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The 192nd General Court of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts

AN ACT AUTHORIZING CERTAIN CONVEYANCES OF LAND TO ESTABLISH THE SOUTHEASTERN MASSACHUSETTS BIORESERVE.

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. The division of capital asset management and maintenance, in consultation with the department of environmental management may convey, notwithstanding sections 40E to 40J, inclusive of chapter 7 and chapter 121B of the General Laws, to the Fall River Redevelopment Authority 3 parcels of land containing 300 acres of land located in the city of Fall River and the town of Freetown now a part of the Freetown-Fall River State Forest and presently being used for conservation and recreation purposes, to be more fully described on a survey to be prepared at the time of transfer by the Fall River Redevelopment Authority or the city of Fall River and approved by the department of environmental management. Said conveyance shall be subject to adequate compensation as set forth in the terms and conditions of "The Memorandum Of Understanding To Create The Southeastern Massachusetts Bioreserve" agreed to by executive heads of the executive office of environmental affairs, the department of environmental management, the department of fisheries, wildlife and environmental law enforcement, the division of fisheries and wildlife, the city of Fall River, the Fall River Redevelopment Authority, and the Trustees of Reservations dated June 29, 2000.

Said parcels are shown on a plan titled "Areas within the Freetown-Fall River State Forest of Proposed Fall River Executive Park and Associated Traffic Improvements" prepared by the department of environmental management, dated July 15, 2002.

SECTION 2. The Fall River Redevelopment Authority may purchase, notwithstanding chapter 121B of the General Laws or any other general or special law to the contrary, from the division of capital asset management and maintenance, in consultation with the department of environmental management, and subject to terms acceptable to the parties and to the department of environmental management, the parcels of land described in section 1.

The Fall River Redevelopment Authority may develop said land for commercial, industrial and other economic development purposes, but expressly excluding any use of said land for landfill or casino/gaming related purposes, without the necessity of adopting or adhering to an urban renewal plan, as defined in section 1 of chapter 121B of the General Laws, and with respect to said land the Fall River Redevelopment Authority shall enjoy the statutory authority it would possess for land and structures and other property within an urban renewal project as defined by section 1 of said chapter 121B. The lack of available industrial land in Fall River and Freetown is detrimental to the economic welfare of the citizens of the commonwealth and, in particular, the city of Fall River and the town of Freetown.

The Fall River Redevelopment Authority and the town of Freetown are hereby authorized to enter into an inter-governmental agreement with respect to the development of the portion of 300 acres of land which is located within the town of Freetown and shall be subject to a mutually agreeable inter-governmental between the Fall River Redevelopment Authority and the town of Freetown with respect to said Freetown land as described in section 1 and conveyed by section 2 of this act, which both the authority and the town mutually agree said authority shall be subject to with respect to said land.

SECTION 3. The consideration to the commonwealth for the conveyance as authorized by section 2 by the Fall River Redevelopment Authority shall be (1) the conveyance of a conservation restriction on approximately 4,300 acres of land in the city of Fall River to the commonwealth, (2) mitigation impacts on the Freetown-Fall River State Forest from the Fall River Redevelopment Authority's proposed development of the 300 acres, the so-called Fall River Business Park, and (3) the requirement that the Fall River Redevelopment Authority create an appropriate buffer zone of approximately 43 acres between its proposed development and the remaining land of the Freetown-Fall River State Forest, as described in the "Memorandum Of Understanding To Create The Southeastern Massachusetts Bioreserve" dated June 29, 2000, said buffer zone to fall within the 300 acres to be conveyed by this act. In addition, the Fall River Redevelopment Authority shall contribute up to $2,450,000 dollars to the Trustees of Reservations for purchase of open space at the direction of the director of the department of environmental affairs, the open space acquired will be partial mitigation for said 300 acres conveyed, and shall be held by the commonwealth under the care, custody, and control of the department of environmental management and/or division of fisheries and wildlife.

The city of Fall River, by and through its Watuppa Water Board and its municipal subdivisions and boards, may convey to the commonwealth a conservation restriction, as defined in sections 31 and 32 of chapter 184 of the General Laws, on approximately 4,300 acres of land now held by said city or said board for water supply purposes, as described on the PLan of the Southeastern Massachusetts Bioreserve attached to the Memorandum Of Understand To Create The Southeastern Bioreserve dated June 29, 2000, and to be more fully described on a survey to be prepared by the department of environmental management, the department of fisheries, wildlife and law enforcement and the division of fisheries and wildlife, if required. Said 4,300 acres of land shall be owned in fee by the city of Fall River, by and through its Watuppa Water Board, subject to rights created by the conservation restriction to be held by the department of environmental management, the department of fisheries, wildlife and environmental law and the division of fisheries and wildlife. Said conservation restriction shall provide for habitat and forestry management, public access and passive recreation consistent with water supply protection. The land subject to the conservation restriction will be managed by the city of Fall River, acting through the Watuppa Water Board, pursuant to the Bioreserve Management Plan as may be subsequently amended by the parties, as described in the "Memorandum Of Understanding To Create The Southeastern Massachusetts Bioreserve" dated June 29, 2000.

SECTION 4. The Fall River Redevelopment Authority shall pay the costs of all appraisals, surveys, title reports, environmental assessments, environmental impact reports and similar filings, if necessary, associated with the acquisition and development of the land to be acquired by said Fall River Redevelopment Authority as authorized by sections 2 and 3.

SECTION 5. The commissioner of capital asset management and maintenance shall prior to the execution of the conveyances authorized by this act submit the "Memorandum Of Understanding To Create The Southeastern Massachusetts Bioreserve" dated June 29, 2000, and a report thereon to the inspector general for his review and comment. Said inspector general shall review and comment on said memorandum of understanding, and said review shall include an examination of the methodology utilized for said memorandum of understanding. The inspector general shall prepare a report of his review and file said report with the commissioner for submission by said commissioner to the house and senate committees on ways and means and the chairmen of the joint committee on state administration. Said commissioner shall submit copies of said memorandum of understanding, his report, and the inspector general review and comment to the said commissioner to the house and senate committees on ways and means and the chairmen of the joint committee on state administration prior to the execution of the conveyances authorized by sections 2 and 3 of this act.

SECTION 6. The department of fisheries, wildlife and environmental law enforcement and its division of fisheries and wildlife may convey, in consultation with the division of capital asset management and maintenance, to the department of environmental management, an undivided > interest in approximately 2,414 acres of land shown as parcels 3 to 7, inclusive, on a plan of land entitled "Plan of Land In Dartmouth, Fall River and Freetown Massachusetts surveyed for Ascushnet Saw Mills Co." dated September 29, 1981, prepared by Arthur C. Thompson, Inc. of 52 Mill Street Marion, Massachusetts as revised July 22, 1998, sheets 3 and 4, recorded with the Bristol County Fall River District Registry of Deeds in Plan Book 115, Pages 7-11, that was acquired from Peter J. Hawes, et al., on June 30, 2000 by said department of fisheries, wildlife and environmental law enforcement in conjunction with partial funding and other assistance provided by said department of environmental management.

SECTION 7. In the event that the parcels comprising 300 acres conveyed by section 1 cease to be used by the Fall River Redevelopment Authority and the developers selected and any other subsequent owners for the purposes described in said section 3 at any time then, upon notice by the commissioner of the division of capital asset management and maintenance, said parcels shall revert to the commonwealth upon such terms and conditions as said commissioner may determine, and shall be assigned to the care, custody and control of the department of environmental management, in addition the conservation restriction conveyed to the commonwealth shall, by its terms, revert back to the city of Fall River in the event that both (1) the Fall River Redevelopment Authority sends written notice to said commissioner of termination of this land conveyance prior to January 1, 2007 and (2) the Fall River Redevelopment Authority, in consideration for repayment of up to the $2,450,000 described in section 3, reconveys to the commonwealth the 300 acres of land in the same condition, except for changes caused by nature, as of the date of the original conveyance from the commonwealth to said authority in which event the land described in section 1 is to be returned to the commonwealth under the care and control of the department of environmental management as part of the Freetown-Fall River State Forest. Should said parcels comprising the 300 acres revert to the commonwealth, any further disposition thereof shall be subject to the provisions of 40E to 40J, inclusive, of chapter 7 of the General Laws and to the prior approval of the general court.

SECTION 8. This act shall take effect upon its passage.

Approved August 10, 2002.