§ 2-4-12. Powers of districts and directors.
A conservation district organized under the provisions of this chapter shall constitute a subdivision of the state conservation committee, a quasi-public corporation exercising public powers, and the district, and directors of the conservation district, shall have the following powers, in addition to other(s) granted in sections of this chapter:
(1) To conduct surveys, investigations and research relating to the conservation of renewable natural resources and preventive and control measures and the works of improvement needed, and to publish the results of those surveys, investigations, or research and to disseminate information concerning those preventive and control measures. In order to avoid duplication of research activities, no district shall initiate any research program except in cooperation with the government of this state or any of its agencies, or with the United States or any of its agencies;
(2) To develop necessary guidelines deemed necessary for the conservation of renewable natural resources of the district. In cooperation with the state committee, develop and formulate statewide guidelines deemed necessary for the conservation of the renewable natural resources of the state; encourage local government to implement those guidelines in the planning and development of renewable natural resources under their jurisdiction; and offer any available technical and other assistance necessary to local government for this purpose.
(3) To conduct educational and demonstrational projects within the district on lands owned or controlled by this state or any of its agencies, with the cooperation of the agency administering and having jurisdiction of these lands, and of any other lands within the district upon obtaining the consent of the occupier of the lands or the necessary rights or interests in the lands, in order to demonstrate by example the means, methods, measures and works of improvement by which the conservation of renewable natural resources may be carried out;
(4) To carry out preventive and control measures and works of improvement for the conservation of renewable natural resources within the district on lands owned or controlled by this state or any of its agencies, with the cooperation of the agency administering and having jurisdiction of these lands, and on any other lands within the district upon obtaining the consent of the occupier of the lands or the necessary rights or interests in the lands;
(5) To cooperate, or enter into agreements with, and within the limits of appropriations made available to it by law, to furnish financial or other aid to any agency, governmental or otherwise, or any occupier of lands within the district, in carrying on of preventive and control measures and works of improvement for the conservation of renewable natural resources within the district, subject to any conditions that the directors may deem necessary to advance the purposes of this chapter;
(6) To obtain options upon and to acquire, by purchase, exchange, lease, gift, bequest, grant, or devise, any property, real or personal or rights or interests to maintain, administer, and improve any properties acquired, to receive income from those properties and to expend income from those properties in carrying out the purposes and provisions of this chapter; and to sell, lease, or otherwise dispose of any of its property or interests in furtherance of the purposes and the provisions of this chapter;
(7) To make available, on any terms it shall prescribe, to land occupiers, cities or towns, municipalities or the state within the district, machinery, equipment, materials and any other services that will assist those land occupiers, cities or towns, municipalities, or the state to carry on operations upon their lands for the conservation of renewable natural resources;
(8) To construct, improve, repair, operate and maintain any structures or other works of improvement that may be necessary or convenient for the performance of any of the operations or activities authorized in this chapter;
(9) To prepare and keep current a long-range program for the conservation of all of the renewable natural resources of the district. The program is directed toward the conservation of resources for their best uses and in a manner that will best meet the needs of the district and the state, taking into consideration, where appropriate, such uses as farming, grazing, timber supply, forest, parks, outdoor recreation, water supplies for urban and rural areas; water for agricultural and industrial uses, watershed protection, control of soil erosion, retardation of water runoff, flood prevention and control, protection of open space and scenery, preservation of natural beauty, protection of fish and wildlife, the prevention or reduction of sedimentation and other pollution in rivers, streams, reservoirs, and the protection of groundwaters, and the location of urban facilities and structures that will fit the needs of the state and be consistent with the best uses of the renewable natural resources of the state. The program includes an inventory of all renewable natural resources in the district, a compilation of current resource needs, projections of future resource requirements, priorities for various resource activities, projected timetables, descriptions of available alternatives, and provisions for coordination with other resource programs; to prepare an annual work plan, which shall describe the action programs, services, facilities, materials, working arrangements and estimated funds needed to carry out the parts of the long-range program that are of the highest priorities. Each district shall submit to the state committee a copy of its long-range program and annual work plans for review and comment;
(10) To acquire, by purchase, lease, or otherwise any property, real or personal, and to administer any project or program concerning the conservation of renewable natural resources located within its boundaries undertaken by federal, state, or other public agency; to manage as agent of the federal, state or other public agency any project or program concerned with the conservation of renewable natural resources located within its boundaries; to act as agent of the federal, state, or other public agency in connection with the acquisition, construction, operation, or administration of any program or project concerning the conservation of renewable natural resources within its boundaries;
(11) To accept donations, gifts, and contributions in money, services, materials, or otherwise, from the United States or any of its agencies, from this state or any of its agencies, or from any other source, and to use or expend those moneys, services, materials or other contributions in carrying out the purposes of this chapter; and
(12) To have perpetual succession unless terminated or hereinafter provided; to make and execute contracts and other instruments, necessary or convenient to the exercise of its powers; to make, and from time to time amend and repeal, regulations and rules not inconsistent with this chapter; to carry into effect its purposes and powers.
(G.L. 1956, § 2-4-12; P.L. 1972, ch. 173, § 2; P.L. 1985, ch. 179, § 1.)