§338.88. St. Mary Parish School Board; additional sales and use tax not to exceed one percent authorized; use of proceeds, issuance of bonds payable therefrom
A. In order to provide additional funds for the payment of salaries of teachers and other personnel employed in the public elementary and secondary schools of St. Mary Parish and/or for the purpose of maintaining and operating the public elementary and secondary schools of St. Mary Parish, and/or for the purpose of providing funds to pay for capital improvements of the public school system of St. Mary Parish, including the acquisition of lands for building sites and playgrounds, purchasing, erecting and improving school buildings and related facilities, and acquiring the necessary equipment and furnishings therefor, title to which shall be in the public, or for any one or more of said purposes, the St. Mary Parish School Board is hereby authorized to levy and collect an additional sales and use tax not to exceed one percent, hereinafter sometimes called "additional sales tax", within the parish of St. Mary, all as more particularly hereinafter set forth.
B. The additional sales tax so levied shall be imposed by an ordinance of the St. Mary Parish School Board, and shall be levied upon the sale at retail, the use, the lease or rental, the consumption and storage for use or consumption of tangible personal property and on sales of services in the parish, all as presently defined in R.S. 47:301 through 317; provided, however, that the ordinance imposing said tax shall be adopted by the school board only after the question of the imposition of the tax shall have been submitted to the qualified electors of the parish at an election conducted in accordance with the general election laws of the State of Louisiana, and a majority of those voting in said election shall have voted in favor of the proposition to impose such additional sales tax. In addition, the said proposition may also include provisions authorizing the funding of the additional sales tax into bonds in the manner set forth therein, subject to the limitations hereafter set forth. The proposition approved at the election shall constitute a full and complete dedication of the avails or proceeds of said tax and its provisions shall control the expenditure thereof. In the event the additional sales tax is so voted, the board shall have complete authority to levy and collect the tax within said parish and to provide for all procedural details necessary in the imposition, collection and enforcement thereof. All costs of conducting the election required by this section shall be borne by the St. Mary Parish School Board and all reasonable and necessary costs and expenses of administering and collecting the additional sales tax shall be paid from the additional sales tax revenues.
C. Said additional sales tax shall be in addition to all other taxes authorized to be imposed by the board, including any other sales and use tax or taxes, and said additional sales tax shall be administered and collected by the board at the same time and in the same manner and pursuant to the definitions, practices and procedures set forth in R.S. 47:301 through 317; provided, however, that the St. Mary Parish School Board shall have the right to contract with any other public agency authorized to collect a sales and use tax for the collection of the said additional sales tax jointly with any sales and use tax of such other agency.
D. The proceeds of the tax herein authorized shall be used to supplement other revenues available to the school board for the payment of salaries of teachers and other personnel employed in the public elementary and secondary schools of St. Mary Parish and/or for the purpose of maintaining and operating the public elementary and secondary schools of St. Mary Parish, and/or for the purpose of providing funds to pay for capital improvements of the public school system of St. Mary Parish as hereinabove defined, or for any one or more of said purposes, and the ordinance imposing said additional tax and any amendments thereto shall state the purpose or purposes for which the additional sales tax is imposed and the revenues derived therefrom shall be dedicated and used solely for said purposes. Subject to the approval at an election as hereinbefore required, the St. Mary Parish School Board is hereby authorized to fund into bonds not to exceed seventy-five percent of the estimated avails or proceeds of said additional sales tax hereinafter sometimes referred to as "sales tax revenues" in order to obtain funds for the purpose of paying all or any part of the cost of any capital improvements for which the sales tax revenues may be expended, all in the manner herein provided, at such times as it deems appropriate.
E. The St. Mary Parish School Board shall by resolution fix the form and terms of the bonds and the rate or rates of interest, payable annually or semiannually, said rate not to exceed the rate prescribed by the Louisiana Civil Code for conventional obligations. The bonds shall be issued in the name of the Parish School Board of the Parish of St. Mary, State of Louisiana, and shall be payable in such medium and at such place or places within or without the state as may be fixed by such resolution. The bonds shall be serial coupon bonds, shall be payable in annual installments with maturities beginning not more than three years after the date of the bonds, and shall run for a period not to exceed twenty-five years from the date thereof. No bonds issued hereunder shall be sold for less than par. All bonds shall be signed by the president and the secretary of the board, under its official seal, and the coupons shall be signed by the facsimile signatures of such officials. The delivery of any bonds or coupons so executed at any time thereafter shall be valid, although, before the date of delivery, any person or persons signing the bonds or coupons shall cease to hold office. The maturities of the bonds shall be so arranged that the total amount of principal and interest falling due in any year, together with principal and interest falling due in such year on all bonds theretofore issued hereunder, and then outstanding, shall never exceed seventy-five per cent of the amount of sales tax revenues estimated by the board to be received by it in the calendar year in which the bonds are issued.
F. Bonds issued hereunder shall constitute a borrowing solely upon the credit of the sales and use tax revenues received or to be received by the board, and shall not constitute an indebtedness or pledge of the general credit of the parish or the board within the meaning of any constitutional or statutory provision relating to the incurring of indebtedness, and the bonds shall contain a recital to that effect. Such bonds shall be in coupon form, but may be made registrable as to principal only if so provided in the resolution authorizing the issuance thereof. They may be made redeemable in advance of maturity at the option of the board at such premium or premiums not greater than five per centum of the principal amount of the bonds as the board may determine.
G. Bonds issued hereunder shall be payable solely from and secured by an irrevocable pledge and dedication of all or such part of the sales tax revenues as may be pledged thereto in the authorizing resolution. Any holder of any of such bonds, or coupons attached thereto, may either at law or in equity, by suit, action, mandamus or other proceeding, enforce and compel performance of all duties required to be performed by the board as a result of issuing the bonds, and may similarly enforce the provisions of the ordinance imposing the tax and the resolution and proceedings authorizing the issuance of such bonds.
H. The board may in any resolution authorizing such bonds provide for the respective priorities of its separate blocks, series or issues of bonds issued hereunder, and may provide for the issuance of additional bonds in the future on a parity therewith pursuant to such procedure or restrictions as may be specified in such resolution. In the absence of such provision, if more than one series of bonds shall be issued hereunder payable from the same sales tax revenues, priority of lien on such revenues shall depend on the time of the delivery of such bonds, each series enjoying a lien prior and superior to that enjoyed by any series of bonds subsequently delivered, except that as to any issue or series of bonds which may be authorized as a unit but delivered from time to time in blocks, the board may in the proceedings authorizing the issuance of such bonds provide that all of the bonds of such series or issue shall be coequal as to lien regardless of the time of delivery; provided that nothing herein stated shall vest in any holder of bonds any right of lien or priority of any kind against any part of the sales tax revenues not pledged to the payment of the bonds by the proceedings authorizing the issuance thereof.
I. When any bonds shall have been issued hereunder, neither the legislature, the board, nor any other authority may discontinue or decrease the tax or permit to be discontinued or decreased the tax in anticipation of the collection of which such bonds have been issued, or in any way make any change in the allocation and dedication of the proceeds of such tax which would diminish the amount of the sales tax revenues to be received by the board, until all of such bonds shall have been retired as to principal and interest, and there is hereby vested in the holders from time to time of such bonds and the coupons representing interest thereon, a contract right in the provisions of this section.
J. Any resolution may contain such covenants with the future holder or holders of the bonds as to the sales tax revenues, the disposition of such revenues, the issuance of future bonds, and such other pertinent matters as may be deemed necessary by the board to assure the marketability of such bonds, provided such covenants are not inconsistent with the provisions of this section.
K. Any resolution authorizing the issuance of bonds hereunder may contain such provisions to assure the enforcement, collection and proper application of the sales tax revenues as the board may think proper, where not inconsistent with the provisions of this section, and when any bonds payable from the tax revenues shall have been issued, this Section, the ordinance of the board imposing the additional sales tax and pursuant to which the tax is being levied, collected and allocated, and the obligation of the board to continue to levy, collect and allocate the tax, and to apply the revenues derived therefrom in accordance with the provisions of said ordinance and this section, shall be irrevocable until such bonds have been paid in full as to principal and interest, and shall not be subject to amendment in any manner which would impair the rights of the holders from time to time of such bonds or which would in any way jeopardize the prompt payment of principal thereof and interest thereon.
L. All bonds issued hereunder shall be advertised for sale on sealed bids, which advertisement shall be published in the official journal of the board and in a financial paper published in the city of New York or the city of New Orleans, with said advertisement to be published at least once a week for three weeks, with the first publication being at least twenty-one days prior to the date fixed for reception of bids. The board may reject any and all bids. If the bonds are not sold pursuant to the advertisement, they may be sold by the board at private sale, within sixty days after the date advertised for the reception of sealed bids, but no private sale shall be made at a price less than the highest bid which shall have been received. If not so sold, the bonds shall be readvertised in the manner herein prescribed.
M. The proceeds derived from the sale of bonds issued hereunder shall be used exclusively by the board for the purpose or purposes for which the bonds are authorized to be issued but the purchasers of the bonds shall not be obligated to see to the application thereof.
N. Before bonds are issued hereunder, the board shall investigate and determine the regularity of the proceedings. The resolution authorizing the bonds may direct that they contain the following recital:
"It is certified that this bond is authorized by and is issued in conformity with the requirements of the constitution and statutes of this state".
Such recital shall be deemed to be an authorized declaration of the board and to import that there is legal authority for issuing the bonds and imposing the tax; that all the proceedings therefor are regular; that all acts, conditions and things required to exist, happen and be performed precedent to and in the issuance of the bonds and the imposition of the tax have existed, have happened and have been performed in due time, form and manner as required by law; that the amount of the bonds, together with all other indebtedness of the board does not exceed any limit or limits prescribed by the constitution or statutes of this state; and that the required notices have been duly and regularly given by publication in the manner required by law. If any bonds are issued containing the above recital, the same shall be construed according to the import herein declared, and it shall be conclusively presumed that the recital is true, and neither the board nor any taxpayer shall be permitted to question the validity or regularity of the bonds, obligations or tax in any court or in any action or proceeding.
O. After the time within which the validity of the bonds may be contested has elapsed, that is, thirty days from the date of publication of the resolution authorizing the bonds and pledging and dedicating the sales tax revenues, the bonds shall be registered with the secretary of state without charge and shall have endorsed thereon the words:
"Incontestable. Secured by a pledge and dedication of a sales and use tax in the parish of St. Mary, Louisiana. Registered this ________________ day of 20___.
SECRETARY OF STATE"
All bonds issued under the provisions of this section and the interest thereon shall be exempt from taxation. Said bonds may be used for deposit with any officer, board, municipality or other political subdivision of the State of Louisiana in any case where deposit of security is required.
P. The provisions of this Section shall be construed as cumulative authority for the exercise of the powers herein granted. The powers conferred by this Section shall not be affected or limited by any other provision of any statute of the state, and no provision, publication, election or right of referendum shall be required or afforded in the performance of any act herein authorized to be done, including the imposition, collection and application of the tax and issuance of bonds payable therefrom, except as herein otherwise specifically provided.
Q. Bonds issued hereunder shall have all the qualities of negotiable paper and shall constitute negotiable instruments under the Negotiable Instruments Law of the State of Louisiana. They shall not be invalid for any irregularity or defect in the proceedings for the issuance and sale thereof and shall be incontestable in the hands of bona fide purchasers or holders for value.
R. The ordinance imposing the additional sales tax and the resolution authorizing the issuance of the bonds hereunder and pledging and dedicating sales tax revenues to the payment thereof shall each be recorded in the mortgage records of the parish of St. Mary and shall each be published in one issue of the official journal of the board. For a period of thirty days from the date of the publication of said ordinance or resolution, respectively, any person in interest may contest the legality of the tax or the bonds so issued, respectively, for any cause, after which thirty day period no one shall have any cause or right of action to contest the legality, formality or regularity of the respective proceedings imposing the tax or authorizing the bonds, for any cause whatsoever. If the question of the validity of any proceedings authorizing the tax or issuing the bonds, respectively, as provided under the provisions of this Section is not raised within the said thirty days from the publication thereof, the authority to levy the tax and the authority to issue the bonds, respectively, the regularity thereof, and the enforceability of the pledge thereof, shall be conclusively presumed, and no court may inquire into such matters. If any resolution is adopted or proceedings had more than thirty days after the publication of the resolution authorizing the issuance of bonds hereunder and pledging and dedicating any of the sales tax revenues, such supplemental resolution or proceedings shall be similarly published, and no contest, action or proceeding to question the validity or legality of such supplemental resolution or proceedings shall be begun in any court by any person for any cause whatsoever after the expiration of thirty days from the date on which such supplemental resolution or proceeding is published.
S. Nothing contained in this Section, and particularly no provision of Subsection D hereof, shall be construed to affect the purposes for which the proceeds of any sales tax authorized or levied prior to any tax levied pursuant to authority of this section shall be used, and in all such cases the disposition of the proceeds of sales taxes heretofore authorized or levied by or for the use of the parish school board shall be made in accordance with the authorization under which such tax was levied and is being collected.
T. Funds raised pursuant to the provisions of this Section shall not be considered by the State Board of Education or the State Department of Education in the application of the state equalization formula or the distribution of proceeds of any other kind or nature by the State Board of Education and the State Department of Education.
Added by Acts 1970, No. 566, §1; Redesignated from R.S. 33:2737.6 pursuant to Acts 2011, No. 248, §4.