HOUSE DOCKET, NO. 4125        FILED ON: 7/13/2017

HOUSE  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  No. 3902

 

The Commonwealth of Massachusetts

_________________

PRESENTED BY:

Sarah K. Peake

_________________

To the Honorable Senate and House of Representatives of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts in General
Court assembled:

The undersigned legislators and/or citizens respectfully petition for the adoption of the accompanying bill:

An Act establishing the cape cod water protection trust.

_______________

PETITION OF:

 

Name:

District/Address:

Date Added:

Sarah K. Peake

4th Barnstable

7/13/2017

Julian Cyr

Cape and Islands

7/13/2017

Dylan Fernandes

Barnstable, Dukes and Nantucket

 

 


HOUSE DOCKET, NO. 4125        FILED ON: 7/13/2017

HOUSE  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  No. 3902

By Ms. Peake of Provincetown, a petition (subject to Joint Rule 12) of Sarah K. Peake, Julian Cyr and Dylan Fernandes for legislation to establish a regional fund for the costs associated with water quality restoration projects in the counties of Barnstable, Dukes, and Nantucket.  Environment, Natural Resources and Agriculture.

 

The Commonwealth of Massachusetts

 

_______________

In the One Hundred and Ninetieth General Court
(2017-2018)

_______________

 

An Act establishing the cape cod water protection trust.

 

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Court assembled, and by the authority of the same, as follows:
 

SECTION 1. Chapter 21 of the General Laws, as appearing in the 2016 Official Edition, is hereby amended by adding after section 27A, the following new section:-

Section 27B. (a) As used in this section, the following words shall have the following meanings unless the context clearly indicates otherwise:

''Board'', the board of trustees of the Cape Cod Water Protection Trust.

''Bond act'', a general or special law authorizing a local governmental unit to incur indebtedness for all or a part of the cost of a clean water or water pollution abatement project.

''Bonds'', bonds, notes or other evidences of indebtedness of the trust.

''Clean Water Act'', the Federal Water Pollution Control Act, 33 U.S.C. 1251 et seq.

“Clean water project”, a project intended to improve or protect water quality including, but not limited to, a water pollution abatement project or a septic system maintenance and repair program or a project listed in an approved 208 regionwide water quality plan adopted pursuant to the Clean Water Act.

“Clean Water Project Administration Fund”, a fund from which operating costs of the trust shall be charged; provided, however, that such costs shall include the hiring of personnel, the execution of contracts and such other costs as may be necessary for the operations of the fund; and provided further, that not more than 4 per cent of the amount in the fund shall be expended for operating costs.

''Cost'', as applied to a clean water project, any costs to a local governmental unit, whenever incurred, which is approved by the department in accordance with section 27A of chapter 21 of the General Laws, of carrying out a project including, without limiting the generality of the foregoing, costs for the planning, preparation of studies and surveys, design, construction, expansion, facilities, improvement and rehabilitation, acquisition of real property, personal property, materials, machinery or equipment, start-up costs, demolitions and relocations, reasonable reserves and working capital, interest on loans, local governmental obligations and notes in anticipation thereof prior to and during construction of the project or prior to the date of such loan, if later, administrative, legal and financing expenses and other expenses necessary or incidental to the aforesaid.

''Department'', the department of environmental protection.

''Eligible recipient'', with respect to a clean water project, a local governmental unit authorized to own, operate, finance or otherwise implement a clean water project and, with respect to a drinking water project, a local governmental unit or any other person, public or private, authorized to own, operate, finance or otherwise implement a drinking water project.

''Financial assistance or other forms of financial assistance'', a type of assistance provided to or on behalf of an eligible local governmental unit as authorized by Title VI of the Clean Water Act.

''Fund'', the Cape Cod Water Protection Fund.

''General revenues'', when used with reference to a local governmental unit, any revenues, receipts, assessments and other money of a local governmental unit and all rights to receive the same including, without limitation: (i) revenue as defined in section 1 of chapter 44 of the General Laws; (ii) local system revenues; (iii) assessments upon or payments received from any other local governmental unit that is a member or service recipient of the local governmental unit; (iv) proceeds of loans made in accordance with this section and proceeds of grants made in accordance with section 33E of chapter 21 of the General Laws; (v) investment earnings, (vi) reserves for debt service or other capital or current expenses; (vii) receipts from any tax, excise or fee, all or a part of which are payable or distributable to or for the account of the local governmental unit; (viii) local aid distributions; and (ix) receipts, distributions, reimbursements and other assistance from the federal government; provided, however, that “general revenues” shall not include any money restricted by law to specific statutorily defined purposes inconsistent with their treatment as general revenues for the purposes of this section.

''Loan'', a form of financial assistance subject to repayment in whole or in part that is provided by the trust to a local governmental unit or other eligible borrower for all or any part of the cost of a clean water project or a drinking water project, as applicable. A loan may: (i) provide for planning, construction, bridge or permanent financing; (ii) be disbursed in anticipation of reimbursement of or direct payment of costs of a project or take the form of a guarantee, line of credit, bond purchase agreement or other form of financial assistance; and (iii) be issued at such rates of interest including, but not limited to, variable rates and zero interest, may mature at such times and may be redeemable at the option of the board or the local governmental unit or other eligible borrower, all as may be determined in accordance with this section.

''Loan agreement'', an agreement entered into between the trust and a local governmental unit or other eligible borrower pertaining to a loan or the purchase and delivery of local governmental obligations or other instruments evidencing or securing a loan; provided, however, that a ''loan agreement'' may contain, in addition to financial terms, provisions relating to the regulation and supervision of a clean water project or the wastewater system of which it is a part; and provided further, that ''loan agreement'' shall include, but not be limited to including, a loan agreement, trust agreement, trust indenture, security agreement, reimbursement agreement, guarantee agreement, bond or note resolution, loan order or similar instrument whether secured or unsecured.

''Local governmental obligations'', bonds, notes or other evidences of indebtedness issued by a local governmental unit to evidence a loan.

''Local governmental unit'', a city, town, district, commission, agency or  board in Barnstable and Nantucket counties and in the county of Dukes County; provided, however, that  ''Local governmental unit shall not include a county.

''Local system revenues'', rates, rents, fees, assessments, charges and other receipts derived or to be derived by a local governmental unit from any water pollution abatement projects, any system of which such projects are a part and any other revenue producing facilities under its ownership or control or from the services provided thereby including, but not limited to, the proceeds of grants, gifts, appropriations and loans, including the proceeds of loans or grants made by the trust or the department, investment earnings, reserves for capital and current expenses, proceeds of insurance or condemnation and the sale or other disposition of property

''Regional local governmental unit'', a local governmental unit or at least 2 municipalities operating under the terms of an intermunicipal agreement or as a joint powers entity which provides wastewater collection, treatment or nutrient management services either on a wholesale or retail basis to service recipients in those municipalities, or designated parts thereof, and which derives all or part of its general revenue or local system revenues by assessment or other charge on those municipalities.

''Revenues'', when used with reference to the trust, any receipts, fees, revenues or other payments received or to be received by the trust including, but not limited to, receipts and other payments received by or deposited in the fund, payments of principal, interest or other charges on loans, grants, appropriations or other assistance from the commonwealth or the federal government or any political subdivision or instrumentality of either of them, investment earnings on its funds and accounts including, but not limited to, the fund, and any other fees, charges or other income received or receivable by the trust or the fund.

''Trust'', the Cape Cod Water Protection Trust.

''Trust agreement'', an agreement entered into by a board providing for the issuance, security and payment of bonds; provided, however, that ''trust agreement'' shall include a trust agreement, trust indenture, security agreement, reimbursement agreement, currency or interest rate exchange agreement, bond or note resolution or other similar instrument.

''208 plan'', an areawide waste treatment management plan in Barnstable and Nantucket counties and in the county of Dukes County that is certified by the governor or the governor’s designee and approved by EPA pursuant to the Clean Water Act.

''Water pollution abatement project'', any abatement facilities including, but not limited to, rehabilitation of abatement facilities to remove, curtail or otherwise mitigate infiltration and inflow, collection systems, treatment works and facilities as defined in section 26A of chapter 21 of the General Laws and any eligible facilities or projects and technologies consistent with those listed in an approved 208 plan for implementation of a nonpoint source pollution control management program or estuary conservation and management plan pursuant to the Clean Water Act.

(b)(1) There shall a Cape Cod Water Protection Trust to be administered by an unpaid board of trustees.  The board shall consist of 2 persons to be appointed by the governor, of whom 1 shall have expertise in municipal finance and 1 shall be a representative of a regional environmental organization on Cape Cod, and 1 person  to be appointed by each board of selectmen or town council in each of the municipalities within the area covered by an approved regionwide 208 plan; provided, however, that the appointees by the boards of selectmen or town councils shall be either members of their respective appointing authority or its town manager or administrator.  The trust shall administer the fund.

(2) Each municipality within Barnstable county shall be a member of the trust and each membership in the trust shall be confirmed by an affirmative vote of the board of selectmen or town council in the respective municipalities or upon the acceptance by each municipality of a local option funding source designated to be deposited in the fund. Municipalities in the county of Dukes County or Nantucket county may elect to become members of the trust if the municipality has a comprehensive wastewater management plan approved by the department or the department determines that the project is consistent with a regional water resources management plan, including but not limited to a 208 plan, if such a plan exists and by affirmative vote of their respective boards of selectmen. Upon membership of a municipality in Nantucket county or the county of Dukes County, the definitions of “trust” and “fund” shall include the Islands. Each member of the board shall serve for a term of 3 years and until a successor is appointed and qualified and each member of the board shall be eligible for reappointment. Each member of the board of directors appointed to fill a vacancy on the board shall be appointed for the unexpired term of the vacant position. Each member of the board of directors before entering upon his duties shall take an oath to administer the duties of office faithfully and impartially and a record of such oaths shall be filed in the office of the secretary of the commonwealth. Any member of the board of directors may be removed by the appointing authority for misfeasance, malfeasance or willful neglect of duty upon the filing by the appointing authority with the secretary of the commonwealth of a statement of facts and circumstances which form the basis for such removal. The exercise by the trust and by the board thereof of the powers conferred by this section shall be deemed to be the performance of an essential public function.

(3) The governor shall designate a member to serve as the chair of the board. The board shall annually elect 1 of its members as the vice-chair. A majority of the members of the board shall constitute a quorum and the affirmative vote of a majority of the trustees present shall be necessary for any action taken by the board. Any action of the board may take effect immediately and need not be published or posted unless otherwise provided by law. No vacancy in the membership of the board shall impair the right of a quorum to exercise the powers of the board. Meetings of the board shall be subject to section 20 of chapter 30A of the General Laws; provided, however, that said section 20 of said chapter 30A shall not apply to any meeting of the board in the exercise of the board members’ duties as officers of the commonwealth if no matters relating to the official business of the trust are discussed and decided at that meeting. The trust shall be subject to all other provisions of said chapter 30A; provided, however, that said chapter 30A shall not apply to any rules, procedures and guidelines adopted by the board pursuant to subsection (g).  Records pertaining to the administration of the trust shall be subject to section 42 of chapter 30 of the General Laws and section 10 of chapter 66 of the General Laws. The fund and any other money of the trust shall be public funds for the purposes of chapter 12A of the General Laws. The operations of the trust shall also be subject to chapters 268A and 268B of the General Laws to the same extent that the office of the state treasurer is subject to said chapters 268A and 268B.

(4) Notwithstanding any other general or special law to the contrary, a member of the board of directors who is also an officer or employee of the commonwealth or of a municipality or other public body shall not thereby be precluded from voting for or acting on behalf of the trust, the commonwealth or the respective municipality or other public body on any matter involving the trust, the commonwealth or that municipality or other public body and any member, officer, employee or agent of the trust shall not be precluded from acting for the trust on a particular matter solely because of any interest therein which is shared generally with a substantial segment of the public.

(5) Former and current employees of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts or of a county or municipality therein shall not be eligible for appointment to any position on the Cape Cod Water Protection Trust unless:

(i) a minimum of three years have passed since the individual’s termination of service as an employee of the Commonwealth, county, or municipality; or

(ii) the individual earned an annual salary of less than 50,000 dollars while employed by the Commonwealth, county, or municipality.

(c)(1) The trust shall receive, hold, administer and disburse financial assistance to local governmental units as beneficiaries of the trust to finance and otherwise defray and lower the costs of clean water projects as provided in and as necessary to implement this section. In accordance with the terms of a trust agreement entered into by the trust with respect to bonds secured by money or revenues of the fund, the holders of such bonds shall also be beneficiaries of the trust. The board shall apply and disburse money and revenues of the fund without appropriation or allotment by the commonwealth.

(2) Without limiting the generality of the foregoing and any other powers of the trust, the board may:

(i) adopt and amend by-laws and rules and procedures for the conduct of the business of the trust as it deems necessary to carry out this section;

(ii) apply for, receive, administer and comply with the conditions and requirements respecting any grant, gift or appropriation of services or money;

(iii) borrow and repay money by issuing bonds of the trust, to apply the proceeds thereof as provided in this section and to pledge or assign or create security interests in the fund and the receipts thereto to secure bonds;

(iv) make loans and other forms of financial assistance to local governmental units to finance or refinance or otherwise subsidize the costs of clean water projects, may acquire, hold and sell local governmental obligations and other instruments evidencing the loans and other forms of financial assistance at such prices and in such manner as the board shall deem advisable and may secure bonds of the trust with loans, local governmental obligations and other instruments;

(v) enter into contracts, arrangements and agreements with other persons and execute and deliver all trust agreements, loan agreements and other instruments necessary or convenient to the exercise of the powers of the trust;

(vi) obtain insurance and enter into agreements of indemnification necessary or convenient to the exercise of the powers of the trust;

(vii) sue and be sued and prosecute and defend actions relating to the affairs of the trust and the fund; provided, however, that the trust shall not become a debtor under the United States Bankruptcy Code; and

(viii) engage accounting, management, legal, financial, consulting and other professional services necessary to the conduct the programs of the trust.

(3) The trust may execute the powers and authorities granted to an entity created pursuant to section 4A1/2 of chapter 40 of the General Laws.  The trust shall not be or constitute: (i) a bank or trust company within the jurisdiction or under the control of the department of banking and insurance of the commonwealth or the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency in the United States Department of the Treasury; or (ii) a bank, banker or dealer in securities within the meaning of, or subject to the provisions of, any securities, securities exchange or securities dealers' law of the United States or of the commonwealth.

(4) The trust may apply for and receive loans and financial assistance from the trust and may pass through the proceeds of such funds to local governmental units in accordance with the terms and conditions established by the trust.

(d)(1) The board shall receive in trust, hold, administer and disburse in and from the fund exclusively for the benefit of the beneficiaries thereof the following funds:

(i) amounts designated by law as a funding source to the trust for the purposes of the fund;

(ii) amounts appropriated by the commonwealth to the trust for purposes of the fund;

(iii) proceeds of bonds of the trust to the extent required by the board's resolution for issuance of such bonds or any applicable trust agreement;

(iv) loan repayments and other payments received by the trust in respect of loans to local governmental units;

(v) investment earnings on money in the fund; and

(vi) any other amounts required to be credited to the fund by law or by resolution, loan agreement or trust agreement of the board or which the board shall otherwise determine to deposit therein.

(2) Actions by the board with respect to the fund shall be subject to this section and the applicable provisions of any loan agreement or trust agreement of the trust; provided, however, that when the board takes discretionary action, it shall be guided by the purpose of best effecting this section to implement financial assistance in support of clean water practices consistent with the responsibilities of the trust to its bondholders, local governmental units and other beneficiaries of the trust. The state treasurer shall be the treasurer and custodian of the fund and, subject to any applicable trust agreement, the state treasurer may invest money held in the fund in such investments as may be legal investments for funds of the commonwealth.

(e) Subject to any other law relative to the use of particular money in the fund and subject to any trust agreement for bonds of the trust, the board may apply and disburse money and revenues of the fund or any segregated account therein to:

(i) make and enter into binding commitments to make loans and other forms of financial assistance to local governmental units for the purpose of financing or refinancing or otherwise defraying the costs of clean water projects and to provide for all or any part of the debt service costs on loans and other forms of financial assistance made by the trust during the implementation of such projects and for such period thereafter as the board shall determine;

(ii) provide reserves for or otherwise secure bonds of the trust and to provide insurance and letters or lines of credit or other credit enhancements which it deems reasonable and appropriate for bonds;

(iii) transfer to the Clean Water Projects Administration Fund not more than 4 per cent of the amounts derived from the proceeds of each funding source received by the trust to the extent determined by the board; and

(iv) provide payment from any available sources for reasonable and necessary professional and financial services incident to the conduct of the programs of the trust, including the costs of issuance of its bonds.

(f)(1) Subject to any other laws relative to the use of money in the fund and any trust agreements for bonds of the trust, the board may also apply and disburse money and revenues in the fund or segregated accounts therein: (i) after taking account of any grant made by the department under section 33E of chapter 21 of the General Laws to provide, and enter into binding commitments to provide, a subsidy for local governmental units in the payment of debt service costs on loans and other forms of financial assistance made by the trust or to otherwise assist local governmental units for that purpose; and (ii) to provide reserves for or to otherwise secure amounts payable by local governmental units on loans and other forms of financial assistance made by the trust under this section.

(2) The board shall apply and disburse money in the fund, may commit such available funds to provide additional financial assistance to local governmental units as it deems appropriate and may include debt service on existing loans for water pollution abatement projects financed by the trust prior to the effective date of this section under terms and conditions determined by the board to be equitable to those local governmental units relative to the benefits received by other eligible local governmental units.

(3) The board shall establish rules, including the types of eligible projects and criteria that the department shall use to evaluate applications for additional subsidies beyond those provided by the trust. The board shall make every effort to align criteria for funds with the state revolving fund established under chapter 29C of the General Laws. The additional subsidies shall be made available to eligible projects appearing on the department's 2017 intended use plan and subsequent years. The criteria shall be reflective of: (i) the board's current priorities; (ii) best management practices; and (iii) sustainability criteria, compliance with the 208 plan and the assurance that, to the extent the local governmental unit has eligible projects, it receives financial benefits over the life of the fund equal to the amount of money originating in that local governmental unit and deposited in the fund.

(g)(1) The board shall take all necessary or incidental actions to:

(i) cooperate with appropriate state and federal agencies in all matters related to the administration of the fund;

(ii) prepare and enter into grant agreements, operating agreements and other agreements with the federal government and the department relating to the fund;

(iii) submit annual and other reports and audits on the activities of the board pertaining to the fund to the governor, the general court, the department of environmental protection and the department of revenue;

(iv) establish and collect such fees, charges and interest rates as the board shall determine to be reasonable and to hold, apply and disburse such money within or without the fund to the implementation of this section;

(v) establish jointly with the state treasurer fiscal controls and accounting procedures for the fund and the trust; and

(vi) adopt rules, procedures and guidelines for administration of its programs and for the maintenance of suitable accounting procedures by local governmental units for fund proceeds and projects.

(2) The trust may:

(i) adopt and amend by-laws for the regulation of its affairs and the conduct of its business;

(ii) adopt an official seal and alter the same as it deems necessary;

(iii) maintain an office at such places as it may determine;

(iv) adopt a fiscal year to conform with the fiscal year of the commonwealth;

(v) adopt and enforce rules and procedures in connection with the performance of its functions and duties and, without limitation on other reasonable means of enforcement, may establish penalties for violations of its rules; provided, however, that no penalty shall exceed $10,000 each a single violation; and provided further, that in the case of a continuing violation, the trust may count each day as a separate violation;

(vi) sue and be sued, prosecute and defend actions relating to its affairs and be liable in tort in the same manner as a private person except that the trust and its members, employees and agents shall not be liable in tort for acts and omissions constituting: (A) the exercise of a legislative or judicial function; (B) the exercise of an administrative function involving the determination of fundamental governmental policy; or (C) the exercise of a discretionary function or duty;  provided, however, that property of the Trust, other than, in actions to enforce payment of bonds, the revenues and funds pledged to the payment of bonds, shall not be subject to attachment nor levied upon by execution;  and provided further, that the trust shall not become a debtor under the United States Bankruptcy Code;

(vii) employ personnel as hereinafter provided and engage engineering, accounting, management, legal, financial and environmental consulting and other professional services, including any environmental monitoring necessary to assess and evaluate ongoing water quality changes; provided, however, that costs under this clause shall not be more than 4 per cent of the amount in the fund;

(viii) receive and apply its revenues to the purposes of this section without appropriation or allotment by the commonwealth or any political subdivision thereof;

(ix) borrow money and issue bonds and pledge or assign or create security interests in funds or revenues of the trust to pay or secure those bonds;

(x) obtain insurance and enter into agreements of indemnification necessary or convenient to the exercise of the trust’s powers;

(xi) apply for, receive, administer and comply with the conditions and requirements respecting any grant, gift or appropriation of property, services or money;

(xii) enter into contracts, arrangements and agreements with other persons in matters necessary or convenient to its operation including, but not limited to, matters or technical cooperation, planning, management, administration and operations and execute and deliver instruments necessary or convenient to the exercise of its powers;

(xviii) appear on its own behalf before public bodies including, but not limited to, the Congress of the United States and the general court of the commonwealth in all matters relating to its powers and purposes; and

(xix) do all other things necessary, convenient or desirable for carrying out this section notwithstanding any other provision of this section relative to the trust’s regulations, charges and operations or any powers the trust may exercise under any other general or special law.

(3) An administrator, who shall be a person professionally skilled and experienced in finance, public works or public utility programs or public administration with significant experience in wastewater pollution abatement, shall be appointed by the board for a term of not more than 5 years as chief executive officer of the trust and shall continue to serve until a successor is appointed and qualified.  An administrator shall be eligible for reappointment for like 5-year terms. An administrator may be removed by the board for misfeasance, malfeasance or willful neglect of duty upon the filing by the board with the state secretary of a statement of facts and circumstances which form the basis for such removal. The administrator shall administer the affairs of the trust including, but not limited to, matters relating to contracting, procurement, personnel and administration under the supervision of the board of directors in accordance with such authorizations as the board of directors may from time to time reasonably adopt. The trust shall also appoint persons to hold the offices of secretary and treasurer to the trust. The secretary and treasurer shall not be members of the board. The secretary shall be the custodian of the books and records of the trust and of the trust’s seal and shall keep a record of the proceedings of the board. The secretary may cause copies to be made of all minutes and other records and documents of the trust and may give certificates under its official seal to the effect that such copies are true copies and all persons dealing with the trust may rely upon such certificates. The treasurer shall have charge of the books of account and accounting records of the trust and shall be responsible, under the supervision of the administrator, for financial control for the trust. Upon the recommendation of the administrator, the board shall appoint and establish reasonable compensation, benefits and other terms of employment for other officers and other employees of the trust as it deems necessary, including assistant secretaries and assistant treasurers in who may be vested with any of the powers of the secretary and the treasurer, respectively. Except as otherwise provided for the appointment of the administrator, other officers and employees of the trust shall serve at the pleasure of the board or under collective bargaining agreements or contracts of employment; provided, however, that no contract of employment, except for that of the administrator, shall exceed a term of 3 years; provided, however, that such contracts may be renewed.

(4) The trust may indemnify any present or past director, officer, employee or agent of the trust against liabilities, claims, costs and expenses, including legal expenses, in connection with any actual or threatened proceeding, and any settlement thereof approved by the trust if such action or proceeding has arisen by reason of any act or omission within the scope of such person’s duties for the trust; provided, however, that no indemnification shall be provided to a person concerning a matter as to which the person is finally adjudicated to have acted either without the belief held in good faith that the conduct was in the best interests of the trust or with reason to believe that such person’s conduct was unlawful. Costs and expenses may be paid prior to a final disposition upon receipt of an undertaking, which the trust may accept without regard to the financial resources of the person indemnified, that the person receiving the benefit of payments shall repay such payments if such person shall be finally adjudicated not to be entitled to indemnification under this paragraph. The trust may purchase insurance on behalf of itself and any of its directors, officers, employees or agents against any liability arising out of such person's status as such whether or not the trust would have the power to indemnify that person against such liability.

(5) The trust and its employees shall be subject to chapter 150E of the General Laws and, for the purposes of said chapter 150E, the trust shall be deemed to be an employer or public employer and a legislative body. The trust may designate a representative to act in its interest in labor relations matters with its employees.

(6) The trust shall establish an internal special audit unit which, under the direct supervision of the administrator, shall monitor the quality, efficiency and integrity of the trust's operating and capital programs.  The audit unit shall make periodic recommendations and reports to the administrator and the board of directors.

(h) Upon the board's request, the state treasurer shall pay to the trust for deposit in the fund money appropriated by the commonwealth to the trust for any purposes of the fund or any account therein. The board and the state treasurer shall enter into agreements establishing procedures for the payment of amounts appropriated by the commonwealth to the trust. An agreement may include such covenants and undertakings of the commonwealth and the trust as the board and the state treasurer may deem necessary or desirable. Notwithstanding any general or special law to the contrary and unless otherwise specifically provided for in such laws, any law enacted by a vote taken by the yeas and nays of 2/3 of each house of the general court present and voting thereon and approved by the governor which authorizes the state treasurer to issue bonds or notes of the commonwealth or otherwise authorizes the commonwealth to borrow money to provide money to meet any appropriation to the trust for the purposes of the fund shall be deemed to authorize the state treasurer, with the approval of the governor, to enter into agreements with the trust pledging the full faith and credit of the commonwealth to a schedule of payments to the fund of the amounts therein appropriated including, without being limited to, the amount, time and manner of those payments. The agreements of the commonwealth and the rights of the trust thereunder may be assigned and pledged as security for the bonds of the trust. No agreement authorized by this section shall supersede or interfere with the exercise of the powers specifically reserved to the department under section 27A of chapter 21 of the General Laws. Notwithstanding any general or special law to the contrary and in the discretion of the state treasurer, with the approval of the governor, payments to the trust of amounts authorized pursuant to the issuance of bonds by the commonwealth as provided in this section may be met by the deposit in the fund of bonds of the commonwealth which are so authorized to meet such appropriation. Bonds so deposited may be assigned and pledged as security for any bonds of the trust and may mature or be redeemable on such dates and in such amounts, may bear interest at such rates or be deposited in the fund at such discount or premium, may bear such limitations on negotiation or resale by the trust and may bear such other terms and conditions, as the state treasurer shall determine to be in the best interests of the commonwealth; provided, however, that the effective yield on such bonds shall not exceed the greater of the effective yield on the bonds of the trust which they secure and the effective yield on comparable bonds not so deposited in the fund, as determined by the state treasurer after consultation with the secretary of administration and finance. For the purposes of section 49 of chapter 29 of the General Laws, the net proceeds of bonds deposited in the fund as instruments, the principal amount of which increases during the life of the instrument, shall be deemed to be the present value of the amount payable thereon at maturity discounted to the date of deposit at the yield on such bonds.

(i)(1) The board may provide by resolution for the issuance from time to time of bonds for any purpose of the trust, which bonds may be issued as general obligations of the trust or as special obligations payable solely from particular revenues or money of the trust. The bonds of each issue may be dated, may bear interest at such rates, including rates variable from time to time, and may mature or otherwise be payable or redeemable at such times as the board may determine. The board shall determine the denominations of bonds, the details of their execution and authentication and their places of payment within or without the commonwealth. Prior to the initial issuance of each series of bonds, the board shall advise the state finance and governance board established in section 97 of chapter 6 of the General Laws of the terms of the bonds and the timing of their issuance. In case any trustee or officer whose signature appears on any bonds shall cease to be such trustee or officer before their delivery, the signature shall nevertheless be valid and sufficient as if the trustee or officer had remained in office until delivery. Bonds may be issued in certificated or uncertificated form, payable to bearer or registered owners and, if notes, may be made payable to bearer or to order. The board may sell the bonds of the trust at public or private sale at par or for such premium or discount price as it may determine. The board may by resolution delegate to any trustee or officer of the trust the power to determine any of the matters set forth in this section.

(2) Bonds of the trust may be secured by a trust agreement between the trust and the bond owners or a corporate trustee which may be a trust company or bank having the powers of a trust company within or without the commonwealth. A trust agreement may pledge or assign, in whole or in part, any loan agreements and local governmental obligations and the revenues, funds and other assets or property held or to be received by the trust including, but not limited to, all money and investments on deposit from time to time in the fund or any account thereof and any contract or other rights to receive the same, whether then existing or thereafter coming into existence and whether then held or thereafter acquired by the trust and the proceeds thereof. A trust agreement may contain, without limitation, provisions for protecting and enforcing the rights, security and remedies of the bondholders, provisions defining defaults and establishing remedies, which may include acceleration and may also contain restrictions on the remedies by individual bondholders. A trust agreement may also contain covenants of the trust concerning the custody, investment and application of money, the enforcement of loan agreements and local governmental obligations, the issue of additional or refunding bonds, the use of surplus bond proceeds, the establishment of reserves and the regulation of other matters customarily treated in trust agreements. At the request of the board, the state treasurer shall join in any trust agreement or to otherwise agree with the trust, any lender or any trustee for bondholders to hold the fund in compliance with any covenants and provisions relating to the fund contained in any trust agreement.

(3) Bonds may be issued by the trust in the form of lines of credit or other credit enhancements under terms and conditions determined by the board. In addition to other lawful security, bonds may be secured, in whole or in part, by financial guarantees, by insurance, by letters or lines of credit or by other credit enhancements issued to the trust or to a trustee or other person, by a bank, trust company, insurance or surety company or other financial institution, within or without the commonwealth. The trust may pledge or assign, in whole or in part, any loan agreements and local governmental obligations and the revenues, funds and other assets and property held or to be received by the trust and any contract or other rights to receive the same, whether then existing or thereafter coming into existence and whether then held or thereafter acquired by the trust and the proceeds thereof as security for such guarantees or insurance or for the reimbursement to any issuer of a letter or line of credit.

(4) The board may by resolution provide for the issue by the trust of interim receipts or temporary bonds, exchangeable for definitive bonds when the bonds are executed and are available for delivery. The board may also provide for replacement of mutilated, destroyed or lost bonds. The trust may purchase and invite offers to tender for purchase any outstanding bonds; provided, however, that no purchase by the trust shall be made at a price, exclusive of accrued interest if any, exceeding the bond's principal amount or, if greater, its redemption price when next redeemable at the option of the trust. The trust may resell any bonds it purchases in such manner and for such price as it may determine.

(5) The board may also provide for issue by the trust of temporary notes in anticipation of grants, revenues or appropriations to the fund. The issue of such notes shall be governed by the applicable provisions of this section relating to the issue of bonds; provided, however, that notes issued in anticipation of revenues shall mature not later than 1 year from their respective dates or the date of expected receipt of such revenues, if later, and notes issued in anticipation of grants shall mature no later than 6 months after the expected date of receipt of such grant. The board may also issue refunding bonds of the trust paying pay any bonds at or prior to maturity. Refunding bonds may be issued at any time at or prior to the maturity or redemption or purchase of the refunded bonds. Refunding bonds may be issued in sufficient amounts to pay or provide for payment of the principal of the bonds being refunded, together with any redemption premium thereon, any interest or discount accrued or to accrue to the date of payment, costs of issuance and other expenses and reserves reasonably necessary to achieve the refunding.

(6) Bonds of the trust shall be: (i) securities in which public officers and agencies, insurance companies, financial institutions, investment companies, executors, administrators, trustees and others may properly invest funds, including capital within their control; and (ii) securities which may be deposited with any public officer or agency for any purpose for which the deposit of bonds is authorized by law.

(7) Bonds issued prior to January 1, 2023 shall be backed by the full faith and credit of the commonwealth. Bonds issued by the trust after January 1 2023 shall not be deemed to be a debt or a pledge of the full faith and credit of the commonwealth or of any of its political subdivisions but shall be payable solely from the revenues and money of the fund and other money and rights pledged to their payment. Bonds shall recite that neither the commonwealth nor any political subdivision thereof shall be obligated to pay the same and neither the full faith and credit nor the taxing power of the commonwealth or any political subdivision is pledged to their payment. A bond shall recite whether it is a general obligation of the trust or a special obligation payable solely from particular revenues, funds, assets or other property.

(8) Bonds of the trust shall be deemed to be investment securities under chapter 106 of the General Laws. Bonds, their transfer and the income therefrom, including any profit made on the sale thereof, shall be exempt from taxation by and within the commonwealth. The trust shall not be required to pay any taxes, assessments or excises upon its income, existence, operation or assets, money or revenues.

(9) Any bank or trust company may act as a depository of the fund or trustee under a trust agreement if it furnishes such indemnification and reasonable security as the board may require. Any assignment or pledge of revenues, funds and other assets and property made by the trust shall be valid and binding and shall be deemed continuously perfected for the purposes of chapter 106 of the General Laws or any other law when made. The revenues, funds and other assets and property, rights therein and thereto and proceeds so pledged and then held or thereafter acquired or received by the trust shall immediately be subject to the lien of such pledge without any physical delivery or segregation or further act and the lien of any such pledge shall be valid and binding against all parties having claims of any kind in tort, contract or otherwise against the trust, whether or not such parties have notice thereof. The trust agreement by which a pledge is created shall not be required to be filed or recorded to perfect the pledge except in the records of the board and no filing shall be required to be made pursuant to said chapter 106. Any pledge or assignment made by the trust shall be an exercise of its political and governmental powers and loan agreements, local governmental obligations, revenues, funds, assets, property and contract or other rights to receive the same and the proceeds thereof which are subject to the lien of a pledge or assignment created under this section shall not be applied to any purposes not authorized by the pledge or assignment. A holder of a bond and a trustee under a trust agreement, except to the extent its rights may be restricted by the trust agreement, may bring suit upon the bonds and may pursue any other legal action to protect and enforce its rights and compel performance of all duties required to be performed by the trust and the board.

(j)(1) A local governmental unit may apply to the trust for assistance in financing the cost of a clean water pollution project. At the option of the trust, financial assistance may be in the form of a grant payment of new or existing debt service on instruments issued by a local governmental unit or loans, unsecured or secured by local governmental obligations for delivery to the trust to evidence the loan. Each award of financial assistance shall be made pursuant to an agreement between the trust and the local governmental unit acting by and through the officer, board, committee or other body authorized by law or otherwise or by its chief executive officer.

(2) A local governmental unit may receive, apply, pledge, assign and grant security interests in its general revenues and local system revenues to secure its obligations under a financing agreement and local governmental obligations as provided in this section and may fix, revise, charge and collect fees, rates, rents, assessments and other charges of general or special application for the operation or services of a clean water project, the system of which it is a part and any other revenue-producing facilities from which the local governmental unit derives local system revenues to meet its obligations under any agreement or local governmental obligation or otherwise to provide for the construction, maintenance and operation of the project and the system and facilities.

(3) For entering into a loan and establishing the authorized terms and conditions thereof, and for issuing any local governmental obligations a local governmental unit shall be deemed to have the powers expressly granted to local governmental units in this section and the powers granted to that local governmental unit in any bond act applicable to it specifically or as a member of a class of governmental instrumentalities. Liberal construction shall be given in support of the broadest interpretation of local governmental unit powers derived from either this section or any bond act, provided that nothing in this section shall be construed as affecting the manner of voting and other procedures relating to, or otherwise required by any bond act for, the authorization of indebtedness of any local governmental unit by the governing body thereof or any limitations on indebtedness of local governmental units.

(4) If any town, or any board, commission or other public instrumentality thereof or of the commonwealth which is a service recipient of a regional local governmental unit shall fail to pay when due and after demand any certified charges of the regional local governmental unit required to meet its obligations under this section, the regional local governmental unit may certify to the state treasurer the amount owing to the regional local governmental unit by such city, town or other instrumentality and the state treasurer shall promptly pay over to the regional local governmental unit without further appropriation any local aid distributions otherwise certified to the state treasurer as payable to the city or town or, in the case of any other instrumentality, as payable to all cities and towns in the service area of such instrumentality until such time as any deficiency in the amounts due to the regional local governmental unit shall have been offset by such payments from the state treasurer. In the event of a dispute between a city or town and the regional local governmental unit relative to the amount to be repaid to the regional local governmental unit by a city or town, the dispute shall be arbitrated by an appeals board consisting of the commissioner of revenue or a designee, the commissioner of environmental protection or a designee and a third person to be nominated by the Massachusetts Municipal Association. The state treasurer shall not offset any deficiency amount from the local aid distribution due to a city or town until the appeals board has rendered its decision. Any amount paid to a city or town by the treasurer under this section which is later determined, upon audit, to be in excess of the actual amount due to the regional local governmental unit shall, upon demand by the city or town, be repaid by the regional local governmental unit to the city or town.

(5) In addition to authority otherwise provided by law, if all or any part of a project shall fail to be approved for financial assistance pursuant to this act, the local governmental unit may apply to the Massachusetts Industrial Finance Agency for a loan to finance all or any part of such project. For such purposes, any local governmental unit as defined in this chapter shall qualify as a public body under section thirty of chapter twenty-three  A. The second sentence of paragraph (c) of section thirty-five of said chapter twenty-three A shall not apply to bonds issued by the agency.

(k) The trust may recover from a local governmental unit in an action in superior court any amount due to the trust together with any other actual damages the board shall have sustained from the failure or refusal of the local governmental unit to make payments owing to the trust.

(l)(1) In order to provide for the collection and enforcement of fees, rates, rents, assessments and other charges for the operation of a water pollution abatement project, the system of which it is a part and any other revenue-producing facilities from which the local governmental unit derives local system revenues, in addition to any other authority provided by law or any applicable bond act, local governmental units shall have all of the powers and privileges granted to them by the General Laws with respect to any similar fee, rate, rent, assessment or other charge. Without limiting the generality of the foregoing, local governmental units shall have the powers and be subject to the limitations, to the extent applicable and consistent with this section, as provided in sections 42A to 42F, inclusive, of chapter 40 of the General Laws whether or not said sections 42A to 42F, inclusive, of said chapter 40 have been accepted by the local governmental unit, and chapters 60, 80 and 80A of the General Laws.

(2) A local governmental unit may enter into agreements with the trust or the department regarding the operation of a pricing system for the services provided by a clean water pollution project, the system of which it is a part and any other revenue-producing facilities from which the local governmental unit derives local system revenues. Such agreements may include, but shall not be limited to including, provisions defining the costs of such services, the water pollution abatement project and any local system and other facilities and covenants or agreements regarding the fixing and collection of fees, rates, rents, assessments and other charges for such costs and the maintenance of such pricing system at levels sufficient to pay or provide for those costs and any payments due to the trust under a loan agreement or local governmental obligations.

(3) A local governmental unit may enter into agreements with the trust and the department regarding the operation of an enterprise fund established for a clean water pollution project, the system of which it is a part and any other revenue-producing facilities from which the local governmental unit derives local system revenues. Such agreements may include, but shall not be limited to including, fiscal and accounting controls and procedures, provisions regarding the custody, safeguarding and investment of local system revenues and other amounts credited thereto, the establishment of reserves and other accounts and funds and the application of any surplus funds.

(4) A local governmental unit may or, in the case of a regional local governmental unit, a city, town, board, commission or other instrumentality which is a member or other service recipient thereof may: (i) for furnishing wastewater services, establish rates, rents, fees, assessments and other charges on the basis of a flat rate per volume of wastewater processed or on the basis of ascending unit rates based on the quantity or strength of wastewater processed; and (ii) provide for furnishing wastewater services in its charges or through abatement proceedings conducted in accordance with its regulations for assurance of service to persons who by reason of age, infirmity or poverty are unable to pay the charges otherwise applicable; provided, however, that the aggregate liability of the local governmental unit or such member or other service recipient for amounts attributable to any loan or local governmental obligations shall not be diminished thereby. A local governmental unit and any such member or other service recipient which raises all or any part of the cost of wastewater services or an assessment therefor through real and personal property taxes assessed by the local governmental body shall indicate on the tax bills furnished to each taxpayer the portion of the tax assessed for such services.

(m)(1) Local governmental obligations issued by a local governmental unit shall be dated, may bear interest at such rates, including rates variable from time to time subject to such minimum or maximum rate, if any, as may be determined by such index or other method of determination provided in the applicable loan agreement, shall mature in such amounts and at such times, not later than the maximum dates if any provided herein and may be made redeemable in whole or in part before maturity at the option of the local governmental unit or at the option of the trust at such prices and under such terms and conditions as may be fixed in the loan agreement prior to the issuance of the local governmental obligations. The local governmental obligations may be issued as serial bonds or term bonds or any combination thereof with such provisions, if any, for sinking funds for the payment of bonds as the local governmental unit and the trust may agree. Local governmental obligations may be in such form, payable to the bearer thereof or the registered owner, be certificated or uncertificated, be in such denominations, payable at such places within or without the commonwealth and otherwise bear such terms and conditions, not inconsistent with this section and the applicable bond act, as provided in the applicable loan agreement or as the board and the local governmental unit shall otherwise agree. Local governmental obligations may be issued in a principal amount equal to the loan evidenced thereby or at such discount as the board and the local governmental unit shall agree.

(2) Local governmental obligations shall be payable within a period not exceeding the greater of the period, if any, specified in the applicable bond act or the useful life of the clean water pollution project financed by such obligations as determined by the department or, if incurred to finance more than 1 project, the average useful life of the projects. Except as otherwise provided in this section, local governmental obligations shall be payable in such  installments of principal, annual or otherwise, as will extinguish the same at maturity, the first installment to be payable not later than 1 year after the date of issuance of the obligations or 1 year after the date of completion of the project financed by the obligations as determined by the department, whichever date is later, and the remaining installments of principal, if any, shall be in such amounts and payable on such dates as the board and the local governmental unit shall agree.

(3) If a local governmental unit has authorized a loan in accordance with this section and the issuance of local governmental obligations under any bond act, the local governmental unit may, subject to the loan agreement and with the approval of the board, issue notes to the trust or any other person in anticipation of the receipt of the proceeds of the loan. The issue of such notes shall be governed by this section relating to the issue of local governmental obligations other than notes, to the extent applicable; provided, however, that the maturity date of such notes shall not exceed 3 years from the date of issuance of such notes or the expected date of completion of the project financed thereby as determined by the department, if later. Notes issued for less than the maximum maturity date may be renewed by the issuance of other notes maturing not later than the maximum maturity date.

(4) A local governmental unit may issue local governmental obligations to refund or pay at maturity or earlier redemption any local governmental obligations outstanding under a loan agreement or to refund or pay any other debt of the local governmental unit issued to finance the water pollution abatement project to which such loan agreement pertains. Local governmental obligations for refunding may be issued in sufficient amounts to pay or provide for the principal of the obligations refunded, any redemption premium thereon, any interest accrued and to accrue to the date of payment of such obligations, the costs of issuance of such refunding obligations and any reserves required by the applicable loan agreement. An issuance of refunding local governmental obligations, the amount and dates of maturities and other details thereof, the security therefor and the rights, duties and obligations of the local governmental unit in respect to the same shall be governed by this section relating to the issuance of local governmental obligations other than refunding obligations as the same may be applicable.

(5) Except as otherwise provided in subsection (n), the applicable bond act or by agreement between the trust and a local governmental unit, all local governmental obligations shall be general obligations of the local governmental unit issuing the same for which its full faith and credit are pledged and for the payment of which all taxable property in the local governmental unit shall be subject to ad valorem taxation without limit as to rate or amount except as otherwise provided by law.

(n) Notwithstanding any general or special law to the contrary, when authorized by a majority vote, local governmental obligations may be issued as limited obligations payable solely from local system revenues pledged to their payment in accordance with subsection (o). Unless otherwise provided in the applicable loan agreement, local governmental obligations issued in accordance with this section shall not be general obligations of the local governmental unit or a pledge of its full faith and credit and, notwithstanding any general or special law to the contrary, the amount of principal and premium of, if any, and interest on such obligations shall not be included in the computation of any limit on the indebtedness of the local governmental unit or on the total taxes assessable by the local governmental unit in any year or on any assessment, levy or other charge made by the local governmental unit on any other political subdivision or instrumentality of the commonwealth. A local governmental obligation issued in accordance with this section shall recite on its face that it is a limited obligation payable solely from local system revenues pledged to its payment.

(o)(1) Notwithstanding any general or special law to the contrary and when authorized by a majority vote, local governmental obligations may be secured by security agreements between the local governmental unit and a corporate trustee, which may be a trust company or bank having the powers of a trust company within or without the commonwealth, or directly between the trust and the local governmental unit. Any such security agreement shall be in such form and shall be executed as provided in the applicable loan agreement or as otherwise agreed to between the board and the local governmental unit.

(2) A security agreement directly or indirectly securing local governmental obligations, other than local governmental obligations issued in accordance with subsection (n), may pledge or assign and create security interests in all or a part of the general revenues of the local governmental unit. A trust agreement securing local governmental obligations issued in accordance with said subsection (n) may pledge or assign and create security interests in all or a part of the local system revenues of the local governmental unit but shall not otherwise pledge or assign any other general revenues of the local governmental unit unless otherwise authorized by the applicable bond act. A security agreement may contain such provisions for protecting and enforcing the rights, security and remedies of the trust or other holders of the local governmental obligations as may be determined by the board and the local governmental unit including, but not limited to, provisions defining defaults and providing for remedies including, but not limited to, the acceleration of maturities and, in the case of local governmental obligations issued under said subsection (n), the appointment of a receiver of the project financed thereby and the system of which it is a part, the covenants setting forth the duties of and limitations on the local governmental unit in relation to the custody, safeguarding, investment and application of money, including general revenues and local system revenues, the issuance of additional and refunding local governmental obligations and other bonds, notes or obligations on a parity or superior thereto, the establishment of reserves, the establishment of sinking funds for the payment of local governmental obligations and the use of surplus proceeds. A security agreement securing local governmental obligations issued in accordance with said subsection (n) may also include covenants and provisions not in violation of law regarding the acquisition, construction, operation and carrying out of the water pollution abatement project financed by such obligations, the system of which it is a part and any other revenue-producing facilities from which the local governmental unit derives local system revenues, the fixing and collection of local system revenues and the making and amending of contracts relating thereto. Any local governmental obligations may also be secured by insurance or by letters or lines of credit or other credit enhancements and a local governmental unit may pledge or assign any of its general revenues or local system revenues, as appropriate, as security for payments made thereon.

(3) Any pledge of general revenues or local system revenues made by a local governmental unit shall be valid and binding and shall be deemed continuously perfected for the purpose of chapter 106 of the General Laws and any other relevant law. The general revenues, local system revenues, money, rights and proceeds so pledged and then held or thereafter acquired or received by the local governmental unit shall immediately be subject to the lien of such pledge without any physical delivery or segregation thereof or further act and the lien of such pledge shall be valid and binding against all parties having claims of any kind in tort, contract or otherwise, regardless of whether such parties have notice thereof. Neither the security agreement or any other agreement by which a pledge is created shall be required to be filed or recorded except in the records of the local governmental unit and no filing shall be required to be made under said chapter 106.

(4) A pledge of general revenues or local system revenues in accordance with this section shall constitute a sufficient appropriation thereof for the purposes of any provision for appropriation for so long as such pledge shall be in effect and, notwithstanding any general or special law to the contrary, such revenues shall be applied as required by the pledge and the security agreement evidencing the same without further appropriation.

(p) The trust and its existence shall continue until terminated by law; provided, however, that no law shall take effect so long as the trust shall have bonds outstanding unless adequate provision has been made for the payment or satisfaction of those bonds. Upon termination of the trust, the title to the fund and all properties of the trust which remain after provision for the payment or satisfaction of all bonds of the trust shall vest in the commonwealth. The obligations, debts and liabilities of the trust shall be assumed by and imposed upon the commonwealth and shall be transferred to the state treasurer or to such other successor as the general court may designate.