Resolved, SECTION 1. This Act shall be entitled the “Citizens Health protect Act,” and shall be construed in a manner to achieve its public purpose, which is to ensure that the citizens of the Commonwealth are protected from the health effects of wind turbines.
SECTION 2. Section 1. (a) Notwithstanding any general or special law to the contrary, there shall be a special commission to study the health impacts of wind turbines and to recommend administrative and legislative changes to mitigate or eliminate any adverse health effects from wind turbines on the citizens of the Commonwealth.
(b) The commission shall consist of 21 members; a member of the Massachusetts medical society leadership, who shall chair commission; 4 members of the joint committee on public health, 1 of whom shall be appointed by the senate president, 1 of whom shall be appointed by the senate minority leader, 1 of whom shall be appointed by the speaker of the house, and 1 of whom shall be appointed by the house minority leader; the commissioner of department of public health, or his designee; a commonwealth licensed physician, appointed by the governor, who has written a peer-reviewed journal article in an internationally recognized journal on the health effects of wind turbines; 3 epidemiologists licensed in the Commonwealth, each of whom shall be appointed by the Governor; the president of the senate, or his designee; the speaker of the house, or his designee; the director of the Barnstable county department of health and environment, or his designee; the executive director of the Berkshire regional planning commission, or his designee; a local board of health official whom shall be appointed by the officers of the Massachusetts association of boards of health; a member of the Massachusetts municipal association knowledgeable about the health concerns of wind turbines whom shall be appointed by the board of the Massachusetts municipal association; 4 citizens of the Commonwealth each of whom shall reside within one square mile of an operating wind turbine and has registered a complaint with the local board of health, 1 of whom shall be appointed by the Barnstable County Commissioners, 1 of whom shall be appointed by the Berkshire Regional Planning Commission, 1 of whom shall be appointed by the Bristol County Commissioners, and 1 of whom shall be appointed by the Old Colony Planning Council; and a member of wind wise Massachusetts whom shall be appointed by the governor.
(c) The scope commission shall include, but not be limited to: (i) an investigation, review, and study of the health effects of wind turbines and wind turbine operations, including but not limited to, the effects of low frequency noise on humans and animals, sleep disorders, difficulty with equilibrium, headaches, childhood night terrors, effects on the inner ear, learning and mood disorders, panic attacks, irritability, concentration and memory, noise, flicker, proximity, size of wind turbine, and wind conditions; (ii) a review and analysis of all department of environmental protection and department of public health deliberations and determinations regarding a wind turbine concern identified by a citizen of the commonwealth to a state or local government official; (iii) recommending legislation that will promote the health of the citizens of the commonwealth including a minimum safe distance to site a wind turbine project away from dwellings, businesses, and municipal, commercial, and residential property lines, an wind turbine size range and design that reduces or eliminates health effects, and a process for wind turbine proposal to reviewed by a local board of health as part of the siting process, and any other recommendations that may promote public health within the commonwealth; (iv) creating a report that contains the result of the commission investigation, review, and study of the health effects of wind turbines and wind turbine operations; (v) using voluntary and uncompensated services of private individuals, agencies and organizations as may be offered or needed; and (vi) holding regular public meetings, fact-finding hearings and other public forums as the commission considers necessary.
(d) The commission shall submit its report and findings, along with any drafts of legislation, to the governor, the joint committee on municipalities and regional government, the joint committee on public health, the office of the senate president, the office of the senate minority leader, the office of the speaker of the house of representatives, the office of the house minority leader, the clerks of the house of representatives and the senate, and to each member of the commission not later than November 30, 2013.
(e) The commission may request from all state agencies such information and assistance as the commission may require. The commission may also request such information from companies and organizations with state contracts that provide services relative to the scope of the commission.
(f) Members of the commission shall not receive compensation for their services but may receive reimbursement for the reasonable expenses incurred in carrying out their responsibilities as members of the commission.
(g) The commission shall convene its first meeting no later than 30 days after the effective date of this act.
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