1997 Regular Session
To: Ways and Means
By: Representative Reynolds
House Bill 1577
AN ACT TO BRING FORWARD, FOR PURPOSES OF AMENDMENT, SECTIONS 25-43-6, 25-43-7, 27-1-19, 27-3-31, 27-3-51, 27-35-15, 27-35-50, 27-35-113 AND 27-39-329, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, WHICH RELATE TO ASSESSMENTS OF PROPERTY FOR AD VALOREM TAX PURPOSES; AND FOR RELATED PURPOSES.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MISSISSIPPI:
SECTION 1. Section 25-43-6, Mississippi Code of 1972, brought forward as follows:
25-43-6. (1) Prior to giving the notice required in Section 25-43-7, each agency proposing the adoption of a rule or significant amendment of an existing rule imposing a duty, responsibility or requirement on any person shall consider the economic impact the rule will have on the citizens of our state and the benefits the rule will cause to accrue to those citizens. For purposes of this section, a "significant amendment" means any amendment to a rule for which the total aggregate cost to all persons required to comply with that rule exceeds One Hundred Thousand Dollars ($100,000.00).
(2) Each agency shall prepare a written report providing an economic impact statement for the adoption of a rule or significant amendment to an existing rule imposing a duty, responsibility or requirement on any person, except as provided in subsection (4) of this section. The economic impact statement shall include the following:
(a) A description of the need for and the benefits which will likely accrue as the result of the proposed action;
(b) An estimate of the cost to the agency, and to any other state or local government entities, of implementing and enforcing the proposed action, including the estimated amount of paperwork, and any anticipated effect on state or local revenues;
(c) An estimate of the cost or economic benefit to all persons directly affected by the proposed action;
(d) An analysis of the impact of the rule on small business;
(e) A comparison of the costs and benefits of the proposed rule to the probable costs and benefits of not adopting the proposed rule or significantly amending an existing rule;
(f) A determination of whether less costly methods or less intrusive methods exist for achieving the purpose of the proposed rule where reasonable alternative methods exist which are not precluded by law;
(g) A description of reasonable alternative methods, where applicable, for achieving the purpose of the proposed action which were considered by the agency and a statement of reasons for rejecting those alternatives in favor of the proposed rule; and
(h) A detailed statement of the data and methodology used in making estimates required by this subsection.
(3) No rule or regulation shall be declared invalid based on a challenge to the economic impact statement for the rule unless the issue is raised in administrative proceedings before the agency. No person shall have standing to challenge a rule, based upon the economic impact statement or lack thereof, unless that person provided the agency with information sufficient to make the agency aware of specific concerns regarding the statement in a public meeting or hearing held by the agency or in written comments regarding the rule. The grounds for invalidation of an agency action, based upon the economic impact statement, are limited to the agency's failure to adhere to the procedure for preparation of the economic impact statement as provided in this section, or the agency's failure to consider information submitted to the agency regarding specific concerns about the statement, if that failure substantially impairs the fairness of the rule-making proceeding.
(4) This section does not apply to the adoption or significant amendment of:
(a) Any rule which is required by the federal government pursuant to a state/federal program delegation agreement or contract;
(b) Any rule which is expressly required by state law;
(c) An emergency rule adopted pursuant to Section 25-43-7(2); and
(d) Any rule for which the notice required in Section 25-43-7 has been given prior to the effective date of this act [Laws, 1995, ch. 499, eff. March 28, 1995].
SECTION 2. Section 25-43-7, Mississippi Code of 1972, is brought forward as follows:
25-43-7. (1) Prior to the adoption, amendment or repeal of any rule, the agency shall give at least thirty (30) days' notice of its intended action. The notice shall include a statement of either the terms or substance of the intended action or a description of the subjects and issues involved, and the manner in which interested persons may present their views thereon. The notice shall be filed with the Office of the Secretary of State and mailed by the agency to all persons who have made timely request of the agency for advance notice of its rule-making proceedings. The Secretary of State shall furnish copies at the request of any person and shall be reimbursed by the requesting person for the expense of providing such service.
(2) If an agency finds that an imminent peril to the public health, safety or welfare requires adoption of a rule upon fewer than thirty (30) days' notice and states in writing its reasons for that finding, it may proceed without prior notice of hearing or upon any abbreviated notice and hearing that it finds practicable to adopt an emergency rule. The rule may be effective for a period of not longer than one hundred twenty (120) days, renewable once for a period not exceeding ninety (90) days, but the adoption of an identical rule under subsection (1) of this section is not precluded.
(3) No rule hereafter adopted is valid unless adopted in substantial compliance with this section. A proceeding to contest any rule on the ground of noncompliance with the procedural requirements of this section must be commenced within one (1) year from the effective date of the rule.
SECTION 3. Section 27-1-19, Mississippi Code of 1972, is brought forward as follows:
27-1-19. The county assessor shall from time to time by personal inspection and examination, by himself or deputies, gather and record, in writing, any and all available data and information bearing upon the location, number, amount, kind and value of any and all property and persons which he is required by law to assess; and he shall keep a list of all persons subject to assessment in his county and shall note thereon all removals from the county or from one precinct to another within the county, and shall add thereto the names of all persons subject to assessment moving into his county. The information required to be collected and preserved shall be filed and systematically indexed and remain a permanent part of the record of the assessor's office in such manner that the same may be available for the use of the board of supervisors and other officials of the county and state performing duties with reference to the assessment of property and the collection of taxes.
Such records may be generated, filed, stored, retained, copied or reproduced by microfilm, microfiche, data processing, computers, magnetic tape, optical discs or any other electronic process which correctly and legibly stores and reproduces or which forms a medium for storing, copying or reproducing documents, files and records in addition to, or in lieu of the paper documents, files and records.
SECTION 4. Section 27-3-31, Mississippi Code of 1972, is brought forward as follows:
27-3-31. It shall specifically be the duty of the State Tax Commission, and it shall have power and authority:
(a) To adopt, amend or repeal those rules or regulations necessary to implement the duties assigned to the commission in this section.
(b) Each commissioner and authorized agent, and the secretary of the commission is empowered to administer and certify oaths.
(c) To confer with and advise assessing officers, boards of supervisors and other county officers as to their duties relative to taxation under the law; and to advise them in the collection, filing and preservation of data relative to matters of assessment.
(d) To prepare and have printed in pamphlet form full instructions governing the duties of and the application of the revenue laws of the state to county tax assessors, the clerk and members of the boards of supervisors, and to promptly advise such officers of all decisions of the Supreme Court relating to matters of revenue and taxation when such decisions affect the duties of such officers.
(e) To become familiar with property values and general conditions in the counties of the state and to direct the collection and preservation of data and information pertaining to the quantity and value of property in each county in the state, subject to assessment, necessary to enable the commission to determine the assessed value of classes of property and whether assessments comply with acceptable performance standards as required by Section 27-35-113.
(f) To direct the collection, preparation and preservation of data and information pertaining to the quantity, value and location of property belonging to railroads, persons, corporations and associations which is required to be assessed by the State Tax Commission.
(g) To supervise and direct the preparation of forms for the assessment of property of railroads and public service corporations assessed by the commission, and the filing of their rolls or schedules of assessment.
(h) To determine the location of all property subject to assessment by the commission in the various counties of the state, the municipalities and taxing districts therein, and to ascertain and report as far as practicable the value and ownership of all such property.
(i) To keep informed of the work of the assessors and supervisors of the various counties of the state as required by Section 27-3-51, and to have charge of the details necessary to the equalization by the commission of assessments among the various counties pursuant to Section 27-35-113.
(j) To prepare all forms for tax lists, assessment rolls and perform other duties relating thereto.
(k) To prepare data and statistics relating to property assessments which are deemed advisable for publication or which may be required by the Legislature.
(l) To confer with assessors, supervisors and other local taxing officials who may have business with the commission.
(m) To consider and approve or disapprove all orders of boards of supervisors making increases and decreases in assessments and orders of boards of supervisors granting homestead exemptions.
(n) To have jurisdiction of all taxpayer appeals from decisions on the chairman of the commission to the entire commission, to arrange the time and place of hearing and appeals, and to provide for the preparation and presentation to the full commission of all evidence, documents and other matters necessary and proper for a decision on the matters and questions involved in the appeal.
(o) To direct and supervise the preparation of any record to be filed in any court of the state.
(p) To attend to all appeals from decisions of the State Tax Commission to the courts, and cooperate with the Attorney General and district attorneys to the end that the interests of the state shall be presented fairly and properly to the courts, without undue delay.
(q) To administer and enforce the "Local Option Alcoholic Beverage Control Law," being Section 67-1-1 et seq., except as provided in Section 67-1-23.
(r) To adopt and enforce rules and regulations prescribing the manner and method by which tax returns and documents may be filed with the commission as provided under Section 27-3-83.
SECTION 5. Section 27-3-51, Mississippi Code of 1972, is brought forward as follows:
27-3-51. (1) In order that the members of the State Tax Commission may be familiar with the character and values of the several classes of property within each of the several counties of the state and of the economic conditions therein, and throughout the state, the Chairman of the State Tax Commission, or his designees, shall annually visit each of the several counties of the state. In the course of his visitation within each county, the Chairman of the State Tax Commission, or his designees, shall perform the duties enumerated in Sections 27-3-39 and 27-3-53, and he shall investigate the work and methods adopted by the board of supervisors and county tax assessors and confer with said officers and other well-informed persons, ascertain wherein existing laws are defective or improperly or negligently administered and shall be authorized to exercise the authority granted under Sections 27-1-21 and 27-1-23. Provided, however, that any language in Section 27-1-21 and Section 27-1-23 relative to the actual assessing or appraising of property by the county or municipal tax assessor is not granted to the State Tax Commission. He shall report the results of his investigation and the facts ascertained to the Governor, from time to time, when required by him, and to each session of the Legislature.
(2) The chancery clerk shall require that the current mailing address and current business or employment telephone number, if any, and current residential telephone number, if any, of each grantor and grantee be included on all deeds as a prerequisite for the deed to be filed for record after July 1, 1987. If the residential telephone number is unlisted, the grantor or grantee shall include on the deed a telephone number where he or she can be reached during business hours. If the grantee may receive mail at the address of the property transferred, then the address of the transferred property shall be the mailing address of the grantee for the purposes of this section. The information provided by the grantor and grantee shall be true and correct and complete to the best of his or her knowledge and belief under penalty of perjury under Section 97-9-61. The chancery clerk may refuse to accept delivery of any deed for filing that does not contain on the deed the information required in this section. The fact that the information provided by the grantor or grantee may be incorrect, incomplete or false, however, shall not invalidate the deed or the filing thereof for record. The State Tax Commission shall annually audit the deeds filed with the chancery clerk of each county and assess a penalty of One Hundred Dollars ($100.00) against the county for each deed filed in violation of this section, and the aggregate of said sum shall be withheld by the State Tax Commission from the next installment of homestead exemption reimbursement due under Section 27-33-41.
(3) The Chairman of the State Tax Commission or his designees is hereby authorized to verify sales data regarding the transfer of real property by obtaining such information from the grantor or grantee. The information provided by the grantor or grantee to the State Tax Commission or its designee shall be true, correct and complete to the best of his or her knowledge and belief under penalty of perjury under Section 97-9-61. Any information obtained in this manner shall be shared with the county tax assessors and used only for the purpose of valuing property.
(4) The State Tax Commission may request sales data of Class I and Class II property from the county tax assessors in order to develop sales ratios. If a county tax assessor fails to supply accurate information requested by the State Tax Commission, the commission shall reject the county's tax roll. The avails of the one (1) mill levy as provided for in Section 27-39-329(2)(b) shall not be expended until the county complies with such request.
SECTION 6. Section 27-35-15, Mississippi Code of 1972, is brought forward as follows:
27-35-15. (1) The tax assessors shall annually appraise all personal property subject to taxation in their respective counties at true value and assess it in proportion thereto. They shall set down in the assessment roll the names in full of all persons liable to taxation in the county in alphabetical order under each municipality, but firms or persons owning the same class of property may be listed on the roll together regardless of the alphabetical order. Where there are on the roll more than one (1) person of the same name, the place of residence of each shall be shown, or they shall be otherwise so designated as to identify each and distinguish them. The assessor shall set down each item of personal property liable to taxation and the amount of each individual's taxable property shall be totaled and set down in the column provided, opposite his name. The assessor shall so fill out the blanks on the rolls as to disclose clearly and fully all information indicated by the roll.
The tax assessor shall place in the columns provided on the roll the true value of the property owned by each taxpayer in every road district, school district, levee district or other special taxing district imposing an ad valorem tax; and he shall truly and correctly add every column on the roll and show in the proper column the total amount of property assessed to every taxpayer and the amount assessed to every taxpayer in each and every road district, school district or other special taxing district; and the totals of each column from every page shall be carried to the recapitulation on a page or pages in the back of the roll. The tax assessor shall add the recapitulation and show the total amount of all property assessed in his county and the total for each municipality, school district, road district, levee district or other special taxing district imposing an ad valorem tax. The assessor shall also show in his recapitulation the correct total of each and every column in the roll.
(2) The tax assessors shall include on the personal property roll the list of aircraft received from the State Tax Commission which are liable for registration but which have not been so registered as required by Title 61, Chapter 15, Mississippi Code of 1972.
SECTION 7. Section 27-35-50, Mississippi Code of 1972, is brought forward as follows:
27-35-50. (1) True value shall mean and include, but shall not be limited to, market value, cash value, actual cash value, proper value and value for the purposes of appraisal for ad valorem taxation.
(2) With respect to each and every parcel of property subject to assessment, the tax assessor shall, in ascertaining true value, consider whenever possible the income capitalization approach to value, the cost approach to value and the market data approach to value, as such approaches are determined by the State Tax Commission. For differing types of categories of property, differing approaches may be appropriate. The choice of the particular valuation approach or approaches to be used should be made by the assessor upon a consideration of the category or nature of the property, the approaches to value for which the highest quality data is available, and the current use of the property.
(3) Except as otherwise provided in subsection (4) of this section, in determining the true value of land and improvements thereon, factors to be taken into consideration are the proximity to navigation; to a highway; to a railroad; to a city, town, village or road; and any other circumstances that tend to affect its value, and not what it might bring at a forced sale but what the owner would be willing to accept and would expect to receive for it if he were disposed to sell it to another able and willing to buy.
(4) In arriving at the true value of all Class I and Class II property and improvements, the appraisal shall be made according to current use, regardless of location.
In arriving at the true value of any land used for agricultural purposes, the appraisal shall be made according to its current use, regardless of its location; in making the appraisal, the assessor shall use soil types, productivity and other criteria set forth in the land appraisal manuals of the State Tax Commission, which criteria shall include, but not be limited to, an income capitalization approach with a capitalization rate of not less than ten percent (10%) and a moving average of not more than ten (10) years. However, for the year 1990, the moving average shall not be more than five (5) years; for the year 1991, not more than six (6) years; for the year 1992, not more than seven (7) years; for the year 1993, not more than eight (8) years; and for the year 1994, not more than nine (9) years; and for the year 1990, the variation up or down from the previous year shall not exceed twenty percent (20%) and thereafter, the variation, up or down, from a previous year shall not exceed ten percent (10%). The land shall be deemed to be used for agricultural purposes when it is devoted to the commercial production of crops and other commercial products of the soil, including but not limited to the production of fruits and timber or the raising of livestock and poultry; provided, however, enrollment in the federal Conservation Reserve Program or in any other United States Department of Agriculture conservation program shall not preclude land being deemed to be used for agricultural purposes solely on the ground that the land is not being devoted to the production of commercial products of the soil, and income derived from participation in the federal program may be used in combination with other relevant criteria to determine the true value of such land.
In determining the true value based upon current use, no consideration shall be taken of the prospective value such property might have if it were put to some other possible use.
(5) The true value of each class of property shall be determined annually.
(6) The State Tax Commission shall have the power to adopt, amend or repeal such rules or regulations in a manner consistent with the Constitution of the State of Mississippi to implement the duties assigned to the commission in this section.
SECTION 8. Section 27-35-113, Mississippi Code of 1972, is brought forward as follows:
27-35-113. (1) It shall be the duty of the tax commission to carefully examine the recapitulations of the assessment rolls of the counties, when received, to compare the assessed valuation of the various classes of property in the respective counties, to investigate and determine if the assessed valuation of any classes of property in any one or more counties of the state is not equal and uniform with the assessed values fixed upon the same classes of property in other counties of the state, and to ascertain if any class of property in any one or more counties is assessed contrary to law.
(2) The commission shall, by regulation, establish performance standards and acceptable parameters for evaluation of the accuracy of assessments. These standards shall include, but not be limited to, the following:
(a) Assessment level: The ratio of assessments to current true value or market value;
(b) Assessment uniformity: The test of uniformity or fairness of individual assessments; and
(c) Assessment equity: The test of price-related bias.
(3) The commission shall annually conduct assessment/ratio studies of each county or utilize other means, as determined appropriate by the commission, to determine if each county's assessment records comply with acceptable performance standards. The commission shall send notice of the results of this examination to the assessor and the board of supervisors of each county no later than thirty (30) days after receipt of the board of supervisors' recapitulation. Any county not in compliance with the acceptable performance standards shall, within ninety (90) days of the commission's order, adopt and submit to the commission for approval a plan for achieving compliance and begin the implementation of the plan so that compliance can be achieved by the second succeeding year's assessment roll after the tax year for which the commission's initial order was directed. Failure to adopt and submit an approved plan for achieving compliance or failure to properly implement and follow an approved plan shall cause the commission to withhold the county's homestead exemption reimbursement monies until such time as the county has complied with this provision. In the event the county has not complied with this provision by the end of the state's fiscal year, then the commission shall place the funds so held in a special escrow account. All interest shall accrue to the benefit of the county on this account.
(4) The commission shall approve the property tax rolls of any county operating under a supervised plan to achieve compliance within the first two (2) roll years as provided for in the paragraph above, notwithstanding that the county may be failing a test or tests of the accuracy or equity of assessment.
(5) Any county failing to achieve such compliance for the second succeeding year's assessment roll as outlined above shall be subject to the following restrictions until such time as said tax rolls come into compliance:
(a) The commission shall place into escrow all homestead exemption reimbursements;
(b) The county shall levy and pay over to the commission, for purposes of being placed in the escrow account, the proceeds of the one (1) mill levy provided for in Section 27-39-329(1)(b). All interest shall accrue to the benefit of the county on any funds placed in an escrow account; and
(c) The commission shall identify the class or classes of property whose assessment level is not in conformity with the regulation of the commission governing same, and shall have the authority to adjust and equalize that class or classes of property by, either requiring a fixed percent (1) to be added to the assessed valuation of any class of property in any county found too low; or (2) to be deducted from the assessed valuation of any class of property found too high; in order that the class or classes of property are being assessed in conformity with the commission's regulation.
(6) Once the county achieves compliance with the standard of performance as to assessment level, uniformity and equity as established by the rules and regulations of the State Tax Commission, the commission shall release to the county all funds held in escrow on its behalf during the period of noncompliance.
(7) The board of supervisors of any county aggrieved by any order of the commission may appeal such order to the commission within thirty (30) days after the mailing of such order to the board. The commission shall hear the objections by the board of supervisors and may either affirm its order or rescind its order; however, the commission shall not have the authority to grant relief which is inconsistent with this section. The decision of the commission shall be final.
(8) It is the intent of this section and that of this chapter to vest the tax commission with authority to investigate and determine the assessed valuation of classes of property, and to further establish and/or clarify that tax assessors and the boards of supervisors are vested with the absolute authority to investigate and determine the assessed valuations of individual parcels of property located in their particular county in a manner consistent with the laws of this state.
SECTION 9. Section 27-39-329, Mississippi Code of 1972, is brought forward as follows:
27-39-329. (1) Each county shall, in addition to all other taxes authorized by any statute and notwithstanding any limitation provided in Article 3, Chapter 39, Title 27, Mississippi Code of 1972, levy ad valorem taxes pursuant to subsection (2) of this section.
(2) (a) Any county which has, prior to October 1, 1982, under the provisions of Section 27-39-3, or any other statute authorizing the retention of any state millage or the levying of any county millage, retained a net amount of revenue produced by the state ad valorem tax collected in such county or levied any tax, the proceeds of which have been committed for any purpose authorized by Section 27-39-7 or any other statute authorizing the retention of any state millage or the levying of any county millage, or for the support of a water management district, development district or other district or authority created by law for the improvement and development or operation of a port or harbor or for the payment of any bonds, notes or other indebtedness, or for any other purpose authorized by any statute authorizing the retention of any state millage or the levying of any county millage, shall, for the Fiscal Year 1983 and annually thereafter, levy a tax sufficient to produce the amount of revenue necessary to fulfill such commitment or pay all such bonds, notes or other indebtedness together with the interest thereon as the same shall become due and payable, to continue at the same level the support and operation of such authority or district created by law, as long as the county remains a member, and to fulfill any other purpose authorized by any statute authorizing the retention of any state millage or the levying of any county millage. Any county which has, pursuant to a contract between the Mississippi Board of Economic Development or its predecessor and a city located therein, retained a net amount of revenue, produced by two (2) mills of the state ad valorem tax collected in such county, the proceeds of which have been committed for the improvement, development, operation and expansion of a state port or for the payment of any indebtedness incurred for such purposes, shall, for the Fiscal Year 1983 and annually thereafter until the completion of property reappraisal as certified by the State Tax Commission, levy a tax of two (2) mills to fulfill such commitment consistent with the terms of said contract; however, for the fiscal year after property reappraisal as certified by the State Tax Commission and annually thereafter, such county shall levy an ad valorem tax sufficient to generate revenue equal to the avails of the two-mill levy imposed for the fiscal year next preceding the initial use of such reappraised property values, to fulfill such commitment consistent with the terms of said contract.
Any county which is a member of the Tombigbee River Valley Water Management District may at such time as the district, by determination of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, has completely fulfilled all its obligations as local sponsor for the Tennessee-Tombigbee Waterway Project pursuant to P.L. 79-525, 60 Stat. 634 (1946), and has completely fulfilled its obligations for any other lawful project where the district serves as local sponsor, elect to withdraw from or terminate its membership in said district. Upon completion as determined by the U.S. Corps of Engineers, and in order to withdraw from or terminate its membership in the district, the board of supervisors of any county so desiring shall declare its intention by adopting a resolution so stipulating and spreading such executed resolution upon its minutes and publish such resolution once each week for three (3) consecutive weeks in some newspaper published in the county or in a newspaper having a general circulation therein. If, within the time of giving notice, twenty percent (20%) or fifteen hundred (1500), whichever is less, of the qualified electors of the county shall protest or file a petition against the county's withdrawal from or termination of its membership in the district, then such withdrawal or termination of membership shall not occur unless authorized by a majority of the qualified electors of such county voting at an election to be called and held for that purpose. If the county's withdrawal from or termination of its membership in the district is authorized in the manner set forth herein, the board of supervisors shall mail by regular U.S. Mail a certified copy of its executed resolution to the general office of the Tombigbee River Valley Water Management District. Upon full compliance as heretofore and hereafter directed, the Tombigbee River Valley Water Management District shall enter its order on its minutes terminating or withdrawing the membership of the county as of September 30 following, thereby approving the termination or withdrawal of the county and suspending the levy or levies of ad valorem taxes used to support the district. Provided, however, that the board of supervisors shall not suspend the levy or levies of any millage pledged to support the issuance of any bonds or notes in the name of the district during the period of time that such county was a member of the district and which levies were outstanding at the time of the withdrawal and/or termination; and it is further provided, said county shall be liable and responsible for its pro rata share of any present and/or subsequent judgments or liens filed against the district until the statute of limitations shall have run against the district. "Pro rata share" shall be determined by dividing the total ad valorem tax contribution of such withdrawing county by the total of all ad valorem tax contributions of all member counties in the district multiplied by the total of the outstanding bonded indebtedness and other indebtedness funded by such ad valorem levy or levies, as of the date such indebtedness was incurred.
After the commitment has been fulfilled and is certified by the State Tax Commission as having been fulfilled, the board of supervisors may continue to levy a millage for each fiscal year necessary to produce that same dollar amount as the previous fiscal year for the same purpose or for any other purpose for which any portion of the former state ad valorem tax levy could heretofore have been retained, or for general county purposes. After such commitment has been fulfilled, any county which chooses to continue a levy for the same purpose for which such levy was being made may do so in its discretion. Any county which wishes to continue a levy for any other purpose for which the state ad valorem tax could have been retained or for general county purposes may do so only after an election has been held as follows: such tax shall not be levied until the board shall have published notice of its intention to levy same; said notice to be published once each week for three (3) weeks in some newspaper having a general circulation in the county, but not less than twenty-one (21) days, nor more than sixty (60) days, intervening between the time of the first notice and the meeting at which said board proposes to levy such tax. If, within the time of giving notice, twenty percent (20%) or three thousand (3,000) of the qualified electors of the county, whichever is less, shall protest or file a petition against the levy of such tax, then such tax shall not be levied unless authorized by a three-fifths (3/5) majority of the qualified electors of such county, voting at an election to be called and held for that purpose.
From and after July 1, 1996, the provisions of this paragraph (a) shall not apply to any county which is a member of the Pat Harrison Waterway District.
(b) Beginning with taxes levied for the Fiscal Year 1983, each county shall levy each year an ad valorem tax of one (1) mill upon all taxable property of the county which may be used for any purpose for which counties are authorized by law to levy an ad valorem tax, but the avails of such tax levy shall not be expended unless and until the State Tax Commission has certified that the county has a method of maintaining assessment records in accordance with commission rules and regulations, has an ownership mapping system as provided in Section 27-35-53 in conformity with commission specifications, maintains certified appraisers as provided in Section 27-3-52, and complies with requests by the commission for sales data under Section 27-3-51.
In the event the commission enters its order directing that the avails of this levy be paid to the commission pursuant to Section 27-35-113, then the county shall comply with the commission's directions and the monies paid shall remain in escrow until the county is in compliance with acceptable performance standards for the appraisal of property in accordance with Section 27-35-113.
The commission, prior to October 1 of each year, shall notify each county whether or not it is certified as being in compliance with the requirements of subsection (2)(b). A copy of the notice shall be forwarded to the State Auditor. Any county not certified as being in compliance with any requirements of this subsection (2)(b), except where the commission has entered its order requiring the escrowing of these funds pursuant to Section 27-35-113, shall deposit the avails of the levy described herein in an interest-bearing special account and such avails, including interest earned thereon, shall not be expended until such county has been certified by the commission, for each fiscal year, to be in compliance with this subsection (2)(b).
(c) The tax levies required in this section shall not be exempt under the provisions of Section 27-31-101.
SECTION 10. This act shall take effect and be in force from and after July 1, 1997.