Sarlls v. State ex rel. Trimble

Decision Date26 April 1929
Docket Number25,445
Citation166 N.E. 270,201 Ind. 88
PartiesSarlls, City Clerk, v. State of Indiana, ex rel. Trimble et al. [*]
CourtIndiana Supreme Court

1. MUNICIPAL CORPORATIONS---City-Manager Plan of Government---Petition for Submission to Popular Vote---Qualification of Signers---Proof Insufficient.---A petition for an election on the question of the adoption of the city-manager form of government, signed by persons who state therein that they are qualified voters, is not prima facie evidence that such signers are voters, so as to require the city clerk to certify that a petition containing a sufficient number of signatures is signed by a sufficient number of qualified electors, in the absence of a provision in the statute giving such statement that effect, as was included in the 1929 amendment thereof (Acts 1929, ch. 60 3). p. 98.

2. CONSTITUTIONAL LAW---Validity of Statute---Who may Question.---A party cannot question the constitutionality of a statute unless he shows that some right of his own is thereby impaired or prejudiced. Martin and Gemmill, JJ. p 99.

3. MANDAMUS---To Enforce Performance of Administrative Duty---Unconstitutionality of Law Imposing Duty.---For an administrative officer merely to perceive that some one might attack a law under which he is acting on constitutional grounds is not sufficient cause for him to refuse to perform a duty enjoined by the law and which it is sought to enforce by mandate. Martin and Gemmill, JJ. p. 99.

4. CONSTITUTIONAL LAW---Part of Act Unconstitutional---Effect on Remainder of Act.---The fact that a portion of an act of the Legislature is unconstitutional does not invalidate the entire act if the elimination of the invalid part leaves a complete statute that can be enforced. Martin and Gemmill JJ. p. 99.

5. CONSTITUTIONAL LAW---Constitutionality of Statute---When Determined on Appeal.---The constitutionality of a statute will not be determined on appeal unless it is necessary to do so to determine the merits of the suit in which such constitutionality has been drawn in question. Martin and Gemmill, JJ. p. 100.

6. STATUTES---Statute Providing for Alternative Forms of City Government---Constitutionality---Does not Embrace Two Subjects.---Although some sections of the act entitled "An act to provide alternative forms of government for cities" (10188--10256 Burns 1926) apply to cities adopting the commission plan of government, some sections to those adopting the city-manager plan, and still other sections to cities adopting either plan, the act is not unconstitutional under 19, Art. 4 of the Constitution as embracing more than one subject, as the only subject is "forms of government for cities." Martin and Gemmill, JJ. p. 101.

7. STATUTES---Constitutional Provision Limiting Statute to One Subject---Purpose---To Prevent Combination of Unrelated Subjects.---Section 19 of Art. 4 of the Constitution (122 Burns 1926), providing that every act shall embrace but one subject, which shall be expressed in the title, was intended to prevent the combination in one law of unrelated subjects. Martin and Gemmill, JJ. p. 101.

8. STATUTES---Title---Generality not Objectionable---Exception.---Generality of the title to a statute is not objectionable as not complying with 19, Art 4, of the Constitution (122 Burns 1926) if it is not made a cover for legislation which is incongruous in itself and which cannot fairly be considered as having any necessary or proper connection. Martin and Gemmill, JJ. p. 102.

9. STATUTES---Title---Sufficiency---Expressing General Purpose---Matters Germane to Such Purpose---Means of Making Act Effective.---If the title of an act expresses the general purpose thereof, everything contained in the act which is germane to such purpose or properly connected therewith as a means of making the act effective is covered by the title as required by 19, Art. 4, Constitution. Martin and Gemmill, JJ. p. 102.

10. STATUTES---Title---Sufficiency---Cover General Subject of Act---

Abstract of Contents Unnecessary---Enumeration of Matters Covered Unnecessary.---If the title of an act covers the general subject thereof, it need not go further; it need not contain a complete abstract of the contents of the act or enumerate all its provisions, matters and details. Martin and Gemmill, JJ. p. 102.

11. STATUTES---Constitutional Provision Prohibiting Creation of Corporations by Private Act---Applies to Municipal Corporations.---The section of the Constitution prohibiting the creation of corporations other than banking by special act (13, Art. 11, Constitution, 219 Burns 1926) applies to municipal corporations as well as to private corporations. Martin and Gemmill, JJ. p. 102.

12. STATUTES---City Commission or City-Manager Law---Not Special Act---Does not Violate Constitutional Provision Prohibiting Creation of Corporations by Special Act.---The statute authorizing cities to adopt either the commission or the city-manager form of government (10188--10256 Burns 1926) is not a special act, but applies equally to all the cities of the state, and, therefore, does not violate the constitutional provision prohibiting the creation of corporations by special act (13, Art. 11, Constitution, 219 Burns 1926). Martin and Gemmill, JJ. p. 103.

13. STATUTES---City Commission or City-Manager Law---Makes no Unreasonable or Arbitrary Classification of Cities---Applicable to all Cities that Adopt such Forms of Government.---The statute authorizing cities to adopt either the commission or the city-manager form of government (10188--10256 Burns 1926) makes no "unreasonable or arbitrary classification" of cities, but applies equally to all cities of the state that decide to avail themselves of its provisions. Martin and Gemmill, JJ. p. 103.

14. STATUTES---City Commission or City-Manager Law---Forbidding Participation in Politics by City Employees---Not Local or Special Law Punishing Crimes.---Sections 39--41 of the law authorizing cities to adopt either the commission or the city-manager form of government (10226--10228 Burns 1926) which forbid active participation of the city employees in party politics and penalize the violation of such provisions do not violate the constitutional provision which forbids the passage of a "local or special law... for the punishment of crimes and misdemeanors" (subd. 2, 22, Art. 4, Constitution, 125 Burns 1926). Martin and Gemmill, JJ. p. 103.

15. STATUTES---City Commission or City-Manager Law---Forbidding Participation in Politics by City Employees---Does not Grant Unequal Privileges or Immunities.---Sections 39--41 of the law authorizing cities to adopt either the commission or the city-manager form of government (10226--10228 Burns 1926), which forbid active participation of the city employees in party politics and penalize the violation of such provisions, do not violate the constitutional provision forbidding the granting of privileges and immunities which are not granted to all citizens (23, Art. 1, Constitution, 75 Burns 1926). Martin and Gemmill, JJ. p. 103.

16. STATUTES---City Commission or City-Manager Law---Forbidding Participation in Politics by City Employees---Not in Conflict with Fourteenth Amendment.---Sections 39--41 of the law authorizing cities to adopt either the commission or the city-manager form of government (10226--10228 Burns 1926), which forbid active participation in party politics by city employees and penalize the violation of such provisions, do not conflict with the Fourteenth Amendment to U.S. Constitution (39 Burns 1926) which provides that "no state shall make or enforce any law which shall... deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws." Martin and Gemmill, JJ. p. 103.

17. STATUTES---City Commission or City-Manager Law---Forbidding Participation in Politics by City Employees---Applicable to All Persons Coming within its Provisions.---Sections 39--41 of the law authorizing cities to adopt either the commission or the city-manager form of government (10226--10228 Burns 1926), which forbid active participation of city employees in party politics and penalize those who violate such provisions, do not contravene the provision of the Constitution forbidding the enactment of special laws for the punishment of crimes (subd. 2, 2, Art. 4, Constitution, 125 Burns 1926), because they apply to all who come within their provisions and rest upon an inherent and substantial basis of classification. Martin and Gemmill, JJ. p. 104.

18. STATUTES---Local or Special Law---Within Meaning of Constitutional Provision.---A law which applies generally to all persons that come within its provisions, even though applicable only to a particular class, is not local or special. Martin and Gemmill, JJ. p. 104.

19. STATUTES---Uniform Operation of Statute Throughout State not Required.---The Constitution does not require that the operation of a law shall be uniform throughout the state other than that its operation shall be the same in all parts of the state under the same circumstances. Martin and Gemmill, JJ. p. 104.

20. STATUTES---Legislative Interpretation---Acquiesced in---Entitled to Consideration.---Legislative interpretation of a statute, acquiesced in for a long period of time, is entitled to great consideration. Martin and Gemmill, JJ. p. 104.

21. MUNICIPAL CORPORATIONS---City Commission or City-Manager Law---Certain Provisions as to Elections Held Valid.---The various sections of the law authorizing cities to adopt either the commission or the city-manager form of government (10188--10256 Burns 1926) which provide that the commission elected by the people shall be the judges of the election and qualification of its members, subject to review by the courts in case of conflict (21), provide for ballots without political mark...

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  • Sarlls v. State ex rel. Trimble
    • United States
    • Indiana Supreme Court
    • April 26, 1929
    ...201 Ind. 88166 N.E. 270SARLLS, City Clerk,v.STATE ex rel. TRIMBLE et al.No. 25445.Supreme Court of Indiana.April 26, Appeal from Vanderburgh Circuit Court; Jas. T. Cutler, Special Judge. Action in mandate by the State of Indiana, on the relation of G. Arthur Trimble and others, to compel Lo......

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