2002 Regular Session
To: Local and Private Legislation; Ways and Means
By: Representative Simpson
AN ACT TO AUTHORIZE THE CITY OF GULFPORT TO LEVY A ONE PERCENT SALES TAX ON BUSINESS ACTIVITIES IN THE CITY; TO PROVIDE THAT THE AVAILS OF THE SALES TAX MAY BE USED FOR THE REPAIR, IMPROVEMENT AND EXTENSION OF THE PUBLIC WATER AND SANITARY SEWER SYSTEM AND OF THE STORM DRAINAGE SYSTEM OF THE CITY; AND FOR RELATED PURPOSES.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MISSISSIPPI:
SECTION 1. As used in this act, the following terms shall have the meanings ascribed to them in this section unless a different meaning is clearly indicated by the context in which they are used:
(a) "Governing authorities" means the governing authorities of the City of Gulfport, Mississippi.
(b) "Business activities" means any activity for which sales tax is collected under Chapter 65, Title 27, Mississippi Code of 1972.
SECTION 2. (1) For the purpose of providing funds for (a) the repair, improvement and extension of the public water and sanitary sewer system of the City of Gulfport, (b) the purchase of the rights-of-way and property interests for the system, (c) the purchase of existing water and sewer system facilities and franchise certificates, and (d) the expenses of any other related water and sewer purposes, the governing authorities of the City of Gulfport are authorized, in their discretion, to levy and collect
an additional sales tax of one percent (1%), which shall be in addition to all other taxes and assessments imposed and which shall be levied upon business activities in the City of Gulfport.
The proceeds of such tax shall be used for the purposes specified in subsection (1) of this section, and any such proceeds in excess of One Hundred Twenty-five Million Dollars ($125,000,000.00) may be used by the governing authorities, in their discretion, for the repair, improvement, extension, and related purposes, of the storm drainage system of the City of Gulfport, including the expenses of purchasing rights-of-way and property interests required therefor. In addition, the proceeds of the tax may be applied to any bonded indebtedness or loan of the City of Gulfport made to finance the improvements and expenditures authorized by this act.
(2) Persons, firms or corporations conducting business activities liable for the tax imposed under subsection (1) of this section shall add the amount of the levy to the sales price and shall collect, insofar as is practicable, the amount of the tax due by them from the person receiving the services or product at the time of payment therefor.
(3) Such tax shall be collected by and paid to the State Tax Commission on a form prescribed by the State Tax Commission in the manner that state sales taxes are computed, collected and paid; and full enforcement provisions and all other provisions of Chapter 65, Title 27, Mississippi Code of 1972, shall apply as necessary to the implementation and administration of this act.
(4) The proceeds of such tax, less three percent (3%) thereof which shall be retained by the State Tax Commission to defray the cost of collection, shall be paid to the governing authorities of the City of Gulfport, on or before the fifteenth day of the month in which collected.
(5) The proceeds of such tax shall not be considered by the City of Gulfport as general fund revenues but shall be dedicated to and expended solely for the purposes specified in this section.
SECTION 3. Before any tax authorized under this act may be imposed, the governing authorities of the City of Gulfport shall adopt a resolution declaring its intention to levy the tax, setting forth the amount of such tax to be imposed, the date upon which such tax shall become effective and calling for a referendum to be held on the question. The date of the election shall be the first Tuesday after the first Monday in November 2002. Notice of such intention shall be published once each week for at least three (3) consecutive weeks in a newspaper published or having a general circulation in the county, with the first publication of such notice to be made not less than twenty-one (21) days before the date fixed in the resolution for the election and the last publication to be made not more than seven (7) days before the election. At the election, all qualified electors of the City of Gulfport may vote, and the ballots used in such election shall have printed thereon a brief statement of the amount and purposes of the proposed tax levy and the words "FOR THE WATER AND SEWER TAX" and, on a separate line, "AGAINST THE WATER AND SEWER TAX" and the voters shall vote by placing a cross (X) or check (√) opposite their choice on the proposition. When the results of any such election shall have been canvassed and certified, the city may levy the tax beginning on the first day of January 2003, if sixty percent (60%) of the qualified electors who vote in the election vote in favor of the tax. At least thirty (30) days before the effective date of the tax provided in this section, the governing authorities shall furnish to the State Tax Commission a certified copy of the resolution evidencing such tax.
SECTION 4. Accounting for receipts and expenditures of the funds described in this act shall be made separately from the accounting of receipts and expenditures of the general fund and any other funds of the City of Gulfport. The records reflecting the receipts and expenditures of the funds prescribed in this act shall be audited annually by an independent certified public accountant, and the accountant shall make a written report of his audit to the governing authorities. The audit shall be made and completed as soon as practicable after the close of the fiscal year, and expenses of such audit shall be paid from the funds derived pursuant to this act or from the city's general fund, in the discretion of the governing authorities.
SECTION 5. The provisions of Sections 1 through 4 shall be repealed on July 1, 2012.
SECTION 6. The governing authorities of the City of Gulfport, Mississippi, shall submit this act, immediately upon approval by the Governor, or upon approval by the Legislature subsequent to a veto, to the Attorney General of the United States or to the United States District Court for the District of Columbia in accordance with the provisions of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, as amended and extended.
SECTION 7. This act shall take effect and be in force from and after the date it is effectuated under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, as amended and extended.