1997 Regular Session
To: Education; Ways and Means
By: Representative McCoy
House Bill 767
AN ACT TO AUTHORIZE THE ISSUANCE OF GENERAL OBLIGATION BONDS OF THE STATE OF MISSISSIPPI FOR THE PURPOSE OF PROVIDING ADDITIONAL FUNDS FOR THE TECH-PREP FUND; TO AMEND SECTION 37-151-25, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, TO CONFORM TO THE PROVISIONS OF THIS ACT; AND FOR RELATED PURPOSES.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MISSISSIPPI:
SECTION 1. As used in this act, the following words shall have the meanings ascribed herein unless the context clearly requires otherwise:
(a) "Accreted value" of any bond means, as of any date of computation, an amount equal to the sum of (i) the stated initial value of such bond, plus (ii) the interest accrued thereon from the issue date to the date of computation at the rate, compounded semiannually, that is necessary to produce the approximate yield to maturity shown for bonds of the same maturity.
(b) "State" means the State of Mississippi.
(c) "Commission" means the State Bond Commission.
SECTION 2. For the purpose of providing funds to enable the State Board of Education to make allocations to school districts as provided by Section 37-151-25, Mississippi Code of 1972, the commission is authorized and empowered to issue Tech-Prep bonds under the conditions prescribed in this act. The aggregate principal amount of such bonds outstanding at any one time, after deducting the amount of the sinking fund provided for the retirement of bonds issued for such purposes, shall never exceed the sum of Sixty Million Dollars ($60,000,000.00). Within such limits, however, Tech-Prep bonds may be issued from time to time under the conditions prescribed in this act.
SECTION 3. Before any Tech-Prep bonds are issued under this act, the State Board of Education shall transmit to the commission a request for the issuance thereof in the form of a resolution adopted by the Council for Education Technology. The request shall embody the following:
(a) A schedule showing the aggregate of bonds issued pursuant to previous requests, the purposes for which the same were issued, the annual payments required to retire such bonds and the interest thereon, and the amount of sinking fund applicable to the retirement of such outstanding bonds;
(b) The amount of bonds sought to be issued, the purpose or purposes for which the bonds are to be issued, and the amount intended for each purpose;
(c) A schedule showing future annual principal requirements and estimated annual interest requirements on the bonds requested to be issued;
(d) The estimated amount of the allotments which the State Board of Education intends to make within the then current fiscal year;
(e) The aggregate amount for which allotments have been approved, but which await completion because the funds necessary to make the same are not available.
SECTION 4. If it shall appear to the satisfaction of the commission from the request provided for in Section 3 of this act:
(a) That the estimate of the needs for the then current fiscal year as shown pursuant to the requirement of Section 3 of this act requires bonds to be issued in the amount requested; and
(b) That the issue will be within the limitations prescribed by Section 2 of this act;
then it shall be the duty of the commission to issue Tech-Prep bonds in accordance with said request.
SECTION 5. The principal of and interest on the bonds authorized under Section 2 of this act shall be payable in the manner provided in this section. Such bonds shall bear such date or dates, be in such denomination or denominations, bear interest at such rate or rates (not to exceed the limits set forth in Section 75-17-101, Mississippi Code of 1972), be payable at such place or places within or without the State of Mississippi, shall mature absolutely at such time or times not to exceed twenty (20) years from date of issue, be redeemable before maturity at such time or times and upon such terms, with or without premium, shall bear such registration privileges, and shall be substantially in such form, all as shall be determined by resolution of the commission.
SECTION 6. The bonds authorized by Section 2 of this act shall be signed by the chairman of the commission, or by his facsimile signature, and the official seal of the commission shall be affixed thereto, attested by the secretary of the commission. The interest coupons, if any, to be attached to such bonds may be executed by the facsimile signatures of such officers. Whenever any such bonds shall have been signed by the officials designated to sign the bonds who were in office at the time of such signing but who may have ceased to be such officers before the sale and delivery of such bonds, or who may not have been in office on the date such bonds may bear, the signatures of such officers upon such bonds and coupons shall nevertheless be valid and sufficient for all purposes and have the same effect as if the person so officially signing such bonds had remained in office until their delivery to the purchaser, or had been in office on the date such bonds may bear. However, notwithstanding anything herein to the contrary, such bonds may be issued as provided in the Registered Bond Act of the State of Mississippi.
SECTION 7. All bonds and interest coupons issued under Sections 1 through 20 of this act have all the qualities and incidents of negotiable instruments under the provisions of the Uniform Commercial Code, and in exercising the powers granted by this act, the commission shall not be required to and need not comply with the provisions of the Uniform Commercial Code.
SECTION 8. The commission shall act as the issuing agent for the bonds authorized under Section 2 of this act, prescribe the form of the bonds, advertise for and accept bids, issue and sell the bonds so authorized to be sold, pay all fees and costs incurred in such issuance and sale, and do any and all other things necessary and advisable in connection with the issuance and sale of such bonds. The commission is authorized and empowered to pay the costs that are incident to the sale, issuance and delivery of the bonds authorized under this act from the proceeds derived from the sale of such bonds. The commission shall sell such bonds on sealed bids at public sale, and for such price as it may determine to be for the best interest of the State of Mississippi, but no such sale shall be made at a price less than par plus accrued interest to the date of delivery of the bonds to the purchaser. All interest accruing on such bonds so issued shall be payable semiannually or annually; however, the first interest payment may be for any period of not more than one (1) year.
Notice of the sale of any such bonds shall be published at least one (1) time, not less than ten (10) days before the date of sale, and shall be so published in one or more newspapers published or having a general circulation in the City of Jackson, Mississippi, and in one or more other newspapers or financial journals with a national circulation, to be selected by the commission.
The commission, when issuing any bonds under the authority of Sections 1 through 20 of this act, may provide that bonds, at the option of the State of Mississippi, may be called in for payment and redemption at the call price named therein and accrued interest on such date or dates named therein.
SECTION 9. The bonds issued under Sections 1 through 20 of this act are general obligations of the State of Mississippi, and for the payment thereof the full faith and credit of the State of Mississippi is irrevocably pledged. If the funds appropriated by the Legislature are insufficient to pay the principal of and the interest on such bonds as they become due, then the deficiency shall be paid by the State Treasurer from any funds in the State Treasury not otherwise appropriated. All such bonds shall contain recitals on their faces substantially covering the provisions of this section.
SECTION 10. Upon the issuance and sale of bonds under Sections 1 through 20 of this act, the commission shall transfer the proceeds of any such sale or sales to the Tech-Prep Fund created in Section 37-151-25, Mississippi Code of 1972.
SECTION 11. The bonds authorized under Sections 1 through 20 of this act may be issued without any other proceedings or the happening of any other conditions or things other than those proceedings, conditions and things which are specified or required by this act. Any resolution providing for the issuance of bonds under the provisions of this act shall become effective immediately upon its adoption by the commission, and any such resolution may be adopted at any regular or special meeting of the commission by a majority of its members.
SECTION 12. The bonds authorized under the authority of Sections 1 through 20 of this act may be validated in the Chancery Court of the First Judicial District of Hinds County, Mississippi, in the manner and with the force and effect provided by Chapter 13, Title 31, Mississippi Code of 1972, for the validation of county, municipal, school district and other bonds. The notice to taxpayers required by such statutes shall be published in a newspaper published or having a general circulation in the City of Jackson, Mississippi.
SECTION 13. Any holder of bonds issued under Sections 1 through 20 of this act or of any of the interest coupons pertaining thereto may, either at law or in equity, by suit, action, mandamus or other proceeding, protect and enforce any and all rights granted under this act, or under such resolution, and may enforce and compel performance of all duties required by this act to be performed, in order to provide for the payment of bonds and interest thereon.
SECTION 14. All bonds issued under Sections 1 through 20 of this act shall be legal investments for trustees and other fiduciaries, and for savings banks, trust companies and insurance companies organized under the laws of the State of Mississippi, and such bonds shall be legal securities which may be deposited with and shall be received by all public officers and bodies of this state and all municipalities and political subdivisions for the purpose of securing the deposit of public funds.
SECTION 15. Bonds issued under Sections 1 through 20 of this act and income therefrom shall be exempt from all taxation in the State of Mississippi.
SECTION 16. The proceeds of the bonds issued under Sections 1 through 20 of this act shall be used solely for the purposes herein provided, including the costs incident to the issuance and sale of such bonds.
SECTION 17. The State Treasurer is authorized, without further process of law, to certify to the Department of Finance and Administration the necessity for warrants, and the Department of Finance and Administration is authorized and directed to issue such warrants, in such amounts as may be necessary to pay when due the principal of, premium, if any, and interest on, or the accreted value of, all bonds issued under Sections 1 through 20 of this act; and the State Treasurer shall forward the necessary amount to the designated place or places of payment of such bonds in ample time to discharge such bonds, or the interest thereon, on the due dates thereof.
SECTION 18. Nothing in this act shall be construed to prohibit a school district from issuing its bonds, negotiable notes or certificates of indebtedness for the purposes, in the manner, to the extent and subject to the limitations provided by Sections 37-59-1 through 37-59-45, Mississippi Code of 1972, or any other applicable sections, and the authority granted by this act shall be construed as being additional, supplemental and cumulative thereto. The proceeds of the sale of any such bonds, negotiable notes or certificates of indebtedness so issued by any such school district may be used for the purpose for which they were issued and may be expended in conjunction with funds provided by the Council for Education Technology under the provisions of this act, or may be expended without such funds, if same be not available.
SECTION 19. Any school board of any school district which may be aggrieved by any final rule, regulation or order of the State Board of Education adopted under the provisions of this act shall have the right to appeal therefrom to the chancery court of the county in which the school district involved or any part thereof is located in like manner, within the same time, with like effect, and subject in all other respects to appeals from orders, rules and regulations of the State Board of Education, the provisions of which are hereby made applicable in all respects to appeals from orders, rules and regulations of the commission under the provisions of this act.
SECTION 20. Sections 1 through 20 of this act shall be deemed to be full and complete authority for the exercise of the powers herein granted, but Sections 1 through 20 of this act shall not be deemed to repeal or to be in derogation of any existing law of this state.
SECTION 21. Section 37-151-25, Mississippi Code of 1972, is amended as follows:
37-151-25. There is hereby created in the State Treasury a special fund to be designated as the "Tech-Prep Fund." Any unexpended balance in said fund at the end of the fiscal year shall carryover to the succeeding fiscal year and shall not lapse into the State General Fund. Said fund shall be credited with any funds appropriated by the Legislature, from the proceeds of State Education Technology Bonds for the implementation of the Tech-Prep program in Grades 7-12 and in the public community colleges and junior colleges through approved programs and from the proceeds of Tech-Prep bonds issued under Sections 1 through 20 of House Bill No. , 1997 Regular Session, and shall be allocated to school districts by the State Board of Education for the following purposes:
(a) Equip labs for hands-on: Career Discovery Course in the 7th grade, Computer Discovery Course in the 8th grade, and Technology Discovery Course in the 9th grade;
(b) Implement application based teaching methodology in existing academic courses;
(c) Develop and implement articulation, integration and sequential course study plans in Vocational and Academic courses;
(d) Administer Occupational Tests;
(e) Implement and Update Career/Educational Plans for each student;
(f) Implement Career Centers for each school;
(g) To provide equipment upgrades to meet technology demands, staff development and teaching materials to implement application based methodology for each of the community college sites.
No community or junior college shall deny admittance into its Tech-Prep program funded under this section to any student who has graduated from high school with a qualifying grade point average, regardless of the curriculum or coursework completed by the student.
SECTION 22. This act shall take effect and be in force from
and after July 1, 1997.