It is agreed between the signatory states that the provisions of this compact shall apply to streams, ponds and lakes which are contiguous to two or more signatory states or which flow through two or more signatory states or which have a tributary contiguous to two or more signatory states or flowing through two or more signatory states, and also shall apply to tidal waters ebbing and flowing past the boundaries of two states.
There is hereby created the New England Interstate Water Pollution Control Commission (hereinafter referred to as the commission) which shall be a body corporate and politic, having the powers, duties and jurisdiction herein enumerated and such other and additional powers as shall be conferred upon it by the act or acts of a signatory state concurred in by the others.
The commission shall consist of five commissioners from each signatory state, each of whom shall be a resident voter of the state from which he is appointed. The commissioners shall be chosen in the manner and for the terms provided by law of the state from which they shall be appointed. For each state there shall be on the commission a member representing the state health department, a member representing the state water pollution control board (if such exists), and, except where a state in its enabling legislation decides that the best interests of the state will be otherwise served, a member representing municipal interests, a member representing industrial interests, and a member representing an agency acting for fisheries or conservation.
The commission shall annually elect from its members a chairman and vice chairman and shall appoint and at its pleasure remove or discharge such officers. It may appoint and employ a secretary who shall be a professional engineer versed in water pollution and may employ such stenographic or clerical employees as shall be necessary, and at its pleasure remove or discharge such employees. It shall adopt a seal and suitable bylaws and shall promulgate rules and regulations for its management and control. It may maintain an office for the transaction of its business and may meet at any time or place within the signatory states. Meetings shall be held at least twice each year. A majority of the members shall constitute a quorum for the transaction of its business but no action of the commission imposing any obligation on any signatory state or on any municipal agency or subdivision thereof or on any person, firm or corporation therein shall be binding unless a majority of the members from such signatory state shall have voted in favor thereof. Where meetings are planned to discuss matters relevant to problems of water pollution control affecting only certain of the signatory states, the commission may vote to authorize special meetings of the commissioners of the states especially concerned. The commission shall keep accurate accounts of all receipts and disbursements and shall make an annual report to the governor and the legislature of each signatory state setting forth in detail the operations and transactions conducted by it pursuant to this compact, and shall make recommendations for any legislative action deemed by it advisable, including amendments to the statutes of the signatory states which may be necessary to carry out the intent and purpose of this compact. The commission shall not incur any obligations for salaries, office, administrative, traveling or other expenses prior to the allotment of funds by the signatory states adequate to meet the same; nor shall the commission pledge the credit of any of the signatory states. Each signatory state reserves the right to provide hereafter by law for the examination and audit of the accounts of the commission. The commission shall appoint a treasurer who may be a member of the commission, and disbursements by the commission shall be valid only when authorized by the commission and when vouchers therefore have been signed by custodian of the records of the commission with authority to attest to and certify such records or copies thereof.
It is recognized, owing to such variable factors as location, size, character and flow and the many varied uses of the waters subject to the terms of this compact, that no single standard of sewage and waste treatment and no single standard of quality of receiving waters is practical and that the degree of treatment of sewage and industrial wastes should take into account the classification of the receiving waters according to present and proposed highest use, such as for drinking water supply, industrial and agricultural uses, bathing and other recreational purposes, maintenance and propagation of fish life, shellfish culture, navigation and disposal of wastes.
The commission shall establish reasonable physical, chemical and bacteriological standards of water quality satisfactory for various classifications of use. It is agreed that each of the signatory states through appropriate agencies will prepare a classification of its interstate waters in entirety or by portions according to present and proposed highest use and for this purpose technical experts employed by state departments of health and state water pollution control agencies are authorized to confer on questions relating to classification of interstate waters affecting two or more states. Each signatory state agrees to submit its classification of its interstate waters to the commission for approval. It is agreed that after such approval all signatory states through their appropriate state health departments and water pollution control agencies will work to establish programs of treatment of sewage and industrial wastes which will meet standards established by the commission for classified waters. The commission may from time to time make such changes in definitions of classifications and in standards as may be required by changed conditions or as may be necessary for uniformity.
Each of the signatory states pledges to provide for the abatement of existing pollution and for the control of future pollution of interstate inland and tidal waters as described in Article I, and to put and maintain the waters thereof in a satisfactory condition consistent with the highest classified use of each body of water.
Nothing in this compact shall be construed to repeal or prevent the enactment of any legislation or prevent the enforcement of any requirement by any signatory state imposing any additional condition or restriction to further lessen the pollution of waters within its jurisdiction. Nothing herein contained shall affect or abate any action now pending brought by any governmental board or body created under any of the signatory states.
The signatory states agree to appropriate for the salaries, office, administrative, travel and other expenses such sum or sums as shall be recommended by the commission. The commonwealth of Massachusetts obligates itself only to the extent of sixty-five hundred dollars in any one year, the state of Connecticut only to the extent of three thousand dollars in any one year, the state of Rhode Island only to the extent of fifteen hundred dollars in any one year, and the states of New Hampshire, Maine, and Vermont each only to the extent of one thousand dollars in any one year.
Should any part of this compact be held to be contrary to the constitution of any signatory state or of the United States, all other parts thereof shall continue to be in full force and effect.
The commission is authorized to discuss with appropriate state agencies in New York state questions of pollution of waters which flow into the New England area from New York state or vice versa and to further the establishment of agreements on pollution abatement to promote the interests of the New York and New England areas.
Whenever the commission by majority vote of the members of each signatory state shall have given its approval and the state of New York shall have taken the necessary action to do so, the state of New York shall be a party to this compact for the purpose of controlling and abating the pollution of waterways common to New York and the New England states signatory to this compact but excluding the waters under the jurisdiction of the Interstate Environmental Commission (New York, New Jersey and Connecticut).
This compact shall become effective immediately upon the adoption of the compact by any two contiguous states of New England but only in so far as applies to those states and upon approval by Federal law. Thereafter upon ratification by other contiguous states, it shall also become effective as to those states.
- The State of Connecticut reaffirms its support of the cooperative approach to the abatement and control of water pollution as embodied in the New England Interstate Water Pollution Control Compact. In view of the increases in population concentrations, the growing need of industry and agriculture for water of reasonable quality, and the quality requirements of water based recreation and other uses, the New England Interstate Water Pollution Control Commission shall develop and maintain its programs, including research on water quality problems, at such levels, including, to the extent necessary, levels above those originally provided when this state first enacted the compact, as may be appropriate.
- In addition to the minimal personnel authorizations contained in Article IV, the commission may employ such engineering, technical and other professional, secretarial and clerical personnel as the proper administration and functioning of the commission may require.
- The State of Connecticut hereby concurs in the conferring of any powers or duties on the New England Interstate Water Pollution Control Commission by other states, in addition to those conferred by provision of the New England Interstate Water Pollution Control Compact. This concurrence is pursuant to Article II of said compact. This concurrence is subject to the following limitations:
- (a) Unless this state specifically confers a power or duty on the commission, other than one conferred by the compact itself, no financial or other burden or duties shall be placed upon this state, or any agency, officer or subdivision thereof by reason of the conferring or exercise of the power or duty. At any time the Governor, the Attorney General or the Auditors of Public Accounts shall have the power to make inquiry of the commission and to examine its books and records in order to ascertain the state of compliance with this section.
- (b) The rights, privileges and responsibilities of this state with respect to the New England Interstate Water Pollution Control Compact and the commission established thereby shall not be limited or impaired.
- (c) The commission shall include in its annual report to the Governor and the legislature of this state a full account of any additional powers or duties administered by it.
- The New England Interstate Water Pollution Control Commission, hereinafter called "the commission," may develop standards for the training, educational and experience requirements for operating personnel necessary to the proper operation of sewage and other waste treatment plants. The commission may administer programs of training and certification for such personnel, and may make classifications thereof. Any certificate issued by the commission shall be accepted by this state and all agencies and subdivisions thereof as conclusive evidence that the holder has the training, education and experience necessary for certification for the class of position or responsibility described therein. The state department of health may impose and administer any other requirements for certification within any applicable provisions of law, but it shall not reexamine or reinvestigate the applicant for a certificate with respect to his training, education or experience qualifications. The commission shall keep a record of all certificates issued by it, and in response to any inquiry concerning such a certificate, the commission shall inform the inquirer concerning its issuance and validity. The commission shall annul any certificate issued by it, if the commission finds that the certificate was obtained by misrepresentation of any material fact relating to the education, training or experience of the applicant. Such annulment shall be pursuant to rules and regulations of the commission which shall afford due notice to the certificate holder and an opportunity to present relevant evidence for consideration by the commission. Nothing contained in this section shall limit or abridge the authority of the commission to revise its standards and to issue new or additional certificates. In any such case the state department of health may require an applicant for a certificate to present a certificate or certificates which evidence training, education and experience meeting the current standards of the commission. Certificates issued by the commission shall be recognized and given in connection with personnel employed in or having responsibilities for plants discharging into any waters of this state. Nothing in this section shall be construed to require any person to have a certificate in order to be employed in the operation of a sewage or other waste treatment plant. Such requirements, if any, shall be as set forth in or pursuant to other laws of this state, provided that in any case where a certificate is required, an appropriate certificate issued by the commission shall be accepted in lieu of any certificate otherwise required. To the extent that the authority conferred upon the commission by this section is not otherwise exercisable by the commission under the provisions of the New England Interstate Water Pollution Control Compact, the commission shall not require the financial or other support of the program or programs authorized hereby by any state not having enacted legislation substantially similar to this section.
- (a) The New England Interstate Water Pollution Control Commission, in cooperation with the State of Connecticut and such other state signatory to the New England Interstate Water Pollution Control Compact as may participate in such work, shall establish and maintain a water quality sampling and testing network. The network shall, to the fullest extent practicable, rely upon the sampling and testing programs of this state, and such other participating states, and upon information available from agencies of the federal government, and shall not duplicate any of their activities. However, if the sampling and testing programs of this state and other states, and the information available from agencies of the federal government are insufficient to provide the commission with records of water quality adequate for its needs, the commission may supplement the sampling and testing otherwise available to it.
- (b) Sampling pursuant to this section shall be at points at or near the places where waters cross the boundary of this state, and the samples shall be tested in order to determine their quality. The sampling and testing provided for herein shall be scheduled by the commission or in accordance with its requests, and shall include such factors or elements as the commission shall request. Any sampling and testing done by the Commissioner of Environmental Protection of this state as part of the activities of the commission's network shall be reported fully and promptly by such agency to the commission together with the results thereof.
- (a) If the commission ascertains that particular waters at or near a boundary of this state do not comply with the standards of the commission made pursuant to Article V of the New England Interstate Water Pollution Control Compact, or are not otherwise of a quality complying with state law, the commission shall inform the Commissioner of Environmental Protection of this state and of any other state concerned and shall afford such agencies an opportunity to verify, explain, supplement or correct the information in the possession of the commission and if the facts warrant to take or secure the taking of any necessary remedial action.
- (b) If such remedial action is not taken or secured in timely fashion, the commission may hold a public hearing on due notice as provided in its rules and regulations in order to ascertain all the relevant facts and circumstances.
- (c) Following public hearing pursuant to subsection (b), the commission may issue an order directed to the source or sources of waste discharge causing or contributing to the deteriorated water quality. Such order or orders may require reduction or cessation of waste discharges or the improvement of their quality. No order of the commission pursuant to this subsection shall be valid, unless supported by substantial evidence adduced at the public hearing.
- (d) An order of the commission made pursuant to subsection (b) shall prescribe the date or dates by which discharges of waste are to be reduced, discontinued or treated, and may contain timetables or schedules for specific steps to be taken in order to comply therewith.
- (e) An order of the commission made pursuant to this section may be enforced in any court of competent jurisdiction. Proceedings shall be only on the record made before the commission.
- (f) An order of the commission made pursuant to this section may be appealed to any court of competent jurisdiction within thirty days after issuance. Proceedings shall be only on the record made before the commission.
Unless otherwise conferred by law the commission shall not have power to issue permits or licenses in connection with the discharge or treatment of wastes, or pass upon plans or specifications for particular waste treatment or collection equipment or facilities.