Bills affecting Real Property passed by the Legislature

The following bills affecting real property were passed by the Legislature and signed into law by the Governor. All of these bills become effective on July 1, 2023.

HB 280 creates a committee to study the purchase of agricultural lands in Mississippi by foreign governments and requires the committee to submit a report to the Legislature by December 1, 2023.

HB 894 amends Section 17-1-27 of the Mississippi Code to permit local governments to impose administrative and civil penalties (i.e., fines) for violation of zoning ordinances. Section 17-1-27 currently permits only criminal fines of $100 per day.

SB 2164 amends Section 37-7-473 to allow school districts to sell land for residential and mixed-use development. Section 37-7-473 currently allows school districts to sell land only for industrial development.

SB 2392 amends Section 19-5-22 to provide that garbage liens will be recorded in the chancery clerk’s office and shall include all information needed for recording and filing.

SB 2647 amends Section 73-35-4.1 and Section 89-1-505 to provide that brokers are not liable to any party for information provided by the seller in a Property Condition Disclosure Statement. SB 2647 also amends Section 89-1-505 to provide that a seller would not have any liability for an error in a Property Condition Disclosure Statement if the error was not within the personal knowledge of the seller, was based on information provided by public agencies, and the seller exercised ordinary care in providing the information. Finally, SB 2647 amends Section 89-1-503 to provide that if the seller fails to complete a part of the Property Condition Disclosure Statement, the purchaser is on notice to make inquiry of the seller about the failure to disclose.

SB 2751 amends Miss. Code Ann. § 29-3-132 to provide that city and county zoning and land use laws do not prohibit the use by school districts of sixteenth-section lands for education or extracurricular facilities.

The following bills made it most of the way through the legislative process, but fell just short of the goal line:

HB 246 would have enacted a new statute providing that a right of first refusal (“ROFR”) in real property is extinguished upon the death of the grantee of the ROFR unless the ROFR or a memo of the ROFR (i) is filed in the land records, and (ii) provides that the ROFR inures to the benefit of the heirs and assigns of the grantee.

HB 685 would have amended Section 89-1-7 to provide that a conveyance to a married couple of property used as their primary residence would create a rebuttable presumption that the property interest is a joint tenancy with right of survivorship unless the deed provided otherwise. Section 89-1-7 currently provides that a conveyance to two or more persons creates a tenancy in common.

HB 821 would have amended Section 25-34-9 to permit persons who are not residents of Mississippi to be notary publics in Mississippi if their place of employment is in this state.

HB 1155 would have changed the law to make it easier to adopt and amend restrictive covenants in residential subdivisions by requiring less than all of the owners to consent.