SB 77 - This act proposes to amend the current law regarding transportation development districts by: (1) providing a method to amend the boundaries of a transportation development district after formation, (2) enabling districts to incur indebtedness and pledge district revenues to the repayment of the indebtedness, (3) shortening the period of time required to complete a mail-in election and (4) making "clean-up" revisions throughout the current statutes.
This act adds a provision that all transportation development districts formed after August 28, 2005, may not overlap with another transportation development district using the same funding mechanism. This act also adds "bicycle/pedestrian facilities" to the list of acceptable projects for which a transportation development district may be formed (Section 238.202).
This act inserts a provision that a district may be created to fund, promote, plan, design, construct, or improve a project and then only to subsequently to maintain and operate it (Section 238.205).
This act allows the court to consider that all fo the property in the district will receive a direct transportation-related improvement from the project, not just a general benefit before the court approves it. The act adds a provision that mandates the city and county in which the proposed district will sit will be respondents to the petition filed. The act updates the requirements of the petition process so that a petitioner must recite that either the commission or the local transportation authority has approved the project at the time the petition is filed (Section 238.207).
This act requires the circuit clerk to publish notice of the hearing on the petition at the petitioner's expense. The notice of the hearing shall be published in a newspaper of general circulation in the county at least two weeks before the hearing on the petition. The act allows voters to vote in a single election on both formation and taxation, but only if using a sales tax mechanism, but only if the petition was filed by a governing body. The act removes the ability of the court to forego a hearing if any parties or property owners object to the court proceeding without a hearing (Section 238.210).
The act also shortens the time, from 14 weeks to 8 weeks, within which a mail-in election within a district can be accomplished (Section 238.216). The act decreases the amount of time that a failed transportation development district measure may be resubmitted to the voters from two years to one year (Section 238.215.4). Under this act, if a transportation development district is approved, the petitioners may be reimbursed for costs relating to preliminary engineering design, surveys, traffic studies, legal, and planning (Section 238.217).
The act removes the term "funding" and replaces the term with "imposition of the tax or fee". The act inserts a provision that the proposed project must be, in the opinion of the commission, not intended to be merged into the state highways and transportation system, for the commission to decline or consider the project. The act adds a requirement that the local transportation authority must find that the project is consistent with its transportation plan and by ordinance or resolution has approved it in order for a local-transportation authority project to be approved by the court. The act adds a requirement that if the commission declines to consider the project that it shall notify the local transportation authority of its determination (Section 238.225).
The act provides that a district may use the taxes or other funding methods to fund its operating expenses, including all necessary and incidental expenses related to the issuance of revenue bonds (Section 238.227).
The act adds a requirement that the local transportation authority or the commission, as applicable, has by ordinance or resolution approved of the imposition or increase or increase of the tax (Section 238.235).
The act provides that the sales tax imposed by a district may imposed in increments of 1/8 of one percent, up to a maximum of one percent (Section 238.236).
This act also permits a district to incur indebtedness and pledge the revenues generated from the property or retail sales tax imposed by the district to the repayment of the indebtedness, provided the requirements of Article VI Section 26 of the Missouri Constitution have been met (Section 238.242.7).
This act authorizes transportation development districts to enter into design-build project contracts (Section 238.252).
The act adds a requirement that if the transportation development district desires to add or delete a project that it obtain the consent of the local transportation authority, or commission, as applicable (Section 238.257).
The current law currently does not address the issue of whether a district may amend its boundaries after it has been formed. This act provides that, if a resolution is passed by the board of directors of a district, a petition may be filed with the circuit court of the county that entered the judgment creating the district to amend the boundaries. The petition may be filed by the board of directors of the district or, if no persons eligible to be registered voters reside within the proposed amended boundaries of the district, the owners of record of all of the real property within the proposed district boundaries. The contents of the petition and the procedure for amending the district boundaries is similar to the procedure used to form a district. The petition shall set forth the description of the proposed boundaries of the amended district and whether the current funding mechanism should be extended to the newly amended area within the district (Section 238.258).
The act adds a requirement that when the state auditor does an audit of a transportation development district that a copy of the audit must be sent to the commission or the local transportation authority, as applicable (Section 238.272 and Section 238.275).
The act also makes a variety of minor revisions in an effort to eliminate ambiguities, inconsistencies and omissions throughout the transportation development district statutes (Sections 238.207 to Sections 238.258).