(a) Authority. - Notwithstanding any other provision of law to the contrary, the board of trustees of a community college may use lease purchase or installment purchase contracts to purchase or finance the purchase of equipment or real property as provided in this section. A college shall not have more than five State-funded contracts in effect at any one time.
(b) Contract Approval. - Contracts for more than one hundred thousand dollars ($100,000) or for a term of more than three years shall be subject to review and approval as provided in this subsection. If the source of funds for payment of the obligation by the community college is intended to be local funds, the contract must be approved by resolution of the tax-levying authority, and the authority must acknowledge in writing its understanding that the community college may require appropriations from the tax-levying authority in order to meet the college's obligations under the contract. The tax-levying authority may in each fiscal year appropriate sufficient funds to meet the amounts to be paid during the fiscal year under the contract. The source of funds for lease purchase or installment purchase contracts for real property shall be local funds. If the source of funds for payment of the obligation by the community college is intended to be State funds, the contract must be approved by resolution of the State Board of Community Colleges. The State Board may in each fiscal year allocate sufficient funds to meet the amounts to be paid during the fiscal year under the contract.
(c) Local Government Commission. - A contract that is subject to approval by the tax-levying authority also shall be subject to approval by the Local Government Commission as provided in Article 8 of Chapter 159 of the General Statutes if the contract:
(1) Extends for five or more years from the date of the contract;
(2) Obligates the board of trustees to pay sums of money to another, regardless of whether the payee is a party to the contract; and
(3) Obligates the board of trustees to pay five hundred thousand dollars ($500,000) or more over the full term of the contract.
(d) Application of Section. - When determining whether a contract is subject to approval under this section the total cost of exercising an option to upgrade property shall be taken into consideration. The term of a contract shall include periods that may be added to the original term through the exercise of an option to renew or extend.
(e) Nonsubstitution Clause. - No contract entered into under this section may contain a nonsubstitution clause that restricts the right of a board of trustees to:
(1) Continue to provide a service or activity; or
(2) Replace or provide a substitute for any property financed or purchased by the contract.
(f) Nonappropriations Clause. - No deficiency judgment may be rendered against any board of trustees, any tax-levying authority, the State Board of Community Colleges, or the State of North Carolina in any action for breach of a contractual obligation authorized by this section. The taxing power of a tax-levying authority and the State is not and may not be pledged directly or indirectly to secure any moneys due under a contract authorized by this section. (1998-111, s. 2; 2007-484, s. 29(e); 2013-310, s. 1.)
Last modified: March 23, 2014