SENATE BILL NO. 194
AS AMENDED BY
SENATE AMENDMENT NO. 1
AN ACT TO AMEND AN ACT BEING CHAPTER 170, VOLUME 57, LAWS OF DELAWARE, AS AMENDED, ENTITLED "AN ACT TO REINCORPORATE THE CITY OF LEWES", TO AMEND SECTION 20, ENTITLED "POWER TO BORROW MONEY AND ISSUE BONDS", BY PERMITTING THE AMOUNT DESIRED TO BE BORROWED TO BE STATED IN A "NOT TO EXCEED" AMOUNT; CLARIFYING VOTER QUALIFICATIONS; PROVIDING FOR APPOINTMENT OF A BOARD OF ELECTION AND PROCEDURES; AUTHORIZING THE CITY TO CANCEL THE BORROWING; PROVIDING FOR BOND ANTICIPATION NOTES; PROVIDING FOR A STATUTE OF LIMITATIONS FOR CHALLENGES TO PROCEDURES OF THE CITY IN THESE MATTERS; AND PERMITTING THE ISSUANCE OF REFUNDING BONDS FOR THE PURPOSE OF REFINANCING ALL OR A PORTION OF ANY OF THE CITY'S OUTSTANDING BONDS OR OTHER INDEBTEDNESS.
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 20, Chapter 170, Volume 57, Laws of Delaware, as amended, be and the same is hereby further amended as follows:
(1) Subsection (a) of Section 20 entitled “POWER TO BORROW MONEY AND ISSUE BONDS” be and is hereby amended by striking said subsection in its entirety and substituting in lieu thereof the following:
“(a) City Council, by resolution, shall propose to the electors of The City of Lewes that a sum of money not to exceed a stated principal amount, shall be borrowed for any or all of the above purposes; the resolution shall state the maximum principal amount of money desired to be borrowed, the purpose for which it is desired, the manner of securing same, and other pertinent facts relating to the loan which are deemed pertinent by the City Council and in their possession, and shall fix a time and place for a hearing on the said resolution.”
(2) Subsection (e) of Section 20 entitled “POWER TO BORROW MONEY AND ISSUE BONDS” be and is hereby amended by striking said subsection in its entirety and substituting in lieu thereof the following:
“(e) At such Special Election,
Every individual of at least eighteen (18) years of age who is a citizen of the State of Delaware, who is a bona fide resident of the City of Lewes or of public lands under the jurisdiction of the City of Lewes, shall have one (1) vote.
(2) Non-resident property owner or leaseholder.
(a) Every non-resident owner of real property within the City or holder of public land under a valid lease from the City Council, whether an individual of at least eighteen (18) years of age, a partnership, corporation or other entity, shall have one (1) vote; provided, however, that there shall be no more than one (1) vote per parcel or lot of real property.
(b) Property owners whose property is exempt from taxation or is not assessed for taxation shall not be entitled to vote.
(c) A person, other than an individual, entitled to vote pursuant to this Subparagraph (2), shall, prior to the time any such person’s vote is cast, provide the Board of Election with a notarized certificate or resolution naming the individual who is at least eighteen (18) years of age and is a citizen of the United States who is authorized to act on behalf of such person to cast said vote. For parcels or lots owned by more than one (1) individual or entity, only one (1) owner may cast the vote of that parcel or lot.
(3) These provisions shall be construed so as to permit only ‘one-person, one vote’. Where a voter is entitled to vote by virtue of both residence and ownership of property, that voter shall be entitled to only one vote; where a voter is entitled to vote by ownership of two or more properties, that voter shall be entitled to only one vote.
(4) The books and records of The City of Lewes in the case of property owners, leaseholders and citizens of the City shall be conclusive evidence of the right of such property owners and citizens to vote at the Special Election.
(5) In the event that an individual holds a power of attorney duly executed and acknowledged and specifically authorizing the individual to vote at the said Special Election, such duly authenticated power of attorney shall be filed in the Office of the City Manager of The City of Lewes. Said power of attorney so filed shall constitute conclusive evidence of the right of said person to vote at the Special Election.”
(3) Subsection (f) of Section 20 entitled “POWER TO BORROW MONEY AND ISSUE BONDS” be and is hereby amended by striking said subsection in its entirety and substituting in lieu thereof the following:
“(f) Any Special Election held pursuant to the provisions of this section shall be conducted by voting machines, an electronic voting system or printed ballots as permitted by law which shall, at a minimum, have the following designation:
[ ] For the proposed borrowing
[ ] Against the proposed borrowing”
(4) Subsection (g) of Section 20 entitled “POWER TO BORROW MONEY AND ISSUE BONDS” be and is hereby amended by designating the following as Subsection (1) and adding the same immediately prior to and at the very beginning of the existing text of Subsection (g):
“(1) The Mayor, by and with the advice and consent of a majority of the City Council, shall appoint three (3) persons, who may or may not be registered and qualified voters in the City of Lewes, to act as a Board of Election. The polling places shall be open for a minimum of six (6) hours as specified by the resolution of the Mayor and City Council. Persons in the polling place at the time appointed for closing of the polls shall be entitled to vote. The Board of Election shall be the sole and final judges of the legality of the votes offered at such Special Election and shall keep a true and accurate list of all persons voting.”
(5) Subsection (g) of Section 20 entitled “POWER TO BORROW MONEY AND ISSUE BONDS” by and is hereby amended by designating the existing Subsection (g) (not taking into account the amendment set forth above) as Subsection (2).
(6) Subsection (h) of Section 20 entitled “POWER TO BORROW MONEY AND ISSUE BONDS” be and is hereby amended by striking said subsection in its entirety and substituting in lieu thereof the following:
“(h)(1) If a majority of the votes cast at such Special Election shall be in favor of such borrowing, the City Council shall proceed with the issuance of said bonds or other indebtedness; provided, however, that the City Council may, by resolution, at any time prior to entering into a binding agreement for the public or private sale of such bond(s) or other indebtedness, abandon the proposed borrowing. The City Council shall prepare and cause to be advertised within thirty (30) days following the date of receipt by the City of Lewes of the certificate of the Board of Election described in subsection (g) hereof, the Notice of Adoption described in subsection (k) hereof, in two (2) issues of a newspaper having general circulation in the City of Lewes.
(2) The form of the bonds or certificates of indebtedness and the thereunto attached coupons, if any, the time or times of payment, the interest rate, the classes, the series, the maturity, the registration, any callable or redeemable features, the denomination, the name thereof and any other relative or appurtenant matter thereto shall all be determined by the City Council after said Special Election.
(3) The bonds may be sold at either public or private sale as determined by the City Council. If the bonds shall be offered for public sale, The City of Lewes shall first advertise a notice of sale inviting bids thereon, in a manner to be prescribed by the City Council , at least five (5) days before the date of sale, on which date of sale bids therefore will be accepted. The bonds shall be sold to the winning bidder whose bid offers the lowest true interest cost to The City of Lewes out of all bids timely submitted.
(4) With respect to its budget, and in fixing the rate of tax, the City Council shall provide a sinking fund for the payment of interest and principal of said bonds or other indebtedness at the maturity or maturities thereof.
(5) The faith and credit of The City of Lewes shall be deemed to be pledged for the due payment of the bonds or other indebtedness and interest thereon issued under the provision hereof, when the same have been properly executed and delivered for value and there shall be no limitation upon the amount of taxes which may be raised by taxation for the payment of interest on and principal of any bonded indebtedness of The City of Lewes whether incurred before or after the passage of this Act.”
(7) Section 20 entitled “POWER TO BORROW MONEY AND ISSUE BONDS” be and is hereby amended by adding a new subsection to be designated Subsection (j) as follows:
“(j) In anticipation of the issuance of said bonds at any time after a Special Election approving the bond issue, the City Council may issue and sell bond anticipation notes of the City at either public or private sale for not less than par plus accrued interest, if any. Said notes may be renewed from time to time by the issuance of and sale of new notes. Said notes shall bear interest at a rate determined by the City Council to be fair and reasonable. All such notes shall mature and be paid not later than two (2) years from the date of issuance. The aggregate principal amount of all notes outstanding at any one time shall not exceed the aggregate principal amount of the notes authorized by the Special Elections approving such notes. Said notes shall be redeemed at par plus accrued interest, if any, prior to their maturity if the City Council shall have reserved the right to do so by an express provision in the note or notes. The principal and any interest due on said notes may be paid from the proceeds of the sale of the bonds authorized by this section. Both interest on and principal of any bond anticipation notes shall not be subject to taxation by the state of Delaware or any political subdivision thereof.”
(8) Section 20 entitled “POWER TO BORROW MONEY AND ISSUE BONDS” by and is hereby amended by adding a new subsection to be designated Subsection (k) as follows:
“(k) No action contesting any proceedings conducted, or action taken, by the City Council hereunder regarding the authorization of any bonds or other indebtedness issued under this Section shall be brought after the expiration of twenty (20) days from the publication of a Notice of Adoption in two (2) issues of a newspaper having general circulation in The City of Lewes, which Notice of Adoption shall announce the following information:
(1) That The City Council has determined to borrow a sum of money not to exceed a stated amount and to issue bonds or other indebtedness therefore;
(2) That the proposal has been approved by a majority of those casting votes at a Special Election in the City of Lewes called for the purpose of voting for or against the borrowing;
(3) The maximum principal amount of money to be borrowed and any other details of the bonds or such other indebtedness, to the extent such details are known at the time of the advertisement of such notice;
(4) The purpose for which such amount of money is to be borrowed;
(5) That any person desiring to challenge the authorization of such bond(s) or other indebtedness must bring his, her or its action within twenty (20) days from the date of publication of such notice or forever be barred from doing so; and
(6) Such notice shall be in bold print or bordered in black in such manner to call attention thereto.”
(9) Section 20 entitled “POWER TO BORROW MONEY AND ISSUE BONDS” be and is hereby amended by adding a new subsection to be designated Subsection (l) as follows:
“(l) The City Council may refund any or all outstanding bonds or other indebtedness of The City of Lewes at the maturity thereof or in accordance with any callable feature or provision contained therein but refunding of such bonds or other indebtedness of The City of Lewes shall not require the procedures set out in this Section 20 so long as the outstanding principal amount of the refunding bonds or other indebtedness does not exceed the aggregate principal amount, plus accrued interest and redemption premium, if any, of the outstanding bonds or indebtedness to be refunded, plus the costs of the refunding, and shall be enacted by resolution of the City Council.”
Approved February 3, 2004