156-105. Assessment lien; collection; sale of land.

The assessments shall constitute a first and paramount lien, second only to State and county taxes, upon the lands assessed for the payment of the bonds and interest thereon as they become due, and shall be collected in the same manner and by the same officers as the State and county taxes are collected. The assessments shall be due and payable on the first Monday in September each year, and if the same shall not be paid in full by the thirty-first day of December following, it shall be the duty of the sheriff or tax collector to sell the lands so delinquent. The sale of lands for failure to pay such assessments shall be made at the courthouse door of the county in which the lands are situated, between the hours of 10 o'clock in the forenoon and four o'clock in the afternoon of any date except Sunday or another legal holiday when the courthouse is closed for transactions, which may be designated by the board of drainage commissioners. After any such sale date has been designated by the board of drainage commissioners, if for any necessary cause the sale cannot be made on that date, the sale may be continued from day to day for not exceeding four days, or the lands may be readvertised and sold on any day which the board of drainage commissioners may or shall designate during the same hours and without any order being obtained therefor during the same calendar year. Nothing in this section shall be construed to require any order from any court for any sale or resale held hereunder. The existing general tax law in force when sales are made for delinquent assessments shall have application in redeeming lands so sold; and in all other respects, except as herein or otherwise modified or amended, the existing law as to the collection of State and county taxes shall apply to the collection of such drainage assessments. No bid at any sale shall be received unless sufficient in amount to discharge all the drainage assessments and other charges due by the delinquent lands or owner thereof, together with all costs and expenses of sale. If no sufficient bid be received, the board of drainage commissioners of the district shall be deemed the purchaser in its corporate capacity at a sum sufficient to pay all assessments which are due and costs as above stated, and shall be entitled to receive a certificate of purchase and deed in the manner provided by law for purchasers at tax sales. The board of drainage commissioners shall only be required to pay to the sheriff the costs and expenses of sale before receiving a certificate of purchase. The board of drainage commissioners of the district in their corporate capacity shall be in like position and have the same rights and be subject to the same duties as the purchaser of lands at any tax sale under the general law. If the board of drainage commissioners shall have been the purchaser of lands so sold, the amount paid in redemption by the owner, or any person having an estate therein or lien thereon, shall include the sum bid therefor plus the penalty. The board of drainage commissioners shall pay to the sheriff or tax collector the amount representing their bid at the sale of said lands before they shall be entitled to receive a deed therefor, which the sheriff shall pay to the treasurer of the drainage district in the same manner as other funds received by him. The board of drainage commissioners, after acquiring a deed for said lands, may hold the same as an asset of the district, and shall be liable for the payment of all drainage assessments and State and county taxes accruing after the sale at which the district was a bidder, and in all respects be deemed the owner of said lands and subject to the same privileges and liabilities as any other landowner, including the right to convey the said lands for a consideration and pay the proceeds of said sale to the treasurer of the district, which may be distributed by the drainage commissioners for the benefit of the district in the same manner as other district funds.

If any sheriff or tax collector failed for any reason to collect drainage assessments upon lands in any drainage districts due in 1917, or any subsequent years, and further failed to make valid sales of the lands so delinquent in the payment of such assessments, then and in such event the existing sheriff or tax collector is hereby authorized and directed to proceed to collect such unpaid drainage assessments, with interest thereon from the dates when such assessments respectively became due, and in default of payment being made he is further authorized to make sales of such lands as may be in default at any time hereafter, at the times and in the manner authorized by law as amended herein; and the purchaser at said sales shall acquire title to such lands in the manner provided by law. If the sheriff or tax collector in office at the time such assessments were in default has since died or gone out of office, the powers herein given shall be exercised by the existing sheriff or tax collector.

The 1931 amendment to this section shall have the same force and effect from and after April 13, 1931, as if it had been ratified and enacted prior to the first day of January, 1929, and no sale of drainage lands held under the provisions of section 5361 shall be deemed or declared void by reason of the fact that they may not have been held on the day specified in section 5361 of the Consolidated Statutes prior to this amendment. (1911, c. 67, s. 12; 1917, c. 152, s. 9; C.S., s. 5361; Pub. Loc. 1923, c. 88, ss. 3, 4, 5; 1931, c. 273; 2003-337, s. 12.)