Bill Text - HB475 (2019)

Revision: April 25, 2019, 3:57 p.m.

HB 475 - VERSION ADOPTED BY BOTH BODIES

 

20Mar2019... 0938h

11Apr2019... 1636-EBA

2019 SESSION

19-0626

08/05

 

HOUSE BILL 475

 

AN ACT establishing a shoreland septic system study commission.

 

SPONSORS: Rep. Spang, Straf. 6; Rep. Oxenham, Sull. 1; Rep. Malloy, Rock. 23; Sen. Bradley, Dist 3; Sen. Fuller Clark, Dist 21; Sen. Watters, Dist 4; Sen. Feltes, Dist 15

 

COMMITTEE: Resources, Recreation and Development

 

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ANALYSIS

 

This bill establishes a shoreland septic system study commission.

 

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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Matter which is either (a) all new or (b) repealed and reenacted appears in regular type.

20Mar2019... 0938h

11Apr2019... 1636-EBA 19-0626

08/05

 

STATE OF NEW HAMPSHIRE

 

In the Year of Our Lord Two Thousand Nineteen

 

AN ACT establishing a shoreland septic system study commission.

 

Be it Enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Court convened:

 

1  Findings.  The general court finds:

I.  Septic systems installed without state approval are a potential threat to the water quality of New Hampshire's lakes, ponds, and rivers.

II.  Septic systems constructed prior to 1967 when inspections and state approval were first required, include some systems that inadequately treat wastewater.

III.  There are several difficult issues with detecting and accomplishing upgrades of septic systems on private properties that have prevented the problem from being solved statewide.  These need to be examined in a comprehensive study.

2  New Section; Shoreland Septic System Study Commission.  Amend RSA 485-A by inserting after section 44 the following new section:

485-A:44-a  Shoreland Septic System Study Commission.

I.  There is established a commission to study the potential impairment of surface waters in New Hampshire by non-state approved septic systems, in the context of private property rights of landowners.

II.  The members of the commission shall be as follows:

(a)  Three members of the house of representatives, one of whom shall be a member of the resources, recreation and development committee, appointed by the speaker of the house of representatives.

(b)  One member of the senate, appointed by the president of the senate.

(c)  A regional planner, nominated by the office of strategic initiatives.

(d)  A certified septic system evaluator and a certified septic system designer, both appointed by the Granite State Designers and Installers Association.

(e)  A representative of the New Hampshire Association of Conservation Commissions, appointed by that organization.

(f)  The commissioner of the department of environmental services, or designee.

(g)  A representative of realtors, appointed by the New Hampshire Association of Realtors.

(h)  A representative of a bank involved in financing residential properties, appointed by the governor.

(i)  A member who represents the interests of state lakes, appointed by the New Hampshire Lakes Association (NH Lakes).

(j)  A member who represents the interests of state rivers, appointed by the New Hampshire Rivers Council.

(k)  A representative of the New Hampshire Municipal Association, appointed by that association.

(l)  The Great Bay-Piscataqua Waterkeeper, or designee.

III.  Legislative members of the commission shall receive mileage at the legislative rate when attending to the duties of the commission.

IV.  The commission may solicit information from any person or entity the commission deems relevant to its study.

V.  The commission shall:

(a)  Develop approaches for achieving cooperation among communities, private property owners, environmental nonprofit groups, and state and federal agencies in solving the problem of inadequate septic systems.

(b)  Determine the most effective method for identifying potential non-state approved septic systems located within 75 feet of surface waters.

(c)  Determine what approach or approaches that respect private property rights can be taken to effect remediation of septic systems on private property, including regulatory, educational, and financial incentives.

(d)  Consider the ramifications of climate resilience, such as future groundwater and sea level rise, on the design and location of septic systems.

(e)  Consider any other issues the commission deems relevant to its study.

VI.  The members of the commission shall elect a chairperson from among the members.  The first meeting of the commission shall be called by the first-named house member.  The first meeting of the commission shall be held within 45 days of the effective date of this section.  Six members of the commission shall constitute a quorum.

VII.  The commission shall submit an interim report on or before November 1, 2019, and a final report on or before November 1, 2020, of its findings and any recommendations for proposed legislation to the speaker of the house of representatives, the president of the senate, the chairperson of the house resources, recreation and development committee, the chairperson of the senate energy and natural resources committee, the house clerk, the senate clerk, the governor, and the state library.

3  Repeal.  RSA 485-A:44-a, relative to the shoreland septic system study commission, is repealed.

4  Effective Date.  

I.  Section 3 of this act shall take effect November 20, 2020.

II.  The remainder of this act shall take effect upon its passage.