Thursday, April 25, 2013

DNR reminds landowners to identify property lines prior to starting construction projects

The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR) reminds homeowners and landowners living adjacent to state of Minnesota-owned lands to learn where their personal property lines are located before starting construction projects this spring.

State law prohibits construction on state land. "Any type of residential construction, such as homes, garages, drain fields, septic tanks, driveways or additional out-buildings, prohibits the use of these lands by the rest of the public," said Dave Schuller, DNR statewide lands coordinator.

If a construction project occurs on state-owned land, the landowner may be charged with trespass violations. If there is construction on state lands, the project is generally removed and the land is restored at the private landowner's expense.

To avoid this, the DNR urges people to do their homework before building near any publicly-owned land. Homeowners should contact their local zoning office to make sure they are in compliance with any property line setbacks.

Those who suspect they may have already constructed buildings or encroached on lands owned by the state of Minnesota should contact a local DNR area office.