1997 Regular Session
By: Representative Johnson
House Bill 1476
(As Sent to Governor)
AN ACT TO AMEND SECTION 37-41-31, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, TO INCREASE THE MAXIMUM TERM OF PRIVATE CONTRACTS THAT LOCAL SCHOOL BOARDS MAY ENTER FOR THE TRANSPORTATION OF PUPILS; TO INCREASE THE MAXIMUM LENGTH OF TIME THAT THE STATE BOARD OF EDUCATION MAY APPROVE SUCH CONTRACTS TO BE EXTENDED; AND FOR RELATED PURPOSES.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MISSISSIPPI:
SECTION 1. Section 37-41-31, Mississippi Code of 1972, is amended as follows:
37-41-31. In each case where pupils are transported to and from the public schools in this state in privately owned vehicles, the contract for such transportation shall be let to the lowest responsible bidder who is able to furnish a solvent bond for the faithful performance of his contract. This shall be done after each route over which such pupils are to be transported has been laid out and established as provided in this chapter. Such contracts shall be awarded upon receipt of sealed bids or proposals after the time and place of letting such contracts and the manner of bidding shall have been duly advertised in some newspaper published in said county once each week for three (3) consecutive weeks, with the first publication thereof to be made not less than fifteen (15) days nor more than twenty-one (21) days prior to the date on which such contracts are to be awarded. If no newspaper be published in such county, then said advertisement shall be made by publication for the required time in some newspaper having a general circulation therein, and, in addition, by posting a copy thereof for said time in at least three (3) public places in said county, one (1) of which shall be at the county courthouse in each judicial district of the county. The awarding of all such contracts shall, however, in all respects be subject to the provisions of Section 37-41-29.
Private contracts for the transportation of exceptional children, as defined in Section 37-23-3, may be negotiated by the local school board without the necessity of the advertising for or taking of bids. The same may apply under extraordinary circumstances where regular transportation is considered to be impractical, with prior approval of the State Department of Education. The local school board may negotiate and contract for the transportation described in this paragraph so long as the local school board complies with the school transportation regulations promulgated by the State Board of Education.
Contracts shall be made for four (4) years, at the discretion of the local school board. Any and all bids may be rejected. At the expiration of any transportation contract, if the school board believes a route should remain substantially as established and finds that the carrier thereon has rendered efficient and satisfactory services it may, with the approval of the State Board of Education, extend the contract for not more than four (4) years, subject, however, to the provisions of Section 37-41-29.
SECTION 2. This act shall take effect and be in force from and after July 1, 1997.