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Session Law

2013

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Chapter 169 AN ACT TO CLARIFY THE JOINT USE AND OPERATION OF SPECTACLE ISLAND.

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. (a) All words and terms in this act shall have the same meaning as they do in the federal land act of 1996, unless the context clearly requires otherwise; provided, however, the following words, shall have the following meanings unless the context clearly requires otherwise:

“Federal land act of 1996”, the federal Omnibus Parks and Public Lands Management Act of 1996, section 1029 of Public Law 104-333, 16 U.S.C. section 460kkk, as amended.

“Owners”, the commonwealth of Massachusetts, department of conservation and recreation, the city of Boston and the parks and recreation department of the city of Boston.

“Park”, Spectacle Island Park, located in Boston Harbor.

“Recreation area”, the Boston Harbor Islands National Recreation Area.

(b) Spectacle Island is hereby established as Spectacle Island Park. The park is a public open space containing at mean low water approximately 121 acres of land and certain improvements, including without limitation a visitor center, pier and marina. The park is part of the Boston Harbor Islands National Recreation Area, which was established by the federal land act of 1996 for the benefit of the public.

The recreation area is administered by the National Park Service, the commonwealth of Massachusetts, the city of Boston and others in accordance with the law that is generally applicable to units of the National Park System. The Boston Harbor Islands Partnership, which was established by the federal land act of 1996, coordinates the activities of federal, state and local authorities and the private sector in the development and implementation of a management plan for the recreation area.

The federal land act of 1996 provides that the establishment of the recreation area does not "diminish, enlarge, or modify any right of the commonwealth of Massachusetts or any political subdivision thereof to exercise civil and criminal jurisdiction or to carry out state laws, rules and regulations within the recreation area."

SECTION 2. Notwithstanding chapters 7, 29 and 30B of the General Laws or any other general or special law to the contrary, the owners may jointly operate, manage, control and improve the park. The purpose of the joint management is to ensure the consistent and effective management, maintenance and operation of the park, including the delivery of programs, activities and events for the educational, scientific, recreation and conservation benefit of the public.

Included in the joint operation and management is the authority of the owners, together or separately, to expend funds for the purposes set forth in this act without regard to the location or area of implementation within the park that the activity will occur or the use that will be made, including on land or property of the other owner, together with the authority to jointly or severally execute and deliver contracts or other agreements for improvement of the park, including without limitation contracts for site work, building construction and repair, fabrication or installation of temporary or permanent buildings or structures, utilities, conduits, equipment, vegetation or plantings, or other fixtures, infrastructure or improvements to the park and for repair of the same. The owners may: jointly or severally execute and deliver contracts or other agreements to purchase equipment, materials and supplies for the park, including vehicles or vessels, and for repair of the same; jointly or severally execute and deliver contracts or other agreements with and to each other or to others for the delivery or performance of programs, activities and events for the educational, scientific, recreation and conservation benefit of the public, including without limitation applications for, issuance or execution of grant agreements, contracts, or special permits or licenses for the operation of concessions or private functions and events; jointly or severally execute and deliver contracts or other agreements for the provision of transportation to, from or within the park; jointly or severally execute and deliver contracts or other agreements for monitoring and maintenance of the landfill and its components located on Spectacle Island; and carry out their respective obligations under existing memoranda and agreements between the department of conservation and recreation, the Massachusetts department of transportation, and the city of Boston relating thereto, and, with regard to all such contracts, agreements and memoranda, to reimburse the other owner for costs incurred for the joint operation and management of the park or the landfill. Notwithstanding the foregoing, the owners shall continue their management obligations and responsibilities in the park in accordance with their respective mandates and enabling authority and shall operate and develop the park in accordance with those mandates and authority and this act using best management practices, systems and technologies.

SECTION 3. Nothing in this act shall be interpreted to relieve the owners from procuring goods or services in accordance with applicable public bidding laws and requirements, but the owners may do so without regard to the location or area of implementation in the park on which those goods or services are provided.

SECTION 4. Nothing in this act shall be interpreted to require or obligate either owner to transfer funds to the other or to any other party, or expend funds or provide services not otherwise agreed to or approved by the respective owner, or not otherwise supported by accounts or appropriations available to an owner.

SECTION 5. Unless otherwise provided by written agreement of the owners, all capital or site improvements now or in the future constructed or located in the park shall be a real property asset of the owner of the land upon which the improvement is made, without regard to by whom the improvements were constructed or paid. Nothing in this act shall be interpreted to authorize an owner to seek to or to dispose of, lease, encumber, grant temporary or permanent rights in, construct on, occupy, or to otherwise affect any property or property interest of the other owner without the participation and consent of the other owner; provided further that no owner may dispose of, lease, encumber, or grant temporary or permanent rights in the park without the approval of the other owner.

SECTION 6. Nothing in this act shall modify, amend, limit or interfere with the rights or responsibilities of the owners, the Massachusetts department of transportation, or any other participating party in construction or management of the central artery third harbor tunnel project and, in particular, the landfill or landfill closure or monitoring activities and mitigation and permitting requirements on Spectacle Island, or any installations or equipment associated therewith.

Approved, November 26, 2013.


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