§ 625 Petition to county government; who may petition; contents.
Fifty percent of the freeholders resident in a proposed suburban park community consisting of less than 500 persons, or 250 freeholders resident in a proposed suburban park community consisting of 500 persons or more, may present a petition to the county government to submit the question of organizing a suburban park community to a vote of electors residing in that community.
§ 626 Study of suburban park community plan by commission; hearings; notice; recommendations to county government.
(a) Promptly upon the filing of a prescribed petition, the county government shall adopt a resolution requesting the commission to make a study of the suburban park community and make its recommendations to the county government concerning the area to be included in the suburban park community and the boundaries and location of such park or recreation area.
(b) The commission shall upon receipt of a request from the county government, hold at least 1 public hearing on a proposed suburban park community plan. Notice of such hearing shall be published at least 15 days before the date of the hearing in a newspaper of general circulation in the said community and be posted in not less than 4 conspicuous public places in the proposed suburban park community. The notice shall contain the time and place of hearing, and shall specify the place and times at which the proposed suburban park community plan showing the proposed park layout and the extent of the park and recreation area and the nature of the improvements to be made, may be examined. Such notice shall also contain a description of the boundaries of the proposed suburban park community. All interested persons, residents, voters, tax payers, property owners or other persons or corporations in any way affected by the granting of such petition shall be heard on any question with respect to the location of the boundaries of the suburban park community and the proposed suburban community park plan and whether all real property included in the proposed suburban park community will be benefited by the carrying out of such plan. For the purpose of any of its public hearings under this chapter, the commission shall have power to summon witnesses, administer oaths, and compel the giving of testimony. The recommendation of the commission shall be submitted to the county government within 60 days from passage of said resolution by the county government.
(c) The commission may upon its own motion and without having received a request from the county government, and without a petition having been filed, proceed to hold a public hearing as hereinabove provided and may submit to the county government the recommendation of the commission for establishment of a suburban park community and the making of improvements therein.
§ 627 Determination of status by county government.
Within 15 days after receipt by the county government of the recommendations of the commission as hereinbefore provided, the county government shall meet and consider the evidence and testimony given at the hearing before the commission and the recommendation of such commission and determine whether a proposed community is a suburban park community as provided in § 602 of this title and whether said community should be improved by the addition of a park or recreation area, and determine what shall be the boundaries of the suburban park community and that it is in the public interest to establish such suburban park community and that all real property included within its boundaries will be benefited by the construction of the proposed park layout and the establishment of the proposed park or recreation area and the making of the improvements proposed to be made therein.
§ 628 Preparation of survey, plans, specifications and estimates.
Immediately after the determination by the county government that a community is a suburban park community, the county government shall notify the commission, which, upon receipt of such information, shall proceed to have prepared by the county engineer, surveys, plans, specifications and estimates of the cost of the park or recreation area, and of improvements requested by the petitioners, and shall determine the annual assessment required to pay principal, interest, supervision, and maintenance of the park or recreation area.
§ 629 Limitation on cost of park and improvements.
If the estimated cost of the park or recreation area and improvements submitted by the commission shall exceed 5 percent of the total assessed value of all real property and improvements in said suburban park community, as reflected by the books of the board of assessment for the county, then the county government shall not be authorized to proceed under this chapter.
§ 630 Election to approve suburban park community and authorize bond issue.
(a) Upon the submission by said commission to the county government of plans, specifications and estimates covering said park or recreation area and improvements, the county government shall proceed to set a date for an election at which all legal voters resident in the community may vote, on the question whether the county government should proceed to issue bonds in the manner hereinafter provided, in an amount sufficient to finance the cost for the acquisition of such park or recreation area and of the improvements contemplated. Said election shall be held no less than 20 days and no more than 30 days after the submission of said plans and specifications and estimates to the county government.
(b) For the purpose of determining whether the persons offering to vote at such election possess the necessary qualifications, the officers conducting such election shall inquire of every person offering to vote, the person's name, whether the person is a native born or naturalized citizen, the person's place of residence and the length of time of the person's residence in the proposed or existing suburban park community in which such election is being conducted, in the county in which such proposed or existing suburban park community is located and in the State.
(c) Every citizen who resides in the proposed suburban park community in which the election is being held and who would be entitled at the time of the holding of such election to register and vote in any election district of which the proposed suburban park community is a part, at a general election, if such general election were held on the day of such election in the proposed suburban park community, may vote at such election whether or not the citizen is at the time a registered voter.
§ 631 Notice of election.
Notice of the time and place of such election shall be published at least 15 days before the date of election in a newspaper of general circulation in the proposed suburban park community and be posted at not less than 4 conspicuous public places in the proposed suburban park community. The notice shall state that the purpose of the election is to determine whether a majority of the legal voters resident in said community is in favor of the issuance of bonds by the county government to cover the total cost for the acquisition of the park or recreation area and of the improvements contemplated. The notice shall contain a brief description of the proposed improvements and shall also state the maximum principal amount of such bonds, the maximum rate of interest to be borne by such bonds, and the amount of such bonds payable in each fiscal year, and shall set forth the aggregate amount required to be raised by tax in each fiscal year for the payment of the principal of such bonds and the interest thereon computed at such maximum rate.
§ 632 Place of holding election; times; manner of voting.
The election shall be held at such place in the proposed suburban park community as the county government shall designate and the polls shall be open from 9:00 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. of the day of the election. The voting shall be by printed ballot, which shall give the voter an opportunity clearly to indicate the voter's consent or objection to the issuance of bonds for the improvement contemplated. Such printed ballot shall state the maximum principal amount of such bonds, the maximum rate of interest to be borne by such bonds, and the amount of such bonds payable in each fiscal year, and shall set forth the aggregate amount required to be raised by tax in each fiscal year for the payment of the principal of such bonds and the interest thereon computed at such maximum rate. A majority of votes cast shall decide the matter. The clerk of the county government shall act as judge of the election.
§ 633 Tabulating votes; certificate of result.
Promptly after the holding of the election, the judge of election shall tabulate the ballots and certify the results to the county government under his or her hand and seal. The ballots shall be retained in the safekeeping of the county government for 1 year before being destroyed.
§ 634 Formation of suburban park community by county government.
Upon approval by the election the county government shall immediately establish a suburban park community and notify the commission of such community.