2003 Regular Session
To: County Affairs
By: Representative Holland
AN ACT TO AMEND SECTION 65-17-1, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, TO AUTHORIZE A MEMBER OF THE BOARD OF SUPERVISORS IN A COUNTY UNIT COUNTY, WITHIN THE DISTRICT FROM WHICH THE SUPERVISOR WAS ELECTED, TO CONSULT WITH AND ADVISE THE COUNTY ROAD MANAGER, AND TO SHARE CERTAIN POWERS AND DUTIES OF THE COUNTY ROAD MANAGER WITH REGARD TO THE MANAGEMENT AND SUPERVISION OF ROAD PROJECTS AND COUNTY PERSONNEL; AND FOR RELATED PURPOSES.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MISSISSIPPI:
SECTION 1. Section 65-17-1, Mississippi Code of 1972, is amended as follows:
65-17-1. (1) This section, relating to the establishment of a county road department, the employment of a county road manager and prescribing the powers and duties of the county road manager, shall not be mandatory in any county which is not required to operate under a countywide system of road administration; provided, however, such county may, by order of the board of supervisors, adopt all or part of the procedures prescribed by this section.
(2) The board of supervisors of each county shall establish a county road department. The board of supervisors shall adopt the general policies to be followed in administration of the county road department and shall appoint as administrative head of the county road department a county road manager who shall be educated or experienced in the construction and maintenance of highways, bridges and other facets of county highway responsibilities. Provided, however, that in any county which, on July 1, 1988, employed two (2) county road managers each of whom managed an administrative division of the county for road construction and maintenance, the board of supervisors may continue to employ two (2) county road managers. The county road manager shall not be a member of the board of supervisors. The county road manager, under the policies determined by the board of supervisors and subject to the board's general supervision and control, shall administer the county road department, superintend the working, construction and maintaining of the public roads and the building of bridges in such county, and carry out the general policies of the board in conformity with the estimates of expenditures fixed in the annual budget as finally adopted by the board or as thereafter revised by appropriate action of the board. All requisitions for the purchase and repair of all equipment, heavy equipment, machinery, supplies, commodities, materials and services for the county road department shall be prepared by the county road manager and submitted to the county department of purchasing for processing in accordance with the central purchasing system. The county road manager shall serve at the will and pleasure of the board of supervisors and may be removed from such position by a majority vote of the board.
(3) The county road manager shall receive such compensation, to be paid from the county road and bridge funds, as the board of supervisors shall determine. The county road manager, before entering upon his duties, shall give bond, with sufficient surety, to be payable, conditioned and approved as provided by law, in a penalty in such amount as may be approved by the board of supervisors, but not less than Fifty Thousand Dollars ($50,000.00).
(4) A county may appoint as county road manager the same person whom it has under the law employed as its county engineer for its state aid road system, provided that such county road manager is being compensated by the county for serving as county road manager and for all duties, if any, that he performs as county engineer by payment of an annual salary and not on the basis of a percentage of the cost of road projects.
(5) Nothing shall preclude one (1) person from serving two (2) or more counties as county road manager by agreement between such counties.
(6) Nothing in this section shall be construed to require new county personnel to be employed but, to the extent practicable, an existing county employee shall be appointed as the county road manager.
(7) The responsibility for construction and maintenance of all "local farm roads" (including bridges) as the same are defined in Sections 65-9-1 and 65-9-3, Mississippi Code of 1972, together with all functions not vested by law in the county state aid engineer in the construction and maintenance of state aid roads shall be vested in the county's road department.
(8) The county road manager each year shall prepare, or shall assist the county administrator (if one has been appointed) in the preparation of, a tentative road budget containing all proposed expenditures for the ensuing fiscal year for construction and maintenance of county roads and bridges and the operation of the county road department. Such tentative road budget shall be submitted to the board of supervisors for incorporation, with such modification as the board may adopt, in the county budget, as prescribed by law.
(9) The county road manager shall employ, subject to approval of the board of supervisors, such assistants and employees as may be necessary in conformity with the budget and county policies and procedure with respect to personnel and subject to approval of the board as to salary or other compensation to be paid. He shall have supervision and jurisdiction over personnel and assignments of personnel engaged in the work of the road department. He may purchase, lease or hire such equipment and purchase such materials and supplies as may be necessary for operation of the county road department in conformity with the budget, in accordance with the central purchase system and existing laws and subject to approval of the board as to price or rental. He shall have jurisdiction over the assignment of equipment needed in performance of the work of the county road department.
(10) The board of supervisors may, by a majority vote of the entire board, supersede any act of the road manager or change, modify or revoke any act which has been completed by the road manager, provided the change, modification or revocation does not constitute a breach of contract.
(11) Nothing in this section or in the provisions of any other law shall be construed to prohibit any member of the board of supervisors, within the district from which the supervisor was elected, from consulting with or advising the county road manager or sharing the powers and duties of the county road manager with regard to the management and supervision of county road projects and county personnel to the extent that the exercise of such powers and duties and the management and supervision of such projects and personnel do not conflict with any policies or procedures adopted or approved by the board of supervisors of the county.
SECTION 2. This act shall take effect and be in force from and after July 1, 2003.