2012 Mississippi Code
Title 65 - Highways, Bridges and Ferries
Chapter 1 - Transportation Department
Article 1 - In General
§ 65-1-123. Sale or disposal of unnecessary property

MS Code § 65-1-123 (2012) What's This?

(1) Except as otherwise provided in subsection (10) of this section, whenever any personal property has been acquired in any manner by the Mississippi Transportation Commission for public use and in the opinion of the commission, all or any part of the property becomes unnecessary for public use, the commission is authorized to dispose of such property for a fair and reasonable cash market price. Any such sale shall be a sale upon the receipt of sealed bids after reasonable advertisement for bids in such manner and at such time and place as the commission may deem proper and advisable, except that the commission may sell at private sale any such personal property not necessary for public purposes the cash market value of which is less than Five Hundred Dollars ($ 500.00); however, if the personal property is timber, the commission may sell at private sale any such timber not necessary for public purposes the cash market value of which is less than Five Thousand Dollars ($ 5,000.00), except that whenever persons, groups or agencies are permitted to remove a quantity of timber from highway rights-of-way, and the cash market value of the timber is estimated by the commission to be less than One Thousand Dollars ($ 1,000.00), it shall not be necessary to have the timber cruised or appraised and the commission may sell the timber at private sale. The commission shall have the right to reject any and all bids in its discretion and to sell the property theretofore advertised at private sale for not less than the highest of the rejected bids, or to readvertise.

(2) Except as otherwise provided in subsections (3) and (4) of this section, whenever real property, with the exception of easements for highway purposes, has been acquired by the Mississippi Transportation Commission, in any manner, for public use and in the opinion of the commission all or any part thereof becomes unnecessary for public use, the same shall be declared on the minutes of the commission as excess property and shall be sold at private sale at market value. If the excess property was a total take from the original owner, then the commission shall offer to such owner, in writing, the first right of refusal to purchase such excess property; however, if after due diligence the original owner cannot be located, then the commission shall offer the first right of refusal to purchase the property to the adjoining property owner or owners. If the excess property was a partial take from the current owner of the parcel of real property from which the excess property was originally taken, then the commission shall be required to offer in writing the first right of refusal to purchase such excess property to such owner. If within forty-five (45) days any owner to whom the commission has offered the first right of refusal under the provisions of this subsection fails to accept the offer to purchase, the property shall then be offered to the adjoining property owner or owners. If within forty-five (45) days an adjoining property owner fails to accept the offer to purchase, then the excess property shall be sold to the highest bidder upon the receipt by the commission of sealed bids after reasonable advertisement for bids in such manner and at such time and place as the commission deems proper and advisable; however, the commission shall have the right to reject any and all bids in its discretion and to sell the property theretofore advertised at private sale for not less than the highest of the rejected bids, or to readvertise. Upon payment of the purchase price, the executive director of the department, upon due authorization by the commission entered on its minutes, may execute a quitclaim deed conveying such property to the purchaser.

(3) Whenever the commission acquires by fee simple interest any property determined to be an uneconomic remnant outside the right-of-way, then the commission may sell the property to the adjoining property owner or owners for an amount not less than the market value established by the county tax assessor or a state licensed or certified appraiser.

(4) Whenever the commission desires to sell any real property used as maintenance lots, the property shall be sold to the highest bidder upon the receipt by the commission of sealed bids and after reasonable advertisement for bids in such manner and at such time and place as the commission deems proper and advisable; however, the commission, in its discretion, may reject any and all bids and sell the property advertised at private sale for not less than the highest of the rejected bids, or may readvertise. Upon payment of the purchase price, the executive director of the department, upon authorization by the commission entered on its minutes, may execute a quitclaim deed conveying the property to the purchaser.

(5) All easements for highway purposes shall be released when they are determined on the minutes of the commission as no longer needed for such purposes, and when released, they shall be filed by the department in the office of the chancery clerk in the county where the property is located.

(6) In no instance shall any part of any property acquired by the commission, or any interest acquired in such property, including, but not limited to, easements, be construed as abandoned by nonuse, nor shall any encroachment on such property for any length of time constitute estoppel or adverse possession against the state's interests.

(7) It is the intent of the Legislature that the Transportation Commission shall declare property it has acquired and which is no longer needed for public purposes as excess and to sell and/or dispose of such excess property in accordance with the provisions of this section as soon as practicable after such property becomes excess in fact. Unnecessary or excess property or property interests shall be disposed of only upon order of the Transportation Commission on its minutes as provided in this section.

(8) Whenever any real property has been acquired by the Transportation Commission and in the opinion of the commission all or any part of the property will not be utilized in the near future, the property shall be so declared by the Transportation Commission on its minutes and the commission may lease or rent the property for its market value.

(9) This section shall not apply to any sale, donation, exchange or other conveyance of real property when the Legislature otherwise expressly authorizes or directs the commission to sell, donate, exchange or otherwise convey specifically described real property.

(10) (a) As an alternative to the sale of timber under subsection (1) of this section, the Mississippi Transportation Commission may enter into an agreement with the State Forestry Commission for the general supervision and management of timber on selected portions of the rights-of-way of the interstate highway system and those completed segments of four-lane highways in the state. Such an agreement may prescribe the details of, and authority and control over, the full range of forestry management practices. Seventy-five percent (75%) of any money collected from the sale of timber on rights-of-way, less any expenses associated therewith, shall be deposited into the Education Enhancement Fund created in Section 37-61-33, and the remainder shall be deposited into the State Highway Fund to be expended solely for the repair, maintenance, construction or reconstruction of highways.

(b) Subject to the provisions of paragraph (a) of this subsection, the Mississippi Transportation Commission may, after consultation with the State Forestry Commission, adopt such rules and regulations with regard to the management, sale or disposal of timber on highway rights-of-way as it considers appropriate; provided, however, such rules and regulations shall be uniform throughout the state and shall be designed to maximize the value of such timber or minimize the cost of removing such timber.

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