FIRST REGULAR SESSION

[PERFECTED]

HOUSE COMMITTEE SUBSTITUTE FOR

HOUSE BILL NO. 202

97TH GENERAL ASSEMBLY

0661H.02P                                                                                                                                                 D. ADAM CRUMBLISS, Chief Clerk


 

AN ACT

To amend chapter 262, RSMo, by adding thereto one new section relating to University of Missouri extension districts.




Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the state of Missouri, as follows:


            Section A. Chapter 262, RSMo, is amended by adding thereto one new section, to be known as section 262.598, to read as follows:

            262.598. 1. As used in this section, the following terms shall mean:

            (1) "Consolidated district", a district formed jointly by two or more councils;

            (2) "Council", a University of Missouri extension council authorized under section 262.563;

            (3) "District" or "extension district", a political subdivision formed by one or more councils;

            (4) "Single-council district", a district formed by one council;

            (5) "Governing body", the group of individuals who govern a district.

            2. University of Missouri extension councils are hereby authorized to form extension districts made up of cooperating counties for the purpose of funding extension programming. An extension district may be a single-council district or a consolidated district. A single-council district shall be formed upon a majority vote of the full council. A consolidated district shall be formed upon a majority vote of each participating council.

            3. In a single-council district, the council shall serve as the district's governing body. In addition to any other powers and duties granted to the council under sections 262.550 to 262.620, the council shall also have the powers and duties provided under subsection 5 of this section.

            4. In a consolidated district, the governing body of the district shall consist of at least three, but no more than five, representatives appointed by each participating council. The term of office shall be two years. Representatives may be reappointed. The governing body shall elect officers, who shall serve as officers for two years, and establish a regular meeting schedule which shall not be less than once every three months.

            5. The governing body of a district shall have the following powers and duties:

            (1) Review the activities and annual budgets of each participating council;

            (2) Determine, by September first of each year, the tax rate necessary to generate sufficient revenue to fund the extension programming in the district, which includes annual funding for each participating council for the costs of personnel and the acquisition, supply, and maintenance of each council's property, work, and equipment;

            (3) Oversee the collection of any tax authorized under this section by ensuring the revenue is deposited into a special fund and monitoring the use of the funds to ensure they are used solely for extension programming in the district;

            (4) Approve payments from the special fund in which the tax revenue is deposited; and

            (5) Work cooperatively with each participating council to plan and facilitate the programs, equipment, and activities in the district.

            6. The governing body of a district may submit a question to the voters of the district to institute a property tax levy in the county or counties that compose the district. Questions may be submitted to the voters of the district at any general municipal election. Any such proposed tax shall not exceed thirty cents per one hundred dollars of assessed valuation. The costs of submitting the question to the voters at the general municipal election shall be paid as provided in section 115.063. Such question shall be submitted in substantially the following form:

            "Shall the Extension District in ......... County (insert name of county) be authorized to levy an annual tax of ........ (insert amount not to exceed thirty) cents per one hundred dollars of assessed valuation for the purpose of funding the University of Missouri Extension District programs, equipment, and services in the district?"

 

In a single-council district, if a majority of the voters in the county approve the question, then the district shall impose the tax. If a majority of the voters in a single-council district do not approve the question, then no tax shall be imposed. In a consolidated district, if a majority of voters in each county in the district approve the question, then the district shall impose the tax. If a majority of the voters in a consolidated district do not approve the question, then no tax shall be imposed in any county of the district. In a consolidated district, if a majority of voters in a county do not approve the question, the council in the county that did not approve the question may withdraw from the district. Upon such withdrawal, the district shall be made up of the remaining counties and the tax shall be imposed in those counties. However, if the county that did not approve the question does not withdraw from the district, the tax shall not be imposed. Revenues collected from the imposition of a tax authorized under this section shall be deposited into a special fund dedicated only for use by the local district for programming purposes.

            7. The county commission of any county in which the tax authorized under this section is levied and collected:

            (1) Shall be exempt from the funding requirements under section 262.597 if revenue derived from the tax authorized under this section is in excess of two hundred percent of the average funding received under section 262.597 for the immediately preceding three years; or

            (2) May reduce the current year's funding amount under section 262.597 by thirty-three percent of the amount of tax revenues derived from the tax authorized under this section which exceed the average amount of funding received under section 262.597 for the immediately preceding three years.

            8. Any county that collects tax revenues authorized under this section shall transfer all attributable revenue plus monthly interest for deposit into the district's special fund. The governing body of the district shall comply with the prudent investor standard for investment fiduciaries as provided in section 105.688.

            9. In any county in which a single-council district is established, and for which a tax has not been levied, the district may be dissolved in the same manner in which it was formed.

            10. A county may withdraw from a consolidated district at any time by the filing of a petition with the circuit court having jurisdiction over the district. The petition shall be signed by not fewer than ten percent of those who voted in the most recent presidential election in the county seeking to withdraw and state that further operation of the district is contrary to the best interest of the inhabitants of the county in which the district is located and that the county seeks to withdraw from the district. The circuit court shall hear evidence on the petition. If the court finds that it is in the best interest of the inhabitants of the county in which the district is located for the county to withdraw from the district, the court shall make an order reciting the same and submit the question to the voters. The costs of submitting the question to the voters at the general municipal election shall be paid as provided in section 115.063. The question shall be submitted in substantially the following format:

            "Shall the County of .......... (insert name of county) being part of .......... (insert name of district) Extension District withdraw from the district?"

 

The question shall be submitted at the next general municipal election. The election returns shall be certified to the court. If the court finds that two-thirds of the voters voting on the question voted in favor of withdrawing from the district, the court shall issue an order withdrawing the county from the district, which shall contain a proviso that the district shall remain intact for the sole purposes of paying all outstanding and lawful obligations and disposing of the district's property. No additional costs or obligations for the withdrawing county shall be created except as necessary. The withdrawal shall occur on the first day of the following January after the vote. If the court finds that two-thirds of the voters voting on the question voted against the question to withdraw from the district, the court shall issue an order dismissing the petition and the district shall continue to operate.

            11. The governing body of any district may seek voter approval to increase its current tax rate authorized under this section, provided such increase shall not cause the total tax to exceed thirty cents per one hundred dollars of assessed valuation. To propose such an increase, the governing body shall submit the question to the voters at the general municipal election in the county in which the district is located. The costs of submitting the question to the voters at the general municipal election shall be paid as provided in section 115.063. The question shall be submitted in substantially the following form:

            "Shall the Extension District in ....... (insert name of county or counties) be authorized to increase the tax rate from ...... (insert current amount of tax) cents to ........ (insert proposed amount of tax not to exceed thirty) cents per one hundred dollars of assessed valuation for the purpose of funding the University of Missouri Extension District programs, equipment, and services in the district?"

 

In a single-council district, if a majority of the voters in the county approve the question, then the district shall impose the tax. If a majority of the voters in a single-council district do not approve the question, then the tax shall not be imposed. In a consolidated district, if a majority of voters in the district approve the question, then the district shall impose the new tax rate. If a majority of the voters in a consolidated district do not approve the question, then the tax shall not be imposed in any county of the district. Revenues collected from the imposition of the tax authorized under this section shall be deposited into the special fund dedicated only for use by the district.