2019 Arkansas Code
Title 27 - Transportation
Subtitle 6 - Bridges and Ferries
Chapter 89 - Interstate Compacts
Subchapter 3 - Arkansas-Mississippi Great River Bridge Construction Compact
§ 27-89-301. Text of Compact

Universal Citation: AR Code § 27-89-301 (2019)
  • The Chairman of the State Highway Commission of the State of Arkansas, acting on behalf of this state, is authorized to execute a compact, to be known as the “Arkansas-Mississippi Great River Bridge Construction Compact,” in substantially the following form, with the State of Mississippi, and the General Assembly signifies in advance its approval and ratification of such compact, to wit:

        • ARTICLE I

          • The purpose of this Compact is to promote the construction of a highway bridge or a combined highway-railroad bridge connecting the States of Mississippi and Arkansas at or near Rosedale, Mississippi; and McGehee and Dumas, Arkansas, and to establish a joint interstate authority to assist in these efforts.
        • ARTICLE II

          • This Compact shall become effective immediately as to the States ratifying it whenever the States of Arkansas and Mississippi have ratified it and Congress has given consent thereto.
        • ARTICLE III

          • (a) The States which are parties to this Compact (hereinafter referred to as “party states”) do hereby establish and create a joint agency which shall be known as the Arkansas-Mississippi Great River Bridge Authority (hereinafter referred to as “the authority”). The membership of each authority shall consist of five (5) representatives from the State of Mississippi, to be selected in such manner as may be provided by the laws enacted by the Legislature of the State of Mississippi, and five (5) members from the State of Arkansas, to be selected in such manner as determined by laws enacted by the Arkansas General Assembly. The terms of the members of such authority from each of the party states, the method of appointing successor members, and the method of filling vacancies on the authorities of the party states, shall be determined by the laws of Mississippi and Arkansas.

          • (b) The members of the authority shall not be compensated for services on the authority, but each member shall be entitled to actual and reasonable expenses incurred in attending meetings or incurred otherwise in the performance of his/her duties as a member of the authority.

          • (c) The members of the authority shall meet upon the call of the chairman and hold such other meetings as its business may require. Special meetings of the authority may be called by the chairman or upon written request of a majority of the members of the authority from each of the party states. The authority shall choose annually a chairman and vice chairman from its members, and the chairmanship shall rotate each year among the party states, in order of their acceptance of this compact.

          • (d) The secretary of the authority (hereinafter provided for) shall notify each member in writing of all meetings of the authority in such a manner and under such rules and regulations as the authority may prescribe.

          • (e) The authority shall adopt rules and regulations for the transaction of its business; and the secretary shall keep a record of all its business and shall furnish a copy thereof to each member of the authority.

          • (f) It shall be the duty of the authority, in general, to promote, encourage, and coordinate the efforts of the party states to secure the development of the Arkansas-Mississippi Great River Bridge at or near Rosedale, Mississippi and McGehee-Dumas, Arkansas. Toward this end, the authority shall have power to:

            • (i) Hold hearings;

            • (ii) Conduct studies and surveys of all problems, benefits, and other matters associated with the construction of the Arkansas-Mississippi Great River Bridge, and to make reports thereon;

            • (iii) Acquire by gift, grant or otherwise, from local, state, federal, or private sources, such money or property as may be provided for the proper performance of their function, and to hold and dispose of the same;

            • (iv) Cooperate with other public or private groups, whether local, state, regional, or national, having an interest in the bridge construction;

            • (v) Formulate and execute plans and policies for emphasizing the purpose of this Compact before the Congress of the United States and other appropriate officers and agencies of the United States; and

            • (vi) Negotiate with one or more railroads in the State of Mississippi and the State of Arkansas, and with the appropriate federal authorities for the construction of the Arkansas-Mississippi Great River Bridge as a combined highway-railroad bridge, with the cost of the railroad portion of the bridge to be provided from sources other than funds of the two party states, unless moneys to defray part or all of the cost of constructing such railroad portion of the bridge is appropriated by the legislatures of the party states. If necessary, the authority may enter into a contract with one or more railroads and/or the appropriate agencies of Congress to borrow funds for the construction of such railroad portion of the bridge, to be reimbursed, including all costs of principal, interest and other costs in connection with such indebtedness, by revenues derived from rental fees, grants, or other charges, with such indebtedness to be secured solely by a pledge of such revenues, and such indebtedness shall not be an obligation upon the revenues or the full faith and credit of the party states to this compact, unless laws authorizing such pledge are enacted by the party states;

            • (vii) Exercise such other powers as may be appropriate to enable it to accomplish its functions and duties in connection with the construction of the Arkansas-Mississippi Great River Bridge as a highway bridge or a combined highway-railroad bridge, and to carry out the purposes of this compact.

        • ARTICLE IV

          • The authority shall appoint a secretary, who shall be a person familiar with the nature, procedures, and significance of the bridge construction and the informational, educational, and publicity methods of stimulating general interest in such developments, and who shall be the compact administrator. The term of office of the secretary shall be at the pleasure of the authority and such officer shall receive such compensation as the authority shall prescribe. The secretary shall maintain custody of the authority's books, records, and papers, which shall be kept by the secretary at the office of the authority, and shall perform all functions and duties and exercise all powers and authorities which may be delegated to the secretary of the authority.
        • ARTICLE V

          • Each party state agrees that its legislature may, in its discretion, from time to time make available and pay over to the authority funds for the establishment and operation of the authority. The contribution of each party state will be in equal amounts.
        • ARTICLE VI

          • Nothing in this compact shall be construed so as to conflict with any existing statute, or to limit the powers of any party state, or to repeal or prevent legislation, or to authorize or permit curtailment or diminution of any other bridge project, or to affect any existing or future cooperative arrangement or relationship between any federal agency and a party state.
        • ARTICLE VII

          • This compact shall continue in force and remain binding upon each party state until the legislature or governor of each or either state takes into action to withdraw therefrom; provided that such withdrawal shall not become effective until six (6) months after the date of the action taken by the legislature or governor. Notice of such action shall be given to the other party state or states by the secretary of state of the party state which takes such action.
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