2005 Regular Session
To: Judiciary, Division B
By: Senator(s) Albritton
AN ACT TO AMEND SECTION 41-29-107, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, TO REMOVE THE AGE RESTRICTION TO ALLOW HIRING OF CERTIFIED AGENTS FROM OTHER LAW ENFORCEMENT AGENCIES; AND FOR RELATED PURPOSES.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MISSISSIPPI:
SECTION 1. Section 41-29-107, Mississippi Code of 1972, is amended as follows:
41-29-107. (1) There is created within the Mississippi Department of Public Safety an office to be known as the Mississippi Bureau of Narcotics. The office shall have a director who shall be appointed by the Commissioner of Public Safety. The commissioner may assign to the appropriate offices of the department such powers and duties deemed appropriate to carry out the lawful functions of the Mississippi Bureau of Narcotics.
(2) The Commissioner of Public Safety is empowered to employ or appoint necessary agents. The commissioner may also employ such secretarial, clerical and administrative personnel, including a duly licensed attorney, as necessary for the operation of the bureau, and shall have such quarters, equipment and facilities as needed. The salary and qualifications of the attorney authorized by this section shall be fixed by the director, but the salary shall not exceed the salary authorized for an assistant attorney general who performs similar duties.
(3) The director and agents so appointed shall be citizens of the United States and of the State of Mississippi, and of good moral character. The agents shall be not less than twenty-one (21) * * * years of age at the time of such appointment. In addition thereto, those appointed shall have satisfactorily completed at least two (2) years of college studies. However, two (2) years of satisfactory service as a law enforcement officer and the completion of the prescribed course of study at a school operated by the Bureau of Narcotics and Dangerous Drugs, United States Justice Department, shall satisfy one (1) year of such college studies, and four (4) years of satisfactory service as a law enforcement officer and the completion of the prescribed course of study at such federal bureau school as stated heretofore shall fully satisfy the two (2) years of college requirement. * * *
During the period of the first twelve (12) months after appointment, any employee of the bureau shall be subject to dismissal at the will of the director. After twelve (12) months' service, no employee of the bureau shall be subject to dismissal unless charges have been filed with the director, showing cause for dismissal of the employee of the bureau. A date shall be set for hearing before the director and the employee notified in writing of the date of such hearing and of the charges filed. The hearing shall be held not less than ten (10) days after notification to the employee. After the hearing, at which the employee shall be entitled to legal counsel, a written order of the director shall be necessary for dismissal and the decision shall be final. Any such order of the director shall be a public record and subject to inspection as such.
(4) The Commissioner of Public Safety may assign members of the Mississippi Highway Safety Patrol, regardless of age, to the bureau; however, when any highway patrolman or other employee, agent or official of the Mississippi Department of Public Safety is assigned to duty with, or is employed by, the bureau, he shall not be subject to assignment or transfer to any other office or department within the Mississippi Department of Public Safety except by the commissioner. Any highway patrolman assigned to duty with the bureau shall retain his status as a highway patrolman, but shall be under the supervision of the director. For purposes of seniority within the Highway Safety Patrol and for purposes of retirement under the Mississippi Highway Safety Patrol Retirement System, highway patrolmen assigned to the bureau will be credited as if performing duty with the Highway Safety Patrol. The commissioner may assign employees of the Highway Safety Patrol to the Mississippi Bureau of Narcotics and may assign agents of the bureau to the Highway Safety Patrol; however, any employees so assigned must meet all established requirements for the duties to which they are assigned.
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(5) The Commissioner of Public Safety may enter into agreements with bureaus or departments of other states or of the United States for the exchange or temporary assignment of agents for special undercover assignments and for performance of specific duties.
(6) The Commissioner of Public Safety may assign agents of the bureau to such duty and to request and accept agents from such other bureaus or departments for such duty.
(7) (a) All funds, property and/or PINs belonging to the Mississippi Bureau of Narcotics are transferred to the Department of Public Safety on July 1, 2004. Any funds, property or PINs that are appropriated to or otherwise received by the bureau, or appropriated to, transferred to or otherwise received by the Department of Public Safety for the use of the bureau, shall be budgeted and maintained by the department as funds of the department. Personnel occupying PINs transferred from the bureau to the department shall serve on a probationary basis during the twelve (12) months after July 1, 2004.
(b) In transferring the responsibilities of the Mississippi Bureau of Narcotics to the Department of Public Safety, the commissioner and the director of the bureau shall develop and implement written security precautions that shall be observed by all affected employees. The commissioner and the director shall review, modify and approve the plan before the effective date of the merger of responsibilities of the bureau and the department.
SECTION 2. This act shall take effect and be in force from and after July 1, 2005.