202 Cal. 110, S. F. 12678, Esberg v. Badaracco

CourtUnited States State Supreme Court (California)
Writing for the CourtSHENK, Judge
JudgeJUDGES: In Bank. Shenk, J. Waste, C. J., Koford, J., pro tem ., Preston, J., Seawell, J., and Richards, J., concurred. Langdon, J., concurred in the judgment.
Citation202 Cal. 110,259 P. 730
PartiesALFRED I. ESBERG et al., as Members of the Board of Education of the City and County of San Francisco, Petitioners, v. JOHN B. BADARACCO et al., as Members of the Board of Supervisors of the City and County of San Francisco, Respondents
Date12 September 1927
Docket NumberS. F. 12678

Page 110

202 Cal. 110

259 P. 730

ALFRED I. ESBERG et al., as Members of the Board of Education of the City and County of San Francisco, Petitioners,

v.

JOHN B. BADARACCO et al., as Members of the Board of Supervisors of the City and County of San Francisco, Respondents

S. F. No. 12678

Supreme Court of California

September 12, 1927

Page 111

[Copyrighted Material Omitted]

Page 112

APPLICATION for a Writ of Mandate to compel the Board of Supervisors of the City and County of San Francisco to include in its tax levy a certain sum for school purposes.

Writ granted.

COUNSEL:

Sloss & Ackerman for Petitioners.

John J. O'Toole, City Attorney, for Respondents.

H. W. Hutton for Adolph Uhl, a Taxpayer.

JUDGES: In Bank. Shenk, J. Waste, C. J., Koford, J., pro tem ., Preston, J., Seawell, J., and Richards, J., concurred. Langdon, J., concurred in the judgment.

OPINION

SHENK, Judge

Page 113

[259 P. 731] This is an original application for a writ of mandate by the Board of Education of the City and County of San Francisco to compel the respondents, as members of and constituting the Board of Supervisors of said city and county, to include in its proposed tax ordinance for the fiscal year ending June 30, 1928, such levy of taxes for school purposes as will produce the sum of $ 7,621,529, exclusive of amounts required for redemption of school bonds or interest thereon.

There is no dispute as to the facts. Within the time prescribed by law the board of education prepared its budget setting forth the amounts required for the ensuing fiscal year for public instruction in the city and county of San Francisco, including therein the needs for high schools, elementary schools and kindergartens. This budget was prepared on forms prescribed by the board of supervisors and specified the proposed expenditures under the headings, (1) Teachers' Salaries, (2) Other Maintenance Expenditures, and (3) Capital Outlays and Permanent Improvements. The superintendent of schools approved this budget and by computation determined therefrom the total amount of money required to be produced by a school tax after deducting the estimated income from the state of California and all other sources. A copy of the budget so proposed and approved was filed with the board of supervisors and with the auditor as the law requires. From this budget it appears that the board of education has determined that the sum of $ 7,621,529 is necessary for school purposes for the ensuing school year. The assessed valuation of all of the

Page 114

taxable property in the city and county for the said fiscal year is $ 783,000,000, and a tax levy of $ .97338 on each $ 100 valuation of said taxable property is necessary in order to produce the sum required by the board of education. During the months of May and June, 1927, the board of supervisors from time to time considered the budget of the board of education. After examination and consideration of the same, it deducted from the budget the sum of $ 987,306 and fixed a tax rate for school purposes of $ .84729, which would produce approximately the amount allowed by the board of supervisors. The items included in the school budget and disallowed or refused by the board of supervisors were $ 87,306 on account of salaries, maintenance, and operation, and $ 900,000 on account of lands, buildings, and repairs. Following the refusal of the board of supervisors to fix a tax rate sufficient to raise the amount required by the board of education, this proceeding was commenced.

The sole question for determination is whether the board of supervisors has discretion to revise, change, or modify the budget as so prepared and presented by the board of education and fix the tax rate for school purposes accordingly; or must the board of supervisors fix such a tax rate as will raise the amount of money specified in the budget of the board of education without diminution? It is the contention of the board of supervisors that a discretion is lodged in that body to fix a budget allowance for the board of education within which the latter board must confine itself in making its expenditures for the ensuing school year. The claim is based principally on section 3 of chapter I of article III of the charter of the city and county as amended in 1925 (Stats. 1925, p. 1172). That section provides that the supervisors shall meet annually between the first Monday of May and the first Monday of June and "make a budget of the amounts estimated to be required to pay the expenses of conducting the business of the city and county for the next ensuing fiscal year." This budget must be prepared in such detail as to the aggregate sum and the items thereof allowed each department as the supervisors deem advisable, except that in departments other than the police, fire, park, playground, public library, and school departments the salaries, wages, and rates of compensation of deputies, clerks, assistants, and employees of all kinds

Page 115

and classifications shall be itemized in the budget and shall be expended for the purpose for which the same were set apart, and none other. This section of the charter as amended [259 P. 732] in 1925 expressly repealed all provisions of the charter in conflict therewith.

We had occasion to consider and define the scope of the budget-making power of the board of supervisors under this charter amendment and prior thereto in the recent cases of Fitzgerald v. Badaracco, ante, p. 18 [ 258 P. 937], Griffin v. Boyle, ante, p. 95 [ 259 P. 729], and Jackson v. Badaracco, ante, p. 95 [ 259 P. 729], wherein it was held that the board of public works and the board of election commissioners of said city and county were, as to the expenditures to be made in their several departments, limited to the amounts appropriated by the board of supervisors in the exercise of its budget-making power. The respondents rely especially on the Fitzgerald case as announcing a construction of the charter provisions which should be made applicable to the school department. In that case and in the other recent cases referred to we were dealing with subordinate boards of the city and county concerning which it was entirely competent to provide in the charter for whatever powers, duties, restrictions, and regulations the people of the city and county might desire to prescribe in adopting or amending said charter pursuant to the provisions of the constitution. In those cases the boards are those whose activities, from a governmental standpoint, are primarily, if not wholly, of local concern and subject to charter regulation. But with the school department we are confronted by different and controlling considerations of law. The school system of the state is a matter of general concern as distinguished from a "municipal affair," as that term is considered in connection with charter cities. Article IX of the organic law of California provides for the establishment of a public school system. It is provided in section 1 of that article: "A general diffusion of knowledge and intelligence being essential to the preservation of the rights and liberties of the people, the legislature shall encourage by all suitable means the promotion of intellectual, scientific, moral and agricultural improvement." Section 5 of the same article provides that "the legislature shall provide for a system of common schools. . ." Section 6

Page 116

of the article provides that the legislature "shall provide for" the levy of a "city and county" tax by the board of supervisors for school purposes. By this article of the constitution the people of the state have made the school system a matter of state supervision, and judicial declarations to the same effect are numerous. (Kennedy v. Miller, 97 Cal. 429 [32 P. 558]; Hancock v. Board of Education, 140 Cal. 554, 561 [ 74 P. 44]; Los Angeles School District v. Longden, 148 Cal. 380, 383 [83 P. 246]; Board of Education v. Davidson, 190 Cal. 162 [210 P. 961] .)

The effect of this framework of laws surrounding and supporting our public school system is that the acts of the legislature, within constitutional bounds, are controlling over conflicting provisions of freeholders' charters. "While statutes providing a general system of laws concerning the creation and conduct of common schools prevail over conflicting charter provisions, the charters may provide for matters not enumerated in the general laws and not in conflict therewith, including matters in furtherance of the purpose of the general laws of the state." (18 Cal. Jur. 814 and cases cited.) Likewise the charter may, of course, include such matters concerning school management and supervision as are specifically authorized in the constitution. For example, section 8 1/2 of article XI, as adopted in 1896, provided: "It shall be competent, in all charters framed under the authority given by section eight of article eleven of this Constitution, to provide, in addition to those provisions allowable by this Constitution and by the laws of the state, as follows:. .. 2. For the manner in which, the times...

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28 practice notes
  • 112 F.Supp. 396 (N.D.Cal. 1953), 30818, Berkeley Unified School Dist. of Alameda County v. James I Barnes Const. Co.
    • United States
    • Federal Cases United States District Courts 9th Circuit United States District Courts. 9th Circuit. Northern District of California
    • 18 Mayo 1953
    ...the governing board of a school district may to some extent be circumscribed by the provisions of a city charter. See Esberg v. Badaracco, 202 Cal. 110, P. 730; Dupuy v. Board of Education, 106 Cal.App. 533, 289 P. 689. The only provision of the Charter of the City of Berkeley, California w......
  • 47 Cal.2d 177, 24244, Hall v. City of Taft
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court (California)
    • 19 Octubre 1956
    ...and concern and legislative enactments thereon control over attempted regulation by local government units. (Esberg v. Badaracco, 202 Cal. 110 ; Cloverdale Union H. S. Dist. v. Peters, 88 Cal.App. 731 ; Piper v. Big Pine School Dist., 193 Cal. 664 ; Kelso v. Board of Education, 42 Cal.App.2......
  • 47 Cal.2d 852, 23692, Wilson v. Beville
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court (California)
    • 8 Febrero 1957
    ...with state law and may even provide for matters of general concern when there is no state law on the subject. (Esberg v. Badaracco, 202 Cal. 110, 116 .) Here the matter of filing a claim against the city such as here involved is not only a municipal affair, but there is no state law on the ......
  • 45 Cal.2d 325, 19149, Roman Cath. Etc. Corp. v. City of Piedmont
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court (California)
    • 27 Octubre 1955
    ...system, provided that these provisions do not conflict with the general law. (Whitmore v. Brown, 207 Cal. 473 ; Esberg v. Badaracco, 202 Cal. 110 ; Anderson v. Board of Education, 126 Page 333 514 .)" A comprehensive zoning ordinance of the city of Los Angeles was held proper where it ......
  • Request a trial to view additional results
28 cases
  • 112 F.Supp. 396 (N.D.Cal. 1953), 30818, Berkeley Unified School Dist. of Alameda County v. James I Barnes Const. Co.
    • United States
    • Federal Cases United States District Courts 9th Circuit United States District Courts. 9th Circuit. Northern District of California
    • 18 Mayo 1953
    ...the governing board of a school district may to some extent be circumscribed by the provisions of a city charter. See Esberg v. Badaracco, 202 Cal. 110, P. 730; Dupuy v. Board of Education, 106 Cal.App. 533, 289 P. 689. The only provision of the Charter of the City of Berkeley, California w......
  • 47 Cal.2d 177, 24244, Hall v. City of Taft
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court (California)
    • 19 Octubre 1956
    ...and concern and legislative enactments thereon control over attempted regulation by local government units. (Esberg v. Badaracco, 202 Cal. 110 ; Cloverdale Union H. S. Dist. v. Peters, 88 Cal.App. 731 ; Piper v. Big Pine School Dist., 193 Cal. 664 ; Kelso v. Board of Education, 42 Cal.App.2......
  • 47 Cal.2d 852, 23692, Wilson v. Beville
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court (California)
    • 8 Febrero 1957
    ...with state law and may even provide for matters of general concern when there is no state law on the subject. (Esberg v. Badaracco, 202 Cal. 110, 116 .) Here the matter of filing a claim against the city such as here involved is not only a municipal affair, but there is no state law on the ......
  • 45 Cal.2d 325, 19149, Roman Cath. Etc. Corp. v. City of Piedmont
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court (California)
    • 27 Octubre 1955
    ...system, provided that these provisions do not conflict with the general law. (Whitmore v. Brown, 207 Cal. 473 ; Esberg v. Badaracco, 202 Cal. 110 ; Anderson v. Board of Education, 126 Page 333 514 .)" A comprehensive zoning ordinance of the city of Los Angeles was held proper where it ......
  • Request a trial to view additional results

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