Q The county would like to purchase a piece of property for the storage of emergency vehicles. The appraisal is less than the owner’s asking price and also less than what the Board believes to be fair market value. May the county purchase the property at a price above the appraised value?

A Section 43-37-3 provides that a county may purchase real property for the lesser of the best negotiated price, the approved appraisal of the fair market value, or the price at which the property is offered for sale. In paying more than the appraisal for the property, the Board must make a factual determination that the price to be paid is commensurate with what it determines to be fair market value. (Attorney General’s Opinion to Coleman, March 27, 2015)