HOUSE BILL NO. 574
AS AMENDED BY HOUSE AMENDMENT NOS. 2, 7 AND 8
AND SENATE AMENDMENT NOS. 1 AND 2
AN ACT TO AUTHORIZE THE SALE OF CERTAIN SURPLUS LANDS HELD BY THE STATE OF DELAWARE AS TRUSTEE OF THE JOHN FERRIS TRUST UNDER CERTAIN CONDITIONS AND TO EXEMPT SUCH SALE FROM THE PROVISIONS OF 7 DEL. C. CHAPTER 45 AND 29 DEL. C. CHAPTER 94.
WHEREAS, title to certain lands in New Castle County is presently held by the State of Delaware as trustees of a trust established by the Will of John Ferris; and
WHEREAS, the Ferris trust is presently administered by the Secretary of the Department of Services for Children, Youth and Their Families as successor trustee to the State Division of Correction of the Department of Health and Social Services and State Department of Correction; and
WHEREAS, the Secretary of the Department of Services for Children, Youth and Their Families has determined that a portion of Ferris trust land of approximately 50 acres, more or less, is excess of its reasonably foreseeable needs; and
WHEREAS, the General Assembly finds that the 50 acres, more or less, which are the subject of this Act, and which are to be more specifically described in a deed for said land, have been reported to it as excess property by the Secretary of the Department of Services for Children, Youth and Their Families, are presently subject to no use, were acquired in trust by the State of Delaware at no cost to the State, bear a present value not less than the highest per acre value of those valuations determined by three Independent real estate appraisers, is not needed by any other state or local governmental agency, and will be put to the highest and best use in the interest of the State of Delaware and the beneficiaries of the trust if the Hewlett—Packard Company acquires same; and
WHEREAS, the findings set forth in the immediately preceding paragraph are made in lieu of findings by the State Surplus Real Property Commission pursuant to 29 Del. C. §9405; and
WHEREAS, sale of said 50 acre parcel, more or less, will result in the realization of substantial cash proceeds which will inure to the interest of beneficiaries of the Ferris Trust and the people of the State of Delaware; and
WHEREAS, the Hewlett--Packard Company has offered to purchase said 50 acre surplus parcel, more or less, at a confirmatory appraisal price to be established as the highest per acre price for the land resulting from the appraisals of three (3) independent professional real estate appraisers; and
WHEREAS, the establishment of the confirmatory appraisal price for the subject land pursuant to Section 2 of this Act assures compliance with the legal fiduciary duty of the State of Delaware as trustee to secure the maximum and full market value for said land; and
WHEREAS, approval of the sale of the subject parcel by the State has been petitioned for by the Secretary of the Department of Services for Children, Youth and Their Families in litigation styled In the Matter of the Sale and Conversion of Certain Trust Property of the Ferris Trust, C.M. No. 4908, in the Court of Chancery in and for New Castle County; and
WHEREAS, questions have been raised In the litigation in the Court of Chancery regarding the need for General Assembly approval of the sale pursuant to 7 Del. C §4518 and 29 Del C. Chapter 94 and as to who has standing to seek court approval of such transaction; and
WHEREAS, it is the desire of the General Assembly that a sale of the subject lands to the Hewlett—Packard Company should occur, which sale might be lost if there were protracted litigation over these question; and
WHEREAS, the General Assembly finds and declares that the proposed sale of property at the highest appraised value provides a public benefit, serves the public interest, and is in the interest of the Ferris trust.
SE IT ENACTED BY THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF THE STATE OF DELAWARE:
Section 1. The Secretary of the Department of Services for Children, Youth and Their Families is hereby authorized, on behalf of the State of Delaware, to convey by deed 50 acres, more or less, of John Ferris trust property to the Hewlett-Packard Company, being more specifically referred to as a portion of the westernmost section of New Castle County Tax Parcel No. 07-032.30-010 and the precise metes and bounds of which shall be agreed upon by the Hewlett-Packard Company and the Secretary of the Department of Services for Children, Youth and Their Families prior to sale and which shall be recorded at the Office of New Castle County Recorder of Deeds.
Section 2. The price per acre for the land conveyed pursuant to Section 1 shall be known as the confirmatory appraisal price. The confirmatory appraisal price shall be the highest price per acre derived from appraisals conducted by three (3) independent professional real estate appraisers.
Section 3. The General Assembly hereby authorizes and approves the petition filed with the Court of Chancery in and for New Castle County by the Secretary of the Department of Services for Children, Youth and Their Families seeking approval of sale of the land to the Hewlett-Packard Company pursuant to 12 Del. C. §3533. The conveyance of the land to the Hewlett-Packard Company shall be consummated after approval of said sale by the Court of Chancery.
Section 4. The provisions of 7 Del. C. Chapter 45 and those of 29 Del. C. Chapter 94 shall not apply to the sale described in Section 1 of this Act. It is the intention of the General Assembly that the value of the subject land in any such sale shall be established by professional appraisals as set forth in Section 2, above.
Section 5. Nothing in this Act shall be construed as applying to any other transaction or as deciding any issues relating to the need to obtain General Assembly approval in order to convey trust property in any future sale of such property or relating to the standing of the Secretary of the Department of Services for Children, Youth and Their Families regarding his power to convey trust property in any future sale of such property.
Section 6. Proceeds realized from the sale of Ferris property referenced by this Act shall be deposited into the Ferris Trust. All proposed expenditures of these funds, or income earned from these funds, shall be appropriated and expended in accordance with the intentions of the Ferris Trust and in conformity with the Annual Appropriations Act of the State of Delaware.
Section 7. Conveyance of the land described in section 1 of this Act to Hewlett-Packard Company shall be conditioned upon execution and recording of a declaration of restrictions that provide that no road, lane or street that would provide said property with access to Centre Road shall be constructed unless and until said property is rezoned to 0-2 zoning classification or its subsequent equivalent.
Section 8. Conveyance of the land described in Section 1 of this Act to Hewlett-Packard Company shall be conditioned upon execution and recording of a declaration of restrictions that provide that prior to a conveyance of said property, or a portion thereof, by Hewlett-Packard Company to some third party the property, or portion thereof, must be offered to the State of Delaware, by delivery of a copy of the bona fide contract to the Governor, President Pro Tempore of the Senate and the Speaker of the House of Representatives, at the same price and upon the same terms as the bona fide contract and the State of Delaware shall be permitted a period of ninety (90) days to decide if the option to purchase shall be exercised.
Approved July 16, 1990.