that section; and

(iii) the resulting public values;

(2) vary application of the sequencing standards in section 103G.222, subdivision 1, paragraph (b), for projects based on the classification and criteria set forth in the plan;

(3) vary the replacement standards of section 103G.222, subdivision 1, paragraphs (e) (f) and (f) (g), based on the classification and criteria set forth in the plan, for specific wetland impacts provided there is no net loss of public values within the area subject to the plan, and so long as:

(i) in a 50 to 80 percent area, a minimum acreage requirement of one acre of replaced wetland for each acre of drained or filled wetland requiring replacement is met within the area subject to the plan; and

(ii) in a less than 50 percent area, a minimum acreage requirement of two acres of replaced wetland for each acre of drained or filled wetland requiring replacement is met within the area subject to the plan, except that replacement for the amount above a 1:1 ratio can be accomplished as described in section 103G.2242, subdivision 12; and

(4) in a greater than 80 percent area, allow replacement credit, based on the classification and criteria set forth in the plan, for any project that increases the public value of wetlands, including activities on adjacent upland acres; and.

(5) in a greater than 80 percent area, based on the classification and criteria set forth in the plan, expand the application of the exemptions in section 103G.2241, subdivision 1, paragraph (a), clause (4), to also include nonagricultural land, provided there is no net loss of wetland values.

EFFECTIVE DATE.

This section is effective the day following final enactment.

Sec. 134.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 103G.235, is amended to read:

103G.235 RESTRICTIONS ON ACCESS TO PUBLIC WATERS WETLANDS.

Subdivision 1.

Wetlands adjacent to roads.

To protect the public health or safety, local units of government may by ordinance restrict public access to public waters wetlands from municipality, county, or township roads that abut public waters wetlands.

Subd. 2.

Privately restored or created wetlands.

When a landowner creates a new wetland or restores a formerly existing wetland on private land that is adjacent to public land or a public road right-of-way, there is no public access to the created or restored wetland if posted by the landowner.

Sec. 135.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 103G.301, subdivision 2, is amended to read:

Subd. 2.

Permit application fees.

(a) A permit application fee to defray the costs of receiving, recording, and processing the application must be paid for a permit authorized under this chapter and for each request to amend or transfer an existing permit.

(b) The fee for a project appropriating water in excess of 100 million gallons per year must be assessed to recover the reasonable costs of preparing and processing the permit, including costs for environmental review. Fees collected under this paragraph must be credited to an account in the natural resources fund and are appropriated to the commissioner for fiscal years 2008 and 2009.

(b) (c) The fee to apply for a permit to appropriate water, other than a permit subject to the fee under paragraph (b); a permit to construct or repair a dam that is subject to dam safety inspection,; or a state general permit or to apply for the state water bank program is $150. The application fee for a permit to work in public waters or to divert waters for mining must be at least $150, but not more than $1,000, according to a schedule of fees adopted under section 16A.1285.

Sec. 136.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 115.55, subdivision 1, is amended to read:

Subdivision 1.

Definitions.

(a) The definitions in this subdivision apply to sections 115.55 to 115.56.

(b) "Advisory committee" means the Advisory Committee on Individual Sewage Treatment Systems established under the individual sewage treatment system rules. The advisory committee must be appointed to ensure geographic representation of the state and include elected public officials.

(c) "Applicable requirements" means:

(1) local ordinances that comply with the individual sewage treatment system rules, as required in subdivision 2; or

(2) in areas not subject to the ordinances described in clause (1), the individual sewage treatment system rules.

(d) "City" means a statutory or home rule charter city.

(e) "Commissioner" means the commissioner of the Pollution Control Agency.

(f) "Dwelling" means a building or place used or intended to be used by human occupants as a single-family or two-family unit.

(g) "Individual sewage treatment system" or "system" means a sewage treatment system, or part thereof, serving a dwelling, other establishment, or group thereof, that uses subsurface soil treatment and disposal, or a holding tank, serving a dwelling, other establishment, or a group thereof.

(h) "Individual sewage treatment system professional" means an inspector, installer, site evaluator or designer, or pumper.

(i) "Individual sewage treatment system rules" means rules adopted by the agency that establish minimum standards and criteria for the design, location, installation, use, and maintenance of individual sewage treatment systems.

(j) "Inspector" means a person who inspects individual sewage treatment systems for compliance with the applicable requirements.

(k) "Installer" means a person who constructs or repairs individual sewage treatment systems.

(l) "Local unit of government" means a township, city, or county.

(m) "Performance-based system" means a system that is designed specifically for a site and the environmental conditions on that site and designed to adequately protect the public health and the environment and provide long-term performance. At a minimum, a performance based system must ensure that applicable water quality standards are met in both ground and surface water that ultimately receive the treated wastewater.

(n) "Pumper" means a person who maintains components of individual sewage treatment systems including, but not limited to, septic, aerobic, and holding tanks.

(n) (o) "Seasonal dwelling" means a dwelling that is occupied or used for less than 180 days per year and less than 120 consecutive days.

(o) (p) "Septic system tank" means any covered receptacle designed, constructed, and installed as part of an individual sewage treatment system.

(p) (q) "Site evaluator or designer" means a person who:

(1) investigates soils and site characteristics to determine suitability, limitations, and sizing requirements; and

(2) designs individual sewage treatment systems.

(q) (r) "Straight-pipe system" means a sewage disposal system that includes toilet waste and transports raw or partially settled sewage directly to a lake, a stream, a drainage system, or ground surface.

Sec. 137.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 115.55, subdivision 2, is amended to read:

Subd. 2.

Local ordinances.

(a) All counties that did not adopt ordinances by May 7, 1994, or that do not have ordinances, must adopt ordinances that comply with revisions to the individual sewage treatment system rules by January 1, 1999, unless all towns and cities in the county have adopted such ordinances within two years of the final adoption by the agency. County ordinances must apply to all areas of the county other than cities or towns that have adopted ordinances that comply with this section and are as strict as the applicable county ordinances. Any ordinance adopted by a local unit of government before May 7, 1994, to regulate individual sewage treatment systems must be in compliance with the individual sewage treatment system rules by January 1, 1998.

(b) A copy of each ordinance adopted under this subdivision must be submitted to the commissioner upon adoption.

(c) A local unit of government must make available to the public upon request a written list of any differences between its ordinances and rules adopted under this section.

Sec. 138.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 115.55, subdivision 3, is amended to read:

Subd. 3.

Rules.

(a) The agency shall adopt rules containing minimum standards and criteria for the design, location, installation, use, and maintenance of individual sewage treatment systems. The rules must include:

(1) how the agency will ensure compliance under subdivision 2;

(2) how local units of government shall enforce ordinances under subdivision 2, including requirements for permits and inspection programs;

(3) how the advisory committee will participate in review and implementation of the rules;

(4) provisions for alternative nonstandard systems and performance-based systems;

(5) provisions for handling and disposal of effluent;

(6) provisions for system abandonment; and

(7) procedures for variances, including the consideration of variances based on cost and variances that take into account proximity of a system to other systems.

(b) The agency shall consult with the advisory committee before adopting rules under this subdivision.

(c) Notwithstanding the repeal of the agency rule under which the commissioner has established a list of warrantied individual sewage treatment systems, the warranties for all systems so listed as of the effective date of the repeal shall continue to be valid for the remainder of the warranty period.

(d) The rules required in paragraph (a) must also address the following:

(1) a definition of redoximorphic features and other criteria that can be used by system designers and inspectors;

(2) direction on the interpretation of observed soil features that may be redoximorphic and their relation to zones of seasonal saturation; and

(3) procedures on how to resolve professional disagreements on seasonally saturated soils.

These rules must be in place by March 31, 2006.

Sec. 139.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 115.55, is amended by adding a subdivision to read:

Subd. 12.

Advisory committee; county individual sewage treatment system management plan.

(a) A county may adopt an individual sewage treatment system management plan that describes how the county plans on carrying out individual sewage treatment system needs. The commissioner of the Pollution Control Agency shall form an advisory committee to determine what the plans should address. The advisory committee shall be made up of representatives of the Association of Minnesota Counties, Pollution Control Agency, Board of Water and Soil Resources, Department of Health, and other public agencies or local units of government that have an interest in individual sewage treatment systems.

(b) The advisory committee shall advise the agency on the standards, management, monitoring, and reporting requirements for performance-based systems.

Sec. 140.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 116C.92, is amended to read:

116C.92 COORDINATION OF ACTIVITIES.

Subdivision 1.

State coordinating organization.

The Environmental Quality Board is designated the state coordinating organization for state and federal regulatory activities relating to genetically engineered organisms.

Subd. 2.

Notice of nationwide action.

The board shall notify interested parties if a permit to release genetically engineered wild rice is issued anywhere in the United States. For purposes of this subdivision, "interested parties" means:

(1) the state's wild rice industry;

(2) the legislature;

(3) federally recognized tribes within Minnesota; and

(4) individuals who request to be notified.

Sec. 141.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 116C.94, subdivision 1, is amended to read:

Subdivision 1.

General authority.

(a) Except as provided in paragraph (b), the board shall adopt rules consistent with sections 116C.91 to 116C.96 that require an environmental assessment worksheet and otherwise comply with chapter 116D and rules adopted under it for a proposed release and a permit for a release. The board may place conditions on a permit and may deny, modify, suspend, or revoke a permit.

(b) The board shall adopt rules that require an environmental impact statement and otherwise comply with chapter 116D and rules adopted under it for a proposed release and a permit for a release of genetically engineered wild rice. The board may place conditions on the permit and may deny, modify, suspend, or revoke the permit.

Sec. 142.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 116C.97, subdivision 2, is amended to read:

Subd. 2.

Federal oversight.

(a) If the board determines, upon its own volition or at the request of any person, that a federal program exists for regulating the release of certain genetically engineered organisms and the federal oversight under the program is adequate to protect human health or the environment, then any person may release such genetically engineered organisms after obtaining the necessary federal approval and without obtaining a state release permit or a significant environmental permit or complying with the other requirements of sections 116C.91 to 116C.96 and the rules of the board adopted pursuant to section 116C.94.

(b) If the board determines the federal program is adequate to meet only certain requirements of sections 116C.91 to 116C.96 and the rules of the board adopted pursuant to section 116C.94, the board may exempt such releases from those requirements.

(c) A person proposing a release for which a federal authorization is required may apply to the board for an exemption from the board's permit or to a state agency with a significant environmental permit for the proposed release for an exemption from the agency's permit. The proposer must file with the board or state agency a written request for exemption with a copy of the federal application and the information necessary to determine if there is a potential for significant environmental effects under chapter 116D and rules adopted under it. The board or state agency shall give public notice of the request in the first available issue of the EQB Monitor and shall provide an opportunity for public comment on the environmental review process consistent with chapter 116D and rules adopted under it. The board or state agency may grant the exemption if the board or state agency finds that the federal authorization issued is adequate to meet the requirements of chapter 116D and rules adopted under it and any other requirement of the board's or state agency's authority regarding the release of genetically engineered organisms. The board or state agency must grant or deny the exemption within 45 days after the receipt of the written request and the information required by the board or state agency.

(d) This subdivision does not apply to genetically engineered organisms for which an environmental impact statement is required under sections 116C.91 to 116C.96.

Sec. 143.

[144.995] DEFINITIONS; ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH TRACKING AND BIOMONITORING.

(a) For purposes of sections 144.995 to 144.998, the terms in this section have the meanings given.

(b) "Advisory panel" means the Environmental Health Tracking and Biomonitoring Advisory Panel established under section 144.998.

(c) "Biomonitoring" means the process by which chemicals and their metabolites are identified and measured within a biospecimen.

(d) "Biospecimen" means a sample of human fluid, serum, or tissue that is reasonably available as a medium to measure the presence and concentration of chemicals or their metabolites in a human body.

(e) "Commissioner" means the commissioner of the Department of Health.

(f) "Community" means geographically or nongeographically based populations that may participate in the biomonitoring program. A "nongeographical community" includes, but is not limited to, populations that may share a common chemical exposure through similar occupations, populations experiencing a common health outcome that may be linked to chemical exposures, populations that may experience similar chemical exposures because of comparable consumption, lifestyle, product use, and subpopulations that share ethnicity, age, or gender.

(g) "Department" means the Department of Health.

(h) "Designated chemicals" means those chemicals that are known to, or strongly suspected of, adversely impacting human health or development, based upon scientific, peer-reviewed animal, human, or in vitro studies, and baseline human exposure data, and consists of chemical families or metabolites that are included in the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention studies that are known collectively as the National Reports on Human Exposure to Environmental Chemicals Program and any substances specified by the commissioner after receiving recommendations under section 144.998, subdivision 3, clause (6).

(i) "Environmental hazard" means a chemical or other substance for which scientific, peer-reviewed studies of humans, animals, or cells have demonstrated that the chemical is known or reasonably anticipated to adversely impact human health.

(j) "Environmental health tracking" means collection, integration, analysis, and dissemination of data on human exposures to chemicals in the environment and on diseases potentially caused or aggravated by those chemicals.

Sec. 144.

[144.996] ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH TRACKING; BIOMONITORING.

Subdivision 1.

Environmental health tracking.

In cooperation with the commissioner of the Pollution Control Agency, the commissioner shall establish an environmental health tracking program to:

(1) coordinate data collection with the Pollution Control Agency, Department of Agriculture, University of Minnesota, and any other relevant state agency and work to promote the sharing of and access to health and environmental databases to develop an environmental health tracking system for Minnesota, consistent with applicable data practices laws;

(2) facilitate the dissemination of aggregate public health tracking data to the public and researchers in accessible format;

(3) develop a strategic plan that includes a mission statement, the identification of core priorities for research and epidemiologic surveillance, and the identification of internal and external stakeholders, and a work plan describing future program development and addressing issues having to do with compatibility with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's National Environmental Public Health Tracking Program;

(4) develop written data sharing agreements as needed with the Pollution Control Agency, Department of Agriculture, and other relevant state agencies and organizations, and develop additional procedures as needed to protect individual privacy;

(5) organize, analyze, and interpret available data, in order to:

(i) characterize statewide and localized trends and geographic patterns of population-based measures of chronic diseases including, but not limited to, cancer, respiratory diseases, reproductive problems, birth defects, neurologic diseases, and developmental disorders;

(ii) characterize statewide and localized trends and geographic patterns in the occurrence of environmental hazards and exposures;

(iii) assess the feasibility of integrating disease rate data with indicators of exposure to the selected environmental hazards such as biomonitoring data, and other health and environmental data;

(iv) incorporate newly collected and existing health tracking and biomonitoring data into efforts to identify communities with elevated rates of chronic disease, higher likelihood of exposure to environmental hazards, or both;

(v) analyze occurrence of environmental hazards, exposures, and diseases with relation to socioeconomic status, race, and ethnicity;

(vi) develop and implement targeted plans to conduct more intensive health tracking and biomonitoring among communities; and

(vii) work with the Pollution Control Agency, the Department of Agriculture, and other relevant state agency personnel and organizations to develop, implement, and evaluate preventive measures to reduce elevated rates of diseases and exposures identified through activities performed under sections 144.995 to 144.998; and

(6) submit a biennial report to the chairs and ranking members of the committees with jurisdiction over environment and health by January 15, beginning January 15, 2009, on the status of environmental health tracking activities and related research programs, with recommendations for a comprehensive environmental public health tracking program.

Subd. 2.

Biomonitoring.

The commissioner shall:

(1) conduct biomonitoring of communities on a voluntary basis by collecting and analyzing biospecimens, as appropriate, to assess environmental exposures to designated chemicals;

(2) conduct biomonitoring of pregnant women and minors on a voluntary basis, when scientifically appropriate;

(3) communicate findings to the public, and plan ensuing stages of biomonitoring and disease tracking work to further develop and refine the integrated analysis;

(4) share analytical results with the advisory panel and work with the panel to interpret results, communicate findings to the public, and plan ensuing stages of biomonitoring work; and

(5) submit a biennial report to the chairs and ranking members of the committees with jurisdiction over environment and health by January 15, beginning January 15, 2009, on the status of the biomonitoring program and any recommendations for improvement.

Subd. 3.

Health data.

Data collected under the biomonitoring program are health data under section 13.3805.

Sec. 145.

[144.997] BIOMONITORING PILOT PROGRAM.

Subdivision 1.

Pilot program.

With advice from the advisory panel, and after the program guidelines in subdivision 4 are developed, the commissioner shall implement a biomonitoring pilot program. The program shall collect one biospecimen from each of the voluntary participants. The biospecimen selected must be the biospecimen that most accurately represents body concentration of the chemical of interest. Each biospecimen from the voluntary participants must be analyzed for one type or class of related chemicals. The commissioner shall determine the chemical or class of chemicals to which community members were most likely exposed. The program shall collect and assess biospecimens in accordance with the following:

(1) 30 voluntary participants from each of three communities that the commissioner identifies as likely to have been exposed to a designated chemical;

(2) 100 voluntary participants from each of two communities:

(i) that the commissioner identifies as likely to have been exposed to arsenic; and

(ii) that the commissioner identifies as likely to have been exposed to mercury; and

(3) 100 voluntary participants from each of two communities that the commissioner identifies as likely to have been exposed to perfluorinated chemicals, including perfluorobutanoic acid.

Subd. 2.

Base program.

(a) By January 15, 2008, the commissioner shall submit a report on the results of the biomonitoring pilot program to the chairs and ranking members of the committees with jurisdiction over health and environment.

(b) Following the conclusion of the pilot program, the commissioner shall:

(1) work with the advisory panel to assess the usefulness of continuing biomonitoring among members of communities assessed during the pilot program and to identify other communities and other designated chemicals to be assessed via biomonitoring;

(2) work with the advisory panel to assess the pilot program, including but not limited to the validity and accuracy of the analytical measurements and adequacy of the guidelines and protocols;

(3) communicate the results of the pilot program to the public; and

(4) after consideration of the findings and recommendations in clauses (1) and (2), and within the appropriations available, develop and implement a base program.

Subd. 3.

Participation.

(a) Participation in the biomonitoring program by providing biospecimens is voluntary and requires written, informed consent. Minors may participate in the program if a written consent is signed by the minor's parent or legal guardian. The written consent must include the information required to be provided under this subdivision to all voluntary participants.

(b) All participants shall be evaluated for the presence of the designated chemical of interest as a component of the biomonitoring process. Participants shall be provided with information and fact sheets about the program's activities and its findings. Individual participants shall, if requested, receive their complete results. Any results provided to participants shall be subject to the Department of Health Institutional Review Board protocols and guidelines. When either physiological or chemical data obtained from a participant indicate a significant known health risk, program staff experienced in communicating biomonitoring results shall consult with the individual and recommend follow-up steps, as appropriate. Program administrators shall receive training in administering the program in an ethical, culturally sensitive, participatory, and community-based manner.

Subd. 4.

Program guidelines.

(a) The commissioner, in consultation with the advisory panel, shall develop:

(1) protocols or program guidelines that address the science and practice of biomonitoring to be utilized and procedures for changing those protocols to incorporate new and more accurate or efficient technologies as they become available. The commissioner and the advisory panel shall be guided by protocols and guidelines developed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the National Biomonitoring Program;

(2) guidelines for ensuring the privacy of information; informed consent; follow-up counseling and support; and communicating findings to participants, communities, and the general public. The informed consent used for the program must meet the informed consent protocols developed by the National Institutes of Health;

(3) educational and outreach materials that are culturally appropriate for dissemination to program participants and communities. Priority shall be given to the development of materials specifically designed to ensure that parents are informed about all of the benefits of breastfeeding so that the program does not result in an unjustified fear of toxins in breast milk, which might inadvertently lead parents to avoid breastfeeding. The materials shall communicate relevant scientific findings; data on the accumulation of pollutants to community health; and the required responses by local, state, and other governmental entities in regulating toxicant exposures;

(4) a training program that is culturally sensitive specifically for health care providers, health educators, and other program administrators;

(5) a designation process for state and private laboratories that are qualified to analyze biospecimens and report the findings; and

(6) a method for informing affected communities and local governments representing those communities concerning biomonitoring activities and for receiving comments from citizens concerning those activities.

(b) The commissioner may enter into contractual agreements with health clinics, community-based organizations, or experts in a particular field to perform any of the activities described under this section.

Sec. 146.

[144.998] ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH TRACKING AND BIOMONITORING ADVISORY PANEL.

Subdivision 1.

Creation.

The commissioner shall establish the Environmental Health Tracking and Biomonitoring Advisory Panel. The commissioner shall appoint, from the panel's membership, a chair. The panel shall meet as often as it deems necessary but, at a minimum, on a quarterly basis. Members of the panel shall serve without compensation but shall be reimbursed for travel and other necessary expenses incurred through performance of their duties. Members appointed by the commissioner are appointed for a three-year term and may be reappointed. Legislative appointees serve at the pleasure of the appointing authority.

Subd. 2.

Members.

(a) The commissioner shall appoint eight members, none of whom may be lobbyists registered under chapter 10A, who have backgrounds or training in designing, implementing, and interpreting health tracking and biomonitoring studies or in related fields of science, including epidemiology, biostatistics, environmental health, laboratory sciences, occupational health, industrial hygiene, toxicology, and public health, including:

(1) at least two scientists representative of each of the following:

(i) nongovernmental organizations with a focus on environmental health, environmental justice, children's health, or on specific chronic diseases; and

(ii) statewide business organizations; and

(2) at least one scientist who is a representative of the University of Minnesota.

(b) Two citizen panel members meeting the scientific qualifications in paragraph (a) shall be appointed, one by the speaker of the house and one by the senate majority leader.

(c) In addition, one representative each shall be appointed by the commissioners of the Pollution Control Agency and the Department of Agriculture, and by the commissioner of health to represent the department's Health Promotion and Chronic Disease Division.

Subd. 3.

Duties.

The advisory panel shall make recommendations to the commissioner and the legislature on:

(1) priorities for health tracking;

(2) priorities for biomonitoring that are based on sound science and practice, and that will advance the state of public health in Minnesota;

(3) specific chronic diseases to study under the environmental health tracking system;

(4) specific environmental hazard exposures to study under the environmental health tracking system, with the agreement of at least nine of the advisory panel members;

(5) specific communities and geographic areas on which to focus environmental health tracking and biomonitoring efforts;

(6) specific chemicals to study under the biomonitoring program, with the agreement of at least nine of the advisory panel members; in making these recommendations, the panel may consider the following criteria:

(i) the degree of potential exposure to the public or specific subgroups, including, but not limited to, occupational;

(ii) the likelihood of a chemical being a carcinogen or toxicant based on peer-reviewed health data, the chemical structure, or the toxicology of chemically related compounds;

(iii) the limits of laboratory detection for the chemical, including the ability to detect the chemical at low enough levels that could be expected in the general population;

(iv) exposure or potential exposure to the public or specific subgroups;

(v) the known or suspected health effects resulting from the same level of exposure based on peer-reviewed scientific studies;

(vi) the need to assess the efficacy of public health actions to reduce exposure to a chemical;

(vii) the availability of a biomonitoring analytical method with adequate accuracy, precision, sensitivity, specificity, and speed;

(viii) the availability of adequate biospecimen samples; or

(ix) other criteria that the panel may agree to; and

(7) other aspects of the design, implementation, and evaluation of the environmental health tracking and biomonitoring system, including, but not limited to:

(i) identifying possible community partners and sources of additional public or private funding;

(ii) developing outreach and educational methods and materials; and

(iii) disseminating environmental health tracking and biomonitoring findings to the public.

Subd. 4.

Liability.

No member of the panel shall be held civilly or criminally liable for an act or omission by that person if the act or omission was in good faith and within the scope of the member's responsibilities under sections 144.995 to 144.998.

Sec. 147.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 219.99, is amended to read:

219.99 RAILROAD PRAIRIE RIGHT-OF-WAY; BEST MANAGEMENT PRACTICES.

The commissioner of natural resources shall conduct a field review of railroad rights-of-way to identify native prairie. The priority will be to identify and conduct a field review of any surveys which have been conducted previously, whether by public or private persons, of native prairies within railroad rights-of-way in this state. In cooperation with railroad companies, the commissioner shall identify management practices used to control vegetation along railroad rights-of-way. The commissioner shall then assess the impact of those management practices on the prairie lands within the railroad rights-of-way. Based on that assessment, the commissioner and railroad companies shall jointly develop voluntary best management practices for prairie lands within railroad rights-of-way. The commissioner shall, to the extent feasible, work with private individuals and groups to cause to be erected markers at either end of each native prairie within a railroad right-of-way.

Sec. 148.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 282.04, subdivision 1, is amended to read:

Subdivision 1.

Timber sales; land leases and uses.

(a) The county auditor may sell timber upon any tract that may be approved by the natural resources commissioner. The sale of timber shall be made for cash at not less than the appraised value determined by the county board to the highest bidder after not less than one week's published notice in an official paper within the county. Any timber offered at the public sale and not sold may thereafter be sold at private sale by the county auditor at not less than the appraised value thereof, until the time as the county board may withdraw the timber from sale. The appraised value of the timber and the forestry practices to be followed in the cutting of said timber shall be approved by the commissioner of natural resources.

(b) Payment of the full sale price of all timber sold on tax-forfeited lands shall be made in cash at the time of the timber sale, except in the case of oral or sealed bid auction sales, the down payment shall be no less than 15 percent of the appraised value, and the balance shall be paid prior to entry. In the case of auction sales that are partitioned and sold as a single sale with predetermined cutting blocks, the down payment shall be no less than 15 percent of the appraised price of the entire timber sale which may be held until the satisfactory completion of the sale or applied in whole or in part to the final cutting block. The value of each separate block must be paid in full before any cutting may begin in that block. With the permission of the county contract administrator the purchaser may enter unpaid blocks and cut necessary timber incidental to developing logging roads as may be needed to log other blocks provided that no timber may be removed from an unpaid block until separately scaled and paid for. If payment is provided as specified in this paragraph as security under paragraph (a) and no cutting has taken place on the contract, the county auditor may credit the security provided, less any down payment required for an auction sale under this paragraph, to any other contract issued to the contract holder by the county under this chapter to which the contract holder requests in writing that it be credited, provided the request and transfer is made within the same calendar year as the security was received.

(c) The county board may require final settlement on the basis of a scale of cut products sell any timber, including biomass, as appraised or scaled. Any parcels of land from which timber is to be sold by scale of cut products shall be so designated in the published notice of sale under paragraph (a), in which case the notice shall contain a description of the parcels, a statement of the estimated quantity of each species of timber, and the appraised price of each species of timber for 1,000 feet, per cord or per piece, as the case may be. In those cases any bids offered over and above the appraised prices shall be by percentage, the percent bid to be added to the appraised price of each of the different species of timber advertised on the land. The purchaser of timber from the parcels shall pay in cash at the time of sale at the rate bid for all of the timber shown in the notice of sale as estimated to be standing on the land, and in addition shall pay at the same rate for any additional amounts which the final scale shows to have been cut or was available for cutting on the land at the time of sale under the terms of the sale. Where the final scale of cut products shows that less timber was cut or was available for cutting under terms of the sale than was originally paid for, the excess payment shall be refunded from the forfeited tax sale fund upon the claim of the purchaser, to be audited and allowed by the county board as in case of other claims against the county. No timber, except hardwood pulpwood, may be removed from the parcels of land or other designated landings until scaled by a person or persons designated by the county board and approved by the commissioner of natural resources. Landings other than the parcel of land from which timber is cut may be designated for scaling by the county board by written agreement with the purchaser of the timber. The county board may, by written agreement with the purchaser and with a consumer designated by the purchaser when the timber is sold by the county auditor, and with the approval of the commissioner of natural resources, accept the consumer's scale of cut products delivered at the consumer's landing. No timber shall be removed until fully paid for in cash. Small amounts of timber not exceeding $3,000 in appraised valuation may be sold for not less than the full appraised value at private sale to individual persons without first publishing notice of sale or calling for bids, provided that in case of a sale involving a total appraised value of more than $200 the sale shall be made subject to final settlement on the basis of a scale of cut products in the manner above provided and not more than two of the sales, directly or indirectly to any individual shall be in effect at one time.

(d) As directed by the county board, the county auditor may lease tax-forfeited land to individuals, corporations or organized subdivisions of the state at public or private sale, and at the prices and under the terms as the county board may prescribe, for use as cottage and camp sites and for agricultural purposes and for the purpose of taking and removing of hay, stumpage, sand, gravel, clay, rock, marl, and black dirt from the land, and for garden sites and other temporary uses provided that no leases shall be for a period to exceed ten years; provided, further that any leases involving a consideration of more than $12,000 per year, except to an organized subdivision of the state shall first be offered at public sale in the manner provided herein for sale of timber. Upon the sale of any leased land, it shall remain subject to the lease for not to exceed one year from the beginning of the term of the lease. Any rent paid by the lessee for the portion of the term cut off by the cancellation shall be refunded from the forfeited tax sale fund upon the claim of the lessee, to be audited and allowed by the county board as in case of other claims against the county.

(e) As directed by the county board, the county auditor may lease tax-forfeited land to individuals, corporations, or organized subdivisions of the state at public or private sale, at the prices and under the terms as the county board may prescribe, for the purpose of taking and removing for use for road construction and other purposes tax-forfeited stockpiled iron-bearing material. The county auditor must determine that the material is needed and suitable for use in the construction or maintenance of a road, tailings basin, settling basin, dike, dam, bank fill, or other works on public or private property, and that the use would be in the best interests of the public. No lease shall exceed ten years. The use of a stockpile for these purposes must first be approved by the commissioner of natural resources. The request shall be deemed approved unless the requesting county is notified to the contrary by the commissioner of natural resources within six months after receipt of a request for approval for use of a stockpile. Once use of a stockpile has been approved, the county may continue to lease it for these purposes until approval is withdrawn by the commissioner of natural resources.

(f) The county auditor, with the approval of the county board is authorized to grant permits, licenses, and leases to tax-forfeited lands for the depositing of stripping, lean ores, tailings, or waste products from mines or ore milling plants, upon the conditions and for the consideration and for the period of time, not exceeding 15 years, as the county board may determine. The permits, licenses, or leases are subject to approval by the commissioner of natural resources.

(g) Any person who removes any timber from tax-forfeited land before said timber has been scaled and fully paid for as provided in this subdivision is guilty of a misdemeanor.

(h) The county auditor may, with the approval of the county board, and without first offering at public sale, grant leases, for a term not exceeding 25 years, for the removal of peat and for the production or removal of farm-grown closed-loop biomass as defined in section 216B.2424, subdivision 1, or short-rotation woody crops from tax-forfeited lands upon the terms and conditions as the county board may prescribe. Any lease for the removal of peat, farm-grown closed-loop biomass, or short-rotation woody crops from tax-forfeited lands must first be reviewed and approved by the commissioner of natural resources if the lease covers 320 or more acres. No lease for the removal of peat, farm-grown closed-loop biomass, or short-rotation woody crops shall be made by the county auditor pursuant to this section without first holding a public hearing on the auditor's intention to lease. One printed notice in a legal newspaper in the county at least ten days before the hearing, and posted notice in the courthouse at least 20 days before the hearing shall be given of the hearing.

(i) Notwithstanding any provision of paragraph (c) to the contrary, the St. Louis County auditor may, at the discretion of the county board, sell timber to the party who bids the highest price for all the several kinds of timber, as provided for sales by the commissioner of natural resources under section 90.14. Bids offered over and above the appraised price need not be applied proportionately to the appraised price of each of the different species of timber.

(j) In lieu of any payment or deposit required in paragraph (b), as directed by the county board and under terms set by the county board, the county auditor may accept an irrevocable bank letter of credit in the amount equal to the amount otherwise determined in paragraph (b). If an irrevocable bank letter of credit is provided under this paragraph, at the written request of the purchaser, the county may periodically allow the bank letter of credit to be reduced by an amount proportionate to the value of timber that has been harvested and for which the county has received payment. The remaining amount of the bank letter of credit after a reduction under this paragraph must not be less than 20 percent of the value of the timber purchased. If an irrevocable bank letter of credit or cash deposit is provided for the down payment required in paragraph (b), and no cutting of timber has taken place on the contract for which a letter of credit has been provided, the county may allow the transfer of the letter of credit to any other contract issued to the contract holder by the county under this chapter to which the contract holder requests in writing that it be credited.

Sec. 149.

[325E.385] PRODUCTS CONTAINING POLYBROMINATED DIPHENYL ETHER.

Subdivision 1.

Definitions.

For the purposes of sections 325E.386 to 325E.388, the terms in this section have the meanings given them.

Subd. 2.

Commercial decabromodiphenyl ether.

"Commercial decabromodiphenyl ether" means the chemical mixture of decabromodiphenyl ether, including associated polybrominated diphenyl ether impurities not intentionally added.

Subd. 3.

Commissioner.

"Commissioner" means the commissioner of the Pollution Control Agency.

Subd. 4.

Manufacturer.

"Manufacturer" means any person, firm, association, partnership, corporation, governmental entity, organization, or joint venture that produces a product containing polybrominated diphenyl ethers or an importer or domestic distributor of a noncomestible product containing polybrominated diphenyl ethers.

Subd. 5.

Polybrominated diphenyl ethers or PBDE's.

"Polybrominated diphenyl ethers" or "PBDE's" means chemical forms that consist of diphenyl ethers bound with bromine atoms. Polybrominated diphenyl ethers include, but are not limited to, the three primary forms of the commercial mixtures known as pentabromodiphenyl ether, octabromodiphenyl ether, and decabromodiphenyl ether.

Subd. 6.

Retailer.

"Retailer" means a person who offers a product for sale at retail through any means, including, but not limited to, remote offerings such as sales outlets, catalogs, or the Internet, but does not include a sale that is a wholesale transaction with a distributor or a retailer.

Subd. 7.

Used product.

"Used product" means any product that has been previously owned, purchased, or sold in commerce. Used product does not include any product manufactured after January 1, 2008.

Sec. 150.

[325E.386] PRODUCTS CONTAINING CERTAIN POLYBROMINATED DIPHENYL ETHERS BANNED; EXEMPTIONS.

Subdivision 1.

Penta- and octabromodiphenyl ethers.

Except as provided in subdivision 3, beginning January 1, 2008, a person may not manufacture, process, or distribute in commerce a product or flame-retardant part of a product containing more than one-tenth of one percent of pentabromodiphenyl ether or octabromodiphenyl ether by mass.

Subd. 2.

Exemptions.

The following products containing polybrominated diphenyl ethers are exempt from subdivision 1 and section 325E.387, subdivision 2:

(1) the sale or distribution of any used transportation vehicle with component parts containing polybrominated diphenyl ethers;

(2) the sale or distribution of any used transportation vehicle parts or new transportation vehicle parts manufactured before January 1, 2008, that contain polybrominated diphenyl ethers;

(3) the manufacture, sale, repair, distribution, maintenance, refurbishment, or modification of equipment containing polybrominated diphenyl ethers and used primarily for military or federally funded space program applications. This exemption does not cover consumer-based goods with broad applicability;

(4) the sale or distribution by a business, charity, public entity, or private party of any used product containing polybrominated diphenyl ethers;

(5) the manufacture, sale, or distribution of new carpet cushion made from recycled foam containing more than one-tenth of one percent polybrominated diphenyl ether;

(6) medical devices; or

(7) the manufacture, sale, repair, distribution, maintenance, refurbishment, or modification of telecommunications equipment containing polybrominated diphenyl ethers used by entities eligible to hold authorization in the Public Safety Pool under Code of Federal Regulations, title 47, part 90.

In-state retailers in possession of products on January 1, 2008, that are banned for sale under subdivision 1 may exhaust their stock through sales to the public. Nothing in this section restricts the ability of a manufacturer, importer, or distributor from transporting products containing polybrominated diphenyl ethers through the state, or storing such products in the state for later distribution outside the state.

Sec. 151.

[325E.387] REVIEW OF DECABROMODIPHENYL ETHER.

Subdivision 1.

Commissioner duties.

The commissioner in consultation with the commissioners of health and public safety shall review uses of commercial decabromodiphenyl ether, availability of technically feasible and safer alternatives, fire safety, and any evidence regarding the potential harm to public health and the environment posed by commercial decabromodiphenyl ether and the alternatives. The commissioner must consult with key stakeholders. The commissioner must also review the findings from similar state and federal agencies and must report their findings and recommendations to the appropriate committees of the legislature no later than January 15, 2008.

Subd. 2.

State procurement.

By January 1, 2008, the commissioner of administration shall make available for purchase and use by all state agencies equipment, supplies, and other products that do not contain polybrominated diphenyl ethers, unless exempted under section 325E.386, subdivision 2.

Sec. 152.

[325E.388] PENALTIES.

A manufacturer who violates sections 325E.386 to 325E.388 is subject to a civil penalty not to exceed $1,000 for each violation in the case of a first offense. A manufacturer is subject to a civil penalty not to exceed $5,000 for each repeat offense. Penalties collected under this section must be deposited in an account in the special revenue fund and are appropriated in fiscal years 2008 and 2009 to the commissioner to implement and enforce this section.

Sec. 153.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 394.23, is amended to read:

394.23 COMPREHENSIVE PLAN.

The board has the power and authority to prepare and adopt by ordinance, a comprehensive plan. A comprehensive plan or plans when adopted by ordinance must be the basis for official controls adopted under the provisions of sections 394.21 to 394.37. The commissioner of natural resources must provide the natural heritage data from the county biological survey, if available, to each county for use in the comprehensive plan.

Sec. 154.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 462.353, subdivision 2, is amended to read:

Subd. 2.

Studies and reports.

In exercising its powers under subdivision 1, a municipality may collect and analyze data, prepare maps, charts, tables, and other illustrations and displays, and conduct necessary studies. A municipality may publicize its purposes, suggestions, and findings on planning matters, may distribute reports thereon, and may advise the public on the planning matters within the scope of its duties and objectives. The commissioner of natural resources must provide the natural heritage data from the county biological survey, if available, to each municipality for use in the comprehensive plan.

Sec. 155.

Laws 2003, chapter 128, article 1, section 167, subdivision 1, as amended by Laws 2005, First Special Session chapter 1, article 2, section 152, is amended to read:

Subdivision 1.

Forest classification status review.

(a) By December 31, 2006, the commissioner of natural resources shall complete a review of the forest classification status of all state forests classified as managed or limited, all forest lands under the authority of the commissioner as defined in Minnesota Statutes, section 89.001, subdivision 13, and lands managed by the commissioner under Minnesota Statutes, section 282.011. The review must be conducted on a forest-by-forest and area-by-area basis in accordance with the process and criteria under Minnesota Rules, part 6100.1950. Except as provided in paragraph (d), after each forest is reviewed, the commissioner must change its the status of the lands within each forest to limited or closed, and . The commissioner may classify portions of a limited forest as closed. The commissioner must also provide a similar status for each of the other areas subject to review under this section after each individual review is completed.

(b) If the commissioner determines on January 1, 2005, that the review required under this section cannot be completed by December 31, 2006, the completion date for the review shall be extended to December 31, 2008. By January 15, 2005, the commissioner shall report to the chairs of the legislative committees with jurisdiction over natural resources policy and finance regarding the status of the process required by this section.

(c) Until December 31, 2010, the state forests and areas subject to review under this section are exempt from Minnesota Statutes, section 84.777, unless an individual forest or area has been classified as limited or closed.

(d) Notwithstanding the restrictions in paragraph (a), and Minnesota Statutes, section 84.777, subdivision 1, all forest lands under the authority of the commissioner as defined in Minnesota Statutes, section 89.001, subdivision 13, and lands managed by the commissioner under Minnesota Statutes, section 282.011, that are north of U.S. Highway 2 shall maintain their present classification unless the commissioner reclassifies the lands under Minnesota Rules, part 6100.1950. The commissioner shall provide for seasonal trail closures when conditions warrant them. By December 31, 2008, the commissioner shall complete the review and designate trails on forest lands north of Highway 2 as provided in this section.

Sec. 156.

Laws 2003, chapter 128, article 1, section 169, is amended to read:

Sec. 169.

CONTINUOUS TRAIL DESIGNATION.

(a) The commissioner of natural resources shall locate, plan, design, map, construct, designate, and sign a new trail for use by all-terrain vehicles and off-highway motorcycles of not less than 70 continuous miles in length on any land owned by the state or in cooperation with any county on land owned by that county or on a combination of any of these lands. This new trail shall be ready for use by April 1, 2007 June 30, 2009.

(b) All funding for this new trail shall come from the all-terrain vehicle dedicated account and is appropriated each year as needed.

(c) This new trail shall have at least two areas of access complete with appropriate parking for vehicles and trailers and enough room for loading and unloading all-terrain vehicles. Some existing trails, that are strictly all-terrain vehicle trails, and are not inventoried forest roads, may be incorporated into the design of this new all-terrain vehicle trail. This new trail may be of a continuous loop design and shall provide for spurs to other all-terrain vehicle trails as long as those spurs do not count toward the 70 continuous miles of this new all-terrain vehicle trail. Four rest areas shall be provided along the way.

Sec. 157.

Laws 2006, chapter 236, article 1, section 21, is amended to read:

Sec. 21.

EXCHANGE OF TAX-FORFEITED LAND; PRIVATE SALE; ITASCA COUNTY.

(a) For the purpose of a land exchange for use in connection with a proposed steel mill in Itasca County referenced in Laws 1999, chapter 240, article 1, section 8, subdivision 3, title examination and approval of the land described in paragraph (b) shall be undertaken as a condition of exchange of the land for class B land, and shall be governed by Minnesota Statutes, section 94.344, subdivisions 9 and 10, and the provisions of this section. Notwithstanding the evidence of title requirements in Minnesota Statutes, section 94.344, subdivisions 9 and 10, the county attorney shall examine one or more title reports or title insurance commitments prepared or underwritten by a title insurer licensed to conduct title insurance business in this state, regardless of whether abstracts were created or updated in the preparation of the title reports or commitments. The opinion of the county attorney, and approval by the attorney general, shall be based on those title reports or commitments.

(b) The land subject to this section is located in Itasca County and is described as:

(1) Sections 3, 4, 7, 10, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 20, 21, 22, 23, 26, 28, and 29, Township 56 North, Range 22 West;

(2) Sections 3, 4, 9, 10, 13, and 14, Township 56 North, Range 23 West;

(3) Section 30, Township 57 North, Range 22 West; and

(4) Sections 25, 26, 34, 35, and 36, Township 57 North, Range 23 West.

(c) Riparian land given in exchange by Itasca County for the purpose of the steel mill referenced in paragraph (a), is exempt from the restrictions imposed by Minnesota Statutes, section 94.342, subdivision 3.

(d) Notwithstanding Minnesota Statutes, sections 92.45 and 282.018, subdivision 1, and the public sale provisions of Minnesota Statutes, chapter 282, Itasca County may sell, by private sale, any land received in exchange for the purpose of the steel mill referenced in paragraph (a), under the remaining provisions of Minnesota Statutes, chapter 282. The sale must be in a form approved by the attorney general.

(e) Notwithstanding Minnesota Statutes, section 284.28, subdivision 8, or any other law to the contrary, land acquired through an exchange under this section is exempt from payment of three percent of the sales price required to be collected by the county auditor at the time of sale for deposit in the state treasury.

Sec. 158.

RELIEF PAYMENTS FOR TIMBER SALE PERMITS.

(a) Notwithstanding Minnesota Statutes, section 90.161, 90.173, 90.211, or other law to the contrary, the commissioner of natural resources shall provide payment to permittees with eligible permits subject to the following limits and conditions:

(1) permittees will receive a payment equal to the lesser of $2,250 or 60 percent of the 15 percent down payment required under Minnesota Statutes, section 90.14, for each eligible permit forfeited within 60 days following the effective date of this section; or

(2) permittees will receive a payment equal to 60 percent of the 15 percent down payment required under Minnesota Statutes, section 90.14, for each eligible permit the permittee commits to cut and close by the earlier of June 30, 2010, or when the permit expires. This commitment must be made within 60 days following the effective date of this section. Payment must be returned to the state for each permit for which the permittee fails to fulfill the commitment under this clause.

(b) Payments under paragraph (a) shall be mailed to permittees by August 31, 2007.

(c) An "eligible permit" means a state timber permit:

(1) that was issued on or after June 1, 2004, but before April 1, 2006; and

(2) for which there has been no harvesting, road building, or other on-the-ground actions taken.

(d) Permittees in default or trespass status are not eligible for payments under this section. A permittee may forfeit any number of complete permits, not to exceed 7,500 cords in total. Partial permits may not be forfeited to meet the 7,500-cord maximum.

(e) The commissioner shall reoffer the forfeited sales no later than January 31, 2008.

EFFECTIVE DATE.

This section is effective the day following final enactment.

Sec. 159.

FOREST PROTECTION PLAN.

Subdivision 1.

Task force plan.

(a) The Forest Resources Council shall create a task force to develop a plan to prepare the state for early detection, appropriate response, and educating the public regarding invasive pests that threaten the tree cover of Minnesota. The task force also may give advice on how to best promote forest diversity and the planting of trees to address environmental challenges with the state. The plan must address:

(1) current efforts to address forest pests, what geographic areas and property types have regular and active monitoring of forest pests, and gaps in the adequacy of the current oversight and detection system;

(2) how the state may establish a flexible, yet comprehensive, system of tree monitoring so that trees in all areas of Minnesota will be covered by active early pest detection efforts. In analyzing this, the task force shall consider possible roles for certified tree inspectors, volunteers, and state and local government;

(3) current storm damage response and how that might be improved for forest health and to minimize vulnerability to pest infection;

(4) the adequacy of the current response plan, the clarity of state and local roles and responsibilities, emergency communication plans, and the availability of needed funding for pest outbreak response and how to scale it up should a major outbreak be detected;

(5) recommendations for clear delineation of state and local roles in notifying property owners and enforcing remediation actions;

(6) the best approach to broad public education on the threats of new invasive tree pests, the expected response to an outbreak, the value of trees to our environment, and the promotion of a more diversified tree cover statewide; and

(7) an assessment of funding needs and options for the above activities and possible funding approaches to promote the planting of a more diverse tree cover, along with assisting in the costs of tree removal and replacement for public entities and property owners.

(b) A report and recommendations to the legislative committees with jurisdiction over natural resources and to the Legislative-Citizen Commission on Minnesota Resources shall be due on December 15, 2007.

Subd. 2.

Task force creation.

The chair of the Forest Resources Council and the commissioners of agriculture and natural resources shall jointly appoint the members of the task force, which shall include up to 15 members with representatives of the University of Minnesota; city, township, and county associations; commercial timber and forest industries of varying size; nursery and landscape architecture; arborists and certified tree inspectors; nonprofit organizations engaged in tree advocacy, planting, and education; master gardeners; and the Minnesota Shade Tree Advisory Council and a tribal representative recommended by the Indian Affairs Council.

Representatives of the Departments of Agriculture and Natural Resources shall serve as ex-officio members and assist the task force in its work.

Sec. 160.

ENDOCRINE DISRUPTOR REPORT.

(a) The commissioner of the Pollution Control Agency, in consultation with the commissioner of agriculture, the commissioner of health, the commissioner of natural resources, the University of Minnesota, and the United States Environmental Protection Agency, shall prepare a report on strategies to address endocrine disruptors in waters of the state. The report shall include:

(1) a review of the current literature of known endocrine-disrupting compounds to determine which ones are most likely to be of significance to humans, fish, and wildlife in Minnesota;

(2) a review of scientific studies to determine whether these compounds have the potential to account for known effects on humans, fish, and wildlife in Minnesota;

(3) a review of the comparative risk posed by endocrine-disrupting compounds to the long-term viability of populations of fish and wildlife; and

(4) an evaluation of the practicability and the cost of prevention and remediation strategies for any endocrine-disrupting compounds found in clauses (1) and (2), as well as other potential endocrine disruptors.

(b) By January 15, 2008, the commissioner shall submit the report to the house of representatives and senate committees and divisions with jurisdiction over environment and natural resources policy and finance.

Sec. 161.

EASEMENT REPORT REQUIRED.

By January 1, 2008, the commissioner of natural resources must report to the house and senate committees with jurisdiction over environment and natural resources finance with proposed minimum legal and conservation standards that could be applied to conservation easements acquired with public money.

Sec. 162.

TAX-FORFEITED LANDS LEASE; ITASCA COUNTY.

Notwithstanding Minnesota Statutes, section 282.04, or other law to the contrary, the Itasca County auditor may lease tax-forfeited land to a proposed steel mill in Itasca County for a period of 20 years, for use as a tailings basin and buffer area. A lease entered under this section is renewable.

Sec. 163.

WILD RICE STUDY.

By February 15, 2008, the commissioner of natural resources must prepare a study for natural wild rice that includes:

(1) the current location and estimated acreage and area of natural stands;

(2) potential threats to natural stands, including, but not limited to, development pressure, water levels, pollution, invasive species, and genetically engineered strains; and

(3) recommendations to the house and senate committees with jurisdiction over natural resources on protecting and increasing natural wild rice stands in the state.

In developing the study, the commissioner must contact and ask for comments from the state's wild rice industry, the commissioner of agriculture, local officials with significant areas of wild rice within their jurisdictions, tribal leaders within affected federally recognized tribes, and interested citizens.

EFFECTIVE DATE.

This section is effective the day following final enactment.

Sec. 164.

CONSTRUCTION.

Nothing in sections 140, 141, 142, and 163 affects, alters, or modifies the authorities, responsibilities, obligations, or powers of the state or any political subdivision thereof or any federally recognized tribe.

Sec. 165.

SEPTIC BEST PRACTICES ASSISTANCE.

The commissioner of the Pollution Control Agency shall establish a database of best practices regarding the installation, management, and maintenance of individual sewage treatment systems. The database must be made available to any interested public or private party.

Sec. 166.

RULEMAKING.

Within 90 days of the effective date of this section, the Board of Water and Soil Resources shall adopt rules that amend Minnesota Rules, chapter 8420, to incorporate statute changes and to address the related wetland exemption provisions in Minnesota Rules, parts 8420.0115 to 8420.0210, and the wetland replacement and banking provisions in Minnesota Rules, parts 8420.0500 to 8420.0760. These rules are exempt from the rulemaking provisions of Minnesota Statutes, chapter 14, except that Minnesota Statutes, section 14.386, applies and the proposed rules must be submitted to the senate and house committees having jurisdiction over environment and natural resources at least 30 days prior to being published in the State Register. The amended rules are effective for two years from the date of publication in the State Register unless they are superseded by permanent rules.

EFFECTIVE DATE.

This section is effective the day following final enactment.

Sec. 167.

GREENLEAF LAKE STATE RECREATION AREA.

Subdivision 1.

[85.013] [Subd. 11b.] Greenleaf Lake State Recreation Area.

In addition to the lands designated under Laws 2003, First Special Session chapter 13, section 6, as amended by Laws 2004, chapter 262, article 2, section 10, the following lands are added to the Greenleaf Lake State Recreation Area:

(1) the West 1104.98 feet of Government Lot 4, Section 21, Township 118 North, Range 30 West, Meeker County, Minnesota; and

(2) that part of Government Lot 7 of Section 20, Township 118, Range 30, which lies south of the following described line and its extensions: said line commencing at the southwest corner of said Section 20; thence on an assumed bearing of North 08 degrees 22 minutes 44 seconds West, along the west line of said section, a distance of 1350.00 feet to the point of beginning of the line to be described; thence North 88 degrees 28 minutes 35 seconds East, a distance of 699 feet to the shoreline of Greenleaf Lake and said line terminating thereat; and Government Lot 8 of said section except the following described tract: said tract being that part of said Government Lot 8 lying east of the following described line: said line commencing at the southwest corner of said section; thence easterly, along the south line of said section, a distance of 734.60 feet to the point of beginning of the line to be described; thence north at a right angle, a distance of 100 feet and said line terminating thereat.

Subd. 2.

Management.

The commissioner of natural resources, in consultation with local elected officials and citizens of Meeker County and other interested stakeholders, shall develop a comprehensive management plan that provides for opportunities for outdoor recreation, as defined under Minnesota Statutes, section 86A.03, subdivision 3, in Greenleaf Lake State Recreation Area. The completed management plan shall serve as the master plan for purposes of Minnesota Statutes, section 86A.09.

Sec. 168.

VERMILLION HIGHLANDS WILDLIFE MANAGEMENT AREA.

(a) The following area is established and designated as the Vermillion Highlands Wildlife Management Area, subject to the special permitted uses authorized in this section:

The approximately 2,840 acres owned by the University of Minnesota lying within the area legally described as approximately the southerly 3/4 of the Southwest 1/4 of Section 1, the Southeast 1/4 of Section 2, the East 1/2 of Section 10, Section 11, the West 1/2 of Section 12, Section 13, and Section 14, all in Township 114 North, Range 19 West, Dakota County.

(b) Notwithstanding Minnesota Statutes, section 86A.05, subdivision 8, paragraph (c), permitted uses in the Vermillion Highlands Wildlife Management Area include:

(1) education, outreach, and agriculture with the intent to eventually phase out agriculture leases and plant and restore native prairie;

(2) research by the University of Minnesota or other permitted researchers;

(3) hiking, hunting, fishing, trapping, and other compatible wildlife-related recreation of a natural outdoors experience, without constructing new hard surface trails or roads, and supporting management and improvements;

(4) designated trails for hiking, horseback riding, biking, and cross-country skiing and necessary trailhead support with minimal impact on the permitted uses in clause (3);

(5) shooting sports facilities for sporting clays, skeet, trapshooting, and rifle and pistol shooting, including sanctioned events and training for responsible handling and use of firearms;

(6) grant-in-aid snowmobile trails; and

(7) leases for small-scale farms to market vegetable farming.

(c) With the concurrence of representatives of the University of Minnesota and Dakota County, the commissioner of natural resources may, by posting or rule, restrict the permitted uses as follows:

(1) temporarily close areas or trails, by posting at the access points, to facilitate hunting. When temporarily closing trails under this clause, the commissioner shall avoid closing all trail loops simultaneously whenever practical; or

(2) limit other permitted uses to accommodate hunting and trapping after providing advance public notice. Research conducted by the university may not be limited unless mutually agreed by the commissioner and the University of Minnesota.

(d) Road maintenance within the wildlife management area shall be minimized, with the intent to abandon interior roads when no longer needed for traditional agriculture purposes.

(e) Money collected on leases from lands within the wildlife management area must be kept in a separate account and spent within the wildlife management area under direction of the representatives listed in paragraph (c). $200,000 of this money may be transferred to the commissioner of natural resources for a master planning process and resource inventory of the land identified in Minnesota Statutes, section 137.50, subdivision 6, in order to provide needed prairie and wetland restoration. The commissioner must work with affected officials from the University of Minnesota and Dakota County to complete these requirements and inform landowners and lessees about the planning process.

(f) Notwithstanding Minnesota Statutes, sections 97A.061 and 477A.11, the state of Minnesota shall not provide payments in lieu of taxes for the lands described in paragraph (a).

Sec. 169.

INFORMATION SHARING.

On or before August 1, 2007, the commissioner of health, the Pollution Control Agency, and the University of Minnesota are requested to jointly develop and sign a memorandum of understanding declaring their intent to share new and existing environmental hazard, exposure, and health outcome data, within applicable data privacy laws, and to cooperate and communicate effectively to ensure sufficient clarity and understanding of the data by divisions and offices within both departments. The signed memorandum of understanding shall be reported to the chairs and ranking members of the senate and house of representatives committees having jurisdiction over judiciary, environment, and health and human services.

Sec. 170.

REPEALER.

(a) Minnesota Statutes 2006, sections 18G.16; and 89.51, subdivision 8, are repealed.

(b) Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 103G.2241, subdivision 8, is repealed the day following final enactment.

(c) Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 85.012, subdivision 24b, is repealed.

ARTICLE 2

ENERGY

Section 1.

SUMMARY OF APPROPRIATIONS.

The amounts shown in this section summarize direct appropriations, by fund, made in this article.

2008 2009 Total
General $ 37,870,000 $ 29,459,000 $ 67,329,000
Petroleum Tank Cleanup 1,084,000 1,084,000 2,168,000
Workers' Compensation 835,000 835,000 1,670,000
Special Revenue 7,725,000 7,725,000 15,450,000
Total $ 47,514,000 $ 39,103,000 $ 86,617,000

Sec. 2.

ENERGY FINANCE APPROPRIATIONS.

The sums shown in the columns marked "Appropriations" are appropriated to the agencies and for the purposes specified in this article. The appropriations are from the general fund, or another named fund, and are available for the fiscal years indicated for each purpose. The figures "2008" and "2009" used in this article mean that the appropriations listed under them are available for the fiscal year ending June 30, 2008, or June 30, 2009, respectively. "The first year" is fiscal year 2008. "The second year" is fiscal year 2009. "The biennium" is fiscal years 2008 and 2009. Appropriations for the fiscal year ending June 30, 2007, are effective the day following final enactment.

APPROPRIATIONS
Available for the Year
Ending June 30
2008 2009

Sec. 3.

DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE.

Subdivision 1.

Total Appropriation

$ 42,167,000 $ 33,670,000
Appropriations by Fund
2008 2009
General 32,523,000 24,026,000
Petroleum Cleanup 1,084,000 1,084,000
Workers' Compensation 835,000 835,000
Special Revenue 7,725,000 7,725,000

The amounts that may be spent for each purpose are specified in the following subdivisions.

Subd. 2.

Financial Examinations

6,489,000 6,637,000

Subd. 3.

Petroleum Tank Release Cleanup Board

1,084,000 1,084,000

This appropriation is from the petroleum tank release cleanup fund.

Subd. 4.

Administrative Services

4,508,000 4,604,000

Subd. 5.

Market Assurance

6,950,000 7,097,000
Appropriations by Fund
General 6,115,000 6,262,000
Workers' Compensation 835,000 835,000

Subd. 6.

Energy and Telecommunications

$ 23,036,000 $ 14,148,000
Appropriations by Fund
General 15,411,000 6,523,000
Special Revenue 7,625,000 7,625,000

The utility subject to Minnesota Statutes, section 116C.779, shall transfer $7,625,000 in fiscal year 2008 and $7,625,000 in fiscal year 2009 to the Department of Commerce on a schedule to be determined by the commissioner of commerce. The funds must be deposited in the special revenue fund and are appropriated to the commissioner for grants to promote renewable energy projects and community energy outreach and assistance. Of the amounts identified:

(1) $500,000 each year for capital grants for on-farm biogas recovery facilities; eligible projects will be selected in coordination with the Department of Agriculture and the Pollution Control Agency;

(2) $500,000 each year to provide financial rebates to new solar electricity projects;

(3) $625,000 each year for continued funding of community energy technical assistance and outreach on renewable energy and energy efficiency, as described in section 27. Of this amount, $125,000 is for technical assistance in the metropolitan area;

(4) $1,000,000 each year is for technical analysis and demonstration funding for automotive technology projects, with a special focus on plug-in hybrid electric vehicles and to study environmental-friendly manufacturing and assembly processes to identify ones that could employ workers formerly employed at the St. Paul Ford manufacturing plant and other large manufacturing facilities in Minnesota;

(5) $750,000 in the first year is for the purpose of preparing the hydrogen road map and making grants under Minnesota Statutes, section 216B.813;

(6) $2,000,000 in the first year is for deposit with the rural wind energy development revolving loan fund under Minnesota Statutes, section 216C.39;

(7) $2,250,000 the first year and $2,000,000 the second year are to provide competitive, cost-share grants to fund renewable energy research in Minnesota. These grants must be awarded by a three-member panel made up of the commissioners of commerce, pollution control, and agriculture, or their designees. Grant applications must be ranked and grants issued according to how well the applications meet state energy policy research goals established by the commissioners, the quality and experience of the research teams, the cross-interdisciplinary and cross-institutional nature of the research teams, and the ability of the research team to leverage nonstate funds; and

(8) $3,000,000 the second year is for a grant to the Board of Regents of the University of Minnesota for the Initiative for Renewable Energy and the Environment. The grant is for the purposes set forth in Minnesota Statutes, section 216B.241, subdivision 6. The appropriation is available until spent. The budget for this grant to the Board of Regents of the University of Minnesota for the Initiative for Renewable Energy and the Environment is $5,000,000 each year in the 2010-2011 fiscal biennium.

As a condition of this grant, beginning in the 2010-2011 biennium, the Initiative for Renewable Energy and the Environment must set aside at least 15 percent of the funds received annually under the grant for qualified projects conducted at a rural campus or experiment station. Any amount of the set aside funds that has not been awarded to a rural campus or experiment station at the end of the fiscal year must revert back to the initiative for its exclusive use.

$1,500,000 the first year and $1,500,000 the second year are for E85 cost-share grants. The commissioner may reimburse owners of gasoline service stations for up to 75 percent of the total cost of installing an E85 pump, including the tank and any related components, up to a maximum of $15,000 per E85 pump. Notwithstanding Minnesota Statutes, section 16A.28, this appropriation is available until expended. Up to ten percent of the funds may be used for cost-share grants to convert or install underground tanks at retail gasoline service stations storing biodiesel fuel that is at least 99.9 percent biodiesel fuel by volume for on-site blending and for dispensing systems at retail gasoline service stations that dispense biodiesel fuel blends of at least ten percent biodiesel fuel by volume. In awarding grants, the commissioner of commerce must consult with the Minnesota Soybean Growers Association and may consult with other organizations deemed appropriate. This is a onetime appropriation.

$4,500,000 the first year is for a onetime grant to the St. Paul Port Authority in part for a study related to a steam and electrical energy facility to supply energy to a customer using steam in a paper recycling operation.

The port authority shall convene and regularly involve a citizen advisory committee composed of members recommended by St. Paul district councils 11, 12, 13, and 14 and other members as appropriate to advise on the scope of the study. The citizen advisory committee must meet regularly throughout the course of the study and the development of recommendations. The citizen advisory committee shall have the right to include its separate recommendations as part of the port authority recommendations submitted at the public meeting and to the St. Paul City Council.

The study shall:

(1) assess the economic and technical feasibility of various fuel types to power the plant;

(2) provide a full description and analysis of each fuel type and their respective economic and noneconomic impacts;

(3) provide a full description and analysis of each fuel type and their respective environmental emissions, including carbon dioxide, and the cost of controlling those emissions that affect human health;

(4) describe public subsidies related to the production and use of each fuel type;

(5) describe potential energy efficiency improvement that can be made to the paper recycling operation and subsidies available for each improvement; and

(6) evaluate additional uses for the steam and electricity produced at the facility and the cost of infrastructure needed to implement the additional uses.

In addition, the grant may be used for environmental review, permitting, preliminary engineering, and development of total project cost estimates, including project design and engineering, other preliminary work, and a preliminary financing plan for the steam and electricity producing facility. The St. Paul Port Authority shall present the findings of its analysis and its preferred alternative for an eligible energy technology fuel mix in at least two public meetings that must be held in the area encompassing districts 11, 12, 13, and 14 in the city of St. Paul. "Eligible energy technology" has the meaning given in Minnesota Statutes, section 216B.1691, subdivision 1, except that it does not include mixed municipal solid waste as an eligible energy technology. The recommendation of the St. Paul Port Authority concerning its preferred alternative fuel mix must be based on the alternative that has the least environmental impact consistent with the economic viability and technical feasibility of the facility. Testimony shall be taken at the meetings from citizens who live in the affected communities. Resolutions concerning the facility from district councils 11, 12, 13, and 14 must be solicited by the city council. Construction of the facility may not be commenced unless and until the St. Paul City Council has adopted a resolution approving the construction after consideration of the findings of the port authority, resolutions from the district councils, and other public input. The appropriation does not cancel and is available until expended. Of this amount, $500,000 is transferred to the Department of Natural Resources for the Ecological Services Division to prepare, authorize, and implement habitat restoration plans on public or private properties to fulfill ecological principles of restoration ecology, while providing roadside access to the byproduct of the management actions at no cost to the operator of a biomass-fueled cogeneration facility located in St. Paul. The division may provide grants or otherwise transfer some or all of these funds to other public or private entities to accomplish these purposes. If a higher value nonbiomass market is available for some of the byproduct of this management, the division is authorized to sell the material to that market, provided that all of the proceeds are spent for the further purposes of this appropriation. The nonbiomass market sales of material from this management cannot exceed 20 percent by weight of the total byproducts produced by all approved activities under this appropriation. The restoration activities shall take place on land located within 75 miles by road of the city of St. Paul. The division shall consult with the operator of the biomass facility and other appropriate parties regarding planned projects to be funded with this appropriation. The division shall report annually to the legislative policy and finance committees for natural resources and energy regarding the expenditures and results of the program. This appropriation does not cancel but is available until spent.

$150,000 the first year is appropriated to the commissioner of commerce for grants for demonstration projects of electric vehicles with advanced transmission technologies incorporating, if feasible, batteries, converters, and other components developed in Minnesota. Funds may be expended under the grants only if grantees enter into agreements specifying that commercial production of these vehicles and components will, to the extent possible, take place in Minnesota.

(a) $1,000,000 each year is to the Center for Rural Policy and Development at Minnesota State University at Mankato to make a grant to a nonprofit organization with experience dealing with energy and community wind issues to design and implement a rural wind energy development assistance program. This is a onetime only appropriation. The program must be designed to maximize rural economic development and stabilize rural community institutions, including hospitals and schools, by increasing the income of local residents and increasing local tax revenues. The grant may be disbursed in two installments. The program must provide assistance to rural entities seeking to develop wind energy electric generation projects and to sell the energy from the projects. Among other strategies, the program may consider combining rural entities and others into groups with the size and market power necessary for planning and developing significant rural wind energy projects. * (The text "each year" in the first line of the preceding paragraph (a) was indicated as vetoed by the governor.

(b) The program must provide assistance by, among other things:

(1) providing legal, engineering, and financial services;

(2) identifying target communities with favorable wind resources, community interest, and local political support;

(3) providing assistance to reserve, obtain, and assure the maintenance over time of wind turbines;

(4) creating market opportunities for utilities to meet their renewable energy obligations through purchases of rural community wind;

(5) assisting in the negotiation of fair power purchase agreements;

(6) facilitating transmission interconnection and delivery of energy from rural and community wind projects; and

(7) lowering the market risk facing potential wind investors by supporting local wind development from start to finish.

The grantee must demonstrate an ability to sustain program functions with ongoing revenue from sources other than state funding and shall provide a 35 percent grant match in the first year. The grant must be awarded on a competitive basis. The center must use best practices regarding grant management functions, including selection and monitoring of the grantee, compliance review, and financial oversight. Grant management fees are limited to 2.5 percent of the grant.

(c) The commissioner of commerce shall monitor the activities of the rural wind energy development assistance program created under paragraphs (a) to (c). By November 1, 2008, the commissioner shall submit an evaluation of the program to the chairs of the house of representatives and senate committees with jurisdiction over energy policy and finance, including recommendations for legislative or administrative action to better achieve the program goals described in paragraph (a).

$1,000,000 in fiscal year 2008 is for distribution to eligible households for home heating assistance during the 2007 calendar year. The commissioner must distribute funds to eligible households according to the formula developed for the distribution of the federal Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program for fiscal year 2008. This appropriation is available until spent.

$3,250,000 the first year is for the renewable hydrogen initiative in Minnesota Statutes, section 216B.813, to fund the competitive grant program included in that section. The commissioner may use up to two percent of the competitive grant program appropriation for grant administration and to develop and implement the renewable hydrogen road map. This is a onetime appropriation and is available until expended.

$50,000 the first year is a onetime appropriation for a comprehensive technical, economic, and environmental analysis of the benefits to be derived from greater use in this state of geothermal heat pump systems for heating and cooling air and heating water. The analysis must:

(1) estimate the extent of geothermal heat pump systems currently installed in this state in residential, commercial, and institutional buildings;

(2) estimate energy and economic savings of geothermal heat pump systems in comparison with fossil fuel-based heating and cooling systems, including electricity use, on a capital cost and life-cycle cost basis, for both newly constructed and retrofitted residential, commercial, and institutional buildings;

(3) compare the emission of pollutants and greenhouse gases from geothermal heat pump systems and fossil fuel-based heating and cooling systems;

(4) identify financial assistance available from state and federal sources and Minnesota utilities to defray the costs of installing geothermal heat pump systems;

(5) identify Minnesota firms currently manufacturing or installing the physical components of geothermal heat pump systems and estimate the economic development potential in this state if demand for such systems increases significantly;

(6) identify the barriers to more widespread adoption of geothermal heat pump systems in this state and suggest strategies to overcome those barriers; and

(7) make recommendations for legislative action.

Not later than March 15, 2008, the commissioner shall submit the results of the analysis in a report to the chairs of the senate and house of representatives committees with primary jurisdiction over energy policy.

$45,000 the first year is a onetime appropriation for a grant to Linden Hills Power and Light for preliminary engineering design work and other technical and legal services required for a community digester and neighborhood district heating and cooling system demonstration project in the Linden Hills neighborhood of Minneapolis. Funds may be expended upon a determination by the commissioner of commerce that the project is technically and economically feasible. A portion of the appropriation may be used to expand the scope of the project feasibility study to include portions of adjacent communities including St. Louis Park and Edina. * (The preceding text beginning "$45,000 the first year" was indicated as vetoed by the governor.)

Subd. 7.

Telecommunications Access Minnesota

100,000 100,000

$100,000 the first year and $100,000 the second year are for transfer to the commissioner of human services to supplement the ongoing operational expenses of the Minnesota Commission Serving Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing People. This appropriation is from the telecommunication access Minnesota fund, and is added to the commission's base.

Sec. 4.

PUBLIC UTILITIES COMMISSION

$ 5,347,000 $ 5,433,000

Sec. 5.

NEXTGEN ENERGY BOARD

By October 1 of 2007 and 2008, an entity receiving renewable development funds to conduct energy research under this article must present a research plan outlining the activities to be conducted with those funds, and any results from research completed with those funds during the previous year, to the NextGen Energy Board established under Minnesota Statutes, section 41A.05, for its review and comment.

Sec. 6.

[16C.141] EMPLOYEE SUGGESTIONS; ENERGY SAVINGS INCENTIVE PROGRAM.

Subdivision 1.

Creation of program.

The commissioner of administration must implement a program using best practices and develop policies under which state employees may receive cash awards for making suggestions that result in documented cost savings to state agencies from reduced energy usage in state-owned buildings. The program must be structured to provide state employees an opportunity to receive a cash award for suggestions that are implemented and result in documented cost savings to state agencies from reduced energy use in state-owned buildings. The program must also include methods to document submissions of suggestions and energy and cost savings resulting from the implementation of employee suggestions.

Subd. 2.

Funding.

To the extent necessary to fund the program under this section, the commissioner of administration, with approval of the commissioner of finance, may transfer a portion of the documented cost savings resulting from a suggestion under this section from the general services revolving fund to an energy savings reward account. Money in the energy savings reward account is appropriated to the commissioner for purposes of making cash rewards and paying the commissioner's incentive program developments costs and administrative expenses under this section.

Subd. 3.

Report to legislature.

The commissioner of administration shall report to the chairs of the senate and house of representatives committees with jurisdiction over energy policy by January 1, 2008, on the development of the incentive program, and by January 15 each year thereafter on the implementation of this section, including the ideas submitted and energy savings realized.

Subd. 4.

Minnesota State Colleges and Universities.

This section does not apply to the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities, except to the extent the Board of Trustees of the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities provides that the section does apply.

Subd. 5.

Repeal.

This section is repealed July 1, 2009.

Sec. 7.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 116C.775, is amended to read:

116C.775 SHIPMENT PRIORITIES; PRAIRIE ISLAND NUCLEAR PLANTS.

If a storage or disposal site becomes available outside of the state to accept high-level nuclear waste stored at Prairie Island or Monticello, the waste contained in dry casks shall be shipped to that site before the shipment of any waste from the spent nuclear fuel storage pool. Once waste is shipped that was contained in a cask, the cask must be decommissioned and not used for further storage.

Sec. 8.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 116C.777, is amended to read:

116C.777 SITE.

The spent fuel contents of dry casks located on Prairie Island must be moved immediately upon the availability of another site for storage of the spent fuel that is not located on Prairie Island or at Monticello.

Sec. 9.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 116C.779, subdivision 1, is amended to read:

Subdivision 1.

Renewable development account.

(a) The public utility that owns the Prairie Island nuclear generating plant must transfer to a renewable development account $16,000,000 annually each year the plant is in operation, and $7,500,000 each year the plant is not in operation if ordered by the commission pursuant to paragraph (c) (d). The fund transfer must be made if nuclear waste is stored in a dry cask at the independent spent-fuel storage facility at Prairie Island for any part of a year. Funds in the account may be expended only for development of renewable energy sources. Preference must be given to development of renewable energy source projects located within the state. The utility that owns a nuclear generating plant is eligible to apply for renewable development fund grants. The utility's proposals must be evaluated by the renewable development fund board in a manner consistent with that used to evaluate other renewable development fund project proposals.

(b) The public utility that owns the Monticello nuclear generating plant must transfer to the renewable development account $350,000 each year for each dry cask containing spent fuel that is located at the Monticello nuclear power plant for each year the plant is in operation, and $5,250,000 each year the plant is not in operation if ordered by the commission pursuant to paragraph (d). The fund transfer must be made if nuclear waste is stored in a dry cask at the independent spent-fuel storage facility at Monticello for any part of a year.

(b) (c) Expenditures from the account may only be made after approval by order of the Public Utilities Commission upon a petition by the public utility.

(c) (d) After discontinuation of operation of the Prairie Island nuclear plant or the Monticello nuclear plant and each year spent nuclear fuel is stored in dry cask at the Prairie Island discontinued facility, the commission shall require the public utility to pay $7,500,000 for the discontinued Prairie Island facility and $5,250,000 for the discontinued Monticello facility for any year in which the commission finds, by the preponderance of the evidence, that the public utility did not make a good faith effort to remove the spent nuclear fuel stored at Prairie Island the facility to a permanent or interim storage site out of the state. This determination shall be made at least every two years.

Sec. 10.

[173.0851] STATE ENERGY CITY.

The city of Elk River is designated as a state energy city.

Sec. 11.

[216B.091] MONTHLY REPORTS.

(a) Each public utility must report the following data on residential customers to the commission monthly, in a format determined by the commission:

(1) number of customers;

(2) number and total amount of accounts past due;

(3) average customer past due amount;

(4) total revenue received from the low-income home energy assistance program and other sources contributing to the bills of low-income persons;

(5) average monthly bill;

(6) total sales revenue;

(7) total write-offs due to uncollectible bills;

(8) number of disconnection notices mailed;

(9) number of accounts disconnected for nonpayment;

(10) number of accounts reconnected to service; and

(11) number of accounts that remain disconnected, grouped by the duration of disconnection, as follows:

(i) 1-30 days;

(ii) 31-60 days; and

(iii) more than 60 days.

(b) Monthly reports for October through April must also include the following data:

(1) number of cold weather protection requests;

(2) number of payment arrangement requests received and granted;

(3) number of right to appeal notices mailed to customers;

(4) number of reconnect request appeals withdrawn;

(5) number of occupied heat-affected accounts disconnected for 24 hours or more for electric and natural gas service separately;

(6) number of occupied non-heat-affected accounts disconnected for 24 hours or more for electric and gas service separately;

(7) number of customers granted cold weather rule protection;

(8) number of customers disconnected who did not request cold weather rule protection; and

(9) number of customers disconnected who requested cold weather rule protection.

(c) The data reported under paragraphs (a) and (b) is presumed to be accurate upon submission and must be made available through the commission's electronic filing system.

Sec. 12.

[216B.0951] PROPANE PREPURCHASE PROGRAM.

Subdivision 1.

Establishment.

The commissioner of commerce shall operate, or contract to operate, a propane fuel prepurchase fuel program. The commissioner may contract at any time of the year to purchase the lesser of one-third of the liquid propane fuel consumed by low-income home energy assistance program recipients during the previous heating season or the amount that can be purchased with available funds. The propane fuel prepurchase program must be available statewide through each local agency that administers the energy assistance program. The commissioner may decide to limit or not engage in prepurchasing if the commissioner finds that there is a reasonable likelihood that prepurchasing will not provide fuel-cost savings.

Subd. 2.

Hedge account.

The commissioner may establish a hedge account with realized program savings due to prepurchasing. The account must be used to compensate program recipients an amount up to the difference in cost for fuel provided to the recipient if winter-delivered fuel prices are lower than the prepurchase or summer-fill price. No more than ten percent of the aggregate prepurchase program savings may be used to establish the hedge account.

Subd. 3.

Report.

The Department of Commerce shall issue a report by June 30, 2008, made available electronically on its Web site and in print upon request, that contains the following information:

(1) the cost per gallon of prepurchased fuel;

(2) the total gallons of fuel prepurchased;

(3) the average cost of propane each month between October and the following April;

(4) the number of energy assistance program households receiving prepurchased fuel; and

(5) the average savings accruing or benefit increase provided to energy assistance households.

Sec. 13.

[216B.096] COLD WEATHER RULE; PUBLIC UTILITIES.

Subdivision 1.

Scope.

This section applies only to residential customers of a utility.

Subd. 2.

Definitions.

(a) The terms used in this section have the meanings given them in this subdivision.

(b) "Cold weather period" means the period from October 15 through April 15 of the following year.

(c) "Customer" means a residential customer of a utility.

(d) "Disconnection" means the involuntary loss of utility heating service as a result of a physical act by a utility to discontinue service. Disconnection includes installation of a service or load limiter or any device that limits or interrupts utility service in any way.

(e) "Household income" means the combined income, as defined in section 290A.03, subdivision 3, of all residents of the customer's household, computed on an annual basis. Household income does not include any amount received for energy assistance.

(f) "Reasonably timely payment" means payment within five working days of agreed-upon due dates.

(g) "Reconnection" means the restoration of utility heating service after it has been disconnected.

(h) "Summary of rights and responsibilities" means a commission-approved notice that contains, at a minimum, the following:

(1) an explanation of the provisions of subdivision 5;

(2) an explanation of no-cost and low-cost methods to reduce the consumption of energy;

(3) a third-party notice;

(4) ways to avoid disconnection;

(5) information regarding payment agreements;

(6) an explanation of the customer's right to appeal a determination of income by the utility and the right to appeal if the utility and the customer cannot arrive at a mutually acceptable payment agreement; and

(7) a list of names and telephone numbers for county and local energy assistance and weatherization providers in each county served by the utility.

(i) "Third-party notice" means a commission-approved notice containing, at a minimum, the following information:

(1) a statement that the utility will send a copy of any future notice of proposed disconnection of utility heating service to a third party designated by the residential customer;

(2) instructions on how to request this service; and

(3) a statement that the residential customer should contact the person the customer intends to designate as the third-party contact before providing the utility with the party's name.

(j) "Utility" means a public utility as defined in section 216B.02, and a cooperative electric association electing to be a public utility under section 216B.026. Utility also means a municipally owned gas or electric utility for nonresident consumers of the municipally owned utility and a cooperative electric association when a complaint in connection with utility heating service during the cold weather period is filed under section 216B.17, subdivision 6 or 6a.

(k) "Utility heating service" means natural gas or electricity used as a primary heating source, including electricity service necessary to operate gas heating equipment, for the customer's primary residence.

(l) "Working days" means Mondays through Fridays, excluding legal holidays. The day of receipt of a personally served notice and the day of mailing of a notice shall not be counted in calculating working days.

Subd. 3.

Utility obligations before cold weather period.

Each year, between September 1 and October 15, each utility must provide all customers, personally or by first class mail, a summary of rights and responsibilities. The summary must also be provided to all new residential customers when service is initiated.

Subd. 4.

Notice before disconnection during cold weather period.

Before disconnecting utility heating service during the cold weather period, a utility must provide, personally or by first class mail, a commission-approved notice to a customer, in easy-to-understand language, that contains, at a minimum, the date of the scheduled disconnection, the amount due, and a summary of rights and responsibilities.

Subd. 5.

Cold weather rule.

(a) During the cold weather period, a utility may not disconnect and must reconnect utility heating service of a customer whose household income is at or below 50 percent of the state median income if the customer enters into and makes reasonably timely payments under a mutually acceptable payment agreement with the utility that is based on the financial resources and circumstances of the household; provided that, a utility may not require a customer to pay more than ten percent of the household income toward current and past utility bills for utility heating service.

(b) A utility may accept more than ten percent of the household income as the payment arrangement amount if agreed to by the customer.

(c) The customer or a designated third party may request a modification of the terms of a payment agreement previously entered into if the customer's financial circumstances have changed or the customer is unable to make reasonably timely payments.

(d) The payment agreement terminates at the expiration of the cold weather period unless a longer period is mutually agreed to by the customer and the utility.

Subd. 6.

Verification of income.

(a) In verifying a customer's household income, a utility may:

(1) accept the signed statement of a customer that the customer is income eligible;

(2) obtain income verification from a local energy assistance provider or a government agency;

(3) consider one or more of the following:

(i) the most recent income tax return filed by members of the customer's household;

(ii) for each employed member of the customer's household, paycheck stubs for the last two months or a written statement from the employer reporting wages earned during the preceding two months;

(iii) documentation that the customer receives a pension from the Department of Human Services, the Social Security Administration, the Veteran's Administration, or other pension provider;

(iv) a letter showing the customer's dismissal from a job or other documentation of unemployment; or

(v) other documentation that supports the customer's declaration of income eligibility.

(b) A customer who receives energy assistance benefits under any federal, state, or county government programs in which eligibility is defined as household income at or below 50 percent of state median income is deemed to be automatically eligible for protection under this section and no other verification of income may be required.

Subd. 7.

Prohibitions and requirements.

(a) This subdivision applies during the cold weather period.

(b) A utility may not charge a deposit or delinquency charge to a customer who has entered into a payment agreement or a customer who has appealed to the commission under subdivision 8.

(c) A utility may not disconnect service during the following periods:

(1) during the pendency of any appeal under subdivision 8;

(2) earlier than ten working days after a utility has deposited in first class mail, or seven working days after a utility has personally served, the notice required under subdivision 4 to a customer in an occupied dwelling;

(3) earlier than ten working days after the utility has deposited in first class mail the notice required under subdivision 4 to the recorded billing address of the customer, if the utility has reasonably determined from an on-site inspection that the dwelling is unoccupied;

(4) on a Friday, unless the utility makes personal contact with, and offers a payment agreement consistent with this section to the customer;

(5) on a Saturday, Sunday, holiday, or the day before a holiday;

(6) when utility offices are closed;

(7) when no utility personnel are available to resolve disputes, enter into payment agreements, accept payments, and reconnect service; or

(8) when commission offices are closed.

(d) A utility may not discontinue service until the utility investigates whether the dwelling is actually occupied. At a minimum, the investigation must include one visit by the utility to the dwelling during normal working hours. If no contact is made and there is reason to believe that the dwelling is occupied, the utility must attempt a second contact during nonbusiness hours. If personal contact is made, the utility representative must provide notice required under subdivision 4 and, if the utility representative is not authorized to enter into a payment agreement, the telephone number the customer can call to establish a payment agreement.

(e) Each utility must reconnect utility service if, following disconnection, the dwelling is found to be occupied and the customer agrees to enter into a payment agreement or appeals to the commission because the customer and the utility are unable to agree on a payment agreement.

Subd. 8.

Disputes; customer appeals.

(a) A utility must provide the customer and any designated third party with a commission-approved written notice of the right to appeal:

(1) a utility determination that the customer's household income is more than 50 percent of state median household income; or

(2) when the utility and customer are unable to agree on the establishment or modification of a payment agreement.

(b) A customer's appeal must be filed with the commission no later than seven working days after the customer's receipt of a personally served appeal notice, or within ten working days after the utility has deposited a first class mail appeal notice.

(c) The commission must determine all customer appeals on an informal basis, within 20 working days of receipt of a customer's written appeal. In making its determination, the commission must consider one or more of the factors in subdivision 6.

(d) Notwithstanding any other law, following an appeals decision adverse to the customer, a utility may not disconnect utility heating service for seven working days after the utility has personally served a disconnection notice, or for ten working days after the utility has deposited a first class mail notice. The notice must contain, in easy-to-understand language, the date on or after which disconnection will occur, the reason for disconnection, and ways to avoid disconnection.

Subd. 8a.

Cooperative and municipal disputes.

Complaints in connection with utility heating service during the cold weather period filed against a municipal or a cooperative electric association with the commission under section 216B.17, subdivision 6 or 6a, are governed by section 216B.097.

Subd. 9.

Customers above 50 percent of state median income.

During the cold weather period, a customer whose household income is above 50 percent of state median income:

(1) has the right to a payment agreement that takes into consideration any extenuating circumstances of the household; and

(2) may not be disconnected and must be reconnected if the customer makes timely payments under a payment agreement accepted by a utility.

Subdivision 7, paragraph (b), does not apply to customers whose household income is above 50 percent of state median income.

Subd. 10.

Reporting.

Annually on November 1, a utility must electronically file with the commission a report, in a format specified by the commission, specifying the number of utility heating service customers whose service is disconnected or remains disconnected for nonpayment as of October 1 and October 15. If customers remain disconnected on October 15, a utility must file a report each week between November 1 and the end of the cold weather period specifying:

(1) the number of utility heating service customers that are or remain disconnected from service for nonpayment; and

(2) the number of utility heating service customers that are reconnected to service each week. The utility may discontinue weekly reporting if the number of utility heating service customers that are or remain disconnected reaches zero before the end of the cold weather period.

The data reported under this subdivision are presumed to be accurate upon submission and must be made available through the commission's electronic filing system.

Sec. 14.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 216B.097, subdivision 1, is amended to read:

Subdivision 1.

Application; notice to residential customer.

(a) A municipal utility or a cooperative electric association must not disconnect and must reconnect the utility service of a residential customer during the period between October 15 and April 15 if the disconnection affects the primary heat source for the residential unit when and all of the following conditions are met:

(1) the customer has declared inability to pay on forms provided by the utility. For the purposes of this clause, a customer that is receiving energy assistance is deemed to have demonstrated an inability to pay;

(2) The household income of the customer is less than at or below 50 percent of the state median household income;. A municipal utility or cooperative electric association utility may (i) verify income on forms it provides or (ii) obtain

(3) verification of income may be conducted by from the local energy assistance provider or the utility, unless the. A customer is automatically eligible for protection against disconnection as a recipient of deemed to meet the income requirements of this clause if the customer receives any form of public assistance, including energy assistance, that uses an income eligibility in an amount threshold set at or below the income eligibility in clause (2) 50 percent of the state median household income;

(4) (2) A customer whose account is current for the billing period immediately prior to October 15 or who, at any time, enters into and makes reasonably timely payments under a payment schedule agreement that considers the financial resources of the household and is reasonably current with payments under the schedule; and

(5) the (3) A customer receives referrals to energy assistance programs, weatherization, conservation, or other programs likely to reduce the customer's energy bills.

(b) A municipal utility or a cooperative electric association must, between August 15 and October 15 of each year, notify all residential customers of the provisions of this section.

Sec. 15.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 216B.097, subdivision 3, is amended to read:

Subd. 3.

Restrictions if disconnection necessary.

(a) If a residential customer must be involuntarily disconnected between October 15 and April 15 for failure to comply with the provisions of subdivision 1, the disconnection must not occur:

(1) on a Friday or on the day before a holiday, unless the customer declines to enter into a payment agreement offered that day in person or via personal contact by telephone by a municipal utility or cooperative electric association;

(2) on a weekend, holiday, or the day before a holiday;

(3) when utility offices are closed; or

(4) after the close of business on a day when disconnection is permitted, unless a field representative of a municipal utility or cooperative electric association who is authorized to enter into a payment agreement, accept payment, and continue service, offers a payment agreement to the customer.

Further, the disconnection must not occur until at least 20 days after the notice required in subdivision 2 has been mailed to the customer or 15 days after the notice has been personally delivered to the customer.

(b) If a customer does not respond to a disconnection notice, the customer must not be disconnected until the utility investigates whether the residential unit is actually occupied. If the unit is found to be occupied, the utility must immediately inform the occupant of the provisions of this section. If the unit is unoccupied, the utility must give seven days' written notice of the proposed disconnection to the local energy assistance provider before making a disconnection.

(c) If, prior to disconnection, a customer appeals a notice of involuntary disconnection, as provided by the utility's established appeal procedure, the utility must not disconnect until the appeal is resolved.

Sec. 16.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 216B.098, subdivision 4, is amended to read:

Subd. 4.

Undercharges.

(a) A utility shall offer a payment agreement to customers who have been undercharged if no culpable conduct by the customer or resident of the customer's household caused the undercharge. The agreement must cover a period equal to the time over which the undercharge occurred or a different time period that is mutually agreeable to the customer and the utility, except that the duration of a payment agreement offered by a utility to a customer whose household income is at or below 50 percent of state median household income must consider the financial circumstances of the customer's household.

(b) No interest or delinquency fee may be charged under this as part of an undercharge agreement under this subdivision.

(c) If a customer inquiry or complaint results in the utility's discovery of the undercharge, the utility may bill for undercharges incurred after the date of the inquiry or complaint only if the utility began investigating the inquiry or complaint within a reasonable time after when it was made.

Sec. 17.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 216B.812, subdivision 1, is amended to read:

Subdivision 1.

Early purchase and deployment of renewable hydrogen, fuel cells, and related technologies by the state.

(a) The Department of Commerce, in conjunction coordination with the Department of Administration and the Pollution Control Agency, shall identify opportunities for demonstrating the use of deploying renewable hydrogen, fuel cells, and related technologies within state-owned facilities, vehicle fleets, and operations in ways that demonstrate their commercial performance and economics.

(b) The Department of Commerce shall recommend to the Department of Administration, when feasible, the purchase and demonstration deployment of hydrogen, fuel cells, and related technologies, when feasible, in ways that strategically contribute to realizing Minnesota's hydrogen economy goal as set forth in section 216B.8109, and which contribute to the following nonexclusive list of objectives:

(1) provide needed performance data to the marketplace;

(2) identify code and regulatory issues to be resolved;

(3) foster economic development and job creation in the state;

(4) raise public awareness of renewable hydrogen, fuel cells, and related technologies; or

(5) reduce emissions of carbon dioxide and other pollutants.

(c) The Department of Commerce and the Pollution Control Agency shall also recommend to the Department of Administration changes to the state's procurement guidelines and contracts in order to facilitate the purchase and deployment of cost-effective renewable hydrogen, fuel cells, and related technologies by all levels of government.

Sec. 18.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 216B.16, subdivision 10, is amended to read:

Subd. 10.

Intervenor payment compensation.

(a) A nonprofit organization or an individual granted formal intervenor status by the commission is eligible to receive compensation.

(b) The commission may order a utility to pay all or a portion of a party's intervention compensate all or part of an eligible intervenor's reasonable costs not to exceed $20,000 per intervenor in any proceeding of participation in a general rate case that comes before the commission when the commission finds that the intervenor has materially assisted the commission's deliberation and the intervenor has insufficient financial resources to afford the costs of intervention and when a lack of compensation would present financial hardship to the intervenor. Compensation may not exceed $50,000 for a single intervenor in any proceeding. For the purpose of this subdivision, "materially assisted" means that the intervenor's participation and presentation was useful and seriously considered, or otherwise substantially contributed to the commission's deliberations in the proceeding.

(c) In determining whether an intervenor has materially assisted the commission's deliberation, the commission must consider, among other factors, whether:

(1) the intervenor represented an interest that would not otherwise have been adequately represented;

(2) the evidence or arguments presented or the positions taken by the intervenor were an important factor in producing a fair decision;

(3) the intervenor's position promoted a public purpose or policy;

(4) the evidence presented, arguments made, issues raised, or positions taken by the intervenor would not have been a part of the record without the intervenor's participation; and

(5) the administrative law judge or the commission adopted, in whole or in part, a position advocated by the intervenor.

(d) In determining whether the absence of compensation would present financial hardship to the intervenor, the commission must consider:

(1) whether the costs presented in the intervenor's claim reflect reasonable fees for attorneys and expert witnesses and other reasonable costs; and

(2) the ratio between the costs of intervention and the intervenor's unrestricted funds.

(e) An intervenor seeking compensation must file a request and an affidavit of service with the commission, and serve a copy of the request on each party to the proceeding. The request must be filed 30 days after the later of (1) the expiration of the period within which a petition for rehearing, amendment, vacation, reconsideration, or reargument must be filed or (2) the date the commission issues an order following rehearing, amendment, vacation, reconsideration, or reargument.

(f) The compensation request must include:

(1) the name and address of the intervenor or representative of the nonprofit organization the intervenor is representing;

(2) proof of the organization's nonprofit, tax-exempt status;

(3) the name and docket number of the proceeding for which compensation is requested;

(4) a list of actual annual revenues and expenses of the organization the intervenor is representing for the preceding year and projected revenues, revenue sources, and expenses for the current year;

(5) the organization's balance sheet for the preceding year and a current monthly balance sheet;

(6) an itemization of intervenor costs and the total compensation request; and

(7) a narrative explaining why additional organizational funds cannot be devoted to the intervention.

(g) Within 30 days after service of the request for compensation, a party may file a response, together with an affidavit of service, with the commission. A copy of the response must be served on the intervenor and all other parties to the proceeding.

(h) Within 15 days after the response is filed, the intervenor may file a reply with the commission. A copy of the reply and an affidavit of service must be served on all other parties to the proceeding.

(i) If additional costs are incurred as a result of additional proceedings following the commission's initial order, the intervenor may file an amended request within 30 days after the commission issues an amended order. Paragraphs (e) to (h) apply to an amended request.

(j) The commission must issue a decision on intervenor compensation within 60 days of a filing by an intervenor.

(k) A party may request reconsideration of the commission's compensation decision within 30 days of the decision.

(l) If the commission issues an order requiring payment of intervenor compensation, the utility that was the subject of the proceeding must pay the compensation to the intervenor, and file with the commission proof of payment, within 30 days after the later of (1) the expiration of the period within which a petition for reconsideration of the commission's compensation decision must be filed or (2) the date the commission issues an order following reconsideration of its order on intervenor compensation.

Sec. 19.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 216B.16, subdivision 15, is amended to read:

Subd. 15.

Low-income affordability programs.

(a) The commission may must consider ability to pay as a factor in setting utility rates and may establish affordability programs for low-income residential ratepayers in order to ensure affordable, reliable, and continuous service to low-income utility customers. By September 1, 2007, a public utility serving low-income residential ratepayers who use natural gas for heating must file an affordability program with the commission. For purposes of this subdivision, "low-income residential ratepayers" means ratepayers who receive energy assistance from the low-income home energy assistance program (LIHEAP).

(b) The purpose of the low-income programs is to Any affordability program the commission orders a utility to implement must:

(1) lower the percentage of income that participating low-income households devote to energy bills, to;

(2) increase participating customer payments, and to over time by increasing the frequency of payments;

(3) decrease or eliminate participating customer arrears;

(4) lower the utility costs associated with customer account collection activities; and

(5) coordinate the program with other available low-income bill payment assistance and conservation resources.

In ordering low-income affordability programs, the commission may require public utilities to file program evaluations, including the coordination of other available low-income bill payment and conservation resources and that measure the effect of the affordability program on:

(1) reducing the percentage of income that participating households devote to energy bills;

(2) service disconnections; and

(3) frequency of customer payment behavior payments, utility collection costs, arrearages, and bad debt.

(c) The commission must issue orders necessary to implement, administer, and evaluate affordability programs, and to allow a utility to recover program costs, including administrative costs, on a timely basis. The commission may not allow a utility to recover administrative costs, excluding start-up costs, in excess of five percent of total program costs, or program evaluation costs in excess of two percent of total program costs. The commission must permit deferred accounting, with carrying costs, for recovery of program costs incurred during the period between general rate cases.

(d) Public utilities may use information collected or created for the purpose of administering energy assistance to administer affordability programs.

Sec. 20.

[216B.1637] RECOVERY OF CERTAIN LIMITED UTILITY GREENHOUSE GAS INFRASTRUCTURE COSTS.

A public utility that owns a nuclear power plant and a public utility furnishing gas service may file for recovery of investments and expenses associated with the replacement of cast iron natural gas distribution and service lines owned by the utility and to replace breakers that contain sodium hexafluoride in order to reduce the risk of greenhouse gases being released into the atmosphere. Upon a finding that the projects are consistent with the public interest and do not impose excessive costs on customers, the commission shall provide timely recovery of the utility's investment and expenses on any approved projects through a rate adjustment mechanism similar to that provided for transmission projects under section 216B.16, subdivision 7b, paragraphs (b) to (d).

Sec. 21.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 216B.241, subdivision 6, is amended to read:

Subd. 6.

Renewable energy research.

(a) A public utility that owns a nuclear generation facility in the state shall spend five percent of the total amount that utility is required to spend under this section to support basic and applied research and demonstration activities at the University of Minnesota Initiative for Renewable Energy and the Environment for the development of renewable energy sources and technologies. The utility shall transfer the required amount to the University of Minnesota on or before July 1 of each year and that annual amount shall be deducted from the amount of money the utility is required to spend under this section. The University of Minnesota shall transfer at least ten percent of these funds to at least one rural campus or experiment station.

(b) Research Activities funded under this subdivision shall may include, but are not limited to:

(1) development of environmentally sound production, distribution, and use of energy, chemicals, and materials from renewable sources;

(2) processing and utilization of agricultural and forestry plant products and other bio-based, renewable sources as a substitute for fossil-fuel-based energy, chemicals, and materials using a variety of means including biocatalysis, biorefining, and fermentation;

(3) conversion of state wind resources to hydrogen for energy storage and transportation to areas of energy demand;

(4) improvements in scalable hydrogen fuel cell technologies; and

(5) production of hydrogen from bio-based, renewable sources; and sequestration of carbon.

(1) environmentally sound production of energy from a renewable energy source including biomass;

(2) environmentally sound production of hydrogen from biomass and any other renewable energy source for energy storage and energy utilization;

(3) development of energy conservation and efficient energy utilization technologies;

(4) energy storage technologies; and

(5) analysis of policy options to facilitate adoption of technologies that use or produce low-carbon renewable energy.

(c) Notwithstanding other law to the contrary, the utility may, but is not required to, spend more than two percent of its gross operating revenues from service provided in this state under this section or section 216B.2411.

(d) For the purposes of this subdivision:

(1) "renewable energy source: means hydro, wind, solar, biomass and geothermal energy, and microorganisms used as an energy source; and

(2) "biomass" means plant and animal material, agricultural and forest residues, mixed municipal solid waste, and sludge from wastewater treatment.

(e) This subdivision expires June 30, 2008 2010.

Sec. 22.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 216B.812, subdivision 2, is amended to read:

Subd. 2.

Pilot projects.

(a) In consultation with appropriate representatives from state agencies, local governments, universities, businesses, and other interested parties, the Department of Commerce shall report back to the legislature by November 1, 2005, and every two years thereafter, with a slate of proposed pilot projects that contribute to realizing Minnesota's hydrogen economy goal as set forth in section 216B.8109. The Department of Commerce must consider the following nonexclusive list of priorities in developing the proposed slate of pilot projects:

(1) demonstrate deploy "bridge" technologies such as hybrid-electric, off-road, and fleet vehicles running on hydrogen or fuels blended with hydrogen;

(2) develop lead to cost-competitive, on-site renewable hydrogen production technologies;

(3) demonstrate nonvehicle applications for hydrogen;

(4) improve the cost and efficiency of hydrogen from renewable energy sources; and

(5) improve the cost and efficiency of hydrogen production using direct solar energy without electricity generation as an intermediate step.

(b) For all demonstrations deployment projects that do not involve a demonstration component, individual system components of the technology must should, if feasible, meet commercial performance standards and systems modeling must be completed to predict commercial performance, risk, and synergies. In addition, the proposed pilots should meet as many of the following criteria as possible:

(1) advance energy security;

(2) capitalize on the state's native resources;

(3) result in economically competitive infrastructure being put in place;

(4) be located where it will link well with existing and related projects and be accessible to the public, now or in the future;

(5) demonstrate multiple, integrated aspects of renewable hydrogen infrastructure;

(6) include an explicit public education and awareness component;

(7) be scalable to respond to changing circumstances and market demands;

(8) draw on firms and expertise within the state where possible;

(9) include an assessment of its economic, environmental, and social impact; and

(10) serve other needs beyond hydrogen development.

Sec. 23.

[216B.813] MINNESOTA RENEWABLE HYDROGEN INITIATIVE.

Subdivision 1.

Road map.

The Department of Commerce shall coordinate and administer directly or by contract the Minnesota renewable hydrogen initiative. If the department decides to contract for its duties under this section, it must contract with a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization within the state to develop the road map. The initiative may be run as a public-private partnership representing business, academic, governmental, and nongovernmental organizations. The initiative must oversee the development and implementation of a renewable hydrogen road map, including appropriate technology deployments, that achieve the hydrogen goal of section 216B.013. The road map should be compatible with the United States Department of Energy's National Hydrogen Energy Roadmap and be based on an assessment of marketplace economics and the state's opportunities in hydrogen, fuel cells, and related technologies, so as to capitalize on strengths. The road map should establish a vision, goals, general timeline, strategies for working with industry, and measurable milestones for achieving the state's renewable hydrogen goal. The road map should describe how renewable hydrogen and fuel cells fit in Minnesota's overall energy system, and should help foster a consistent, predictable, and prudent investment environment. The department must report to the legislature on the progress in implementing the road map by November 1 of each odd-numbered year.

Subd. 2.

Grants.

(a) The commissioner of commerce shall operate a competitive grant program for projects to assist the state in attaining its renewable hydrogen energy goals. The commissioner of commerce shall assemble an advisory committee made up of industry, university, government, and nongovernment organizations to:

(1) help identify the most promising technology deployment projects for public investment;

(2) advise on the technical specifications for those projects; and

(3) make recommendations on project grants.

(b) The commissioner shall give preference to project concepts included in the department's most recent biennial report: Strategic Demonstration Projects to Accelerate the Commercialization of Renewable Hydrogen and Related Technologies in Minnesota. Projects eligible for funding must combine one or more of the hydrogen production options listed in the department's report with an end use that has significant commercial potential, preferably high visibility, and relies on fuel cells or related technologies. Each funded technology deployment must include an explicit education and awareness-raising component, be compatible with the renewable hydrogen deployment criteria defined in section 216B.812, and receive 50 percent of its total cost from nonstate sources. The 50 percent requirement does not apply for recipients that are public institutions.

Sec. 24.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 216C.051, subdivision 2, is amended to read:

Subd. 2.

Establishment.

(a) There is established a Legislative Electric Energy Task Force to study future electric energy sources and costs and to make recommendations for legislation for an environmentally and economically sustainable and advantageous electric energy supply.

(b) The task force consists of:

(1) ten members of the house of representatives including the chairs of the Environment and Natural Resources Committee and Regulated Industries Subcommittee the Energy Finance and Policy Division and eight members to be appointed by the speaker of the house, four of whom must be from the minority caucus; and

(2) ten members of the senate including the chairs of the Environment, Energy and Natural Resources Budget Division and Jobs, Energy, and Community Development Utilities, Technology and Communications committees and eight members to be appointed by the Subcommittee on Committees, four of whom must be from the minority caucus.

(c) The task force may employ staff, contract for consulting services, and may reimburse the expenses of persons requested to assist it in its duties other than state employees or employees of electric utilities. The director of the Legislative Coordinating Commission shall assist the task force in administrative matters. The task force shall elect cochairs, one member of the house and one member of the senate from among the committee and subcommittee chairs named to the committee. The task force members from the house shall elect the house cochair, and the task force members from the senate shall elect the senate cochair.

Sec. 25.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 216C.051, subdivision 9, is amended to read:

Subd. 9.

Expiration.

This section is repealed June 30, 2007 2010.

EFFECTIVE DATE.

This section is effective the day following final enactment.

Sec. 26.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 216C.052, is amended by adding a subdivision to read:

Subd. 8a.

Manitoba Hydro information.

By January 1, 2008, and each year thereafter, the task force shall request the Manitoba Hydro-Electric Board to provide the following information for each community that is a signatory to the Northern Flood Agreement, including South Indian Lake:

(1) median household income and number of residents employed full time and part time;

(2) the number of outstanding claims filed against Manitoba Hydro by individuals and communities and the number of claims settled by Manitoba Hydro; and

(3) the amount of shoreline damaged by flooding and erosion and the amount of shoreline restored and cleaned.

For the purposes of this subdivision, "Northern Flood Agreement" means the agreement entered into by the Northern Flood Committee, Incorporated, the Manitoba Hydro-Electric Board, the province of Manitoba, and the government of Canada on December 16, 1977.

Sec. 27.

[216C.385] CLEAN ENERGY RESOURCE TEAMS.

Subdivision 1.

Findings.

The legislature finds that community-based energy programs are an effective means of implementing improved energy practices including conservation, greater efficiency in energy use, and the production and use of renewable resources such as wind, solar, biomass, and biofuels. Further, community-based energy programs are found to be a public purpose for which public money may be spent.

Subd. 2.

Mission, organization, and membership.

The clean energy resource teams (CERT's) project is an innovative state, university, and nonprofit partnership that serves as a catalyst for community energy planning and projects. The mission of CERT's is to give citizens a voice in the energy planning process by connecting them with the necessary technical resources to identify and implement community-scale renewable energy and energy efficiency projects. In 2003, the Department of Commerce designated the CERT's project as a statewide collaborative venture and recognized six regional teams based on their geography: Central, Northeast, Northwest, Southeast, Southwest, and West-Central. Membership of CERT's may include but is not limited to representatives of utilities; federal, state, and local governments; small business; labor; senior citizens; academia; and other interested parties. The Department of Commerce may certify additional clean energy resource teams by regional geography, including teams in the Twin Cities metropolitan area.

Subd. 3.

Powers and duties.

In order to develop and implement community-based energy programs, a clean energy resource team may:

(1) analyze social and economic impacts caused by energy expenditures;

(2) analyze regional renewable and energy efficiency resources and opportunities;

(3) link community members and community energy projects to the knowledge and capabilities of the University of Minnesota, the State Energy Office, nonprofit organizations, and regional community members, among others;

(4) plan, set priorities for, provide technical assistance to, and catalyze local energy efficiency and renewable energy projects that help to meet state energy policy goals and maximize local economic development opportunities;

(5) provide a broad-based resource and communications network that links local, county, and regional energy efficiency and renewable energy project efforts around the state (both interregional and intraregional);

(6) seek, accept, and disburse grants and other aids from public or private sources for purposes authorized in this subdivision;

(7) provides a convening and networking function within CERT's regions to facilitate education, knowledge formation, and project replication; and

(8) exercise other powers and duties imposed on it by statute, charter, or ordinance.

Subd. 4.

Department assistance.

The commissioner, via the clean energy resource teams, may provide professional, technical, organizational, and financial assistance to regions and communities to develop and implement community energy programs and projects, within available resources.

Sec. 28.

[216C.39] RURAL WIND ENERGY DEVELOPMENT REVOLVING LOAN FUND.

Subdivision 1.

Establishment.

A rural wind energy development revolving loan fund is established as an account in the special revenue fund in the state treasury. The commissioner of finance shall credit to the account the amounts authorized under this section and appropriations and transfers to the account. Earnings, such as interest, dividends, and any other earnings arising from fund assets, must be credited to the account.

Subd. 2.

Purpose.

The rural wind energy development revolving loan fund is created to provide financial assistance, through partnership with local owners and communities, in developing community wind energy projects that meet the specifications of section 216B.1612, subdivision 2, paragraph (f).

Subd. 3.

Expenditures.

Money in the fund is appropriated to the commissioner of commerce, and may be used to make loans to qualifying owners of wind energy projects, as defined in section 216B.1612, subdivision 2, paragraph (f), to assist in funding wind studies and transmission interconnection studies. The loans must be structured for repayment within 30 days after the project begins commercial operations or two years from the date the loan is issued, whichever is sooner. The commissioner may pay reasonable and actual costs of administering the loan program, not to exceed interest earned on fund assets.

Subd. 4.

Limitations.

A loan may not be approved for an amount exceeding $100,000. This limit applies to all money loaned to a single project or single entity, whether paid to one or more qualifying owners and whether paid in one or more fiscal years.

Subd. 5.

Administration; eligible projects.

(a) Applications for a loan under this section must be made in a manner and on forms prescribed by the commissioner. Loans to eligible projects must be made in the order in which complete applications are received by the commissioner. Loan funds must be disbursed to an applicant within ten days of submission of a payment request by the applicant that demonstrates a payment due to the Midwest Independent System Operator. Interest payable on the loan amount may not exceed 1.5 percent per annum.

(b) A project is eligible for a loan under this program if:

(1) the project has completed an adequate interconnection feasibility study that indicates the project may be interconnected with system upgrades of less than ten percent of the estimated project costs;

(2) the project has a signed power purchase agreement with an electric utility or provides evidence that the project is under serious consideration for such an agreement by an electric utility;

(3) the ownership and structure of the project allows it to qualify as a community-based energy development (C-BED) project under section 216B.1612, and the developer commits to obtaining and maintaining C-BED status; and

(4) the commissioner has determined that sufficient funds are available to make a loan to the project.

Sec. 29.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 216C.41, subdivision 3, is amended to read:

Subd. 3.

Eligibility window.

Payments may be made under this section only for:

(a) electricity generated from:

(1) from a qualified hydroelectric facility that is operational and generating electricity before December 31, 2009;

(2) from a qualified wind energy conversion facility that is operational and generating electricity before January 1, 2008; or

(3) from a qualified on-farm biogas recovery facility from July 1, 2001, through December 31, 2017; and

(b) gas generated from a qualified on-farm biogas recovery facility from July 1, 2007, through December 31, 2017.

Sec. 30.

PETROLEUM VIOLATION ESCROW FUNDS.

(a) Petroleum violation escrow funds appropriated to the commissioner of commerce by Laws 1988, chapter 686, article 1, section 38, for state energy loan programs for schools, hospitals, and public buildings must be used for grants to kindergarten through grade 12 schools to develop energy conservation or renewable energy projects. A grant may not exceed $500,000. The commissioner must endeavor to award grants throughout the regions of the state. No more than one grant may be awarded in a county, unless an insufficient number of applications is received from schools located in other counties to exhaust available funds.

(b) The commissioner of commerce must petition the federal Department of Energy for a waiver from any federal regulation that limits the proportion of federal funds expended on state energy programs that may be spent on energy efficiency.

(c) For purposes of this subdivision, "renewable energy" means wind, solar, hydroelectric with a capacity of less than 60 megawatts, geothermal, hydrogen, fuel cells made from renewable resources, herbaceous crops, agricultural crops, agricultural waste, and aquatic plant matter.

EFFECTIVE DATE.

This section is effective the day after the commissioner of commerce receives the waiver described in paragraph (b).

Sec. 31.

UNIFORM CODES AND STANDARDS FOR HYDROGEN, FUEL CELLS, AND RELATED TECHNOLOGIES; RECOMMENDATIONS AND REPORT.

(a) The commissioner of labor and industry, in consultation with the Department of Commerce and other relevant public and private interests, shall develop recommendations regarding the adoption of uniform codes and standards for hydrogen infrastructure, fuel cells, and related technologies, and report those recommendations to the legislature by December 31, 2008.

(b) The goal of the recommendations is to have all regulatory jurisdictions in the state have the same safety standards with regard to the production, storage, transportation, distribution, and use of hydrogen, fuel cells, and related technologies. The commissioner's recommendations must, without limitation, include:

(1) codes and standards that already exist for hydrogen, fuel cells, and related technologies, and how the state should formalize their use;

(2) codes and standards still under development by various official standard-making bodies;

(3) gaps between existing codes and standards, those under development, and those that may still be needed but are not yet being developed;

(4) the need for, and estimated cost of, additional education and training for emergency management and code officials;

(5) any changes needed to environmental and other permitting processes to accommodate the commercialization of hydrogen, fuel cells, and related technologies; and

(6) recommendations on appropriate codes and standards for educational and research institutions.

Sec. 32.

HYDROGEN REFUELING STATION GRANTS.

In addition to the purposes specified in Laws 2005, chapter 97, article 13, section 4, for which the commissioner of commerce may make grants, the commissioner may make grants under that law for the purpose of developing, deploying, and encouraging commercially promising renewable hydrogen production systems and hydrogen end uses in partnership with industry. The authority of the commissioner to make grants and assessments under Laws 2005, chapter 97, article 13, section 4, continues until the authorized grants and assessments are made.

Sec. 33.

OFF-SITE RENEWABLE DISTRIBUTED GENERATION.

The commissioner of commerce shall convene a broad group of interested stakeholders to evaluate the feasibility and potential for the interconnection and parallel operation of off-site renewable distributed generation in a manner consistent with Minnesota Statutes, sections 216B.37 to 216B.43, and shall issue recommendations to the chairs of the house of representatives and senate committees with jurisdiction over energy issues by February 1, 2008.

Sec. 34.

DEFINITIONS.

For purposes of sections 34 to 36, the following definitions apply:

(1) "terrestrial carbon sequestration" means the long-term storage of carbon in soil and vegetation to prevent its collection in the atmosphere as carbon dioxide; and

(2) "geologic carbon sequestration" means injecting carbon dioxide into underground geologic formations where it can be stored for long periods of time to prevent its escape to the atmosphere.

Sec. 35.

TERRESTRIAL CARBON SEQUESTRATION ACTIVITIES.

Subdivision 1.

Study; scope.

The Board of Regents of the University of Minnesota is requested to conduct a study assessing the potential capacity for carbon sequestration in Minnesota's terrestrial systems. The study must:

(1) conduct a statewide inventory and construct a database of lands across several land types, such as forests, agricultural lands, peatlands, and wetlands, that have the potential to sequester significant quantities of carbon and of lands that currently contain large stocks of carbon that are at risk of being emitted to the atmosphere as a result of changes in land use and climate;

(2) quantify the ability of various land use practices, such as the growth of different species of crops, grasses, and trees, to sequester carbon and their impacts on other ecological services of value, including air and water quality, biodiversity, and wildlife habitat;

(3) identify a network of benchmark monitoring sites to measure the impact of long-term, large-scale factors, such as changes in climate, carbon dioxide levels, and land use, on the terrestrial carbon sequestration capacity of various land types, to improve understanding of carbon-terrestrial interactions and dynamics;

(4) identify long-term demonstration projects to measure the impact of deliberate sequestration practices, including the establishment of biofuel production systems, on forest, agricultural, wetland, and prairie ecosystems; and

(5) evaluate current state policies and programs that affect the levels of terrestrial sequestration on public and private lands and identify gaps and recommend policy changes to increase sequestration rates.

Subd. 2.

Coordination of terrestrial carbon sequestration activities.

Planning and implementation of the study described in subdivision 1 will be coordinated by the Minnesota Terrestrial Carbon Sequestration Initiative, a task force consisting of representatives from the University of Minnesota, the Department of Agriculture, the Board of Water and Soil Resources, the Department of Commerce, the Department of Natural Resources, and the Pollution Control Agency and agricultural, forestry, conservation, and business stakeholders.

Subd. 3.

Contracting.

The University of Minnesota may contract with another party to perform any of the tasks listed in subdivision 1.

Subd. 4.

Report.

The commissioner of natural resources must submit a report with the results of the study to the senate and house committees with jurisdiction over environmental and energy policies no later than February 1, 2008.

Sec. 36.

GEOLOGIC CARBON SEQUESTRATION ASSESSMENT.

Subdivision 1.

Study; scope.

(a) The Minnesota Geological Survey shall conduct a study assessing the potential capacity for geologic carbon sequestration in the Midcontinent Rift system in Minnesota. The study must assess the potential of porous and permeable sandstone layers deeper than one kilometer below the surface that are capped by less permeable shale and must identify potential risks to carbon storage, such as areas of low permeability in injection zones, low storage capacity, and potential seal failure. The study must identify the most promising formations and geographic areas for physical analysis of carbon sequestration potential. The study must review geologic maps, published reports and surveys, and any relevant unpublished raw data with respect to attributes that are pertinent for the long-term sequestration of carbon in geologic formations, in particular, those that bear on formation injectivity, capacity, and seal effectiveness. The study must examine the following characteristics of key sedimentary units within the Midcontinent Rift system in Minnesota:

(1) likely depth, temperature, and pressure;

(2) physical properties, including the ability to contain and transmit fluids;

(3) the type of rocks present;

(4) structure and geometry, including folds and faults; and

(5) hydrogeology, including water chemistry and water flow.

(b) The commissioner of natural resources, in consultation with the Minnesota Geological Survey, shall contract for a study to estimate the properties of the Midcontinent Rift system in Minnesota, as described in paragraph (a), clauses (1) to (5), through the use of computer models developed for similar geologic formations located outside of Minnesota which have been studied in greater detail.

Subd. 2.

Consultation.

The Minnesota Geological Survey shall consult with the Minnesota Mineral Coordinating Committee, established in Minnesota Statutes, section 93.0015, in planning and implementing the study design.

Subd. 3.

Report.

The commissioner of natural resources must submit a report with the results of the study to the senate and house committees with jurisdiction over environmental and energy policies no later than February 1, 2008.

Sec. 37.

ST. PAUL PORT AUTHORITY.

Notwithstanding Minnesota Statutes, section 465.717, the St. Paul Port Authority may create a not-for-profit corporation for purposes of owning or operating, or both, a steam and electricity producing facility to be located in St. Paul that uses primarily fuel from an eligible energy technology as defined in Minnesota Statutes, section 216B.1691, subdivision 1, except that it does not include mixed municipal solid waste as an eligible energy technology. Steam produced by the facility may be used by a customer in a paper recycling operation. Nothing in this section authorizes or prohibits the retail sale of energy produced by the facility to other retail customers.

Sec. 38.

BIOFUEL PERMITTING REPORT.

By January 15, 2008, the Pollution Control Agency, the commissioner of natural resources, and the Environmental Quality Board shall report to the house of representatives and senate committees and divisions with jurisdiction over agriculture and environment policy and budget on the process to issue permits for biofuel production facilities. The report shall include:

(1) information on the timing of the permits and measures taken to improve the timing of the permitting process;

(2) recommended changes to statutes, rules, procedures, or fees to improve the biofuel facility permitting process and reduce the groundwater needed for production; and

(3) other information or analysis that may be helpful in understanding or improving the biofuel production facility permitting process.

EFFECTIVE DATE.

This section is effective the day following final enactment.

Sec. 39.

WINONA COUNTY; ELECTRIC POWER PLANT.

The county of Winona may own, construct, acquire, purchase, issue bonds and certificates of indebtedness for, maintain, and operate a wind energy conversion system, or a portion of a wind energy conversion system, within its corporate limits, and may sell the output from that facility at wholesale on such terms and conditions as the county board deems is in the best interests of the public. With respect to any wind energy conversion system, or any portion of a wind energy conversion system, the county may exercise the powers granted to a municipal power agency and to a city under Minnesota Statutes, sections 453.52, subdivisions 1, 6, 7, and 9 to 13; 453.54, subdivisions 1, 2, 4 to 6, 10, 11, 14, 15, and 17 to 21; 453.55; 453.57; 453.58, subdivisions 2, 3, and 4; 453.59; 453.60; 453.61; and 453.62, except that output from that wind energy conversion system may not be sold or distributed at retail or provided for end use by the county. Minnesota Statutes, section 453.58, subdivision 3, does not give the county the authority to enter into contracts with a municipal power agency for the purchase, sale, exchange, or transmission of electric energy and other services.

EFFECTIVE DATE.

This section is effective the day after the governing body of the county of Winona and its chief clerical officer comply with Minnesota Statutes, section 645.021, subdivisions 2 and 3.

Sec. 40.

APPLICATION OF RULES.

Minnesota Rules, parts 7831.0100; 7831.0200; 7831.0300; 7831.0400; 7831.0500; 7831.0600; 7831.0700; and 7831.0800, do not apply to a general rate case for a gas or electric utility held before the commission. The Public Utilities Commission shall timely adopt rules to conform with this section and Minnesota Statutes, section 216B.16, subdivision 10, as amended by this act, under the exempt rule procedures of Minnesota Statutes, section 14.388, subdivision 1, clause (3).

Sec. 41.

REVISOR'S INSTRUCTION.

The revisor of statutes must change the reference from "216B.095" to "216B.096" wherever found in Minnesota Rules, chapter 7820.

Sec. 42.

REPEALER.

(a) Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 216B.095, is repealed.

(b) Minnesota Rules, parts 7820.1500; 7820.1600; 7820.1700; 7820.1750; 7820.1800; 7820.1900; 7820.2000; 7820.2100; 7820.2150; 7820.2200; and 7820.2300, are repealed.

Sec. 43.

EFFECTIVE DATE.

Sections 13, 41, and 42 are effective September 1, 2008.

ARTICLE 3

COMMERCE

Section 1.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 13.712, is amended by adding a subdivision to read:

Subd. 3.

Vehicle protection product warrantors.

Financial information provided to the commissioner of commerce by vehicle protection product warrantors is classified under section 59C.05, subdivision 3.

EFFECTIVE DATE.

This section is effective January 1, 2008.

Sec. 2.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 45.011, subdivision 1, is amended to read:

Subdivision 1.

Scope.

As used in chapters 45 to 83, 155A, 332, 332A, 345, and 359, and sections 325D.30 to 325D.42, 326.83 to 326.991, and 386.61 to 386.78, unless the context indicates otherwise, the terms defined in this section have the meanings given them.

EFFECTIVE DATE.

This section is effective January 1, 2008.

Sec. 3.

[45.24] LICENSE TECHNOLOGY FEES.

(a) The commissioner may establish and maintain an electronic licensing database system for license origination, renewal, and tracking the completion of continuing education requirements by individual licensees who have continuing education requirements, and other related purposes.

(b) The commissioner shall pay for the cost of operating and maintaining the electronic database system described in paragraph (a) through a technology surcharge imposed upon the fee for license origination and renewal, for individual licenses that require continuing education.

(c) The surcharge permitted under paragraph (b) shall be up to $40 for each two-year licensing period, except as otherwise provided in paragraph (f), and shall be payable at the time of license origination and renewal.

(d) The Commerce Department technology account is hereby created as an account in the special revenue fund.

(e) The commissioner shall deposit the surcharge permitted under this section in the account created in paragraph (d), and funds in the account are appropriated to the commissioner in the amounts needed for purposes of this section.

(f) The commissioner shall temporarily reduce or suspend the surcharge as necessary if the balance in the account created in paragraph (d) exceeds $2,000,000 as of the end of any calendar year and shall increase or decrease the surcharge as necessary to keep the fund balance at an adequate level but not in excess of $2,000,000.

EFFECTIVE DATE.

This section is effective the day following final enactment.

Sec. 4.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 46.04, subdivision 1, is amended to read:

Subdivision 1.

General.

The commissioner of commerce, referred to in chapters 46 to 59A, and sections 332.12 to 332.29 chapter 332A, as the commissioner, is vested with all the powers, authority, and privileges which, prior to the enactment of Laws 1909, chapter 201, were conferred by law upon the public examiner, and shall take over all duties in relation to state banks, savings banks, trust companies, savings associations, and other financial institutions within the state which, prior to the enactment of chapter 201, were imposed upon the public examiner. The commissioner of commerce shall exercise a constant supervision, either personally or through the examiners herein provided for, over the books and affairs of all state banks, savings banks, trust companies, savings associations, credit unions, industrial loan and thrift companies, and other financial institutions doing business within this state; and shall, through examiners, examine each financial institution at least once every 24 calendar months. In satisfying this examination requirement, the commissioner may accept reports of examination prepared by a federal agency having comparable supervisory powers and examination procedures. With the exception of industrial loan and thrift companies which do not have deposit liabilities and licensed regulated lenders, it shall be the principal purpose of these examinations to inspect and verify the assets and liabilities of each and so far investigate the character and value of the assets of each institution as to determine with reasonable certainty that the values are correctly carried on its books. Assets and liabilities shall be verified in accordance with methods of procedure which the commissioner may determine to be adequate to carry out the intentions of this section. It shall be the further purpose of these examinations to assess the adequacy of capital protection and the capacity of the institution to meet usual and reasonably anticipated deposit withdrawals and other cash commitments without resorting to excessive borrowing or sale of assets at a significant loss, and to investigate each institution's compliance with applicable laws and rules. Based on the examination findings, the commissioner shall make a determination as to whether the institution is being operated in a safe and sound manner. None of the above provisions limits the commissioner in making additional examinations as deemed necessary or advisable. The commissioner shall investigate the methods of operation and conduct of these institutions and their systems of accounting, to ascertain whether these methods and systems are in accordance with law and sound banking principles. The commissioner may make requirements as to records as deemed necessary to facilitate the carrying out of the commissioner's duties and to properly protect the public interest. The commissioner may examine, or cause to be examined by these examiners, on oath, any officer, director, trustee, owner, agent, clerk, customer, or depositor of any financial institution touching the affairs and business thereof, and may issue, or cause to be issued by the examiners, subpoenas, and administer, or cause to be administered by the examiners, oaths. In case of any refusal to obey any subpoena issued under the commissioner's direction, the refusal may at once be reported to the district court of the district in which the bank or other financial institution is located, and this court shall enforce obedience to these subpoenas in the manner provided by law for enforcing obedience to subpoenas of the court. In all matters relating to official duties, the commissioner of commerce has the power possessed by courts of law to issue subpoenas and cause them to be served and enforced, and all officers, directors, trustees, and employees of state banks, savings banks, trust companies, savings associations, and other financial institutions within the state, and all persons having dealings with or knowledge of the affairs or methods of these institutions, shall afford reasonable facilities for these examinations, make returns and reports to the commissioner of commerce as the commissioner may require; attend and answer, under oath, the commissioner's lawful inquiries; produce and exhibit any books, accounts, documents, and property as the commissioner may desire to inspect, and in all things aid the commissioner in the performance of duties.

EFFECTIVE DATE.

This section is effective January 1, 2008.

Sec. 5.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 46.05, is amended to read:

46.05 SUPERVISION OVER FINANCIAL INSTITUTIONS.

Every state bank, savings bank, trust company, savings association, debt management services provider, and other financial institutions shall be at all times under the supervision and subject to the control of the commissioner of commerce. If, and whenever in the performance of duties, the commissioner finds it necessary to make a special investigation of any financial institution under the commissioner's supervision, and other than a complete examination, the commissioner shall make a charge therefor to include only the necessary costs thereof. Such a fee shall be payable to the commissioner on the commissioner's making a request for payment.

EFFECTIVE DATE.

This section is effective January 1, 2008.

Sec. 6.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 46.131, subdivision 2, is amended to read:

Subd. 2.

Assessment authority.

Each bank, trust company, savings bank, savings association, regulated lender, industrial loan and thrift company, credit union, motor vehicle sales finance company, debt prorating agency management services provider and insurance premium finance company organized under the laws of this state or required to be administered by the commissioner of commerce shall pay into the state treasury its proportionate share of the cost of maintaining the Department of Commerce.

EFFECTIVE DATE.

This section is effective January 1, 2008.

Sec. 7.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 47.19, is amended to read:

47.19 CORPORATION MAY BE MEMBER OR STOCKHOLDER OF FEDERAL AGENCY.

Any corporation is hereby empowered and authorized to become a member of, or stockholder in, any such agency, and to that end to purchase stock in, or securities of, or deposit money with, such agency and/or to comply with any other conditions of membership or credit; to borrow money from such agency upon such rates of interest, not exceeding the contract rate of interest in this state, and upon such terms and conditions as may be agreed upon by such corporation and such agency, for the purpose of making loans, paying withdrawals, paying maturities, paying debts, and for any other purpose not inconsistent with the objects of the corporation; provided, that the aggregate amount of the indebtedness, so incurred by such corporation, which shall be outstanding at any time shall not exceed 25 35 percent of the then total assets of the corporation; to assign, pledge and hypothecate its bonds, mortgages or other assets; and, in case of savings associations, to repledge with such agency the shares of stock in such association which any owner thereof may have pledged as collateral security, without obtaining the consent thereunto of such owner, as security for the repayment of the indebtedness so created by such corporation and as evidenced by its note or other evidence of indebtedness given for such borrowed money; and to do any and all things which shall or may be necessary or convenient in order to comply with and to obtain the benefits of the provisions of any act of Congress creating such agency, or any amendments thereto.

Sec. 8.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 47.59, subdivision 6, is amended to read:

Subd. 6.

Additional charges.

(a) For purposes of this subdivision, "financial institution" includes a person described in subdivision 4, paragraph (a). In addition to the finance charges permitted by this section, a financial institution may contract for and receive the following additional charges that may be included in the principal amount of the loan or credit sale unpaid balances:

(1) official fees and taxes;

(2) charges for insurance as described in paragraph (b);

(3) with respect to a loan or credit sale contract secured by real estate, the following "closing costs," if they are bona fide, reasonable in amount, and not for the purpose of circumvention or evasion of this section:

(i) fees or premiums for title examination, abstract of title, title insurance, surveys, or similar purposes;

(ii) fees for preparation of a deed, mortgage, settlement statement, or other documents, if not paid to the financial institution;

(iii) escrows for future payments of taxes, including assessments for improvements, insurance, and water, sewer, and land rents;

(iv) fees for notarizing deeds and other documents;

(v) appraisal and credit report fees; and

(vi) fees for determining whether any portion of the property is located in a flood zone and fees for ongoing monitoring of the property to determine changes, if any, in flood zone status;

(4) a delinquency charge on a payment, including the minimum payment due in connection with open-end credit, not paid in full on or before the tenth day after its due date in an amount not to exceed five percent of the amount of the payment or $5.20, whichever is greater;

(5) for a returned check or returned automatic payment withdrawal request, an amount not in excess of the service charge limitation in section 604.113, except that, on a loan transaction that is a consumer small loan as defined in section 47.60, subdivision 1, paragraph (a), in which cash is advanced in exchange for a personal check, the civil penalty provisions of section 604.113, subdivision 2, paragraph (b), may not be demanded or assessed against the borrower; and

(6) charges for other benefits, including insurance, conferred on the borrower that are of a type that is not for credit.

(b) An additional charge may be made for insurance written in connection with the loan or credit sale contract, which may be included in the principal amount of the loan or credit sale unpaid balances:

(1) with respect to insurance against loss of or damage to property, or against liability arising out of the ownership or use of property, if the financial institution furnishes a clear, conspicuous, and specific statement in writing to the borrower setting forth the cost of the insurance if obtained from or through the financial institution and stating that the borrower may choose the person through whom the insurance is to be obtained;

(2) with respect to credit insurance or mortgage insurance providing life, accident, health, or unemployment coverage, if the insurance coverage is not required by the financial institution, and this fact is clearly and conspicuously disclosed in writing to the borrower, and the borrower gives specific, dated, and separately signed affirmative written indication of the borrower's desire to do so after written disclosure to the borrower of the cost of the insurance; and

(3) with respect to the vendor's single interest insurance, but only (i) to the extent that the insurer has no right of subrogation against the borrower; and (ii) to the extent that the insurance does not duplicate the coverage of other insurance under which loss is payable to the financial institution as its interest may appear, against loss of or damage to property for which a separate charge is made to the borrower according to clause (1); and (iii) if a clear, conspicuous, and specific statement in writing is furnished by the financial institution to the borrower setting forth the cost of the insurance if obtained from or through the financial institution and stating that the borrower may choose the person through whom the insurance is to be obtained.

(c) In addition to the finance charges and other additional charges permitted by this section, a financial institution may contract for and receive the following additional charges in connection with open-end credit, which may be included in the principal amount of the loan or balance upon which the finance charge is computed:

(1) annual charges, not to exceed $50 per annum, payable in advance, for the privilege of opening and maintaining open-end credit;

(2) charges for the use of an automated teller machine;

(3) charges for any monthly or other periodic payment period in which the borrower has exceeded or, except for the financial institution's dishonor would have exceeded, the maximum approved credit limit, in an amount not in excess of the service charge permitted in section 604.113;

(4) charges for obtaining a cash advance in an amount not to exceed the service charge permitted in section 604.113; and

(5) charges for check and draft copies and for the replacement of lost or stolen credit cards.

(d) In addition to the finance charges and other additional charges permitted by this section, a financial institution may contract for and receive a onetime loan administrative fee not exceeding $25 in connection with closed-end credit, which may be included in the principal balance upon which the finance charge is computed. This paragraph applies only to closed-end credit in an original principal amount of $4,320 or less. The determination of an original principal amount must exclude the administrative fee contracted for and received according to this paragraph.

Sec. 9.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 47.60, subdivision 2, is amended to read:

Subd. 2.

Authorization, terms, conditions, and prohibitions.

(a) In lieu of the interest, finance charges, or fees in any other law, a consumer small loan lender may charge the following:

(1) on any amount up to and including $50, a charge of $5.50 may be added;

(2) on amounts in excess of $50, but not more than $100, a charge may be added equal to ten percent of the loan proceeds plus a $5 administrative fee;

(3) on amounts in excess of $100, but not more than $250, a charge may be added equal to seven percent of the loan proceeds with a minimum of $10 plus a $5 administrative fee;

(4) for amounts in excess of $250 and not greater than the maximum in subdivision 1, paragraph (a), a charge may be added equal to six percent of the loan proceeds with a minimum of $17.50 plus a $5 administrative fee.

(b) The term of a loan made under this section shall be for no more than 30 calendar days.

(c) After maturity, the contract rate must not exceed 2.75 percent per month of the remaining loan proceeds after the maturity date calculated at a rate of 1/30 of the monthly rate in the contract for each calendar day the balance is outstanding.

(d) No insurance charges or other charges must be permitted to be charged, collected, or imposed on a consumer small loan except as authorized in this section.

(e) On a loan transaction in which cash is advanced in exchange for a personal check, a return check charge may be charged as authorized by section 604.113, subdivision 2, paragraph (a). The civil penalty provisions of section 604.113, subdivision 2, paragraph (b), may not be demanded or assessed against the borrower.

(f) A loan made under this section must not be repaid by the proceeds of another loan made under this section by the same lender or related interest. The proceeds from a loan made under this section must not be applied to another loan from the same lender or related interest. No loan to a single borrower made pursuant to this section shall be split or divided and no single borrower shall have outstanding more than one loan with the result of collecting a higher charge than permitted by this section or in an aggregate amount of principal exceed at any one time the maximum of $350.

Sec. 10.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 47.62, subdivision 1, is amended to read:

Subdivision 1.

General authority.

Any person may establish and maintain one or more electronic financial terminals. Any financial institution may provide for its customers the use of an electronic financial terminal by entering into an agreement with any person who has established and maintains one or more electronic financial terminals if that person authorizes use of the electronic financial terminal to all financial institutions on a nondiscriminatory basis pursuant to section 47.64. Electronic financial terminals to be established and maintained in this state by financial institutions located in states other than Minnesota must file a notification to the commissioner as required in this section. The notification may be in the form lawfully required by the state regulator responsible for the examination and supervision of that financial institution. If there is no such requirement, then notification must be in the form required by this section for Minnesota financial institutions.

Sec. 11.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 47.75, subdivision 1, is amended to read:

Subdivision 1.

Retirement, health savings, and medical savings accounts.

(a) A commercial bank, savings bank, savings association, credit union, or industrial loan and thrift company may act as trustee or custodian:

(1) under the Federal Self-Employed Individual Tax Retirement Act of 1962, as amended;

(2) of a medical savings account under the Federal Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996, as amended;

(3) of a health savings account under the Medicare Prescription Drug, Improvement, and Modernization Act of 2003, as amended; and

(4) under the Federal Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974, as amended.

(b) The trustee or custodian may accept the trust funds if the funds are invested only in savings accounts or time deposits in the commercial bank, savings bank, savings association, credit union, or industrial loan and thrift company, except that health savings accounts may also be invested in transaction accounts. Health savings accounts invested in transaction accounts shall not be subject to the restrictions in section 48.512, subdivision 3. All funds held in the fiduciary capacity may be commingled by the financial institution in the conduct of its business, but individual records shall be maintained by the fiduciary for each participant and shall show in detail all transactions engaged under authority of this subdivision.

EFFECTIVE DATE.

This section is effective the day following final enactment.

Sec. 12.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 48.15, subdivision 4, is amended to read:

Subd. 4.

Retirement, health savings, and medical savings accounts.

(a) A state bank may act as trustee or custodian:

(1) of a self-employed retirement plan under the Federal Self-Employed Individual Tax Retirement Act of 1962, as amended;

(2) of a medical savings account under the Federal Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996, as amended;

(3) of a health savings account under the Medicare Prescription Drug, Improvement, and Modernization Act of 2003, as amended; and

(4) of an individual retirement account under the Federal Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974, as amended, if the bank's duties as trustee or custodian are essentially ministerial or custodial in nature and the funds are invested only (i) in the bank's own savings or time deposits, except that health savings accounts may also be invested in transaction accounts. Health savings accounts invested in transaction accounts shall not be subject to the restrictions in section 48.512, subdivision 3; or (ii) in any other assets at the direction of the customer if the bank does not exercise any investment discretion, invest the funds in collective investment funds administered by it, or provide any investment advice with respect to those account assets.

(b) Affiliated discount brokers may be utilized by the bank acting as trustee or custodian for self-directed IRAs, if specifically authorized and directed in appropriate documents. The relationship between the affiliated broker and the bank must be fully disclosed. Brokerage commissions to be charged to the IRA by the affiliated broker should be accurately disclosed. Provisions should be made for disclosure of any changes in commission rates prior to their becoming effective. The affiliated broker may not provide investment advice to the customer.

(c) All funds held in the fiduciary capacity may be commingled by the financial institution in the conduct of its business, but individual records shall be maintained by the fiduciary for each participant and shall show in detail all transactions engaged under authority of this subdivision.

(d) The authority granted by this section is in addition to, and not limited by, section 47.75.

EFFECTIVE DATE.

This section is effective the day following final enactment.

Sec. 13.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 58.04, subdivision 1, is amended to read:

Subdivision 1.

Residential mortgage originator licensing requirements.

(a) Beginning August 1, 1999, No person shall act as a residential mortgage originator, or make residential mortgage loans without first obtaining a license from the commissioner according to the licensing procedures provided in this chapter.

(b) A licensee must be either a partnership, limited liability partnership, association, limited liability company, corporation, or other form of business organization, and must have and maintain at all times one of the following: approval as a mortgagee by either the federal Department of Housing and Urban Development or the Federal National Mortgage Association; a minimum net worth, net of intangibles, of at least $250,000; or a surety bond or irrevocable letter of credit in the amount of $50,000. Net worth, net of intangibles, must be calculated in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles.

(c) The following persons are exempt from the residential mortgage originator licensing requirements:

(1) an employee of one mortgage originator licensee or one person holding a certificate of exemption;

(2) a person licensed as a real estate broker under chapter 82 who is not licensed to another real estate broker;

(3) an individual real estate licensee who is licensed to a real estate broker as described in clause (2) if:

(i) the individual licensee acts only under the name, authority, and supervision of the broker to whom the licensee is licensed;

(ii) the broker to whom the licensee is licensed obtains a certificate of exemption according to section 58.05, subdivision 2;

(iii) the broker does not collect an advance fee for its residential mortgage-related activities; and

(iv) the residential mortgage origination activities are incidental to the real estate licensee's primary activities as a real estate broker or salesperson;

(4) an individual licensed as a property/casualty or life/health insurance agent under chapter 60K if:

(i) the insurance agent acts on behalf of only one residential mortgage originator, which is in compliance with chapter 58;

(ii) the insurance agent has entered into a written contract with the mortgage originator under the terms of which the mortgage originator agrees to accept responsibility for the insurance agent's residential mortgage-related activities;

(iii) the insurance agent obtains a certificate of exemption under section 58.05, subdivision 2; and

(iv) the insurance agent does not collect an advance fee for the insurance agent's residential mortgage-related activities;

(5) (1) a person who is not in the business of making residential mortgage loans and who makes no more than three such loans, with its own funds, during any 12-month period;

(6) (2) a financial institution as defined in section 58.02, subdivision 10;

(7) (3) an agency of the federal government, or of a state or municipal government;

(8) (4) an employee or employer pension plan making loans only to its participants;

(9) (5) a person acting in a fiduciary capacity, such as a trustee or receiver, as a result of a specific order issued by a court of competent jurisdiction; or

(10) (6) a person exempted by order of the commissioner.

Sec. 14.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 58.05, is amended to read:

58.05 EXEMPTIONS FROM LICENSE.

Subdivision 1.

Exempt person.

An exempt person as defined by section 58.04, subdivision 1, paragraph (b) (c), and subdivision 2, paragraph (b), is exempt from the licensing requirements of this chapter, but is subject to all other provisions of this chapter.

Subd. 3.

Certificate of exemption.

A person must obtain a certificate of exemption from the commissioner to qualify as an exempt person under section 58.04, subdivision 1, paragraph (b) (c), as a real estate broker under clause (2), an insurance agent under clause (4), a financial institution under clause (6) (2), or by order of the commissioner under clause (10) (6); or under section 58.04, subdivision 2, paragraph (b), as a financial institution under clause (4) (3), or by order of the commissioner under clause (8) (7).

Sec. 15.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 58.06, subdivision 2, is amended to read:

Subd. 2.

Application contents.

(a) The application must contain the name and complete business address or addresses of the license applicant. If The license applicant is must be a partnership, limited liability partnership, association, limited liability company, corporation, or other form of business organization, and the application must contain the names and complete business addresses of each partner, member, director, and principal officer. The application must also include a description of the activities of the license applicant, in the detail and for the periods the commissioner may require.

(b) An applicant must submit one of the following:

(1) evidence which shows, to the commissioner's satisfaction, that either the federal Department of Housing and Urban Development or the Federal National Mortgage Association has approved the applicant as a mortgagee;

(2) a surety bond or irrevocable letter of credit in the amount of not less than $50,000 in a form approved by the commissioner, issued by an insurance company or bank authorized to do so in this state. The bond or irrevocable letter of credit must be available for the recovery of expenses, fines, and fees levied by the commissioner under this chapter and for losses incurred by borrowers. The bond or letter of credit must be submitted with the license application, and evidence of continued coverage must be submitted with each renewal. Any change in the bond or letter of credit must be submitted for approval by the commissioner within ten days of its execution; or

(3) a copy of the applicant's most recent audited financial statement, including balance sheet, statement of income or loss, statements of changes in shareholder equity, and statement of changes in financial position. Financial statements must be as of a date within 12 months of the date of application.

(c) The application must also include all of the following:

(a) (1) an affirmation under oath that the applicant:

(1) will maintain competent staff and adequate staffing levels, through direct employees or otherwise, to meet the requirements of this chapter; (i) is in compliance with the requirements of section 58.125;

(ii) will maintain a perpetual roster of individuals employed as residential mortgage originators, including employees and independent contractors, which includes the date that mandatory initial education was completed. In addition, the roster must be made available to the commissioner on demand, within three business days of the commissioner's request;

(2) (iii) will advise the commissioner of any material changes to the information submitted in the most recent application within ten days of the change;

(3) (iv) will advise the commissioner in writing immediately of any bankruptcy petitions filed against or by the applicant or licensee;

(4) is financially solvent; (v) will maintain at all times either a net worth, net of intangibles, of at least $250,000 or a surety bond or irrevocable letter of credit in the amount of at least $50,000;

(5) (vi) complies with federal and state tax laws; and

(6) (vii) complies with sections 345.31 to 345.60, the Minnesota unclaimed property law; and

(7) is, or that a person in control of the license applicant is, at least 18 years of age;

(b) (2) information as to the mortgage lending, servicing, or brokering experience of the applicant and persons in control of the applicant;

(c) (3) information as to criminal convictions, excluding traffic violations, of persons in control of the license applicant;

(d) (4) whether a court of competent jurisdiction has found that the applicant or persons in control of the applicant have engaged in conduct evidencing gross negligence, fraud, misrepresentation, or deceit in performing an act for which a license is required under this chapter;

(e) (5) whether the applicant or persons in control of the applicant have been the subject of: an order of suspension or revocation, cease and desist order, or injunctive order, or order barring involvement in an industry or profession issued by this or another state or federal regulatory agency or by the Secretary of Housing and Urban Development within the ten-year period immediately preceding submission of the application; and

(f) (6) other information required by the commissioner.

Sec. 16.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 58.06, is amended by adding a subdivision to read:

Subd. 3.

Waiver.

The commissioner may, for good cause shown, waive any requirement of this section with respect to an initial license application or to permit a license applicant to submit substituted information in its license application in lieu of the information required by this section.

Sec. 17.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 58.08, subdivision 3, is amended to read:

Subd. 3.

Exemption.

Subdivisions 1 and Subdivision 2 do does not apply to mortgage originators or mortgage servicers who are approved as seller/servicers by the Federal National Mortgage Association or the Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corporation.

Sec. 18.

Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 58.10, subdivision 1, is amended to read:

Subdivision 1.

Amounts.

The following fees must be paid to the commissioner:

(1) for an initial residential mortgage originator license, $850 $2,125, $50 of which is credited to the consumer education account in the special revenue fund;

(2) for a renewal license, $450 $1,125, $50 of which is credited to the consumer education account in the special revenue fund;

(3) for an initial residential mortgage servicer's license, $1,000;

(4) for a renewal license, $500; and

(5) for a certificate of exemption, $100.

Sec. 19.

[58.115] EXAMINATIONS.

The commissioner has under this chapter the same powers with respect to examinations that the commissioner has under section 46.04, including the authority to charge for the direct costs of the examination, including travel and per diem expenses.

Sec. 20.

[58.126] EDUCATION REQUIREMENT.

No individual shall engage in residential mortgage origination or make residential mortgage loans, whether as an employee or independent contractor, before the completion of 15 hours of educational training which has been approved by the commissioner, and covering state and federal laws concerning residential mortgage lending.

EFFECTIVE DATE.

This section is effective March 1, 2008.

Sec. 21.

[59C.01] SHORT TITLE.

This chapter may be cited as the Vehicle Protection Product Act.

EFFECTIVE DATE.

This section is effective January 1, 2008.

Sec. 22.

[59C.02] DEFINITIONS.

Subdivision 1.

Terms.

For purposes of this chapter, the terms defined in subdivisions 2 to 11 have the meanings given them.

Subd. 2.

Administrator.

"Administrator" means a third party other than the warrantor who is designated by the warrantor to be responsible for the administration of vehicle protection product warranties.

Subd. 3.

Commissioner.

"Commissioner" means the commissioner of commerce.

Subd. 4.

Department.

"Department" means the Department of Commerce.

Subd. 5.

Incidental costs.

"Incidental costs" means expenses specified in the warranty incurred by the warranty holder related to the failure of the vehicle protection product to perform as provided in the warranty. Incidental costs may include, without limitation, insurance policy deductibles, rental vehicle charges, the difference between the actual value of the stolen vehicle at the time of theft and the cost of a replacement vehicle, sales taxes, registration fees, transaction fees, and mechanical inspection fees.

Subd. 6.

Service contract.

"Service contract" means a contract or agreement as regulated under chapter 59B.

Subd. 7.

Vehicle protection product.

"Vehicle protection product" means a vehicle protection device, system, or service that:

(1) is installed on or applied to a vehicle;

(2) is designed to prevent loss or damage to a vehicle from a specific cause; and

(3) includes a written warranty.

For purposes of this section, vehicle protection product includes, without limitation, alarm systems; body part marking products; steering locks; window etch products; pedal and ignition locks; fuel and ignition kill switches; and electronic, radio, and satellite tracking devices.

Subd. 8.

Vehicle protection product warranty or warranty.

"Vehicle protection product warranty" or "warranty" means, for the purposes of this chapter, a written agreement by a warrantor that provides if the vehicle protection product fails to prevent loss or damage to a vehicle from a specific cause, that the warranty holder must be paid specified incidental costs by the warrantor as a result of the failure of the vehicle protection product to perform pursuant to the terms of the warranty.

Subd. 9.

Vehicle protection product warrantor or warrantor.

"Vehicle protection product warrantor" or "warrantor," for the purposes of this chapter, means a person who is contractually obligated to the warranty holder under the terms of the vehicle protection product warranty agreement. Warrantor does not include an authorized insurer providing a warranty reimbursement insurance policy.

Subd. 10.

Warranty holder.

"Warranty holder," for the purposes of this chapter, means the person who purchases a vehicle protection product or who is a permitted transferee.

Subd. 11.

Warranty reimbursement insurance policy.

"Warranty reimbursement insurance policy" means a policy of insurance that is issued to the vehicle protection product warrantor to provide reimbursement to, or to pay on behalf of, the warrantor all covered contractual obligations incurred by the warrantor under the terms and conditions of the insured vehicle protection product warranties sold by the warrantor.

EFFECTIVE DATE.

This section is effective January 1, 2008.

Sec. 23.

[59C.03] SCOPE AND EXEMPTIONS.

(a) No vehicle protection product may be sold or offered for sale in this state unless the seller, warrantor, and administrator, if any, comply with the provisions of this chapter.

(b) Vehicle protection product warrantors and related vehicle protection product sellers and warranty administrators complying with this chapter are not required to comply with and are not subject to any other provision of chapters 59B to 72A, except that section 72A.20, subdivision 38, shall apply to vehicle protection product warranties in the same manner it applies to service contracts.

(c) Service contract providers who do not sell vehicle protection products are not subject to the requirements of this chapter and sales of veh