Knoxville Housing Authority v. City of Knoxville

CourtSupreme Court of Tennessee
Citation123 S.W.2d 1085
Decision Date21 January 1939

Page 1085

123 S.W.2d 1085
Supreme Court of Tennessee.
January 21, 1939.

Appeal from Chancery Court, Knox County; A. E. Mitchell, Chancellor.

Bill filed by Knoxville Housing Authority, Incorporated, against City of Knoxville and others under Code 1932, section 8835 et seq., for a declaratory judgment concerning complainant's rights. From a decree favorable to the complainant, the defendants appeal.

Decree affirmed.

Page 1086

Daniel J. Kelly, of Knoxville, for complainant.

Roy H. Beeler, Atty. Gen., for the State.

James G. Johnson, of Knoxville, for Knox County.

W. W. Kennerly, of Knoxville, for City of Knoxville.

R. R. Russell, of Knoxville, for Eugene C. Fretz.

GREEN, Chief Justice.

This bill was filed by Knoxville Housing Authority under the declaratory judgments statute, Code, § 8835 et seq., seeking a judicial ascertainment of its rights in certain particulars. It is conceded that there is a real subsisting controversy and that one or more of the defendants is a proper contradictor with respect to each difference of parties presented and that the case is cognizable under the statute above mentioned. The controversies involve questions of law only and defendants interpose demurrers. The chancellor overruled the demurrers in toto and made a declaration in all respects favorable to the complainant. Defendants have appealed.

Knoxville Housing Authority was brought out under chapter 20 of the Public Acts of the First Special Session of the General Assembly of 1935, as amended by chapter 234 of the Pub.Acts of 1937. Generally speaking, these statutes provide that cities of the State may set up and procure the incorporation of an Authority with power to take over slum areas in the cities, designated after investigation, and to clear said areas, replan and reconstruct same, and provide therein housing accommodations for persons of low income. Such an Authority is empowered to issue and sell bonds under certain limitations, is endowed with the power of eminent domain, and the property of the Authority and its bonds are exempted from all taxation. An Authority set up under the statutes is authorized to contract with the United States Housing Authority with respect to financial aid from the latter source, and it appears in the case before us that such a contract has been entered into between the local Authority and the Federal Authority.

Since the enactment of the Federal Housing Act of 1937, projects like the one here involved have been undertaken in many of the cities of the country and the general scheme has become so familiar as to relieve us of the necessity of an elaborate and detailed statement here.

The points of controversy between the complainant and defendants involve the validity of the two statutes mentioned as a whole and involve the validity of certain provisions of the statutes which perhaps might be elided if such provisions were held bad. We consider these points separately, but not in the order in which they were discussed in the defendants' brief.

It is said that the Act of 1935 is wholly unconstitutional in that it embraces, both in title and body, more than one subject in violation of Section 17 of Article 2 of the Constitution of Tennessee.

The title of the Act of 1935 is as follows:

"An Act to declare the necessity of creating public bodies corporate and politic to be known as Housing Authorities to engage in slum clearance and/or projects to provide dwelling accommodations for persons of low income; to provide for the creation of such Housing Authorities; to define the powers and duties of Housing Authorities and to provide for the exercise of such powers, including acquiring property by...

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37 cases
  • Thomas v. Housing and Redevelopment Authority of Duluth, 35444
    • United States
    • Supreme Court of Minnesota (US)
    • May 25, 1951
    ...209, 200 A. 834; McNulty v. Owens, 188 S.C. 377, 199 S.E. 425; Knoxville Housing Authority, Inc., v. City of Knoxville, 174 Tenn. 76, 123 S.W.2d 1085; Chapman v. Huntington, West Virginia, Housing Authority, 121 W.Va. 319, 3 S.E.2d 502; Allydonn Realty Corp. v. Holyoke Housing Authority, 30......
  • Dayton Metro. Hous. Auth. v. Evatt, 29667.
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Ohio
    • March 15, 1944
    ...182 So. 725;McNulty v. Owens, Mayor, 188 S.C. 377, 199 S.E. 425; Knoxville Housing Authority, Inc., v. City of Knoxville, 174 Tenn. 76, 123 S.W.2d 1085. One state court of last resort suggests that if a state act authority housing apart from slum clearance, there would be grave doubt of its......
  • Ferch v. Housing Authority of Cass County, 7357
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of North Dakota
    • July 22, 1953
    ...constitutionality of our housing laws and support our decision thereon: Knoxville Housing Authority v. City of Knoxville, 174 Tenn. 76, 123 S.W.2d 1085; State ex rel. Porterie v. Housing Authority of New Orleans, 190 La. 710, 182 So. 725; Allydonn Realty Corp. v. Holyoke Housing Authority, ......
  • In re Brewster St. Hous. Site in City of Detroit, 144.
    • United States
    • Supreme Court of Michigan
    • December 19, 1939
    ...199 S.E. 425;Rutherford v. City of Great Falls, 107 Mont. 512, 86 P.2d 656;Knoxville Housing Authority v. City of Knoxville, Tenn.Sup., 123 S.W.2d 1085;Krause v. Peoria Housing Authority, 370 Ill. 356, 19 N.E.2d 193 Edwards v. Housing Authority of City of Muncie, Ind.Sup., 19 N.E.2d 741;Cha......
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