The purpose of this compact is to study the feasibility of rapid rail transit service between the states of Mississippi and Louisiana and to establish a joint interstate commission to assist in this effort.
This compact shall become effective immediately as to the states ratifying it whenever the states of Louisiana and Mississippi have ratified it and Congress has given consent thereto. Any state not mentioned in this article which is contiguous with any member state may become a party to this compact, subject to approval by the legislature of each of the member states.
The states which are parties to this compact (hereinafter referred to as "party states") do hereby establish and create a joint agency which shall be known as the Mississippi-Louisiana Rapid Rail Transit Commission (hereinafter referred to as the "commission"). The membership of such commission shall consist of the governor of each party state, one (1) representative each from the Mississippi Energy and Transportation Board, or its successor, and the office of aviation and public transportation of the Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development, or its successor, five (5) other citizens of each party state, to be appointed by the governor thereof. The appointive members of the commission shall serve for terms of four (4) years each. Vacancies on the commission shall be filled by appointment by the governor for the unexpired portion of the term. The members of the commission shall not be compensated for service on the commission, but each of the appointed members shall be entitled to actual and reasonable expenses incurred in attending meetings, or incurred otherwise in the performance of his duties as a member of the commission. The members of the commission shall hold regular quarterly meetings and such special meetings as its business may require. They shall choose annually a chairman and vice chairman from among their members, and the chairmanship shall rotate each year among the party states in order of their acceptance of this compact. The commission shall adopt rules and regulations for the transaction of its business and a record shall be kept of all its business. It shall be the duty of the commission to study the feasibility of providing interstate rapid rail transit service between the party states. Toward this end, the commission shall have power to hold hearings; to conduct studies and surveys of all problems, benefits and other matters associated with such service, and to make reports thereon; to acquire, by gift, grant or otherwise, from local, state, federal or private sources such money or property as may be provided for the proper performance of their function, and to hold and dispose of same; to cooperate with other public or private groups, whether local, state, regional or national, having an interest in such service; to formulate and execute plans and policies for emphasizing the purpose of this compact before the Congress of the United States and other appropriate officers and agencies of the United States; and to exercise such other powers as may be appropriate to enable it to accomplish its functions and duties and to carry out the purposes of this compact.
Each party state agrees that its legislature may, in its discretion, from time to time make available and pay over to the commission funds for the establishment and operation of the commission. The contribution of each party state shall be in equal amounts, if possible, but nothing in this article shall be construed as binding the legislature of either state to make an appropriation of a set amount of funds at any particular time.
Nothing in this compact shall be construed so as to conflict with any existing statute, or to limit the powers of any party state, or to repeal or prevent legislation, or to affect any existing or future cooperative arrangement or relationship between any federal agency and a party state.
- This compact shall continue in force and remain binding upon each party state until the legislature or governor of each or either state takes action to withdraw therefrom. However, any such withdrawal shall not become effective until six (6) months after the date of the action taken by the legislature or governor. Notice of such action shall be given to the other party state or states by the secretary of state of the party state which takes such action.
- There is hereby granted to the governor, to the members of the commission for Louisiana, and to the compact administrator all the powers provided for in the compact and in this section. All officers of the state of Mississippi are hereby authorized and directed to do all things falling within their respective jurisdictions which are necessary or incidental to carrying out the purpose of the compact.