Minnesota Department of Transportation

511 Travel Info

Mowing and Haying

Mowing and haying in highway right of way

State law requires MnDOT to manage right of way mowing, which includes cutting in advance of haying. As a result, MnDOT adopted a statewide standard for mowing and haying in the right of way and has developed a user-friendly permit application that can be found here. Permits are issued on a first come first serve basis. However, landowners who want to mow on right of way adjacent to their property should make sure their permit application is received by MnDOT before the last day of February for first consideration. Beginning March 1, all others may apply for permits for any portion of the state right of way.

The permit provides information on when and where mowing and haying can occur, safety measures required and how long hay can be left in the right of way. MnDOT has partnered with the Minnesota Department of Public Safety to enforce the permit requirement. By state law, it is a misdemeanor to mow on state highway right of way without a permit.

The 2017 Minnesota Legislature established a moratorium on enforcing permits to mow or bale hay in the right-of-way of a trunk highway. Additionally, the Legislature required the Commissioner of Transportation to recommend to the legislature the establishment of a permit or notification system to mow or hay in the trunk highway right-of-way.

To help us develop our recommendation, we want to hear from you!

MnDOT has developed a stakeholder group to review the challenges with administering this law as it relates to the various interests. While the group is limited in size, MnDOT wants to hear from as many people as possible. To do this, MnDOT is organizing several informational listening sessions across the state to provide an opportunity for people to be heard.

These informational listening sessions are being presented in October and November this year at several locations within the state. The locations can be found by visiting the Listening Sessions page.

What if you cannot attend one of the meetings?

MnDOT still would like to hear from you. If you are not able to attend the meetings but would like to provide us with suggestions to consider on the permitting process, you can use the comment form and submit your feedback anytime.