The chief of the division of soil and water resources, subject to the approval of the director of natural resources, shall do all of the following:
(A) Provide administrative leadership to local soil and water conservation districts in planning, budgeting, staffing, and administering district programs and the training of district supervisors and personnel in their duties, responsibilities, and authorities as prescribed in this chapter and Chapter 1515. of the Revised Code;
(B) Administer this chapter and Chapter 1515. of the Revised Code pertaining to state responsibilities and provide staff assistance to the Ohio soil and water conservation commission in exercising its statutory responsibilities;
(C) Assist in expediting state responsibilities for watershed development and other natural resource conservation works of improvement;
(D) Coordinate the development and implementation of cooperative programs and working agreements between local soil and water conservation districts and divisions or sections of the department of natural resources, or other agencies of local, state, and federal government;
(E) Subject to the approval of the Ohio soil and water conservation commission, adopt, amend, or rescind rules pursuant to Chapter 119. of the Revised Code. Rules adopted pursuant to this section:
(1) Shall establish technically feasible and economically reasonable standards to achieve a level of management and conservation practices in farming or silvicultural operations that will abate wind or water erosion of the soil or abate the degradation of the waters of the state by animal waste or by soil sediment including substances attached thereto, and establish criteria for determination of the acceptability of such management and conservation practices;
(2) Shall establish technically feasible and economically reasonable standards to achieve a level of management and conservation practices that will abate wind or water erosion of the soil or abate the degradation of the waters of the state by soil sediment in conjunction with land grading, excavating, filling, or other soil-disturbing activities on land used or being developed for nonfarm commercial, industrial, residential, or other nonfarm purposes, and establish criteria for determination of the acceptability of such management and conservation practices. The standards shall be designed to implement applicable areawide waste treatment management plans prepared under section 208 of the "Federal Water Pollution Control Act," 86 Stat. 816 (1972), 33 U.S.C.A. 1288, as amended. The standards and criteria shall not apply in any municipal corporation or county that adopts ordinances or rules pertaining to sediment control, nor to lands being used in a strip mine operation as defined in section 1513.01 of the Revised Code, nor to lands being used in a surface mining operation as defined in section 1514.01 of the Revised Code.
(3) May recommend criteria and procedures for the approval of urban sediment pollution abatement plans and issuance of permits prior to any grading, excavating, filling, or other whole or partial disturbance of five or more contiguous acres of land owned by one person or operated as one development unit and require implementation of such a plan. Areas of less than five contiguous acres are not exempt from compliance with other provisions of this chapter and rules adopted under them.
(4) Shall establish procedures for administration of rules for agricultural pollution abatement and urban sediment pollution abatement and for enforcement of rules for agricultural pollution abatement;
(5) Shall specify the pollution abatement practices eligible for state cost sharing and determine the conditions for eligibility, the construction standards and specifications, the useful life, the maintenance requirements, and the limits of cost sharing for those practices. Eligible practices shall be limited to practices that address agricultural or silvicultural operations and that require expenditures that are likely to exceed the economic returns to the owner or operator and that abate soil erosion or degradation of the waters of the state by animal waste or soil sediment including pollutants attached thereto.
(6) Shall establish procedures for administering grants to owners or operators of agricultural land or concentrated animal feeding operations for the implementation of operation and management plans;
(7) Shall establish procedures for administering grants to soil and water conservation districts for urban sediment pollution abatement programs, specify the types of projects eligible for grants, establish limits on the availability of grants, and establish requirements governing the execution of projects to encourage the reduction of erosion and sedimentation associated with soil-disturbing activities;
(8) Shall do all of the following with regard to composting conducted in conjunction with agricultural operations:
(a) Provide for the distribution of educational material concerning composting to the offices of the Ohio cooperative extension service for the purposes of section 1511.022 of the Revised Code;
(b) Establish methods, techniques, or practices for composting dead animals, or particular types of dead animals, that are to be used at such operations, as the chief considers to be necessary or appropriate;
(c) Establish requirements and procedures governing the review and approval or disapproval of composting plans by the supervisors of soil and water conservation districts under division (Q) of section 1515.08 of the Revised Code.
(9) Shall be adopted, amended, or rescinded after the chief does all of the following:
(a) Mails notice to each statewide organization that the chief determines represents persons or local governmental agencies who would be affected by the proposed rule, amendment thereto, or rescission thereof at least thirty-five days before any public hearing thereon;
(b) Mails a copy of each proposed rule, amendment thereto, or rescission thereof to any person who requests a copy, within five days after receipt of the request;
(c) Consults with appropriate state and local governmental agencies or their representatives, including statewide organizations of local governmental officials, industrial representatives, and other interested persons;
(d) If the rule relates to agricultural pollution abatement, develops an economic impact statement concerning the effect of the proposed rule or amendment.
(10) Shall not conflict with air or water quality standards adopted pursuant to section 3704.03 or 6111.041 of the Revised Code. Compliance with rules adopted pursuant to this section does not affect liability for noncompliance with air or water quality standards adopted pursuant to section 3704.03 or 6111.041 of the Revised Code. The application of a level of management and conservation practices recommended under this section to control windblown soil from farming operations creates a presumption of compliance with section 3704.03 of the Revised Code as that section applies to windblown soil.
(11) Insofar as the rules relate to urban sediment pollution, shall not be applicable in a municipal corporation or county that adopts ordinances or rules for urban sediment control, except that a municipal corporation or county that adopts such ordinances or rules may receive moneys for urban sediment control that are disbursed by the board of supervisors of the applicable soil and water conservation district under division (N) of section 1515.08 of the Revised Code. The rules shall not exempt any person from compliance with municipal ordinances enacted pursuant to Section 3 of Article XVIII, Ohio Constitution.
(F) Cost share with landowners on practices established pursuant to division (E)(5) of this section as moneys are appropriated and available for that purpose. Any practice for which cost share is provided shall be maintained for its useful life. Failure to maintain a cost share practice for its useful life shall subject the landowner to full repayment to the division.
(G) Issue orders requiring compliance with any rule adopted under division (E)(1) of this section or with section 1511.022 of the Revised Code. Before the chief issues an order, the chief shall afford each person allegedly liable an adjudication hearing under Chapter 119. of the Revised Code. The chief may require in an order that a person who has caused agricultural pollution by failure to comply with the standards established under division (E)(1) of this section operate under an operation and management plan approved by the chief under this section. The chief shall require in an order that a person who has failed to comply with division (A) of section 1511.022 of the Revised Code prepare a composting plan in accordance with rules adopted under division (E)(10)(c) of this section and operate in accordance with that plan or that a person who has failed to operate in accordance with such a plan begin to operate in accordance with it. Each order shall be issued in writing and contain a finding by the chief of the facts upon which the order is based and the standard that is not being met.
(H) Employ field assistants and such other employees as are necessary for the performance of the work prescribed by Chapter 1515. of the Revised Code, for performance of work of the division, and as agreed to under working agreements or contractual arrangements with local soil and water conservation districts, prescribe their duties, and fix their compensation in accordance with such schedules as are provided by law for the compensation of state employees.
All employees of the division, unless specifically exempted by law, shall be employed subject to the classified civil service laws in force at the time of employment.
(I) In connection with new or relocated projects involving highways, underground cables, pipelines, railroads, and other improvements affecting soil and water resources, including surface and subsurface drainage:
(1) Provide engineering service as is mutually agreeable to the Ohio soil and water conservation commission and the director to aid in the design and installation of soil and water conservation practices as a necessary component of such projects;
(2) Maintain close liaison between the owners of lands on which the projects are executed, local soil and water conservation districts, and authorities responsible for such projects;
(3) Review plans for such projects to ensure their compliance with standards developed under division (E) of this section in cooperation with the department of transportation or with any other interested agency that is engaged in soil or water conservation projects in the state in order to minimize adverse impacts on soil and water resources adjacent to or otherwise affected by these projects;
(4) Recommend measures to retard erosion and protect soil and water resources through the installation of water impoundment or other soil and water conservation practices;
(5) Cooperate with other agencies and subdivisions of the state to protect the agricultural status of rural lands adjacent to such projects and control adverse impacts on soil and water resources.
(J) Collect, analyze, inventory, and interpret all available information pertaining to the origin, distribution, extent, use, and conservation of the soil resources of the state;
(K) Prepare and maintain up-to-date reports, maps, and other materials pertaining to the soil resources of the state and their use and make that information available to governmental agencies, public officials, conservation entities, and the public;
(L) Provide soil and water conservation districts with technical assistance including on-site soil investigations and soil interpretation reports on the suitability or limitations of soil to support a particular use or to plan soil conservation measures. The assistance shall be upon such terms as are mutually agreeable to the districts and the department of natural resources.
(M) Assist local government officials in utilizing land use planning and zoning, current agricultural use value assessment, development reviews, and land management activities;
(N) When necessary for the purposes of this chapter or Chapter 1515. of the Revised Code, develop or approve operation and management plans.
This section does not restrict the excrement of domestic or farm animals defecated on land outside a concentrated animal feeding operation or runoff therefrom into the waters of the state.
Amended by 128th General AssemblyFile No.9,HB 1, §101.01, eff. 7/17/2009.
Effective Date: 03-15-2001