TITLE XVIII
FISH AND GAME

Chapter 213-A
CONNECTICUT RIVER ATLANTIC SALMON COMPACT

Section 213-A:1

    213-A:1 Compact. – The governor of this state is hereby authorized and directed to execute a compact on behalf of the state of New Hampshire with the states of Massachusetts, Connecticut and Vermont and with the United States Fish and Wildlife Service and the National Marine Fisheries Service legally joining therein in the form substantially as follows:

THE CONNECTICUT RIVER ATLANTIC SALMON COMPACT

Article I


The purpose of this compact is to promote the restoration of anadromous Atlantic salmon, hereinafter referred to as Atlantic salmon, in the Connecticut River basin by the development of a joint interstate program for stocking, protection, management, research and regulation. It is the purpose of this compact to restore Atlantic salmon to the Connecticut River in numbers as near as possible to their historical abundance.

Article II


This agreement shall become operative immediately whenever all of the states of Connecticut, Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Vermont have executed it in a form that is in accordance with the laws of the executing state and the Congress has given its consent.

Article III


Each state joining herein shall appoint 2 representatives to a commission hereby constituted and designated as the Connecticut River Atlantic Salmon Commission. One shall be the executive officer of the administrative agency of such state charged with the management of the fisheries resources to which this compact pertains or his designee. The second shall be a citizen who shall have a knowledge and interest in Atlantic salmon to be appointed by the governor for a term of 3 years. The director of the northeast region of the Fish and Wildlife Service, United States Department of the Interior or his designee and the director of the northeast region of the National Marine Fisheries Service, United States Department of Commerce or his designee shall be members of said commission. The commission shall be a body corporate with the powers and duties set forth herein.

Article IV


The duty of said commission shall be to make inquiry and ascertain from time to time such methods, practices, circumstances and conditions as may be disclosed for bringing about the restoration of Atlantic salmon in the Connecticut River and its tributaries.
To promote the restoration, preservation and protection of Atlantic salmon in the Connecticut River basin the commission may draft and recommend to the governors of the various signatory states legislation to accomplish this end. The commission shall, more than 60 days prior to any regular meeting of the legislature of any signatory state, present to the governor of the state its recommendations relating to proposed enactments to be made by the legislature of the state in furthering the intents and purposes of this compact.
The commission shall have the power to recommend to the states party hereto stocking programs, management procedures and research projects and when 2 or more states party hereto shall jointly stock waters or undertake cooperative management or research the commission shall act as the coordinating agency. The commission, using all available means, shall encourage acquisition by the signatory states of riverbank, riverbed and access thereto.
The commission shall consult with and advise the pertinent administrative agencies in the signatory states with regard to other anadromous species and their potential impact or the potential impact of sport fisheries and commercial fisheries for other anadromous species on the restoration of Atlantic salmon to the Connecticut River basin.
In the interest of developing a sound program of Atlantic salmon management the commission shall promulgate regulations governing Atlantic salmon fishing in the main stem of the Connecticut River in all 4 signatory states as hereinafter provided. Such regulations may: (1) establish the open and closed seasons for Atlantic salmon which may vary by river section, (2) establish hours, days of periods during the open season when fishing for Atlantic salmon shall not be permitted in designated areas, (3) prescribe the legal methods of taking Atlantic salmon including the type of gear such as gaffs, landing nets or tailers which may be used to assist in landing such fish, (4) establish the minimum legal length for Atlantic salmon, (5) establish the daily creel limit, the season creel limit and the possession limit for Atlantic salmon.
The commission shall recommend, review and issue comments on such regulations as may be promulgated by the signatory states governing Atlantic salmon fishing in tributary streams. The states of Connecticut and Massachusetts agree to make available for brood stock, from fish taken in the fish passage facilities at the Rainbow Reservoir Dam and the Holyoke Power Company Dam, such numbers of adult Atlantic salmon as the commission deems necessary to carry out the Atlantic salmon restoration program.
The commission shall have the power to issue a Connecticut River Basin Atlantic Salmon License and the sale of such licenses shall be handled by the individual signatory states or their authorized agents. The individual signatory states shall be accountable to the commission for all such licenses and the moneys received therefrom. The initial fee for such licenses shall be determined by majority vote of the commission but shall not exceed the maximum resident angling license fee of the signatory states except that the commission may upon a determination of need and with the unanimous approval of its membership increase such license and issuing fee. The individual signatory states or their issuing agents may retain a recording fee of up to $.50 for each license issued. Forms for such license shall be provided to the signatory states by the commission. Such license shall be a legal prerequisite for any person including minors fishing for or possessing Atlantic salmon in the waters or on the shores of the Connecticut River and all of its tributaries. In addition to said Connecticut River Basin Atlantic Salmon License, all persons, except those specifically exempted because of age, disability or other limitation as determined by statute or regulations of the individual signatory states shall be required to possess a valid resident or nonresident sport fishing license issued by the state in which such person is fishing. The commission shall recognize that in certain waters or sections of waters a daily rod permit may also be required, such daily rod permit to be issued by the state in which such waters or sections of waters are located; however, the signatory states shall not, by fee, distinguish between residents and nonresidents. The authority to limit the numbers of persons fishing for Atlantic salmon in certain tributaries or sections of certain tributaries shall remain the prerogative of the individual signatory states.
The respective police agencies of the signatory states shall have the authority to enforce all of the regulations and license requirements of the commission any place in the Connecticut River basin.
The commission shall have the authority to accept gifts, state grants and federal funds. The commission shall have the authority to expend money from fees collected for Connecticut River Basin Atlantic Salmon Licenses or from such other funds available to the commission to finance the cost of stocking, management or research carried on by signatory states to further the purposes of this compact. Such funds shall be in the form of direct grants to the agency of such state charged with the management of the fisheries resources and may be up to 100 percent of the cost of projects approved by a majority vote of the commission.

Article V


The commission shall elect from its number a chairman and a vice chairman and at its pleasure may remove such officers. Said commission shall adopt rules and regulations for the conduct of its business. At such time as funds are available to the commission the commission may establish and maintain an office for the transaction of its business. The commission may meet at any time or place but must meet at least semi-annually.
The commission shall have the authority to expend money from available commission funds to reimburse its membership for necessary travel expenses.

Article VI


At such time as funds are available the commission may employ and discharge at its pleasure such personnel as may be required to carry out the provisions of this compact and shall fix and determine their duties, qualifications and compensation.

Article VII


There shall be established a technical committee to consist of one fishery biologist from each of the signatory states, the United States Fish and Wildlife Service and the National Marine Fisheries Service to act in an advisory capacity to the commission. The technical committee shall have the authority to request employees of the signatory states, the United States Fish and Wildlife Service and the National Marine Fisheries Service or others who have special fields of expertise to act as special advisors to the committee. At such time as funds are available the commission may reimburse technical committee members and special advisors for necessary travel expenses.

Article VIII


No action shall be taken by the commission in regard to its general affairs except by affirmative vote of a majority of members present at any meeting, provided there is a quorum. A quorum shall consist of a simple majority of all members of the commission. Provided, further, that no action shall be taken by the commission unless such signatory state is represented at any such meeting. No recommendation or allotment of grant funds shall be made by the commission except by the affirmative vote of a majority of the members.

Article IX


Continued absence of representation or of any representative on the commission from any party hereto shall be brought to the attention of the governor thereof.

Article X


The states signatory hereto agree to make an annual appropriation to the initial support of the commission in the amount of $1,000 for each of the first 3 years that this compact is in effect.

Article XI


The commission shall keep accurate accounts of all receipts and disbursements and shall report to the governor and the legislature of each state party to this compact on or before the tenth day of January of each year, setting forth in detail the transactions conducted by it during the 12 months preceding January 1 of that year. The commissioner of administrative services of the state of New Hampshire is hereby authorized and empowered from time to time to examine the accounts and books of the commission, including its receipts, disbursements, grants and such other items referring to its financial standing as such commissioner of administrative services may deem proper and to report the results of such examination to the governor of said state.

Source. 1979, 108:1. 1985, 399:3, I, eff. July 1, 1985.

Section 213-A:2

    213-A:2 Commission. – In pursuance of Article III of said compact there shall be 2 members, hereinafter called commissioners of the Connecticut River Atlantic Salmon Commission, hereinafter called commission, from the state of New Hampshire. The first commissioner from the state of New Hampshire shall be the executive director of the fish and game department, and the term of such commissioner shall terminate at the time he ceases to hold said office of executive director, and his successor as commissioner shall be his successor as such executive director. The governor, with the advice and consent of the council, shall appoint a citizen as a second commissioner who shall have a knowledge of and interest in Atlantic salmon. The term of said commissioner shall be 3 years and he shall hold office until his successor shall be appointed and qualified. A vacancy occurring in the office of the second commissioner for any reason or cause shall be filled by appointment by the governor with the advice and consent of the council for the unexpired term. The executive director of fish and game may delegate, from time to time, to any assistant in his office the power to be present and participate, including voting, as his representative at any meeting of or hearing by or other proceeding of the commission. The terms of each of the initial 2 members shall begin at the date of the appointment of the appointive commissioner provided the said compact shall then have gone into effect in accordance with Article II of the compact; otherwise they shall begin upon the date upon which said compact shall become effective in accordance with said Article II. Any commissioner may be removed from office by the governor upon charges and after a hearing.

Source. 1979, 108:1, eff. July 15, 1979.

Section 213-A:3

    213-A:3 Powers and Duties. – There is hereby granted to the commission and the commissioners thereof all the powers provided for in the said compact and all the powers necessary or incidental to the carrying out of said compact in every particular. All officers of the state of New Hampshire are hereby authorized and directed to do all things falling within their respective provinces and jurisdiction necessary or incidental to the carrying out of said compact in every particular; it being hereby declared to be the policy of the state of New Hampshire to perform and carry out the said compact and to accomplish the purposes thereof. All officers, bureaus, departments and persons of and in the state government or administration of the state of New Hampshire are hereby authorized and directed at convenient times and upon request of said commission to furnish the said commission with information and data possessed by them or any of them and to aid said commission by loan of personnel or other means lying within their legal rights respectively.

Source. 1979, 108:1, eff. July 15, 1979.