2004 Regular Session
To: Public Utilities
By: Representative Robinson (84th)
AN ACT TO AMEND SECTION 77-15-1, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, TO PROVIDE THAT CERTAIN LOCAL NATURAL GAS DISTRICTS THAT ARE DISTRIBUTING A PORTION OF THEIR REVENUES TO MUNICIPALITIES WITHIN THE DISTRICT SHALL CONTINUE TO MAKE SUCH DISTRIBUTIONS TO THE MUNICIPALITIES; AND FOR RELATED PURPOSES.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MISSISSIPPI:
SECTION 1. Section 77-15-1, Mississippi Code of 1972, is amended as follows:
77-15-1. Notwithstanding any other provisions of law to the contrary, all local natural gas districts containing two (2) or more municipalities and nonmunicipal customers shall establish and maintain a board of directors composed of: (a) the mayors of each municipality within the district whose terms shall be concurrent with their terms of office as mayor; and (b) one (1) system-user from each county within the district, who shall not be a public official. The county system-user board members shall be elected by the system-users residing outside of a municipality, in the county in which such board member resides. In order to qualify as a candidate for election to the board, each person shall obtain, on a petition, twenty-five (25) signatures from system-users in the county in which such person resides. The signatures shall be of system-users residing outside of a municipality and the candidate shall be a system-user who resides outside of a municipality. The board shall call an election within fifteen (15) days after July 1, 1989, to be held within sixty (60) days from the date such election is called. Those persons elected to the board shall serve until the next general election for supervisors and the election for such board members thereafter shall be held at the same time as the supervisor elections and the terms of such board members shall be concurrent with the terms of the supervisors. Any mayor who devotes a substantial amount of time to the operations of a local natural gas district may receive additional compensation as approved by the board of directors. Board members who are mayors shall be entitled to travel expenses as provided by Section 25-3-41 for all board meetings and shall be entitled to compensation to be determined by the board, but not more than One Thousand Two Hundred Fifty Dollars ($1,250.00) per month. Board members who are elected county system-users shall be entitled to receive Fifty Dollars ($50.00) for each day for meetings attended and travel expenses as provided in Section 25-3-41. Such compensation and travel expenses shall be paid out of any available funds of the district and shall be in addition to any compensation paid by a municipality to a mayor on the board. All board members shall file any required statements of economic interest with the Ethics Commission as required by law. This section shall not apply to any local natural gas district which leases its distribution system to an investor-owned utility company regulated by the Public Service Commission.
Any revenues of the district that the board of directors, on the effective date of House Bill No. ____, 2004, are being distributed to municipalities within the district shall continue to be distributed to such municipalities.
SECTION 2. The Attorney General of the State of 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 3. 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.