Marengo county is hereby authorized to incur indebtedness to the extent of not exceeding $400,000 in aggregate principal amount, and to issue its bonds in evidence of the indebtedness so incurred, for the purpose of constructing and equipping a new courthouse in said county. Said bonds may be issued only after the question of the issuance thereof shall have been submitted to the qualified electors of said county at an election called for that purpose by the governing body of said county and a majority of said qualified electors voting at said election shall have voted in favor of the issuance of said bonds, which election shall be called, held, conducted, canvassed and may be contested in the manner provided by the then existing laws of Alabama with respect to elections on the issuance of bonds by counties; provided however, that if a majority of the qualified electors of said county participating in the election on the adoption of this amendment shall vote for the adoption thereof then the approval of this amendment expressed by the vote in said county in favor of its adoption shall of itself authorize the issuance of the bonds, and in that event no additional election by the electors of said county shall be required to authorize the issuance of said bonds. In the event the majority vote in said county on the adoption of this amendment is against the adoption thereof, or in the event the majority vote at any election held in said county pursuant to the provisions of this amendment after its adoption is not in favor of the issuance of the bonds proposed at such election, the governing body of the said county may from time to time call other elections hereunder on the issuance of said bonds, but not more than one such election shall be held during any period of twelve consecutive months. The power to become indebted and to issue bonds in evidence of such indebtedness shall be in addition to all other powers which the said county may have under the Constitution and laws of Alabama, and any bonds issued pursuant to this amendment shall not be chargeable against the amount of indebtedness which said county may incur under the Constitution and laws of Alabama in effect prior to the adoption of this amendment. All bonds issued under this amendment shall be general obligations of the county secured by an irrevocable pledge of its full faith and credit, shall be issued in accordance with, and shall be subject to, the provisions of the general laws of Alabama existing at the time of the sale of said bonds respecting the maturities, sale, execution and redemption of bonds by counties.
If the said bonds are authorized to be issued, either by a majority of the qualified electors of said county participating in the election on the adoption of this amendment voting for the adoption thereof or by a majority of the qualified electors of said county voting in favor of the issuance of said bonds at a separate county bond election on the question of the issuance of said bonds, and if the said bonds or any part thereof are actually issued, the governing body of said county shall thereafter have the power, without any further election, to agree to levy and collect, and to levy and collect, for a period of not exceeding seven years and for the sole purpose of paying the principal and interest on such bonds and creating a reserve therefor, a special additional annual ad valorem tax of not exceeding two mills on each dollar's worth of taxable property in said county, as assessed for state taxation for the preceding tax year. The said county shall not, however, in any event have the power to levy said tax or any part thereof with respect to any tax year beginning after final payment and retirement of said bonds. The term "taxable property" as used in this amendment shall include any property that has heretofore been or may hereafter be exempted from county taxes pursuant to the provisions of sections 3 to 5, inclusive, of Title 51 of the Code of Alabama of 1940, as amended, or other similar statute, and the tax herein provided for, if authorized, levied and collected, shall be levied on and collected with respect to all such property just as if it had not been exempted from county taxes. Any provision of section 71 of Title 51 of the Code of Alabama of 1940 to the contrary notwithstanding, the tax herein provided for may, if authorized to be levied, be levied by the governing body of the county at any time prior to the September 1 next preceding the date on which such tax is to become due and payable.
The provisions of this amendment shall be self-executing.