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      RS 30:2456     


§2456. General powers and duties of the coordinator

            A. The coordinator, under the direction and control of the deputy secretary for public safety services, shall:

            (1) Develop a statewide oil spill prevention and response plan, taking into account the rules being developed by the federal government in accordance with the federal Oil Pollution Act of 1990 (P.L. 101-380) and similar plans being developed by other states.

            (2) Provide a coordinated response effort from all appropriate state agencies in the event of an unauthorized or threatened discharge of oil affecting or potentially affecting the land, coastal waters, or any other waters of Louisiana.

            (3) Coordinate the operational implementation and maintenance of the oil spill prevention program as provided in this Chapter.

            (4) Administer a fund to provide for funding these activities.

            (5) Provide clear delineation for state coordinated response efforts in relation to jurisdictional authorities and use of state and federal funds for removal costs under the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act of 1980 (42 U.S.C. §§ 9601 et seq.), Water Pollution Control Act (33 U.S.C. §§ 321 et seq.), and the Oil Pollution Act of 1990 (P.L. 101-380).

            B. The coordinator, in consultation with the interagency council, as provided in this Chapter, shall adopt and promulgate rules necessary and convenient to the administration of this Chapter in accordance with the Louisiana Administrative Procedure Act.

            C. The coordinator shall by rule establish procedures under the Louisiana Administrative Procedure Act for all hearings required by this Chapter. The coordinator is hereby authorized to administer oaths, receive evidence, issue subpoenas to compel attendance of witnesses and production of evidence related to hearings, and make findings of fact and decisions with respect to administering this Chapter.

            D.(1) The coordinator may contract with any public agency or private person or other entity, including entering into cooperative agreements with the federal government, acquire and dispose of nonresponse related real or personal property, delegate responsibility for implementing the requirements of this Chapter, and perform any other act within or without the boundaries of this state necessary to administer this Chapter.

            (2) The coordinator may enter into any contracts for the purchase of goods or for services in accordance with the Louisiana Procurement Code and in consultation with the interagency council, including the emergency procurement procedures provided in R.S. 39:1598.

            (3) Contracts entered into by the coordinator for legally sensitive services provided by scientists, including but not limited to biologists, geologists, ecologists, and chemists; economists; sociologists; modeling experts; statisticians; cultural resource experts; or other such practitioners to assist the state in the assessment and quantification of damages pursuant to the provisions of the Oil Pollution Act of 1990 (OPA), 33 U.S.C. 2701, et seq., the Oil Spill Prevention and Response Act of 1991 (OSPRA), R.S. 30:2451 et seq., or regulations promulgated pursuant to either, shall be deemed professional services contracts pursuant to Chapter 17 of Subtitle III of Title 39 of the Louisiana Revised Statutes of 1950 and regulations promulgated pursuant thereto.

            E.(1) If the coordinator finds it necessary to enter property to conduct a vessel or terminal-facility audit, inspection, or drill authorized under this Chapter or to respond to an actual or threatened unauthorized discharge, the coordinator or his authorized agents, employees, contractors, or subcontractors, may enter the property after making a reasonable effort to obtain consent to enter the property.

            (2) The coordinator and his authorized agents, employees, contractors, and subcontractors shall also have the power to enter upon any lands, waters, and premises in the state for the purpose of conducting assessment activities and studies, including surveys and sampling efforts, authorized under this Chapter. Such entry shall not be deemed a civil or criminal trespass, a temporary construction servitude, nor an entry under any eminent domain proceedings which may be then pending. Except for instances in which the coordinator deems it necessary to immediately enter lands, waters, or premises to prevent the loss of ephemeral information, the coordinator shall provide prior written notice of five days to resident owners and fifteen days to nonresident owners to the last recorded property owner as reflected in the parish assessment rolls. Written notice shall consist of notice by certified mail to the last known address of the owner as shown in the current assessment records. The coordinator shall indemnify the property owner for any loss or injury resultant from entry upon the property and shall make reimbursement for any actual damages resulting to lands, waters, and premises as a result of these activities.

            Acts 1991, 1st Ex. Sess., No. 7, §1, eff. April 23, 1991; Acts 1995, No. 740, §1; Acts 2009, No. 409, §2, eff. July 1, 2009; Acts 2012, No. 832, §1; Acts 2014, No. 864, §§4 and 5.

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