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en of the county courts created by this article until, otherwise provided by w. And, until otherwise provided by law, such clerk as is mentioned in the venty-sixth section of this article, shall exercise any powers and discharge any ties heretofore conferred on, or required of, any court or tribunal estabshed for judicial purposes under the said article and section of the constitution one thousand eight hundred and seventy-two, or the clerk of such court or ibunal respectively, respecting the recording and preservation of deeds and her papers presented for record, matters of probate, the appointment and alification of personal representatives, guardians, committees, curators and e settlement of their accounts, and in all matters relating to apprentices. SEC. 25. All actions, suits and proceedings not embraced in the next preing section, pending in a county court when this article takes effect, tother with the records and papers pertaining thereto, as well as all records ad papers pertaining to such actions, suits and proceedings, as have already en disposed of by said courts, shall be transmitted to and filed with the clerk I the circuit court of the county to which office all process outstanding at the me this article goes into operation shall be returned; and said clerk shall have e same power and shall perform the same duties in relation to such records, pers and proceedings as were vested in and required of the county court on e day before this article shall take effect. All such actions, suits and proedings so pending as aforesaid, shall be docketed, proceeded in, tried, heard nd determined in all respects by the circuit court, as if such suits and proceedgs had originated in said court.
SEC. 26. The voters of each county shall elect a clerk of the county court. hose term of office shall be six years. His duties and compensation and the anner of his removal shall be prescribed by law. But the clerks of said courts, ow in office, shall remain therein for the term for which they have been elected, less sooner removed therefrom, in the manner prescribed by law.
SEC. 27. Each county shall be laid off into districts, not less than three nor ore than ten in number, and as nearly equal as may be in territory and pulation. There shall be elected in each district containing a population ot exceeding twelve hundred, one justice of the peace, and if the population ceeds that number, two justices shall be elected therein. Every justice shall side in the district for which he was elected and hold his office for the term 7 four years, unless sooner removed in the manner prescribed by law. The stricts as they now exist shall remain till changed by the county court.
SEC. 28. The civil jurisdiction of a justice of the peace shall extend to tions of assumpsit, debt, detinue and trover, if the amount claimed, exclusive interest, does not exceed three hundred dollars. The jurisdiction of justices the peace shall extend throughout their county; they shall be conservators of e peace and have such jurisdiction and powers in criminal cases as may be escribed by law. And justices of the peace shall have authority to take the knowledgment of deeds and other writings, administer oaths, and take and rtify depositions. And the Legislature may give to justices such additional vil jurisdiction and powers within their respective counties as may be deemed pedient, under such regulations and restrictions as may be prescribed by genal law, except that in suits to recover money or damages their jurisdiction al powers shall in no case exceed three hundred dollars. Appeals shall be lowed from judgments of justices of the peace in such manner as may be rescribed by law.
SEC. 29. The Legislature shall, upon the application of any county, reform, ter or modify the county court established by this article in such county, and lieu thereof, with the assent of a majority of the voters of such county voting an election, create another tribunal for the transaction of the business reuired to be performed by the county court created by this article; and in such se all the provisions of this article in relation to the county court shall be pplicable to the tribunal established in lieu of said court. And when such ibunal has been established it shall continue to act in lieu of the county court til otherwise provided by law.
SEC. 30. The office of commissioner and justice of the peace shall be
deemed incompatible. Vacancies in the office of commissioner, clerk of the county court and justices of the peace shall be filled by the county court of the county until the next general election.
SECTION 1. The voters of each county shall elect a surveyor of lands, a prosecuting attorney, a sheriff, and one and not more than two assessors, who shall hold their respective offices for the term of four years.
SEC. 2. There shall also be elected in each district of the county, by the voters thereof, one constable, and if the population of any district shall exceed twelve hundred, an additional constable, whose term of office shall be for years, and whose powers as such shall extend throughout their county. The assessor shall, with the advice and consent of the county court have the power to appoint one or more assistants, Coroners, overseers of the poor and su: veyors of roads shall be appointed by the county court. The foregoing officers, except the prosecuting attorney, shall reside in the county and district for whic they shall be respectively elected.
SEC. 3. The same person shall not be elected sheriff for two consecutive full terms; nor shall any person who acted as his deputy be elected success to such sheriff, nor shall any sheriff act as deputy of his successor; nor sha he during his term of service, or within one year thereafter, be eligible to any other office. The retiring sheriff shall finish all business remaining in his hands, at the expiration of his term; for which purpose his commission and offici:“ bond shall remain in force. The duties of the office of sheriff shall be performe by him in person, or under his superintendence.
SEC. 4. The presidents of the county courts, the justices of the peac sheriffs, prosecuting attorneys, clerks of the circuit and of the county courts and all other county officers, shall be subject to indictment for malfeasan misfeasance, or neglect of official duty, and upon conviction thereof their offer shall become vacant.
SEC. 5. The Legislature' shall provide for commissioning such of the of cers herein mentioned, as it may deem proper, not provided for in this Co stitution, and may require any class of them to give bond with security fo the faithful discharge of the duties of their respective offices.
SEC. 6. It shall further provide for the compensation, the duties and sponsibilities of such officers, and may provide for the appointment of the deputies and assistants by general law.
SEC. 7. The president of the county court and every justice and constra shall be a conservator of the peace throughout his county.
SFC. S. No new county shall hereafter be formed in this State with 27 area of less than four hundred square miles; nor with a population of es than six thousand; nor shall any county, from which a new county, or ps thereof, shall be taken. be reduced in area below four hundred square miles nor in population below six thousand. Nor shall a new county be forme without the consent of a majority of the voters residing within the boundies of the proposed new county, and voting on the question.
TAXATION AND FINANCE,
SECTION 1. Taxation shall be equal and uniform throughout the S and all property, both real and personal, shall be taxed in proportion to value, to be ascertained as directed by law. No one species of property, fr which a tax may be collected, shall be taxed higher than any other species of property of equal value; but property used for educational, literary, scienti religious or charitable purposes; all cemeteries and public property may, 15 law, be exempted from taxation. The Legislature shall have power to te by uniform and equal laws, all privileges and franchises of persons and porations
SEC. 2. The Legislature shall levy an annual capitation tax of one dollar pon each male inhabitant of the State who has attained the age of twenty-one ears, which shall be annually appropriated to the support of free schools. Persons afflicted with bodily infirmity may be exempted from this tax.
SEC. 3. No money shall be drawn from the treasury but in pursuance of n appropriation made by law, and on a warrant issued thereon by the Auditor; or shall any money or fund be taken for any other purpose than that for which it has been or may be appropriated, or provided. A complete and detailed tatement of the receipts and expenditures of the public moneys, shall be pubshed annually.
SEC. 4. No debt shall be contracted by this State, except to meet casual eficits in the revenue, to redeem a previous liability of the State, to suppress nsurrection, repel invasion or defend the State in time of war; but the payent of any liability other than that for the ordinary expenses of the State, hall be equally distributed over a period of at least twenty years.
SEC. 5. The power of taxation of the Legislature shall extend to proisions for the payment of the State debt, and interest thereon, the support of ree schools, and the payment of the annual estimated expenses of the State; ut whenever any deficiency in the revenue shall exist in any year, it shall, at he regular session thereof held next after the deficiency occurs levy a tax. or the ensuing year, sufficient with other sources of income to meet such eficiency, as well as the estimated expenses of such year.
SEC. 6. The credit of the State shall not be granted to, or in aid of any ounty, city, township, corporation or person; nor shall the State ever assume, r become responsible for the debts or liabilities of any county, city, township, orporation or person; nor shall the State ever hereafter become a joint owner, r stockholder in any company or association in this State or elsewhere, formed or any purpose whatever.
SEC. 7. County authorities shall never assess taxes, in any one year, the ggregate of which shall exceed ninety-five cents per one hundred dollars valuajon; except for the, support of free, schools; payment of indebtedness existing t'the time of the adoption of this Constitution, and for the payment of any debtedness with the interest thereon, created under the succeeding section, nless such assessment, with all questious involving the increase of such aggreate shall have been submitted to the vote of the people of the county, and ave received three-fifths of all the votes cast for and against it.
SEC. S. No county, city, school district, or municipal corporation, except a cases where such corporations have already authorized their bonds to be sued, shall hereafter be allowed to become indebted, in any manner, or for ny purpose, to an amount, including existing indebtedness, in the aggregate, xceeding five per centum on the value of the taxable property therein to be scertained by the last assessment for State and county taxes, previous to the curring of such indebtedness; nor without, at the same time, providing for the ollection of a direct annual tax, sufficient to pay, annually, the interest on uch debt, and the principal thereof, within, and not exceeding thirty-four years; rovided, That no debt shall be contracted under this section, unless all quesions connected with the same shall have been first submitted to a vote of the eople, and, have received three-fifths of all the votes cast for and against the
SEC. 9. The Legislature may, by law, authorize the corporate authorities of ities, towns and villages, for corporate purposes, to assess and collect taxes; ut such taxes shall be uniform, with respect to persons and property within he jurisdiction of the authority imposing the same.
SECTION 1. The Legislature shall provide for the organization of all cororations hereafter to be created, by general laws, uniform as to the class to which they relate, but no corporation shall be created by special law; Pro
vided. That nothing in this section contained, shall prevent the Legislature`from providing by special laws for the connection, by canal, of the waters of the Chesapeake with the Ohio river by the line of the James river, Greenbrier, New river and Great Kanawha.
" SEC. 2.
The stockholders of all corporations and joint stock companies. except banks and banking institutions, created by laws of this State, shall be liable for the indebtedness of such corporations to the amount of their stock subscribed and unpaid, and no more.
SEC. 3. All existing charters or grants of special or exclusive privileges under which organization shall not have taken place, or which shall not have been in operation within two years from the time this Constitution takes effect. shall thereafter have no validity or effect whatever; Provided, That nothing herein shall prevent the execution of any bona fide contract heretofore lawfully made in relation to any existing charter or grant in this State.
SEC. 4. The Legislature shall provide by law that in all elections for directors or managers of incorporated companies, every stockholder shall have the right to vote in person or by proxy, for the number of shares of stock owned by him, for as many persons as there are directors or managers to be elected, or to cumulate said shares, and give one candidate as many votes as the number of directors multiplied by the number of his shares of stock, shal equal, or to distribute them on the same principle among as many candidates as he shall think fit, and such directors or managers shall not be elected in ak other manner.
SEC. 5. No law shall be passed by the Legislature, granting the right *« evnstruct and operate a street railroad within any city, town or incorporated village, without requiring the consent of the local authorities having the c trol of the street or highway, proposed to be occupied by such street railroad,
SEC. 6. The Legislature may provide; by general banking law, for the cre ation and organization of banks of issue or circulation, but the stockholders of any bank hereafter authorized by the laws of this State, whether of issu deposit or discount, shall be personally liable to the creditors thereof, over au! above the amount of stock held by them respectively to an amount equal t their respective shares so held, for all its liabilities accrning while they ar such stockholders.
SEC. 7. Every railroad corporation organized or doing business in tls State shall annually by their proper officers, make a report under oath, to tr auditor of public accounts of this State, or some officer to be designated ↳ law, setting forth the condition of their affairs, the operations of the year. and such other matters relating to their respective railroads as may be pre scribed by law. The Legislature shall pass laws enforcing by suitable penalties the provisions of this section.
SEC. 8. The rolling stock and all other movable property belonging to any railroad company or corporation in this State shall be considered person property and shall be liable to execution and sale in the same manner as the personal property of individuals; and the Legislature shall pass no law exempliing any such property from execution and sale.
Railroads heretofore constructed, or that may hereafter be co structed in this State, are hereby declared public highways and shall be free all persons for the transportation of their persons and property there," under such regulations as shall be prescribed by law; and the Legislature shall, from time to time, pass laws, applicable to all railroad corporations in the State establishing reasonable maximum rates of charges for the transportation of passengers and freight, and providing for the correction of abuses, the preven tion of unjust discriminations between through and local or way freight and pas senger tariffs, and for the protection of the just rights of the public, and shal enforce such laws by adequate penalties.
SEC. 10. The Legislature shall, in the law regulating railway companies.
quire railroads running through, or within a half mile of a town or village ontaining three hundred or more inhabitants, to establish stations for the commodation of trade and travel of said town or village.
SEC. 11. No railroad corporation shall consolidate its stock, property or ranchise with any other railroad owning a parallel or competing line, or obtain he possession or control of such parallel or competing line by lease or other ontract, without the permission of the Legislature.
SEC. 12. The exercise of the power and the right of eminent domain shall ever be so construed or abridged as to prevent the taking, by the Legislature, of the property and franchises of incorporated companies already organized, and subjecting them to the public use, the same as of individuals.
SECTION 1. The Legislature shall provide, by general law, for a thorough and efficient system of free schools.
SEC. 2. The State Superintendent of Free Schools shall have a general supervision of free schools, and perform such other duties in relation thereto as may be prescribed by law. If in the performance of any such duty imposet upon him by the Legislature he shall incur any expenses, he shall be reimbursed therefor; Provided, the amount does not exceed five hundred dollars in any one year.
SEC. 3. The Legislature may provide for county superintendents and such other officers as may be necessary to carry out the objects of this article and define their duties, powers and compensation.
SEC. 4. The existing permanent and invested school fund, and all money accruing to this State from forfeited, delinquent, waste and unappropriated lands; and from lands heretofore sold for taxes and purchased by the State of Virginia. if hereafter redeemed or sold to others than this State; all grants. devises or bequests that may be made to this State, for the purposes of education or where the purposes of such grants, devises or bequests are not specified; this State's just share of the literary fund of Virginia, whether paid over or otherwise liquidated; and any sums of money, stocks or property which this State shall have the right to claim from the State of Virginia for educational purposes; the proceeds of the estates of persons who 'may 'die without leaving a will or heir, and of all escheated lands; the proceeds of any taxes that may be levied on the revenues of any corporations; or moneys that may be paid as an equivalent for exemption from military duty; and such sums as may from time to time be appropriated by the Legislature for the purpose, shall be set apart as a separate fund to be called the "School Fund," and invested under such regulations as may be prescribed by law, in the interest bearing securities of the United States, or of this State, or if such interest bearing securities cannot be obtained, then said "School Fund" shall be invested in such other solvent, interest bearing securities as shall be.ap proved by the Governor, Superintendent of Free Schools, Auditor and Treas urer, who are hereby constituted the "Board of the School Fund," to manage the same under such regulations as, may be prescribed by law; and the interest thereof shall be annually applied to the support of free schools throughout the State, and to no other purpose whatever. But any portion of said interest remaining unexpended at the close of a fiscal year shall be added to and remain a part of the capital of the "School Fund," Provided, That all taxes which shall be received by the State upon delinquent lands, except the taxes due to the State thereon, shall be refunded to the county or district "by or for which the same were levied.19
SEC. 5. The Legislature shall provide for the support of free schools by appropriating thereto the interest of the invested "School Fund," the net proceeds of all forfeitures and fines accruing to this State under the laws thereof:
19 This section is modified by the Irreducible School Fund Amendment [Article XVI], as set forth at the end of the constitution.