§7-12-1. Establishment authorized; name; exceptions.
Except as hereinafter provided, the governing body of every municipality and the county commission of every county is hereby authorized to create and establish a public agency to be known as a development authority. The name of the authority shall contain the words "development authority," together with the designation of the municipality or the county within which such authority is intended to operate. Nothing in this article contained, however, shall be construed as permitting the governing body of any municipality or county commission of any county in which there exists, on the date on which this article becomes effective, one or more public development authorities, corporations or commissions, organized and existing pursuant to an act or acts of the Legislature, either local or general, and performing substantially the same or similar functions as the development authorities herein authorized, to create and establish such a development authority until such time as all such other public development authorities, corporations and commissions cease operations in such municipality or county: Provided, That nothing herein shall be construed to prohibit the creation and establishment of a municipal development authority when a county or regional development authority exists, and any municipal development authority shall have the exclusive right to exercise its powers granted pursuant to this article within the boundaries of the municipality.