(a) This amendment shall apply only in Baldwin County.
(b) For the purpose of this amendment, the following terms have the following meanings:
(1) WASTEWATER SYSTEM. A system of pipes, lines, meters, pumps, equipment and facilities, all or part of which are located in the unincorporated areas of Baldwin County and which are owned or operated by a wastewater utility, as defined herein, for the collection, treatment, and disposal of wastewater from homes, schools, businesses, and other entities in which solids, sewerage, nonhydrocarbon greases, and oils are collected for treatment or where wastewater is collected for disposal. Individual septic tank systems, decentralized or cluster facilities as defined by general law, and all portable toilets are expressly excluded from the definition of the term "wastewater system."
(2) WASTEWATER UTILITY. The owner or operating entity of a wastewater system, whether privately owned or publicly owned, including privately owned wastewater systems, municipally owned wastewater systems, and wastewater systems owned by or through boards or other entities established by municipal corporations or as otherwise provided by state law.
(3) WASTEWATER. Solids, sewerage, nonhydrocarbon greases, and oils.
(c) The Legislature may by general or local law provide for the regulation of wastewater utilities, whether privately owned or publicly owned, in the unincorporated area of the county. The regulation may include uniform minimum standards for the design, placement, construction, operation, and maintenance of wastewater systems and the regulation of the establishment of reasonable and just rates for consumers and the wastewater utilities. In the case of uniform minimum standards established within any extraterritorial jurisdiction of a municipality, the standards established pursuant to the authority granted in this amendment shall apply. Any minimum standard adopted pursuant to this amendment shall not apply to any part of a wastewater system installed or permitted prior to the effective date of the standard unless it is determined necessary for the protection of the public health and welfare and the environment of Baldwin County. All laws, rules, regulations, construction standards, and specifications regulating wastewater systems and wastewater utilities shall be non-discriminatory and apply equally to all wastewater systems and wastewater utilities operating or located within the unincorporated areas of the county.
(d) The Legislature may authorize the levy of taxes or fees in an amount not to exceed five percent of the gross receipts from the connection, collection, and treatment revenues collected from customers of wastewater utilities in the unincorporated area of the county to be used for the purposes of the administration of regulation adopted pursuant to this amendment.
(e) The Legislature may provide for the mandatory connection to wastewater systems where service is reasonably available and where it is in the best interest for the protection of the public health and welfare and the environment of Baldwin County.
(f) The Legislature by general or local law may authorize the exercise of the power of eminent domain for the construction of wastewater utilities in the county.