CHAPTER 484

AN ACT TO AMEND CHAPTER 19 OF TITLE 17, DELAWARE CODE, TO PERMIT ADDITIONAL RELOCATION EXPENSES TO BE PAID BY THE STATE HIGHWAY DEPARTMENT TO PROPERTY OWNERS ACQUIRING NEW OR REPLACEMENT PROPERTY.

WHEREAS, the Federal Aid Highway Act of 1968 establishes a new program of highway relocation assistance; and

WHEREAS, the declared purpose of this program is to insure that a few individuals do not suffer disproportionate injuries as a result of a displacement caused by a highway program; and

WHEREAS, the General Assembly further finds that it is in the public interest to provide dislocated property owners certain costs and expenses not presently provided for under the provisions of Chapter 19 of Title 17 of the Delaware Code.

NOW, THEREFORE,

Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the State of Delaware:

Section 1. Chapter 19 of Title 17 of the Delaware Code, is hereby amended by adding thereto:

§ 1913. Additional homeowner relocation assistance

In addition to the payments provided for in Sections 1903 and 1905 of this Chapter, any owner of real property acquired for a highway project which is improved by a single-, two- or three-family dwelling, actually owned and occupied by the owner for not less than one year prior to the institution of negotiations for the acquisition of such property and who, within a period of one year following the transfer of such dwelling to the Department, purchases a replacement dwelling, which replacement dwelling qualifies as being decent, safe and sanitary in accordance with the standards established by the Department, shall be entitled to receive as additional relocation assistance; provided, however, that the payment as set forth in Section 1903 has been used as a partial down payment on such replacement, both of the following:

1. An amount not to exceed the sum of Five Hundred Dollars ($500.00) to compensate the owner for the settlement costs actually incurred in the purchase of a replacement dwelling.

Settlement costs shall include only the costs of title examination, title insurance, recording fees, transfer tax, credit report, photographs, survey and mortgage placement fee; but, such settlement costs shall exclude any escrow deposits or prorations.

2. An interest subsidy to compensate such owner for any increased rate of interest which such owner is required to pay for financing such replacement dwelling.

This interest subsidy shall be computed and allowed only

(a) If there was an existing mortgage against the dwelling transferred to the Department and such mortgage was a valid lien on said premises for at least one year prior to the institution of negotiations for the acquisition of such property.

(b) If the mortgage for the replacement dwelling bears a higher rate of interest than the interest rate on the mortgage of the transferred dwelling; but, in no event shall such interest on the replacement dwelling be greater than the maximum interest allowable under the provisions of 6 Del. C.

§ 2301.

The value of the interest subsidy shall be the difference in the interest rate existing on the balance of any mortgage on a transferred dwelling and the interest rate on the mortgage of the replacement dwelling for the remainder of the term of any such mortgage on such transferred dwelling reduced to discounted present value.

The discount rate as above provided shall be the maximum rate of interest permitted to be paid on saving deposits by any mutual savings bank within the State of Delaware pursuant to the rules and regulations of the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation.

Approved June 3, 1970.