Изображения страниц

panies doing business in this State, and to require from such companies, fro time to time, special reports and statements under oath, concerning the? business; it shall keep itself fully informed of the physical condition of i of the railroads of the State, as to the manner in which they are operated with reference to the security and accommodation of the public, and sta from time to time, make and enforce such requirements, rules and regis tions as may be necessary to prevent unjust or unreasonable discriminations any transportation or transmission company in favor of, or against, any pe son, locality, community, connecting line, or kind of traffic, in the matter d car service, train or boat schedule, efficiency of transportation or otherwis in connection with the public duties of such company. Before the commissi shall prescribe or fix any rate, charge, or classification of traffic, and before shall make any order, rule, regulation or requirement directed against any or more companies by name, the company or companies to be affected by sai rate, charge, classification, order, rule, regulation or requirement, shall first given, by the commission, at least ten days notice of the time and place, wi and where the contemplated action in the premises will be considered m disposed of, and shall be afforded a reasonable opportunity to introduce si dence and to be heard thereon, to the end that justice may be done, shall have process to enforce the attendance of witnesses; and before the commission shall make or prescribe any general order, rule, regulation requirement, not directed against any specific company or companies by DPS the contemplated general order, rule, regulation or requirement shall is be published, in substance, not less than once a week for four consect weeks in one or more of the newspapers of general circulation published in 2 city of Richmond, Virginia, together with notice of the time and place, whe and where the commission will hear any objections which may be urge!" any person interested, against the proposed order, rule, regulation or req ment; and every such general order, rule, regulation or requirement, by the commission, shall be published at length, for the time and is mammer above specified, before it shall go into effect, and shall also, as d as it remains in force, be published in each subsequent annual report of commission. The authority of the commission (subject to review on a as hereinafter provided) to prescribe rates, charges and classifications traffic, for transportation and transmission companies, shall be paramount: " its authority to prescribe any other rules, regulations or requirements corporations or other persons shall be subject to the superior authority of General Assembly to legislate thereon by general laws; provided, however. nothing in this section shall impair the right which has heretofore beet. " may hereafter be, conferred by law upon the authorities of any city, tow county to prescribe rules, regulations or rates of charge to be observed by g public service corporation in connection with any services performed by under a municipal or county franchise granted by such city, town or con so far as such service may be wholly within the limits of the city, tom county granting the franchise. Upon the request of the parties interested shall be the duty of the commission, as far as possible, to effect, by medist the adjustment of claims, and the settlement of controversies between this portation or transmission companies and their patrons.

(e) In all matters pertaining to the public visitation, regulation or et trol of corporations, and within the jurisdiction of the commission, it s have the powers and authority of a court of record, to administer cath compel the attendance of witnesses and the production of papers, to pas for contempt any person guilty of disrespectful or disorderly conduct in " presence of this commission while in session, and to enforce compliance any of its lawful orders or requirements by adjudging, and enforcing own appropriate process, against the delinquent or offending company (afte shall have been first duly cited, proceeded against by due process of 37 before the commission sitting as a court, and afforded opportunity to introdot evidence and to be heard, as well against the validity, justness or reasons ness of the order or requirement alleged to have been violated, as against

[ocr errors]


bility of the company for the alleged violation), such fines or other penalties may be prescribed or authorized by this Constitution or by law. The comssion may be vested with such additional powers, and charged with such her duties (not inconsistent with this Constitution) as may be prescribed law, in connection with the visitation, regulation or control of corporations, with the prescribing and enforcing of rates and charges to be observed in e conduct of any business where the State has the right to prescribe the rates ad charges in connection therewith, or with the assessment of the property of rporations, or the appraisement of their franchises, for taxation, or with e investigation of the subject of taxation generally. Any corporation failing refusing to obey any valid order or requirement of the commission, within ich reasonable time, not less than ten days, as shall be fixed in the order, ay be fined by the commission (proceeding by due process of law as aforeid) such sum, not exceeding five hundred dollars, as the commission may em proper, or such sum, in excess of five hundred dollars, as may be preribed, or authorized by law, and each day's continuance of such failure or fusal, after due service upon such corporation of the order or requirement f the commission, shall be a separate offence; provided, that should the operaon of such order or requirement be suspended pending an appeal therefrom, he period of such suspension shall not be computed against the company in the atter of its liability to fines or penalties.

(d) From any action of the commission prescribing rates, charges or assifications of traffic, or affecting the train schedule of any transportation ›mpany, or requiring additional facilities, conveniences or public service of y transportation or transmission company, or refusing to approve a suspendg bond, or requiring additional security thereon or an increase thereof, 3 provided for in sub-section (e) of this section, an appeal (subject to such asonable limitations as to time, regulations as to procedure and provisions to costs, as may be prescribed by law) may be taken by the corporation hose rates, charges or classification of traffic, schedule, facilities, conveniences · service, are affected, or by any person deeming himself aggrieved by such tion, or (if allowed by law) by the Commonwealth. Until otherwise proded by law, such appeal shall be taken in the manner in which appeals may taken to the Supreme Court of Appeals from the inferior courts, except at such an appeal shall be of right, and the Supreme Court of Appeals may ovide by rule for proceedings in the matter of appeals in any particular in hich the existing rules of law are applicable. If such appeal be taken by the rporation whose rates, charges or classifications of traffic, schedules, facilities, nveniences or service are affected, the Commonwealth shall be made the pellée; but, in the other cases mentioned, the corporation so affected shall made the appellee. The General Assembly may also, by general laws, prode for appeals from any other action of the commission, by the Comnionalth or by any person interested, irrespective of the amount involved. All peals from the commission shall be to the Supreme Court of Appeals only; d in all appeals to which the Commonwealth is a party, it shall be reprerated by the Attorney General or his legally appointed representative. Νο Furt of this Commonwealth (except the Supreme Court of Appeals, by way appeals as herein authorized) shall have jurisdiction to review reverse, cort or annul any action of the commission, within the scope of its authority, to suspend or delay the execution or operation thereof, or to enjoin, restain or interfere with the commission in the performance of its official ties; provided, however, that the writs of mandamus and prohibition shall from the Supreme Court of Appeals to the commission in all cases where ch writs, respectively, would lie to any inferior tribunal or officer.

(e) Upon the granting of an appeal, a writ of supersedeas may be arded by the appellate court. suspending the operation of the action apled from until the final disposition of the appeal; but, prior to the final Versal thereof by the appellate court, no action of the commission prescribing affecting the rates, charges or classification of traffic, of any transportation transmission company shall be delayed, or suspended, in its operation, by

reason of any proceedings resulting from such appeal until a suspending bond shall first have been executed and filed with, and approved by, the commis sion (or approved on review by the Supreme Court of Appeals), payable to the Commonwealth, and sufficient in amount and security to insure the prompt refunding, by the appealing corporation, to the parties entitled thereto, all charges which such company may collect or receive, pending the appeal in excess of those fixed, or authorized, by the final decision of the court on appeal. The commission, upon the execution of such bond, shall forthwith require the appealing company, under penalty of the immediate enforcement (pending the appeal and notwithstanding any supersedeas), of the order or requirement appealed from, to keep such accounts, and to make to the com mission, from time to time, such reports, verified by oath, as may, judgment of the commission, suffice to show the amounts being charged or received by the company, pending the appeal, in excess of the charge allowed by the action of the commission appealed from, together with the names and addresses of the persons to whom such overcharges will be refundable in case the charges made by the company pending the appeal be not sustained a such appeal; and the commission shall also, from time to time, require su company, under like penalty, to give additional security on, or to increas the said suspending bond, whenever, in the opinion of the commission, the same may be necessary to insure the prompt refunding of the overcharger aforesaid. Upon the final decision of such appeal, all amounts which the appealing company may have collected, pending the appeal, in excess of that authorized by such final decision, shall be promptly refunded by the company to the parties entitled thereto, in such manner, and through such methods of distribution, as may be prescribed by the commission, or by law. All such appeals affecting rates, charges or classifications of traffic, shall have pre dence upon the docket of the appellate court, and shall be heard and disp of promptly by the court, irrespective of its place of session, next after the habeas corpus, and Commonwealth's, cases already on the docket of the cont

(f) In no case of appeal from the commission shall any new or additiona evidence be introduced in the appellate court; but the chairman of th commission, under the seal of the commission, shall certify to the appelt court all the facts upon which the action appealed from was based and wha may be essential for the proper decision of the appeal, together with su of the evidence introduced before, or considered by, the commission as ma be selected, specified and required to be certified, by any party in interest. well as such other evidence, so introduced or considered, as the commissin may deem proper to certify. The commission shall, whenever an appeal taken therefrom, file with the record of the case, and as a part thereof. written statement of the reasons upon which the action appealed from w based, and such statement shall be read and considered by the appellate court. upon disposing of the appeal. The appellate court shall have jurisdiction, a such appeal, to consider and determine the reasonableness and justness of action of the commission appealed from, as well as any other matter aris under such appeal; provided, however, that the action of the commission a pealed from shall be regarded as prima facie just, reasonable and correct but the court may, when it deems necessary, in the interest of justice, reman to the commission any case pending on appeal, and require the same to further investigated by the commission, and reported upon to the court ( gether with a certificate of such additional evidence as may be tendered before the commission by any party in interest), before the appeal is finally decides

(g) Whenever the court, upon appeal, shall reverse an order of the con mission affecting the rates, charges or the classification of traffic of any tras portation or transmission company, it shall, at the same time, substitute there for such order as, in its opinion, the commission should have made at th time of entering the order appealed from; otherwise the reversal order st not be valid. Such substituted order shall have the same force and effe (and none other) as if it had been entered by the commission at the time the original order appealed from was entered. The right of the commission. P

rescribe and enforce rates, charges, classifications, rules and regulations, affectng any or all actions of the commission theretofore entered by it and appealed from, but based upon circumstances or conditions different from those existng at the time the order appealed from was made, shall not be suspended or mpaired by reason of the pendency of such appeal, but no order of the commission, prescribing or altering such rates, charges, classifications, rules or 'egulations, shall be retroactive.

(h) The right of any person to institute and prosecute in the ordinary courts of justice, any action, suit or motion against any transportation or ransmission company, for any claim or cause of action against such company, shall not be extinguished or impaired, by reason of any fine or other penalty vhich the commission may impose, or be authorized to impose, upon such ompany because of its breach of any public duty, or because of its failure o comply with any order or requirement of the commission; but, in no such roceeding by any person against such corporation, nor in any collateral roceeding, shall the reasonableness, justness or validity of any rate, charge, lassification of traffic, rule, regulation or requirement, theretofore, prescribed y the commission, within the scope of its authority, and then in force, be uestioned; provided, however, that no case based upon or involving any order f the commission shall be heard, or disposed of, against the objection of either arty, so long as such order is suspended in its operation by an order of the Supreme Court of Appeals as authorized by this Constitution or by any law assed in pursuance thereof.

(i) The commission shall make annual reports to the Governor of its proeedings, in which reports it shall recommend, from time to time, such new or dditional legislation in reference to its powers or duties, or to the creation, upervision, regulation or control of corporations, or to the subject of taxation, s it may deem wise or expedient, or as may be required by law.7

(k) Upon the organization of the State Corporation Commission, the Board f Public Works and the office of Railroad Commissioner shall cease to exist, and Il books, papers and documents pertaining thereto shall be transferred to, and ecome a part of the records of, the office of the State Corporation Commission. (1) After the first day of January, nineteen hundred and five, in addition > the modes of amendment provided for in Article Fifteen of this Constitution, le General Assembly, upon the recommendation of the State Corporation Comission, may by law, from time to time amend sub-sections a to i, inclusive, of his section, or any of them, or any such amendment thereof; provided, that no mendment made under authority of this sub-section shall contravene the proisions of any part of this Constitution other than the sub-sections last above eferred to or any such amendment thereof.

SEC. 157. Provisions shall be made by general laws for the payment of a ee to the Commonwealth by every domestic corporation, upon the granting, mendment or extension of its charter, and by every foreign corporation upon btaining a license to do business in this State as specified in this section; and Iso for the payment, by every domestic corporation, and foreign corporation oing business in this State, or an annual registration fee of not less than five ollars nor more than twenty-five dollars, which shall be irrespective of any ›ecific license, or other tax imposed by law upon such company for the privige of carrying on its business in this State, or upon its franchise or property; nd for the making, by every such corporation (at the time of paying such nnual registration fee). of such report to the State Corporation Commission, f the status, business or condition of such corporation, as the General Assembly ay prescribe. No foreign corporation shall have authority to do business in is State until it shall have first obtained from the commission a license to o business in this State, upon such terms and conditions as may be prescribed y law. The failure by any corporation for two successive years to pay its nnual registration fee, or to make its said annual reports, shall, when such ilure shall have continued for ninety days after the expiration of such two ears, operate as a revocation and annulment of the charter of such corpora

7 There is no sub-section “(j)” in the original rolls of the constitution.

tion, if it be a domestic company, or, of its license to do business in this State if it be a foreign company; and the General Assembly shall provide addition and suitable penalties for the failure of any corporation to comply prompty with the requirements of this section, or of any laws passed in pursuance there of. The commission shall compel all corporations to comply promptly with such requirements, by enforcing, in the manner hereinbefore authorized, such fü and penalties against the delinquent company as may be provided for, or autheized by, this article; but the General Assembly may relieve from the payment of the said registration fee any purely charitable institution or institutions.

SEC. 158. Every corporation heretofore chartered in this State, which stil hereafter accept, or effect, any amendment or extension of its charter, shall be conclusively presumed to have thereby surrendered every exemption from tax tion, and every non-repealable feature of its charter and of the amendments thereof, and also all exclusive rights or privileges theretofore granted to it by the General Assembly and not enjoyed by other corporations of a simile general character; and to have thereby agreed to thereafter hold its charter al franchises, and all amendments thereof, under the provisions and subject » all the requirements, terms and conditions, of this Constitution and of ag laws passed in pursuance thereof, so far as the same may be applicable such corporation.


[ocr errors]

SEC. 159. The exercise of the right of eminent domain shall never e abridged, nor so construed as to prevent the General Assembly from taking th property and franchises of corporations and subjecting them to public use, de same as the property of individuals, and the exercise of the police power of te State shall never be abridged, nor so construed as to permit corporations t conduct their business in such manner as to infringe the equal rights of dividuals or the general well-being of the State.

SEC. 160. No transportation or transmission company shall charge of ceive any greater compensation, in the aggregate, for transporting the same class of passengers or property, or for transmitting the same class of ne sages, over a shorter than over a longer distance, along the same line and a the same direction--the shorter being included in the longer distance; but this section shall not be construed as authorizing any such company to charge it. receive as great compensation for a shorter as for a longer distance. The Stan Corporation Conmmission nay, from time to time, authorize any such company to disregard the foregoing provisions of this section, by charging such res as the commission may prescribe as just and equitable between such company and the public, to or from any junctional or competitive points or localities, where the competition of points located without this State may make necessary the prescribing of special rates for the protection of the commerce of this State: but this section shall not apply to mileage tickets, or to any special excursit. or commutation rates, or to special rates for services rendered to the gove ment of this State, or of the United States, or in the interest of some puber object, when such tickets or rates shall have been prescribed or authorized i the commission.

[ocr errors]

SEC. 161. No transportation or transmission company doing business in this State shall grant to any member of the General Assembly, or to any State county, district or municipal officer, except to members and officers of the Shie Corporation Commission for their personal use while in office, any frank, free pass, free transportation, or any rebate or reduction in the rates charged l such company to the general public for like services. For violation of the pr visions of this section the offending company shall be liable to such penalties s may be prescribed by law; and any member of the General Assembly, or any such officer, who shall, while in office, accept any gift, privilege or beuent as is prohibited by this section, shall thereby forfeit his office, and be subject such further penalties as may be prescribed by law; but this section sball 20 prevent a street railway company from transporting free of charge any member of the police force or fire department while in the discharge of his official duties. nor prohibit the acceptance by any such policeman or fireman of such free transportation

[merged small][ocr errors]
« ПредыдущаяПродолжить »