(a) In addition to any other powers which it may now have, each county shall have the following powers:
(1) To acquire, whether by construction, purchase, gift or lease, one or more projects which shall be located within this state;
(2) To lease to others (in the case of counties having populations according to the most recent federal decennial census of not less than 54,500 nor more than 56,000, the word others shall include the federal government, any of its departments and agencies) any or all of its projects for such rentals and upon such terms and conditions as the governing body may deem advisable and as shall not conflict with the provisions of this article; and
(3) To issue revenue bonds for the purpose of defraying the cost of acquiring, by construction and purchase, or either, any project and to secure the payment of such bonds, all as provided in this article.
(b) No county shall have the power to operate any project as a business or in any manner except as lessor thereof.