Page images
PDF
EPUB

scientific, moral and agricultural improvement. The proceeds of all lands that may be granted by the United States to this state for the gupport of schools, which may be sold or disposed of, and the five hundred thousand acres of land granted to the new states, under an act of congress distributing the proceeds of the public lands among the several states of the Union, approved A. D. one thousand eight hundred and forty-one; and all estates of deceased persons who may have died without leaving a will, or heir, and also such per cent. as may be granted by congress on the sale of lands in this state, shall be and remain a perpetual fund, the interest of which, together with all the rents of the unsold lands, and such other means as the legislature may provide, shall be inviolably appropriated to the support of common schools throughout the state.

SEC. 3. The legislature shall provide for a system of common schools, by which a school shall be kept up and supported in each district at least three months in every year, and any district neglecting to keep up and support such a school may be deprived of its proportion of the interest of the public fund during such neglect.

Sec. 4. The legislature shall take measures for the protection, improvement, or other disposition of such lands as have been, or may hereafter be reserved or granted by the United States, or any person or persons, to this state for the use of a university; and the funds accruing from the rents or sale of such lands, or from any other source for the purpose aforesaid, shall be and remain a permanent fund, the interest of which shall be applied to the support of said university, with such branches as the public convenience may demand, for the promotion of literature, the arts and sciences, as may be authorized by the terms of such grant. And it shall be the duty of the legislature, as soon as may be, to provide effectual means for the improvement and permanent security of the funds of said university.

ARTICLE X.

MODE OF AMENDING AND REVISING THE CONSTITUTION,

SECTION 1. Any amendment or amendments to this constitution, may be proposed in the senate or assembly, and if the same shall be agreed to by a majority of the members elected to each of the two houses, such proposed amendment or amendments shall be entered on their journals, with the yeas and nays taken thereon, and referred to the legislature then next to be chosen, and shall be published for three months next preceding the time of making such choice. And if, in the legislature next chosen as aforesaid, such proposed amendment or amendments shall be agreed to by a majority of all the members elected to each house, then it shall be the duty of the legislature to submit such proposed amendment or amendments to the people, in such manner and at such time as the legislature shall prescribe; and if the people shall approve and ratify such amendment or amendments, by a majority of the electors qualified to vote for members of the legislature voting thereon, such amendment or amend. ments shall become part of the constitution.

Sec. 2. And if, at any time, two-thirds of the senate and assembly shall think it necessary to revise and change this entire constitution, they shall recommend to the electors, at the next election for members of the legislature, to vote for or against a convention, and if it shall appear that a majority of the electors, voting at such election, have voted in favor of calling a convention, the legislature shall, at its next session, provide, by law, for calling a convention, to be holden within six months after the passage of such law; and such convention shall consist of a number of members, not less than that of both branches of the legislature. The constitution that may have been agreed upon and adopted by such convention, shall be submitted to the people, at a special election, to be provided for by law, for their ratification or rejection ; each voter shall express his opinion by depositing in the ballot-box a ticket, whereon shall be written or printed, the words "for the new constitution," or "against the new constitution." The returns of such election shall, in such manner as the convention shall direct, be certified to the executive of the state, who shall call to his assistance the controller, treasurer and secretary of state, and compare the votes so certified to him. If, by such examination, it be ascertained that a majority of the whole number of votes cast at such election, be in favor of such new constitution, the executive of this state shall, by his proclamation, declare such new constitution to be the constitution of the state of California.—[Am. Nov. 4, 1856.

ARTICLE XI.

MISCELLANEOUS PROVISIONS. SECTION 1. The first session of the legislature shall be held at the Pueblo de San José; which place shall be the permanent seat of government, until removed by law; provided, hroever, that two-thirds of all the members elected to each house of the legislature shall concur in the passage of such law. (1)

SEC. 2. Any citizen of this state who shall, after the adoption of this constitution, fight a duel with deadly weapons, or send or accept a challenge to fight a duel with deadly weapons,

(1) This section places the location of the capital in the discretion of the legislature, and it is not subject to the control of the judiciary. People v. Bigler, 5 Cal. 23.

either within this state or out of it; or who shall act as second, or knowingly aid or assist in any manner those thus offending, shall not be allowed to hold any office of profit or to enjoy the right of suffrage under this constitution.

Sec. 3. Members of the legislature, and all officers, executive and judicial, except such inferior officers as may be by law exempted, shall, before they enter on the duties of their respective offices, take and subscribe the following oath or affirmation:

"I do solemnly swear (or affirm, as the case may be) that I will support the constitution of the United States, and the constitution of the state of California, and that I will faithfully discharge the duties of the office of according to the best of my ability.”

And no other oath, declaration, or test, shall be required as a qualification for any office or public trust.

SEC. 4. The legislature shall establish a system of county and town governments, which shall be as nearly uniform as practicable throughout the state.

SEC. 5. The legislature shall have power to provide for the election of a board of supervisors in each county ; and these supervisors shall jointly and individually perform such duties as may be prescribed by law.

SEC. 6. All officers whose election or appointment is not provided for by this constitution, and all officers whose offices may hereafter be created by law, shall be elected by the people, or appointed as the legislature may direct.

Sec. 7. When the duration of any office is not provided for by this constitution, it may be declared by law, and if not so declared, such office shall be held during the pleasure of the authority making the appointment; nor shall the duration of any office, not fixed by this constitution, ever exceed four years. (1)

SEC. 8. The fiscal year shall commence on the first day of July.

Sec. 9. Each county, town, city and incorporated village, shall make provision for the support of its own officers, subject to such restrictions and regulations as the legislature may prescribe.

SEC. 10. The credit of the state shall not, in any manner, be given or loaned to or in aid of any individual, association, or corporation; nor shall the state directly or indirectly become a stockholder in any association or corporation.

Sec. 11. Suits may be brought against the state in such manner, and in such courts, as shall be directed by law.

Sec. 12. No contract of marriage, if otherwise duly made, shall be invalidated for want of conformity to the requirements of any religious sect.

SEC. 13. Taxation shall be equal and uniform throughout the state. (2) All property in this state shall be taxed in proportion to its value, to be ascertained as directed by law; but assessors and collectors of town, county and state taxes, shall be elected by the qualified electors of the district, county, or town, in which the property taxed for state, county, or town purposes is situated. (3)

Sec. 14. All property, both real and personal, of the wife, owned or claimed by her before marriage, and that acquired afterwards by gift, devise, or descent, shall be her separate property; and laws shall be passed more clearly defining the rights of the wife, in relation as well to her separate property, as to that held in common with her husband. Laws shall also be passed providing for the registration of the wife's separate property.

Sec. 15. The legislature shall protect by law, from forced sale, a certain portion of the homestead and other property of all heads of families. (4)

Sec. 16. No perpetuities shall be allowed except for eleemosynary purposes. Sec. 17. Every person shall be disqualified from holding any office of profit in this state, who shall have been convicted of having given, or offered a bribe, to procure his election or appointment.

SEC. 18. Laws shall be made to exclude from office, serving on juries, and from the right of suffrage, those who shall hereafter be convicted of bribery, perjury, forgery, or other high crimes. The privilege of free suffrage shall be supported by laws regulating elections, and prohibiting under adequate penalties, all undue influence thereon from power, bribery, tumult, or other improper practice.

SEC. 19. Absence from this state on business of the state, or of the United States, shall not affect the question of residence of any person.

SEC. 20. A plurality of the votes given at any election shall constitute a choice, where not otherwise directed in this constitution.

SEC. 21. All laws, decrees, regulations and provisions, which from their nature require publication, shall be published in English and Spanish.

(1) People ex rel. Finley v. Jewett, July T. 1856. People v. Reid, id. (2) This section was adopted as a pledge of security to the native inhabitants. People v. Coleman, 4 Cal. 46. It applies only to direct taxation on property. People v. Naglee, 1 Cal. 232.

(3) That tho same property is taxed in another state is no ground why it should not be taxed in California, when it is within the limits of the latter state. Minturn v. Hays, 2 Cal. 590.

(4) Cook v. McChristian, 4 Cal. 23.

ARTICLE XII.

BOUNDARY.
The boundary of the state of California shall be as follows:-

Commencing at the point of intersection of forty-second degree of north latitude with the one hundred twentieth degree of longitude west from Greenwich, and running south on the line of said one hundred twentieth degree of west longitude until it intersects the thirty-ninth degree of north latitude; thence running in a straight line in a south-easterly direction to the river Colorado, at a point where it intersects the thirty-fifth degree of north latitude; thence down the middle of the channel of said river, to the boundary line between the United States and Mexico, as established by the treaty of May thirtieth, one thousand eight hundred and forty-eight; thence running west and along said boundary line to the Pacific Ocean, and extending therein three English miles; thence running in a north-westerly direction and following the direction of the Pacific Coast to the forty-second degree of north latitude, thence on the line of said forty-second degree of north latitude to the place of beginning. Also all the islands, harbors and bays, along and adjacent to the coast.

SCHEDULE.

SECTION 1. All rights, prosecutions, claims and contracts, as well of individuals as of bodies corporate, and all laws in force at the time of the adoption of this constitution, and not inconsistent therewith, until altered or repealed by the legislature, shall continue as if the same had not been adopted.

SEC. 2. The legislature shall provide for the removal of all causes which may be pending when this constitution goes into effect, to courts created by the same.

SEC. 3. In order that no inconvenience may result to the public service, from the taking effect of this constitution, no office shall be superseded thereby, nor the laws relative to the duties of the several officers be changed, until the entering into office of the new officers to be appointed under this constitution.

SEC. 4. The provisions of this constitution concerning the term of residence necessary to enable persons to hold certain offices therein mentioned, shall not be held to apply to officers chosen by the people at the first election, or by the legislature at its first session.

Sec. 5. Every citizen of alifornia, declared a legal voter this constitution, and every citizen of the United States, a resident of this state on the day of election, shall be entitled to vote at the first general election under this constitution, and on the question of the adoption thereof.

SEC. 6. This constitution shall be submitted to the people, for their ratification or rejection, at the general election to be held on Tuesday, the thirteenth day of November next. The executive of the existing government of California is hereby requested to issue a proclamation to the people, directing the prefects of the several districts, or in case of vacancy, the subprefects, or senior judge of first instance, to cause such election to be held on the day aforesaid, in their respective districts. The election shall be conducted in the manner which was prescribed for the election of delegates to this convention, except that the prefects, subprefects, or senior judge of first instance, ordering such election in each district, shall have power to designate any additional number of places for opening the polls, and that, in every place of holding the election, a regular poll-list shall be kept by the judges and inspectors of election. It shall also be the duty of these judges and inspectors of election, on the day aforesaid, to receive the votes of the electors qualified to vote at such election. Each voter shall express his opinion, by depositing in the ballot-box a ticket, whereon shall be written, or printed, " for the constitution," or "against the constitution," or some such words as will distinctly convey the intention of the voter. These judges and inspectors shall also receive the votes for the several officers to be voted for at the said election as herein provided. At the close of the election, the judges and inspectors shall carefully count each ballot, and forthwith make duplicate returns thereof to the prefect, sub-prefect, or senior judge of first instance, as the case may be, of their respective districts; and said prefect, sub-prefect, or senior judge of first instance shall transmit one of the same, by the most safe and rapid conveyance, to the secretary of state. Upon the receipt of said returns, or on the tenth day of December next, if the returns be not sooner received, it shall be the duty of a board of canvassers, to consist of the secretary of state, one of the judges of the superior court, the prefect, judge of first instance, and an alcalde of the district of Monterey, or any three of the aforementioned officers, in the presence of all who shall choose to attend, to compare the votes given at said election, and to immediately publish an abstract of the same in one or more of the newspapers of California. And the executive will also, immediately after ascertaining that the constitution has been ratified by the people, make proclamation of the fact; and thenceforth this constitution shall be ordained and established as the constitution of California.

Sec. 7. If this constitution shall be ratified by the people of California, the executive of the existing government is hereby requested, immediately after the same shall be ascertained, in the manner berein directed, to cause a fair copy thereof to be forwarded to the president of the United States, in order that he may lay it before the congress of the United States.

[graphic]

1 1

SEC. 8. At the general election aforesaid, viz. the thirteenth day of November next, there shall be elected a governor, lieutenant-governor, members of the legislature, and also two members of congress.

Seo. 9. If this constitution shall be ratified by the people of California, the legislature shall assemble at the seat of government on the fifteenth day of December next, and in order to complete the organization of that body, the senate shall elect a president pro tempore, until the lieutenant-governor shall be installed into office.

SEC. 10. On the organization of the legislature, it shall be the duty of the secretary of state, to lay before each house, a copy of the abstract made by the board of canvassers, and, if called for, the original returns of election, in order that each house may judge of the correctness of the report of said board of canvassers.

SEO. 11. The legislature, at its first session, shall elect such officers as may be ordered by this constitution, to be elected by that body, and within four days after its organization, proceed to elect two senators to the congress of the United States. But no law passed by this legislature shall take effect until signed by the governor after his installation into office.

SEC. 12. The senators and representatives to the congress of the United States, elected by the legislature and people of California, as herein directed, shall be furnished with certified copies of this constitution, when ratified, which they shall lay before the congress of the United States, requesting, in the

name of the people of California, the admission of the state of California into the American Union.

SEC. 13. All officers of this state, other than members of the legislature, shall be installed into office on the fifteenth day of December next, or as soon thereafter as practicable.

SEC. 14. Until the legislature shall divide the state into counties and senatorial and assembly districts, as directed by this constitution, the following shall be the apportionment of the two houses of the legislature, viz: the districts of San Diego and Los Angeles, shall jointly elect two senators; the districts of Santa Barbara and San Luis Obispo, shall jointly elect one senator; the district of Monterey, one senator; the district of San Jose, one senator; the district of San Francisco, two senators; the district of Sonoma, one senator; the district of Sacramento, four senators; and the district of San Joaquin, four senators. And the district of San Diego shall elect one member of the assembly: the district of Los Angeles, two members of assembly; the district of Santa Barbara, two members of assembly; the district of San Luis Obispo, one member of assembly; the district of Monterey, two members of assembly; the district of San Jose, three members of assembly; the district of San Francisco, five members of assembly; the district of Sonoma, two members of assembly ; the district of Sacramento, nine members of assembly; and the district of San Joaquin, nine members of assembly.

Sec. 15. Until the legislature shall otherwise direct, in accordance with the provisions of this constitution, the salary of the governor shall be ten thousand dollars per annum; and the salary of the lieutenant-governor shall be double the pay of a state senator; and the pay of members of the legislature shall be sixteen dollars per diem while in attendance, and sixteen dollars for every twenty miles' travel by the usual route from their residences to the place of holding the session of the legislature, and in returning therefrom. And the legislature shall fix the salaries of all officers other than those elected by the people at the first election.

SEO. 16. The limitation of the powers of the legislature, contained in article eighth of this constitution, shall not extend to the first legislature elected under the same, which is hereby authorized to negotiate for such amount as may be necessary to pay the expenses of the state government.

R. SEMPLE,

President, and delegate from Benicia.
Wm. G. MARCY, Secretary.
J. ARAM,
L. W. HASTINGS,

R. M. PRICE
C. T. BOTTS,
HENRY HILL,

HUGO REID,
E. BROWN,

JACINTO RODRIGUEZ,
J. McH. HOLLINSWORTH,

PODRO SANSEVAINE,
J. M. COVARUBIAS,

W. E. SHANNON,
E. O. CROSBY,
J. D. HOPPE,

W. S. SHERWOOD,
P. DE LA GUERRA,
T. 0. LARKIN,

J. R. SNYDER,
FRANCIS J. LIPPITT,
M, DOMINGUEZ,
B. S. LIPPINCOTT,

W. M. STEUART,
K. H. DIMMICK,
M. M. McCARVER,

J. A. SUTTER,
A. J. ELLIS,
JOHN MCDOUGAL,

HENRY A. TEFFT,
S. C. FOSTER,

S. L. VERMEULE,
E. GILBERT,
MYRON NORTON,

M. G. VALLEJO,

J. P. WALKER,
H. W. HALLECK,
MIGUEL DE PEDRORENA,

0. M. WOZENCRAFT. JULIAN HANKS,

A. M. PICO,

J. HOBSON,

J. A. CARRILLO,

J. M. JONES,

L. DENT,

A. STEARNS,

B. F. MOORE,

W. M. GWIN,

P. ORD,

CONSTITUTIONAL CONSTRUCTION. 1. The destruction of a building to stop the spread of a conflagration, cannot be deemed a taking of private property for public use, within the meaning of that clause of the constitution which prohibits such taking without just compensation. Dunbar v. The Alcalde of San Francisco, 1 Cal. 355; Surocco v. Geary, 3 Cal. 69.

2. The states possess the power to arrest and restrain fugitive slaves and to remove them from their borders, but not so as to obstruct the owner in reclaiming his slave under the constitution of the United States. In Re Perkins, 2 Cal. 424.

3. A deed void by reason of fraud, cannot be made valid by an act of the legislature so as to affect the rights of third persons. Smith v. Morse, 2 Cal. 524.

4. An act of the legislature authorizing the governor to appoint a judge of the supreme court during the absence of one of the judges from the state, is unconstitutional. People v. Wells, 2 Cal. 610.

5. The legislature can neither confer appellate jurisdiction on the district courts or original jurisdiction on the supreme court. Canlfield r. Hudson, 3 Cal. 389.

6. The cotemporaneous expositions of the first legislature, acquiesced in by every subsequent legislature, tacitly assented to by the courts, and where rights have grown up under it and it has become a rule of property, most govern in a question of constitutional law. Washington v. Page, 4 Cal. 389. 1. The constitution of this state is not to be considered as a grant of power, but rather as a restriction upon the powers of the legislature, and it is competent for the legislature to exercise all powers not forbidden by the constitution of the state, or delegated to the general government, or prohibited by the constitution of the United States. People v. Coleman, 4 Cal. 46; People v. Bigler, 5 Cal. 23; Williams v. Thompson, Jan. T. 1856.

8. The legislature in the exercise of any power granted or limited by the constitution, must use it for the public welfare, independent of any foreign or extraneous considerations. In Re State Capital, Jan. T. 1854.

9. Courts have no authority to inquire into the motives of the legislature in the passage of any law; neither hare they the right to declare from the face of a law that they were actuated by improper motives. People v. Higler, 5 Cal. 23.

10. The district court has no appellate jurisdiction from the probate courts. Reed v. McCormick, 4 Cal. 342. 11. The act of congress authorizing a transfer of causes from a state court to the United States court, because one of the parties is an alien, is not warranted by the constitution of the United States. Johnson v. Gordon, 4 Cal. 368.

12. No cause can be transferred from a state court to any court of the United States. Id. 13. In conferring upon county courts the power to prevent and abate nuisances, the legislature exceeded their constitutional authority. Parsons v. Tuolumne

Water Company, 5 Cal. 43. 14. The legislature cannot exercise judicial functions, and cannot, therefore, except one case or one party from the operation of a general rule of law. Guy v. Hermance, 5 Cal. 73. 15. The states are not deprived by the constitution of the United States of the power to confer upon their en conts all admiralty and maritime jurisdiction, and therefore, the statute of California conferring such jurisdiction is constitutional and valid. Taylor v. The Columbia, 5 Cal. 268.

16. Coagress bas no power to confer jurisdiction upon the courts of a state. Ex parte Knowles, 5 Cal. 300. Veither can a state court voluntarily exercise power or take jurisdiction of a case under an act of congress. Id.

17. The constitution of the United States does not prohibit the states from naturalizing aliens. Id. 16. The legislature cannot confer on one court the functions and powers which the constitution has conferred on another. Zander e. Coe, 6 Cal. 230.

19. The performance of certain legislative functions being confided to, or imposed upon, the legislature by the copstitation, must be exercised by that branch of the government and cannot be delegated by them. Peo ple r. Nerada, April T. 1856. 20. The legislature can impose no duties upon the judiciary but such as are of a judicial character. Id. 21. The incorporation of colleges or towns cannot be imposed upon the courts. Id.

22. The provision in the constitution “No person shall be twice put in jeopardy for the same offense," was not intended to apply to cases in which a judgment of conviction was reversed in the appellate court and a new trial ordered. People v. March, Oct. T. 1856.

B. The constitution is inoperative of itself and looks to legislation. Cary v. Tice and Wife, Oct. T. 1856.

24. The eighth article of the constitution is an express restriction upon the powers of the legislature, and the limitation applies to the necessary and ordinary expenses of government. Nougues v. Douglass et al. Jan. T. 1857 25. The power of taxation is given to the legislature without limit for all purposes allowed by the constitution. Id.

26. The judiciary possesses the power to construe the constitution in all cases, not expressly or by necessary implication reserved to other departments. Id.

27. All debts contracted in violation of the eighth article of the constitution are void, and the legislature has no power to levy a tax or appropriate money for the payment thereof. Id.

3. The statute of a state cannot require a greater amount of proof for the authentication of the acts, records, etc. of the several states, than that prescribed by the act of congress, but may require less. Parke v. Williams, Jan. T. 1857.

2. The grant of " legislative power” does not include the right to attack private property. Billings v. Hall, Jan. T. 1857.

30. The act of 1856, for the protection of settlers, declared unconstitutional. Id.

31. A board of supervisors appropriating private property withont making provision for paying the value thereof, may be restrained by injunction. McCann v. Sierra Co. Jan. T. 1857.

32. A tax imposed by law on Chinese passengers arriving in this state is unconstitutional. People v. Downes, Jan. T. 1857.

People v. McCauley, 1 Cal. 379; In Re Holdforth, 1 Cal. 438 ; Gunter v. Geary, 1 Cal. 462; Ross v. Austill, 2 Cal. 163; People . Wells, 2 Cal. 198; Russell v. Elliott, 2 Cal. 245; Ryan v. Johnson, 5 Cal. 86; Hunsaker v. Borden, 5 Cal. 288; People v. Gerke, 5 Cal. 3$1; Seale v. Mitchell, 5 Cal. 491; O'Callaghan v. Booth, Jan. T. 1856.

INDEX TO THE CONSTITUTION OF CALIFORNIA.

ART. SEC.
Absence from State, of Governor, duties to de-
volve on lientenant-governor

5 17
on business of state, not to affect resi-
dence

11 19 Admission into the Union, senators and repre

sentatives to request..........Schedule 12 Agriculture, to be encouraged...

9 2

ART. SEC. Apportionment, of senators and assemblymen 4 29 same

..Schedule 14 Assembly, members of, when and how chosen... 4 3 term of office.

3 to be qualified electors.....

4 4 must be citizens of the state one year

and of the county six months......... 5

« PreviousContinue »