2003 Regular Session
By: Representative Stringer
AN ACT TO AMEND SECTION 73-13-45, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, TO INCREASE THE THRESHOLD AMOUNT REQUIRING AN ENGINEER AND ARCHITECT FOR THE CONSTRUCTION OF PUBLIC BUILDINGS; AND FOR RELATED PURPOSES.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MISSISSIPPI:
SECTION 1. Section 73-13-45, Mississippi Code of 1972, is amended as follows:
73-13-45. (1) (a) Neither the state, nor any of its political subdivisions, such as a county, city or town, shall award construction contracts of any public work involving the practice of engineering or architecture unless the plans, specifications and estimates have been prepared and such work supervised by a registered professional engineer or architect; provided, that nothing in this subsection shall be held to apply to such public work wherein the expenditure does not exceed Fifty Thousand Dollars ($50,000.00); and provided further, that nothing in this subsection shall apply to any municipality wherein such public work is not financed in whole or in part through the issuance of bonds and let to public contract.
(b) The state and any of its political subdivisions, such as a county, city or town, may engage in construction of public buildings involving the practice of engineering or architecture and using political subdivision work forces without the supervision of a registered professional engineer or architect, provided that the total cost of the public building does not exceed One Hundred Fifty Thousand Dollars ($150,000.00). This paragraph (1)(b) shall not supersede any rules and regulations promulgated by the State Department of Health and the Department of Environmental Quality.
(2) (a) In the awarding of public contracts for professional engineering services, preference shall be given to resident professional engineers over those nonresident professional engineers domiciled in a state having laws which grant a preference to the professional engineers who are residents of that state. Nonresident professional engineers shall be awarded Mississippi public contracts only on the same basis as the nonresident professional's state awards contracts to Mississippi professional engineers under similar circumstances. When a nonresident professional engineer submits a proposal for a public project, he shall attach thereto a copy of his resident state's current statute, resolution, policy, procedure or executive order pertaining to such state's treatment of nonresident professional engineers. Resident professional engineers actually domiciled in Mississippi, be they corporate, individuals or partnerships, shall be granted preference over nonresidents in the awarding of contracts in the same manner and to the same extent as provided by the laws of the state of domicile of the nonresident. As used in this section, the term "resident professional engineer" includes a nonresident person, firm or corporation that has been qualified to do business in this state and has maintained a permanent full-time office in the State of Mississippi for not less than two (2) years prior to submitting a proposal for a public project, and the subsidiaries and affiliates of such a person, firm or corporation.
(b) The provisions of this subsection shall not apply to any contract for any project upon which federal funds would be withheld because of the preference requirements of this subsection.
(c) Any contract, agreement or arrangement for professional engineering services negotiated, made or entered into, directly or indirectly, by the state, counties, municipalities or any political subdivision thereof, or by any special districts, which is in any way in violation of the provisions of this subsection is hereby declared to be void as contrary to the public policy of this state and shall not be given effect or enforced by any court of this state or by any of its officers or employees.
(d) Nothing in this subsection shall affect the validity of any contract in existence prior to July 1, 1989.
(e) For purposes of this section, the term "professional engineering services" means those within the scope of the practice of professional engineering as defined by Sections 73-13-1 through 73-13-45, or those performed by any registered professional engineer in connection with professional employment or practice.
SECTION 2. This act shall take effect and be in force from and after July 1, 2003.