The office of water resources is hereby designated as the water pollution control agency for this state for all purposes of federal legislation and is hereby authorized to take all action necessary or appropriate to secure to this state the benefits of said legislation. In carrying out the purposes of this section, the chief is hereby authorized to cooperate with the United States environmental protection agency and other agencies of the federal government, other states, interstate agencies and other interested parties in all matters relating to water pollution, including the development of programs for controlling and reducing water pollution and improving the sanitary conditions of the waters of the state; to apply for and receive, on behalf of this state, funds made available under the aforesaid federal legislation on condition that all moneys received from any federal agency as herein provided shall be paid into the state treasury and shall be expended, under the direction of the director, solely for purposes for which the grants are made; to approve projects for which applications for loans or grants under the federal legislation are made by any municipality (including any city, town, district or other public body created by or pursuant to the laws of this state and having jurisdiction over the disposal of sewage, industrial wastes or other wastes) or agency of this state or by any interstate agency; and to participate through authorized representatives in proceedings under the federal legislation to recommend measures for the abatement of water pollution originating in this state. The governor may give consent on behalf of this state to requests by the administrator of the United States environmental protection agency to the attorney general of the United States for the bringing of actions for the abatement of such pollution. Whenever a federal law requires the approval or recommendation of a state agency or any political subdivision of the state in any matter relating to the water resources of the state, the director, subject to approval of the Legislature, is hereby designated as the sole person to give the approval or recommendation required by the federal law, unless the federal law specifically requires the approval or recommendation of some other state agency or political subdivision of the state.
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