Revision: Dec. 10, 2009, midnight
HB 558-FN – AS INTRODUCED
HOUSE BILL 558-FN
This bill establishes procedures for the lease of state parks or ski areas to private entities and establishes an enterprise fund for the benefit of municipalities which abut the leased state park or ski area.
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Explanation: Matter added to current law appears in bold italics.
Matter removed from current law appears [
in brackets and struckthrough.]
Matter which is either (a) all new or (b) repealed and reenacted appears in regular type.
STATE OF NEW HAMPSHIRE
In the Year of Our Lord Two Thousand Nine
AN ACT establishing procedures for leasing state parks for use by private entities.
Be it Enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Court convened:
1 New Sections; Expansion of State Park System; Lease of State Parks and Ski Areas. Amend RSA 216-A by inserting after section 3-k the following new sections:
216-A:3-l Lease of State Parks and Ski Areas to Private Entities.
I. The commissioner of the department of resources and economic development shall conduct a public benefit analysis prior to the lease or private management of any state park or state ski area to a private entity. The public benefit analysis shall consist of the following:
(a) Impact studies on the potential growth and development resulting from the lease and its affect on communities abutting the park or ski area including how the lease proposal fits with master plans and zoning laws of the abutting communities, potential real estate development and growth that is planned or could result from any lease and the location of those proposed developments, infrastructure and capacity of the communities in the region and the state to handle anticipated development or growth, traffic studies on state and local roads, and effect on schools, emergency services, water and sewerage infrastructure, affordable housing availability, and other town services.
(b) Recommendations for any expanded facilities or structures that would be built on the park property, and the type of design and operation that would fit with the culture of the park, the abutting communities, and the region’s natural environment.
(c) A financial analysis of the effect on the state park fund of leasing the state park or ski area including shortfalls and gains and ability to pay bonds issued.
(d) An outline of the ability needed by any proposed lessee to assist the state in meeting its mission required under RSA 216.
(e) Effect of the lease on the operations of the state park or ski area including staffing, income, and structural losses resulting from the lease, and suggestions for how any additional costs will be met.
(f) Identification of any shortfall in the capacity of the existing facilities to accommodate the public’s needs and how a lease will meet those needs.
(g) A detailed determination of the value of the assets of the state park or ski area.
(h) A detailed analysis of how any lease would fit into the master plan for the state park or ski area. If no master plan exists for the property, then leasing of the asset shall not be permitted.
(i) A detailed analysis of the environmental assets of the property and regulations governing those assets including analysis of the soils, water, wetlands, wildlife habitat, and scenic and aesthetic qualities, and multi-seasonal recreational opportunities.
(j) A detailed analysis of the populations who routinely use the state park or ski area and the kinds of uses.
(k) A description of the population demographics of the region where the state park or ski area is located and the impact on the demographics over a 10-, 20-, and 30-year period from leasing.
(l) The expected effect on property values in the abutting municipalities.
(m) The expected effect on workforce housing in the region.
(n) The expected effect on the property taxes in the abutting municipalities.
(o) The effect on transportation and recommendations and costs for public transit, if needed.
(p) The current role of the state in the management of state park or ski area, including the state’s regulatory authority and power and how that would change if the asset were leased.
(q) Detailed information on the state employees who work at the state park or ski area, the job titles, classes, salary, and benefits, and the potential effect to the local economy if the state park or ski area were leased.
(r) The composition of the board or commission that would be needed to provide oversight to any lease, the costs of providing administration to this board, and how the board members would be compensated for their work.
(s) A listing of operational responsibilities that would remain with the state, how these responsibilities would be shared, if at all, with the lessee’s responsibilities, and how the lessee would compensate the state for administering such operations.
II. The commissioner of the department of resources and economic development shall have the burden of demonstrating that a proposed lease of the state park or ski area satisfies the criteria listed under paragraph I and would provide a substantial public benefit.
III. If the commissioner of the department of resources and economic development determines that a lease to a private entity should be pursued, it shall submit a report of the results of the public benefit analysis, and any recommendation to the speaker of the house of representatives, the president of the senate, and the governor. A joint recommendation from the speaker of the house of representatives, the president of the senate, and the governor shall be required before the commissioner enters a lease of a state park or ski area.
IV. Every lease executed under this section shall contain a provision requiring the lessee to make payments to the enterprise fund established in RSA 216-A:3-m.
216-A:3-m Enterprise Fund Established.
I. The state treasurer shall establish a separate and distinct account known as the enterprise fund and shall deposit into said account all revenues derived by the commissioner of the department of resources and economic development resulting from the lease of state park land or a state ski area to a private entity pursuant to RSA 216-A:3-l. The fund shall be nonlapsing and continually appropriated to the department of resources and economic development for the purposes set forth in this section. Moneys in the fund shall be available to a municipality that abuts a state park or ski area which is being leased to a private entity and may be used by such municipality to develop a master plan, to review and update zoning laws, to pay for fire, school, ambulance, or other capital items, or to meet the costs of increased growth and development in the municipality as a result of the lease. A municipality may apply under this section once per fiscal year on a form to be provided by the commissioner. The commissioner may require the municipality to provide such information as the commissioner determines is reasonable and necessary.
II. The commissioner may adopt rules, pursuant to RSA 541-A, relative to application procedures, deadlines, and limits on disbursements.
2 New Subparagraph; Application of Receipts; Enterprise Fund. Amend RSA 6:12, I(b) by inserting after subparagraph (276) the following new subparagraph:
(277) Moneys deposited in the enterprise fund established in RSA 216-A:3-m.
3 Effective Date. This act shall take effect 60 days after its passage.
HB 558-FN - FISCAL NOTE
AN ACT establishing procedures for leasing state parks for use by private entities.
The Department of Resources and Economic Development states this bill may have an indeterminable effect on restricted state revenues and expenditures and increase local revenue by an indeterminable amount in FY 2010 and each year thereafter. This bill will have no fiscal impact on county and local expenditures or county revenue.
This bill establishes procedures for the lease of state parks or ski areas to private entities and establishes an enterprise fund for the benefit of municipalities which abut the leased state park or ski area. The Department of Resources and Economic Development states this bill consists of two components that may have an indeterminable effect on restricted state revenues, restricted state expenditures and local revenues. The first component requires the Department to conduct a public benefit analysis prior to the lease or private management of any state park or state ski area to a private entity. In the event that the Department would consider leasing a state park or ski area, the Department estimates the costs associated with the public benefit analysis would increase state park fund expenditures by $750,000 per study.
The second component of the proposed legislation effecting state restricted revenues and expenditures and local revenues is the requirement that any lease entered into pursuant to the proposed legislation, requires the lessee to make lease payments directly to a separate and distinct account, held by the Treasurer, called the enterprise fund. As stated in the proposed legislation, the enterprise fund shall be non-lapsing, continually appropriated to the Department and made available to local municipalities abutting the leased property. In the event that the Department was to lease a state park or ski area under the proposed legislation; this would have an indeterminable effect on state restricted revenue and expenditures due to the uncertainty of the ultimate fiscal impact of any potential leases entered into. However, any lease entered into would increase local revenue by an indeterminable amount due to the proposed legislation’s requirement that lease proceeds be designated for municipalities abutting the leased property.