Governor: Massachusetts to Send by Overnight Mail Nearly $600,000 in Back Flood Control Payments

For Immediate Release
Friday, July 7, 2006

Contact: Communications Director
Office of the Governor

Governor Applauds Partial Payments as a Good-Faith Gesture

CONCORD - Gov. John Lynch announced that Massachusetts promised today to send by overnight mail nearly $600,000 in back payments for the Merrimack River Valley Flood Control project.

"I appreciate Gov. Romney and Massachusetts moving swiftly to make these partial payments. I see this as a good-faith gesture, and I am hopeful that we will see a continued commitment from the Commonwealth to make up the remainder of the money owed to New Hampshire under the compact," Gov. Lynch said.

The legal counsel for Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney today told Gov. Lynch> '> s legal counsel that the Commonwealth of Massachusetts would be sending by overnight mail partial payments for three years. Massachusetts acknowledged missing payments for three years.

New Hampshire and Massachusetts entered the Merrimack River Valley Flood Control Compact in 1957. Under the Compact, Massachusetts agreed to reimburse New Hampshire 70 percent of the amount of property taxes lost because of the acquisition and ownership of the dams and reservoirs comprising the Merrimack River Valley Flood Control Project.

Massachusetts has not paid the full amount due under the Compact in more than a decade, and has failed to appoint membership to the Board of Arbitration established in the compact to settle any disputes on the amount owed.

"While we must still address the issue of more than $2 million in underpayments, I am pleased to see that there seems to be a new commitment on behalf of Massachusetts to resolving this issue," Gov. Lynch said.