17-52a-406.  County attorney review of proposed optional plan — Conflict with statutory or constitutional provisions — Processing of optional plan after attorney review.

(1)  As used in this section:

Terms Used In Utah Code 17-52a-406

  • County: means a unit of local government that is a body corporate and politic and a legal subdivision of the state, with geographic boundaries as described in Section 17-50-104, and powers as provided in Part 3, County Powers. See Utah Code 17-50-101
  • County legislative body: means :Utah Code 68-3-12.5
  • Executive: when used to describe the powers, duties, or functions of a person or body elected as the county executive or a person appointed as the county manager or administrative officer, refers to:
(a) the power and duty to carry laws and ordinances into effect and secure their due observance; and
(b) those powers, duties, and functions that, under constitutional and statutory provisions and through long usage and accepted practice and custom at the federal and state level, have come to be regarded as belonging to the executive branch of government. See Utah Code 17-50-101
  • Legislative: when used to describe the powers, duties, or functions of a county commission or council, refers to:
    (a) the power and duty to enact ordinances, levy taxes, and establish budgets; and
    (b) those powers, duties, and functions that, under constitutional and statutory provisions and through long usage and accepted practice and custom at the federal and state level, have come to be regarded as belonging to the legislative branch of government. See Utah Code 17-50-101
  • Optional plan: means a plan establishing an alternate form of government for a county as provided in Section 17-52a-404. See Utah Code 17-52a-102
  • Person: means :Utah Code 68-3-12.5
  • Study committee: means the committee that has five members appointed and charged with the duties as provided in Section 17-52a-403. See Utah Code 17-52a-102
  • (a)  “Proposed optional plan” means an optional plan that is submitted to the county attorney for review in accordance with a provision of this chapter.

    (b)  “Requesting entity” means the person who submits a proposed optional plan to the county attorney for review in accordance with a provision of this chapter.
  • (2) 

    (a)  Within 45 days after the day on which the county attorney receives a proposed optional plan from a requesting entity, the county attorney shall review the proposed optional plan and send a written report containing the information described in Subsection (2)(b) to:

    (i)  the requesting entity; and

    (ii) 

    (A)  the petition sponsors, if the proposed optional plan was recommended under Section 17-52a-303; or

    (B)  the study committee, if the proposed optional plan was recommended under Section 17-52a-403.

    (b)  A report from the county attorney under Subsection (2)(a) shall:

    (i)  state the county attorney’s opinion as to whether implementation of the proposed optional plan would result in a violation of any applicable statutory or constitutional provision;

    (ii)  if the county attorney concludes that a violation would result:

    (A)  identify specifically each statutory or constitutional provision that implementation of the proposed optional plan would violate;

    (B)  identify specifically each provision or feature of the proposed optional plan that would result in a statutory or constitutional violation if the proposed optional plan is implemented; and

    (C)  recommend how the proposed optional plan may be modified to avoid the statutory or constitutional violation.

    (3) 

    (a)  The proposed optional plan may not be the subject of an election under Section 17-52a-501 if:

    (i)  the county attorney has not reviewed and submitted a written report in accordance with this section; or

    (ii)  the county attorney concludes that implementation of the proposed optional plan would result in a violation of an applicable statutory or constitutional provision.

    (b)  The study committee may:

    (i)  modify a proposed optional plan that the study committee recommends in accordance with Section 17-52a-403 to avoid a violation that a county attorney’s report describes under Subsection (2); and

    (ii)  file a new report under Subsection 17-52a-403(3)(a)(iv).

    (c)  A county legislative body may:

    (i)  modify a proposed optional plan that the county legislative body proposes in accordance with Section 17-52a-302 or 17-52a-403 to avoid a violation that a county attorney’s report describes under Subsection (2); and

    (ii)  within 10 days of modifying the proposed optional plan, send the modified proposed optional plan to:

    (A)  the county clerk, if the proposed optional plan was proposed in accordance with Section 17-52a-302; and

    (B)  the county attorney for review in accordance with this section.

    (d) 

    (i)  The petition sponsors may:

    (A)  modify a proposed optional plan that the petition proposes in accordance with Subsection 17-52a-303(1)(a)(ii) to avoid a violation that a county attorney’s report describes under Subsection (2); and

    (B)  submit the modified proposed optional plan to the county clerk.

    (ii)  Upon receipt of a modified proposed optional plan described in Subsection (3)(d)(i), the county clerk shall send the modified proposed optional plan to the county attorney for review in accordance with this section.

    (4)  The county executive, county legislative body, county attorney, and county clerk shall treat the following as an original:

    (a)  a new report that a study committee files under Subsection 17-52a-403(3)(a)(iv);

    (b)  a modified proposed optional plan that a county legislative body sends under Subsection (3)(c); and

    (c)  a modified proposed optional plan that petition sponsors submit to the county clerk and that the county clerk sends under Subsection (3)(d).

    (5)  If the county attorney’s written report under Subsection (2)(b) does not identify any provisions or features of the proposed optional plan that, if implemented, would violate a statutory or constitutional provision, the proposed optional plan is subject to the provisions described in Section 17-52a-501.

    Amended by Chapter 47, 2020 General Session