2015 ORS § 610.032¹
Refund of unexpended funds appropriated by county for predatory animal control

Any unexpended and unobligated funds appropriated by a county court or board of county commissioners for the destruction, eradication or control of predatory animals under ORS 610.015 (County appropriations for destruction of predatory animals) or 610.025 (County appropriations matching state funds for control and eradication of predatory animals) may be refunded if the State Department of Agriculture finds that such funds are not necessary to carry out ORS 610.002 (Predatory animals defined) to 610.040 (Money from sale of skins) and 610.105 (Authority to control noxious rodents or predatory animals). [1959 c.541 §2; 1981 c.95 §3]

Note: Sections 1 to 8, chapter 650, Oregon Laws 2015, provide:

Sec. 1. As used in sections 1 to 7 of this 2015 Act:

(1) Agricultural land means land used for the production of livestock for commercial sale or land that is cultivated, planted or irrigated for the production of domestic crops.

(2) Eligible land means agricultural land, forestland or mixed farm and forest use land.

(3) Eligible petitioner means an owner of 10 or more acres of eligible land.

(4) Forestland has the meaning given that term in ORS 477.001 (Definitions).

(5) Livestock means cattle and other bovines, sheep, goats, horses and other domesticated animals that are raised for the purpose of providing meat or other products for human consumption or use or for other commercial sales.

(6) Predatory animals means animals listed in ORS 497.655 (Voluntary contributions) and bears, bobcats and red foxes. [2015 c.650 §1]

Sec. 2. (1)(a) Notwithstanding ORS 198.705 (Definitions for ORS 198.705 to 198.955) to 198.955 (Disposition of assets), one or more predator damage control districts may be formed within a county under this section for the purpose of funding county services to prevent, reduce and mitigate damage to property from predatory animals.

(b) The governing body of a county may adopt by ordinance or resolution criteria for formation of a predator damage control district that do not conflict with the provisions of sections 1 to 7 of this 2015 Act. The criteria shall apply to predator damage control districts formed on or after the effective date of the ordinance or resolution.

(2)(a) The formation of a predator damage control district may be initiated by a petition signed by more than 50 percent of the eligible petitioners who cumulatively own more than 50 percent by area of the eligible land within the proposed predator damage control district. All signatures must bear dates that are within a single six-month period.

(b) The petition must include:

(A) The name of the proposed district;

(B) A description of the boundaries of the proposed district;

(C) The names of the petitioners, identifying the chief petitioners, and the number of acres of eligible land that each petitioner owns;

(D) A statement that the petitioners agree to pay the reasonable charges incurred in forming the district; and

(E) A statement that explains the damage to property from predatory animals occurring within the proposed district and the need for district revenue to prevent, reduce and mitigate the damage.

(3)(a) The petition must be presented for filing to the county clerk of the county in which the proposed predator damage control district is located.

(b) Within 10 days after the date on which the petition is filed, the county clerk, in consultation with the county assessor, shall determine whether the petition meets the requirements of subsection (2) of this section. If the petition does not meet the requirements, the county clerk shall notify the chief petitioners and return the petition.

(c) If the petition meets the requirements of subsection (2) of this section, the county clerk shall file the petition, attaching to it a certificate of the county assessor stating that:

(A) The county assessor has compared the signatures of the petitioners with the appropriate records and has determined the number of eligible petitioners appearing on the petition; and

(B) The petition meets the requirements of subsection (2) of this section.

(4) After the petition has been filed, the county clerk shall set a time for a public hearing on the question of the formation of the district and, at least 15 days before the hearing and for not less than five consecutive days, shall post notice of the hearing:

(a) On the website of the county; and

(b) On or near the doors of the meeting room of the governing body of the county or on any official public bulletin board customarily used for the purpose of posting public notices pertaining to the business of the county.

(5) The governing body of the county shall hear testimony on the question of the formation of the district that is presented at the public hearing. The governing body shall make a determination whether to form the district based on the petition and the testimony. [2015 c.650 §2]

Sec. 3. (1)(a) At any time after the formation of a predator damage control district under section 2 of this 2015 Act, the advisory board appointed under section 4 of this 2015 Act may request that the governing body of the county annex to or withdraw from the district territory that is adjacent to the external boundaries of the district.

(b) The request must be accompanied by a statement of the reason for the annexation or withdrawal and the signatures of the owners of the property to be annexed or withdrawn.

(c) The governing body shall adopt the requested annexation or withdrawal of the territory if the governing body finds that the change is in the best interest of the property and the property owners in light of the purpose for which the district was formed.

(2)(a) A petition for dissolution of a predator damage control district formed under section 2 of this 2015 Act may be presented for filing with the county clerk if the petition meets the signature requirements of section 2 (2)(a) of this 2015 Act and states why the district is no longer necessary for the purpose described in section 2 (1) of this 2015 Act.

(b) The filing, notice and hearing requirements of section 2 (3) and (4) of this 2015 Act apply to a petition for dissolution of a district.

(3) The governing body of the county shall hear testimony on the question of the dissolution of the district that is presented at the public hearing. The governing body shall make a determination whether to dissolve the district based on the petition and the testimony. [2015 c.650 §3]

Sec. 4. (1)(a) Within 30 days after formation of a predator damage control district, the governing body of the county in which the district is located shall appoint an advisory board consisting of five members who reside in the district as follows:

(A) One member who owns industrial forestland located in the district;

(B) One member who owns woodlot forestland located in the district;

(C) Two members who are livestock producers in the district; and

(D) One member who owns land located in the district.

(b)(A) The term of an advisory board member is three years.

(B) Notwithstanding subparagraph (A) of this paragraph, the governing body shall assign initial terms of office to members so that the terms expire at staggered intervals.

(c) After the appointment of the first advisory board, successor advisory board members shall be appointed by majority vote of the advisory board. An advisory board member may be reappointed to successive terms of office.

(2) The advisory board:

(a) Shall conduct advisory board meetings as public meetings and meet at least annually; and

(b) May adopt rules governing the conduct of advisory board business. [2015 c.650 §4]

Sec. 5. (1) Each property tax year, the following annual charges may be incurred by a landowner with respect to land located in a predator damage control district for the purpose of paying the actual cost to the county of preventing, reducing and mitigating damage to the property from predatory animals:

(a) $1 per acre for land described in section 6 (2) and (3) of this 2015 Act.

(b) $25 for land described in section 6 (4) of this 2015 Act.

(2) Notwithstanding subsection (1) of this section, each year the advisory board of a predator damage control district shall consider whether the charges specified in subsection (1) of this section are sufficient to pay the cost to the county described in subsection (1) of this section and may recommend to the governing body of the county the charges as specified or greater or lesser amounts. The recommendation must be received by the county on or before a date prescribed by the county.

(3) The governing body of the county shall consider the recommended amounts of the charges and may:

(a) Amend the amounts to reflect the countys estimate of the cost described in subsection (1) of this section for the following property tax year; and

(b) Further increase or reduce the amounts to reflect a deficit or excess, respectively, in the amount of the charge for the current property tax year. [2015 c.650 §5]

Sec. 6. (1) An owner of land within a predator damage control district may incur, in accordance with the provisions of this section, an annual charge determined under section 5 of this 2015 Act.

(2)(a) An owner of land within a predator damage control district is presumed to have elected to incur the per acre charge determined under section 5 of this 2015 Act for land that is:

(A) Located outside of any incorporated city;

(B) Zoned for farm use, forest use or mixed farm and forest use; and

(C) On a tax lot of 10 or more acres.

(b) Notwithstanding paragraph (a) of this subsection, the owner may elect not to incur the charge with respect to land described in paragraph (a) of this subsection. An election under this paragraph shall apply:

(A) If made at the time the predator damage control district is formed, to the first property tax year in which charges may be incurred; or

(B) To the next following property tax year.

(c) An owner that has elected not to incur the charge pursuant to paragraph (b) of this subsection may subsequently elect to incur the charge for the next following property tax year by payment for that year of an amount equal to three times the amount of the charge determined under section 5 of this 2015 Act for that year.

(3) An owner of land within a predator damage control district that is on a tax lot of 10 or more acres but not otherwise described in subsection (2) of this section may elect to incur the per acre charge determined under section 5 of this 2015 Act.

(4) An owner of land within a predator damage control district that is on a tax lot of less than 10 acres may elect to incur the flat rate charge determined under section 5 of this 2015 Act.

(5) The predator damage control district advisory board shall prescribe annual deadlines by which the advisory board must receive notices of election made under subsections (2) to (4) of this section. [2015 c.650 §6]

Sec. 7. (1) Each year, on or before a date prescribed by the governing body of the county in which the district is located, the advisory board of a predator damage control district shall submit to the county a list showing for the following property tax year:

(a) The names of landowners that have elected to incur the charge under section 6 of this 2015 Act;

(b) The names of landowners that have elected to discontinue incurring the charge; and

(c) Each tax account for which a charge has been incurred, the size of the tax lot and whether the charge is the per acre charge or the flat rate charge.

(2)(a) The governing body of the county shall certify the information submitted by all advisory boards for predator damage control districts within the county and the amount of the charges determined under section 5 of this 2015 Act to the county assessor.

(b) The charges shall be entered upon the tax rolls of the county and be collected and accounted for in the same manner in which county taxes are collected and accounted for.

(c) A charge does not give rise to a lien on the property for which the charge is incurred.

(3) The county may not provide services to prevent, reduce or mitigate damage from predatory animals to property within a predator damage control district for any period during which:

(a) The owner has elected not to incur the applicable charge for the services; or

(b) The charge remains delinquent. [2015 c.650 §7]

Sec. 8. Sections 1 to 7 of this 2015 Act are repealed January 2, 2022. [2015 c.650 §8]