Legal-Ease: Alternative energy leases

Lee asks people to consider seven different aspects when considering a potential alternative energy lease. 

First, recognize that these leases can be confusing, so it’s important to seek help from a professional. Second, be sure that the lease specifies the geographic scope. Third, understand the periods of time that are included in the lease. 

Legal-Ease: Spring cleaning and trash fires

As spring cleaning is upon us, many in our region will want to burn combustible trash outside. In the state of Ohio, no burning is allowed between 6 a.m. and 6 p.m. in the months of March, April, May, October and November unless the fire is in a plowed field. These months of the year are particularly dangerous for outdoor fires. 

Ohio has a number of laws in place for burning outside, and municipalities and counties often regulate fires as well. 

Legal-Ease: Will Lake Erie sue you?

The residents of the city of Toledo voted that Lake Erie and its watershed, which includes Allen County and any county adjacent to Allen County, can sue any business or government that causes harm to Lake Erie or fails to undertake protective action of Lake Erie. This law is largely symbolic designed to show that Toledo wants less pollution in Lake Erie and is not likely to be enforced. 

If LEBOR were to actually be enforced, it could immediately affect all businesses in northwest Ohio. 

West Central Ohio Land Conservancy discuss easement benefits

Lee recently had the opportunity to discuss issues regarding farmland preservation as the keynote speaker during the West Central Ohio Conservancy 13th annual meeting. 

The West Central Ohio Land Conservancy is a non-profit, volunteer organization that helps land owners preserve and protect their land. 

Legal-Ease: Passing farm machinery on the road

Typically within seven days of suitable weather, agricultural experts expect that up to 75 percent of the crops in our region will be planted. Which means that there is likely to be a lot of farm equipment on the roads as the weather is finally suitable for planting. 

Since roads in the area are often narrow, sometimes it can be confusing on the logistics of passing farm machinery on the road. 

Fortunately, Ohio law offers guidance on passing farm machinery on the road. 

Legal-Ease: FFA and Congressional charters

FFA, formerly known as Future Farmers of America, is a student agricultural organization. This is National FFA Week, and FFA is a required part of formal agriculture education programs in schools. 

FFA is one of only a few Congressionally chartered agricultural organizations in the country. Congressional Charters of nonprofit organizations recognize that the organizations are legitimate and add value to American life. 

Legal-Ease: Saving money and natural resources

Over the last few decades, conservation of our natural resources has become more popular. Even the most cynical people are beginning to accept that human activity is having at least some impact on the planet. 

The government program over the last few decades that most encouraged natural resource conservation in rural areas has been the Conservation Reserve Program. The CRP is administered by the USDA. 

Land enrolled in CRP or similar government programs results in government payments in exchange for landowners agreeing to not commercial farm or develop specific land. 

Legal-Ease: Farmland came with my new house, now what?

When you purchase a house or building lot that’s not connected to a public septic/sanitary sewer system, you must own additional acreage beyond the building footprint so that sewage can be treated onsite. So when someone purchases a new home, they may find themselves with additional acres of farmland or woods. 

Legal-Ease: Four questions on easements

The law requires that each and every parcel of land has access to a public roadway. For owners of a landlocked parcel, this may require a purchase of an easement from an adjoining landowner. Easements allow for the use of property without owning that property. 

Typically, easement concerns break down into four different questions. 

Legal-Ease: Herbicide drifting re-emerges as practical and legal issue

Herbicides have helped farmers control weeds for decades. Twenty years ago Monsanto created genetically modified seed that would grow into plants that wouldn’t die if they were sprayed with glyphosate, which is a chemical that will kill all living plants. This technology is referred to as “Roundup Ready,” and it created some of America’s first weed-free farms.