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Introduced Version Senate Bill 561 History

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sb561 intr
Senate Bill No. 561

(By Senators Plymale and Jenkins)

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[Introduced March 16, 2005; referred to the Committee

on Government Organization; and then to the Committee on Finance.]

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A BILL to amend and reenact section 7, chapter 26 of the Acts of the Legislature, regular session, 1925 (municipal charters), as last amended by chapter 110, Acts of the Legislature, regular session, 2003, relating to authorizing the Greater Huntington Park and Recreation District to impose certain fees upon the approval of a majority of its qualified electors voting at an election for such purpose and issue bonds.

Be it enacted by the Legislature of West Virginia:
That section 7, chapter 26, Acts of the Legislature, regular session, 1925 (municipal charters), as last amended by chapter 110, Acts of the Legislature, regular session, 2003, be amended and reenacted to read as follows:
GREATER HUNTINGTON PARK AND RECREATION DISTRICT.
§7. Financing and financial powers.

The park district shall have the following powers to:
(1) Make charges to the public for services offered or goods sold by the park district.
(a) Charges for services may be in the form of, but not limited to: Admission and entrance fees; exclusive use and rental fees; user fees; license and permit fees; equipment rental; program maintenance fees; instructor fees; special accommodation fees; amusement fees; restricted membership fees; and cemetery service fees.
(b) Charges for goods sold may be in the forms of, but not limited to: Beverages and foods; novelties and gifts; clothing; athletic equipment and supplies; cemetery plots, crypts, monuments, memorials, markers, vaults and any other forms of merchandise sold in connection with the burial of the dead; and other items that may pertain to the operation and maintenance of the park district.
(2) Impose upon the users of the park system reasonable service fees in addition to the service fees authorized by Section 7(1) (a) hereof. Such service fees shall be collected in such manner as may be specified in one or more resolutions adopted by the board of directors of the park district. Such service fees may be imposed on residents of the district on a per resident basis, on households within the district on a per household basis, on persons employed within the district on a per employee basis or in any other reasonable manner as specified in the resolution imposing such service fee. For purposes of the preceding sentence, the term "employee" shall mean any individual who is employed at or physically reports to one or more locations within the district and is on the payroll of an employer, on a full or part-time basis, in exchange for salary, wages or other compensation. The proceeds of such service fees shall be used to provide for the continuance, maintenance and improvement of the park system. Any resolution imposing a service fee may prescribe reasonable penalties in the form of fines for violation of such resolution which may be imposed by the district. The fines shall be recovered, imposed or enforceable under the judgment of the district?s board and may be suspended upon reasonable conditions as may be imposed by the board. The district may also maintain a civil action in the name of the district in either of the circuit courts in the counties in which the district is located to compel compliance with such resolution and the circuit court has the authority to grant the relief sought and to assess costs against the defendant. Any resolution imposing such a service fee shall not become effective until it shall be ratified by a majority of the legal votes cast thereon by the gualified voters of the district at a general, primary or special election, as the board of the district shall direct. The ballot guestion at such election need not recite the entire resolution imposing the service fee, but shall be sufficient if it summarizes the service fee, the manner in which it will be imposed, the general use to which the proceeds of the service fee shall be put and recites that penalties may be imposed on those who fail to pay such service fee. From time to time the district?s board may submit additional resolutions imposing service fees to the district?s electors for approval pursuant to this section. The failure of any such subsequent resolutions to gain approval shall not impact the legality or existence of any resolution which has been previously approved by the district?s qualified electors. Notice of any election hereunder shall be given by publication, within fourteen consecutive days next preceding the date of the election, of the resolution imposing such service fee as a Class II legal advertisement in compliance with the provisions of article three, chapter fifty-nine of this code and the publication area for such publication shall be the district. All of the provisions of the general election laws of this state concerning general, primary or special elections, when not in conflict with the provisions of this section, shall apply to elections hereunder, insofar as practicable.
(2) (3) Annually levy on each one hundred dollars of the assessed valuation of the property taxable in said park district, within the corporate boundaries of the city of Huntington according to the last assessment thereof for state and county purposes, as follows:
On Class I property, one and one-half cents; on Class II property, three cents; on Class IV property, six cents. The park district may levy a lesser amount, in which case the above levies shall be reduced proportionately. These levies shall be made at the time and in the manner provided by article eight, chapter eleven of the code of West Virginia, one thousand nine hundred thirty-one, as amended; except that the levies shall be included in the maximum rates for the city of Huntington as established by law.
After the park district has made the levy, it shall certify to the finance director of the city of Huntington the amount of the said levy, and the finance director shall thereupon extend the levy upon the tax tickets, and all levies made by the park district shall be collected by the finance director who shall occupy a fiduciary relationship with the park district, and then such levy funds shall be paid to the park district upon written order of the park district signed by the president of the park district and countersigned by the secretary of the park district.
Levies for support, maintenance and operation.
(3) (4) In order to ensure adequate support for the maintenance and operation of the park district the following governing authorities shall, upon written request by the park district levy annually as follows within the respective taxing districts of the governing authorities, on each one hundred dollars of assessed valuation of the property taxable in the area served by it according to the last assessment for state and county purposes, amounts not exceeding the following amounts for fiscal year beginning the first day of July, one thousand nine hundred eighty- three:
(a) The county commission of Cabell County, for the first year of the act and annually thereafter: Class I, .433 cents; class II, .866 cents; class III and class IV, 1.73 cents.
(b) The county commission of Wayne County, for the first year of the act and annually thereafter; Class I, .0066 cents; class II, .0132 cents; class III and class IV, .0266 cents.
(c) The board of education of the county of Cabell shall provide funds available to the board through special and excess
levies for the first year of the act and annually thereafter: Class I, .433 cents; class II, .866 cents; class III and class IV, 1.73 cents.
(d) The city of Huntington, for the first year of the act and annually thereafter: Class I, one and three-tenths cents; class II, two and six-tenths cents; class III and IV, five and two-tenths cents.
(e) The town of Milton, for the first year of the act and annually thereafter: Class I, one and three-tenths cents; class II, two and six-tenths cents; class III and class IV, five and two- tenths cents.
In addition to the aforesaid amounts which, upon written request by said board, the governing authorities shall levy, each such governing authority may support the park district with any other general or special revenues or excess levies. All income realized by the operation of the park district from any sources other than the above levies shall be used by the board of directors for support of the park district.
All money collected or appropriated by the foregoing governing authorities for park district purposes shall be deposited in a special account of the park district and shall be disbursed by that board for the purpose of operating such park district.
(4) (5) Assess the cost of improvements to or construction of streets, sidewalks, sewers, curbs, alleys, public ways or
easements, or portions thereof, upon the abutting property owners whose property lies within the park district. Such assessments shall require approval of a majority of the commissioners present and voting, and shall be commenced and conducted in such manner as is prescribed by article eighteen, chapter eight of the code of West Virginia, one thousand nine hundred thirty-one, as amended.
(5) (6) The municipalities of Huntington and Milton, and the counties of Cabell and Wayne are hereby empowered, and authorized to issue, in the manner prescribed by law, revenue bonds or general obligation bonds, for the purpose of raising funds to establish, construct, improve, extend, develop, maintain or operate, a system of public parks and recreational facilities for the city or counties, or to refund any bonds of the city or counties, the proceeds of which were expended in the establishing, constructing, improving, extending, developing, maintaining or operating of such public park and recreation system or any part thereof. Any bonds issued for any of the purposes stated in this section shall contain in the title or subtitle thereto the words "public park and recreation bonds," in order to identify the same, and shall be of such form, denomination and maturity and shall bear such rate of interest as shall be fixed by ordinance of the governing body of the city or counties. The governing body may provide for the issuance of bonds for other lawful purposes of the city of counties in the same ordinance in which provision shall be made for the issuance of bonds under the provisions of this section. The park district shall pay all of the costs and expenses of any election which shall be held to authorize the issuance of public park and recreation bonds only. The costs and expenses of holding an election to authorize the issuance of public park and recreation bonds and bonds for other city or county purposes shall be paid by the park district and the city or counties respectively, in the proportion that the public park and recreation bonds bear to the total amount of bonds authorized.
Whenever the governing body of the city or counties and the requisite majority of the legal votes cast at the election thereon shall authorize in the manner prescribed by law, the issuance of bonds for the purpose of establishing, constructing, improving, extending, developing, maintaining, or operating, or any combination of the foregoing, a system of public parks and recreational facilities for the city or counties, or for refunding any outstanding bonds, the proceeds of which were applied to any of said purposes, said bonds shall be issued and delivered to the park district to be by it sold in the manner prescribed by law, and the proceeds thereof shall be paid into the treasury of the park district, and the same shall be applied and utilized by the park district for the purposes prescribed by the ordinance authorizing the issuance of such bonds. In any ordinance for the issuance of bonds for such purposed, it shall be a sufficient statement of the purposes for creating the debt to specify that the same is for the purpose of establishing, constructing, improving, extending, developing, maintaining or operating, or any combination of the foregoing, a public park and recreation system for the city or counties, without specifying the particular establishment, construction, improvement, extension, development, maintenance or operation contemplated: but an ordinance for refunding bonds shall designate the issue and the number of bonds which it is proposed to refund.
(6) (7) Sue and be sued: make contracts and guarantees; incur liabilities; borrow or lend money for any time period deemed advisable by the commission, sell, mortgage, lease, exchange, transfer or otherwise dispose of its property; or pledge its property as collateral or security for any time period deemed advisable by the commission.
(7) (8) Create trusts of such kind as will expedite the efficient management of the property and other assets owned or controlled by the park district. The trustee, whether individual or corporate, in any such trust shall have a fiduciary relationship with the park district and may be removed by the park district for good cause shown or for a breach of the fiduciary relationship with the park district.
(9) The district is hereby empowered, and authorized to issue revenue bonds, for the purpose of raising funds to establish, construct, improve, extend, develop, maintain or operate, a system of public parks and recreational facilities for the district, or to refund any bonds of the district, the proceeds of which were expended in the establishing, constructing, improving, extending, developing, maintaining or operating of such public park and recreation system or any part thereof. Any bonds issued for any of the purposes stated in this section shall contain in the title or subtitle thereto the words "public park and recreation bonds," in order to identify the same. In any resolution for the issuance of bonds for such purposes, it shall be a sufficient statement of the purposes of establishing, constructing, improving, extending, developing, maintaining or operating, or any combination of the foregoing, a public park and recreation system for the district, without specifying the particular establishment, construction, improvement, extension, development, maintenance or operation contemplated: But a resolution for refunding bonds shall designate the issue which it is proposed to refund.
(a) Such revenue bonds shall bear interest at not more than twelve percent per annum, payable semiannually, or at shorter intervals, and shall mature at such time or times, not exceeding forty years, as may be determined by the resolution authorizing the issuance of such bonds. Such bonds may be made redeemable before maturity, at the option of the district, to be exercised by said board, at not more than the par value thereof, plus a premium of not more than five percent, under such terms and conditions as may be fixed by the resolution authorizing the issuance of the bonds. The principal and interest of the bonds may be made payable in any lawful medium. Such resolution shall determine the form of the bonds setting forth any registration or conversion privileges, and shall fix the denomination or denominations of such bonds, and the place or places of the payment of the principal and interest thereof, which may be at any banking institution or trust company within or without the state. The bonds shall contain a statement on their face that the district shall not be obligated to pay the same, or the interest thereon, except from the special fund derived from the revenue of any service fees charged by the district and which the district may pledge as security for such bonds. All such bonds shall be, and shall have and are hereby declared to have all the qualities and incidents of negotiable instruments, under the Uniform Commercial Code of this state. The bonds shall be executed in such manner as the board of the district may direct. The bonds shall be sold by the board of the district in such manner as may be determined to be for the best interest of the district: Provided, That said bonds shall not be negotiated at a price lower than a price which, when computed to maturity upon standard tables of bond values, will show a net return of more than thirteen percent per annum to the purchaser upon the amount paid therefor. Any surplus of the bond proceeds over and above the cost of the project, plus any amount required for reserves, capitalized interest and costs of issuance thereof, shall be paid into the sinking fund hereinafter provided for. If the proceeds of the bonds, by error of calculation, or otherwise, shall be less than the cost of the project, additional bonds may in like manner be issued to provide the amount of such deficit and, unless otherwise provided in the resolution or resolutions authorizing the issuance of the bonds first issued, or in the trust indenture hereinafter authorized, shall be deemed to be of same issue, and shall be entitled to payment without preference or priority of the bonds first issued. Prior to the preparation of the definitive bonds, interim certificates may, under like restrictions, be issued, exchangeable for definitive bonds upon the issuance of the latter.




NOTE: The purpose of this bill is to
authorize the Greater Huntington Park and Recreation District to impose certain fees with voter approval and to issue revenue bonds.

Strike-throughs indicate language that would be stricken from the present law, and underscoring indicates new language that would be added.
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