OF THE LEVY COURT.
AN ACT Reorganizing the Levy Court of Kent County, and Defining its Powers and Duties.
Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the State of Delaware in General Assembly met:
SECTION 1. That from and after the first Monday in June, A. D. 1898, the Levy Court of Kent county no-w organized and constituted, be and the same shall be abolished, and the terms, duties and powers of office of the levy Court Commissioners now composing the Levy Court of Kent county are hereby declared to be terminate and ended on the said first Monday in June, A. D. 1898.
SECTION 2. That from and after the said first Monday in June, A. D. 1898, the Levy Court of Kent County shall be composed of ten members, one [of] whom shall be chosen from each of the ten Representative Districts into which Kent county is divided by the Constitution of this State, in the manner hereinafter provided.
SECTION 3. That in order to carry into effect the purposes of this act, James T. Truax, be and he is hereby appointed. Levy Court Commissioner for Representative District number one, James A. Clifton for number five, John C. Gruwell for number six, Joseph A. Frear for number seven, and Walter L. Jones, for number nine, who shall hold their office respectively until the first Tuesday in February, A. D. 1901, and until their successors shall be duly elected and qualified. That David M. Clouds be and he is hereby appointed Levy Court Commissioner for Representative District number two, Henry E. Mabrey for number three, Benjamin C. Cubbage for number four, Nathaniel J. Lank for number eight, and Joshua D. Hill for number ten, who shall hold their office respectively until the first Tuesday in February, A.D. 1899, and until their successors are duty elected and qualified.
SECTION 4. That at the general election to be held in the year A. D. 1898 and every fourth year thereafter, there shall be elected for the term of four years from among the resident freeholders from each of the Representative Districts to wit: numbers two, three, four, eight and ten by the qualified voters thereof, one person to be Levy Court Commissioner of Kent County. The persons elected at the said general election in the year A. D. 1898 shall hold their respective offices until the first Tuesday in February, A. D. 1903 and until their successors are duly elected and qualified. And at the general election to be held in the year A. D. Iwo and every fourth year thereafter, there shall be elected for the term of four years from among the resident freeholders in each of the following Representative Districts, to wit: numbers one, five, six, seven, and nine by the qualified voters thereof, one person to be a Levy Court Commissioner of Kent County. The persons elected at the said general election in the year A.D. 1900 shall hold their respective offices until the first Tuesday in February, A. D. 1905 and until their successors are duly elected and qualified.
SECTION 5. The persons appointed Levy Court Commissioners under the provisions of this act shall meet for organization on the second Tuesday in June, A.D. 1898, and shall take the oath of office now provided by law for Levy Court Commissioners ; and shall organize by electing one of their number presiding officer, and ill case ally two of said Levy Court Commissioner; shall receive can equal and highest number of votes for said presiding officer, and in case there shall be a tie vote on any other question whatsoever, (all the members of said Levy Court being present and voting) the Clerk of the Peace of Kent County, or such other person as may hereafter he the Clerk of said Levy Court, shall have the deciding vote. Six of said Levy Court Commissioners shall be sufficient for organization and shall constitute a quorum for the transaction of business. The said Levy Court Commissioners shall have power to make rules for their government not inconsistent with the Constitution and laws of the State of Delaware; and after their said first meeting they shall meet at the County Building in the town of Dover on the first Tuesday in each and every month in each and every year, excepting the months of June, July, August and September. In case of death, resignation or removal from the district of any commissioner elected or appointed under the provisions of this act, it shall be the duty of the Governor to appoint some suitable person to fill such unexpired term, having the qualifications herein before required in that behalf. The Levy Court Commissioners appointed and to be elected under the provisions of this act, shall have full and complete jurisdiction over all and every the matters and things now vested by law in the Levy Court of Kent County as at present constituted, and in the several members thereof, and shall exercise every power, privilege, right and duty which now belongs to the Levy Court of Kent County, as fully and completely as the Levy Court now by law is authorized to do, except as the same is or may be modified by the provisions of this act. Should any two or more persons voted for as Levy Court Commissioners of any district receive an equal and highest number of votes cast at any election, the Board of Canvass shall certify the fact to the Governor, who shall forthwith select one of said persons to be Levy Court Commissioner from said district, who shall hold the said office for two years from the first Tuesday in February then next, and at the general election then next to be held in said county a successor shall be elected in said district for the unexpired term of two years. The Levy Court Commissioners appointed and to be elected, under the provisions of this act shall be paid as compensation for their services the yearly sum of two hundred dollars, in quarterly installments of fifty-dollars each, in lieu of all other compensation, by warrants duly drawn on the County Treasurer. That it shall be the duty of the present Levy Court of Kent county and every commissioner thereof, and every person having control or possession of any records, books, papers or other property belonging to the said Levy Court of said county, on the said first Tuesday in June A.D. 1898, to surrender and deposit the same with the Clerk of the Peace of the said county, who shall keep the same subject to the control of the Levy Court Commissioners appointed under the provision of this act. And in case the said Levy Court or any commissioner thereof, or any other person having possession thereof as aforesaid, shall neglect or refuse on demand of said Levy Court Commissioners appointed as aforesaid to surrender and deliver up such records, books, papers or other property to the said Clerk of the Peace in and for Kent county, such and every person so neglecting and refusing as aforesaid shall be guilty of a misdemeanor and upon conviction thereof shall forfeit and pay a fine of five hundred dollars and be imprisoned for the term of one year or until the said records, books, papers or other property shall be delivered into the custody of the said Levy Court Commissioner.
SECTION 6. That the said Levy Court Commissioners at their meeting in March, A.D. 1898, and in each and every year thereafter, after having settled with the collectors of the said several districts as hereinafter provided, shall appoint for each of the said ten representative districts one qualified voter resident therein, to be collector of taxes of said district for the year in which he shall be appointed, shall have all the power and authority and be subject to all the requirements, qualifications and duties heretofore imposed upon collectors of taxes in and for the County aforesaid. It shall be the duty of said several collectors in said county to make a full and complete settlement with the said Levy court in January in each and every year, at which time the said Levy Court shall allow each of said collectors such errors, delinquents and uncollectable taxes as it shall deem meet and proper. After such errors, delinquents and uncollectable taxes and the per centum hereinbefore provided for shall be allowed and deducted from the aggregate amount of the duplicate delivered to each of said collectors, if then any or all of said collectors are in arrears to said county, such collector or collectors as are so in arrears shall be ineligible for re-appointment unless such arrearages shall be immediately paid over to the County Treasurer of said County.
SECTION 7. That from and after the said first Tuesday in February, A. D. 1899, the terms of office of the several trustees of the poor theretofore appointed by the said Levy Court of Kent county shall then be terminated and ended and the Levy Court Commissioners appointed and to be elected by and under the authority of this act, be and they are hereby authorized and directed, and it shall be their duty to appoint for each of said representative districts a qualified voter of and a resident in the district, and the persons so appointed shall compose the trustees of the poor for Kent County. The said Levy Court shall at its first meeting in February, A. D. 1899, appoint from the even numbered districts five trustees of the poor who shall serve until the February meeting of the said Levy Court in the year A.D. 1900, when their successors shall be appointed by the said Levy Court for the term of two years, and likewise every two years thereafter. And five other trustees shall be appointed by said Levy Court at its first said meeting in February A.D. 1899, from the odd numbered districts, who shall serve until the February meeting of the said Levy Court in the year A.D. 1901, when their successors shall be appointed by the said Levy Court for the term of two years and likewise every two years thereafter. In case of a vacancy or vacancies happening by death or otherwise the Levy Court shall at any meeting thereof fill the same for the unexpired term. In addition to the powers and duties now possessed and imposed upon the trustees of the poor of Kent county aforesaid, it shall be their duty to certify to the Levy Court on or before the first Tuesday in March A. D. 1899, and in each and every year thereafter an estimated amount of the appropriation which it will require for the maintenance of the Almshouse for the year succeeding, beyond the produce and income derived from the Almshouse farm ; and the said Levy Court shall levy a proper rate for that purpose, to be levied with the other county rates, almshouse and to be collected by the county collector of said county as provided by this act.
SECTION 8. That for all work and labor required to be done upon the public roads of said county, or for the construction, repairs and maintenance of bridges which are maintained at public expense, and for materials, tools, implements and machinery to be furnished, had, used, for, or on account of said county, where the cost in any particular case, section or district which may be established by said Levy Court which will probably exceed the sum of two hundred dollars, the Levy Court shall publicly invite sealed proposals for the doing of such work and for the furnishing of such materials, tools, implements and machinery, and shall give the contract to the lowest, competent and responsible bidder or bidders, and the said Levy Court shall require of such bidder or bidders a bond to the State of Delaware in double the amount of such Bond for bid with surety or sureties to be approved by the said Levy Court for the faithful performance of such contract.
SECTION 9. That it shall be the duty of the said Levy Court of Kent county, at its meeting in March A.D. 1899, and in each and every year thereafter, to appoint for each of said ten representative districts one or more qualified voters resident therein to be overseer or overseers of roads whose duties, powers, qualifications and requirements shall be the same as now required and imposed by law upon road overseers, except as herein provided. Provided, that said Levy Court shall not assign to any of said road overseers a road lying partly in two or more districts. And provided further, that where a road is the dividing line between two districts an overseer therefor may he appointed from either district. And it shall be the duty of each of said Levy Court Commissioners on such day or days in February A. D. 1899, as he shall designate, and in each and every year thereafter, to settle with the said road overseers in his district at some central and convenient place to be by him designated, notice of which time and place of meeting shall be given to each of said several road overseers by each of said Levy Court Commissioners, either in person or by letter, at least ten days before the time of meeting, and the said Levy Court Commissioners shall make a report in writing to said Levy Court at its next session, which said report shall show an itemized statement of all moneys received and expended by each of said road overseers, accompanied by vouchers and receipts for all items. Provided that no per diem or mileage shall be allowed to any road overseer or Levy Court Commissioner for or on account of attending said meeting.
SECTION 10. That the said Levy Court shall, on the first Tuesday in March, A. D. 1899, and in each and every year thereafter, appoint for each of the said several ten representative districts, at least one and not more than three qualified voters, resident therein, to be constable or constables for the said district for the year in which they shall be appointed, and who shall have all the power and authority, and shall be subject to all the requirements, qualifications and duties heretofore imposed or obligated by law, upon constables in and for the county aforesaid.
SECTION 11. The said Levy Court in selecting grand and petit jurors shall apportion the number required by law among the several representative districts equally.
SECTION 12. That the votes of a majority of all the members elected to said Levy Court shall be necessary to elect or appoint all officers that said Levy Court is now or may be hereinafter authorized by law to elect or appoint. Provided that in case of a tie between the two candidates receiving the highest number of votes, the Clerk of the Peace of said Kent county, or such other person as may hereafter be the Clerk of said Levy Court shall have the deciding vote, as hereinbefore provided for.
SECTION 13. That all existing laws in relation to the Levy Court of Kent county shall be applicable to the Levy Court of Kent county as composed and constituted under the provisions of this act, so far as they are consistent herewith.
SECTION 14. All acts or parts of acts inconsistent with this act are hereby repealed.
Approved May 19 A.D. 1898.