The Delta Conservation District (‘District”) is a special purpose district and a body corporate with those powers of a public corporation which are specifically authorized by, and in compliance with, Section 35-70-101 et seq., Colorado Revised Statutes.
Section 2. Purpose.
It is hereby declared that the Bylaws hereinafter set forth will serve a public purpose.
Section 3. Policies of the Board.
It shall be the policy of the Board of Supervisors (“Board”) of the District, consistent with the availability of revenues, personnel and equipment, to use its best efforts to provide administrative and financial services, as authorized under the Colorado Soil Conservation Act.
Section 4. Board of Supervisors.
The number of members on the Board shall be nine (9). Supervisors will serve four-year terms of office and be elected as provided for in Section 35-70-105 and Section 35-70-107 of the Colorado Soil Conservation Act. As a special district, the Board are limited to two consecutive terms of office as set forth in the Colorado Constitution Article XVIII, §11(1) and Amendment 17.
Section 5. Officer Elections.
The officers of the Board shall consist of president, vice president, secretary, and treasurer. Officer elections shall be held at the June board meeting of even numbered years. Officers shall be elected for one two-year term and are not eligible to succeed themselves for an additional consecutive term in that position. If an officer vacancy occurs, the Board will elect a person to fill the remainder of that term. An officer filling a vacancy is eligible to run for the same office of one full two-year term.
Section 6. Power and Duties of Officers.
a. The president shall preside at all meetings of the District landowners and Board. He/she shall be the executive officer of the District and shall sign for the District and Board, any contract, agreements, or other papers necessary to conduct the affairs of the District, when authorized to do so by the Board. He/she will have such other duties and powers as are customary for executive officers, including casting a vote in the event of a tie.
b. In the absence of the president, the vice-president shall have the authority to perform all the duties of the president.
c. The secretary shall be the custodian of the District seal, all papers, documents, and records of the District and Board. He/she shall accurately and completely keep minutes of all meetings of the District landowners and Board. These records shall be available for inspection by any member of the public through the procedures outlined in the Colorado Open Records Act. He/she shall attest the signature of the president to all contracts, agreements, and other papers necessary to conduct the affairs of the District, except for the disbursement of funds.
d. The treasurer shall be the custodian of the funds of the District at all times and is charged with their safekeeping. He/she shall affix his/her signature to all vouchers, warrants, checks or other instruments for the disbursement of District funds. He/she shall keep at all times an accurate and complete record of the financial transactions of the District and of all funds remaining in his/her hands. The treasurer shall be authorized to invest all surplus funds or other available funds of the District in permitted investments authorized by law. The treasurer will serve as chairperson of the Budget Committee. The offices of secretary and treasurer may be combined.
Section 7. Financial Administration
a. Fiscal Year. The fiscal year of the District shall commence on January 1 of each year and end on December 31.
b. Budget Committee. There shall be a permanent Budget Committee composed of the treasurer, a member of the Board appointed by the president and the District manager, which shall be responsible for preparation of the annual budget of the District and such other matters as may be assigned to it by the president or the Board.
Section 8. Meetings of the Board and Quorum.
a. Regular meetings of the Board shall be held once each month at a location chosen annually at the District’s first regular meeting of each calendar year. Notice of time and place designated for all regular meetings shall be posted in at least three public places within the limits of the District, and in addition, one such notice shall be posted in the office of the county clerk and recorder in the county or counties in which the District is located. Such notices shall remain posted and shall be changed in the event that the time or place of such regular meetings is changed. The secretary and/or District manager shall notify each Board member of such meeting in writing, telephone, fax or e-mail, or personal message, not less than three (3) days before the date of such meeting.
b. Special meetings of the Board may be called by any member of the Board by informing the other Board members of the date, time and place of such special meeting, and the purpose for which it is called, and by posting notice in the designated locations at least three days prior to said meeting.
c. The presence of five (5) members of the Board shall constitute a quorum.
d. All official business of the Board shall be conducted at regular or special meetings. Executive sessions may be called at regular or special meetings, and conducted according to the provisions contained in CRS 24-6-402, as follows:
(1) Calling the Executive Session. The topic for discussion in the executive session shall be announced in a motion, and the specified statute that authorized the executive session shall be cited. The matter to be discussed shall be described in as much detail as possible without compromising the purpose of being in executive session. An affirmative vote of two-thirds (2/3) of the quorum present shall be required to go into executive session.
(2) Conducting the Executive Session. Discussions that occur in an executive session shall be electronically recorded. The discussion in executive session shall be limited to the reasons for which the executive session was called. No adoption of any proposed policy, position, resolution, rule, regulation, or format action shall take place in an executive session.
(3) Executive sessions may be called for ONLY the following purposes:
(a) The purchase, acquisition, lease, transfer, or sale of any real, personal, or other property interest; except that no executive session shall be held for the purpose of concealing the fact that a member of the board has a personal interest in such purchase, acquisition, lease, transfer, or sale;
(b) Conferences with an attorney for the board for the purposes of receiving legal advice on specific legal questions.
(c) Matters required to be kept confidential by federal or state law or rules and regulations. The board shall announce the specific citation of the statutes or rules that are the basis for such confidentiality before holding the executive session.
(d) Specialized details of security arrangements or investigations, including defenses against terrorism, both domestic and foreign, and including where disclosure of the matters discussed might reveal information that could be used for the purpose of committing, or avoiding prosecution for, a violation of the law;
(e) Determining positions relative to matters that may be subject to negotiations; developing strategy for negotiations; and instructing negotiators;
(f) Personnel matters except if the employee who is the subject of the session has requested an open meeting, or if the personnel matter involves more than one employee, all of the employees have requested an open meeting.
(3) After Executive Session. The record of any executive session shall be retained by the District for ninety days and then destroyed or erased. Minutes or recordings of the executive session shall not be released to the general public for review under any circumstances, except as required by law.
Section 9. Meetings of the landowners and quorum.
a. Annual meetings of the District landowners shall be held at a convenient place at such time and place as determined by the Board. The secretary shall give notice of such regular or special meetings by a notice published in a newspaper of general circulation within the District not more than thirty (30) days nor less than ten (10) days in advance of the meeting. At all regular meetings, the landowners shall receive the report of the officers of the Board and the Board shall transact such other business as many come before the meeting.
b. Special meetings of District landowners may be called by the Board when deemed necessary, or by a petition signed by at least fifteen (15) District landowners. At any special meeting of the landowners, only matters included in the notice given shall be considered.
c. At any regular or special meeting of the District landowners, a majority of those present in person shall prevail. The presence of at least twenty (20) qualified voters shall be necessary to constitute a quorum. Proxy votes are not permitted
Section 10. Voting by Agent.
At any meeting of District landowners, a corporation owning land within the existing District is entitled to vote, if such corporation duly authorized an agent to vote in the election on its behalf. A landowner who is a qualified voter (elector), as defined Section 32-1-103(a) of the Colorado Revised Statutes, may authorized a family member who is a registered voter and a renter or manager of the land to vote in an election on their behalf.
Section 11. Qualification of Voters.
Any person having an interest may be heard at a special or regular meeting of District landowners, but only qualified voters, as defined by Section 35-70-104 of the Colorado Soil Conservation Act, or their authorized agent, shall be permitted to vote. (4) (a) (I) A “qualified voter” or “qualified elector”, as referred to in this article, means any registered voter or corporation owning land within the proposed or existing district, as shown by the records in the office of the appropriate county clerk and recorder, and any heir or devisee of such land of a deceased landowner.
Section 12. Rules and Order of Business.
At all meetings within the District shall be governed by Robert’s Rules of Order and the Board shall establish the order of business.
Section 13. Taxation.
Taxes or assessments within the District shall be levied in accordance with Section 35-70-109 of the Colorado Soil Conservation Act.
Section 14. Vacancies.
Vacancies on the Board shall be filled as provided in Section 35-70-107 of the Colorado Soil Conservation Act. If a vacancy occurs on the board of supervisors, the remaining supervisors shall appoint a successor for the remainder of the term of the seat vacated. In the event any supervisor ceases to be a qualified voter of and landowner in the district or the corporation which he represents ceases to be an owner of lands within the district, the supervisors shall thereupon declare a vacancy and proceed to appoint a successor including the offices of president, vice president, secretary and treasurer. An officer appointment and completion of such vacancy shall not be classified as a full officer term subject to the officer term limit.
Section 15. Removal of Supervisors and Officers.
Any member of the Board may be removed from office by the recall procedure outline in Section 32-1-906 and Section 32-1-907 of the Colorado Revised Statutes. Any officer of the Board may be removed from such office at any time by a majority of all Board members. Any Board member may be removed from any committee or other appointment by majority vote of the Board. If a member of the Board fails to attend three consecutive regular meetings of the Board without the Board having entered upon its minutes an approval for an absence or additional absences, he/she shall be removed from the Board; except that such additional absences or absences for temporary mental or physical disability or illness may be excused.
Section 16. Employment of Assistance.
If in the opinion of the Board it shall be necessary or in the best interest of the District to employ a qualified person as district manager, it shall have the power to do so. The employee(s) of the District shall not be a member of the Board or a member of a Board member’s immediate family. The Board shall also have the power to employ such legal, technical, or other assistance as may be necessary to conduct the affairs of the District, but in no event shall the employment of any assistance authorized in this Section obligate the District beyond the amount of its available funds or reasonable revenue expectancy.
Section 17. Indemnification of Board Members.
The District shall defend, hold harmless and indemnify any Board member, whether elective or appointive, against any tort or liability, claim or demand, without limitation, arising out of any alleged act or omission occurring the performance of official duty, as more fully define by law. The provisions of the Section shall be supplemental and subject to and, to the extent of any inconsistency therewith, shall be modified by the provision of the Colorado Governmental Immunity Act, 24-10-101, et seq., Colorado Revised Statutes.
Section 18. Disclosure of Conflict of Interest.
A potential conflict of interest of any Board member shall be disclosed in accordance with State law, particularly Article 18 of Title 24, Colorado Revised Statutes and Sections 32-1-902(3) and 18-8-308, Colorado Revised Statutes.
Section 19. Appeals.
If the owner of lands within the District desires, he/she may appeal any decision of the Board to the Colorado State Conservation Board. Procedures for an appeal are outlined in Section 35-70-110 of the Colorado Soil Conservation Act.
Section 20. Amendment of Bylaws.
The bylaws may be altered, amended, or repealed or additions made in accordance to the procedure outlined in Section 35-70-109 of the Colorado Soil Conservation Act. ADOPTED this 9th day of April, 2011, by the Board of Supervisors of the Delta Conservation District. Colorado Statutes referred to in the By-Laws.
(1) Within sixty days after it receives a petition, the state board shall cause notice by publication to be made of the pendency of the petition. Such notice shall state:
(a) That a petition has been filed for the organization of a conservation district and the name of the proposed district;
(b) The date (not less than twenty days from the date of such notice), hour, and place that a hearing will be had to determine the sufficiency of the petition and the necessity and advisability of the formation of the proposed district;
(c) That said petition, map, or plat of the proposed district and related material are on file and may be seen and examined by any interested person at the office of the county clerk and recorder of each county in which the proposed district is located and the office of the state board or other designated place within the period between the date of the notice and the date of the hearing;
(d) That anytime after the filing of the petition for the organization of a conservation district, but no later than five days before the day fixed for the hearing thereon, the owner of any real property within the proposed district may file a petition with the state board stating reasons why said property should not be included therein and requesting that said real property be excluded therefrom. Such petition shall be duly verified and shall describe the property sought to be excluded. The state board shall hear said petition and all objections thereto at the time of the hearing on the petition for organization and shall determine whether, in the best public interest, said property should be excluded or included in the proposed district.
(2) If on hearing, in the opinion of the state board, the petition or map or plat is insufficient, the papers shall be returned to the petitioners for amendment. If, in the opinion of the state board, the organization of the district is not required for the preservation of the health, prosperity, and welfare of the state of Colorado and its people, it shall so advise the petitioners, and the district shall not be organized, but subsequent petitions covering the same or substantially the same territory may be filed after six months have expired from the date of denial of any such petition, and new hearings shall be held and determinations made thereon.
(3) If it appears upon hearing that it may be desirable to include within the proposed district territory outside of the area within which due notice has been given or to exclude territory within the district as proposed by the petition, the state board shall determine and define by metes and bounds or by legal subdivisions the boundaries of the proposed district, making such inclusions and exclusions as may be determined desirable. The proposal to include territory within which due notice has not been given shall be considered only at an adjourned hearing to be held after due notice thereof has been given throughout the entire area considered for inclusion in the district and such adjourned hearing held.
(4) If, following the hearing, it is the opinion of the state board that the petition and accompanying map or plat are sufficient and it appears that the organization of the proposed district is feasible and practicable and is required for the preservation of the health, prosperity, and welfare of the state of Colorado and its people, the state board shall make and record such determination.
(5) (a) If it is determined that the petition and the map or plat are sufficient and the proposed district is necessary, the state board shall call an election. The state board shall select the date, time, and place for the holding of the election, such date to be not less than twenty days nor more than forty days from the time the state board’s determination becomes final.
(b) The state board shall give notice by publication of the date, time, and place of such election, together with a statement of the matters which will be considered at the election. This notice shall also describe the outer boundaries of the proposed district and any exclusions of land within such boundaries, state that the qualifications of voters shall be as described in section 35-70-104 (3), state that the petition is on file at the office of the county clerk and recorder, and state the procedures for nominating supervisors and the place where absent voters’ ballots can be obtained. Such publication shall be made not less than ten days nor more than thirty days before the date of such election.
(c) At such election the qualified voter shall vote for or against the organization of the conservation district.
(d) (I) If the canvass of votes at any organization election discloses that one-half or more of the votes cast are against organization of the district, the result of the election shall be recorded in the minutes of the state board, and the proposal shall be dismissed. If the canvass discloses that more than one-half of the votes cast are for the organization of the district, the result shall be recorded in the minutes of the state board, and the board shall proceed as provided in section 35-70-106
(II) The candidates, according to the number of supervisors to be elected, receiving the most votes cast shall be elected. The supervisors elected shall take office upon the taking of an oath and, if required by the state or local board, the filing of a bond in the same manner as specified in section 32-1-901, C.R.S. Failure to take the oath or furnish a bond, if required, except for good cause shown, shall create a vacancy in the office, and the vacancy shall be filled by the next candidate receiving the highest number of votes in the case of a new district or by the remaining supervisors as specified in section 35-70-107 (4).
(6) For the purposes of this section, “publication” means printing, once a week for two consecutive weeks, by two publications in one newspaper of general circulation in the proposed conservation district if there is such a newspaper, and, if not, then in a newspaper in the county in which the proposed conservation district is located. It is not necessary that publication be made on the same day of each week.
(7) (a) Except as may be otherwise provided in this article, the state board and each local district board of supervisors in the conduct of all elections shall follow, as much as practicable, the election procedures set forth in part 8 of article 1 of title 32, C.R.S.
(b) Whenever reference is made to the secretary or board of a special district, it shall be deemed to mean the secretary or board of supervisors of the local district or state board, as applicable. 35-70-107. Board of supervisors – election – term.
(1) (a) (I) The governing body of the district shall consist of a board of supervisors, referred to in this article as “supervisors”, who shall be elected by the qualified electors of the district at an election conducted as provided in section 35-70-105. Each board shall consist of not less than five and not more than eleven supervisors, which number shall be specified in the bylaws of the district.
(II) At least sixty-six percent of the supervisors of each district shall be agricultural producers who are landowners in the district; except that, if the district cannot find the requisite percentage of agricultural producers, the district may petition the state board for an exemption from the percentage requirement.
(III) Each supervisor shall serve for a term of four years; except that each district’s board shall provide for the staggering of supervisorial terms so that the terms of no more than a simple majority of supervisors expire at any one time. Supervisors serving on July 1, 1995, shall continue to serve the terms for which they were elected or appointed.
(b) Subject to the provisions of paragraph (a) of this subsection (1), no one shall be eligible to become a candidate for election as a member of the board of supervisors of any such district unless such person is a landowner in and a qualified elector of the district, including a renter or manager of the landowner’s land pursuant to section 35-70-104 (4), or the duly authorized representative of a corporation owning lands within the district.
(a) The proposed change of location of a meeting of the board appears on the agenda of a regular or special meeting of the board; and
(b) A resolution is adopted by the board stating the reason for which a meeting of the board is to be held in a location other than under the provisions of this subsection (2) and further stating the date, time, and place of such meeting.
(3) Members of the board of supervisors shall be entitled to travel and other expenses necessarily incurred in the discharge of their duties, such reimbursement to be payable only from the income of the district. No supervisor shall be personally liable for the consequences of his official acts; nor shall he receive, by virtue of his office, any benefits from the conduct of the affairs of the district other than the benefits any landowner may be entitled to receive from the operation of the district.
(4) If a vacancy occurs on the board of supervisors, the remaining supervisors shall appoint a successor for the remainder of the term of the seat vacated. In the event any supervisor ceases to be a qualified voter of and landowner in the district or the corporation which he represents ceases to be an owner of lands within the district, the supervisors shall thereupon declare a vacancy and proceed to appoint a successor. 35-70-109. Assessments – amendments to bylaws.
(a) The supervisors shall prepare a budget and distribute the amount thereof over the lands within the district in accordance with the valuation for assessment, but in no event shall the assessment on real property be in excess of one-half of one mill. Such tax levy or assessment shall be for the general purposes of the district and not for special purposes as provided for in paragraph (d) of this subsection (2).
(b) Prior to setting a date for an election as provided in paragraph (c) of this subsection (2), the supervisors shall hold a public hearing concerning the imposition of a tax levy or assessment. Thereafter, if the board of supervisors decides to proceed with an election, it shall give notice by publication, as provided in section 35-70-105 (6), setting forth the date of the election, the rate or amount of such levy or assessment, a statement as to why such levy or assessment is necessary, and other information concerning the holding of the election.
(c) No tax levy or assessment shall be imposed within a district unless it is first submitted to the qualified electors of the district and approved by a majority of the votes cast. Any such election shall be conducted as provided in section 35-70-105 (7). Any increase in the tax levy or assessment, if the existing levy or assessment does not equal the one-half mill maximum, shall also be proposed and approved at an election in the same manner as provided in this paragraph (c). An existing tax levy or assessment may be continued from year to year or decreased as determined by the board of supervisors and approved by the state board.
(d) If, in the judgment of the qualified voters of a portion of a district or in the judgment of the supervisors, a tax levy or assessment is required for special purposes on real property in said portion of a district for the installation, maintenance, and operation of flood prevention and watershed improvement measures and practices, an assessment or tax levy, in addition to any levy assessed pursuant to paragraph (a) of this subsection (2), for such portion of the district may be levied on real property as provided for in this subsection (2), but only the qualified voters owning lands within the aforesaid delineated parts of the district may vote upon the question as to whether or not such levy or assessment shall be imposed. Such tax levy or assessment for special purposes shall be administered in the same manner as set forth in paragraph (a) of this subsection (2) and, when combined with any other levy of the district pursuant to this article, shall be subject to the same one-half mill levy limit set forth in said paragraph (a).
(3) The bylaws of any conservation district may be altered, amended, or repealed or have additions made thereto at any regular or regularly called special meeting of the district, upon compliance with the following requirements: A petition whose text sets forth the proposed amendment in full, signed by not less than three percent or fifty of the qualified voters of the district, whichever is less, must be filed with the supervisors; the complete text of the proposed amendment must be published in the notice of the meeting at which it is to be considered, which notice must be published at least once in a newspaper of general circulation within each county in which property included within the district is located, not less than ten days prior to the said meeting; and those present at the said meeting at which the proposed amendment is to be considered shall constitute a quorum for the consideration of the proposed amendment, and the affirmative vote of a two-thirds majority thereof shall be required to adopt the proposed amendment. 35-70-110. Appeals to state board.
(1) If the owner of any lands within the district desires, he may appeal from any decision of the supervisors to the state board. To establish such an appeal, he must submit his appeal in writing to the state board within thirty days after the date of the action of the supervisors from which the appeal was taken. The notice of appeal shall state the particular part of the decision of the supervisors from which an appeal is being taken, if less than the entire decision is being appealed from, and shall state in simple and concise language the reasons why the owner considers the decision to be improper. 32-1-906. Directors subject to recall.
(1) Any director elected to the board of any special district who has actually held office for at least six months may be recalled from office by the eligible electors of the special district. A petition signed by the lesser of three hundred eligible electors or forty percent of the eligible electors demanding the recall of any director named in the petition shall be filed in the court. Any recall shall be governed by the provisions of part 1 of article 12 of title 1, C.R.S. (1) 32-1-907. Recall election – resignation.
(1) If a director subject to a recall petition offers a resignation, it shall be accepted, and the vacancy caused by the resignation, or from any other cause, shall be filled as provided by section 32-1-905 (2). If the director does not resign within five days after the sufficiency of the recall petition has been sustained, the board shall order that a recall election be held pursuant to the provisions of part 1 of article 12 of title 1, C.R.S.