Section 11-89C-4

Powers of public corporation; requirements for development or adoption of rules, procedures, ordinances, etc.

(a) When expressly required to comply with storm water laws, any public corporation created pursuant to this chapter shall have the following powers:

(1) To establish, maintain, and operate an organizational structure pursuant to this chapter, its original or amended certification, and its bylaws or other rules of procedure, that will enable it to implement the storm water laws for and on behalf of any governing body that exercises the option to participate in or with a public corporation, provided that no new or greater authorities or powers other than those specifically granted to the governing bodies are conferred upon any public corporation formed pursuant to this chapter. Except for the authority provided in subdivision (20), authority to enforce the storm water laws is retained wholly and exclusively to the governing bodies and may not be further delegated to or assumed by the public corporation, its agents or employees.

(2) To establish the procedure by which a governing body may elect to join the public corporation and by which a member governing body may elect to withdraw from the public corporation.

(3) To establish a board of directors to serve as the governing body of the corporation to establish policy and procedure for the corporation. The board shall consist of one representative from each member governing body. The representative shall be the mayor, if the member governing body is a governing body of a municipality, or a county commissioner, if the member governing body is a governing body of a county. The board shall designate at least three members, and no more than five members, to serve as an executive committee to perform the executive and administrative functions of the corporation. The executive committee shall include one county commissioner from the largest county member governing body, if there is one, and at least two mayors. If there is no county member governing body, there shall be at least three mayors; or if there are no participating municipalities, there shall be at least three county commissioners, representing different counties. The board shall elect one executive committee member as chair, one as co-chair, and one as secretary. Individual board and executive committee members shall serve without compensation, but shall be entitled to reasonable actual expenses that are properly documented and authorized. All other needed organizational matters, bylaws, rules of procedure, and officers shall be determined by the board of directors.

(4) To employ individuals directly or indirectly through loaned, detailed, or assigned employees from the member governing bodies or other entities. Employees directly employed by the public corporation shall be eligible to participate in the employee benefit programs of any member governing body, including insurance and pension programs, upon approval of the executive committee and the subject member governing body.

(5) To enter into contracts with individuals, governing bodies, member governing bodies, governmental agencies, professional associations, corporations, partnerships, and other legal entities to implement the functions of this chapter.

(6) To purchase, lease, license, own, or otherwise acquire real and personal property, including easements, rights of way, and all other interests in land, including municipal separate storm sewers, buildings, and other facilities and equipment.

(7) To construct, operate, maintain, repair, and replace facilities for storm water functions.

(8) To contract with member governing bodies for the construction, improvement, renovation, management, or operation of their municipal separate storm sewer systems.

(9) To purchase or obtain insurance and other appropriate tangibles and intangibles.

(10) To apply for, solicit, and otherwise obtain and receive from any governmental, public, or private source, grants, contributions, and donations, of money, all forms of property, equipment, supplies, services, and labor.

(11) To hold and invest its moneys in all legal forms of investment for fiduciaries.

(12) To salvage, lend, lease, or sell by cash or installment, with or without interest, its lands, interest in land, facilities, equipment, and other property.

(13) To undertake or participate in studies, surveys, analyses, or investigations of storm water runoff and other functions of the storm water laws and this chapter.

(14) To adopt necessary and appropriate policies, procedures, rules, and regulations applicable to the member governing bodies to implement the storm water laws in accordance with this chapter.

(15) To develop and hold public hearings on pro forma resolutions or ordinances, or both, which may be adopted by any member governing body to implement this chapter.

(16) To develop pro forma remedies and procedures for the enforcement of resolutions or ordinances, or both, adopted to implement this chapter.

(17) To sue and be sued, except as immunized hereby, in its own name and to appear in all administrative forums.

(18) To establish the cost, charges, fees, or assessments as required of the member governing bodies for participation in the public corporation, necessary to fund the operation, activities, projects, and facilities of the corporation.

(19) In accordance with Section 11-89C-10, to establish the procedure for the assessment and collection by the tax assessor and tax collector of the respective counties or other public official performing those functions, of any fees, charges, or assessments levied by a member governing body.

(20) To authorize any officer, employee, or other agent of the public corporation to enter upon private or public property under the regulatory jurisdiction of one or more of its member governing bodies during normal business hours and upon the presentation of appropriate credentials for the purpose of performing investigations regarding the existence and source of contamination, and determining from the owner or other appropriate individual the methods they will employ to stop, neutralize, remove, or otherwise remedy the contamination. Any officer, employee, or other authorized agent who performs the duties authorized under this section in accordance with provisions hereof shall be immune from arrest and prosecution for trespass in performing any legal duty pursuant to this chapter by presenting identification issued or authorized by the public corporation.

(21) To do any and all things necessary or convenient to implement and administer this chapter.

(b) In the development of any rule or procedures for the enforcement of such, any public corporation created pursuant to this chapter shall do all of the following:

(1) Set a date and time for a public hearing and afford the public and interested parties an opportunity to offer written comments, and to present testimony and evidence in support of their respective positions as to the proposed resolutions, ordinances, remedies, or procedures and may have counsel to represent them at their own expense. The board of the corporation shall consider fully all written and oral submissions presented. At the conclusion of this hearing and any continuation thereof, the board of the corporation may modify or withdraw such proposals or may adopt such pro forma resolutions, ordinances, remedies, or procedures which are reasonable and supported by evidence from the proposal itself, the public comments submitted thereupon and the public hearing record and which shall be thereafter presented to the member municipal or county governing bodies, or both, for their consideration. Adoption of any rule shall require an affirmative vote of at least two-thirds (2/3) of the members of the board of the corporation. No later than 30 days following the adoption of a rule, the public corporation shall issue a statement reflecting the reasoning and evidence supporting adoption of the rule and an explanation for rejecting the evidence or assertions made urging modification or withdrawal of the rule.

(2) Give notice of the hearing by publishing in a newspaper of general circulation published within the county in which the corporation members exist at least 45 days prior to the date of the hearing stating the date, time, and location of the hearing, and including either the terms or the substance of the proposals to be considered or a description of the subjects and issues involved, the address of the location where copies of the proposed resolution, ordinances, remedies and procedures may be inspected or copies thereof obtained, and the manner in which interested persons may present their views thereon. Every proposed rule shall be accompanied by a thorough statement identifying and explaining the purpose and support for its adoption. The notice shall also be timely delivered by electronic means (i.e., email notification) to all persons who have made timely request of the corporation in advance for advance electronic notice of any such hearings and timely mailed to all persons who pay the cost of the mailing and who have made timely request of the corporation in advance for advance notice by mail of any such hearings.

(3) Make available for public inspection and copying, at cost, any such proposed resolutions, ordinances, remedies, and procedures at least thirty (30) days prior to the hearing.

(c) The governing bodies shall satisfy all statutory requirements applicable to the respective governing bodies for adoption of ordinances, including notice and public hearing, before adopting any such pro forma resolutions, ordinances, remedies, and procedure, however, adoption by a member governing body of any ordinance or resolution recommended by the board of the public corporation or authorized by this statute shall require an affirmative vote of at least a majority of the members of the council or commission authorized to adopt such ordinances or resolutions in the governing body.

(Acts 1995, No. 95-775, p. 1835, §4; Act 2014-439, p. 1625, §1.)