House Bill No. 322
Introduced By mcculloch, van valkenburg, denny, halligan, cocchiarella
A Bill for an Act entitled: An Act providing for an election on the question of enlarging a transportation district; reducing the number of signatures needed on a petition to enlarge a transportation district from 51 percent to 20 percent; and amending sections 7-14-203, 7-14-204, 7-14-207, 7-14-208, 7-14-209, 7-14-210, and 7-14-241, MCA.
Be it enacted by the Legislature of the State of Montana:
Section 1. Section 7-14-203, MCA, is amended to read:
"7-14-203. Petition to create or enlarge an urban transportation district. Proceedings for
creation of creating or
enlarging a transportation district may be initiated by a petition signed by not less than 20% of the registered electors who
reside within the proposed district or the area to be added to an existing district."
Section 2. Section 7-14-204, MCA, is amended to read:
"7-14-204. Details relating to petition. The petition under 7-14-203
shall must include a map showing the limits of the
proposed district or the area to be added to an existing district and shall must be in the form provided in Title 13, chapter
Section 3. Section 7-14-207, MCA, is amended to read:
"7-14-207. Presentation of petition to board of county commissioners -- hearing required. (1)
Provided If the petition
contains the signatures of 20% of the qualified electors of the proposed transportation district or the area proposed to be
added to an existing district, the county clerk shall present the petition and his the county clerk's certificate to the
commissioners at their first meeting held after he the county clerk has attached his the certificate to the petition.
(2) Upon receipt of the petition from the county clerk, the
The commissioners shall thereupon examine the petition and
shall by resolution call for a public hearing on the creation of such the district or the enlargement of the district."
Section 4. Section 7-14-208, MCA, is amended to read:
"7-14-208. Notice of hearing. (1) A notice of the public hearing required by 7-14-207
shall must be published in a
newspaper having general circulation within the proposed transportation district or addition to the district once each week
for at least 2 weeks, the last publication to be at least 2 weeks prior to the hearing. If there is no not a newspaper having
general circulation within the proposed district or addition, the notice of public hearing shall must be posted in at least three
public places within the proposed district for 2 weeks prior to the hearing.
(2) The notice
shall must state the time, date, place, and purpose of the hearing and describe the boundaries of the proposed
district or addition."
Section 5. Section 7-14-209, MCA, is amended to read:
"7-14-209. Hearing on petition. (1) At the time fixed for the public hearing required by 7-14-207, the commissioners
shall hear all testimony offered in support of and in opposition to any petition
and for the creation of the district or addition
to a district.
hearings hearing may be adjourned from time to time for the determination of additional information or hearing
petitioners or objectors, but no adjournment may not exceed 2 weeks after the date originally noticed and published for the
Section 6. Section 7-14-210, MCA, is amended to read:
"7-14-210. Election on question of creating urban transportation district or addition to a district. (1) The commissioners, upon completion of the public hearing required by 7-14-207, shall proceed by resolution to refer the creation of the district or addition to a district to the persons qualified to vote on the proposition.
(2) The commissioners may designate in their resolution whether a special election is to be held in conjunction with a
regular or primary election,
or whether the matter is to be determined at the next general election, or whether the matter is
to be determined by a mail ballot election held pursuant to the provisions of Title 13, chapter 19. If a special election is
ordered, the order must specify the date for the election and the voting places and the commissioners shall appoint and
designate election judges and clerks."
Section 7. Section 7-14-241, MCA, is amended to read:
"7-14-241. Procedure to
enlarge district or be included in district or to remove an addition to a district. (1) The
boundaries of any transportation district may be enlarged if 51% of the qualified electors of the area to be added to the
existing district sign a petition requesting addition to the district. (2)(1) A real property owner may petition to have that owner's property included in a district. (3) Each The addition of the real property owner's property must be approved by a majority vote of the transportation
board. (4)(2) The An area added to a district pursuant to subsection (1) this part may be removed if the area does not directly
receive transportation services from the district and 51% of the qualified voters in the area sign a petition requesting to be
removed from the district. The removal of the area is effective 60 days after submission of the petition to the transportation
board unless within that time, it is determined that the petition contains insufficient signatures for removal of the area. An
insufficient petition must be returned to the petitioners, who may resubmit a corrected version within 90 days. (5)(3) (a) All property within any addition to the a district is subject to all existing indebtedness of the district.
(b) Property within an area removed from
the a district is not subject to the district's existing indebtedness if the area was
added to the district within 5 years of the date on which the petition for removal was submitted to the transportation board."