SEC. 49-19-7. Control pine beetle epidemics and other timber insects and pests.
(1) The Mississippi Forestry Commission shall keep itself informed as to the known varieties of pine beetles and other timber insect pests and diseases, the origin, locality, nature and appearance thereof, the manner in which they are disseminated, and approved methods of treatment, control and eradication. The commission shall from time to time make rules and regulations for carrying out the provisions and requirements of this section, including rules and regulations under which its employees shall (1) inspect places, timber, and timber products, and other things and substances used or connected therewith, (2) investigate, control, eradicate and prevent the dissemination of pine beetles and other timber insect pests and diseases, and (3) supervise or cause the treatment, cutting and destruction of timber or timber products and other things infested or infected therewith. The commission's employees shall have authority to carry out and execute the regulations and orders of the commission and shall have authority, under direction of the commission, to carry out provisions of this section.
(2) The Mississippi Forestry Commission and its employees shall have the authority to enter upon any and all timber lands for the purpose of carrying out the provisions of this section.
(3) All known varieties of pine beetles and other insect pests and diseases infesting or infecting or likely to infest or infect timber or timber products in this state shall be listed by the state forestry commission, and every such variety of pine beetle and every such insect pest or disease listed and all timber and timber products infested or infected therewith are hereby declared to be a public nuisance.
(4) Before entering upon any lands for the purpose of removing any infested or infected timber having a value in excess of one hundred dollars ($100.00), where the owner of such land will not cause the removal of such infested or infected timber, the forestry commission shall first secure an order of the chancery court in term time or in vacation authorizing the commission to effect such removal. Process on any resident owner in any such proceeding shall be served as other process, and process on any non-resident owner shall be had by mailing such process by registered mail, return receipt requested, to the last known address of such non-resident or by publication in three weekly issues of a newspaper published in the county where such timber land is located if no mailing address is known. Any hearing under provisions of this section may be set at any time five days after date of service of process, or in case of publication five days after completion of such publication.
(5) It is the purpose of this section to authorize and empower the state forestry commission to control disease or insect infections or infestations in timber and timber products within this state. It is not the purpose of this section to transfer any powers from the state plant board to the state forestry commission. Use of the word "timber" shall be deemed to refer to such trees as are normally used in the manufacture of lumber and the term "timber products" shall be deemed to refer to products manufactured from such trees normally used in the manufacture of lumber.
SOURCES: Codes, 1942, Sec. 6023-05; Laws, 1954, ch. 183, Secs. 1-5.