Q May a municipality purchase an option to purchase real property and, if so, must more than one appraisal be obtained?

A The purchase of an option to purchase real property constitutes the buying of an intangible right, so there is no donation involved. Under the home rule authority in Section 21-17-5, a municipality may procure an option to purchase real estate, as long as the municipality does not pay more than fair market value for the option. While the municipality would be required to obtain an appraisal of the option, because the municipality is only obtaining an option to purchase and not the real property itself, it would not be required to obtain multiple appraisals, although the municipality would have to comply with Section 43-37-3 once it exercises the option to purchase. (Attorney Generalís Opinion to Barton, dated February 21, 2012)