1.1.................... moves to amend H.F. No. 976, the delete everything amendment
1.2(H0976DE1), as follows:
1.3Page 37, after line 25, insert:

1.4    "Sec. .... Minnesota Statutes 2012, section 216E.12, subdivision 4, is amended to read:
1.5    Subd. 4. Contiguous land. (a) When private real property that is an agricultural or
1.6nonagricultural homestead, nonhomestead agricultural land, rental residential property,
1.7and both commercial and noncommercial seasonal residential recreational property, as
1.8those terms are defined in section 273.13 is proposed to be acquired for the construction of
1.9a site or route for a high-voltage transmission line with a capacity of 200 kilovolts or more
1.10by eminent domain proceedings, the fee owner, or when applicable, the fee owner with the
1.11written consent of the contract for deed vendee, or the contract for deed vendee with the
1.12written consent of the fee owner, shall have the option to require the utility to condemn a
1.13fee interest in any amount of contiguous, commercially viable land which the owner or
1.14vendee wholly owns or has contracted to own in undivided fee and elects in writing to
1.15transfer to the utility within 60 days after receipt of the notice of the objects of the petition
1.16filed pursuant to section 117.055. Commercial viability shall be determined without regard
1.17to the presence of the utility route or site. Within 60 days after receipt by the utility of
1.18an owner's election to exercise this option, the utility shall provide written notice to the
1.19owner of any objection the utility has to the owner's election, and if no objection is made
1.20within that time, any objection shall be deemed waived. Within 90 days of the service of
1.21an objection by the utility, the district court having jurisdiction over the eminent domain
1.22proceeding shall hold a hearing to determine whether the utility's objection is upheld or
1.23rejected. The owner or, when applicable, the contract vendee shall have only one such
1.24option and may not expand or otherwise modify an election without the consent of the
1.25utility. The required acquisition of land pursuant to this subdivision shall be considered
1.26an acquisition for a public purpose and for use in the utility's business, for purposes of
1.27chapter 117 and section 500.24, respectively; provided that a utility shall divest itself
2.1completely of all such lands used for farming or capable of being used for farming not
2.2later than the time it can receive the market value paid at the time of acquisition of lands
2.3less any diminution in value by reason of the presence of the utility route or site. Upon
2.4the owner's election made under this subdivision, the easement interest over and adjacent
2.5to the lands designated by the owner to be acquired in fee, sought in the condemnation
2.6petition for a right-of-way for a high-voltage transmission line with a capacity of 200
2.7kilovolts or more shall automatically be converted into a fee taking.
2.8(b) All rights and protections provided to an owner under chapter 117, including in
2.9particular sections 117.031, 117.036, 117.186, and 117.52, apply to acquisition of land
2.10or an interest in land under this section.
2.11(c) Within 90 days of an owner's election under this subdivision to require the utility
2.12to acquire land, or 90 days after a district court decision overruling a utility objection to an
2.13election made pursuant to paragraph (a), the utility must make a written offer to acquire
2.14that land and amend its condemnation petition to include the additional land.
2.15(d) For purposes of this subdivision, "owner" means the fee owner, or when
2.16applicable, the fee owner with the written consent of the contract for deed vendee, or the
2.17contract for deed vendee with the written consent of the fee owner.
2.18EFFECTIVE DATE.This section is effective the day following final enactment
2.19and applies to eminent domain proceedings or actions pending or commenced on or after
2.20that date. "Commenced" means when service of notice of the petition under Minnesota
2.21Statutes, section 117.055, is made.

2.22    Sec. ... [216E.121] PROPERTY RIGHTS OMBUDSMAN.
2.23The Department of Agriculture shall provide a property rights ombudsman to assist
2.24landowners who may be affected by a proposed high-voltage transmission line of 100
2.25kilovolts or more, or ancillary substations, or a natural gas, petroleum, or petroleum
2.26products pipeline, or ancillary compressor stations or pump stations that require a certificate
2.27of need under chapter 216B or a site or route permit under chapter 216E. The ombudsman
2.28shall provide impartial information to landowners or others facing a potential right-of-way
2.29acquisition from a project described in this section, including, but not limited to:
2.30(1) the steps and procedures an acquiring authority must comply with in seeking to
2.31obtain a right-of-way by negotiation or eminent domain;
2.32(2) the timelines associated with various procedures under clause (1);
2.33(3) options and rights of property owners and other persons faced with a right-of-way
2.34acquisition under the law, including rights for reimbursement of costs of appraisals and
2.35relocation costs; and
3.1(4) how to find appraisers and attorneys specializing in right-of-way acquisition to
3.2assist landowners or others.
3.3The department's cost of providing a property rights ombudsman shall be reimbursed
3.4on a prorated basis by the proposers whose projects generate inquiries to the property
3.5rights ombudsman.
3.6EFFECTIVE DATE.This section is effective the day following final enactment."
3.7Renumber the sections in sequence and correct the internal references
3.8Amend the title accordingly