(a) There is created and established the Alabama Liquefied Petroleum Gas Board. The board shall be composed of eight members: The State Fire Marshal; the state Director of Public Safety; the President of the Alabama Public Service Commission; four members who are representatives of the liquefied petroleum gas retail Class A permit holders; and one member of the general public who shall be appointed by the Governor. The membership of the board shall be inclusive and reflect the racial, gender, geographic, urban/rural, and economic diversity of the state.
(b) Members of the board who are representatives of the liquefied petroleum gas retail permit holders shall have been legal residents of the State of Alabama for at least five years next preceding the date of appointment and shall have been actively engaged in the retail distribution of liquefied petroleum gas in this state for a period of at least five years. No retail Class A permit holder shall have more than one representative on the board at any one time. It is the legislative intent that no single corporation or partnership comprised of separate entities within the state, whether or not separately licensed, be represented on the board by more than one representative at any one time.
(c) From each of four substantially equal geographical areas of the state, designated as the southeast, the northeast, the northwest, and the southwest, the Governor shall appoint one retail permit holder member of the board. Such member shall be appointed from a list of no more than three nominees receiving the largest number of votes according to written ballots executed by representatives of retail Class A permit holders.
(d) In the event the Governor has not appointed a board member at the end of 90 days after the list of retail permit holders has been submitted to him or her, the person on the list having the most votes shall become the board member. In the event of a tie for the most votes, a majority vote of the board members shall determine which person of those tied shall become the board member.
(e) In the event a vacancy occurs during the term of a board member, the administrator shall call an election to fill the vacancy and the election shall be held and conducted pursuant to subsection (f). When an elected board member sells his or her LP-gas business or for any reason is no longer actively engaged in the day-to-day operation of an LP-gas business, his or her seat on the board shall be automatically vacated by the completion of the next regularly scheduled board meeting.
(f) The balloting for board members, successor members, and filling vacancies for an unexpired term of office shall be conducted by the administrator of the board under the direction and supervision of the board. For appointments and vacancies, the administrator shall forward by registered or certified mail an official ballot to each retail permit holder or his or her duly designated representative with instructions for executing the ballot and returning it to the board. The terms of all board members shall be for six years, including the consumer member and members serving on March 20, 1992, but no member shall be denied the right to succeed himself or herself and no member shall serve more than two consecutive terms of office.
(g) The board shall elect its own chair and vice chair at its first regular meeting each calendar year. All meetings of the board shall be held at Montgomery, Alabama, and shall be on a prescribed date, at least quarterly, and at such time as a majority of the board members may request in writing to the board chairman. Each ex officio member of the board may appoint a designee to represent him or her at all board meetings. Any four members, or their designees, shall constitute a quorum for the transaction of any business which may come before the board. The board may adopt bylaws and rules of administrative procedure, pursuant to the Alabama Administrative Procedure Act.
(h) The board may promulgate rules and regulations having the force and effect of law to carry out this article.