§22-3-27. Leasing of lands owned by state for surface mining of coal.

No land or interest in land owned by the state may be leased, and no present lease may be renewed by the state, nor any agency of the state, for the purpose of conducting surface-mining operations thereon unless said lease or renewal has been first authorized by an act of the Legislature: Provided, That the provisions of this section do not apply to underground mining on such land.