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Brevier Legislative Reports, Volume XXI, 1883, 311 pp.




TUESDAY, Feb. 27, 1883-9 a. m.

The reading of the minutes was dispensed with.

On motion by Mr BELL the House amendment to his bill [S. 283] was concurred in, mailing the act take effect in October instead of January, as was originally set in the bill.


Mr. BROWN offered a concurrent resolution, which was adopted, for a Joint Convention to-day at 11 o'clock, for the election of a President of the Board of Trustees of the Benevolent Institutions, and one Trustee each for the Insane, Deaf and Dumb and Blind Asylums and three Trustees for the Asylum for Feeble Minded Children and Soldiers' Orphans' Home.


On motion by Mr. McCULLOUGH, the Constitutional restriction was set aside, by yeas, 44; nays, 0, and his bill [S. 178] supplementary to an act to establish Public Libraries, approved February 16, 1852, was read the second time by title, was considered engrossed the third time by sections and passed by yeas, 44; nays, 0.

Mr. McCULLOUGH explained so long as the Library is kept open and free to all the inhabitants of the town the tax may be levied-see page 121 of the Brevier Reports.

On motion by Mr. KEISER, the Constitutional rule was suspended by a two-thirds vote and the bill [H. R. 29] to enable several Counties in this State to sell and dispose of bonds for the benefit of the school fund, was read twice by title only, the third time and passed by yeas, 41; nays, l.

On motion by Mr. VOYLES a two-thirds vote again dispensed with the Constitutional restriction and the bill [H. R. 117] to amend Sections 365, 256 and 257 of an act concerning taxation was read twice by title only, the third time and passed by yeas, 33; nays, 7.

Mr. VOYLES explaining that it was to relieve the flood sufferers by allowing them to pay but 6 per cent. penalty on delinquent taxes instead of the heavy penalty allowed by law.


On Motion by Mr. SPANN another vote was taken on the joint resolution [S. 2] to allow $l0,000 to the widow of Edwin May, late architect of the State House, and it was passed the Senate by yeas, 29; nays, 16.

Mr. McCULLOUGH, since objecting to this claim the other day, has seen the contract between Mr. May and the State House Commissioner, and now has positive evidence that this claim is unjust. There is not $3,000 due this widow. He was creditably informed that the sons of the deceased are claiming the money as due to them: that they ought to have their share in their father's estate. If it is justice to pay $1,000 to the widow, it is justice to pay at least $10,000 to each of these children. This is so full of injustice to the State that it almost amounts to dishonesty.

Pending the roll-call-

Mr. VOYLES, in explaining his vote when his name was called, said: I want again to enter my earnest protest against the passage of this resolution allowing a bonus of $10,000 to the widow of the late Edwin May. There is absolutely no merit that I am able to see in the claim.

The vote was announced as above, and so the joint resolution passed the Senate.


Mr. WILLARD, from the Committee on Public Buildings and State Library, which has been conducting a State House inquiry, submitted two reports. That of the majority, signed by Senators Willard, Foulke, Hill, McClure and Adkison, reporting that there is no need of any additional legislation; that the State House Commissioners have full powers to act in any emergency that may arise, and that the loss of the contractors, according to their own showing, does not exceeed $90,000, and a minority report, signed by Senators Smith, of Jay, and Lindley. recommending the passage of a bill authorizing the reletting of the contract to Howard & Denig, upon the terms mentioned above.

These reports were placed on the files, without reading, and ordered printed.


On motion by Mr. HOOVER two-thirds of the Senate let aside the Constitutional rule, and his bill [S. 236] fixing commutations of terms of sen page: 262[View Page 262]tence on account of good behavior of persons confined in the State's Prisons, was read twice by title, considered engrossed, the third time by sections and passed by yeas, 40; nays, 3.


On motion by Mr. BICHOWSKI, under a suspension of the rules, the bill [H. R. 407] amending the present law so as to set apart semi-annually $10,000 as the State Normal School fund, was read twice by title, the third time by sections, and passed by yeas, 30; nays, 10.

On motion by Mr. MAY the bill [H. R. 285] to give his Court four terms instead of three, was pressed to the final vote under a suspension of rules, and passed the Senate by yeas, 81; nays, 0.


Mr. CAMPBELL called up a special order, being his bill [S. 10] and Mr. McCullough's bill [S. 19] concerning unjust discriminations of railroads-see pages 28 and 239 of the Brevier Reports-the question being on a Committee report recommending that the bill [S. 19] lie on the table.

Mr. CAMPBELL insisted railroad discriminations are against, the interests of the entire Commonwealth, and it is but right they should be prevented. In some instances double tariff is charged for less than 100 miles as is charged for ten times the distance. Because of the shortness of time left this session, if anything is done in this matter, it should be done quickly. Rail roads are but public servants; they take so much of the public land, and they become nuisance in so far as they injure and destroy human life. In return for their services they demand what may be considered as fees, and there is unquestioned right, as well as a necessity for legislative action and control in the interests of the people at large Indiana is behind at least fourteen different states in regulating the tariff imposed op the people by railroad corporations.


On motion by Mr. VOYLES, the House amendments to the road and Supervisor's bill [S. 8] was taken up.

Mr. SAYRE thought it incompetent to give due consideration to the many amendments proposed to this bill at this time, There is an amendment proposed to Section 20 which should not be concurred in. There are some twenty-eight Townships in one of his Counties, and it would make a difference of over $20,000 in the State, which would go as extra compensation to County Auditors, and be taken from the taxpayers of the State.

Mr. VOYLES said the amendment to Section 20 strikes out all in relation to the County Auditor.

Mr. SAYRE insisted that he is right on this question. The Auditor should perform this duty under the salary now provided by law. A Committee from the House of Representatives announced that the House was ready to receive the Senate for a Joint Convention to elect officers of certain of the Benevolent Institutions of the State.

On a motion by Mr. BROWN the Senate repaired at once to the Hall 01 the House of Representatives.

When Senators returned to their Chamber-

The Senate took a recess till 2 o'clock p. m.


On motion by Mr. HENRY the Senate refused to concur in the House amendments to the road and highway bill [S. 67] and asked for a Committee of Conference thereon.


Mr. CAMPBELL resumed his remarks interrupted by the Joint Convention before the noon recess. He said: It has been said to my knowledge by high railroad authority in the hotel lobbies during the present session that no Indiana Assembly has brains enough, or integrity enough, to pass a railroad bill. I confess that my ability as a general has been such that with all my efforts and importunities I have but just succeeded in getting this bill No. 10 from the hands of the Railroad Committee. AS to the question of railroad legislation I believe there is nothing of more importance to the taxpayers of the State than this and something should be done and can be done without in any sense interfering with or trespassing upon the legal rights and the equitable rights of the railroads. In the consideration of this question we will consider first, the necessity of legislation; second, the right to legislate, and third how best to legislate. As to the necessity Mr. C. called attention to the unjust discrimination made by which some localities and different individuals of the same locality pay unjust and extortionate rates as compared with others, How some localities pay a tax upon their products beyond that of others, making an unequal taxation. He called attention to the sudden and radical changes made in the rates of freight made without notice, often to the great detriment of shippers. He cited many cases showing that the rates are often doubled without notice. As to the right to legislate he called attention to the fact that the railroads are common carriers, public servants, having deeded or leaded to them certain privileges, occupying a part of public lands and highways receiving their compensation for service rendered by a system of fees not unlike that of the Recorder, Clerk, Auditor and other public servants, and that discrimination by railroads was as unjust and should be regulated by taxation as much as the other public servants and with as much right, that really railroad charges are a system of taxation upon the people, and that it is one of the first principles that taxation shall be equal, that the same right to regulate charges for interest, practices of banks, charges of hackmen, of millers, of toll roads, should also be exercised to regulate railroad charges and protect those who patronize them. He also read an extract from a letter from Judge Jeremiah S. Black supporting his position in the right to legislate. As to how to legislate he preferred his bill [S. 10]-which calls for a Commission-rather than the one offered by Senator McCullough [S. 19], as he thought a Commission far more practical than specific legislation He believed that the Board of Commissioners contemplated in his bill [S. 10] to act, as arbitrators bet ween the railroads and the people and between the railroads themselves was the practical solution to the problem. He said the railroads needed some power to arbitrate between them, and that the cutting of prices at competitive points below a fair rate was one great cause of exhorbitant rates at intermediate points lie cited several authorities showing where a Commission, the same as the bill contemplated hart worked beneficially to both people and the railroad. He closed by saying that he believed that a well organized Commission may save to the State of Indiana as much as the entire taxes now paid, and yet do no injustice to the railroads.

Mr. SPANN obtained the floor, but gave way for-

On motion by Mr. WILLARD the bill [H. R. 51] to provide for the taxation of dogs was read the second time.

On motion by Mr. VOYLES the Senate-concurred in the House amendments to his supplemental fee and salary bill [S. 173], allowing per diem to Clerk of Courts.

On motion by Mr. MAGEE the House amendment to his bill [S. 78] to amend the ace establishing a State Bureau of Statistics-striking out all that alludes to the Geological Department was concurred in.

Mr. BELL stating that but few would have voted for this bill had it been known it interfered with the tenure of office of Professor John Collett, which the House amendment makes right.

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On motion of Mr. BELL the bill [H. R. 105] concerning the liens of laboring men, mechanical and others-a bill prepared two years ago by the Committee on Revision of Laws-was, under a setting aside of the Constitutional rule by a two-thirds vote, read the second time by title, the third time by sections, and passed by yeas, 39; nays, none.


Mr. SPANN, as a member of the Railroad Committee, considered other bills on the subject far better than the bill S. 19, as it is unjust to the railroads, It is not elastic enough-it goes too far against the Corporation. He admitted the right of the Legislature to regulate railroads, but it is the duty of legislators equally to look to the interests of Corporations as well as peoples. Both have rights and interests that ought to be protected.

There are two sides to this question. He favored a just railroad bill. This bill would say to railroads they must charge for transportation the same rate for one hog as for 1,000.

Mr. McCULLOUGH objected to that kind of construction of his bill.

Mr. Spann (resuming) gave way for-

On motion by Mr. FAULKNER, the bill [H. R. 13] concerning the use of firearms read the second time by title under a suspension of the rules by a two-thirds vote, read the third time and passed by yeas, 43; nays; 3.

Mr. FAULKNER explaining the bill proposes to punish any person over tea years of age who shall point a gun, pistol or other firearm, whether loaded or unloaded, at another.

Mr. HENRY from the Committee of Free Conference on the Road and Highway Bill [S. 6], reported a recommendation that the Senate agree to all the House amendments but one to Section 20, striking out words in line twenty of the bill.

On motion by Mr. W1LLARD the report was concurred in.

On motion by Mr. ADKISON the bill [H. R. 14] to require all Companies or Associations to make settlement and payment to their employes at least every thirty days-see page 240 of the Brevier Reports-was read the first time and referred to the Judiciary Committee.

On motion by Mr. JOHNSTON the rules were set aside by a two-thirds vote and the bill [H. R. 198] for the relief of Allen Lepton and his sureties was read twice by title, the third lime by sections and passed by yeas, 85; nays. 6.

Mr. JOHNSTON explaining the money, $4,090, was lost by the failure of a bank, but over half has been restored by this honest officer, to whose relief the General Assembly should now come.

On motion by Mr. COMPTON the bill [H. R. 438] to amend Section 6,276 of the Revised Statutes of 1881, was by a two thirds vote suspending the rules read Twice by title only, the third time by sections, and passed by yeas, 33; nays, 8.

Mr. COMPTON stating is object was to exempt some property held by a Masonic Lodge in Terre Haute from taxation-the only change from the law as at present being it exempts real estate held by a charitable organization where there is no building on it.


Mr. HENRY, from The Joint Committee on the Decedent Estates' Bills, returned the bill [H. R. 223] with a substitute therefor, similar to the bill [S. 262] described on page 181 of these reports, which on his further motion, under a suspension of the rules of a two-thirds vote, was read twice by title. The report of the Committee was concurred in without reading. The bill was read the third time and passed by yeas, 49; nays, 0.


Mr. SPANN resumed his speech on the railroad tariff bill at quarter before 6 o'clock. He favored regulating the tariff on railroads, but would not refuse such corporations a hearing. He favored a law making the rates not only just to the shipper, but just to the corporations. The arbitration bill, S. 10, is something like what is needed; but the bill S. 19 has not the elasticity requisite-it seems to be almost an identical copy of a bill presented last session by Senator Menzies. He gave way for-

Mr. Benz on whose motion the Senate took a recess until 7:30 o'clock p. m.


Mr. SPANN resumed his speech. It a Railroad Commission be created it ought to be composed of a merchant, a manufacturer and a farmer; and no person should be on said Commission who was connected with or owned any stock, in any railroad That the Legislature has the power to regulate frame on railroads there can be no doubt. When he concluded, at 9:30-

Mr. HENRY spoke in favor of some legislation upon the proposition presented by both of these bills, and hoped to see the time when the Legislature would pass some carefully-considered and proposed bills, and hoped to see the time when the Legislature would pass some carefully considered and proposed bills regulating traffic over the railroads in this State. He spoke in opposition to the bill S. 19, an in favor of the bill S. 10, with some amendments which he indicated.

At 12:43 a. m. he gave way for a motion to adjourn, which came within one vote of being carried, but after several changes of votes the result was announced as yeas, 22; nays, 17; a recount showing yeas, 17; nays, 29. Mr. H resuming, concluded at 1:27 o'clock a. m.

Mr. GRAHAM was next recognized by the President protem [Mr. Spann], which recognition was resisted from the Democratic benches till 1:45 o'clock a. m., when Mr. G. proceeded to speak against the bill. At 2 o'clock he yielded to-

Mr. HENRY moved that the Senate adjourn till 10 o'clock, that the special order of business shall be the consideration of the House Bill No. 133 until 4 o'clock in the evening, and at that time the vote be taken upon the bill, and that no other business be allowed to interfere except by unanimous consent of the Senate, and that the Senator from Jay [Mr. Smith] withdraw his motion to restrict debate.

These motions were severally agreed to.

So at 2 o'clock and ten minutes a. m. the Senate adjourned.