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S.B. 94






Sponsor: Leonard M. Blackham

             6      This act modifies the County Code relating to agricultural protection areas and the Utah
             7      Criminal Code relating to nuisances. The act extends the sound agricultural practices
             8      defense to criminal actions for public nuisance.
             9      This act affects sections of Utah Code Annotated 1953 as follows:
             10      AMENDS:
             11          17-41-403, as last amended by Chapter 383, Laws of Utah 1997
             12          76-10-803, as last amended by Chapter 1, Laws of Utah 2000
             13      Be it enacted by the Legislature of the state of Utah:
             14          Section 1. Section 17-41-403 is amended to read:
             15           17-41-403. Nuisances.
             16          (1) Each political subdivision shall ensure that any of its laws or ordinances that define or
             17      prohibit a public nuisance exclude from the definition or prohibition any agricultural activity or
             18      operation within an agriculture protection area conducted using sound agricultural practices unless
             19      that activity or operation bears a direct relationship to public health or safety.
             20          (2) In a civil action for nuisance [involving agricultural activities] or a criminal action for
             21      public nuisance under Section 76-10-803 , it is a complete defense if the action involves
             22      agricultural activities and those agricultural activities were:
             23          (a) [the agricultural activities were] conducted within an agriculture protection area; and
             24          (b) [the agricultural activities were] not in violation of any federal, state, or local law or
             25      regulation relating to the alleged nuisance or were conducted according to sound agricultural
             26      practices.
             27          (3) For any new subdivision development located in whole or in part within 300 feet of

             28      the boundary of an agriculture protection area, the owner of the development shall provide notice
             29      on any plat filed with the county recorder the following notice:
"Agriculture Protection Area

             31          This property is located in the vicinity of an established agriculture protection area in
             32      which normal agricultural uses and activities have been afforded the highest priority use
             33      status. It can be anticipated that such agricultural uses and activities may now or in the
             34      future be conducted on property included in the agriculture protection area. The use and
             35      enjoyment of this property is expressly conditioned on acceptance of any annoyance or
             36      inconvenience which may result from such normal agricultural uses and activities."
             37          Section 2. Section 76-10-803 is amended to read:
             38           76-10-803. "Public nuisance" defined.
             39          (1) A public nuisance is a crime against the order and economy of the state and consists
             40      in unlawfully doing any act or omitting to perform any duty, which act or omission:
             41          (a) annoys, injures, or endangers the comfort, repose, health, or safety of three or more
             42      persons;
             43          (b) offends public decency;
             44          (c) unlawfully interferes with, obstructs, or tends to obstruct, or renders dangerous for
             45      passage, any lake, stream, canal, or basin, or any public park, square, street, or highway;
             46          (d) is a nuisance as defined in Section 78-38-9 ; or
             47          (e) in any way renders three or more persons insecure in life or the use of property.
             48          (2) An act which affects three or more persons in any of the ways specified in this section
             49      is still a nuisance regardless of the extent to which the annoyance or damage inflicted on
             50      individuals is unequal.
             51          (3) (a) Agricultural operations that are consistent with sound agricultural practices are
             52      presumed to be reasonable and do not constitute a public nuisance under Subsection (1) unless the
             53      agricultural operation has a substantial adverse effect on the public health and safety.
             54          (b) Agricultural operations undertaken in conformity with federal, state, and local laws and
             55      regulations, including zoning ordinances, are presumed to be operating within sound agricultural
             56      practices.

Legislative Review Note
    as of 11-14-01 2:07 PM

A limited legal review of this legislation raises no obvious constitutional or statutory concerns.

Office of Legislative Research and General Counsel

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