New England Radiological Health Protection Compact

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New England Radiological Health Protection Compact
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Formation date: 1967
Member jurisdictions: 6
Issue(s): Public health

The New England Radiological Health Protection Compact is an interstate compact among the six New England states: Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, and Vermont. The purpose of the compact is three-fold: promote the radiological health protection of citizens of the member states, provide mutual assistance in health matters, and encourage the efficient use of personnel and equipment.[1]

Governance

The compact created the New England Radiological Health Committee (NERHC). The committee is comprised of the Radiation Control Program Directors from Massachusetts, Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Rhode Island, and Connecticut; and, the Regional Radiological Representatives of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.[2]

Text of the compact

The legislature of each member state passes the laws with certain modifications, but the core of the legislation remains the same.

Article I: Purposes

The purposes of this compact are to:

  1. Promote protection. Promote the radiological health protection of the public and individuals within the party states;
  2. Mutual aid. Provide mutual aid and assistance in radiological health matters including, but not limited to, radiation incidents;
  3. Personnel and equipment. Encourage and facilitate the efficient use of personnel and equipment by furthering the orderly acquisition and sharing of resources useful for programs of radiation protection.

Article II: Enactment

This compact shall become effective when enacted into law by any 2 or more of the states of Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island and Vermont. Thereafter it shall become effective with respect to any other aforementioned state upon its enacting this compact into law. Any state not mentioned in this Article which is contiguous to any party state may become a party to this compact by enacting the same.

Article III: Duties of States

  1. Plan. It shall be the duty of each party state to formulate and put into effect an intrastate radiation incident plan which is compatible with the interstate radiation incident plan formulated pursuant to this compact.
  2. Aid. Whenever the compact administrator of a party state requests aid from the compact administrator of any other party state pursuant to this compact, it shall be the duty of the requested state to render all possible aid to the requesting state which is consonant with the maintenance of protection of its own people. The compact administrator of a party state may delegate any or all of his authority to request aid or respond to requests for aid pursuant to this compact to one or more subordinates, in order that requests for aid and responses thereto shall not be impeded by reason of the absence of unavailability of the compact administrator. Any compact administrator making such a delegation shall inform all the other compact administrators thereof, and shall inform them of the identity of the subordinate or subordinates to whom the delegation has been made.
  3. Personnel and equipment. Each party state shall maintain adequate radiation protection personnel and equipment to meet normal demands for radiation protection within its borders.

Article IV: Liability

Whenever the officers or employees of any party state are rendering outside aid pursuant to the request of another party state under this compact, the officers or employees of such state shall, under the direction of the authorities of the state to which they are rendering aid, have the same powers, duties, rights, privileges and immunities as comparable officers and employees of the state to which they are rendering aid.

No party state or its officers or employees rendering outside aid pursuant to this compact shall be liable on account of any act or omission on their part while so engaged, or on account of the maintenance or use of any equipment or supplies in connection therewith.

All liability that may arise either under the laws of the requesting state or under the laws of the aiding state or under the laws of a 3rd state, on account of or in connection with a request for aid, shall be assumed and borne by the requesting state.

Any party state rendering outside aid to cope with a radiation incident shall be reimbursed by the party state receiving such aid for any loss or damage to, or expense incurred in the operation of any equipment answering a request for aid, and for the cost of all materials, transportation and maintenance of officers, employees and equipment incurred in connection with such request, provided that nothing herein contained shall prevent any assisting party state from assuming such loss, damage, expense or other cost or from loaning such equipment or from donating such services to the receiving party state without charge or cost.

Each party state shall provide for the payment of compensation and death benefits to injured officers and employees and the representatives of deceased officers and employees in case officers or employees sustain injuries or are killed while rendering outside aid pursuant to this compact, in the same manner and on the same terms as if the injury or death were sustained within the state for or in which the officer or employee was regularly employed.

Article V: Facilities, Equipment and Personnel

Whenever a department, agency or officer of a party state responsible for and having control of facilities or equipment designed for or useful in radiation control, radiation research, or any other phase of a radiological health program or programs, determines that such a facility or item of equipment is not being used to its full capacity by such party state, or that temporarily it is not needed for current use by such state, a department, agency or officer may, upon request of an appropriate department, agency or officer of another party state, make such facility or item of equipment available for use by such requesting department, agency or officer. Unless otherwise required by law, the availability and use resulting therefrom may be with or without charge, at the discretion of the lending department, agency or officer.

Any personal property made available pursuant to this section may be removed to the requesting state, but no such property shall be made available, except for a specified period and pursuant to written agreement. Except when necessary to meet an emergency, no supplies or materials intended to be consumed prior to return shall be made available pursuant to this section.

In recognition of the mutual benefits, in addition to those resulting from Article IV, accruing to the party states from the existence and flexible use of professional or technical personnel having special skills or training related to radiation protection, such personnel may be made available to a party state by appropriate departments, agencies and officers of other party states, provided that the borrower reimburses such party state regularly employing the personnel in question for any cost of making such personnel available, including a prorated share of the salary or other compensation of the personnel involved.

Nothing in this Article shall be construed to limit or to modify in any way Article IV of this compact.

Article VI: Compact Administrators

Each party state shall have a compact administrator who shall be the head of the state agency having principal responsibility for radiation protection, and who:

  1. Coordinate activities. Shall coordinate activities pursuant to this compact in and on behalf of his state.
  2. Incident plans. Serving jointly with the compact administrators of the other party states, shall develop and keep current an interstate radiation incident plan, consider such other matters as may be appropriate in connection with programs of cooperation in the field of radiation protection and allied areas of common interest, and formulate procedures for claims and reimbursement under Article IV.

Article VII: Other Responsibilities and Activities

Nothing in this compact shall be construed to:

  1. Protection program. Authorize or permit any party state to curtail or diminish its radiation protection program, equipment, services or facilities.
  2. Health protection. Limit or restrict the powers of any state ratifying the same to provide for the radiological health protection of the public and individuals, or to prohibit the enactment or enforcement of state laws, rules or regulations intended to provide for such radiological health protection.
  3. Existing arrangements. Affect any existing or future cooperative relationship or arrangement between Federal, State or local governments and a party state or states.

Article VIII: Withdrawal

Any party state may withdraw from this compact by enacting a statute repealing the same, but no such withdrawal shall take effect until one year after the governor of the withdrawing state has given notice in writing of the withdrawal to the governors of all other party states. No withdrawal shall affect any liability already incurred by or chargeable to a party state prior to the time of such withdrawal.

Article IX: Construction and Severability

It is the legislative intent that the provisions of this compact be reasonably and liberally construed. The provisions of this compact shall be severable and if any phrase, clause, sentence or provision of this compact is declared to be unconstitutional or the applicability thereof, to any state, agency, person or circumstance is held invalid, the constitutionality of the remainder of this compact and the applicability thereof, to any other state, agency, person or circumstance shall not be affected thereby.

See also

External links

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References


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