The Minnesota Department of Transportation has scheduled a number of listening sessions around Minnesota pertaining to ditch mowing along state highway right of ways. A law regulating ditch mowing has been on the books for quite some time but it has not been enforced. Now the Minnesota Department of Transportation is planning on enforcing the law. It is quite controversial and the Minnesota Legislature put a moratorium on requiring permits for ditch mowing until May of 2018.

I should point out all this applies only to ditches along state highways. It does not apply to county highways or township roads. Environmentalists seem to be opposed to any ditch mowing. Some farmers mow the ditches for hay. Others mow the ditches to control weeds like wild parsnip and thistles. I only have county and township roads along our land but there are 12,000 miles of state highways in Minnesota so this does affect a lot of farmers.

There are a couple of these listening sessions within reasonable driving distance. One will be November 14 in North Mankato at the South Central College and the other will be on November 16 at the Minnesota Department of Transportation Training Center in Arden Hills. Both listening sessions will be from 6:30 to 8:30 pm. farmers and land owners are encouraged to attend.