1997 Regular Session
To: Transportation; Ways and Means
By: Representatives Rotenberry, Davis (102nd), Eaton, Ellzey, Frierson, Hamilton, Hudson, King, McInnis, Moore, Rogers, Shows, Taylor, Warren, Watson, Weathersby
House Bill 1752
AN ACT TO PROVIDE THAT THE MISSISSIPPI DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION SHALL PERFORM CERTAIN PROJECTS ON AND ALONG THAT PART OF U.S. HIGHWAY 49 FROM U.S. HIGHWAY 90 TO U.S. HIGHWAY 80 AS MAY BE NECESSARY TO UPGRADE SUCH HIGHWAY TO THE SAME OR SIMILAR STANDARDS FOR DESIGN AND CONSTRUCTION THAT ARE REQUIRED FOR THOSE HIGHWAYS INCLUDED WITHIN THE 1987 FOUR-LANE HIGHWAY PROGRAM; TO CREATE A SPECIAL FUND IN THE STATE TREASURY TO BE KNOWN AS THE "HIGHWAY 49 IMPROVEMENTS FUND," AND TO PROVIDE THAT MONIES IN THE SPECIAL FUND MAY BE USED FOR THE PURPOSE OF DEFRAYING EXPENSES RELATED TO THE PROJECTS AUTHORIZED BY THIS ACT; TO AUTHORIZE THE ISSUANCE OF GENERAL OBLIGATION BONDS OF THE STATE OF MISSISSIPPI FOR THE PURPOSE OF DEFRAYING COSTS OF THE MISSISSIPPI DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION IN PERFORMING THE PROJECTS PROVIDED FOR IN THIS ACT; AND FOR RELATED PURPOSES.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MISSISSIPPI:
SECTION 1. (1) The Mississippi Department of Transportation shall perform such projects for the construction and reconstruction to that part of U.S. Highway 49 that runs between U.S. Highway 90 and U.S. Highway 80 as may be necessary to upgrade such highway to the same or similar standards for design and construction that are required for those four-lane highways and four-lane highway segments provided for under Section 65-3-97. Such projects may include, but are not limited to, geometric, vertical and horizontal alignment changes in the roadway; improvements to existing intersections; widening of shoulders; replacement of bridges; relocating existing lanes and adding lanes; providing access control; constructing frontage roads; providing turn lanes; and creating additional interchanges. The department may acquire such right-of-way as may be necessary for performance of the projects.
(2) Funds for the projects authorized under subsection (1) of this section shall be provided from monies deposited into and credited to the Highway 49 Improvements Fund created in Section 8 of House Bill No. ____, 1997 Regular Session.
(3) (a) The Department of Transportation shall submit a report to the Legislature by January 10 of each year setting forth the current status of the projects prescribed in subsection (1) of this section, which report shall include:
(i) The specific projects upon which engineering is being performed or has been completed;
(ii) The specific projects for which right-of-way has been acquired or is being acquired;
(iii) The specific projects for which construction contracts have been let;
(iv) The specific projects upon which construction is in progress;
(v) The specific projects upon which construction has been completed;
(vi) Projections for completion of the next step on each project;
(vii) For each fiscal year, beginning with fiscal year 1998, a detailed cash flow projection by source of program activities and an estimate of when or if a funding shortage will be encountered due to costs exceeding original projections;
(viii) A schedule of all complete and open-to-traffic highway projects and the related total cost of each project;
(ix) A complete recap of all program receipts by source, and of all disbursements for the prior fiscal year and cumulative totals since the inception of the program as compared to projections; and
(x) A statement from the Department of Transportation regarding the status of the funding of the program based on agency cost experience and projections for the future.
(b) The report shall be deemed submitted when ten (10) copies are received by the Clerk of the House of Representatives and ten (10) copies are received by the Secretary of the Senate.
(2) The Transportation Commission shall give notice in some newspaper or newspapers having a general circulation throughout the counties in which any project is proposed under this section for the purpose of conducting hearings from time to time and receiving comments and suggestions from members of the public regarding such improvements or modifications to roadway design, engineering or traffic control that may be needed to increase safety and reduce highway accidents and fatalities.
SECTION 2. (1) The Mississippi Transportation Commission, at one time or from time to time, may declare by resolution the necessity for the issuance of general obligation bonds of the State of Mississippi to provide funds for all costs incurred or to be incurred by the Transportation Commission and the Mississippi Department of Transportation in constructing and reconstructing highway segments and performing the projects described in Section 1 of this act.
(2) The amount of bonds issued under Sections 2 through 15 of this section shall not exceed Two Hundred Twenty-five Million Dollars ($225,000,000.00).
(3) Upon the adoption of a resolution by the Mississippi Transportation Commission declaring the necessity for the issuance of any part or all of the general obligation bonds authorized by this section, the Transportation Commission shall deliver a certified copy of its resolution or resolutions to the State Bond Commission. Upon receipt of any such resolution, the State Bond Commission, in its discretion, may act as the issuing agent, prescribe the form of the bonds, advertise for and accept bids, issue and sell the bonds so authorized to be sold, and do any and all other things necessary and advisable in connection with the issuance and sale of such bonds.
SECTION 3. The principal of and interest on the bonds authorized under Section 2 of this act shall be payable in the manner provided in this section. Such bonds shall bear such date or dates, be in such denomination or denominations, bear interest at such rate or rates (not to exceed the limits set forth in Section 75-17-101), be payable at such place or places within or without the State of Mississippi, shall mature absolutely at such time or times not to exceed twenty-five (25) years from date of issue, be redeemable before maturity at such time or times and upon such terms, with or without premium, shall bear such registration privileges, and shall be substantially in such form, all as shall be determined by resolution of the State Bond Commission.
SECTION 4. The bonds authorized by Section 2 of this act shall be signed by the Chairman of the State Bond Commission, or by his facsimile signature, and the official seal of the State Bond Commission shall be affixed thereto, attested by the Secretary of the State Bond Commission. The interest coupons, if any, to be attached to such bonds may be executed by the facsimile signatures of such officers. Whenever any such bonds shall have been signed by the officials designated to sign the bonds who were in office at the time of such signing but who may have ceased to be such officers before the sale and delivery of such bonds, or who may not have been in office on the date such bonds may bear, the signatures of such officers upon such bonds and coupons shall nevertheless be valid and sufficient for all purposes and have the same effect as if the person so officially signing such bonds had remained in office until their delivery to the purchaser, or had been in office on the date such bonds may bear. However, notwithstanding anything herein to the contrary, such bonds may be issued as provided in the Registered Bond Act of the State of Mississippi.
SECTION 5. All bonds and interest coupons issued under the provisions of Sections 2 through 15 of this act have all the qualities and incidents of negotiable instruments under the provisions of the Mississippi Uniform Commercial Code, and in exercising the powers granted by Sections 2 through 15 of this act, the State Bond Commission shall not be required to and need not comply with the provisions of the Mississippi Uniform Commercial Code.
SECTION 6. The State Bond Commission shall act as the issuing agent for the bonds authorized under Sections 2 through 15 of this act, prescribe the form of the bonds, advertise for and accept bids, issue and sell the bonds so authorized to be sold, pay all fees and costs incurred in such issuance and sale, and do all other things necessary and advisable in connection with the issuance and sale of the bonds. The State Bond Commission may pay the costs that are incident to the sale, issuance and delivery of the bonds authorized under Sections 2 through 15 of this act from the proceeds derived from the sale of the bonds. The State Bond Commission shall sell such bonds on sealed bids at public sale, and for such price as it may determine to be for the best interest of the State of Mississippi, but no such sale may be made at a price less than par plus accrued interest to the date of delivery of the bonds to the purchaser. All interest accruing on such bonds so issued shall be payable semiannually or annually; however, the first interest payment may be for any period of not more than one (1) year.
Notice of the sale of any such bond shall be published at least one (1) time, not less than ten (10) days before the date of sale, and shall be so published in one or more newspapers published or having a general circulation in the City of Jackson, Mississippi, and in one or more other newspapers or financial journals with a national circulation, to be selected by the State Bond Commission.
The State Bond Commission, when issuing any bonds under the authority of Sections 2 through 15 of this act, may provide that bonds, at the option of the State of Mississippi, may be called in for payment and redemption at the call price named therein and accrued interest on such date or dates named therein.
SECTION 7. The bonds issued under the provisions of Sections 2 through 15 of this act are general obligations of the State of Mississippi, and for the payment thereof the full faith and credit of the State of Mississippi is irrevocably pledged. If the funds appropriated by the Legislature are insufficient to pay the interest on, and principal of, such bonds as they become due, then the deficiency shall be paid by the State Treasurer from any funds in the State Treasury not otherwise appropriated. All such bonds shall contain recitals on their faces substantially covering the provisions of this section.
SECTION 8. (1) The proceeds of the bonds issued under Section 2 of this act shall be deposited in a special fund that is created in the State Treasury to be known as the "Highway 49 Improvements Fund."
(2) Unexpended amounts remaining in the special fund created in subsection (1) of this section at the end of a fiscal year shall not lapse into the State general Fund, and any interest earned on amounts in such special fund shall be deposited to the credit of the special fund.
(3) Upon the issuance and sale of bonds under the provisions of Sections 2 through 15 of this act, the State Bond Commission shall transfer the proceeds of any such sale or sales to the special fund created in subsection (1) of this section. The proceeds of such bonds shall be disbursed solely upon the order of the Transportation Commission, and shall be issued under such restrictions, if any, as may be contained in the resolution providing for the issuance of the bonds.
SECTION 9. The bonds authorized under Sections 2 through 15 of this act may be issued without any other proceedings or the happening of any other conditions or things other than those proceedings, conditions and things which are specified or required by Sections 2 through 15 of this act. Any resolution providing for the issuance of bonds under the provisions of Sections 2 through 15 of this act shall become effective immediately upon its adoption by the State Bond Commission, and any such resolution may be adopted at any regular or special meeting of the State Bond Commission by a majority of its members.
SECTION 10. The bonds authorized under the authority of Sections 2 through 15 of this act may be validated in the Chancery Court of the First Judicial District of Hinds County, Mississippi, in the manner and with the force and effect provided by Chapter 13, Title 31, Mississippi Code of 1972, for the validation of county, municipal, school district and other bonds. The notice to taxpayers required by such statutes shall be published in a newspaper published or having a general circulation in the City of Jackson, Mississippi.
SECTION 11. Any holder of bonds issued under the provisions of Sections 2 through 15 of this act or of any of the interest coupons pertaining thereto may, either at law or in equity, by suit, action, mandamus or other proceeding, protect and enforce all rights granted under Sections 2 through 15 of this act, or under such resolution, and may enforce and compel performance of all duties required by Sections 2 through 15 of this act to be performed, in order to provide for the payment of bonds and interest thereon.
SECTION 12. All bonds issued under the provisions of Sections 2 through 15 of this act shall be legal investments for trustees and other fiduciaries, and for savings banks, trust companies and insurance companies organized under the laws of the State of Mississippi, and such bonds shall be legal securities which may be deposited with and shall be received by all public officers and bodies of this state and all municipalities and political subdivisions for the purpose of securing the deposit of public funds.
SECTION 13. Bonds issued under the provisions of Sections 2 through 15 of this act and income therefrom shall be exempt from all taxation in the State of Mississippi.
SECTION 14. The State Treasurer is authorized, without further process of law, to certify to the Department of Finance and Administration the necessity for warrants, and the Department of Finance and Administration is authorized and directed to issue such warrants, in such amounts as may be necessary to pay when due the principal of, premium, if any and interest on, or the accreted value of, all bonds issued under Sections 2 through 15 of this act; and the State Treasurer shall forward the necessary amount to the designated place or places of payment of such bonds in ample time to discharge such bonds, or the interest thereon, on the due dates thereof.
SECTION 15. The proceeds of the bonds issued under the provisions of Sections 2 through 15 of this act shall be used solely for the purposes herein provided, including the costs incident to the issuance and sale of such bonds.
SECTION 16. This act shall take effect and be in force from and after its passage.