1468.28 Violations and remedies.§ 1468.28 Violations and remedies.
(a) In the event of a violation of the agricultural land easement terms, the agricultural land easement holder will notify the landowner and the violator, if different than the landowner, and NRCS. The landowner may be given reasonable notice and, where appropriate, an opportunity to voluntarily correct the violation in accordance with the terms of the agricultural land easement.
(b) In the event that the agricultural land easement holder, or its successors or assigns, fails to enforce any of the terms of the agricultural land easement as determined by NRCS, NRCS may exercise the United States' rights to enforce the terms of the agricultural land easement through any and all authorities available under Federal or State law.
(c) Notwithstanding paragraph (a) of this section, NRCS reserves the right to enter upon and inspect the easement area if the annual monitoring report provided by the agricultural land easement holder documenting compliance with the agricultural land easement is insufficient or is not provided annually, the United States has a reasonable and articulable belief that the terms and conditions of the easement have been violated, or to remedy deficiencies or easement violations as it relates to the conservation plan in accordance with 7 CFR part 12. Prior to its inspection, NRCS will notify the agricultural land easement holder and the landowner and provide a reasonable opportunity for the agricultural land easement holder and the landowner to participate in the inspection.
(d) In the event of an emergency, the entry onto the easement area may be made at the discretion of NRCS when the actions are deemed necessary to prevent, terminate, or mitigate a potential or unaddressed violation with notification to the landowner and the agricultural land easement holder provided at the earliest practicable time. The landowner will be liable for any costs incurred by NRCS as a result of the landowner's failure to comply with the easement requirements as it relates to agricultural land easement violations.
(e) The United States will be entitled to recover any and all costs from the eligible entity, or its successors or assigns, including attorney's fees or expenses, associated with any enforcement or remedial action as it relates to the enforcement of the agricultural land easement.
(f) In instances where an easement is terminated in whole or in part, the proponent of the termination action must pay to CCC an amount determined by NRCS.
(g) If NRCS exercises its rights identified under an agricultural land easement NRCS will provide written notice to the agricultural land easement holder at their last-known address. The notice will set forth the nature of the noncompliance by the agricultural land easement holder, or its successors or assigns, and provide a 180-day period to cure. If the agricultural land easement holder fails to cure within the 180-day period, NRCS will take the action specified under the notice. NRCS reserves the right to decline to provide a period to cure if NRCS determines that imminent harm may result to the conservation values or other interest in land that it seeks to protect.[85 FR 571, Jan. 6, 2020, as amended at 86 FR 8131, Feb. 4, 2021]