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officer of any domestic insurance company, or any agent of any foreign insurance company, or any medical practitioner; to issue subpoenas for the appearance of witnesses and the production of books and papers and administer oaths with like effect as is done in courts of law in this state. In the examination of any witness and in requiring the production of books, papers and other evidence, the commissioner of compensation shall have and exercise all of the powers of a judge, magistrate or other officer in the taking of depositions or the examination of witnesses, including the power to enforce his orders by commitment for refusal to answer or for the disobedience of any such order.
Sec. 28. Assistant to commissioner. The Compensation Commissioner may employ such assistants as may be necessary to carry out the provisions of this act; provided, that the expenses incurred shall not exceed the appropriation therefor. The Compensation Commissioner shall provide a seal for the certification of his orders, awards, and proceedings upon which shall be inscribed the words, "Compensation Commissioner, State of Nebraska-Official Seal."
Sec. 29. The Compensation Commissioner shall, for the purpose contemplated by this act, have power to issue subpoenas, compel the attendance of witnesses, administer oaths, certify to official acts, take depositions within or without the State of Nebraska as now provided by law, compel the production of pertinent books, pay rolls, accounts, papers, records, documents and testimony. If a person in attendance before the Compensation Commissioner shall refuse, without reasonable cause, to be examined or to answer a legal and pertinent question, or to produce a book or paper when ordered to do so by the Compensation Commissioner, the Compensation Commissioner may apply to the district court of any judicial district in the State of Nebraska, upon proof by affidavit of the fact, for a rule or order returnable in not less than two or more than five days, directing such person to show cause before the judge who made the order, or any other judge aforesaid, why he should not be committed to jail; upon the return of such order, the judge before whom the matter and such persons shall come on for a hearing shall examine under oath such person and such person shall be given an opportunity to be heard; and if the judge shall determine that such person has refused without reasonable cause or legal excuse, to be examined or to answer a legal or pertinent ques
tion, or to produce a book or paper which he was ordered to bring or produce, he may forthwith commit the offender to jail, there to remain until he submits to do the act which he was so required to do, or is discharged according to law. No person shall be excused from testifying or from producing any books or papers or documents in any investigation or inquiry by or upon any hearing before the compensation commissioner when ordered to do so by the compensation commissioner, upon the ground that the testimony or evidence, books, papers or documents required by him may tend to incriminate him or subject him to penalty or forfeiture; but no person shall be prosecuted, punished or subjected to any penalty or forfeiture for or on account of any act, transaction, matter or thing concerning which he shall, under oath have, by order of the compensation commissioner, testified to or produced documentary evidence of. Provided, however, that no person so testifying shall be exempt from prosecution or punishment for any perjury committed by him in his testimony.
(a) Subject to the provisions of Article 8, Chapter 35, Revised Statutes of Nebraska for the year 1913, and any act or acts amendatory thereof, the compensation commissioner shall adopt reasonable and proper rules to govern procedure, which procedure shall be as summary and simple as reasonably may be. The compensation commissioner shall regulate and provide. the kind and character of notices, and the services thereof, and in cases of injury by accident to employes, the nature and extent of the proofs and evidence and the method of taking and furnishing the same for the establishment of the right to compensation; he shall determine the nature and forms of application of those claiming to be entitled to benefits or compensation, and shall regulate the method of making investigations, physical examinations and inspections and prescribe the time within which adjudications and awards shall be made; provided always that such rules and regulations shall conform to the provisions of Article 8, Section 35, Revised Statutes of Nebraska for 1913, and any act or acts amendatory thereof.
(b) The compensation commissioner shall not be bound by the usual common law or statutory rules of evidence or by any technical or formal rules of procedure, other than as herein provided, but may make the investigation in such manner as in his judgment is best calculated to ascertain the substantial
rights of the parties and to carry out justly the spirit of Article 8, Chapter 35, Revised Statutes of Nebraska for 1913, and any act or acts amendatory thereof.
(c) A transcribed copy of the evidence and proceedings, or any specific part thereof, of any investigation taken by a stenographer for the compensation commissioner, being certified and sworn to by such stenographer, to be a true and correct transcript of the testimony, or of a particular witness, or any specific part thereof, or to be a correct copy of the transcript of the proceedings had on such investigation so purporting to be taken and transcribed, may be received in evidence by the compensation commissioner with the same effect as if such stenographer were present and testified to the facts certified. A copy of such transcript shall be furnished on demand to any party in interest upon payment of the fee therefor, as provided for transcripts in the district courts of the state of Nebraska.
(d) The compensation commissioner shall keep and maintain a full and true record of all proceedings, of all documents or papers ordered filed, of all rules and regulations, of all decisions or orders.
(e) The compensation commissioner shall prepare and furnish free of cost to employers, and to insurance companies licensed to write compensation insurance in this state, blank forms of applications for benefits or compensation, elections to operate under Part II of Chapter 35, Revised Statutes of Nebraska for 1913, and any act or acts amendatory thereof, reports of injury, proofs of injury or death, reports of medical attendance, of employment and wage earnings, and such other blanks as may be deemed proper and advisable. The compensation commissioner shall provide rules for the distribution of the blanks so prepared, and it shall be the duty of employers to constantly keep on hand a sufficient supply of such blanks.
(f) Annually on or before the first day of January of each year the compensation commissioner shall issue a bulletin which shall include a statement of the number and amount of settlements and awards made by the compensation commissioner, the causes of the accidents leading to the injuries for which the settlements and awards were made and a total statement of the expense of the compensation commissioner, together with any
other matters which the compensation commissioner deems proper to include, as well as any recommendations he may desire. to make.
(g) Every claim for benefits under the provisions of Article 8, Chapter 35, Revised Statutes of Nebraska for the year 1913, and any act or acts amendatory thereof, may be presented to the compensation commissioner for adjudication and an order and an award. Any party at interest may present a claim in person or by an attorney. Every order and award of the compensation commissioner shall be binding upon each party at interest unless notice of intention to appeal to the district court has been filed with the compensation commissioner within seven days following the date of rendition of the order or award: Provided, that the order and award shall be binding and final, notwithstanding notice of intention to appeal has been filed within the time limit, until the appeal has been perfected and service had upon the opposite party or parties.
(h) Each applicant for an order or an award by the compensation commissioner shall pay all expense of his or their own making. Provided, that there shall be no filing fees charged by the compensation commissioner, and that the compensation commissioner may at his discretion assess the costs of the applicant or applicants against the respondent or respondents as in like manner done in courts of the state.
Sec. 30. Saving clause.-In case for any reason any paragraph or any provision of Article VIII, Chapter 35, Revised Statutes of Nebraska for 1913, or any paragraph or any provision of this act shall be questioned in any court and shall be held to be unconstitutional or invalid, the same shall not be held to affect any other paragraph or provision of Article VIII, Chapter 35, Revised Statutes of Nebraska for 1913, or any paragraph or any provision of this act, except that Parts I and II of said Article are hereby declared to be inseparable, and if either part be declared void or inoperative in an essential part, so that the whole of such part must fall, the other part shall fall with it and not stand alone. Part I of this article shall not apply in cases where Part II becomes operative in accordance with the provisions thereof, but shall apply in all other cases. when the employer is subject to the provisions of this article and in such cases shall be in extension or modification of the common law.
Sec. 31. Repeal. That said original Sections 3647, 3653, 3654, 3656, 3660, 3661, 3662, 3663, 3664, 3666, 3667, 3674, 3677, 3678, 3679, 3680, 3681, 3682, 3683, 3684, 3686, 3687, 3688 and 3693, Revised Statutes of Nebraska for 1913, are hereby repealed. Approved April 24, 1917.
(House Roll No. 729.)
[Introduced by Messrs. Hughes, and Radke.]
AN ACT to amend Section 3797, Revised Statutes of 1913, relating to libraries, and to repeal said original section.
Be it Enacted by the People of the State of Nebraska:
Section 1. Amendment. That Section 3797, Revised Statutes of 1913, is hereby amended to read as follows:
3797 Sec. 22. Municipal libraries-grounds - building — rules. Every library board created under the provisions of this article shall have power to purchase or lease grounds, to exercise the power of eminent domain and to condemn real estate, except such as may be already occupied by permanent structures for business purposes; for the purpose of securing a site for a library building, provided that the person or person whose property shall be taken or injured thereby shall receive adequate compensation therefor, to be determined by proceedings introduced in the county court, and conducted as the law provides for condemnation by railroad companies; to erect, lease, or occupy an appropriate building for the use of such library; to appoint a suitable librarian and assistants, to fix their compensation and to remove their appointees at pleasure; and shall have the power to establish regulations for the government of such library as may be deemed necessary for its preservation and to maintain its usefulness and efficiency; and to fix and impose, by general rules, penalties and forfeitures for trespasses upon or injury to the library grounds, rooms, books, or other property, or for failure to return any book, or for violation of any by-law or regulation; and shall have and exercise such power as may