(a) An agriculture authority shall have the following powers, which it may exercise in the agriculture authority's authorized operational area:
(1) To have succession by its corporate name until dissolved as provided in this article.
(2) To adopt bylaws making provisions for its actions not inconsistent with this article.
(3) To institute and defend legal proceedings in any court of competent jurisdiction and proper venue; provided, however, that the board may not be sued in any trial court other than the courts of the county of incorporation; provided, further, that the officers, directors, agents, and employees of an agriculture authority may not be sued for their actions in behalf of the authority except for actions that are unreasonable or known by the person to be unlawful or are performed with reckless disregard for the lawfulness of such actions.
(4) To plan for construction and development of an agriculture center within the operational area of the agriculture authority on property owned by the authority. Construction and development may include any or all of the following:
a. Buildings to hold offices for use by the federal government, the state or any agency of the state, the county, or one or more municipalities within the county.
b. Buildings to house or accommodate public facilities of the federal government, the state or any agency of the state, the county, or one or more municipalities within the county.
c. Streets, boulevards, walkways, parkways, parks, or other places of recreation.
d. Monuments, statues, or other structures beautifying the agriculture center.
e. Community houses or meeting houses or auditoriums.
f. Arenas, convention halls, or convention sites.
g. Music halls, art museums, art exhibits, or other exhibits for the advancement of the humanities and cultural development.
(5) To acquire property and rights and interests in property by gift, grant, lease, or purchase.
(6) To accept or receive gifts, bequests, and devises.
(7) To have and use a corporate seal and alter the seal at its pleasure.
(8) To appoint officers, agents, employees, and attorneys and to fix their compensation.
(9) To hire professionals and enter into contracts for their services in designing and supervising the construction of any building, agriculture center, auditorium, arena, convention hall, music hall, art museum, place of recreation, art exhibit, office building, or other structure that it desires to construct.
(10) To make and enter into contracts and to execute all instruments necessary or convenient to lease or purchase and own real or personal property to be used for the furtherance of the purposes for the accomplishment of which the authority is created.
(11) To plan for programs and exhibits in the agriculture center for the advancement of the agricultural, cultural, and workforce development interests of the citizens of the county and of the municipalities thereof.
(12) To purchase or lease real property and rights or easements therein necessary or convenient for its purposes and to use the same so long as its existence shall continue.
(13) To accept pledges of revenues or grants of money from any person or governmental entity.
(14) To lease its property to any person or governmental entity.
(15) To enter into financing agreements with federal or state agencies that may require the authority to mortgage its property.
(16) To plan for programs and exhibits in the agriculture center for the advancement of agricultural and workforce development interests in the county.
(b) Contracts of an agriculture authority shall be executed in the name of the authority by the chair and attested by the secretary of the authority. The board may provide by resolution for a different form for the execution of a contract by an officer or agent other than the chair and secretary. A contract, irrespective of its form and of the persons executing the contract, shall not be binding unless the contract is authorized or ratified by the board.
(c) An agriculture authority may deposit its funds not needed to meet expenses or obligations in any bank or building and loan association, provided the deposit is fully insured by a federal corporation or agency of the federal government insuring deposits in financial institutions.