2002 Regular Session
By: Representative Denny
AN ACT PERMITTING MUNICIPALITIES TO GRANT LIEN AMNESTY TO NONPROFITS AND OTHERS INTERESTED IN DEVELOPING BLIGHTED REAL ESTATE; AND FOR RELATED PURPOSES.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MISSISSIPPI:
SECTION 1. The governing authorities of all municipalities within the State of Mississippi may within their discretion forgive liens imposed on real property for the costs, finds, penalties and other assessments associated with the municipalities' cleaning of real property under Section 21-19-11 subject to the following:
(a) The real property must be in a blighted condition. For purposes of this act, real property shall be considered to be in a blighted condition if it has been vacant and in a deteriorated condition which necessitated the municipality's imposition of a mechanic's lien in order to correct specific code violations.
(b) The liens imposed by the municipality must have been in existence and declared uncollectible for a period of at least five (5) years.
(c) The real property must be purchased by a nonprofit entity or for-profit developer and converted from its blighted condition. For purposes of this act, "nonprofit entity" means an association, organization or corporation which has been declared to be a nonprofit organization in accordance with Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code and provides proof of its tax exempt status to the municipality. "For-profit developer" means an individual, partnership or corporation, other than the real property's owner, who purchases property considered to be in blighted condition and converts the property to productive use.
(d) The owner of the real property must sell the blighted real estate to a nonprofit entity or for-profit developer for a sum not exceeding seventy percent (70%) of the appraised value of the real estate.
(e) The for-profit developer or nonprofit entity must file a joint application with the municipality seeking lien amnesty. The joint application must include the following:
(i) The contract of sale;
(ii) Appraisal reports from two (2) reputable real estate appraisers; and
(iii) Plans for the development and anticipated use of the real estate.
(f) The for-profit developer or nonprofit entity may be conditionally granted lien amnesty and allowed eighteen (18) months to develop the blighted real property. For good cause shown, the municipality may within its discretion allow the developer or nonprofit an additional six (6) to twelve (12) months to develop the blighted property.
(g) If the blighted property remains undeveloped after eighteen (18) months, and the municipality has not extended the period for development of the real estate, the nonprofit entity or for-profit developer must pay the principal amount of the municipality's lien plus interest at the rate of eight percent (8%) per annum.
(h) If the nonprofit entity or for-profit developer desires to sell or dispose of the real property before its development, the nonprofit entity or for-profit developer must obtain the municipality's approval. If the municipality approves the sale or disposal of the real estate before development, the nonprofit entity or for-profit developer shall pay the principal amount of the lien on or before the closing date of the sale unless a subsequent purchaser of the blighted realty property has applied for and has been granted conditional lien amnesty.
(i) If a for-profit developer or nonprofit entity sells or disposes of the real property before development from its blighted condition without the municipality's approval, then the for-profit developer or nonprofit entity shall be liable to the city for the principal amount of the lien plus interest at the rate of eight percent (8%), and a penalty of Fifteen Hundred Dollars ($1,500.00) shall also be assessed against the developer.
(j) Nonprofit entities or for-profit developers receiving conditional lien amnesty may not assign or transfer the lien amnesty to others.
(k) No lien imposed upon real property under the provisions of Section 21-19-11 shall be released until real property in a blighted condition has been developed according to plan.
SECTION 2. This act shall take effect and be in force from and after July 1, 2002.