2000 Regular Session
To: Conservation and Water Resources
By: Representative Ellington
House Bill 1174
(As Sent to Governor)
AN ACT TO AMEND SECTION 49-17-86, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, TO AUTHORIZE THE USE OF MONIES IN THE WATER POLLUTION CONTROL EMERGENCY LOAN FUND TO DEFRAY ADMINISTRATIVE EXPENSES; AND FOR RELATED PURPOSES.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MISSISSIPPI:
SECTION 1. Section 49-17-86, Mississippi Code of 1972, is amended as follows:
49-17-86. (1) (a) There is created a fund in the State Treasury to be designated as the "Water Pollution Control Emergency Loan Fund" hereinafter referred to as "emergency fund."
(b) The emergency fund may receive appropriations, bond proceeds, grants, gifts, donations or funds from any source, public or private. The emergency fund shall be credited with all repayments of principal and interest derived from loans made from the emergency fund.
(c) The monies in the emergency fund may be expended only in amounts appropriated by the Legislature.
(d) The emergency fund shall be maintained in perpetuity for the purposes established in this act. Unexpended amount remaining in the emergency fund at the end of a fiscal year shall not lapse into the State General Fund. Any interest earned on amounts in the emergency fund shall be deposited to the credit of the fund.
(2) The commission shall establish a loan program to assist political subdivisions in making emergency improvements such as repairs to or replacement of machinery, equipment, materials, structures or devices in existing water pollution abatement projects or such other emergency water pollution abatement projects as the commission deems necessary. Loans from the emergency fund may be made to political subdivisions as set forth in a loan agreement in amounts not exceeding one hundred percent (100%) of eligible project costs as established by the commission. The commission may require local participation or funding from other sources, or otherwise limit the percentage of costs covered by loans from the emergency fund. The commission may establish a maximum amount for any loan not to exceed Three Hundred Fifty Thousand Dollars ($350,000.00).
(3) The emergency fund may be used only:
(a) To make loans on the condition that:
(i) Loans are made at or below market interest rates, at terms not to exceed ten (10) years after project completion; the interest rate may vary from time to time and from loan to loan at the discretion of the commission.
(ii) Periodic principal and interest payments will commence when required by the commission but not later than one (1) year after project completion and all loans will be fully amortized when required by the commission but not later than ten (10) years after project completion.
(iii) The recipient of a loan shall establish a dedicated source of revenue for repayment of loans. In addition, the commission may require any loan recipient to impose a per connection surcharge on each customer for repayment of any loan funds provided under this section.
(iv) The recipient of the loan is not in arrears in repayments to the Water Pollution Control Revolving Fund, the Water Pollution Control Emergency Loan Fund or under the Water Pollution Abatement Loan Program.
(b) To provide financial assistance to political subdivisions in making emergency improvements such as repairs to or replacement of machinery, equipment, materials, structures or devices in existing water pollution abatement projects or such other emergency water pollution abatement projects as the commission deems necessary.
(c) To defray the reasonable costs of administering the emergency fund and conducting activities under this section, subject to annual appropriation by the Legislature.
(4) The commission shall establish a system of evaluating the eligibility of projects, including a determination of the emergency nature of a situation for which funding is sought.
(5) The fund will be credited with all payments of principal and interest derived from the fund uses described in subsection (3) of this section.
(6) In addition to any amounts allowed under subsection (3)(c), the commission may establish and collect fees to further defray the reasonable costs of administering the emergency fund. Any administrative fees may be included in loan amounts to political subdivisions for the purpose of facilitating payment to the commission; fees may not exceed five percent (5%) of the loan amount. The commission may also use administrative fees collected pursuant to Section 49-17-85 to defray the reasonable costs of administering the emergency fund.
SECTION 2. This act shall take effect and be in force from and after July 1, 2000.