Law:Title 6. Roadways. Subtitle K. Mass Transportation from Chapter 462. Southern High-speed Rail Compact (Texas)

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Subtitle K. Mass Transportation

Chapter 462. Southern High-speed Rail Compact

Section 462.001.  Definitions.

In this chapter:

(1)  "Commission" means the Southern High-Speed Rail Commission.

(2)  "Party state" means a state that is a party to the compact under this chapter.

Added by Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 322, Sec. 1, eff. September 1, 2009.



Section 462.002.  Execution And Text Of Compact.

The governor, on behalf of this state, is hereby authorized to execute a compact in substantially the following form with the states of Mississippi, Louisiana, and Alabama, and the legislature hereby signifies in advance its approval and ratification of such compact, as follows:

SOUTHERN HIGH-SPEED RAIL COMPACT

ARTICLE I.  PURPOSE

The purpose of this compact is to implement Pub. L. No. 97-213, including the conduct of a study of the feasibility of rapid rail transit service between the states of Mississippi, Louisiana, Alabama, and Texas and to establish a joint interstate commission to assist in this effort.

ARTICLE II.  EFFECTIVE DATE; DURATION

(a)  This compact shall become effective immediately as to the states ratifying it whenever the states of Mississippi, Louisiana, Alabama, and Texas have ratified it and Congress has given consent to it.  Any state not mentioned in this article that is contiguous with any party state may become a party to this compact, subject to the approval of the legislature of each party state.

(b)  This compact shall continue in force and remain binding on each party state until the legislature or governor of a party state takes action to withdraw from the compact.  However, any withdrawal from the compact is not effective until six months after the date of the action taken by the legislature or governor to withdraw.  Notice of withdrawal shall be given to the other party states by the secretary of state of the withdrawing party state.

ARTICLE III.  SOUTHERN HIGH-SPEED RAIL COMMISSION; APPOINTMENT; MEMBERSHIP

(a)  The party states through this compact establish and create a joint agency known as the Southern High-Speed Rail Commission.

(b)  The membership of the commission consists of:

(1)  the governor of each party state or that governor's designee;

(2)  one representative each from:

(A)  the Mississippi Energy and Transportation Board, or its successor;

(B)  the Office of Aviation and Public Transportation of the Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development, or its successor;

(C)  the Alabama Department of Energy, or its successor; and

(D)  the Texas Department of Transportation; and

(3)  five citizens from each party state, appointed by the governor of the party state.

(c)  The citizens appointed from the State of Texas must reside in a federally designated high-speed rail corridor.

(d)  An appointed member of the commission serves a four-year term.

(e)  A vacancy on the commission shall be filled for the unexpired portion of the term by the governor of the party state that appointed the member whose position becomes vacant.

(f)  A member is not entitled to compensation for service on the commission but is entitled to reimbursement for reasonable expenses the member incurs in performing commission duties.

ARTICLE IV.  SOUTHERN HIGH-SPEED RAIL COMMISSION; POWERS AND DUTIES

(a)  The commission shall hold regular quarterly meetings and such special meetings as its business may require.

(b)  The members of the commission shall choose a chairman and vice chairman.  The chairmanship shall rotate annually among the party states in the order of ratification of the compact.

(c)  The commission shall adopt rules and regulations for the transaction of its business and keep a record of all business.

(d)  The commission shall study the feasibility of providing interstate rapid rail transit service between the party states.  To facilitate this duty, the commission may:

(1)  hold hearings;

(2)  conduct studies and surveys of the problems, benefits, and other matters associated with the provision of interstate rapid rail transit service;

(3)  make reports on an activity conducted under Subdivision (2);

(4)  acquire by gift, grant, or otherwise from local, state, federal, or private sources money or property to be used for the business of the commission;

(5)  hold and dispose of money or property acquired under Subdivision (4);

(6)  cooperate with public or private groups having an interest in interstate rapid rail transit service;

(7)  adopt and implement 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

(8)  exercise any other powers as may be appropriate to accomplish the purposes of this compact.

ARTICLE V. FUNDING

Each party state agrees that its legislature may in its discretion make available and pay 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.  Nothing in this article shall be construed as binding the legislature of any party state to make an appropriation of a particular amount at any time.

ARTICLE VI.  CONFLICT OF LAWS

Nothing in this compact shall be construed to conflict with any existing statute, repeal or prevent legislation, or affect any existing or future cooperative agreement or relationship between any federal agency and a party state.

ARTICLE VII.  GRANT OF AUTHORITY

There is hereby granted to the governor, to the members of the commission for Mississippi, Louisiana, Alabama, and Texas, and to the compact administrator all the powers provided for in the compact.  All officers of the State of Texas are authorized and directed to perform any actions in their respective jurisdictions that are necessary to carrying out the purpose of the compact.

Added by Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 322, Sec. 1, eff. September 1, 2009.


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