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Title 2 - General Assembly
JOINT BOND REVIEW COMMITTEE
Declaration of legislative findings.
The General Assembly finds that a need exists for careful planning of permanent improvements and of the utilization of State general obligation and institutional bond authority in order to ensure the continued favorable bond credit rating our State has historically enjoyed. It further finds that the responsibility for proper management of these matters is placed upon the General Assembly by our State Constitution. It is the purpose of this resolution to further ensure the proper legislative response in the fulfillment of this responsibility.
Joint Bond Review Committee created; membership; expenses and assistance.
There is hereby created a six member joint committee of the General Assembly to be known as the Joint Bond Review Committee to study and monitor policies and procedures relating to the approval of permanent improvement projects and to the issuance of State general obligation and institutional bonds; to evaluate the effect of current and past policies on the bond credit rating of the State; and provide advisory assistance in the establishment of future capital management policies. Three members shall be appointed from the Senate Finance Committee by the chairman thereof and three from the Ways and Means Committee of the House of Representatives by the chairman of that committee. Terms of members of the committee shall correspond to the terms for which they are elected to the General Assembly. The committee shall elect officers of the committee, but any person so elected may succeed himself if elected to do so.
The expenses of the committee shall be paid from approved accounts of both houses. The Legislative Council and all other legislative staff organizations shall provide such assistance as the joint committee may request.
Additional committee members to be appointed.
In addition to the members provided for by Section 2-47-20, two additional members shall be appointed by the Chairman of the Ways and Means Committee of the House of Representatives from the membership of that body. Two additional members shall be appointed by the Chairman of the Finance Committee of the Senate from the membership of the Senate. Members shall serve the same terms as the members of the committee provided for in Section 2-47-20.
Powers and duties.
The committee is specifically charged with, but not limited to, the following responsibilities:
(1) To review, prior to approval by the Budget and Control Board, the establishment of any permanent improvement project and the source of funds for any such project not previously authorized specifically by the General Assembly.
(2) To study the amount and nature of existing general obligation and institutional bond obligations and the capability of the State to fulfill such obligations based on current and projected revenues.
(3) To recommend priorities of future bond issuance based on the social and economic needs of the State.
(4) To recommend prudent limitations of bond obligations related to present and future revenue estimates.
(5) To consult with independent bond counsel and other nonlegislative authorities on such matters and with fiscal officials of other states to gain in-depth knowledge of capital management and assist in the formulation of short and long-term recommendations for the General Assembly.
(6) To carry out all of the above assigned responsibilities in consultation and cooperation with the executive branch of government and the Budget and Control Board.
(7) To report its findings and recommendations to the General Assembly annually or more frequently if deemed advisable by the committee.
Establishment of funding priorities.
No project authorized in whole or in part for capital improvement bond funding under the provisions of Act 1377 of 1968, as amended, may be implemented until funds can be made available and until the Joint Bond Review Committee, in consultation with the Budget and Control Board, establishes priorities for the funding of the projects. The Joint Bond Review Committee shall report its priorities to the members of the General Assembly within thirty days of the establishment of the funding priorities.
Information to be furnished by agencies and institutions.
To assist the State Budget and Control Board (the Board) and the Joint Bond Review Committee (the Committee) in carrying out their respective responsibilities, any agency or institution requesting or receiving funds from any source for use in the financing of any permanent improvement project, as a minimum, shall provide to the Board, in such form and at such times as the Board, after review by the Committee, may prescribe: (a) a complete description of the proposed project; (b) a statement of justification for the proposed project; (c) a statement of the purposes and intended uses of the proposed project; (d) the estimated total cost of the proposed project; (e) an estimate of the additional future annual operating costs associated with the proposed project; (f) a statement of the expected impact of the proposed project on the five-year operating plan of the agency or institution proposing the project; (g) a proposed plan of financing the project, specifically identifying funds proposed from sources other than capital improvement bond authorizations; and (h) the specification of the priority of each project among those proposed.
All institutions of higher learning shall submit permanent improvement project proposal and justification statements to the Board through the Commission on Higher Education which shall forward all such statements and all supporting documentation received to the Board together with its comments and recommendations. The recommendations of the Commission on Higher Education, among other things, shall include all of the permanent improvement projects requested by the several institutions listed in the order of priority deemed appropriate by the Commission on Higher Education without regard to the sources of funds proposed for the financing of the projects requested.
The Board shall forward a copy of each project proposal and justification statement and supporting documentation received together with the Board's recommendations on such projects to the Committee for its review and action. The recommendations of the Commission on Higher Education shall be included in the materials forwarded to the Committee by the Board.
No provision in this section or elsewhere in this chapter, shall be construed to limit in any manner the prerogatives of the Committee and the General Assembly with regard to recommending or authorizing permanent improvement projects and the funding such projects may require.
Establishment of permanent projects by Board.
The board shall establish formally each permanent improvement project before actions of any sort which implement the project in any way may be undertaken and no expenditure of any funds for any services or for any other project purpose contracted for, delivered, or otherwise provided prior to the date of the formal action of the board to establish the project shall be approved. State agencies and institutions may advertise and interview for project architectural and engineering services for a pending project so long as the architectural and engineering contract is not awarded until after a state project number is assigned. After the committee has reviewed the form to be used to request the establishment of permanent improvement projects and has reviewed the time schedule for considering such requests as proposed by the board, requests to establish permanent improvement projects shall be made in such form and at such times as the board may require.
Any proposal to finance all or any part of any project using any funds not previously authorized specifically for the project by the General Assembly or using any funds not previously approved for the project by the Board and reviewed by the Committee shall be referred to the Committee for review prior to approval by the Board.
Any proposed revision of the scope or of the budget of an established permanent improvement project deemed by the Board to be substantial shall be referred to the Committee for its review prior to any final action by the Board. In making their determinations regarding changes in project scope, the Board and the Committee shall utilize the permanent improvement project proposal and justification statements, together with any supporting documentation, considered at the time the project was authorized or established originally. Any proposal to increase the budget of a previously approved project using any funds not previously approved for the project by the Board and reviewed by the Committee shall in all cases be deemed to be a substantial revision of a project budget which shall be referred to the Committee for review. The Committee shall be advised promptly of all actions taken by the Board which approve revisions in the scope of or the budget of any previously established permanent improvement project not deemed substantial by the Board.
Annual permanent improvement programs.
All state agencies responsible for providing and maintaining physical facilities are required to submit an Annual Permanent Improvement Program (APIP) to the Joint Bond Review Committee and the Budget and Control Board. The APIP must include all of the agency's permanent improvement projects anticipated and proposed to be started in the upcoming year. The purpose of the APIP process is to provide the board and the committee with a comprehensive view of each agency's permanent improvement activities. Agencies must submit an APIP to the committee and the board on or before June 15 of each year. The APIP covers the next fiscal year period beginning July 1. The APIP for each higher education agency, including the technical colleges, must be submitted through the Commission on Higher Education which must review the APIP and provide its recommendations to the board and the committee. The board and the committee may develop policies and procedures to implement and accomplish the purposes of this section. The APIP must be approved by August first of the fiscal year for which the APIP applies.
The State shall define a permanent improvement only in terms of capital improvements, as defined by generally accepted accounting principles, for reporting purposes to the State.
Acceptance of gifts-in-kind for architectural and engineering services.
Each state agency and institution may accept gifts-in-kind for architectural and engineering services and construction of a value less than two hundred fifty thousand dollars with the approval of the Commission of Higher Education or its designated staff, the Director of the Division of General Services, and the Joint Bond Review Committee or its designated staff. No other approvals or procedural requirements, including the provisions of Section 11-35-10, may be imposed on the acceptance of such gifts.
Joint Bond Review Committee to regulate starting date of certain highway projects.
The Joint Bond Review Committee is hereby authorized and directed to regulate the starting date of the various projects approved for funding through the issuance of state highway bonds so as to ensure that the sources of revenue for debt service on such bonds shall be sufficient during the current fiscal year.