CHAPTER 7. COUNTY COMMISSIONS AND OFFICERS.

§7-25-7a. Voluntary dissolution resort area district.

(a) The owners of twenty-five percent or more of the real property in a resort area district may petition the board to dissolve that resort area district.

(b) Within sixty days of the submission of a petition for the dissolution of a resort area district, the board shall verify the total number of eligible petitioners to determine whether the required percentage of petitioners has been obtained. If the board determines that the petition has met the requirements of subsection (a) of this section, the board shall set a date for a special election on the question of continuing or dissolving the resort area district. The board shall, using reasonable efforts, cause a notice to be mailed by certified mail, return receipt requested, to each owner of real property located within the resort area district's of a special election to determine continuance or dissolution of the resort area district: Provided, That any notice shall be mailed to the property owner's primary place of abode by certified mail, return receipt requested.

The date set by the board for the special election required by this section may be no less than sixty nor more than ninety days from the date the board mails the notice, in the form described in subsection (c) of this section, to the owners of real property located within the district. The board shall make a copy of the petition available for inspection by interested persons before the special election. If the board determines that the petition has not met the requirements of subsection (a) of this section, the petition shall be returned to the petitioners with a statement of the reason why the petition was rejected.

(c) The notice mailed to real property owners regarding the special election to determine the continuance or dissolution of the resort area district shall contain the following:

(1) The purpose, location, date and time for the special election;

(2) A proxy, in the form described in subsection (d) of this section, which may be used by owners of any class of property to grant proxies to any person to cast the owner's ballot at the special election as if the owner were present in person. The proxy may be mailed or transmitted electronically to the individual being granted the proxy; and

(3) A copy of a ballot described in subsection (e) of this section. The ballot may be used to vote for continuance or dissolution of the resort area district at the special election.

(d) The proxy form required to be included with the notice of special election mailed to real property owners, as provided in subsection (c) of this section, shall contain the following information:

(1) That the proxy is for the special election to consider the continuance or dissolution of the resort area district as covered by the notice required by subsection (b) of this section;

(2) The name of the owner having the voting right for a parcel of real property;

(3) The location of the real property;

(4) The name of the individual being given the proxy to vote for the owner unable to attend the special election;

(5) The date and signature of real property owner authorizing the proxy; and

(6) A statement that the named individual being extended the voting proxy is restricted to placing a vote for the named owner as indicated by the owner's check mark in one of the following two voting choices:

/ / For Continuance of the ____________ (name of district) resort area district.

/ / For Dissolution of the _____________ (name of district) resort area district.

(e) At the special election, the board shall submit the question of continuing or dissolving the resort area district to owners of qualified real property within the resort area district. For purposes of this section, the term "qualified real property" includes the following classes of real property: Unimproved/developable; commercial business; resort operator; and residential improved. Each owner of qualified real property is entitled to one undivided vote in the special election for each parcel of qualified real property owned. The special election ballots shall have written or printed on them the following:

/ / For Continuance of the _____________ (name of district) resort area district

/ / For Dissolution of the _______________ (name of district) resort area district

If a simple majority of the votes is cast for dissolution, then the board shall request that the governing body dissolve the resort area district. Following the receipt of a request, the resort area district shall be dissolved by the governing body by operation of law. However, all debts or other obligations outstanding against the resort area district must be settled in full prior to the dissolution. If a simple majority of the votes is cast for continuance, the resort area district shall continue in existence until dissolved at some later date under this section. However, another election may not be held within two years of the last election.

(f) An election under this section shall be held, and conducted and the result determined, certified, returned and canvassed in the same manner and by the same persons as an election for resort area district board members pursuant to section eleven of this article.