TITLE XVIII
FISH AND GAME

Chapter 213
ATLANTIC MARINE FISHERIES

Section 213:1

    213:1 Compact. – The governor of this state is hereby authorized and directed to execute a compact on behalf of the state of New Hampshire with any one or more of the states of Maine, Massachusetts, Connecticut, Rhode Island, New York, New Jersey, Delaware, Maryland, Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia and Florida and with such other states as may enter into the compact, legally joining therein in the form substantially as follows:

Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Compact


The contracting states solemnly agree:

Article I


The purpose of this compact is to promote the better utilization of the fisheries, marine, shell and anadromous, of the Atlantic seaboard by the development of a joint program for the promotion and protection of such fisheries, and by the prevention of the physical waste of the fisheries from any cause. It is not the purpose of this compact to authorize the states joining herein to limit the production of fish or fish products for the purpose of establishing or fixing the price thereof, or creating and perpetuating monopoly.

Article II


This agreement shall become operative immediately as to those states executing it whenever any 2 or more of the states of Maine, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Connecticut, New York, New Jersey, Delaware, Maryland, Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia and Florida have executed it in the form that is in accordance with the laws of the executing states and the Congress has given its consent. Any state contiguous with any of the aforementioned states and riparian upon waters frequented by anadromous fish, flowing into waters under the jurisdiction of any of the aforementioned states, may become a party hereto as hereinafter provided.

Article III


Each state joining herein shall appoint 3 representatives to a commission hereby constituted and designated as the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission. One shall be the executive officer of the administrative agency of such state charged with the conservation of the fisheries resources to which this compact pertains or, if there be more than one officer or agency, the official of that state named by the governor thereof. The second shall be a member of the legislature of such state designated by the commission or committee on interstate cooperation of such state, or if there be none, or if said commission on interstate cooperation cannot constitutionally designate the said member, such legislator shall be designated by the governor thereof; provided, that if it is constitutionally impossible to appoint a legislator as a commissioner from such state, the second member shall be appointed by the governor of said state in his discretion. The third shall be a citizen who shall have a knowledge of and interest in the marine fisheries problem to be appointed by the governor. This commission shall be a body corporate with the powers and duties set forth herein.

Article IV


The duty of the 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 conservation and the prevention of the depletion and physical waste of the fisheries, marine, shell and anadromous, of the Atlantic seaboard. The commission shall have power to recommend the coordination of the exercise of the police powers of the several states within their respective jurisdictions to promote the preservation of those fisheries and their protection against overfishing, waste, depletion or any abuse whatsoever and to assure a continuing yield from the fisheries resources of the aforementioned states.
To that end the commission shall draft and, after consultation with the advisory committee hereinafter authorized, recommend to the governors and legislatures of the various signatory states legislation dealing with the conservation of the marine, shell and anadromous fisheries of the Atlantic seaboard. The commission shall, more than one month prior to any regular meeting of the legislature in any signatory state, present to the governor of the state its recommendation relating to enactments to be made by the legislature of that state in furthering the intents and purposes of this compact.
The commission shall consult with and advise the pertinent administrative agencies in the states party hereto with regard to problems connected with the fisheries and recommend the adoption of such regulations as it deems advisable.
The commission shall have power to recommend to the states party hereto the stocking of the waters of such states with fish and fish eggs or joint stocking by some or all of the states party hereto and when 2 or more of the states shall jointly stock waters the commission shall act as the coordinating agency for such stocking.

Article V


The commission shall elect from its number a chairman and a vice chairman and shall appoint and at its pleasure remove or discharge such officers and employees as may be required to carry the provisions of this compact into effect and shall fix and determine their duties, qualifications and compensation. Said commission shall adopt rules and regulations for the conduct of its business. It may establish and maintain one or more offices for the transaction of its business and may meet at any time or place but must meet at least once a year.

Article VI


No action shall be taken by the commission in regard to its general affairs except by the affirmative vote of a majority of the whole number of compacting states present at any meeting. No recommendation shall be made by the commission in regard to any species of fish except by the affirmative vote of a majority of the compacting states which have an interest in such species. The commission shall define what shall be an interest.

Article VII


The fish and wildlife service of the Department of the Interior of the government of the United States shall act as the primary research agency of the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission cooperating with the research agencies in each state for that purpose. Representatives of the said fish and wildlife service shall attend the meetings of the commission.
An advisory committee to be representative of the commercial fishermen and the salt water anglers and such other interests of each state as the commission deems advisable shall be established by the commission as soon as practicable for the purpose of advising the commission upon such recommendations as it may desire to make.

Article VIII


When any state other than those named specifically in article II of this compact shall become a party thereto for the purpose of conserving its anadromous fish in accordance with the provisions of article II the participation of such state in the action of the commission shall be limited to such species of anadromous fish.

Article IX


Nothing in this compact shall be construed to limit the powers of any signatory state or to repeal or prevent the enactment of any legislation or the enforcement of any requirement by any signatory state imposing additional conditions and restrictions to conserve its fisheries.

Article X


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

Article XI


The states party hereto agree to make annual appropriations to the support of the commission in proportion to the primary market value of the products of their fisheries, exclusive of cod and haddock, as recorded in the most recent published reports of the fish and wildlife service of the United States Department of the Interior, provided no state shall contribute less than $200 per annum and the annual contribution of each state above the minimum shall be figured to the nearest $100.
The compacting states agree to appropriate initially the annual amounts scheduled below, which amounts are calculated in the manner set forth herein, on the basis of the catch record of 1938. Subsequent budgets shall be recommended by a majority of the commission and the cost thereof allocated equitably among the states in accordance with their respective interests and submitted to the compacting states.
Schedule of Initial Annual State Contributions
Maine $ 700
New Hampshire 200
Massachusetts 2300
Rhode Island 300
Connecticut 400
New York 1300
New Jersey 800
Delaware 200
Maryland 700
Virginia 1300
North Carolina 600
South Carolina 200
Georgia 200
Florida 1500
 

Article XII


This compact shall continue in force and remain binding upon each compacting state until renounced by it. Renunciation of this compact must be preceded by sending 6 months' notice in writing of intention to withdraw from the compact to the other states party hereto.

Source. 1941, 135:1, eff. May 27, 1941.

Section 213:2

    213:2 Amendment to Compact. – The state of New Hampshire hereby enters into an amendment of the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Compact with any one or more of the states of Maine, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Connecticut, New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Maryland, Virginia, South Carolina, Georgia, and Florida and such other states as may become party to that compact for the purpose of permitting the states that ratify this amendment to establish joint regulations of specific fisheries common to those states through the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission and their representatives on that body. Notice of intention to withdraw from this amendment shall be executed and transmitted by the governor and shall be in accordance with Article XII of the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Compact and shall be effective as to this state with those states which similarly ratify this amendment. The states consenting to this amendment agree that any 2 or more of them may designate the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission as a joint regulatory agency with such powers as they may jointly confer from time to time for the regulation of the fishing operations of the citizens and vessels of such designating states with respect to specific fisheries in which such states have a common interest. The representatives of such states on the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission shall constitute a separate section of such commission for the exercise of the additional powers so granted provided that the states so acting shall appropriate additional funds for this purpose. The creation of such section as a joint regulatory agency shall not deprive the states participating therein of any of their privileges or powers or responsibilities in the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission under the general compact.

Source. 1949, 248:1, eff. June 15, 1949.

Section 213:3

    213:3 Commission. – In pursuance of Article III of said compact there shall be 3 members, hereinafter called commissioners, of the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission, hereinafter called commission, from the state of New Hampshire. The first commissioner from the state of New Hampshire shall be fish and game executive director, ex officio, and the term of any such ex-officio commissioner shall terminate at the time he ceases to hold said office of fish and game executive director and his successor as commissioner shall be his successor as such executive director. The second commissioner from the state of New Hampshire shall be a member of the general court designated by the commission on interstate cooperation of the state of New Hampshire, and the term of the second commissioner ends when the general court is dissolved by the constitution or when he otherwise ceases to hold office. His successor as second commissioner shall be named in like manner. The governor, with the advice and consent of the council, shall appoint a citizen as a third commissioner who shall have a knowledge of and interest in the marine fisheries problem. 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 third 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 3 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. 1941, 135:2. RSA 213:3. 1967, 55:4, eff. June 12, 1967.

Section 213:4

    213:4 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 the 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. 1941, 135:3, eff. May 27, 1941.

Section 213:5

    213:5 Application of Laws. – Any powers herein granted to the commission shall be regarded as in aid of and supplemental to and in no case a limitation upon any of the powers vested in said commission by other laws of the state of New Hampshire or by the laws of the states of Maine, Massachusetts, Connecticut, Rhode Island, New York, New Jersey, Delaware, Maryland, Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia and Florida or by the Congress or the terms of said compact.

Source. 1941, 135:4, eff. May 27, 1941.

Section 213:6

    213:6 Accounts; Reports. – The commission shall keep accurate accounts of all receipts and disbursements and shall report to the governor and the legislature of the state of New Hampshire annually for the previous year and shall make recommendations for any legislative action deemed by it advisable, including amendments to the statutes of the state of New Hampshire which may be necessary to carry out the intent and purposes of the compact between the signatory states. 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 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 such state.

Source. 1941, 135:5. RSA 213:6. 1985, 399:3, I. 1999, 26:3, eff. July 1, 1999.