University of Vermont AAHS

Minnesota Agricultural Protection Act

MINNESOTA STATUTES
DECLARATORY, CORRECTIVE, ADMINISTRATIVE REMEDIES
CHAPTER 561. NUISANCE, TRESPASS, WASTE; DAMAGES

561.19. Nuisance liability of agricultural operations

Subdivision 1. Definitions. For the purposes of this section, the following terms have the meanings given them:
(a) "Agricultural operation" means a facility and its appurtenances for the production of crops, livestock, poultry, dairy products or poultry products, but not a facility primarily engaged in processing agricultural products.

(b) "Established date of operation" means the date on which the agricultural operation commenced. If the agricultural operation is subsequently expanded or significantly altered, the established date of operation for each expansion or alteration is deemed to be the date of commencement of the expanded or altered operation. As used in this paragraph, "expanded" means an expansion by at least 25 percent in the number of a particular kind of animal or livestock located on an agricultural operation.
"Significantly altered" does not mean:
(1) a transfer of an ownership interest to and held by persons or the spouses of persons related to each other within the third degree of kindred according to the rules of civil law to the person making the transfer so long as at least one of the related persons is actively operating the farm, or to a family farm trust under section 500.24;
(2) temporary cessation or interruption of cropping activities;
(3) adoption of new technologies; or
(4) a change in the crop product produced.

Subd. 2. Agricultural operation not a nuisance. (a) An agricultural operation is not and shall not become a private or public nuisance after two years from its established date of operation if the operation was not a nuisance at its established date of operation.
(b) An agricultural operation is operating according to generally accepted agricultural practices if it is located in an agriculturally zoned area and complies with the provisions of all applicable federal and state statutes and rules or any issued permits for the operation.

(c) The provisions of this subdivision do not apply:
(1) to a condition or injury which results from the negligent or improper operation of an agricultural operation or from operations contrary to commonly accepted agricultural practices or to applicable state or local laws, ordinances, rules, or permits;
(2) when an agricultural operation causes injury or direct threat of injury to the health or safety of any person;
(3) to the pollution of, or change in the condition of, the waters of the state or the overflow of waters on the lands of any person;
(4) to an animal feedlot facility with a swine capacity of 1,000 or more animal units as defined in the rules of the pollution control agency for control of pollution from animal feedlots, or a cattle capacity of 2,500 animals or more; or
(5) to any prosecution for the crime of public nuisance as provided in section 609.74 or to an action by a public authority to abate a particular condition which is a public nuisance.

Subd. 3. Existing contracts. This section shall not be construed to invalidate any contracts or commitments made before January 1, 1983.

Subd. 4. Severability. If a provision of this section, or application thereof to any person or set of circumstances, is held invalid or unconstitutional, the invalidity shall not affect other provisions or applications of this section which can be given effect without the invalid provision or application. To that end, the provisions of this section are declared to be severable.

Subd. 5. Repealed by Laws 1983, c. 182, 2.

Enacted in 1982, amended in 2001..
Reviewed by AAHS in June 2001
Reviewed and updated by AAHS in April 2003..



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