Schoonover v. Petcina

CourtUnited States State Supreme Court of Iowa
Writing for the CourtMcCLAIN
Citation126 Iowa 261,100 N.W. 490
Decision Date13 July 1904
PartiesSCHOONOVER v. PETCINA, COUNTY TREASURER.

126 Iowa 261
100 N.W. 490

SCHOONOVER
v.
PETCINA, COUNTY TREASURER.

Supreme Court of Iowa.

July 13, 1904.


Appeal from District Court, Jones County; W. G. Thompson, Judge.

Plaintiff was assessed by the county treasurer under chapter 50, p. 33, Acts 28th Gen. Assem., on moneys and credits claimed to have been omitted from assessment for preceding years. On appeal to the district court this assessment was set aside, and the defendant appeals to this court. Reversed.

[100 N.W. 491]

E. E. Reed, Co. Atty., and Baily & Stipp, for appellant.

F. O. Ellison and Cash & Rhinehart, for appellee.


McCLAIN, J.

Notice was given to plaintiff by the treasurer on August 22, 1902, that moneys and credits which should have been assessed to him for the years 1897, 1898, 1899, 1900, and 1901 had been either withheld, overlooked, or omitted from assessment, and had not been listed or assessed for said years. As the assessment for 1897 should have been made before April 1st, the five-year limitation had run with reference to any omissions for that year. Siberling v. Cropper, 119 Iowa, 420, 93 N. W. 494;Thornburg v. Cardell (Iowa) 95 N. W. 239.

The notice given by the treasurer advised plaintiff only as to the aggregate sums of moneys and credits which it was claimed had been withheld, overlooked, or omitted for the respective years, and required him to appear on the 3d day of September at the office of the treasurer, to make objections to the listing and assessment of said property for taxation for said years, respectively. The amounts of moneys and credits specified for

[100 N.W. 492]

the respective years as omitted or overlooked were, however, those stated in a report made to the treasurer by the National Accounting Company, which showed in condensed and tabulated form a large number of items, designated by date, amount, volume, and page of the records, and an abbreviated description. At the end of this tabulated statement, which occupies nine pages of printed record, was a summary showing the total amounts for the respective years, and these were the amounts specified by the treasurer in the notice.

The first claim of appellant which we need consider is that this tabulated statement and the action of the treasurer in assessing the amount specified therein for the respective years made out a prima facie case against the plaintiff, and that he should have been relieved by the district court from such assessment only in so far as he introduced evidence explaining specific items, and showing that they were not properly included in the list of his moneys and credits. But this is not the construction which has been put upon statutory provisions allowing an appeal to the district court with reference to an assessment. On such appeal the court is to hear the matter in equity, and determine anew all questions arising before the taxing officer or tribunal which relate to the liability of the property to assessment or the amount thereof. See Code, § 1373. The matter stood before the district court in the same situation as before the treasurer, and it was for the court to determine whether or not the plaintiff was liable to assessment for the moneys and credits with which the treasurer had assessed him. It is to be noticed that the treasurer did not act upon the return made by a sworn officer, but upon the return of a company employed by the county for the purpose of discovering moneys and credits which had been overlooked, and certainly such a report cannot be regarded as a public record, which must be presumed to be correct. It is not pretended that the treasurer made any independent investigation or finding as to the correctness of the report, and we think it was for the district court to determine on all the evidence whether any moneys and credits had been omitted in previous assessments, and the total amount of such moneys and credits thus overlooked or omitted on which the plaintiff should be required to pay taxes. See Grimes v. Burlington, 74 Iowa, 125, 37 N. W. 106;Lyons v. Board of Equalization, 102 Iowa, 1, 70 N. W. 711;City Council v. National Loan, etc., Co. (Iowa) 98 N. W. 488.

It has been held in Frost v. Board of Review, 114 Iowa, 103, 86 N. W. 213, that the court cannot be converted into an original taxing tribunal, but can only review an assessment made. What was there said was only said, however, with reference to a case in which no assessment was brought before the court for review. Here we have an assessment made by the treasurer, and evidence received as to its correctness, and we think the court was required, under the statute, to determine the question whether the assessment was such as the treasurer ought to have made in view of the evidence before the court, and to fix the amount of moneys and credits for which the plaintiff should have been assessed by the treasurer.

It is further contended for appellant that no objections to the assessment by the treasurer could be considered on an appeal to the district court which were not specifically presented on the hearing before the treasurer, and that the objections made before the treasurer by plaintiff were too indefinite and uncertain to raise any question for his consideration. But no formal pleadings are required in such a case, and we think the allegation that the items of moneys and credits scheduled and proposed to be listed and assessed to him were not items for which he was liable to assessment for the years specified, and that during those years his indebtedness, which should be deducted from his moneys and credits, was sufficient in amount to offset the total amount of moneys and credits for which he was subject to assessment for those years, was a sufficiently specific objection to raise an issue, and that the issue thus raised could be tried on appeal to the district court. The requirement of chapter 50, p. 33, Acts 28th Gen. Assem., is that the person to whom it is proposed to list and assess omitted property under the provisions of that act shall have notice “of the time and place where objection to such proposed listing and assessment may be made”; and when such person has made objection, and has nevertheless been assessed, he is authorized to appeal to the district court, and have the correctness of the assessment determined on evidence presented. The treasurer, when acting with reference to the assessment of property, is not a judicial officer, and the ordinary rules of pleading and evidence applicable in the trial of a case in court need not, and, indeed, could not be followed in the proceeding before him. The plaintiff was entitled on his appeal to have determined every question which the treasurer was called upon to determine with reference to the liability of the plaintiff to assessment on moneys and credits for the years specified. Burns v. McNally, 90 Iowa, 436, 57 N. W. 908. The issue before the district...

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5 practice notes
  • Anderson v. Ritterbusch, Case Number: 407
    • United States
    • Supreme Court of Oklahoma
    • 21 Diciembre 1908
    ...the district court on all issues raised by him before the treasurer. Gibson v. Cooley, 129 Iowa 529, 105 N.W. 1011; Schoonover v. Petcina, 126 Iowa 261, 100 N.W. 490. ¶62 Counsel for plaintiff also raises the objection that appeals cannot be taken to the county court because that court, und......
  • City of Hattiesburg v. First Nat. Bank of Hattiesburg, No. 7761.
    • United States
    • United States District Courts. 5th Circuit. Southern District of Mississippi
    • 22 Agosto 1934
    ...or tribunal which relate to the liability of the property to assessment or the amount thereof.' Schoonover v. Petcina, 126 Iowa, 261. 100 N. W. 490. "`It is well settled in this state that the Legislature may provide for the exercise by a court of the power to judicially determine fact......
  • In re Mississippi River Power Co.
    • United States
    • United States District Courts. 8th Circuit. United States State District Court of Southern District of Iowa
    • 15 Enero 1917
    ...or tribunal which relate to the liability of the property to assessment or the amount thereof. ' Schoonover v. Petcina, 126 Iowa, 261, 100 N.W. 490. 'It is well settled in this state that the Legislature may provide for the exercise by a court of the power to judicially determine facts whic......
  • Haubrich v. Johnson, No. 47946
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Iowa
    • 13 Noviembre 1951
    ...of bringing the matter before the board.' This case is cited with approval, and followed, in the two Iowa cases of Schoonover v. Petcina, 126 Iowa 261, 100 N.W. 490, 492, and Wahkonsa Investment Co. v. City of Fort Dodge, 125 Iowa 148, 100 N.W. 517, The plaintiffs made their complaints suff......
  • Request a trial to view additional results
5 cases
  • Anderson v. Ritterbusch, Case Number: 407
    • United States
    • Supreme Court of Oklahoma
    • 21 Diciembre 1908
    ...the district court on all issues raised by him before the treasurer. Gibson v. Cooley, 129 Iowa 529, 105 N.W. 1011; Schoonover v. Petcina, 126 Iowa 261, 100 N.W. 490. ¶62 Counsel for plaintiff also raises the objection that appeals cannot be taken to the county court because that court, und......
  • City of Hattiesburg v. First Nat. Bank of Hattiesburg, No. 7761.
    • United States
    • United States District Courts. 5th Circuit. Southern District of Mississippi
    • 22 Agosto 1934
    ...or tribunal which relate to the liability of the property to assessment or the amount thereof.' Schoonover v. Petcina, 126 Iowa, 261. 100 N. W. 490. "`It is well settled in this state that the Legislature may provide for the exercise by a court of the power to judicially determine fact......
  • In re Mississippi River Power Co.
    • United States
    • United States District Courts. 8th Circuit. United States State District Court of Southern District of Iowa
    • 15 Enero 1917
    ...or tribunal which relate to the liability of the property to assessment or the amount thereof. ' Schoonover v. Petcina, 126 Iowa, 261, 100 N.W. 490. 'It is well settled in this state that the Legislature may provide for the exercise by a court of the power to judicially determine facts whic......
  • Haubrich v. Johnson, No. 47946
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Iowa
    • 13 Noviembre 1951
    ...of bringing the matter before the board.' This case is cited with approval, and followed, in the two Iowa cases of Schoonover v. Petcina, 126 Iowa 261, 100 N.W. 490, 492, and Wahkonsa Investment Co. v. City of Fort Dodge, 125 Iowa 148, 100 N.W. 517, The plaintiffs made their complaints suff......
  • Request a trial to view additional results

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