2013 ORS § 561.400¹
Natural Resources Division
  • duties
  • insurance for soil and water conservation districts

(1) There is established within the State Department of Agriculture a Natural Resources Division which shall have the duties and powers conferred by subsection (2) of this section, by ORS 568.210 (Definitions for ORS 568.210 to 568.808 and 568.900 to 568.933) to 568.808 (Taxing district to file legal description and map) and 568.900 (Definitions for ORS 568.900 to 568.933) to 568.933 (Civil penalties) and by the Director of Agriculture. The administrator of the division shall be appointed by the director under ORS 561.050 (Division chiefs) after consultation with the Soil and Water Conservation Commission.

(2) In addition to other duties and powers, the division is authorized:

(a) To review and approve or disapprove all projects, practices, budgets, contracts or regulations of soil and water conservation districts organized under ORS 568.300 (Petition for formation of district) to 568.790 (County funds for personnel and other uses);

(b) To keep the directors of the soil and water conservation districts informed of the activities and experiences of other districts, to assist in the interchange of advice and information among the districts, and to promote cooperation among the districts;

(c) To coordinate, as much as possible, the various programs of the soil and water conservation districts;

(d) To solicit the cooperation and assistance of any department or agency of the United States or other department or agency of this state;

(e) To disseminate information concerning the activities and programs of soil and water conservation districts and encourage formation of such districts in areas where they would be desirable and feasible;

(f) To receive, from any source, materials, machinery and equipment and to transfer such to any soil and water conservation district under terms and conditions deemed appropriate, including payment by the district for costs of delivery or use;

(g) To receive from any public or private source, donations, gifts and grants for the furtherance of soil and water conservation, the provisions of ORS 568.225 (Policy) or the protection of natural resources affecting agriculture, which moneys are continuously appropriated to the department for the administration of the Natural Resources Division and functions related thereto and for furnishing support and financial assistance for the projects and activities of soil and water conservation districts or other projects and activities relating to natural resources affecting agriculture or consistent with ORS 568.225 (Policy);

(h) To establish the procedures for developing and implementing extended stream bank erosion plans under ORS 561.403 (Extended stream bank erosion plans);

(i) To review and evaluate documents and proposals of the federal government, agencies of the State of Oregon, counties, cities, other governmental bodies or subdivisions thereof relating to natural resources affecting agriculture or consistent with ORS 568.225 (Policy); and

(j) To conduct research in and assist in the development of agricultural management procedures and practices relating to natural resources for the prevention of soil erosion, water contamination and air pollution or for the enhancement of water quality and quantity and air quality.

(3) The administrator of the division shall coordinate any activities of the Natural Resources Division related to a watershed enhancement project approved by the Oregon Watershed Enhancement Board under ORS 541.932 (Watershed enhancement project assistance) with activities of other cooperating state and federal agencies participating in the project.

(4) In addition to or in lieu of the coverage provided pursuant to ORS 30.282 (Local public body insurance) (4), the Oregon Department of Administrative Services may provide to soil and water conservation districts and their officers, employees and agents acting within the scope of their employment or duties, protection against liability as part of the insurance provided to the State Department of Agriculture pursuant to ORS 278.120 (Claims management) to 278.215 (Uninsured motorist coverage requirements). The Oregon Department of Administrative Services shall determine any additional contributions to be apportioned to the State Department of Agriculture under ORS 278.110 for extending insurance to soil and water conservation districts, and the State Department of Agriculture shall pay the assessments from such moneys as may be available therefor. [1981 c.92 §3; 1985 c.40 §4; 1985 c.667 §4; 1987 c.158 §119; 1987 c.734 §17; 1989 c.343 §1; 2005 c.175 §5; 2007 c.799 §6]