A BILL FOR AN ACT ENTITLED: "AN ACT Generally revising laws related to PROVIDING FOR A STATE POLICY ON POLLINATORS; REQUIRING NOXIOUS WEED MANAGEMENT PROGRAMS FOR CERTAIN STATE LANDS TO SEED or plant NATIVE PLANTS FRIENDLY TO ANIMAL POLLINATORS, TO PROHIBIT THE USE OF NEONICOTINOID INSECTICIDES, AND TO REIMBURSE PERSONS FOR DAMAGE TO APIARIES; AUTHORIZING POLLINATOR SPECIALTY LICENSE PLATES TO FUND THE POLLINATOR SPECIAL REVENUE ACCOUNT; PROVIDING THAT THE DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE ESTABLISH AND ADMINISTER A PROGRAM TO REIMBURSE FOR LOSSES AND DAMAGES TO APIARIES; AUTHORIZING DISTRIBUTION OF FUNDS TO COUNTY WEED DISTRICTS FOR POLLINATOR HABITAT; AMENDING SECTIONS 23-1-127, 23-2-113, 60-2-208, 76-12-121, 77-1-101, 77-1-810, 87-1-241, AND 87-5-802, MCA; and PROVIDING AN EFFECTIVE DATE."
NEW SECTION. Section 1. State policy for pollinators -- definition. (1) It is the state policy that a noxious weed management program developed pursuant to 7-22-2121 or revegetation or reseeding project for state parks, fishing access sites, summer motorized recreation trails, transportation commission-designated highways, natural areas, state lands, state wildlife habitat, and state wildlife habitat improvement projects must include the seeding or planting of native plants friendly to animal pollinators.
(2) A noxious weed management program or revegetation or reseeding project developed for these parks, sites, trails, highways, areas, lands, or habitat must prohibit the use of neonicotinoid insecticides.
NEW SECTION. Section 2. Pollinator license plates -- surcharge -- disposition. (1) Subject to 61-3-472 through 61-3-481 and this section, the board may sponsor a generic specialty license plate designed to support:
(2) A Montana resident may purchase pollinator plates for a $15 surcharge to be paid for each original set of plates and each renewal. The surcharge is in addition to the one-time administrative fee charged pursuant to 61-3-480(1).
NEW SECTION. Section 3. Pollinator special revenue account -- sources of funds -- designated uses. (1) There is a pollinator special revenue account in the state special revenue fund, established pursuant to 17-2-102(1)(b), to the credit of the department of agriculture for the purposes of [section 1].
(d) establish a claim process to be used when a person suffers a loss or damage from the use of neonicotinoid insecticides to a colony at an apiary site authorized by this part. The claim process must set out a clear and concise method for documenting and processing claims for reimbursement.
(3) (a) After all claims subject to subsection (2) are paid on an annual basis, the department shall distribute equally among Montana's counties that have established a noxious weed management program the funds in the pollinator special revenue account provided for in this section to be deposited in the county noxious weed fund as provided in 7-22-2141.
(b) The weed management districts shall use the funds on a county level for noxious weed management programs that require the seeding or planting of native plants friendly to animal pollinators and the prohibition of the use of neonicotinoid insecticides.
"23-1-127. Maintenance priority -- maintenance defined. With regard to state parks and fishing access sites, implementation of the good neighbor policy requires that priority is to be given to maintenance of existing facilities, rather than to development or improvement. For purposes of 23-1-126 and this section, "maintenance" means:
(7) in-kind replacement of existing facilities, including electric lines or facilities, or replacement of those existing facilities with facilities that have less impact on the state park or fishing access site;
(11) minimal signage necessary to inform users of appropriate state park or fishing access site use and applicable regulations and of historical, natural, cultural, geographical, and geological features in the area;
(15)(16) other necessary activities and expenditures consistent with the good neighbor policy and the intent of 23-1-126, 23-1-128, and this section, including new trails, new boat ramps, and necessary new access roads into and within the state park or fishing access site."
"23-2-113. Summer motorized recreation trail grant program -- rulemaking. (1) There is a summer motorized recreation trail grant program by which the department may grant funds deposited in the account established in 23-2-112 to private clubs and organizations for the following purposes:
"60-2-208. Seeding along highways -- weed management program. (1) After a segment of a commission-designated highway system or state highway is constructed, the department shall seed barrow pits, slopes, and shoulders to an adaptable perennial grass or combination of perennial grasses, and legumes, and native plants friendly to animal pollinators whenever establishment of perennial grass covers seem suitable. The seed must be certified.
(2) The department shall seek joint recommendations and specifications as to time and method of seeding, fertilizing practices, and grass species from the Montana extension service, the experiment station, and the natural resources conservation service.
(3) After a right-of-way in open range has been fenced pursuant to 60-7-103, the department may seed the land within the fence with a grass that may be cropped for hay and may lease the land or sell the right to take the hay to qualified persons.
"76-12-121. Duties of department -- plan for natural areas system. The department may:
(b) include identification of important natural area needs, viable methods to make eligible lands a part of the natural areas system, responsible management entities, goals for establishing natural areas, obligations of cooperating agencies, organizations, and individuals, and administrative procedures for registering natural areas with the department;
(5) provide that designated natural areas on state lands are available for multiple uses, including but not limited to grazing, recreation, and snowmobiling, if such uses are consistent with the state's obligations under The Enabling Act and do not interfere with the management or integrity of the natural area; and
(6) provide that the management of natural areas on state lands includes provisions for weed control consistent with 7-22-2151 and [section 1]. The department assumes any levy under 7-22-2142 in natural areas; the lessee is not responsible for fire suppression costs in natural areas, and the lessee is not responsible for keeping natural areas free of garbage and debris."
(2) "Commercial or concentrated recreational use" means any recreational use that is organized, developed, or coordinated, whether for profit or otherwise. Commercial or concentrated recreational use includes all outfitting activity and all activities not included within the definition of general recreational use.
(4) "Distributable revenue" applies to all land trusts managed by the board, except property held pursuant to the Morrill Act of 1862, 7 U.S.C. 301 through 308, and the Morrill Act of 1890, 7 U.S.C. 321 through 329, and includes:
(a) 95% of all revenue from the management of school trust lands and the common school permanent fund, except for mineral royalties or land sale proceeds that are deposited directly in the permanent fund;
(d) adjacent contiguous private land if permission to cross the land has been secured from the landowner. The granting of permission by a private landowner to cross private property in a particular instance does not subject the state land that is accessed to general recreational use by members of the public, other than those granted permission.
(7) "Noxious weeds" or "weeds" means any exotic plant species established or that may be introduced in the state that may render land unfit for agriculture, forestry, livestock, wildlife, or other beneficial uses or that may harm native plant communities and that is designated:
"77-1-810. Weed control management. (1) The department shall establish a weed control management program for the control of noxious weeds reasonably proved to be caused by the recreational use of state lands. The department may by rule establish a noxious weed management program that may include direct compensation for noxious weed control activities or participation in district and county weed control projects or department-initiated weed control activities. The noxious weed management program is subject to [section 1].
"87-1-241. Acquisition of wildlife habitat -- rules. (1) Before acquisition of any interest in land for the primary purpose of securing wildlife habitat the commission shall by rule establish a policy for making such acquisitions. With regard to any specific acquisition the policy shall provide for a comprehensive analysis of:
(2) The analysis made of any proposed acquisition must be made available for review by each owner of land adjacent to the property that is the subject of analysis, and to any member of the public. A public hearing must be held in the affected area after the analysis has been made available to the public."
(5) "Noxious weed management" means an integrated weed management program subject to [section 1] for the containment, suppression, and, where possible, eradication of noxious weeds. The term includes a long-term management approach toward noxious weeds that includes but is not limited to hand-pulling, cultivation, herbicide application, mechanical or biological control, prescribed grazing or burning, prevention, and revegetation subject to [section 1]. (Terminates June 30, 2023--sec. 11, Ch. 342, L. 2017.)"
NEW SECTION. Section 12. Codification instruction. [Sections 1 through 3] are intended to be codified as an integral part of Title 80, chapter 6, part 1, and the provisions of Title 80, chapter 6, part 1, apply to [sections 1 through 3].
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Prepared by Montana Legislative Services