CHAPTER 193

FORMERLY

HOUSE BILL NO. 387

AN ACT TO AMEND AN ACT, BEING CHAPTER 166, VOLUME 37, LAWS OF DELAWARE, AS AMENDED, ENTITLED "AN ACT TO REINCORPORATE THE TOWN OF SELBYVILLE" TO PROVIDE A PROCEDURE FOR ANNEXATION, TO AMEND THE PROCEDURE FOR VOTING AT THE ANNUAL ELECTION, AND TO PROVIDE A REGISTRATION SYSTEM FOR VOTERS.

Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the State of Delaware (Two-thirds of all members elected to each House thereof concurring therein):

Section 1. Section 5, Chapter 166, Volume 37, as amended, be and the same is hereby further amended by striking out all of Section 5, Chapter 166, Volume 37, Laws of Delaware, as amended, and substituting in lieu thereof the following:

Section 5. In the event that it becomes feasible or necessary in the future for the Town of Selbyville to enlarge its then existing limits and territory, such annexation shall be accomplished pursuant to the following procedures:

(A) If all of the property owners of a territory contiguous to the then existing corporate limits and territory of the Town of Selbyville, by written Petition with the signature of each such Petitioner duly acknowledge, shall request the Town Council to annex that certain territory in which they own property, the Mayor of the Town of Selbyville shall appoint a Committee composed of not less than Three (3) of the elected members of the Town Council to investigate the possibility of annexation. The Petition presented to the Town Council shall include a description of the territory requested to be annexed and the reasons for the requested annexation. Not later than Ninety (90) days following its appointment by the Mayor, as aforesaid, the Committee shall submit a written report containing its findings and conclusions to the Mayor and Town Council of Selbyville. The report so submitted shall include the advantages and disadvantages of the proposed annexation both to the Town of Selbyville and to the territory proposed to be annexed and shall contain the Committee's recommendation whether or not to proceed with the proposed annexation and the reasons therefor. In the event that the Committee appointed by the Mayor concludes that the proposed annexation is advantageous both to the Town and the proposed territory to be annexed, the Town Council of Selbyville may then pass a second Resolution annexing such territory to the Town of Selbyville. Such Resolution shall be passed by the affirmative vote of two-thirds (2/3) of all the elected members of the Town Council. In the event that the Committee appointed by the Mayor concludes that the proposed annexation is disadvantageous either to the Town or to the territory proposed to be annexed, the procedure to be followed shall be the same as hereinafter provided as if the annexation were proposed by Five (5) or more property owners but less than all of the property owners of a territory contiguous to the then limits and territory of the Town of Selbyville.

(B) If Five (5) or more property owners but less than all of the property owners of a territory contiguous to the then limits and territory of the Town of Selbyville, by written petition with the signature of each such Petitioner duly acknowledged, shall request the Town" Council to annex that certain territory in which they own property, the Mayor of the Town of Selbyville shall appoint a Committee composed of not less than Three (3) of the elected members of the Town Council to investigate the possibility of annexation. The Petition presented to the Town Council shall include a description of the territory requested to be annexed and the reasons for the requested annexation; or, the Town Council, by a majority vote of the elected members thereof may, by Resolution, propose that a Committee composed of not less than Three (3) of the elected members of the City Council be appointed by the Mayor to investigate the possibility of annexing any certain territory contiguous to the then limits and territory of the Town of Selbyville.

(C) Not later than Ninety (90) days following its appointment by the Mayor, as aforesaid, the Committee shall submit a written report containing its findings and conclusions to the Mayor and the Town Council of Selbyville. The report so submitted shall include the advantages and disadvantages of the proposed annexation both to the Town of Selbyville and to the territory proposed to be annexed and shall contain the Committee's recommendation whether or not to proceed with the proposed annexation and the reasons therefor. In the event that the Committee appointed by the Mayor concludes that the proposed annexation is advantageous both to the Town and to the territory proposed to be annexed, within Thirty (30) days after receiving the report, a second Resolution shall then be passed by the Town Council proposing to the property owners and residents of both the Town of Selbyville and the territory proposed to be annexed that the Town proposes to annex certain territory contiguous to its then limits and territory. In the event that the Committee appointed by the Mayor concludes that proposed annexation is disadvantageous either to the Town or if the territory proposed to be annexed, within Thirty (30) days after receiving the report of the Committee, the Resolution proposing to the property owners and residents of both the Town and the territory proposed to be annexed shall be passed by the affirmative vote of two-thirds (2/3) of the elected members of the Town Council. If the Resolution shall fail to receive the affirmative vote of two-thirds (2/3) of the elected members of the Town Council, the territory proposed to be annexed shall not again be considered for annexation for a period of one (1) year from the date that the Resolution failed to receive the required affirmative vote. The second Resolution shall contain a description of the territory proposed to be annexed and shall fix a time and place for a public hearing on the subject of the proposed annexation. The Resolution adopted by the Town Council setting forth the above information shall be printed in a newspaper having a general circulation in the Town of Selbyville at least one week prior to the date set for the public hearing, or, at the discretion of the Town Council, the said Resolution shall be posted in Four (4) public places both in the Town of Selbyville and in the territory proposed to be annexed.

(D) Following the public hearing, but in no event later than Thirty (30) days thereafter, a Resolution shall then be passed by a majority of the Town Council ordering a Special Election to be held not less than Thirty (30) nor more than Sixty (60) days after the said public hearing on the subject of the proposed annexation. The passage of this Resolution shall ipso facto be considered the determination of the Town Council to proceed with the matter of the proposed annexation.

(E) The notice of the time and place of holding the said Special Election shall be printed within Thirty (30) days immediately preceding the date of the Special Election in at least two (2) issues of a newspaper having a general circulation in the Town of Selbyville, or, in the discretion of the Town Council, the said notice may be posted in Four (4) public places, both in the Town of Selbyville and in the territory proposed to be annexed at least Fifteen (15) days prior to the date of the said Special Election.

At the Special Election, every property owner, whether an individual, a partnership, or a corporation, both in the Town of Selbyville and the territory proposed to be annexed, shall have one (1) vote for each One Hundred Dollars ($100.00) of assessment as shown by the books of the Town of Selbyville in the case of Town property owners and by the records of the Board of Assessment of Sussex County in the case of property owners in the territory proposed to be annexed. Every citizen of either the Town of Selbyville or the territory proposed to De annexed who is not a property owner shall have one (1) vote. In the case of property owned by husband and wife jointly, the husband and wife shall each have one (1) vote for each Two Hundred Dollars ($200.00) of assessment. In the event that a person owns property both in the Town of Selbyville and in the territory proposed to be annexed and resides in either place, he may vote only where he resides. In the event that a person owns property both in the Town of Selbyville and in the territory proposed to be annexed, but does not reside in either place, he may vote only in the Town of Selbyville and not in the territory proposed to be annexed. Property owners whose property is exempt from taxation or is not assessed shall not be entitled to vote. The books and records in the Town of Selbyville in the case of Town property owners and the books and records of the Board of Assessment of Sussex County in the case of property owners in the territory proposed to be annexed, shall be conclusive evidence of the right of such property owners to vote at the Special Election. In the event that an individual, partnership or corporation holds a Power of Attorney duly executed and acknowledged specifically authorizing the said individual, partnership or corporation to vote at the said Special Election, a duly authenticated copy of the Power of Attorney shall be filed in the Office of the Town Clerk of the Town of Selbyville. Said Power of Attorney so filed shall constitute conclusive evidence of the right of said person, partnership or corporation to vote in the Special Election. The Town Council of the Town of Selbyville shall cause to be prepared and printed and have available a sufficient number of ballots, not less than five (5) days prior to the date of the Special Election. The form of ballot shall be as follows:

THIS BALLOT CASTS VOTES

_____ For the proposed annexation

_____ Against the proposed annexation (Check one)

(F) The Mayor of the Town of Selbyville shall appoint three persons to act as a Board of Special Election, at least one (1) of whom shall own property in the Town of Selbyville and at least one of whom shall own property in the territory proposed to be annexed. One (1) of the said persons so appointed shall be designated the Presiding Officer. Voting shall be conducted in a public place as designated by the Resolution calling the Special Election. The Board of Special Elections shall have available, clearly marked, two (2) ballot boxes. Voting shall be by paper ballot. All votes cast by those persons, partnerships or corporations authorized to vote as residents or property owners in the territory proposed to be annexed shall be deposited in one such ballot box and all ballots cast by those persons, partnerships or corporations who are authorized to vote as residents or property owners of the Town of Selbyville shall be deposited in the other such ballot box. The polling place shall be open from one o'clock in the afternoon, prevailing time, until seven o'clock in the evening, prevailing time, on the date set for the Special Election. All persons in the polling place at the time of the closing of the polls shall be permitted to vote.

(G) Immediately upon the closing of the polling place, the Board of Special Election shall count the ballots for and against the proposed annexation and shall announce the result thereof; the Board of Special Election shall make a Certificate under their hands of the votes cast for and against the proposed annexation and the number of void votes, and shall deliver the same to the Town Council of the Town of Selbyville the said Certificate. Said Certificate shall be filed with the papers of the Town Council.

(H) In order for the territory proposed to be annexed to be considered annexed, a majority of the votes cast both from the Town of Selbyville and from the territory proposed to be annexed must have been cast in favor of the proposed annexation. In the event that the Special Election results in an unfavorable vote for annexation, no part of the territory considered at Special Election for annexation shall again be considered for annexation for a period of at least one (1) year from the date of the said Special Election. If a favorable vote for annexation shall have been cast, the Town Council of the Town of Selbyville shall cause a description and a plot of the territory so annexed to be recorded in the Office of the Recorder of Deeds, in and for Sussex County, but in no event shall such recordation be completed more than Ninety (90) days following the favorable referendum. The territory considered for annexation shall be considered to be a part of the Town of Selbyville from the time of recordation. The failure to record the description plot within the specified time shall not make the annexation invalid, but such annexation shall be deemed to be effective at the expiration of the Ninety (90) day period from the date of the favorable Special Election.

Section 2. Section 6, Chapter 166, Volume 37, Laws of Delaware, as amended, be and the same is hereby further amended by striking out the Fourth Paragraph of said Section 6, Chapter 166, Volume 37, Laws of Delaware, as amended.

Section 3. Section 6, Chapter 166, Volume 37, Laws of Delaware, as amended, be and the same is hereby further amended by striking out all of the Fifth Paragraph of said Section 6, Chapter 166, Volume 37, Laws of Delaware, as amended.

Section 4. Section 6, Chapter 166, Volume 37, Laws of Delaware, as amended, be and the same is hereby further amended by striking out all of the Seventh Paragraph of said Section 6, Chapter 166, Volume 37, Laws of Delaware, as amended.

Section 5. Section 6, Chapter 166, Volume 37, Laws of Delaware, as amended, be and the same is hereby further amended by adding at the end there of a new paragraph to read as follows:

The Annual Municipal Election shall be held on the first Saturday in March from eleven o'clock in the morning, prevailing time, until six o'clock in the evening, prevailing time, at such public place or places as shall be determined by the Town Council of the Town of Selbyville, due notice of which shall be given by posting notices thereof in Five (5) of the most public places within the corporate limits of the Town of Selbyville not less than Ten (10) days before the day of such Annual Municipal Election; provided, however, that in the event there is no contest for any of the several offices in any year, the polls shall not remain open after twelve o'clock noon, prevailing time. Voting machines shall be used in all Annual Municipal Elections in which there is a contest for any elective office. Paper ballots may be used in any Annual Municipal Election in which there is no contest for any elective office. Every election shall be held under the supervision of an Election Board. The Election Board shall consist of One (1) Inspector of the Election and Two (2) Judges of the Election. The Inspector and the Judges constituting the Election Board shall be qualified voters of the Town of Selbyville and shall be appointed for that purpose by the Mayor of the Town of Selbyville at least Two (2) weeks before such Annual Municipal Election. If, at the opening of the polls there shall not be present the Three (3) members of the Election Board, or any one of them, then in such case, the persons qualified to vote at such election and then present at the opening of the polls shall, by viva voce select a qualified voter or voters to so act as a member or members of the Election Board. Members of the Election Board shall be Judges of the Election and shall decide upon the legality of the votes offered. The Election Board shall keep a true and accurate list of all the voters voting at the Annual Municipal Election. The Election Board shall have the power to subpoena persons and officers of the Town of Selbyville and books, records and papers relative to the determination of the validity of any vote or votes offered. At such Municipal Election, every person, male or female who shall have attained the age of Eighteen (18) years on the date of the annual Municipal Election and who shall be registered on the "Books of Registered Voters" of the Town of Selbyville shall be entitled to one (1) vote. The Town Council of the Town of. Selbyville shall provide two (2) Registers to be known as the "Books of Registered Voters" which are to be kept at the office of the Town Clerk. The Books of Registered Voters shall contain the following information for each registrant: the name of the voter arranged in alphabetical order, the local address of the voter, the birth date of the voter, the date the registrant became a resident of the State of Delaware, the date the registrant became a resident of the Town of Selbyville, and other pertinent information. No person shall be registered upon the Books of Registered Voters unless he or she will have acquired the qualifications to vote in the Annual Municipal Election for the year in which he registers. A person shall only be required to register one time; provided, however, that if a registered voter fails to vote in two (2) consecutive contested Annual Municipal Elections, his name shall be removed from the Books of Registered Voters and notice sent to such registered voter at his last known address by registered mail with return receipt requested advising that his or her name has been removed from the list of registered voters and that it will be necessary to register again in order to be eligible to vote in the Annual Municipal Election. The Books of Registered Voters shall be maintained at the Office of the Town Clerk and shall be conclusive evidence of the right of any person to vote in the Annual Municipal Election. A person may register at the Office of the Town Clerk during the regular office hours on any day until the close of business on the third Friday in February by completing such forms as may be provided by the Town.

Approved July 12, 1973.