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portion of said tract sold to (or owned by) A. B., bounded on the north by,” etc.
RULE XIV.-These rules are to be taken as additions to and modifications of the Rules issued by this Board under date of March eighteenth, eighteen hundred and seventy-two. Further Rules will be adopted from time to time, as necessity may require.
The following additional rules were adopted April 9, 1872:
RULE XV.-Growing crops should be separately assessed at their full cash value at the time of assessment. On account of the difficulty of determining the value of such property early in the season, it is recommended that the time for assessing growing crops should be postponed to a later period in the season, when the crop is far enough advanced to enable the Assessor to fix a fair valuation.
RULE XVI.-In Section 3640 of the Political Code the words “capital” and “property” mean the same thing, to wit: property; and where all of the same has been assessed to a firm or corporation the owner or holder of any stock in such firm or corporation should not be assessed for such stock.
RULE XVII.-In demanding a list from a railroad company the Assessor should require from the proper officer thereof a statement:
First-Of the whole number of miles of railroad belonging to such company in the State, and the number of miles lying in his county.
Second–The whole amount of rolling stock belonging to such company in the State, and the proportion of such rolling stock taxable to such company in his county, pro rata, in conformity with the requirements of Section 3663 of the Political Code. The rolling stock should be separately assessed from other property of the railroad company.
RULE XVIII.-Railroads should be assessed at the full cash value per mile for each mile of railroad in the respective counties in which railroads lie. In determining this value the rule established by the Code should be kept in view, and Assessors should be governed by the same rules and circumstances which influence their judgment in fixing the value of other property. Railroad buildings and other property belonging to railroad companies should be assessed separately from the land and track.
RULE XIX.-Salt marsh and tide lands, swamp and
8 +VOL. II.
overflowed lands, school lands, and all other lands purchased of the State, by payment in whole or in part, must be assessed at their full cash value to such purchasers, or their assignees, or legal representatives.
Preëmption claims to lands should be listed as the possession interest and claim of A. B. in and to the tract of land described as follows (describing the land):
If, however, the entire purchase money has been paid by the preëmptor, and a certificate issued therefor, the land itself must be assessed to such preëmptor, notwithstanding the patent has not issued.
RULE XX.–An Act entitled “ An Act concerning the assessment of Animals," approved March 30, 1872, and printed as an addition to the last provisions of the Code affecting revenue, distributed by this Board, is repealed by Sections 18 and 3891 of the Political Code, and will not govern Assessors in the discharge of their duties.
RULE XXI.- What are known as consigned goods, in the possession of any person in this State, consigned to such person from any place out of this State for sale, are required by Section 3638 of the Political Code to be assessed as other property. The only exception allowable to this general requirement is in cases where goods consigned from a foreign State or country remain, and at the time of assessment are in unbroken or unopened original packages in the hands of the importer or consignee.
RULE XXII.-No specific tax, as in the old revenue law, is laid upon dogs by the Code; but as these animals are property, they, like other animals, must be assessed at their full cash value. Under the Code the Supervisors of counties may levy a special tax on dogs after the 1st day of January, 1873.
To equalize assess
3693. When the property is found to be assessed ments, how above or below its full cash value, the Board must add
to or deduct from the valuation of:
1. The real estate;
4. The amount of money;
NOTE.- We give below at some length a review of the questions arising upon the various provisions of this Title regarding the assessment and equalization of taxes:
The provision of the State Constitution concerning taxation is as follows: "Taxation shall be equal and uniform throughout the State. 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." (Art. XI, Sec. 13.)
The questions which have arisen under this section
1. Is a law authorizing a Board of Equalization to raise or reduce valuations of property, made by Assessors for the purpose of taxation, constitutional?
The first sentence of the section quoted requires that "taxation shall be equal and uniform throughout the State.” How is this to be accomplished if each Assessor of the several districts of a county, or of the various counties of the State, has the exclusive power of selecting a standard of valuation which is subject to no revision or alteration? When this provision of our State Constitution was adopted, Boards of Equalization (or officers intrusted with like powers) existed in almost every State in the Union which contained a constitutional provision similar to the one above referred to. It is, then, a fair presumption that our Constitution, by this declaration, contemplated the organization of such Boards. This position is strengthened by the succeeding clause, which declares: “All property in this State shall be taxed in proportien to its value, to be ascertained as directed by law." These subjects, however, will be discussed in another portion of this note. The first Revenue Law enacted in this State constituted the several Courts of Sessions Boards of Equalization, “ with power to equalize the valuation made by the Assessor, either by adding thereto or deducting therefrom such sums as shall appear to them just and equitable." (Stats. 1850, p. 138.) This law was passed less than four months after the adjournment of the Constitutional Convention. The many provisions of the Constitution and the debates thereon were fresh in the minds of all; and the Legislature (comprising, as it did, some of the original framers of that instrument-Messrs. Aram, Brown, Covarubias, Crosby, De la Guerra, Lippincott, McDougall, Moore, Steuart, Tefft, and Vermeule) were sceking to carry out for the first time its intentions on the subject of taxation. Each successive Revenue Law passed since that time has provided for Boards of Equalization with like powers. The policy of such a provision has always been recognized as wise and beneficial, and no voice has ever been lifted against it. The exercise of this power, however, by the county Boards has, at times, called forth decisions from the Supreme Court, which are reviewed.
In Patton vs. Green, 13 Cal., p. 325, the Court decided that “the Board of Equalization has no power to raise the valuation of land without notice to the owner." The question involved in this case was not the power of the Board to raise the valuation, but simply that the valuation could not be raised without notice to the owner.
It was intimated that this notice must be given only “because the words of the statute seem to require it.” The case turns upon questions raised under the statute—not under the Constitution and the Court acknowledge the power of the Board to raise the valuation, if the method of procedure pointed out by law is strictly pursued.
In People vs. Reynolds, 28 Cal., p. 107, the constitutional question is not discussed. The case is similar to that of Patten vs. Green; and it was held that under the statute of 1861 the Board could not enter on the assessment roll any property not already thereon. The Court expressly recognize the right of Boards of Equalization to raise the valuation fixed by Assessors, and declare “in matters relating to the assessment of property the Board of Equalization may hear and determine complaints respecting the same, and may correct errors in the assessment roll by diminishing or increasing the valuation fixed by the Assessor upon the property therein described." This case is affirmed in People vs. Flint, 39 Cal., p. 670.
In the People vs. McCreery, 34 Cal., p. 432, given at some length in note to Sec. 3607, ante, the Court, in speaking of the curative power of the Legislature over assessment rolls defective in form, say: “It was held upon the authority of People vs. Hastings, 29 Cal., p. 449, that the very foundation of proceedings for apportioning and collecting a tax upon property was the valuation; that such valuation must, under the rule of the Constitution, be made by the Assessor; and the Legislature could not supply this defect if it existed. All the details in making the valuation are subject to legislative control, and if error has intervened it is subject to the curative power of the Legislature, under the same principles that are applicable to the proceedings
subsequent to the valuation. But there must be a valuation in fact made by the Assessor," etc. This language of the Court simply declares that the Assessor shall set some value to the property which he lists or assesses. This valuation is not necessarily conclusive; in fact, from the language of the Court, it appears that the Legislature can control the details in making the valuation as well as in correcting errors subsequent thereto.
But in this same decision the Court, while debating these constitutional questions, expressly recognize the powers of the County Boards to alter the valuations made by the Assessors. Justice Rhodes, in delivering the opinion of the Court, says: “ The valuation, as we have remarked, is to be made by the Assessor, and the provinwe of the Board is to correct errors by adding to or deducting from the valuation,” etc.
This same power is also conceded to the Boards in People vs. Arguello, 37 Cal., p. 524, and Central Pacific Railroad vs. Supervisors of Placer County (April term, 1872), cited in note to Sec. 3607, ante.
An error in valuation must be one of figures. The power alone to correct errors in valuation authorizes the Board to change any and all figures or numerals expressing the value of property. But the Court is . more explicit. It follows the tautological expression of the statute, and declares that the correction may be made by adding to or deducting from the valuation. The exercise of this power is not denied in any reported case, but is expressly declared, or silently admitted, in Guy vs. Washburn, 23 Cal., p. 111; Patten vs. Green, 13 Cal., p. 327; Cowell vs. Doub, 12 Cal., p. 273; People vs. Reynolds, 28 Cal., p. 113; Central Pacific Railroad vs. Placer County, 32 Cal., p. 582; People vs. Arguello, 37 Cal., p. 524; People vs. Flint, 39 Cal., p. 670; Central Pacific Railroad vs. Supervisors of Placer County (April term, 1872).
The question then as to the right of Boards of Equalization to raise or reduce the valuation of property is too well settled to be disturbed. It has been acquiesced in by numerous decisions and has been exercised ever since the formation of the State, and cannot now be an open question.
But from the clause in the Constitution which provides that “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 situ