§ 42-82-3. Agricultural lands preservation commission.
(a)(1) There is established the agricultural lands preservation commission consisting of the directors of the department of environmental management and the department of administration, or their respective designees, both ex officio with the power to vote; and seven (7) public members to be appointed by the governor with the advice and consent of the senate. The public appointees shall include at least two (2) members with knowledge or experience in agriculture, one member familiar with land use and community planning issues, one member active in land preservation. All gubernatorial appointments made under this section after January 1, 2005 shall be subjected to the advice and consent of the senate. No person shall be eligible for appointment pursuant to this section after the effective date of this act [April 20, 2006] unless he or she is a resident of this state.
(2) The members appointed by the governor shall serve for terms of five (5) years each; provided, however, that of the members first appointed, one shall serve for one year, one shall serve for two (2) years, one shall serve for three (3) years, one shall serve for four (4) years, and two (2) shall serve for five (5) years, from January first next succeeding their appointment, as the governor shall designate; provided, however, that those members of the commission as of the effective date of this act [April 20, 2006] who were appointed upon the recommendation of members of the general assembly shall cease to be members of the commission on the effective date of this act [April 20, 2006].
(3) Any vacancy occurring otherwise than by expiration of term shall be filled in the same manner as the original appointment.
(4) Upon expiration of a member's term, that member shall continue as a member until that member's successor is appointed and qualified. Any person serving a term shall be eligible for appointment.
(5) No member, including ex-officio members, shall receive compensation for the performance of his or her duties as a member; provided, however, that each appointed member may be reimbursed if funds are appropriated for his or her actual and necessary expenses incurred during the performance of his or her official duties.
(6) [Deleted by P.L. 2006, ch. 22, § 5 and P.L. 2006, ch. 27, § 5].
(7) The commission shall designate annually from its members a chairperson and a vice chairperson.
(8) Whenever public hearings are required under this chapter, or whenever the commission determines a public hearing is appropriate, the commission shall use reasonable efforts to hold those hearings at a place or places that will reasonably accommodate the interested parties.
(b) Five (5) voting members of the commission shall constitute a quorum for the transaction of any business or the exercise of any power of the commission. Except as otherwise provided in this chapter, the commission shall have the power to act by a majority of the members present at any meeting at which a quorum is in attendance.
(c) The governor may remove any member for cause or misconduct in office after giving him or her a copy of the charges against him or her and an opportunity to be heard, in person or by counsel, in his or her defense, upon not less than ten (10) days notice. If any member shall be removed, the governor shall file in the office of the secretary of state a complete statement of charges made against the member and his or her findings, together with a complete record of the proceedings.
(P.L. 1981, ch. 299, § 1; P.L. 1989, ch. 243, § 1; P.L. 2006, ch. 22, § 5; P.L. 2006, ch. 27, § 5; P.L. 2008, ch. 25, § 1; P.L. 2008, ch. 30, § 1.)