TITLE 9

Counties

Provisions Affecting All Counties

CHAPTER 7. PARK DISTRICTS

Subchapter II. Organization; Elections


In organizing any park district under this chapter not less than 100 legal voters resident within the limits of such proposed park district may petition the county government to cause the question to be submitted to the legal voters of such proposed park district whether they will organize as a park district. Such petition shall clearly describe the territory intended to be embraced in such district and the name of such proposed district.

9 Del. C. 1953, § 710; 52 Del. Laws, c. 42; 55 Del. Laws, c. 85, § 6B.;

Such organization petition should be filed in the office of the clerk of the county government or clerk of the peace.

9 Del. C. 1953, § 711; 52 Del. Laws, c. 42; 55 Del. Laws, c. 85, § 6C.;

(a) Upon the filing of such organization petition the county government, by ordinance or resolution, may order an election to be held in such proposed district, and in such order fix the time, not less than 30 days nor more than 60 days after the date of filing of the petition, at which an election may be held to determine such question and to elect 7 commissioners as provided in this chapter.

(b) The county government shall fix as many polling places within the boundaries of such proposed district as would be provided in a primary election and shall name the persons to act as judges and clerks at such election.

(c) Thereupon the clerk of the county government or clerk of the peace shall give 20 days notice of said election by publishing 1 notice of the same in at least 1 newspaper, if any be published in said proposed district, or if none be published in said proposed district, then in 1 or more newspapers of general circulation in the proposed district, or if there be no newspaper of general circulation in said proposed district, then by causing said notice to be posted in 5 public places within such proposed district.

9 Del. C. 1953, § 712; 52 Del. Laws, c. 42; 55 Del. Laws, c. 85, § 6D.;

The question for establishment of a park district and for election of park commissioners shall be presented in the following form:

(1) The question shall be stated as follows:

(Insert name of district) Park District

In accordance with the provisions of Chapter 7, Title 9, of the Delaware Code a petition has been filed to submit to the voters of the proposed (insert name of district) Park District the following question,

"Shall the (insert name of district) Park District be established?"

For

Against

(2) The park commissioners shall be voted upon as follows:

a.1. If the territory of the proposed park district includes no more than 1 hundred or more than 7 hundreds then all commissioners shall be voted upon at large and the 7 candidates with the greatest number of votes shall be declared elected.

2. If the proposed park district includes part or all of the territory of 2 hundreds but no more than 2, then 3 of the commissioners shall be elected from among nominees from each hundred and 1 shall be elected from among nominees for commissioner-at-large.

3. If the proposed park district includes territory of 3 hundreds then 2 commissioners shall be elected from each hundred and 1 at large.

4. If the district includes territory of 4, 5, 6, or 7 hundreds, then 1 commissioner shall be elected from each hundred and the remainder, if any, 3, 2, 1, or none, respectively, shall be elected at large.

b. All voters may vote for 7 candidates, whether or not the voter is a resident of the hundred or hundreds from which the candidates have been nominated but a voter may vote for only as many candidates from each hundred or at large as there are commissioners to be elected from each hundred or at large. Where 1, 2, or 3 commissioners are to be elected from nominees from a particular hundred or at large, then the person or 2 or 3 persons respectively with the highest number of votes from among the nominees from that hundred or at large shall be declared elected.

c. The voting for commissioners shall be set up about as follows:

For Park Commissioner(s) From (insert name) Hundred Vote for (insert number)

________ (Here insert names of nominees if any, in the order

________ in which the nominating petitions are received. No

________ party symbols, slogans or other identification may

________ be used.)

(Provide 5 additional blank lines for voters to write in names if desired.)

 For Park Commissioner(s)-At-Large Vote for (insert number)

________ (Here insert names of nominees, if any, in the order

________ in which the nominating petitions are received. No

________ party symbols, slogans, or other identification may

________ be used.)

(Provide 5 additional blank lines for voters to write in names if desired.)

(3) Said ballot shall be authenticated by facsimile signature of the clerk of the county government or clerk of the peace upon the reverse side thereof.

9 Del. C. 1953, § 713; 52 Del. Laws, c. 42; 55 Del. Laws, c. 85, § 6E.;

The judges at such organization election shall make return thereof to the county government. The county government shall canvass such returns and shall enter a resolution upon the records of the county government determining and declaring the results of the election.

9 Del. C. 1953, § 714; 52 Del. Laws, c. 42; 55 Del. Laws, c. 85, § 6F.;

In case a majority of the votes cast upon the question so submitted shall be in favor of the establishment of such district, said district shall then be deemed organized.

9 Del. C. 1953, § 715; 52 Del. Laws, c. 42.;

Candidates for park commissioner elected at the election to determine whether or not a park district shall be formed shall be nominated in the same manner and form as prescribed in § 718 of this title with the following exceptions:

(1) The nominating petition shall be filed with the clerk of the county government or clerk of the peace;

(2) Signatures of 200 legal voters upon the nominating petition shall be sufficient; and

(3) The nominating petition shall be filed not less than 15 days prior to the date of the election.

9 Del. C. 1953, § 716; 52 Del. Laws, c. 42; 55 Del. Laws, c. 85, § 6G.;

Except as otherwise provided in this chapter, within 30 days after declaration of the result of the election to organize a district, the 7 persons elected as commissioners shall meet and decide by lot the term for which each shall hold office. Three shall serve for 6 years; 2 shall serve for 4 years; and 2 shall serve for 2 years, respectively, from the date in the next even year an election would otherwise be held, as specified in § 719 of this title or until their successors shall be duly elected and qualified. It is the purpose of this section that the first members of the board shall serve until the date an election would otherwise be held in the next even year, in addition to their 6-, 4- and 2-year terms.

9 Del. C. 1953, § 717; 52 Del. Laws, c. 42.;

(a) Nominations of candidates for the office of park commissioners in any park district at all succeeding elections shall be made by petition signed in the aggregate for each candidate by legal voters of such districts, equal in number to not less than 1% of the number who voted at the last preceding election for commissioners in such district, but in no case by less than 25 of such voters. The petition shall be filed with the secretary of such district not less than 30 days nor more than 60 days before the date fixed for the election of such candidate. No statement of candidacy shall be required. The petition shall state whether the nomination is for a commissioner-at-large or a commissioner from a particular hundred.

(b) The petition shall consist of sheets of uniform size and heading. Such petition shall be signed by legal voters of the district only, and opposite the signature of each signer, the signer's residence address shall be written. At the bottom of each sheet shall be added a statement, signed by an adult resident of the park district stating his or her residence address, certifying on oath or affirmation that the signatures on that sheet of said petition were signed in such resident's presence and are genuine, and that to the best of such resident's knowledge and belief the persons so signing were qualified to do so. Such sheets, before being filed, shall be fastened together at the upper edge, and numbered consecutively.

(c) Any candidate may withdraw by filing with the secretary of such district a notice of withdrawal not later than the last day upon which petitions for nominations may be filed.

(d) In all park districts the secretary of such district, shall, within 5 days after the expiration of the time for filing the nominating petitions of the candidates, certify to the board of such district the name or names of the candidate or candidates so nominated. Such certification shall contain the order of the time in which such petitions were filed with the secretary, which shall be the order in which the names of candidates shall appear upon the ballot for election; the park commissioners shall cause the ballots to be printed and furnished for such election, and the authenticity of ballots shall be certified by the facsimile signature of the secretary printed thereon.

(e) Names of such candidates shall be printed upon the election ballot in capital letters not less than 1/8 nor more than 1/4 of an inch in height; and at the beginning of each line in which a name of a candidate is printed a square shall be printed, the sides of which shall not be less than 1/4 of an inch in length, and immediately above the names suitable words printed designating the number of candidates to be voted for such office. Such ballot shall be printed upon plain, substantial white paper but shall have no political party name, platform or principle thereon designated, nor shall any circle be printed upon the ballot.

9 Del. C. 1953, § 718; 52 Del. Laws, c. 42; 70 Del. Laws, c. 186, § 1.;

(a) The commissioners shall be elected for 6-year terms in all districts now organized or organized after May 20, 1959, with the exception provided in § 717 of this title as to those first elected.

(b) In all park districts, commissioners shall be elected biennially in even years to take the place of those whose terms expire. Such elections shall take place on the first Tuesday in November of even years.

(c) Commissioners shall serve until their successors are elected and qualified.

(d) Notice of the time and place or places of holding such elections shall be given by the commissioners of the park district by publishing the same once in 1 or more newspapers, if there be any published in the district, at least 10 days prior to the election; if none be published in said district, then in 1 or more newspapers of general circulation in the district; if there be no newspaper of general circulation in the district, then by causing said notice to be posted in 5 public places within the district.

9 Del. C. 1953, § 719; 52 Del. Laws, c. 42.;

The park board shall conduct the election, establish precincts and polling places therein, and appoint the judges and clerks of election and fix their compensation; provided that if any other election is held at the same time, the park board may appoint the same judges and clerks of election as are appointed for such other election, and such judges and clerks of election shall also be paid for their services by such district in such amount as the board shall determine. Separate ballot boxes shall be used to receive the ballots cast for park commissioners, and separate returns of the votes cast with such ballots shall be made to the board of commissioners and said board shall, within 5 days after such election, canvass said returns and declare the result of said election and enter a record of such canvass and declaration upon its records.

9 Del. C. 1953, § 720; 52 Del. Laws, c. 42.;

Whenever any member of the governing board of any park district shall:

(1) Die,

(2) Resign,

(3) Become insane,

(4) Cease to be a legal voter in said district,

(5) Be convicted of any infamous crime,

(6) Refuse or neglect to take his or her oath of office, or

(7) Neglect to attend the duties of his or her office or attend meetings of the board for such length of time as such board shall by ordinance fix,

said office may be declared vacant. Vacancies shall be declared, and may be filled by appointment by a majority of the remaining members of the board, and any person so appointed shall hold that person's office until the next regular election for members of the board when a successor for the unexpired term shall be elected.

9 Del. C. 1953, § 721; 52 Del. Laws, c. 42; 70 Del. Laws, c. 186, § 1.;