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H.B. 366

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SOIL CONSERVATION DISTRICTS

2    
1997 GENERAL SESSION

3    
STATE OF UTAH

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Sponsor: Melvin R. Brown

5    AN ACT RELATING TO SPECIAL DISTRICTS; MODIFYING PROVISIONS RELATING TO
6    THE QUALIFICATIONS AND ELECTION OF SUPERVISORS OF SOIL CONSERVATION
7    DISTRICTS; AUTHORIZING SUPERVISORS TO DIVIDE DISTRICT INTO VOTING
8    AREAS; MODIFYING QUALIFICATIONS OF VOTERS IN ELECTION OF
9    SUPERVISORS; REQUIRING THE DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE TO PAY
10    ELECTION EXPENSES; AND MAKING TECHNICAL CORRECTIONS.
11    This act affects sections of Utah Code Annotated 1953 as follows:
12    AMENDS:
13         17A-3-804, as renumbered and amended by Chapter 186, Laws of Utah 1990
14    Be it enacted by the Legislature of the state of Utah:
15        Section 1. Section 17A-3-804 is amended to read:
16         17A-3-804. Governing body of districts -- Candidates' qualifications -- Procedures
17     -- Termination of office upon consolidation, division, or termination -- New elections.
18        (1) (a) The governing body of each district shall be comprised of five supervisors elected
19    at large within the district.
20        (b) At least three of the supervisors shall be private agricultural land operators.
21        (c) The term of office for each supervisor shall be four years.
22        (d) If the supervisors divide the district into watershed voting areas under Subsection (5),
23    at least one supervisor must reside within each voting area.
24        (e) A vacancy that occurs in the office of a supervisor shall be filled by appointment by
25    the remaining supervisors for the unexpired term of the supervisor creating the vacancy.
26        (2) (a) The supervisors shall elect a chairman and other officers they consider necessary
27    from among their number.


1        (b) A simple majority of supervisors present at a duly called meeting shall constitute a
2    quorum for the transaction of official business. [Any vacancy which occurs in the office of a
3    supervisor shall be filled by the remaining supervisors for the unexpired term of the vacated
4    supervisor.]
5        (c) Supervisors shall receive in the performance of their official duties compensation for
6    [mileage] travel and time as fixed by the commission and actual and necessary expenses.
7        [(2) Supervisors shall be elected to four year terms of office; provided, that at the initial
8    election of supervisors under this part two of the supervisors elected shall be elected to only two
9    year terms of office. The two candidates at such initial election who receive the fourth and fifth
10    largest number of votes are deemed elected to the two year terms of office.]
11        (3) Each candidate who stands for election to the office of district supervisor shall be
12    nominated by a nominating committee composed of [the following persons]:
13        (a) the [chairman] chair of the county commission or council;
14        (b) the [chairman] chair of the county [agricultural stabilization and conservation service]
15    USDA Farm Service Agency Committee;
16        (c) the [chairman] chair of the district supervisors or designated district supervisor if the
17    chair is an incumbent who wishes to run for reelection; and
18        (d) the county agricultural extension [agent] service designated representative.
19        (4) (a) The nominating committee shall nominate for each district election a slate of
20    candidates equal in number to at least one more than the number of supervisors to be elected.
21        (b) The commission shall, before each election, deliver to the nominating committee a
22    copy of the district's supervisor election voting list for the committee's review and approval.
23        (5) The district supervisors may divide the district into no more than three watershed
24    voting areas.
25        [(5)] (6) (a) Candidates, other than those nominated by the nominating committee, shall
26    be placed on the ballot upon the receipt of a petition, not later than [January 1 of the year in which
27    the district supervisor election is to be conducted, which states] the close of nominations as set by
28    the commission.
29        (b) Each petition under Subsection (6)(a) shall:
30        (i) state:
31        (A) the candidate's name;

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1        (B) that the candidate is over 18 years of age; and
2        (C) that the candidate is a resident of the district in which the election is to be held[. Each
3    petition shall]; and
4        (ii) list the name, address, voting [district] precinct number, and signature of at least six
5    persons who are registered voters within the same district as the candidate.
6        [(6)] (7) (a) The names of all nominees, whether nominated by the nominating committee
7    or [upon] by petition, shall be received by the commission on or before [January 1 of each year in
8    which any district supervisor election is to be conducted] the date set by the commission as the
9    close of nominations.
10        (b) The commission shall:
11        (i) fix the date of election in each district which[, in no event, shall] may not be held later
12    than six weeks after the date nominations close; and [shall,]
13        (ii) at least three weeks before the date scheduled for each election, publish notice of the
14    election in a newspaper or other [publication] media outlet method with general circulation within
15    each district where an election is to be held.
16        (c) The notice under Subsection (7)(b) shall:
17        (i) state the date of the election, the names of all candidates, and the fact that [ballots]
18    ballot request forms may be obtained for the election by any [land occupier] registered voter from
19    the commission offices or from such other place as the commission designates[. The notice shall];
20    and
21        (ii) specify the address of the commission offices or [such] other [place] places where
22    [ballots] ballot request forms may be obtained.
23        [(7)] (8) The names of all nominees shall be printed on the ballot in alphabetical order
24    according to surname, and a square shall appear before each name. A printed instruction to insert
25    [an "X"] a mark in the square before the name of [any two or three names (depending upon] the
26    number of persons to be elected[)] to show the voter's preference shall also appear on the ballot.
27        [(8)] (9) (a) The commission and department shall conduct the election of district
28    supervisors by mail. [Each]
29        (b) A person is eligible to vote if the person:
30        (i) is a registered voter residing in the district;
31        (ii) is a person who:

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1        (A) owns or operates private agricultural land in the district; and
2        (B) (I) requests a ballot; or
3        (II) has voted in one of the last two district elections.
4        (c) (i) The commission and department shall establish and maintain a supervisor's election
5    mailing list for each district election.
6        (ii) The list under Subsection (9)(c)(i) shall contain the names and mailing addresses of
7    all persons eligible to vote under Subsection (9)(b).
8        (d) The commission shall mail a ballot to each person within a district where an election
9    is to be held who is listed on the [county agricultural stabilization and conservation service]
10    supervisor's election mailing list [and each other land occupier within the district who requests a
11    ballot shall receive a ballot from the commission].
12        (e) (i) Ballots shall be mailed not later than five days before the date set for election [and
13    each].
14        (ii) Each ballot shall specify the date after which ballots will not be accepted for purposes
15    of the election.
16        (f) The [two or three] candidates equal in number to the number of supervisor positions
17    available and receiving the highest number of votes[, respectively (depending upon the number
18    of candidates to be elected),] are [deemed] elected and shall take office on [March 15, following]
19    the date [of election] set by the commission for terms to begin.
20        (g) The commission shall determine all questions of eligibility, certify the count and tally
21    [all] of ballots and votes cast, and declare and certify each district supervisor elected.
22        (h) All expenses incident to the election shall be paid by the department for the
23    commission.
24        [(9)] (10) (a) If a district is consolidated, or if a district is divided or terminated, the offices
25    of supervisors within [the] each affected district [or districts] shall terminate immediately, and the
26    commission shall proceed to wind up the affairs of a terminated district[; or, in the case of
27    consolidation, to].
28        (b) If districts are consolidated, the commission shall merge the assets and liabilities of
29    the original districts into the newly created district[; or, in the case of division, to].
30        (c) If a district is divided, the commission shall equitably divide the assets of the original
31    district between the newly created districts. [New elections]

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1        (d) (i) A new election for supervisors shall be conducted in any divided or consolidated
2    district.
3        (ii) In an election under Subsection (10)(d)(i), the commission shall:
4        (A) set the dates for nominations, election, and commencement of terms of office; and
5        (B) certify the results of the election.
6        (iii) The nominating committee shall select a slate of at least six candidates for an election
7    under Subsection (10)(d)(i). Nominations may also be made as provided under Subsection (6).
8        (iv) Notwithstanding Subsection (1)(c), the two candidates receiving the highest number
9    of votes at an election under Subsection (10)(d)(i) shall be elected to a four-year term, and the
10    three candidates receiving the next highest number of votes shall be elected to a two-year term.




Legislative Review Note
    as of 2-20-97 7:07 AM


A limited legal review of this bill raises no obvious constitutional or statutory concerns.

Office of Legislative Research and General Counsel


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