HOUSE BILL NO. 521
AS AMENDED BY HOUSE AMENDMENT NO. 2
AN ACT TO AMEND TITLE 11, DELAWARE CODE RELATING TO THE PLANNING PROCESS FOR CORRECTIONAL FACILITY CONSTRUCTION.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF THE STATE OF DELAWARE:
Section 1. Amend Chapter 65, Title 11, Delaware Code, by adding a new Subchapter XI thereto to read as follows:
"Subchapter XI. Institutional Planning
§6590. Comprehensive Plan
The department shall develop a comprehensive plan for determining the need for establishing various types of correctional facilities, for selecting the location of a correctional facility, and for determining the size of the correctional facility. The comprehensive plan shall include procedures for evaluation of environmental, social, economic, transportation, land use, property value, public and social services impacts generated by the construction of a particular facility in any proposed location within the state. The comprehensive plan shall not be implemented until the General Assembly, by concurrent resolution adopted by a majority of those elected and serving in each house thereof by a roll call vote approves the comprehensive plan.
(a). The department shall determine the need for a correctional facility based upon the comprehensive plan developed pursuant to Section 6590 of this chapter.
(b) Following a formal determination of need for such facility by the department, the department shall publish a notice In two newspapers of general circulation within this state that it proposes to establish a correctional facility in a particular town, city or county.
(c) In addition to the general notice specified in Subsection (b), hereof, the department shall further provide written notice within thirty (30) days of the publishing of said general notice to the following officials.
(1) The state senator and the state representative representing the district or districts in the county and town or city where the proposed correctional facility is to be located.
(2) The chief elected official of the county and town or city in which the proposed correctional facility is to be located.
(3) Each member of the governing body of the county and town or city in which the proposed correctional facility is to be located.
(4) The president of the local school board of the school district or districts in the county and town or city in which the proposed correctional facility Is to be located.
(5) The president of each state supported college or university whose campus is located within the county, town or city where the proposed correctional facility is to be located.
In addition to the notice required by §6591(c)(3), the department, on or before the date of the issuance of said notice, shall request the chief elected official of the county in which the proposed correctional facility Is to be located to create a local advisory board to assist in the identification of potential sites for the correctional facility, to act as a liaison between the department and the local community, and to ensure that the comprehensive plan is being followed by the department. The advisory board Shall consist of no less than seven and no more than eleven citizens of the county, town or city in which the proposed correctional facility is to be located. The citizens appointed to the advisory committee shall be fairly representative, in terms of economic status, race, education and the like, of the population of the county, city or town where the proposed correctional facility is to be located.
(e) After the requirements of subsections (a)(b)(c) and (d) of §6591 are completed, and the department has identified a potential site, the department shall hold public hearing(s) on at least two different dates in the city or town in which the potential site is located. If the potential site is in an unincorporated area, the public hearings shall be held in the county seat of the county in which the potential site is located. The department shall participate in the hearings and shall make a reasonable effort to respond in writing to concerns and questions raised on the record at the hearings. The hearing shall not be held until the local advisory board created by subsection (d) hereof has organized or no sooner than 30 days after the notice is sent pursuant to subsection (c) hereof, whichever occurs first.
(f) The hearings to be conducted under subsection (e) shall be open to the public and shall be held in a place available to the general public. Any person shall be permitted to attend a hearing except as otherwise provided herein. A person shall not be required as a condition of attendance at a hearing to register or otherwise provide his or her name or other information. A person shall be permitted to address the hearing under written procedures established by the department. A person shall not be excluded from a hearing except for a breach of peace actually committed at the meeting.
(g) The following provisions shall apply with respect to public notice of hearings required under this section:
(1) The public notice required under this section shall always contain the name of the department, its telephone number and address.
(2) A copy of the public notice shall always be posted at the department's principal office and other locations considered appropriate by the department.
(3) Public notice of the hearings required under this section shall be prominently posted in the office of the county clerk of the county in which the proposed facility is to be located at least 10 days prior to each hearing and shall state the date, time and place of the hearing. The required public notice of hearing shall also be published at least 10 days prior to the hearing in a newspaper of general circulation within the county in which the proposed facility is to be located.
(4) A public notice stating the date, time and place of the hearing shall be prominently posted at least 10 days before the hearing.
(h) Minutes of each hearing required under this section shall be kept by the department showing the date, time, place, members of the local advisory board present, members of the local advisory board absent, and a summary of the discussions at the hearing. The minutes shall be public record open to public inspection and shall be available at the address designated on the posted public notices. Copies of the minutes shall be available from the department to the public at the reasonable estimated cost for printing and copying.
(i) On the basis of the information developed by the department during the course of the site selection process and after community concerns have been responded to by the department pursuant to subsection (e), a final site determination shall be made by the department for the proposed correctional facility. The department shall make a finding that the site determination was made in compliance with this section.
§6592. Action for Noncompliance with site selection process Any person who resides in the city, town or county in which the department has determined a need for a correctional facility may bring an action in a court of proper jurisdiction if the department has not followed the site selection process set forth In this Subchapter.
An action brought under this section shall not be maintained if it is filed more than 60 days after the department formally announces its final site selection."
Section 2. The provisions of this Act shall become effective on September 1, 1990 and shall not apply to site selection for correctional facilities projects proposed by the Governor during Fiscal Year 1990.
Approved June 27, 1990.