2007 Regular Session
By: Representative Malone
AN ACT TO AMEND SECTION 47-5-66, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, WHICH AUTHORIZES THE DEPARTMENT OF FINANCE AND ADMINISTRATION TO LEASE PRISON LANDS TO PRIVATE ENTITIES FOR AGRICULTURAL PURPOSES, TO EXTEND THE DATE OF REPEAL ON THIS SECTION FROM JULY 1, 2007, TO JULY 1, 2008; TO PROVIDE THAT A PER ACRE FEE SHALL BE COLLECTED IN LIEU OF AD VALOREM TAXES ON LANDS LEASED FOR AGRICULTURAL PURPOSES; TO PROVIDE THAT SUCH LEASES SHALL NOT BE LEASED FOR AN AMOUNT LESS THAN WOULD BE RECEIVED IF SUCH LAND WERE TO BE LEASED UNDER ANY FEDERAL LOAN PROGRAM; AND FOR RELATED PURPOSES.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MISSISSIPPI:
SECTION 1. Section 47-5-66, Mississippi Code of 1972, is amended as follows:
47-5-66. (1) It shall be the duty of the * * * Department of Finance and Administration, with the approval of the Public Procurement Review Board, to lease lands at public contract upon the submission of two (2) or more sealed bids to the * * * Department of Finance and Administration after having advertised the land for rent in newspapers of general circulation published in Jackson, Mississippi; Memphis, Tennessee; the county in which the land is located; and contiguous counties for a period of not less than two (2) successive weeks. The first publication shall be made not less than ten (10) days before the date of the public contract, and the last publication shall be made not more than seven (7) days before that date. The * * * Department of Finance and Administration may reject any and all bids. If all bids on a tract or parcel of land are rejected, the * * * Department of Finance and Administration may then advertise for new bids on that tract or parcel of land. Successful bidders shall take possession of their leaseholds at the time authorized by the * * * Department of Finance and Administration. However, rent shall be due no later than the day upon which the lessee shall assume possession of the leasehold, and shall be due on the anniversary date for each following year of the lease. The * * * Department of Finance and Administration may provide in any lease that rent shall be paid in full in advance or paid in installments, as may be necessary or appropriate. In addition, the * * * Department of Finance and Administration may accept, and the lease may provide for, assignments of federal, state, or other agricultural support payments, growing crops or the proceeds from the sale thereof, promissory notes, or any other good and valuable consideration offered by any lessee to meet the rent requirements of the lease. If a promissory note is offered by a lessee, it shall be secured by a first lien on the crop of the lessee, or the proceeds from the sale thereof. The lien shall be filed pursuant to Article 9 of the * * * Uniform Commercial Code and Section 1324 of the Food Security Act of 1985, as enacted or amended. If the note is not paid at maturity, it shall bear interest at the rate provided for judgments and decrees in Section 75-17-7 from its maturity date until the note is paid. The note shall provide for the payment of all costs of collection and reasonable attorney's fees if default is made in the payment of the note. The payment of rent by promissory note or any means other than cash in advance shall be subject to the approval of the Public Procurement Review Board, which shall place the approval of record in the minutes of the board. There is created a special fund to be designated as the "Prison Agricultural Enterprises Fund." Any monies in hand or due from the leasing of Penitentiary lands and the sales of timber as provided in Section 47-5-56 and earmarked for the Prison Industries Fund shall be deposited to the special fund for prison agricultural enterprises. All monies in each fiscal year derived from the leasing of the Penitentiary lands and the sales of timber as provided in Section 47-5-56 shall be deposited into the special fund for the purpose of conducting, operating and managing the prison agricultural enterprises of the department. All profits derived from the prison agricultural enterprises shall be deposited into the Prison Agricultural Enterprises Fund. All profits derived from prison industries shall be placed in a special fund in the State Treasury to be known as the "Prison Industries Fund," to be appropriated each year by the Legislature to the nonprofit corporation, which is required to be organized under the provisions of Section 47-5-535, for the purpose of operating and managing the prison industries. The state shall have the rights and remedies for the security and collection of the rents given by law to landlords. Lands leased for agricultural purposes under Section 47-5-64 shall be subject to a fee-in-lieu of ad valorem taxes, including taxes levied for school purposes. The fee-in-lieu shall be Nine Dollars ($9.00) per acre. Upon the execution of the agricultural leases to private entities as authorized by Section 47-5-64, the Department of Finance and Administration shall collect the in lieu fee and shall forward the fees to the tax collector in which the land is located. The tax collector shall disburse the fees to the appropriate county or municipal governing authority on a pro rata basis. The sum apportioned to a school district shall not be less than the school district's pro rata share based upon the proportion that the millage imposed for the school district by the appropriate levying authority bears to the millage imposed by the levying authority for all other county or municipal purposes. Any funds obtained by the corporation as a result of sale of goods and services manufactured and provided by it shall be accounted for separate and apart from any funds received by the corporation through appropriation from the State Legislature. All nonappropriated funds generated by the corporation shall not be subject to appropriation by the State Legislature.
Any land leased, as provided in this section, shall not be leased for an amount less than would be received if such land were to be leased under any federal loan program. In addition, all leases shall be subject to the final approval of the Public Procurement Review Board before such leases are to become effective.
(2) This section shall be repealed from and after July 1, 2008.
SECTION 2. This act shall take effect and be in force from and after its passage.