Maine Revised Statutes

§352. Maine Agricultural Water Management Board

The Maine Agricultural Water Management Board is established in Title 5, section 12004-G, subsection 3-D and referred to in this section and section 353 as "the board." [2005, c. 559, §2 (NEW).]

1. Membership.  All members of the board must be residents of this State. The board consists of 9 members as follows:
A. Five members appointed by the commissioner, consisting of:
(1) A potato producer;
(2) A wild blueberry producer;
(3) A small fruit or vegetable grower;
(4) A producer of ornamental crops; and
(5) A livestock producer; [2005, c. 559, §2 (NEW).]
B. Three members appointed by the Governor, consisting of:
(1) A person with expertise in federal wetlands permitting;
(2) A person with expertise in agricultural engineering and water use efficiency; and
(3) A member of the general public; and [2005, c. 559, §2 (NEW).]
C. The Commissioner of Environmental Protection or the commissioner's designee. [2005, c. 559, §2 (NEW).]
[ 2005, c. 559, §2 (NEW) .]
2. Duties.  The board, working in conjunction with the Department of Environmental Protection, shall:
A. Oversee and coordinate the environmentally sound and affordable development of water sources for agricultural use; [2005, c. 559, §2 (NEW).]
B. Make recommendations for improvements to federal and state permitting processes for the development of farm ponds and other water sources for agricultural use; [2005, c. 559, §2 (NEW).]
C. Work to secure funding for the construction of environmentally sound, efficient and affordable water sources for agricultural use; [2005, c. 559, §2 (NEW).]
D. Use data generated by water withdrawal reports under Title 38, section 470-D and other available information to prioritize watersheds needing alternative water sources for agricultural use and the allocation of funding; and [2005, c. 559, §2 (NEW).]
E. Facilitate the implementation of the sustainable agricultural water source program under section 353. [2005, c. 559, §2 (NEW).]
[ 2005, c. 559, §2 (NEW) .]
3. Agricultural water use management plans.  In addition to its duties under subsection 2, the board shall develop a model for agricultural water use management plans including a list of issues to be addressed in each plan. The board shall assist agricultural users in the development of water management plans. For the purposes of this section and section 353, "agricultural water use management plan" means a written document that states the source of water and outlines how water is managed, including a method of storage, if needed, and how water is used on the farm for which the plan is written.
[ 2005, c. 559, §2 (NEW) .]
4. Terms of membership; chair.  Except for initial appointees under subsection 1, each member appointed serves for a term of 3 years. In the case of a vacancy, the Governor shall appoint a member to fill the unexpired term. The Governor and commissioner shall determine initial appointment terms to stagger term expirations. The board shall annually elect one of its members as chair.
[ 2005, c. 559, §2 (NEW) .]
5. Compensation.  Members of the board are entitled to expenses only.
[ 2005, c. 559, §2 (NEW) .]
6. Staff.  The department shall provide staff to the board.
[ 2005, c. 559, §2 (NEW) .]
7. Meetings.  The board shall meet as needed to perform its duties.
[ 2005, c. 559, §2 (NEW) .]
2005, c. 559, §2 (NEW).