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Introduced Version Senate Bill 280 History

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Senate Bill No. 280

(By Senators McCabe, Bailey, Foster and Plymale)

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[Introduced January 21, 2008; referred to the Committee on Economic Development; and then to the Committee on Finance.]

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A BILL to amend and reenact §8-13B-3, §8-13B-5, §8-13B-7 and §8-13B-14 of the Code of West Virginia, 1931, as amended, all relating to modifying the Downtown Redevelopment Act to promote development of municipal areas which are unusable without extraordinary expenditures.

Be it enacted by the Legislature of West Virginia:
That §8-13B-3, §8-13B-5, §8-13B-7 and §8-13B-14 of the Code of West Virginia, 1931, as amended, be amended and reenacted, all to read as follows:
ARTICLE 13B. DOWNTOWN REDEVELOPMENT DISTRICTS.
§8-13B-3. Definitions.
For purposes of this article, the term:
(1) "Committee" or "Council" means the committee established in subdivision (3) (6), subsection (d), section eighteen-a, article twenty-two, chapter twenty-nine of this code;
(2) "District" means a downtown redevelopment district created pursuant to this article;
(3) "District board" means a district board created pursuant to section ten of this article;
(4) "Downtown property" means any taxable or exempt real property which is classified for ad valorem real property tax purposes as Class IV;
(5) "Gross annual district tax revenue amount" means the total amount of consumers sales and service tax actually remitted to the Tax Commissioner by vendors maintaining places of business within the district with respect to sales made and services rendered by such vendors from a location within the district for the twelve full calendar months immediately preceding the filing of an application pursuant to section seven of this article;
(6) "Municipality" means a municipal corporation recognized as such in chapter eight of this code; and
(7) "Redevelopment expenditures" means payments for governmental functions, programs, activities, facility construction, improvements and other goods and services which a district board is authorized to perform or provide under section five of this article; and
(8) "Remediation" means measures undertaken to bring about the reconditioning or restoration of property located within the boundaries of a downtown redevelopment district project that has been affected by exploration, industrial operations, or solid waste disposal and which measures, when undertaken, will eliminate or ameliorate the existing state of such property and enable the property to be commercially developed.
§8-13B-5. Redevelopment expenditures.
Any municipality that has established a downtown redevelopment district under this article may make, or authorize to be made by a district board and other public or private parties, such redevelopment expenditures as will restore or promote the economic vitality of the district and the general welfare of the municipality, including, but not limited to, expenditures for the following purposes:
(a) Beautification of the district, by means such as landscaping and construction and erection of fountains, shelters, benches, sculptures, signs, lighting, decorations and similar amenities;
(b) Provision of special or additional public services, such as sanitation, security for persons and property and the construction and maintenance of public facilities, including sidewalks and other public areas;
(c) Making payments for principal, interest, issuance costs, any of the costs described in section eighteen of this article and appropriate reserves for bonds and other instruments and arrangements issued or entered into by the municipality for financing the expenditures of the district described in this section and to otherwise implement the purposes of this article;
(d) Providing financial support for public transportation and vehicle parking facilities open to the general public, whether or not physically situate within the district's boundaries;
(e) Acquiring, demolishing, razing, constructing, repairing, reconstructing, refurbishing, renovating, rehabilitating, expanding, altering, otherwise developing, operating and maintaining real property generally, parking facilities, commercial structures and other capital improvements to real property, fixtures and tangible personal property, whether or not physically situate within the district's boundaries;
(f) Developing plans for the architectural design of the district and portions thereof, and developing plans and programs for the future development of the district;
(g) Developing, promoting and supporting community events and activities open to the general public;
(h) Providing the administrative costs for a district management program;
(i) Providing for the usual and customary maintenance and upkeep of all improvements and amenities in the district as may be commercially reasonable and necessary to sustain its economic viability on a permanent basis;
(j) Providing any other services which the municipality or district board is authorized to perform and which the municipality does not also perform to the same extent on a municipality-wide basis;
(k) Making grants to the owners or tenants of downtown property for the purposes described in this section;
(l) Acquiring an interest in any entity or entities that own any portion of the real property situate in the district and contributing capital to any such entity or entities; and
(m) Remediation of publicly or privately owned landfills, solid waste facilities or hazardous waste sites to facilitate commercial development which would not otherwise be economically feasible; and
(m) (n) To do any and all things necessary, desirable or appropriate to carry out and accomplish the purposes of this article: Provided, That notwithstanding anything in this code to the contrary, any redevelopment expenditure made by a licensed race track, as defined in section three, article twenty-two-a, chapter twenty-nine of this code, within thirty days after such redevelopment expenditure shall have been requested in writing by the district board, shall entitle such licensed race track to receive the same recoupment from its capital reinvestment fund account as any other capital improvement expenditure described in subsection (b), section ten-c, article twenty-two-a, chapter twenty-nine of this code.
§8-13B-7. Application to committee for approval of a downtown redevelopment district project.

(a) The committee shall receive and act on applications filed with it by municipalities pursuant to section six of this article. Each such application must contain a copy of the notice described in section six of this article; a general description of the capital improvements, additional or extended services and other proposed redevelopment expenditures to be made in the district; a description of the proposed method of financing such redevelopment expenditures, together with a description of such reserves to be established for financing on-going redevelopment expenditures necessary to permanently maintain the optimum economic viability of the district following its inception: Provided, That the amounts of such reserves shall not exceed the amounts that would be required by ordinary commercial capital market considerations; a description of the sources and anticipated amounts of all such financing, including, but not limited to, proceeds from the issuance of any bonds, or other instruments, revenues from the special district excise tax and enhanced revenues from municipal business and occupation taxes, property taxes and fees; a description of the financial contribution of the municipality to the funding of redevelopment expenditures, which contribution may include, but not be necessarily limited to, incremental business and occupation taxes generated from district; a description of the financial contribution to the funding of redevelopment expenditures by the county commission of the county in which the district is situate; identification of any entities which the municipality expects to relocate their business locations from the district to another place in the state in connection with the establishment of district: Provided, however, That for purposes of this article, any such entities shall be designated "relocated entities"; a good faith estimate of the aggregate amount of consumers sales and service tax that was actually remitted to the Tax Commissioner by all relocated entities with respect to their sales made and services rendered from their business locations in the district for the twelve full calendar months next preceding the date of the application: Provided further, That for purposes of this article, such aggregate amount shall be designated as "the relocated tax revenue amount"; a good faith estimate of the gross annual district tax revenue amount; and the proposed application of any surplus from all funding sources to further the objectives of this article: And provided further, That the amount of all redevelopment expenditures proposed to be made in the first twenty-four months following the creation of the district shall be not less than fifty million dollars: And provided further, That for downtown redevelopment district projects involving remediation such twenty-four month period shall be forty-eight months. The committee may not approve a project involving remediation authorized under section five of this article unless the municipality submits clear and convincing information, to the satisfaction of the committee, that the proposed remediation expenditures to be financed by the issuance of bonds or notes pursuant to section fourteen of this article does not constitute more than twenty-five percent of the total redevelopment expenditures associated with the project. The committee may establish other criteria for approving such applications: And provided further, That the committee shall act to approve or not approve any such application within thirty days following the receipt of the application: And provided further, That the committee may not approve more than one application in the absence of further authorization of the Legislature.
(b)If the committee approves a municipality's downtown redevelopment district project application, it shall issue to the municipality a written certificate evidencing such approval: Provided, That such certificate shall expressly state a base tax revenue amount which, for purposes of this article shall be the difference between the gross annual district tax revenue amount and the relocated tax revenue amount all of which the council shall have determined with respect to such district's application based on such investigation as it may deem reasonable and necessary including, but not limited to, any relevant information the council shall request from the Tax Commissioner and the Tax Commissioner shall provide to the council: Provided, however, That, in determining the base tax revenue amount, in lieu of confirmation from the Tax Commissioner of the gross annual district tax revenue amount, the council shall use the estimate of the gross annual district tax revenue amount provided by the municipality pursuant to subsection (a) of this section.
(c) The council may promulgate rules to implement the downtown redevelopment district project application approval process and to describe the criteria and procedures it has established in connection therewith. These rules are not subject to the provisions of chapter twenty-nine-a of this code, but shall be filed with the Secretary of State.
§8-13B-14. Bonds issued to finance downtown redevelopment district projects.

The governing body of a municipality may issue bonds or notes for the purpose of financing redevelopment expenditures, as described in section five of this article, with respect to one or more downtown redevelopment district projects within the municipality. All bonds issued by a municipality under the authority of this article shall be limited obligations of the municipality. No municipality may issue notes, bonds or other instruments for funding district projects or improvements that exceed a repayment schedule of forty years. The maximum repayment schedule of bonds issued to finance remediation authorized under section five of this article may not exceed twenty years. The principal and interest on such bonds shall be payable out of the funds on deposit in the subaccount established for the downtown redevelopment district pursuant to section eight of this article, including without limitation any funds derived from the special district excise tax imposed by section eleven of this article, or other revenues derived from the downtown redevelopment project to the extent pledged for such purpose by the governing body of the municipality in the resolution authorizing the bonds. To the extent that the average daily amount on deposit in the subaccount established for a district pursuant to section eight of this article exceeds, for more than six consecutive calendar months, the sum of: (1) One hundred thousand dollars; plus (2) the amount required to be kept on deposit pursuant to the documents authorizing, securing or otherwise relating to the bonds or notes issued under this section, then such excess shall be used by the district either to redeem the bonds or notes previously issued or shall be remitted to the General Fund of this state. The bonds and any interest coupons issued under the authority of this article shall never constitute an indebtedness of the municipality issuing the same within the meaning of any Constitutional provision or statutory limitation and shall never constitute or give rise to a pecuniary liability of the municipality issuing the same. Neither shall such bond nor interest thereon be a charge against the general credit or taxing powers of the municipality and such fact shall be plainly stated on the face of each such bond. Such bonds may be executed, issued and delivered at any time and from time to time; may be in such form and denomination; may be of such tenor, must be negotiable but may be registered as to the principal thereof or as to the principal and interest thereof; may be payable in such amounts and at such time or times; may be payable at such place or places; may bear interest at such rate or rates payable at such place or places and evidenced in such manner; and may contain such provisions therein not inconsistent herewith, all as shall be provided in the proceedings of the governing body of the municipality whereunder the bonds shall be authorized to be issued. Said bonds may be sold by the governing body of the municipality at public or private sale at, above or below par, as the governing body of the municipality shall authorize.
The bonds issued pursuant to this article shall be signed by the mayor or other chief officer thereof and attested by the clerk, recorder or other official custodian of the records of said municipality and under the seal of the municipality. Any coupons attached thereto shall bear the facsimile signature of the mayor or other chief officer of the municipality. In case any of the officials whose signatures appear on the bonds or coupons shall cease to be such officers before the delivery of such bonds, such signatures shall, nevertheless, be valid and sufficient for all purposes to the same extent as if they had remained in office until such delivery.
If the proceeds of such bonds, by error of calculation or otherwise, shall be less than the cost of the downtown redevelopment district project, or if additional real or personal property is to be added to the downtown redevelopment district project or if it is determined that financing is needed for additional redevelopment expenditures, additional bonds may in like manner be issued to provide the amount of the deficiency, or to defray the cost of acquiring or financing such additional real or personal property or such redevelopment expenditures, and unless otherwise provided for in the trust agreement, mortgage or deed of trust, shall be deemed to be of the same issue, and shall be entitled to payment from the same fund, without preference or priority, and shall be of equal priority as to any security.


NOTE: The purpose of this bill is to promote development of municipal areas which are unusable without extraordinary expenditures.

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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