George Crane Morehouse.

The supervisors' manual : a practical treatise on the law applicable to the duties of supervisors from the date of their election to the end of their official term; also, the law relative to town bonds, railroad aid bonds, defective roads and bridges, town meetings, assessment and collection of taxe online

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Online LibraryGeorge Crane MorehouseThe supervisors' manual : a practical treatise on the law applicable to the duties of supervisors from the date of their election to the end of their official term; also, the law relative to town bonds, railroad aid bonds, defective roads and bridges, town meetings, assessment and collection of taxe → online text (page 69 of 96)
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1. A chairman, who shall preside at such meeting and in all other
meetings held during the year.

2B. S. 926.


626 Supervisors' Maxual.

In Kings caunty a supervisor at large is elected who is ex officio
chairman of the board, possessing merely a casting vote in case of a

Laws of 1871, chap. 115.

In Erie county. The chairman of the board of supervisors of
Erie county, chosen at the annual meeting thereof, in the year 1885,
and at each annual session thereafter, shall hold his office as such
chairman until the day preceding the first Tuesday in October in
each and every year, for the purpose of filling any vacancies in office
which he is now or may hereafter be authorized to fill; and upon
him as such chairman all legal notices, and processes in any action
or proceeding against said county, or in which said county is inter-
ested, shall be served ; and as such chairman he is hereby authorized
to execute in the name of said board all conveyances of real estate
belonging to said county, in pursuance of any resolution of said
board directing the same ; and as such to accept in behalf of said
board all conveyances of real estate to said county of Erie, when
authorized by said board so to do ; and as such chairman he shall
preside at all special meetings of said board in case he shall be at that
time a member of said board of supervisors of said county, and act-
ing as such.

Laws of 1886, chap. S62, $1.
Albany county, Bee § 536, ante,

§ 781. 2. A Cleric. — The board, as often as may be neces-
sary, shall appoint some proper person to be their clerk, who shall
hold his office during their pleasure.

2R. S. 92r, §9.

The duties of the clerk are prescribed by law, and are given in full hereafter.
Chap. Xni.

§ 782. His Term of Office.— Every officer duly ap-
pointed, except the chancellor, justices of the supreme court and cir-
cuit judges, who shall have duly entered on the duties of his office,8hall
continue to discharge the duties thereof, although his term of office
shall have expired, until a successor in such office shall be duly

IR. S. 865, §9(m. p. 117).

In Erie county he is required to give a bond before entering on
the duties of his office, in the penalty of $10,000, to be approved by
the chairman of the board.

Chap. 231, Laws of 1876, as amended by chap. 195, Laws of 1879.

Oegan-ization of the Board op Supervisoks. 637

Xings county has a special law on this subject.

Chap. 353, Lawaof 18T8.

§783. 3. A Reading Clerk. — Some member is gen-
erally chosen, for convenience, as reading clerk, whose duty it is to
read before the board all resolutions oflEered, reports of committees,
and other communications presented.

§ 784. 4. A JaiUitOZ* is also generally chosen, some person
outside of the board, whose duty it is to attend to and keep the rooms
in order, act as messenger or page at the meetings of the board, etc.

Other officers, at the pleasure of the board, may be appointed,
except where a special statute otherwise prescribes. There are
various local statutes on this subject.

§ 785. Rules of Order.— A code of rules or regulations
is generally adopted before proceeding further. If the former board
had one that is satisfactory, it may be adopted, on motion, or a new
set prepared by a committee.

The board determine this question at their own pleasure.
The board have power, by resolution, to be duly entered on their
minutes of proceedings, and to be published therewith :

" To make rules for the conduct of their proceedings, to compel
the attendance of absent members at meetings of their respective
boards, and for the maintenance of order and decorum at such meet-
ings, and to enforce pecuniary penalties, not exceeding $50 for each
■offense, for the violation of such rules."
See " Codes," nest section but one.

Laws of 1875, chap. 482, § 7, subd. 1.
A rule of the board which is opposed to an express statute is void.
People, CT r«Z. Burroughs, t. Brinkerhoff, 68 N. Y. 259,

Among the rules adopted by the board of supervisors of Westchester county
was one providing that a motion for reconsideration might be made by any mem-
ber, but that no such motion should be in order unless made on the same day or
on the next day following the decision proposed to be reconsidered, unless by
unanimous consent. On January 2, 1874, a, resolution was offered in the board;
appointing one Kinch its librarian. The resolution was amended by inserting
the name of the relator for that of Kinch, and, as so amended, it was adopted.
On January 3, a motion to reconsider this resolution was carried; on January 4,
the resolution was reconsidered and lost; on January 7, » resolution appointing
Kinch librarian was adopted.

Seld, that the board had power to reconsider and rescind the resolution by
which the relator was appointed its librarian, and to thereafter appoint Kinch to
that office.

People, exrel. Birch, r. Mills, 82 Hun, 459.

628 SuPEEVisoKs' Manual.

§ 786. To Determine Cases of Contested
Membersllip.-^ They have authority, by resolution, to be
duly entered on their minutes of proceedings and to be published
therewith :

" To determine, unless the same shall have been determined by
a court having jurisdiction thereof, upon the returns of the proper
certifying oflBcers, and upon such other testimony furnished to them
as would be competent in a court of law, all cases of contested
membership in their respective boards, and, when so determined in
any case, the decision shall be conclusive as to the right of the par-
ties to the contest."

Chap. 482, Laws of 1875, §7, subd. 2.

§ 787. Cannoit Appoint Supervisor to OflBce.

— Where a power of appointment to a public trust or office is con-
ferred upon one or more persons, they cannot appoint one of their
own number. Such an appointment, if made, is void.

People, enrel. Davis, v. Thomas, 33 Barb. 287.

§ 788. Code of Rules. — The following codes of rnles are
in use in different counties :

First Code.

1. Tlie board shall assemble at suc^ times as they may determine at a previous
session, or upon call of tbe chairman; and when so called, shall be at the hours
of ten o'clock, A. M. , and two o'clock and seven o'clock, P. M.

2. The chairman shall preserve order at the sessions and have power to call any
member of the board temporarily to the chair, and shall appoint all committees of
the board, unless otherwise specially ordered.

3. A member desiring to speak or present any subject-matter to the board shall
rise and address the chair, and shall not further proceed until recognized by the
chair, and awarded the floor for such purpose.

4. No debate shall be in order until the pending question shall be stated by the

5. When two or more members arise to speak at the same time, the chair shall
determine which is entitled to the floor.

6. Any member upon being called to order shall take his seat, and shall remain
therein until the board determine the point raised, and if the call shall be sus-
tained, he shall not further proceed except in order, and by permission of the

7. Any resolution which by its terms calls for the appropriation of money for
any specific object or purpose shall be read, for the information of the board, at
least one session prior to its being put upon its passage, upon the request or
motion of any member thereof.

8. Every member who shall be present when any vote upon a question is taken
shall vote upon the same unless excused by the board, or unless he haa a direct
interest in the result thereof.

9. No motion for the reconsideration of the vote upon any question shall be
entertained unless moved by one who voted in the majority upon such question,
nor unless such motion be made within three days (upon which sessions of the
board shall be held) subsequent to such vote having been taken.

10. A motion for the reconsideration of any question having been made and
decided in the negative, no proposition for further reconsideration shall be

Organization of the Boaud of Stjpeevisoes. 629

11 The " previous question " shall be as follows; " Shall the main question be
now put ? " and until it is decided shall preclude all amendments' or debate.

When, on taking the previous question, the board shall decide that the main
question shall not now be put, the main question shall be considered as still
remaining under debate.

The ' ' main question " shall be on the passage of the matter under consideration,
but when amendments are pending, the question shall first be taken upon such
amendments in their order.

13. The ayes and nays shall be taken upon any question on the demand of two
Tuembers, and every member within the railing shall vote when his name is
called, unless excused by the board therefrom.

13. At each session, the business shall be:

1st. Reading the minutes of the last preceding session.

2d. The presentation of petitions and communications.

3d. Reports of committees.

4th. Motions and resolutions.

When a question shall be under consideration, no motion shall be received
«xcept as herein specified, which motions shall have precedence in the following

1. An adjournment, or recess of such session.

3. For the previous question.

3. To lay on the table.

4. To refer to standing committee.

5. To refer to select committee.

6. To amend.

(The first three motions are neither amendaiU nor debatable.}

14. All resolutions offered shall be in writing, and shall be entered at length
upon the journal.

15. The question of concurrence with the report of any auditing committee
shall be laid upon the table until the next succeeding meeting of the board, upon
the request or upon motion of any member of such board.

16. These rules shall not be amended except upon notice of at least one session
of the board previous thereto, and upon a day succeeding such notice; nor shall
they be suspended except in special cases, and then only upon receiving the afBrm-
ative vote of two-thirds of all the members of the board.

§ 789. 1. Second Code.

Upon the appearance of a quorum, the chairman having taken the chair, and
the members being called to order, the minutes of the preceding day must be read,
to the end that any mistake therein may be corrected by the board.

2. Order of Business.

After the minutes are read and approved, the order of business shall be as fol-
lows: '
1. The presentation of petitions.
3. Reports of standing committees.

3. Reports of select committees.

4. Introduction of resolutions, notices and motions.

5. Unfinished business.

• 6. Special orders of the day.

3. Standing Committees.

Standing committees shall consist of three; except the equalization committee,
■which shall consist of nine members, and shall be appointed on the following
subjects, to-wit :

1. Sheriff and jailer.

3. County judge and surrogate.

3. County justices.

630 SuPERvisoEs' Manual.

4. County clerk,

5. Lunatic and other asylums.

6. Loan oflScers and coroners.

7. Capital police.

8. City constables — First assessor district.

9. City constables — Second assessor district.

10. City constables — Third assessor district.

11. Constables of north assembly district.
13. Constables of south assembly district.

13. Miscellaneous accounts.

14. District attorney.

15. House of industry.

16. County treasurer.

17. Finance.

18. Equalization. >

19. Unfinished business.

20. Law committee.

21. County buildings; other than those embraced in the fifth and fifteenth

subdivisions of this rule.

22. Printing.

23. Refundang committee.

24. Military.

And it shall be the duty of each of the several committees to inquire into the
matter indicated by its name, and report thereon to this board as soon as may be,
and at least two days before the last day of the annual meeting, and also any in-
formation and any resolution which it may deem conducive to the public good,

4. Priority of Business.

All q uestions relating to the priority of business, that is, the priority of one
question or subject-matter over another, under the same order of buainesB, shall
be decided without debate.

5. Chairman to Preserve Order.

The chairman to preserve order and decorum, and decide all questions of order,
which decision shall be final, unless an appeal is taken to the board. On an ap-
peal from the decision of the chairman, he shall have the right in his place to as-
sign his reason for his decision. He shall also have the right to substitute any
member to perform the duties of the chairman, but such |,substitution shall not
extend beyond two days, unless by leave of the board.

6. Vote of Cliairman.

When the board is equally divided, including the chairman's vote the question
shall be deemed to be lost.

7. Order.

When the chairman is putting a question, no member shall walk across or Out
of the room.

8. Order of Speaking.

A member rising to debate, to give a notice, to make a motion or report, or to
present a petition or other paper, shall address the chairman, and shall not pro-
ceed further until recognized by Mm.

Orgahization of the Board of Supervisors. 631

9. Members Entitled to Speak.

No member shall speak more than twice, nor more than five minutes to the
same general question, without leave of the board.

10. Order and Silence.

While a member is speaking, no member shall entertain any private discourse,
or pass between him and the chair.

11. Calls to Order.

If any member, in speaking or otherwise, transgresses the rules of the board, the
chairman or aiiy member may call to order, in which case the member so called to
order shall inmiediately sit down, unless permitted to explain.

12. Members Entitled to Vote.

Every member who shall be present when any question is stated from the chair,
shall vote thereon, unless excused by the board, or unless he be directly interested
in the question, in which case he shall not be allowed to vote .

13. Manner of Presenting^ Petitions.

Every member, previous to presenting a petition or memorial, shall indorse on
the same the subject to which it relates, and add his name; the clerk hands his
name to the chairman, who shall state the substance thereof , after which he shall
put the question on the disposition of said petition or memorial.

14. Motions and Resolutions.

Every motion or resolution shall be first stated by the chairman, or read by the
clerk before debate, and immediately before the question is put; and every such
motion, except of the class of motions embraced in rule 18, shall be reduced to
writing, if the chairman or any member desire it.

15. Witbdra-wal of Motion.

After a motion is stated by the chairman, it shall be deemed to be in the pos-
session of the house, but may be withdrawn at any time before a decision is made
or an amendment adopted.

16. Divisions of Questions.

If the question in debate contains several distinct propositions, the same shall
be divided by the chair at the request of any member, to the end that a vote may
be taken on each proposition; but a motion to strike out and insert shall be
deemed indivisible.

17. Filling Blanks.

When a blank is to be filled, and different sums or times are proposed, the
question shall first be put on the largest sum and longest time.

633 SuPBKTisoKs' Manual.

18. Motions, TVlien Receivable.

When a question is under debate, no motion shall be entertained, unless for an
adjournment of the board, for the previous question, to postpone indefinitely, to
postpone to a certain day, to lay it on the table, to commit it, to amend it; these
several motions shall have precedence in the order in which they are here stated.

19. A motion to lay a question on the table shall be decided without amendment
or debate, and a motion to postpone a question indefinitely, or to adjourn to a day
certain, until it is decided, shall preclude all amendment of the main question.

20. Previous Question.

The "previous question" shall be as follows: "Shall the main question now
be put?" and, until it is decided, shall preclude all amendment and debate.
When, on taking the previous question, the board shall decide that the question
shall not now be put, the main question shall be considered as still remaining un-
der debate. The main question .shall be on the passage of the resolution or other
matter under consideration.

21. Adjournment.

A motion to adjourn the board shall always be in order, and decided without

22. Entries on Minutes.

In all cases where a resolution or motion shall be entered on the minutes, the
clerk shall also enter the name of the moving member.

23. Committee of tlie Tliriiole.

In forming a committee of the whole board, the chairman shall leave the chair,
and appoint a chairman to preside.

24. Rules for tliat Committee.

' The rules of the board shall be observed in the committee of the whole, so far
as they may be applicable, except limiting the number of times of speaking, and
except that the ayes and noes shall not be taken, and except, also, that a motion
to rise and report progress shall always be in order, and shall be decided without

25. Motions to Reconsider.

No motion for reconsideration, except by unanimous consent, shall be in order,
unless on the same day, or on one of the three days of session following that on
which the decision proposed to be reconsidered took place, nor unless one of the
majority shall move such reconsideration; and a motion for reconsideration, being
put and lost, shall not be renewed; nor shall any vote be a second time reconsid-
ered without unanimous consent.

26. Altering" Rules.

No standing rule or order of this board shall be rescinded, suspended or changed,
nor any rule or order added thereto, unless it be by unanimous consent, or with-
out one day's notice being given of the motion therefor; and such notice shall in
all cases state specifically we object of the suspension.

Okganization of the Boaed of Supbevisoes. 633

2t. Excuse from Voting.

Every member requesting to be excused from voting may make a brief and ver-
bal statement of the reason for making such request, and the question shall be
taken without further debate.

28. The chairman shall, with the concurrence of the board, appoint all commit-
tees except where the board shall otherwise order.

29. Committees, on making reports, shall return to the clerk all the papers re-
lating thereto.

30. All reports of committees may be read by the members making them, when
called in their order, and then be presented to the board; but the board may dis-
pense with the reading thereof.

31. All reports of standing committees on the auditing of accounts and the report
of the equalizing committee shall lie over one day at least before being acted upon.

33. All reports, resolutions and other matters laid on the table may be called
therefrom under subdivision four of rule second, in the order of business.

The " first '' set of rules have been found suflBcient for all practical

§ 790. Conmiittees. — The standing committees are ap-
pointed as the rules prescribe by the chairman or the board.

§ 791. Who is Chairiuan of Committee —
Riglit of Members of Committee to Elect
Tlieir Clia>irmaill. — The first member named on a committee
is their chairman (in his absence the next named member becomes
chairman, and so on), and should act as such unless the committee,
hy a majority of their number, elect another chairman, which they
are competent to do.

Roberta' Bales of Order, § 28; Cushing's MaiAial, § 273.

His right to act as chairman is a matter of covHesy merely.

The chairman of the committee is to call the committee together,
Ibut it is the duty of a committee to meet on the call of any two
of its members, if the chairman be absent or decline to appoint such
meeting. A quorum consists of a majority of the members of the
committee. The rules of the board, as far as possible, apply to a com-
mittee ; but a reconsideration of a vote is allowed, regardless of the
time elapsed, only when every member who voted with the majority
is present when the reconsideration is moved. It may appoint a
sub-committee. ISo allusion should be made in the board to what
has occurred in committee, except it be by a report of a committee,
or by general consent. It is a miniature board, that must meet
together in order to transact business, and usually one of its mem-
bers should be appointed clerk.

Roberts' Bales of Order, § 28.

634 SuPEfiTisoRs' Makual.

The board has a right to name the time and place for a committee
to meet, and it cannot regularly sit at any other time or place, and
it may be ordered to sit immediately whilst the board is sitting and
make its report forthwith.

Cushiug's Manual, 8 274.

When no directions are given by the board, it may select its own
time and place to meet, and adjourn when it pleases.

Id., 215-1.

The final decision or suggestions of a committee should be em-
bodied in a resolution, and is usually placed at the conclusion of its
report. The reasons for this are stated at section 648, ante.

§ 792. Standings Committees.— The practice varies
in different counties. Some use the following :


1. On form of assessmeut-rolls.
3. On footing of assessment-rolls.

3. On accounts in the department of the sheriff.

4. On accounts of justices and constables.

5. On miscellaneous accounts.

6. On accounts connected with coroners' inquest, etc.

7. On printing and stationery.

8. On accounts connected with the county buildings.

9. On accounts connected with the support of the poor.

10. On accounts of supervisors as such.

11. On erroneous assessments.

12. On erroneous taxes.

13. On military affairs.

14. On uncollected resident, school and highway taxes.

15. On roads and bridges.

16. On judiciary.

17. On legislation.

18. On State loans.

19. On settlement with county treasurer.

30. On interment of deceased soldiers and sailors.

31. On incorporated companies.
38. On State lunatic asylum.
33. On grand jury lists.

24. On orphan asylums.

25. On ratio and apportionment of taxes.

26. On rejected taxes.

27. On equalization.

'When Not to Act on Committees.— Ko supervisor
should act as a member of any standing committee of the board of
supervisors having at the time under consideration any bill in which
such supervisor shall be pecuniarily interested.



Sbc. Y93. Forms. Sbo. 796. Resolution to divide town and erect

794. Authorizing survey of highway a new town.

and tnaking records thereof. 797 . To authorize town meetings to be

795. Authorizing town to borrow held by election districts .

money . 798 . Declaration of vote by chairman .


Sbo.799. Apportioning the taxes. Sec. 801. Ratio and apportionment table,

800. Summary. 802. Directions for preparing the sched-



§ T93. Forms. — The following forms are believed to fully
comply with the requirements of Laws of 1875, chap, 482.

1. For Bonding'.


A RESOLUTION to Borrow $14,000 on the credit of the county, by the Title and
issue of County Bonds therefor, and to Authorize the County Treasurer statement,
to issue and negotiate said bonds for the purpose of Altering and Improv-
ing the County House at Rome, N. Y., passed in pursuance of the pro-
visions of chapter 482, of the Laws of 1875, and its amendments, a Major-
ity of all the Supervisors Elected to the Board voting in favor thereof.

Resolved, That the funds wherewith to alter and improve the county EesoIu»
house at Rome, be realized from bonds issued by said county, and bearing ''°°s-
interest at 4 per cent per annum, in manner following:

Series No. 1. "For the altering and improving the county house," four
thousand dollars, to mature March 1, 1887, payable at the office of the
county treasurer.

Series No. 3. "For the altering and improving the county house,' five
thousand dollars, to mature March 1, 1888, payable at the office of the
county treasurer.

Series No. 3. "For the altering and improving the county house," five
thousand dollars, to mature March 1, 1889, payable at the office of the
county treasurer.

Resolved, That the county treasurer be and he is hereby authorized
and directed to issue and negotiate said bonds, according to law and not
less than the par value thereof, and to the best advantage, and apply the
proceeds thereof in payment of the expenses of said alteration and im-

Online LibraryGeorge Crane MorehouseThe supervisors' manual : a practical treatise on the law applicable to the duties of supervisors from the date of their election to the end of their official term; also, the law relative to town bonds, railroad aid bonds, defective roads and bridges, town meetings, assessment and collection of taxe → online text (page 69 of 96)