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Four E-Posting Bills in the ND Legislature this Week 1/11/2021


Three E-posting bills came out on the Interim Committee on Access. A fourth bill has been filed that was worked on after the Interim Committee was over. They will be heard by the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee on Thursday at 8:30am.


The first bill, SB 2036, continues the E-posting study for two more years and expands the study to all 53 counties. It also continues to look at access issues facing hunters, anglers, and trappers. The full bill text can be read here. NDWF supports the access study, the bill may need to be edited to reflect other legislation that is passed.


The second bill, SB 2037, relates to criminal trespass and electronic posting and provides a penalty. This bill changes criminal trespass law to remove the requirement that a posted sign needs to have a legible name on the sign, makes adds fenced property (no definition of a fence) to be posted for criminal and hunting trespass. Changes hunting trespass posted law to remove the requirement for a name to appear on the sign. Allows for electronic posting as follows: “Designate the land as posted or closed to hunting in an online database or other electronic application maintained or authorized by the state and available to the public which identifies whether land is available to hunters”. Requires that electronically posted land to be identified and made available to hunters and anglers via electronic devices.. The full bill text can be read here. NDWF opposes this bill as written.


The third bill, SB 2038, relates to electronic posting of private land to prohibit hunting; and provides a penalty. This bill does not change the need for a name to appear on a posted sign and allows for electronic posting to be used in addition to physical signs (no change to law for physical signs) for hunting as follows: “Designate the land as posted or closed to hunting in an online database or other electronic application maintained or authorized by the state and available to the public which identifies whether land is available to hunters”. Requires that electronically posted land to be identified and made available to hunters and anglers via electronic devices. The full bill text can be read here.

NDWF supports this bill as written.


The fourth bill, SB 2144, relates to criminal trespass and electronic posting; and provides a penalty. This bill does not change current law for the name to appear on a posted sign for criminal or hunting trespass. Defines a fence and provides for an exemption for licensed hunters and angler to access fenced land unless physically or electronically posted for no hunting. Allows for electronic posting to be used in addition to physical signs (no change to law for physical signs) under the hunting section (Section 2) as follows: “Designate the land as posted or closed to hunting in an online database or other electronic application maintained or authorized by the state and available to the public which identifies whether land is available to hunters”. Requires that electronically posted land to be identified and made available to hunters and anglers via electronic devices. The full bill text can be read here.

NDWF supports this bill as written.


Are any of the above bills perfect? No, bills seldom are. SB 2144 is a better alternative than a full no-trespass law in ND. Sportsmen and women who wish to hunt or fish on private land without permission will have to do a little research beforehand, but if the land is unposted physically or electronically, they can still access it. Landowners that don’t want to post and make their land available to hunting or fishing, do not have to do anything if SB2144 passes.


SB2144 provides added protection for criminal trespass for landowners/operators for fenced land. Landowners groups have always said no-trespass legislation is not about hunting, it is about private landowner rights. This bill follows those guidelines by allowing for an exemption for hunting and angling on fenced land.



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