FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Jesse Cordray, Press Secretary
Contact: Josh DeFonce, Press Secretary Intern
STATEHOUSE (Jan. 27, 2020) — A bill authored by State Sen. Victoria Spartz (R-Noblesville), which would clarify existing statutes waiving the Indiana Department of Environmental Management permit requirements for local surveyors to deal with drainage issues in a prompt and efficient manner, passed the Senate last week.
Many drainage tiles were installed over 100 years ago and the issue of tile breakage is becoming more and more prevalent. Senate Bill 229 clarifies standing law and practices of the local jurisdiction for surveyors to fix issues within regulating drains. Any delays and power struggles between agencies create unnecessary costs, redundancy, inefficiencies and ultimately burdens to the taxpayers.
“There are still plenty of state and federal regulations on the books dealing with wetlands, but even the federal government under the Clean Water Act exempts maintenance of drainage ditches from permitting. The misapplication of the statutes by the IDEM is costing thousands of dollars to local communities, like Hamilton County, which is an unnecessary and burdensome power grab by the state agency,” Spartz said. “This bill benefits not just local government, landowners and farmers, but all taxpayers, since all bureaucracy costs are ultimately passed on to all taxpayers.”
If passed and signed into law, SB 229 would clarify that a permit is not required by a county surveyor from IDEM for the reconstruction or maintenance of regulated drains.
SB 229 will now move to the House of Representatives.
A high-resolution photo of State Sen. Victoria Spartz is available by clicking here.