The commissioner of natural resources shall, on or before January 1, 1974, promulgate in the manner provided by chapter 15, rules containing standards and criteria governing the sale of licenses permitting the passage of utilities over public lands and waters. The rules shall include provisions to insure that all projects for which licenses are sold will have a minimum adverse impact on the environment. The commissioner of natural resources may, at public or private sale and for such price and upon such terms as are specified in the rules (except where prohibited by law) grant licenses permitting passage over, under, or across any part of any school, university, internal improvement, swamp, tax-forfeited or other land or public water under the control of the commissioner of natural resources, of telephone, telegraph, and electric power lines, cables or conduits, underground or otherwise, or mains or pipe lines for gas, liquids, or solids in suspension. Any such license shall be cancelable upon reasonable notice by the commissioner for substantial violation of its terms, or if at any time its continuance will conflict with a public use of the land or water over or upon which it is granted, or for any other cause. All such land or public water shall remain subject to sale or lease or other legal use, but in case of sale, lease or other use there may be excepted from the grant or other disposition of land or public water all rights included in any license over, under, or across it, and the license may contain an agreement that there will be such exception. The commissioner may charge a fee in lieu of but not less than that authorized by subdivision 5 if issuing a license containing an agreement that there will be such an exception. All rights so excepted shall be reserved to the state and be cancelable by the commissioner for the same reasons or cause as they might have been canceled before such sale, lease or other use of the land or water. Upon such cancellation, which shall be only after reasonable notice to the licensee, all rights granted by the license shall be vested in the state and may be granted again by the commissioner on the terms and conditions the commissioner may prescribe, but subject to cancellation for the same reasons or causes as they might have been originally canceled unless ownership of the fee and of the license are merged. Any license granted before April 13, 1951, may be governed by it if the licensee and commissioner so agree. Reasonable notice as used in this subdivision means a 90 day written notice addressed to the record owner of the license at the last known address, and upon cancellation the commissioner may grant extensions of time to vacate the premises affected.
The application for license or permit shall be in quadruplicate, and shall include with each copy a legal description of the lands or waters affected, a metes and bounds description of the required right-of-way, a map showing said features, and a detailed design of any structures necessary, or in lieu thereof shall be in such other form, and include such other descriptions, maps or designs, as the commissioner may require. The commissioner may at any time order such changes or modifications respecting construction or maintenance of structures or other conditions of the license or permit as the commissioner deems necessary to protect the public health and safety.
The license or permit to be granted shall be in a form to be prescribed by the attorney general; shall describe the location of the license or permit thereby granted and shall continue until canceled by the commissioner, subject to change or modification as herein provided.
In the event the construction of such lines causes damage to timber or other property of the state on or along the same, the license or permit shall also provide for payment to the commissioner of finance of the amount thereof as may be determined by the commissioner.
All money received under such licenses or permits shall be credited to the fund to which other income or proceeds of sale from such land would be credited, if provision therefor be made by law, otherwise to the general fund.