History: 1993 a. 456
NOTE: 1993 Wis. Act 456
, which created this section, contains extensive explanatory notes.
Construction and repair of drains crossing railroad right-of-way. 88.66(1)(1)
If necessary for proper drainage, the board may lay out and construct drains across any railway right-of-way within a district. As soon as the drain has been constructed up to such right-of-way, the railway company shall open its right-of-way and permit such drain to cross the same.
Every district whose drains cross the right-of-way of a railway company is liable to such company for the reasonable cost of opening its right-of-way and also for the cost of the culverts and bridges made necessary by such drain. The drainage board shall include such costs in its cost of construction, as set forth in its report of benefits and damages, and shall award them as damages to the railway company. The bridge or culvert shall be designed by the district's engineer and the design submitted to the railway company for approval. If a dispute arises as to the adequacy of the design, either party may submit the dispute to the office of the commissioner of railroads by filing with the office a statement as to the facts involved and the nature of the dispute. The office shall investigate and determine the matter in controversy in accordance with ch. 195
, and any order it makes in such proceeding has the same effect as an order in any other proceeding properly brought under ch. 195
Whenever the cleaning out, deepening or reconstruction of a drain crossing a railway right-of-way requires the lowering of a culvert through such right-of-way in order to provide effective drainage, the drainage board shall proceed as provided in subs. (4)
. Except as provided in par. (b)
, the expenses involved in such lowering shall be borne by the drainage district or as provided by mutual agreement between the railway company and the drainage board.
Whenever a railroad is being constructed or reconstructed across a drainage district's drain, or a culvert in such drain is being replaced, the railway company shall consult with the drainage board having jurisdiction of such district for the purpose of determining the depth at which such drain was laid out. If any culvert or similar opening in a railway right-of-way is installed at a grade higher than the depth at which such drain was laid out, the expenses involved in any future lowering of the culvert pursuant to par. (a)
shall be borne by the railway company unless the company was misled by the drainage board as to the proper grade at which to install the culvert. This paragraph applies only to work done after June 13, 1964.
Whenever it becomes necessary to open a railway right-of-way in order to permit cleaning out or repairing any district drain, the board shall ascertain the reasonable cost thereof and, except as otherwise provided in sub. (3)
, shall award such cost as damages to the railway company in the board's report when assessing the cost of repairs.
Upon receiving 30 days' notice in writing, any railway company across whose right-of-way any drainage district drain is laid out shall open its right-of-way to permit the board and its contractors, agents or employees to construct, clean out or repair such drain.
If the railway company fails to open its right-of-way as required by this section, the board may at any time after the expiration of 30 days from the giving of the notice specified in sub. (5)
open such right-of-way along the lines of such drains and construct, clean out or repair the same and may recover from the railway company the reasonable expense of opening the right-of-way.
The district constructing, cleaning out or repairing a drain across the right-of-way of a railway company shall so prosecute the work as not to delay traffic upon such railway for longer than is absolutely necessary.
Construction and repair of drains crossing utility installations; laying utility installations across drains. 88.67(1)(1)
Whenever the construction, reconstruction, clean out or repair of a drain makes necessary the removal or raising of a utility installation in order to permit the passage of a dredge or other machinery or whenever the lowering of an underground utility installation is necessary in order to provide effective drainage, the owner of the utility installation, upon being given 30 days' written notice stating the place where such dredge or machinery will pass or that lowering is necessary to provide effective drainage, shall remove, raise or lower the utility installation as requested by the board. Except as provided in sub. (3)
, the expenses involved in such removal, raising or lowering shall be borne by the drainage district or as provided by mutual agreement between the drainage board and the owner of the utility installation.
If after the 30 days' notice specified in sub. (1)
the owner of the utility installation fails to remove, raise or lower the same, the board may do so and may recover from the owner of the installation the cost of the removal, raising or lowering.
Whenever an underground utility installation is being laid or relaid across a drainage district's drain, the owner of the utility installation shall consult with the drainage board having jurisdiction of such district for the purpose of determining the grade at which such drain was laid out. If an underground utility installation is laid at a grade higher than the grade at which the drain was laid out, the expenses involved in any future lowering of the utility installation shall be borne by the owner of the utility installation unless the owner was misled by the drainage board as to the proper grade at which to lay the utility installation. This subsection applies only to work done after June 13, 1964.
In this section “utility installation" includes any sluice or pipe carrying any gas or liquid, or any wire, conduit or cable used for conducting electricity or for any other purpose, whether or not such installation is owned by a public utility.
Construction of drain across public highway; construction of bridges across drains. 88.68(1)(1)
Any drain across a public highway shall be constructed according to like specifications and at the same time as the drain above such highway is constructed.
If the construction of a drain across a public highway makes necessary the construction or reconstruction of a bridge, the drainage board and the officers in charge of maintenance of the highway shall try to agree on the best method of constructing or reconstructing the bridge. If they are unable to agree, the matter shall be submitted to arbitration under ch. 788
. If it is determined to reconstruct or add to the bridge, the district shall pay the costs incident to the reconstruction or addition. If it is determined to construct a new bridge, the drainage district shall pay to the unit of government responsible for the maintenance of the highway a sum that is considered equivalent to the value of the bridge in place at the time of the construction of the drain.
If the unit of government in charge of maintenance of a highway decides to construct a new bridge across a drain, the officers in charge of such construction shall notify the drainage board thereof by registered mail addressed to the secretary of the board. If the board within 10 days after receiving such notice notifies the officers in charge of construction of the bridge that it desires such bridge to be constructed with a certain clear span, the bridge shall be constructed in accordance with the board's order. If the board's order requires the bridge to be built of greater span than is necessary for proper drainage of flood waters, any excess cost resulting from such order shall be paid by the drainage district.
Whenever the cleaning out, deepening or reconstruction of a drain crossing a public highway requires the lowering of a culvert through such highway in order to provide effective drainage, the drainage board may proceed to lower such culvert only after obtaining a permit under s. 86.07 (2) (a)
. In lieu of issuing a permit, the authority in charge of maintenance of the highway may proceed to do the work itself. Except as provided in s. 86.075
, the expenses involved in such lowering shall be borne by the drainage district, or as provided by mutual agreement between the highway authority and the drainage board.
History: 1993 a. 456
; 2015 a. 231
District liable for damage to land outside its boundaries. 88.69(1)(1)
A drainage district is liable for any damages resulting to lands outside its boundaries because of work done within its boundaries. In this subsection “damages" means only such damages as could be recovered against a natural person for like injury resulting from like work. No action shall be taken to collect damages to outside lands until the damages actually have resulted. In cases of construction of new drains, the state may proceed pursuant to ch. 813
to prevent damage or injury to lands owned by the state.
If through the construction of a drain by a higher district a lower drainage district incurs extra expense in providing means to carry off the waters or remove the sediment flowing from the higher district, the higher district is liable for such increased cost. The amount of such increased cost may be agreed upon between the districts or may be recovered in an action at law.
History: Sup. Ct. Order, 67 Wis. 2d 585, 774 (1975).
Formation of subdistrict to obtain more thorough drainage. 88.70(1)(1)
If the owners of land in a part of a drainage district desire a more thorough or different drainage than the drains of the district currently provide or than the planned reconstruction will provide, a majority of the owners may petition the board to have specified lands set aside as a subdistrict of the drainage district in order to permit a more thorough or different drainage.
The board shall fix a time and place of a hearing on the petition and shall cause notice to be given under s. 88.05 (2) (b)
to the persons specified in s. 88.05 (4) (b)
If the drainage board is satisfied that the public health or public welfare will be promoted by more thorough or different drainage and that the benefits of the drainage will exceed the cost of construction, the drainage board shall order that a subdistrict of the drainage district be formed, give it a name or number and fix its boundaries.
After organizing the subdistrict, the board shall prepare a plan and specifications for the more thorough or different drainage, estimate the cost of construction of the drainage, estimate the cost of all additional bridges made necessary because of the drainage, and assess benefits against and award damages to all lands in the subdistrict that are benefited or damaged by the more thorough or different drainage. Assessments and awards shall be made substantially as provided in s. 88.35
Nothing in this section is intended to relieve owners of lands in the subdistrict of the proportionate share of their obligations to the district in which the subdistrict was formed.
History: 1993 a. 456
Enlarging or supplementing existing drains. 88.71(1)(1)
Whenever the board is petitioned by the owners of one-tenth of the lands in a district to enlarge existing drains or to lay out and construct new drains in such district, or whenever the board is of the opinion that the plan of drainage of the district is or will be insufficient to effect a thorough drainage of such district or any portion thereof, and that enlarged or supplemental drains are required to effect such drainage, the board shall cause to be prepared plans and specifications for the enlargement of existing drains or for the construction of sufficient supplemental drains to complete the drainage of such district.
If the drainage board is satisfied that the public health or welfare will be promoted by the enlarged or supplemental drains and that the benefits from the drains will exceed the cost of construction, the drainage board shall order the construction of the enlarged or supplemental drains.
The board shall estimate the cost of construction of the enlargements or supplemental drains together with the cost of all additional bridges that the district must build and shall assess the costs against the lands benefited, as provided in ss. 88.35
and in this subsection. The board shall award to each parcel of land the damages caused to the land by the supplemental work and shall assess benefits against the lands benefited by the supplemental work. The benefits shall be apportioned and assessed so that all assessed lands are required to pay a sum total for the construction of the total drainage proportionate to the actual benefits received by the lands from the total drainage.
History: 1993 a. 456
Removal of dams or other obstructions in drainage outlets. 88.72(1)(1)
The owners of more than one-tenth of the lands within any district may file with the drainage board a petition setting forth:
That the drains constructed within such district do not afford an adequate outlet for drainage;
That it is necessary in order to give an adequate outlet to remove certain dams or other obstructions from waters or streams or to deepen, straighten or widen the same either within or beyond the boundaries of such district; and
That the public health and the public welfare will be promoted by such work and that the navigability of such waters or streams and other public rights therein will not be materially impaired.
Upon receiving a petition under sub. (1)
, the drainage board shall fix a time and place of a hearing on the petition and shall cause notice of the hearing to be given under s. 88.05 (2) (b)
to the persons specified in s. 88.05 (4) (a)
, to the owner of any dam sought to be removed and to all riparian owners affected by the removal.
At the hearing on the petition, any interested person may appear and contest its sufficiency and the necessity for the work. If the drainage board finds that the petition has the proper number of signers and that to afford an adequate outlet it is necessary to remove dams or other obstructions from waters and streams which may be navigable, or to straighten, clean out, deepen or widen any waters or streams either within or beyond the limits of the district, the board shall obtain any permit that is required under this chapter or ch. 30
Within 30 days after the department of natural resources has issued all of the permits as required under this chapter and chs. 30
, the board shall proceed to estimate the cost of the work, including the expenses of the proceeding together with the damages that will result from the work, and shall, within a reasonable time, award damages to all lands damaged by the work and assess the cost of the work against the lands in the district in proportion to the assessment of benefits then in force.
The drainage board may grant the petition and order the additional work done only if the drainage board is satisfied that:
The intended result can be effectively achieved by additional work at a reasonable cost;
The public welfare will be promoted by such additional work;
The cost of such additional work, when added to all expenses previously incurred by the district will not exceed the total benefits theretofore assessed; and
A petition, which is the same in substance or effect as the current petition, has not previously been denied by the drainage board.
Providing drainage for lands assessed but not adequately drained. 88.73(1)(1)
Any person owning lands that have been assessed for costs of construction but which are in need of drainage because of being shut off from access to any district drain or because the slope of the land is such that it is impractical to drain the land into a district drain without crossing the lands of others may file with the drainage board a verified petition stating such facts, including a description of the lands sought to be drained and asking that a drain be laid out from the petitioner's lands to the district drain.
The petitioner and all persons whose lands will be directly affected by the proposed drain may, in writing, waive any or all notices of hearings and may consent to an immediate hearing on the petition, upon which the drainage board may enter an order to construct the drain. The board's order shall include all of the provisions of s. 88.35 (1)
. If no written waiver or consent is filed by all persons immediately interested, the procedure on a petition under this section shall be substantially as outlined in ss. 88.35
History: 1991 a. 316
; 1993 a. 456
District corridors. 88.74(1)(a)
Except as provided in par. (b)
, the board shall establish all of the following as district corridors:
A corridor which extends 20 feet from the top of the ditch bank on each side of a district ditch.
A corridor extending 20 feet from the centerline on each side of any other district drain or facility.
Upon notice to affected landowners, the board may establish and maintain a wider corridor if a wider corridor is necessary to meet any of the purposes specified under sub. (3)
The board shall provide notice of any corridor established under sub. (1)
to the county and the city, village, or town in which the corridor is located.
The board shall maintain a corridor established under sub. (1)
to accomplish all of the following purposes:
To provide the board with effective access to the drain or facility, including access for vehicles or equipment.
To protect water quality in the drain or facility.
To allow for the placement of dredge materials from maintaining the drain or facility.
Except as provided in pars. (b)
, the board may, without prior notice to the landowner, enter a corridor established under sub. (1)
to inspect, survey, maintain, repair, restore, or improve a drain, facility, or corridor.
Before doing any of the following in a corridor, the board shall notify the landowner of the pending action:
Cutting a tree that is more than 6 inches in diameter measured at breast height.
Excavating or depositing materials in the corridor.
Notice under par. (b)
may be given at any time before performance of the work and may be given in person, by telephone, by mail, or, if the landowner is not available, by posting notice at a conspicuous location at an entrance to the land.
If a drainage board intends to perform general maintenance work in a corridor during the year, the board shall provide notice to the landowner not later than March 1. Notice under this paragraph shall be given in person, by telephone, by mail, or by electronic means, or, if notice cannot be provided in one of these manners, by posting notice at a conspicuous location at an entrance to the land. This paragraph does not apply to emergency maintenance work.
No person may do any of the following in a corridor established under sub. (1)
without written permission from the board:
Place any obstruction in the corridor that interferes with the board's ability to accomplish a purpose under sub. (3)
A person who violates par. (a)
may not recover damages with regard to any damage to crops or obstructions caused by actions taken by the board under sub. (3)
does not require a landowner to remove any building or fixture constructed or installed in a corridor prior to September 1, 1999, or any structure that does not interfere with the board's maintenance of a drain and that was placed in the corridor for the purpose of providing drainage.
No city, village, town, or county may by ordinance, resolution, or any other means restrict, or impose other conditions related to, the board's maintenance of district corridors or ditches unless specifically required by federal law.
History: 2017 a. 115
ENLARGEMENT, CONSOLIDATION, DIVISION
AND DISSOLUTION OF DRAINAGE DISTRICT
Annexation of lands upon petition of owners. 88.77(1)(1)
If owners of lands adjacent to any drainage district want the lands to be annexed to the district, they may file with the drainage board a petition for annexation. The petition must be signed either by more than one-half of all of the owners of lands in the proposed annex, who shall represent more than one-third of the lands in the proposed annex, or by the owners of more than one-half of the lands in the proposed annex. The petition shall describe the lands sought to be annexed and shall set forth the names of the owners of all of those lands so far as the owners are known. The petition shall be accompanied by a plat showing the original district and the proposed annex.
If the undrained portion of the area proposed to be annexed to the district exceeds 200 acres, the drainage board shall request the report described under s. 88.11 (3)
from the department of agriculture, trade and consumer protection on the annexation. Within 60 days after the request, the department shall prepare and return a copy of the report and its approval or disapproval, as provided under s. 88.35 (7)