Summary of the Truly Agreed Version of the Bill

HCS SB 187 -- NUISANCE ACTIONS

This bill changes the laws regarding county nuisance abatement
ordinances, junkyards, and private nuisance actions.  In its main
provisions, the bill:

(1)  Adds the counties of Andrew, Buchanan, Cass, Dade, Jasper,
Livingston, and Newton to the list of counties authorized to
enact nuisance abatement ordinances regarding the condition of
any lot or land in residential subdivisions or districts which
may endanger public safety or which is unhealthy or unsafe and is
declared to be a public nuisance;

(2)  Specifies that the provisions of the bill do not authorize a
county to enact nuisance abatement ordinances that provide for
the abatement of any condition relating to agricultural
structures or operations including, but not limited to, the
raising of livestock or row crops and prohibits any county of the
first, second, third, or fourth classification from having the
power to adopt any ordinance, resolution, or regulation governing
any railroad company regulated by the Federal Railroad
Administration;

(3)  Changes the penalty for a screening violation by a junkyard
located within 200 feet of a state or county road by making a
first violation a class C misdemeanor and a second or subsequent
violation a class A misdemeanor.  In addition to the penalties, a
violator must be ordered to remove the junk or build a fence to
fully screen the junk from public view.  These provisions will
not apply to a junkyard located in any incorporated town,
village, or city;

(4)  Specifies that the exclusive compensatory damages that may
be awarded to a claimant for a private nuisance originating from
property primarily used for crop or animal production purposes
will be as follows:

(a)  For a permanent nuisance, compensatory damages must be
measured by the reduction in the fair market value of the
claimant's property caused by the nuisance not to exceed the fair
market value of the property;

(b)  For a temporary nuisance, compensatory damages must be
measured by the reduction in the fair rental value of the
claimant's property caused by the nuisance; and

(c)  For a nuisance that has been shown by objective and
documented evidence to have caused a medical condition to the
claimant, compensatory damages arising from the medical condition
may be awarded in addition to the aforementioned damages;

(5)  Specifies that concerning a private nuisance where the
alleged nuisance originates from property primarily used for crop
or animal production purposes, if a claimant or his or her
successor with ownership interest brings any subsequent claim
against the same defendant or his or her successors for a
temporary nuisance related to a similar activity or use of
property and the activity or use is deemed a nuisance, the
activity or use of property at issue must be considered a
permanent nuisance and the claimant and his or her successors
must be limited to and bound by the remedies available for a
permanent nuisance;

(6)  Specifies that if a defendant in a private nuisance case
where the alleged nuisance is from property used for crop or
animal production purposes demonstrates a good faith effort to
abate the condition determined to be a nuisance, the nuisance is
to be deemed to be not capable of abatement.  Substantial
compliance with a court order regarding the property will
constitute a good faith effort;

(7)  Specifies that for a private nuisance where the alleged
nuisance originates from property primarily used for crop or
animal production purposes, no person will have standing to bring
an action for a private nuisance unless the person has an
ownership interest in the property alleged to be affected by the
nuisance;

(8)  Specifies that a person is not prohibited from recovering
damages for:

(a)  Annoyance, discomfort, sickness, or emotional distress if
the damages are awarded on the basis of a cause of action
independent of a claim of nuisance; or

(b)  Crop destruction, crop damage, contamination of the seed
supply, or a reduction of crop value resulting from contamination
of the seed or grain supply, herbicide drift, or other reduction
of crop value; and

(9)  Requires a copy of the final judgment in any action alleging
a private nuisance to be filed with the recorder of deeds in the
county in which the judgment was issued.  The filing will operate
as notice to any purchaser of the claimant's property that the
property was related to a previous nuisance claim.

Copyright (c) Missouri House of Representatives


Missouri House of Representatives
96th General Assembly, 1st Regular Session
Last Updated August 9, 2011 at 1:30 pm