2022 Regular Session
To: Agriculture; Judiciary, Division B
By: Senator(s) Seymour, Younger, McCaughn
AN ACT TO AMEND SECTIONS 69-33-1 AND 69-33-9, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, AND TO BRING FORWARD SECTIONS 69-33-3, 69-33-5 AND 69-33-7, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, TO REVISE THE CRIMINAL AND CIVIL PENALTIES FOR VIOLATING THE PROVISIONS OF THE PECAN HARVESTING LAW; AND FOR RELATED PURPOSES.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MISSISSIPPI:
SECTION 1. Section 69-33-1, Mississippi Code of 1972, is amended as follows:
69-33-1. For the purpose of this chapter, the following words shall have the following meanings unless the context shall prescribe otherwise:
(a) "Owner" means the person, firm or corporation owning the land on which pecan trees are growing or the person, firm or corporation having legal possession of such land.
(b) "Harvesting season"
means that portion of each calendar year beginning on * * *
September 1 and ending * * * January
SECTION 2. Section 69-33-3, Mississippi Code of 1972, is brought forward as follows:
69-33-3. When pecan trees are grown on private property and the branches of such trees extend over a public road, street or highway right-of-way, any pecans falling from any such pecan trees onto such public right-of-way shall be deemed the property of the owner of such pecan trees until the end of the harvesting season, and it shall be unlawful for any person, without the permission of the owner of such trees, to remove such pecans from any such public right-of-way during the harvesting season. It shall be unlawful for any person, without the permission of the owner of such trees, to pick or otherwise remove any pecans from the limbs or branches of pecan trees or to cause pecans to fall from such trees.
SECTION 3. Section 69-33-5, Mississippi Code of 1972, is brought forward as follows:
69-33-5. Any pecans remaining on a public road, street or highway right-of-way during that portion of each calendar year except the harvesting season shall be deemed to be abandoned by the owner of such pecans, and it shall not be unlawful for any person to remove such pecans from such public right-of-way, except during the harvesting season.
SECTION 4. Section 69-33-7, Mississippi Code of 1972, is brought forward as follows:
69-33-7. The provisions of this chapter shall not be construed to prohibit employees of the State Highway Department or the employees of a county or municipality from engaging in normal activities of maintenance on the rights-of-way of public roads, streets or highways. Nor shall the provisions of this chapter be construed to grant the owner of any pecan trees the right to harvest pecans from the rights-of-way of any interstate or other limited access highway.
SECTION 5. Section 69-33-9, Mississippi Code of 1972, is amended as follows:
69-33-9. (1) Any
person who shall be found guilty of violating the provisions of this chapter
shall be guilty of * * *
larceny and subject to the
penalties of petty larceny (Section 97-17-43, Mississippi Code of 1972), or
grand larceny (Section 97-17-41, Mississippi Code of 1972).
(2) In addition to any such fine or imprisonment that may be imposed for violating the provisions of this chapter, the court shall order restitution to be made to the owner of the severed pecans in United States currency at the current replacement value of the damage or loss.
SECTION 6. This act shall take effect and be in force from and after July 1, 2022.