AN ACT TO AMEND AN ACT ENTITLED "AN ACT TO REINCORPORATE THE TOWN OF MIDDLETOWN," BEING CHAPTER 128, VOLUME 33, LAWS OF DELAWARE, AS AMENDED, TO PROVIDE FOR PAVING OR REPAIRING OF SIDEWALKS AND CURBS AND TO ORDER CONNECTION WITH WATER MAIN OR SEWER MAIN IN THE TOWN OF MIDDLETOWN AND TO PROVIDE FOR THE COLLECTION OF COSTS THEREOF FROM OWNERS OF THE LAND ABUTTING AND TO PROVIDE THAT THE COSTS THEREOF WHEN DONE BY THE TOWN OF MIDDLETOWN SHALL BE A LIEN ON THE PROPERTY, RECOVERABLE BY THE SALE OF LANDS AND PREMISES AFFECTED AS A SPECIAL ASSESSMENT.
Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the State of Delaware in General Assembly met (two-thirds of the Members elected to each Branch thereof concurring therein):
Section 1. That all of Section 10, Chapter 128, Volume 33, Laws of Delaware, entitled "An Act to Reincorporate the Town of Middletown," as amended, be and the same is hereby amended by striking out all paragraphs of Section 10 thereof, and inserting in lieu thereof the following paragraphs to be designated as Section 10 thereof:
"Section 10. Whenever Council shall deem it expedient and needful for the public good and convenience that any sidewalk within said Town should be paved, or that any pavement should be repaired or relaid, or that any curbing should be laid or reset or repaired, it shall issue a written order to the person or persons owning the land thereunder, or abutting thereon, if known, requiring him or them to pave such sidewalk or curb, or to repair or relay such sidewalk, pavement or curb, or to reset or repair such curbing.
"The length and width of all pavements and curbs, and the material out of which the same shall be constructed, shall be prescribed by Council, but no person shall be obligated to pave any sidewalk binding and abutting a vacant lot or lot not adjoining or near a dwelling house to a greater width than four feet.
"If such owner or owners shall neglect or refuse to pave the sidewalk, or to relay or repair the same, or to set, reset or repair the curbing in such order mentioned and described, for the space of twenty days after the day fixed in said order for the completion thereof, he or they shall forfeit and pay to the 'Mayor and Council of Middletown' for the use of said town the sum of Five Dollars ($5.00) for each and every day thereafter (not to exceed twenty days) while such sidewalk remains unpaved or while such pavement or curb remains unlaid or unrepaired, and thereupon it shall be lawful for the Council to cause such sidewalk, paving or curbing to be laid or repaired, or reset, as the case may be, the costs thereof, together with the penalty hereinabove described, together with interest at six per centum per annum from the date of the completion of said improvements shall be a lien on the lands and improvements before, along, in front, or adjoining which said work was done and relate back to the day when Council first caused said pavement or curbing to be laid or repaired, or reset, as the case may be, and the same shall be collected by Council in the same manner in which taxes are now or hereafter may be collected by the sale of said lands and improvements,' provided, nevertheless, that if said Council shall cause a judgment to be entered on said lien in the office of the Prothonotary of the Superior Court in and for New Castle County within thirty days after the completion of said improvements as is now or may hereafter be provided for the collection of taxes for the Town of Middletown, then and in that event such lien and judgment shall have priority over any lien, encumbrance or conveyance of or against said lands and premises.
"The Council shall have like power and it is hereby authorized to order and direct, by like notice and in like manner, the owner or owners, if known, of any lands situate on any street in said Town, where there is, or may hereafter be, a water main or sewer main, to tap the same and connect said water or sewer main by pipe or proper drain with the lands and buildings, so situate on said street; and if he or they shall neglect or refuse so to do for the space of twenty days, as aforesaid, he or they shall be liable to the same penalty as above prescribed and they said Council shall cause the same to be done, and the Mayor and Council of Middletown shall recover the costs together with like penalty and interest in the same manner and under like proceedings as hereinabove prescribed for the recovery of the costs and penalty and interest for default in laying or repairing, pavements or curbs, and the said costs, penalty and interest shall be a lien on said premises as hereinabove prescribed, recoverable as aforesaid.
"If there be more than one owner of any one of the lands and premises effected by the paving, repaving, curbing, recurbing or repairing, or resetting same, or tapping of water or sewer mains, notice to one shall be deemed notice to all persons having any right, title and interest of whatsoever nature in and to said lands and premises; if the owners or owner of said lands and premises are not known to said Council, or if there is no person known to said Council who has any right, title and interest of whatsoever kind and nature in and to said lands and premises, then and in that event, Council shall not be required to issue the written order herein prescribed, but Council shall cause a like notice to be posted on the premises which are to be paved, curbed, repaired, reset, or relaid, as the case may be, or to be connected with the water main or sewer main, as the case may be, for a period of twenty days, after which, if such work has not been begun by the owner or owners or any person having right, title and interest in and to said lands and premises, then and in that event, it shall be lawful for Council to cause such work to be done, and the costs together with penalty above prescribed, with interest thereon, shall be a lien on said lands and premises as hereinabove provided and shall be recovered by the sale of said lands and improvements abutting thereon as herein provided.
"It is hereby specifically provided that any lien recovered as hereinabove provided shall be a lien in rem, and shall constitute a special assessment against said lands and premises affected.
"In case of the sale of any land, premises and improvements under this section, the purchaser or purchasers of the same shall not be required to inquire into the regularity of the acts or proceedings of the Council or of any official or officials of the Mayor and Council of Middletown in complying with the detailed provisions of this section; the entry of judgment on the lien in the office of the Prothonotary of the Superior Court in and for New Castle County as aforesaid shall be conclusive, and the regularity of the proceedings for perfecting the lien or judgment shall not thereafter be inquired into by any court or proceeding."
Approved April 13, 1951.