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92.115 History History: 1975 c. 312; 1981 c. 317, 346; 1999 a. 150 s. 371; Stats. 1999 s. 92.115.
92.12 92.12 Intergovernmental cooperation. Counties, cities, villages, towns and public agencies with natural resource responsibilities in the same or different counties may cooperate in carrying out the purposes of this chapter. If a problem of soil or water conservation is defined in part by drainage basin boundaries beyond a single county's borders or otherwise transcends these borders, the respective counties, cities, villages, towns and public agencies with natural resource responsibilities may enter into mutually binding agreements and contracts containing, but not limited to, provisions for mutually enforced and administered regulatory ordinances and cost-sharing distribution arrangements.
92.12 History History: 1981 c. 346; 1983 a. 410 s. 2200 (2); 1985 a. 332 s. 251 (8).
92.13 92.13 State and local agencies to cooperate. Agencies of the state having jurisdiction over, or charged with the administration of any state-owned lands, and any county or other governmental subdivision of the state having jurisdiction over, or charged with the administration of any county-owned or other publicly owned lands, shall cooperate to the fullest extent with the land conservation committee in carrying out programs under this chapter. The land conservation committee may enter and perform work upon these publicly owned lands. The provisions of land conservation practices ordinances enacted under s. 92.11 are applicable to these publicly owned lands, and shall be in all respects observed by the agencies administering the lands.
92.13 History History: 1981 c. 346; 1983 a. 410 s. 2200 (2); 1985 a. 332 s. 251 (8).
92.14 92.14 Soil and water resource management program.
92.14(1)(1)Definitions. In this section:
92.14(1)(a) (a) “Best management practices" has the meaning given under s. 281.65 (2) (a).
92.14(1)(b) (b) “Nonpoint source" has the meaning given under s. 281.65 (2) (b).
92.14(1)(c) (c) “Priority watershed" has the meaning given under s. 281.65 (2) (c).
92.14(2) (2) Establishment. There is created a soil and water resource management program, which has all of the following purposes:
92.14(2)(a) (a) Enhancing protection of surface water and groundwater resources in this state.
92.14(2)(c) (c) Providing statewide financial and technical assistance for land and water conservation activities at the county level.
92.14(2)(d) (d) Promoting cost-effective land and water conservation activities.
92.14(2)(e) (e) Promoting soil and water conservation by persons claiming farmland preservation tax credits under subch. IX of ch. 71.
92.14(2)(g) (g) Promoting and attaining the soil erosion control goals specified under s. 92.025.
92.14(2)(h) (h) Encouraging innovative local strategies, regulations and incentives to address soil and source water conservation activities.
92.14(2)(i) (i) Increasing local technical assistance to address soil and water resource problems.
92.14(2)(j) (j) Enhancing the administration and coordination of state nonpoint source water pollution abatement activities by the department and the department of natural resources, including providing a single process for grant application, funding allocation, reporting and evaluation.
92.14(3) (3) Basic allocations to counties. To help counties fund their land and water conservation activities, the department shall award an annual grant from the appropriation under s. 20.115 (7) (c), (qe), or (qf) or s. 20.866 (2) (we) to any county land conservation committee that has a land and water resource management plan approved by the department under s. 92.10 (4) (d), and that, by county board action, has resolved to provide any matching funds required under sub. (5g). The county may use the grant for land and water resource management planning and for any of the following purposes, consistent with the approved land and water resource management plan:
92.14(3)(a) (a) County land conservation personnel to administer and implement activities directly related to any of the following:
92.14(3)(a)1. 1. Compliance with soil and water conservation requirements applicable to persons claiming farmland preservation tax credits under subch. IX of ch. 71.
92.14(3)(a)2. 2. Animal waste management activities and ordinances under s. 92.16.
92.14(3)(a)4. 4. Nonpoint source water pollution abatement activities.
92.14(3)(a)5. 5. Other conservation activities determined by the county to be necessary for conservation and resource management in that county.
92.14(3)(b) (b) Grants to farmers for implementing best management practices required under a shoreland management ordinance enacted under s. 92.17, including reimbursement for all of the following:
92.14(3)(b)1. 1. The cost of fencing that the landowner installs in order to comply with the ordinance.
92.14(3)(b)2. 2. The cost of providing a well for livestock if, as a result of complying with the ordinance, the livestock does not have adequate access to water for drinking purposes.
92.14(3)(c) (c) Implementing land and water resource management projects approved in plans under s. 92.10.
92.14(3)(d) (d) Implementing land and water resource management projects undertaken to comply with soil and water conservation requirements applicable to persons claiming farmland preservation tax credits under subch. IX of ch. 71.
92.14(3)(e) (e) Construction of a facility or system related to animal waste management by a farmer who has received a notice of discharge under ch. 283 or management practices required under a notice to a farmer under s. 281.20 (3). The amount of a grant for management practices required under a notice to a farmer under s. 281.20 (3) shall be based on the cost of the method of controlling nonpoint source pollution that the department determines to be the most cost-effective.
92.14(3)(f) (f) Training required under s. 92.18 or any other training necessary to prepare personnel to perform job duties related to this section or s. 281.65.
92.14(3)(g) (g) Technical assistance, education and training, ordinance development or administration related to this chapter or s. 281.65.
92.14(5g) (5g) Matching funds.
92.14(5g)(a)(a) Except as provided in par. (b), if a grant under sub. (3) provides funding for salary and fringe benefits for more than one county staff person, a county shall provide matching funds, as determined by the department by rule, equal to 30 percent of the cost of salary and fringe benefits for the 2nd staff person and 50 percent of the cost of salary and fringe benefits for any additional staff persons for whom the grant provides funding.
92.14(5g)(b) (b) For a grant awarded for a year before 2010, the department shall require a county to provide matching funds for priority watershed project staff equal to not less than 10 percent nor more than 30 percent of the staff funding that was provided to the county for 1997 for a priority watershed that was designated before July 1, 1998. This paragraph does not apply to matching funds for priority watershed project staff after the termination date that was in effect on October 6, 1998, for the priority watershed project.
92.14(5r) (5r) Annual grant request. Every land conservation committee shall prepare annually a grant request that describes the land and water resource staffing needs and activities to be undertaken or funded by the county under this chapter and ss. 281.65 and 281.66 and the funding needed for those purposes. The grant request shall be consistent with the county's plan under s. 92.10. The land conservation committee shall submit the grant request to the department.
92.14(6) (6) Administration of grants.
92.14(6)(b)(b) The department and the department of natural resources shall prepare an annual grant allocation plan identifying the amounts to be provided to counties under this section and ss. 281.65 and 281.66. In the allocation plan, the departments shall attempt to provide funding under this section for an average of 3 staff persons per county with full funding for the first staff person, 70 percent funding for the 2nd staff person and 50 percent funding for any additional staff persons and to provide an average of $100,000 per county for cost-sharing grants. The department shall submit that plan to the board.
92.14(6)(c) (c) When preparing an annual grant allocation plan under par. (b), the department and the department of natural resources shall consider the existence and location of impaired water bodies that the department of natural resources has identified to the federal environmental protection agency under 33 USC 1313 (d) (1) (A) and agricultural enterprise areas designated under s. 91.84, and shall give priority to providing cost-sharing for nutrient management planning projects that are in or near, or that affect, those areas.
92.14(6)(d) (d) The board shall review the annual allocation plan submitted to it under par. (b) and make recommendations to the department of agriculture, trade and consumer protection and the department of natural resources on approval, modification or disapproval of the plan.
92.14(6)(g) (g) Every grant awarded to a county under this section and s. 281.65 shall be consistent with the plans under s. 92.15, 1985 stats., and under this section and ss. 92.10 and 281.65.
92.14(6)(gm) (gm) A county may not provide cost-sharing funds using funds provided under this section in an amount that exceeds 70 percent of the cost of a project, except in cases of economic hardship, as defined by the department by rule.
92.14(6)(h)1.1. A county may not provide cost-sharing funds using funds provided under this section for the construction of any facility or system related to animal waste management unless all of the following conditions are met:
92.14(6)(h)1.a. a. The facility or system is necessary to meet surface water or groundwater quality objectives.
92.14(6)(h)1.b. b. The facility or system is designed consistent with rules of the department and with the technical standards of the county and is designed to be constructed and operated to avoid water pollution.
92.14(6)(h)1.c. c. The facility or system will use the most cost-effective method to meet water quality standards.
92.14(6)(h)1.d. d. The grant for the facility or system, combined with all other governmental funding, is no more than an amount specified by the department by rule, except that there is no limit on the amount of the grant if the principal purpose of the facility or system is to prevent or control barnyard runoff.
92.14(6)(h)3. 3. Nothing in this paragraph affects the authority of the department of natural resources to act under ch. 283.
92.14(6)(i) (i) No cost-sharing funds from any grant awarded under this section may be distributed to a landowner or land user unless he or she, by contract with the grant recipient, agrees to do all of the following:
92.14(6)(i)1. 1. Maintain any funded practice for its normal expected life, replace it with an equally effective practice or improvement or repay the cost-sharing funds to the grant recipient.
92.14(6)(i)2. 2. Conduct all land management and pollutant management activities in substantial accordance with the performance standards, prohibitions, conservation practices and technical standards under s. 281.16 and with plans approved under this section, under s. 92.15, 1985 stats., and under ss. 92.10 and 281.65, or to repay the cost-sharing funds.
92.14(6)(k) (k) The department shall identify by rule the types of cost-shared practices and the minimum grant amounts for cost-sharing grants that require any subsequent owner of the property to maintain the cost-shared practice for the life of the cost-shared practice, as determined by the department.
92.14(6)(L) (L) A county may provide cost-sharing funds from a grant under this section to replace a structure or facility at a new location, rather than to repair or reconstruct the structure or facility, if the relocation reduces water pollution and replacement is cost-effective compared to repairing or reconstructing the structure or facility.
92.14(6)(m) (m) The department of agriculture, trade and consumer protection and the department of natural resources shall assist counties in conducting the activities for which grants under sub. (3) may be used.
92.14(7) (7) Maintenance of effort. The department may not make a grant to a county under this section in any fiscal year unless that county enters into an agreement with the department to maintain or increase its aggregate expenditures from other sources for land and water conservation activities at or above the average level of such expenditures in its 2 fiscal years preceding August 1, 1987.
92.14(8) (8) Rules. In consultation with the department of natural resources, the department shall promulgate rules to administer this section and the department's duties under s. 281.65.
92.14(10) (10) Training. The department may contract with any person for services to administer or implement this chapter, including information and education and training.
92.14(12) (12) Annual report. Annually, the department, in cooperation with the department of natural resources, shall submit a report on the progress of the program under this section and s. 281.65 to the board.
92.14(13) (13) Evaluation plan. The department, jointly with the department of natural resources, shall prepare a plan, which includes water quality monitoring and analysis, for evaluating the program administered under this section and s. 281.65 and submit the plan to the board. The board shall make recommendations to the department and the department of natural resources on the plan. The department shall review and approve or disapprove the plan and shall notify the board of its final action on the plan. The department shall implement any part of the plan for which the plan gives it responsibility.
92.14(14) (14) Application, allocation, reporting and evaluation. The department, jointly with the department of natural resources, shall develop a single set of grant application, reporting and evaluation forms for use by counties receiving grants under this section and ss. 281.65 and 281.66. The department, jointly with the department of natural resources, shall implement a single process for grant application, funding allocation, reporting and evaluation for counties receiving grants under this section and ss. 281.65 and 281.66.
92.14(14m) (14m) Coordination. The department of agriculture, trade and consumer protection and the department of natural resources, jointly, shall review applications from counties for grants under sub. (5r) and, for projects and activities selected to receive funding shall determine whether to provide funding under this section or under s. 281.65 or 281.66.
92.14(15) (15) Financial information. The department shall consult with the department of natural resources when it prepares the information which it submits to the department of administration under s. 16.42.
92.14(16) (16) Commercial nitrogen optimization pilot program.
92.14(16)(a)(a) In addition to any grants provided under sub. (3), the department shall award grants from the appropriation under s. 20.115 (7) (qf) to agricultural producers and to University of Wisconsin System institutions as provided under this subsection.
92.14(16)(b) (b) An agricultural producer may apply for and receive a grant to implement a project, for at least 2 growing seasons, that optimizes the application of commercial nitrogen. Any agricultural producer receiving a grant under this subsection shall collaborate with any University of Wisconsin System institution under par. (c).
92.14(16)(c) (c) A University of Wisconsin System institution shall collaborate with an agricultural producer that applies for a grant under par. (b) to monitor the grant project on-site. A collaborating institution may receive a grant to implement the monitoring under this paragraph.
92.14(16)(d) (d) The department may not make a grant to an agricultural producer and the University of Wisconsin System institution collaborating with the agricultural producer in an amount that totals more than $50,000. No more than 20 percent of this total amount may be awarded to the collaborating University of Wisconsin System institution.
92.14(16)(e) (e) In making a grant under this subsection, the department shall collaborate with the University of Wisconsin System institution and the agricultural producer. The department shall also seek to provide grants to agricultural producers in different parts of the state and to provide grants for projects in areas that have different soil types or geologic characteristics. The department shall prioritize projects that are innovative and that are not currently funded through existing state or federal programs and shall prioritize agricultural producers that plan to implement projects for longer periods.
92.14(16)(f) (f) An agricultural producer and the University of Wisconsin System institution collaborating with the agricultural producer in implementing a project under this subsection may not be held civilly liable and may not be subject to any remedial action or other administrative or enforcement action from the department or the department of natural resources for any discharge of environmental pollution from the land involved in the project, if the actions were taken in good faith by the agricultural producer and the institution and conformed to the project specifications that were proposed to the department in an application for a grant under this subsection.
92.14(16)(g) (g) The department shall promulgate rules to implement this subsection.
92.14(17) (17) Crop insurance premium rebates for planting cover crops.
92.14(17)(a)(a) From the appropriation under s. 20.115 (7) (qf), the department may provide rebates in the amount of $5 for each acre of a cover crop planted for crop insurance premiums paid on those acres. In providing crop insurance premium rebates under this subsection, the department may cooperate with the risk management agency of the U.S. department of agriculture, and may cooperate with any related federal agency, state agency, or agricultural organization.
92.14(17)(b) (b) In providing crop insurance premium rebates under this subsection, the department may promulgate the following rules:
92.14(17)(b)1. 1. Rules determining the cover crops for which crop insurance premium rebates are provided under this subsection.
92.14(17)(b)2. 2. Rules establishing procedures for verifying that a cover crop is planted on acres for which a crop insurance premium rebate is provided under this subsection.
92.14(17)(b)3. 3. Rules determining the maximum amount of acres for which an applicant may receive funding in a year, except that the department may impose such a maximum only in years in which the total amount of funding requested by eligible applicants exceeds the total funding available.
92.14(17)(b)4. 4. Rules establishing the application and award process, including the application deadline and grant award schedule.
92.14(17)(c) (c) The department may not provide a crop insurance premium rebate under this subsection for the planting of a cover crop on an acre for which funding for planting a cover crop is provided from a federal or state grant or incentive program other than this subsection, including from any of the following:
92.14(17)(c)1. 1. The federal environmental quality incentives program under 16 USC 3839aa to 3839-8.
92.14(17)(c)2. 2. The federal conservation stewardship program under 16 USC 3839aa-21 to 3839aa-25.
92.14(17)(c)3. 3. A producer-led watershed protection grant under s. 93.59.
92.14(17)(c)4. 4. A grant provided under sub. (3).
92.14(17)(c)5. 5. A lake management planning grant under s. 281.68.
92.14(17)(c)6. 6. A lake management grant under s. 281.69.
92.14(17)(c)7. 7. A river protection grant under s. 281.70.
92.14(17)(d) (d) To receive a crop insurance premium rebate under this subsection, a person shall submit an application to the department, under the process established by the department by rule, after a cover crop is planted on the acres for which the person applies for a crop insurance premium rebate.
92.14(17)(e) (e) The department may conduct inspections to verify that recipients of a crop insurance premium rebate are in compliance with the provisions of this subsection and any rules promulgated under this subsection.
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