CHAPTER 366

FORMERLY

SENATE BILL NO. 588

AN ACT TO AMEND "AN ACT TO REINCORPORATE THE TOWN OF HOUSTON" BEING VOLUME 61, CHAPTER 517, LAWS OF DELAWARE.

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. Amend Chapter 517, Laws of Delaware, Volume 61 by adding to the Title of Section 5 thereof after the word "Councilman" the words "and Mayor".

Section 2. Amend Section 5 (a), Chapter 517, Laws of Delaware, Volume 61, by striking the word "freeholder" as the same appears therein in its entirety.

Section 3. Amend Section 7 (e), Chapter 517, Laws of Delaware, Volume 61, by striking the period "." at the end thereof and substituting in lieu thereof the following:

", except in cases where a person is under doctors care, on military duty, or out of town for business reasons. All reasons must be in writing and notarized and submitted with a copy of the ballot, prepared by voter, and also notarized, in a sealed envelope, and delivered to the Election Inspector no later than 3:00 P.M. on the day of the Election."

Section 4. Amend Section 24, Chapter 517, Laws of Delaware, Volume 61, by striking the words "accountant to be the auditor of accounts of the Town of Houston." as the same appears in the first sentence thereof and substituting in lieu thereof the following:

"Auditor of accounts for the Town of Houston."

Section 5. Amend Section 24, Chapter 517, Laws of Delaware, Volume 61 by striking the fourth sentence thereof beginning with the words "the Auditor" and ending with the words and period "annual report." in its entirety and substituting in lieu thereof the following:

"The auditor shall annually make and deliver a detailed report of any and all accounts, records, and books by them examined and audited which report, shall be available to any resident and/or taxpayer of the Town of Houston."

Section 6. Amend Section 26, Chapter 517, Laws of Delaware, Volume 61, by adding thereto the following:

(f) In lieu of a Board of Assessment, the Council may, by majority vote, accept the tax listing of the Kent County Board of Assessment, Receiver of Taxes.

(g) It will be the responsibility of the Mayor to present at the regular May Meeting of the Council, the above current tax assessments from the records of the Kent County Board of Assessment and Receiver of Taxes.

Section 7. Amend Section 27 (d), Chapter 517, Laws of Delaware, Volume 61, by striking the words "immediately proceed to collect the same as hereinafter provided" as the same appears therein and substituting in lieu thereof the following:

"proceed to collect the same as hereinafter provided."

Section 8. Amend Section 27, Chapter 517, Laws of Delaware, Volume 61, by adding thereto the following:

(f) "In the event that any tax rate need be changed from the prior years, the Council shall hold two (2) public hearings, (excluding regular meetings) concerning the changing of any tax rates. Said public hearings must be posted ten (10) days prior, in four (4) public places and in one (1) newspaper having general circulation in the Town. A majority vote shall be taken by the council at two (2) regular Council meetings prior to the tax rate changes."

Section 9. Amend Section 28(a), Chapter 517, Laws of Delaware, Volume 61, by striking the words "at once" as the same appear therein in their entirety and substituting in lieu thereof the following:

"on or before July 1, of the year."

Section 10. Amend Section 28(d), Chapter 517, Laws of Delaware, Volume 61, by striking said sub-section (d) in its entirety and substituting in lieu thereof the following:

"In the collection of said taxes, there shall be an abatement of three percent (3%) on any taxes paid on or after the first day of July and prior to the last day of August. On all taxes paid after October 1st there shall be an additional sum of one and one half percent (1 1/2%) interest per month as a penalty for each month or fraction thereof such taxes shall remain unpaid and said penalty shall be collected in the same manner as the original amount of the tax." The town Council shall have the power to make just allowances for delinquencies in the collection of taxes. All taxes unpaid after the 1st of October shall be considered delinquent. In effecting a collection of any delinquent tax the Town Council may impose a collection charge not to exceed eighteen percent (18%) of the amount of the tax and any interest or penalty imposed thereon.

Section 11. Amend Section 29(b), Chapter 517, Laws of Delaware, Volume 61, by striking said sub-section (b) in its entirety and substituting in lieu thereof the following:

(b) "Annually each year at the regular May Meeting of the Council, the Mayor shall present a rough draft of the Town Budget for consideration by the Council members. From this rough draft, the Town Council shall, at the regular June meeting, by majority vote, adopt a final Town Budget for the ensuing fiscal year, containing the financial plan for conducting the affairs of the Town for the ensuing fiscal year."

Section 12. Amend Section 29(e), Chapter 517, Laws of Delaware, Volume 61, by striking said sub-section (e) in its entirety and substituting in lieu thereof the following:

"(e) The budget shall be posted in four (4) public places in the Town within one week following its adoption, and shall be available for any resident and/or taxpayer."

Section 13. Amend Section 32(a), Chapter 517, Laws of Delaware, Volume 61, by striking the words "sidewalks, curbing of any or all of them shall be done" as the same appear in the first sentence thereof and substituting in lieu thereof the following:

"sidewalks, and/or curbing shall be done."

Section 14. Amend Section 32(a), Chapter 517, Laws of Delaware, Volume 61, by striking the words "raveling and/or curbing, or any of them" as the same appear in the first sentence thereof and substituting in lieu thereof the following:

"of sidewalks and/or curbing". Approved July 10, 1980.