Johnson introduces legislation to modernize drain project notification process

Categories: Steven Johnson News

State Rep. Steve Johnson has introduced legislation that would make various changes to the way landowners are notified of drainage projects taking place on or near their property.

Currently, a notice is required to be mailed to landowners when drainage projects are proposed in their drainage district. This notice includes information about a meeting where landowners can request changes to the amount they are to be assessed as well as a substantial amount of technical details regarding the drainage project, which often can become burdensome and confusing. Unfortunately, this notice does not include any kind of estimated dollar amount that the landowner will be assessed as a result of the project.

Rep. Johnson’s House Bill 6151 would make several common-sense changes to modernize the mailed notice of a proposed project by including an estimated dollar amount the landowner would be assessed and simplified details of the drain project. House Bill 6152 would also expand the lead time for when landowners receive the mailed notice from 10 to 30 days ahead of the day of review. Johnson’s changes also would require posting the full project details on the county drain commissioner’s website.

“This issue was brought to me by a local resident,” said Johnson, R-Wayland. “The drainage code is outdated and needs to be modernized, especially the notice requirements that are sent to landowners. Oftentimes, these notices are confusing and not relevant to the average resident. My legislation will streamline the information included in the notice and provide the needed clarity for residents to understand and have a say in what is being proposed.”

  The bills were referred to the House Local Government Committee for further consideration.