SEVENTEENTH DAY.

FRIDAY, Sept. 24, 1875.

Convention met pursuant to adjournment.

Prayer by Rev. Dr. Andrews, of this city.

On motion of Mr. Sykes, the reading of the journal was dispensed with.

Mr. Burrell Johnston appeared in the Hall, was qualified and took his seat as delegate from Hale County.

The Convention proceeded to the consideration of the rule proposed by Mr. Powell, of Tuscaloosa, in relation to debate.

Mr. Samford moved to strike out “ten” and insert “five.”


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Mr. Rice moved to lay the resolution and amendment on the table; which was lost.

Mr. Rice moved to postpone the further consideration of the resolution and amendment until 12 o’clock to-morrow; which was lost.

The amendment was then adopted.

Mr. Powell of Bullock, offered the following substitute: No member shall speak more than once on the same subject, until all who desire to do so shall have spoken, and no member shall speak twice on the same subject unless by leave of the Convention, except chairmen of committees, who shall be entitled to close the debate upon their several reports.

Mr. Oates moved to strike out of the substitute the words “until all who desire to do so shall have spoken.”

Mr. Brown moved to lay the substitute and amendment on the table; which was carried and the resolution, as amended, was adopted.

The Convention proceeded to the consideration of the report of the committee on finance and taxation.

Section 3 was read as follows:

The State shall never engage in works of internal improvements, nor lend its credit in aid of such; nor shall the State be interested in, or lend money or its credit in aid of, any individual, association or corporation, for any purposes whatsoever.

Mr. Sykes offered the following amendment, which was adopted:

Amend in the first line by inserting, between the words “lend” and “its,” the words “money or;” and further amend by striking out all of said section after the words “interested in,” and inserting therefore “any private or corporate enterprise, or lend money or credit to any individual, association or incorporation.”

The section, thus amended, was adopted.

Section 5 was read as follows:

After the adoption of this Constitution, no debt shall be created against, or incurred by, this State or its authority, except to repel invasion or suppress insurrection, and then only by a concurrence of two-thirds of each house of the General Assembly, and the vote shall be taken by yeas and nays and entered on the journals; and any act creating or incurring any debt against this State, except as herein provided for, shall be absolutely void; Provided, the Governor may be authorized to negotiate temporary loans, never to exceed one hundred thousand dollars, to meet deficiencies in the treasury; and until the same is paid no new loan shall be negotiated.


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Mr. Hargrove offered the following amendment: After “insurrection” insert the words: “or to relieve the people of this State in case of some great public calamity.” The amendment was lost.

The question recurred upon the substitute or amendment of Mr. Gates, offered on Friday, the 17th, to said section.

On motion of Mr. Sykes the amendment was laid on the table; ayes 76, noes 13.

Those who voted yea are-

Messrs. President, Aiken, Akers, Allgood, Battle, Bliss, Bolling, Brewer, Brown, Burgess, Burns, Burton, Calloway, Coleman, Dickinson, Flournoy, Forwood, Foster of Barbour, Garrett, Gibson, Gilbreath, Green of Choctaw, Green of Conecuh, Gullett, Hames, Hargrove, Harrison, Heflin, Herndon, Hudson, Ingle, Inzer, Johnson of Macon, Jones, Kelly, Langdon, Lea of Baldwin, Lea of Dallas, Little, Long, Lyon, Manasco, Martin, McClellan, Meadows, Moren, Mudd, Murphree, NeSmith, Nisbett, Norwood, Nowlen, O'Bannon, O’Neal, Parks, Pickett, Powell of Bullock, Powell of Tuscaloosa, Pugh, Ralls, Rather, Richards, Robinson, Smith, Sterrett, Stone, Swan, Sykes, Taylor, Torrey, Weathers; White,Willett and Woolf-76.

Those who voted nay, are-

Messrs. Booth, Bulger, Carson, Curtis, Delbridge, Foster of Hale, Knox, Lewis, Livingston, Lowe, Oates, Plowman and Rice-13.

Mr. Sykes offered the following amendment, which was adopted:

Provided further, this section shall not be construed so as to prevent the issuance of bonds in adjustment of existing State indebtedness.

Mr. Rice moved to insert the word “new” between the words “no” and “debt,” and the words “any” and “debt,” which was adopted.

Mr. Parks moved to reconsider the vote just taken.

On motion of Mr. Lowe, the motion was laid upon the table.

The section, as amended, was adopted.

Mr. Harrison offered the following amendment as an additional section:

No tax shall be levied upon persons or property to pay the interest or principal of any bonds, direct or endorsed, which have been or may hereafter be issued in aid of any rail road corporation. Provided the General Assembly shall, at its first session after the ratification of this Constitution, transfer by appropriate legislation to the holders of said bonds all collat-


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erals held by the State for her pretended endorsement of the same.

Mr. Hargrove moved to lay the amendment on the table, which motion was carried.

Section 6 was read as follows:

SEC. 6. The General Assembly shall not have the power to levy, in any one year, a greater rate of taxation than three-fourths of one per cent on the value of the property of this State.

On motion of Mr. Sykes, the word “taxable” was inserted after the words “value of,” and the word “within” was inserted in lieu of the word “of,” where it last occurs.

Mr. Moren offered the following amendment:

Amend by adding “Provided, that after the expiration of five years from the adoption of this constitution, a greater rate of taxation than one-half of one per cent shall not be levied by the General Assembly.”

Mr. Burns moved to amend the amendment by striking out “five” and inserting “one.”

On motion of Mr. Moren, the amendment to the amendment was laid upon the table.

The amendment was adopted.

The section, as amended, was adopted.

Mr. Prince offered the following amendment as an independent section:

No State or county license for the purpose of engaging in or carrying on any useful trade or occupation, shall be required of any citizen of this State; Provided, The General Assembly shall have power to authorize the issue of retail license or police regulations, promotive of the peace, good order, comfort and decency of the community.

Mr. Sykes moved to lay the amendment on the table; which was carried-ayes 50, noes 34.

The 7th section was read as follows:

No county in this State shall be authorized to levy a larger rate of taxation, in any one year, on the value of the property thereof, than one-half of one per cent; Provided, That to pay debts existing at the adoption of this constitution, an additional rate of one-fourth of one per cent may be levied and collected, which shall be exclusively appropriated to the payment of such debt or the interest thereon.

On motion of Mr. Sykes, the word “taxable” was inserted between the words “the” and “property,” and the word “thereof” stricken out and the word “therein” inserted in lieu thereof.

Mr. Sykes offered the following amendment:


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Provided further, That to pay any debt or liability now existing against any county, incurred for the erection of the necessary public buildings or other ordinary county purposes, or that may hereafter be created for the erection of necessary public buildings, any county may levy and collect such special taxes as may have been or may hereafter be authorized by the General Assembly, which taxes so levied and collected shall be applied exclusively to the purposes for which the same shall have been levied and collected.

Mr. Stone moved to amend the amendment by striking out the words “or other ordinary county purposes,” which was lost.

Mr. Pickett moved to amend the amendment by inserting after, the word “buildings,” where it occurs the second time, the words “or bridges,” which was adopted.

Mr. NeSmith offered the following amendment to the amendment, which was lost

Provided, To pay for new court houses and jails, not exceeding one-half of one per centum, an additional tax shall be levied and collected.

The amendment was adopted.

Mr. Oates offered the following as a substitute for the proviso:

That nothing herein contained shall prevent the levy of such additional tax as may be necessary to pay any legal debts or liabilities existing against any counts at the ratification of this constitution.

On motion of Mr. Richards, the substitute was laid on the table.

Mr. Rice offered the following amendment, which was lost;

Provided, however, That nothing contained in this section shall be so construed as to impair the obligation of any contract existing at the adoption of this constitution.

The section, as amended, was adopted.

Mr. Swan offered the following amendment as an independent section:

The General Assembly shall have no power to exempt any property from taxation, either personal or real, whether belonging to individuals, corporations or railroads, except as otherwise provided for in this constitution.

On motion of Mr. Cobb, the word “private” was inserted before the word “corporations.”

On motion of Mr. Sykes, the amendment was laid on the table.

Mr. Samford offered the following amendment as an independent section, which was adopted:


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The property of corporations, associations and individuals of this State, shall forever be taxed at the rate of taxation, Provided, This section shall not apply to institutions or enterprises devoted exclusively to religious, educational or charitable purposes.

The eighth section was read, as follows:

No city, town or municipal corporation, other than provided for in this article, shall levy or collect a larger rate of taxation, in any one year, on the taxable property therein, than one-half of one per centum of the value of such property, as assessed for State taxation during the preceding year; Provided, for the payment of debts existing at the time of the adoption of this constitution, and the interest thereon, an additional rate of one and one-half per centum may be collected, to be applied exclusively to such indebtedness; Provided, this section shall not apply to the city of Mobile, which city may levy _________ to pay the expenses of the city government, and ___________ to pay the present indebtedness and interest thereon.

On motion of Mr. Oates, the word “that” was inserted after “provided” where it first occurs, and the word “adoption” was stricken out and the word “ratification” inserted in lieu thereof.

On motion of Mr. Cobb, the words “and one-half” were stricken out.

Mr. Rice proposed the same amendment to this section, which he proposed to the seventh section, which was lost.

Mr. Brewer offered the following amendment for the purpose of filling the blanks relative to Mobile county.

And provided, this section shall not apply to the city of Mobile, which city may, until the first day of January, 1879, levy a tax not to exceed the rate of one per centum, and from and after that time a tax not to exceed the rate of three-fourths of one per centum to pay the expenses of the city government, and may also, until the first day of January, 1879, levy a tax not to exceed the rate of one per centum, and from and after that time a tax not to exceed three-fourths of one per centum to pay the existing indebtedness of said city and the interest thereon.

The amendment was adopted.

The section, as amended, was adopted.

On motion of Mr. Powell of Tuscaloosa, section nine, relating to the per diem and mileage of members of the General Assembly, was stricken out, as the same thing is provided for in the legislative department article.


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The tenth section was read, as follows:

At the first session of the General Assembly after the adoption of this constitution, the salaries of State officers, as now existing, shall be reduced at least 25 per centum, and after said reduction the General Assembly shall not have power to increase the same, except by a vote of two-thirds of the members of each house, taken by yeas and nays and entered on the journals; Provided, The pay of no officer of this State shall be changed during the time for which he was elected or appointed.

Mr. Pickett moved to strike out the section, which was lost.

Yeas 43, nays 51.

Those who voted aye are-

Messrs. President, Algood, Battle, Bolling, Brewer, Burns, Cobb, Coleman, Dickinson, Flournoy, Foster of Barbour, Gamble, Gilbreath, Gordon, Green of Conecuh, Hargrove, Harrison, Hudson, Herndon, Johnson of Hale, Johnson of Macon, Jones, Langdon, Lea of Baldwin, Lea of Dallas, Little, Lyon, McClellan, Mudd, Nisbett, Oates, O’Bannon, O’Neal, Parks, Pickett, Powell of Bullock, Prince, Pugh, Robinson, Samford, Torrey, Willett and Woolf-43.

Those who voted nay are-

Messrs. Aiken, Akers, Bliss, Booth, Brown, Burgess, Burton, Callaway, Carson, Curtis, Davis, Delbridge, Forwood, Foster of Hale, Garrett, Gibson, Green of Choctaw, Gullett, Hames, Heflin, Ingle, Inzer, Kelly, Knox, Laird, Lewis, Livingston, Long, Lowe, Manasco, Martin, Meadows, Moren, Murphree, Musgrove, NeSmith, Norwood, Nowlen, Plowman, Powell of Tuscaloosa, Ralls, Rather, Rice, Richards, Smith, Sterrett, Stone, Swan, Sykes, Taylor, White and Weathers-52.

Mr. White offered the following amendment to the section:

Strike out all down to and including the words “twenty-five per centum,” and insert in lieu thereof, “at the first session of the General Assembly after the ratification of this constitution, the salaries of the following officers and employees shall be reduced at least 25 per centum, viz: Governor, Secretary of State, State Auditor, State Treasurer, Superintendent of Public Instruction, Judges of the Supreme Court, Circuit Judges and Chancellors, and all attaches employed about the offices of any of said officers.”

Mr. Ralls moved to amend by striking out “and all attaches employed about the offices of any of said officers,” which was accepted.

Mr. Cobb moved to strike out “25 per centum” and insert “33 1/3 per centum.”


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On motion of Mr. Martin, the amendment was laid on the table. Ayes 50, noes 36.

Mr. Cobb moved to amend by striking out “judges of the supreme court, circuit judges and chancellors.”

Mr. Rather moved to lay the amendment to the amendment on the table. The motion was carried; ayes 57, noes 34.

Mr. Mudd moved to amend by striking out “judges of the supreme court.”

Mr. Garrett moved to lay the amendment on the table, which motion was lost; ayes 46, noes 46.

The convention took a recess until 4 o’clock, p. m.

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AFTERNOON SESSION.

The Convention assembled at the appointed hour.

The consideration of the report of the committee on finance and taxation was resumed, the question being on Mr. Mudd’s amendment to Mr. White’s amendment to section ten, which was to strike out supreme court judges.

The amendment was lost.

Mr. Mudd moved to amend by striking out “two-thirds of the members of,” and inserting “a majority of all the members elected to”; which was accepted.

Mr. Lea of Dallas offered the following amendment to the amendment: Provided, That all such salaries of officers shall be paid in gold coin or its equivalent.

On motion of Mr. Rather, the amendment was laid on the table.

Mr. Hargrove offered the following amendment to the amendment: And provided further, That no officer of this State shall employ any clerk or other assistant, at the expense of the State, except when authorized to do so by act of the General Assembly.

Mr. Garrett moved to lay the amendment on the table; which was carried.

Mr. Rice moved to strike out “a majority” and insert “two-thirds.”

Mr. Sykes moved to lay the amendment on the table; which motion was carried.

Mr. Livingston moved to reconsider the vote just taken.

On motion of Mr. Powell of Tuscaloosa, the motion was laid on the table.

Mr. Harrison offered the following amendment to the amendment: Insert after “chancellors” the words “and all other


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officers, both State and county, except sheriffs, clerks of the circuit courts, justices of the peace, and constables.”

On motion of Mr. Coleman, the amendment was laid upon the table.

Mr. Aiken offered the following amendment: Strike out the proviso, and insert in lien thereof, Provided, This section shall not apply to any of aid officers now in office; which amendment was accented.

Mr. Rice moved to strike out “a majority” and insert “three-fifths”; which was adopted.

Mr. Cobb moved to strike out all of said amendment which conferred any power upon the General Assembly to increase the salaries; which was lost.

Mr. Garrett moved to reconsider the vote by which the committee adopted Mr. Rice’s amendment.

The motion to reconsider was carried-ayes 55, noes 33.

On motion of Mr. Garrett, the amendment was laid upon the table.

Mr. Rice moved to amend by inserting after the word “Assembly” the word “elected.”

On motion of Mr. Garrett, the amendment to the amendment was laid on the table.

Mr. Heflin moved to lay the amendment of Mr. White on the table; which motion was lost.

The amendment was then adopted.

Mr. Aiken moved to amend by inserting after the word “salaries” the words “as now established by law.”

Mr. Foster of Barbour moved to lay the amendment on the table; which was carried.

Mr. Bliss moved to amend by inserting “afterwards” before “elected.”

On motion of Mr. Foster of Barbour, the amendment was laid upon the table.

The section, as amended, was then adopted-ayes 69, noes 21.

Those who voted yea are-

Messrs. President, Aiken, Akers, Allgood, Battle, Bliss, Bolling, Brown, Booth, Burgess, Burton, Callaway, Cobb, Davis, Delbridge, Dickinson, Forwood, Foster of Barbour, Foster of Hale, Gamble, Garrett, Gibson, Gordon, Green of Choctaw, Green of Conecuh, Gullett, Hames, Heflin, Hudson, Ingle, Inzer, Johnson of Hale, Jones, Kelly, Laird, Lea of Dallas, Long, Manasco, Martin, Meadows, Moren, Mudd, Murphree, Musgrove, NeSmith, Norwood, Nowlen, O’Neal, Parks, Pickett, Powell of Tuscaloosa, Prince, Pugh, Ralls, Rather, Richards, Robinson, Samford, Smith, Sterrett, Stone,


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Swan, Sykes, Taylor, Torrey, Weathers, White, and Willett-69.

Those who voted nay are-

Messrs. Brewer, Burns, Coleman, Flournoy, Gilbreath, Hargrove, Harrison, Herndon, Langdon, Lea of Baldwin, Little, Livingston, Lowe, Lyon, McClellan, Oates, Plowman, Powell of Bullock, Rice and Woolf-21.

Mr. Samford offered the following amendment as an independent section:

That the General Assembly shall not have the power to require the counties or other municipal corporations to pay any charges which are now payable out of the State Treasury.

The amendment was adopted.

The article was then referred to the committee on the order, harmony and consistency of the whole constitution.

Mr. Foster of Barbour moved to reconsider the vote by which the Convention on yesterday adopted section 64 of the report of the committee on the legislative department.

Mr. Oates moved to postpone the consideration of the motion to reconsider until 11 o'clock tomorrow; which was lost.

The motion to reconsider was carried.

Mr. Pugh offered the following as a substitute for the section:

There can be no law of this State impairing the obligation of contracts, by destroying or impairing the remedy for their enforcement, and the General Assembly shall have no power to revive any right or remedy which may have become barred by lapse of time or by any statute of this State.

Mr. Rice moved to amend the section by adding: Provided, however, That nothing herein contained shall authorize any suit whatever against the State of Alabama; which was lost.

Mr. Rice moved to postpone the consideration of the matter until 12 o’clock tomorrow; which was lost.

The substitute was adopted.

Mr. Woolf moved to reconsider the vote by which the Convention yesterday adopted section 62 of the report of the committee on the legislative department; which motion was carried.

Mr. Woolf moved to amend by inserting between “circuit” and “court” the words “city or criminal”; which was carried.

The section, as amended, was then adopted.

Mr. Oates moved to reconsider the vote by which the Convention on yesterday adopted section 61 of the report of the committee on the legislative department; which was carried.

On motion of Mr. Oates, the words “and inferior courts of record” were stricken out, and the words “from which an ap-


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peal may be taken directly to the supreme court” inserted in lieu thereof.

The section, as amended, was adopted.

On motion of Mr. Herndon, the vote by which the Convention on yesterday adopted section 53 of the report of the committee on the legislative department, was reconsidered.

Mr. Herndon offered the following substitute; which was adopted:

It shall be the duty of the General Assembly to require the several counties of the State to make adequate provision for the maintenance of the poor.

On motion of Mr. White, the Convention adjourned until 9 o’clock to-morrow.

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