(70 ILCS 405/23) (from Ch. 5, par. 128)
    Sec. 23. Adoption of land-use regulations. The directors of any district shall have authority to formulate regulations governing the use of lands within the district in the interest of conserving soil, soil resources, water and water resources and preventing and controlling soil erosion and erosion, floodwater and sediment damages. The directors shall conduct such public meetings and public hearings upon tentative regulations as may be necessary to assist them in this work. The directors shall not have authority to enact such land-use regulations into law until after they shall have caused due notice to be given of their intention to conduct a referendum for submission of such regulations to the land owners within the boundaries of the district for their approval or disapproval of such proposed regulations, shall have held such referendum, and shall have considered the result of such referendum. The proposed regulations shall be embodied in a proposed ordinance. Copies of such proposed ordinance shall be filed with the Department for an expression of opinion. The opinion of the Department and any statement it may issue with reference thereto shall be made known to the owners in such district at least 10 days prior to the date of any referendum thereon. Copies of such proposed ordinance shall be available for distribution among, and inspection by owners and occupiers of land in the district during the period between publications of such notice and the date of the referendum. The notices of the referendum shall recite the contents of such proposed ordinance and shall state where copies of such proposed ordinance may be examined or obtained. The question shall be submitted by ballots, upon which the words "For approval of proposed ordinance No....., prescribing land-use regulations for conservation of soil and water and prevention of erosion" and "Against approval of proposed ordinance No....., prescribing land-use regulations for conservation of soil and water and prevention of erosion" shall appear, with a square before each proposition and a direction to insert an X mark in the square before one or the other of those propositions. A summary or digest of the provisions of the proposed ordinance shall also appear on such ballots. The directors shall supervise such referendum, shall prescribe appropriate regulations governing the conduct thereof, and shall publish the result thereof. All the owners of land within the district shall be eligible to vote in such referendum and each shall have one vote. Such vote may be cast in person or by absentee ballot. No informalities in the conduct of such referendum or in any matters relating thereto shall invalidate such referendum or the result thereof if notice thereof shall have been given substantially as herein provided and such referendum shall have been fairly conducted.
    The directors shall not have authority to enact such proposed ordinance into law unless at least three-fourths of the owners of land voting in such referendum shall vote in such referendum for approval of the proposed ordinance. The approval of the proposed ordinance by three-fourths of the land owners voting on the proposition shall not be deemed to require the directors to enact such proposed ordinance into law. Land-use regulations prescribed in ordinances adopted pursuant to this Section by the directors of any district shall have the force and effect of law in the district and shall be binding and obligatory upon all owners of lands within such district.
    Any owner of land within such district may at any time file a petition with the directors asking that any or all of the land-use regulations prescribed in any ordinance adopted by the directors under this Section shall be amended, supplemented, or repealed. Land-use regulations prescribed in any ordinance adopted pursuant to this Section shall not be amended, supplemented, or repealed except in accordance with the procedure prescribed in this Section for adoption of land-use regulations. Referenda on adoption, amendment, supplementation, or repeal of land-use regulations shall not be held more often than once in 6 months.
    The regulations to be adopted by the directors under this Section may include:
        1. Provisions requiring the carrying out of necessary
engineering operations, including the construction of terraces, terrace outlets, check dams, dikes, ponds, ditches, and other necessary structures.
        2. Provisions requiring observation of particular
methods of cultivation including contour cultivating, contour furrowing, strip cropping, seeding and planting of lands to water-conserving and erosion-preventing plants, trees, grasses, forestation and reforestation.
        3. Provisions requiring the permanent retirement from
cultivation of highly erosive areas or of areas on which erosion cannot be adequately controlled if cultivation is carried on.
        4. Provisions for such other means, measures,
operations and programs as may assist conservation of soil and water resources and prevent or control soil erosion in the district.
        5. Provisions prohibiting the clearcutting of trees
within 30 feet of any navigable waters, except for trees that are included in a forestry management plan approved by the Division of Forest Resources of the Department of Natural Resources. However, these provisions shall not prohibit clearcutting incidental to any project, activity or program that has been permitted, licensed, certified or approved by an agency of federal, State or local government. For the purpose of this item 5, "navigable waters" means public waters that are usable for water commerce.
    However, these provisions shall not prohibit a public utility from maintaining its transmission facilities and rights of way.
    The regulations shall be uniform throughout the territory comprised within the district except that the directors may classify the lands within the district with reference to such factors as soil type, degree of slope, degree of erosion threatened or existing, cropping and tillage practices in use, and other relevant factors, and may provide regulations varying with the type or class of land affected, but uniform as to all lands within each class or type. Copies of land-use regulations adopted under this Section shall be printed and made available to all owners and occupiers of lands lying within the district.
    No authority exercised by or procedure authorized by a district pursuant to this Section 23 imposes any restriction or mandate on land use practices and other policies of municipalities with respect to land located in that municipality, unless the corporate authorities of that municipality authorize by resolution the application of that district's land use regulations within the municipality's corporate limits.
(Source: P.A. 91-327, eff. 1-1-00.)