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of section 87 of the act of January 12, 1895, for the reasons stated. So far as I am aware, this has also been the view of the other departments. This practical interpretation of the law should, I think, be regarded as conclusive, especially as it appears to be founded upon the reasons of economy which underlie all the supply statutes.

If, therefore, any articles, like those mentioned, have been properly scheduled by the general supply committee, acting under authority of section 4 of the act of June 17, 1910, the Public Printer is required by that act to purchase such articles from that schedule for the use of his own establishment, so far as it is necessary for him to purchase them at all, like any other department or establishment of the Government, and the provisions of law relating to his establishment, if inconsistent therewith, must be regarded as modified to this extent. This was so held, in substance, in the opinion rendered the Secretary of the Treasury on July 25, 1910 (28 Op. 380, 383), although that opinion dealt particularly with the Bureau of Engraving and Printing. The Public Printer would not, however, be required to purchase such articles from said schedule for other departments or establishments of the Government, because the other departments and establishments would order them through the Secretary of the Treasury and the general supply committee, as provided by the act of June 17, 1910, and not through him. In other words, with any “product of bindery operations,” properly scheduled by the general supply committee, the Public Printer is concerned only in so far as respects the needs of his own establishment.

2. The second question propounded by the Public Printer should, I think, be answered in the negative. Section 1 of the act of June 28, 1902 (32 Stat. 481), quoted in the letter of the Public Printer, merely authorizes the Public Printer, on the requisition of the head of any executive department or other government establishment, to procure and supply the articles therein referred to. This provision must be construed in the light of section 51 of the act of January 12, 1895, which provides that "the forms and style in which the printing or binding ordered by any of the departments shall be executed, and the material and the size of type to be used, shall be determined by the Public Printer, having proper regard to economy, workmanship, and the purposes for which the work is needed.” If the article referred to in this question is of the character required by section 87 of the act of January 12, 1895, to be "done” at the Government Printing Office, as that section has hereinbefore been interpreted, I think the Public Printer is vested by the act of January 12, 1895, with such discretion as to how the work shall be executed as to preclude the idea that there is any peremptory duty resting upon him under the act of June 28, 1902, “to supply a specifically described patented binding device on the requisition of an allottee of the appropriation for public printing and binding, when in the Public Printer's discretion an article of different character is more in the interest of economy, uniformity, and better adapted to the needs of the service." Respectfully,



LECTION BY STATE. The right of the State of Idaho to make lieu selections of public lands

pursuant to proceedings taken and a survey had under the act of August 18, 1894 (28 Stat. 394), was defeated by the President's proclamation setting aside the lands in question as part of a forest reservation (34 Stat. 3058), such proclamation having been promulgated after the filing of the State's application for survey but before the filing of any

list of selections on its behalf. The application of the State was not a “flling” within the meaning of

that clause of the proclamation which purports, on certain conditions, to except from its operation, “All lands which may have been, prior to the date hereof, * * covered by any lawful filing duly of record

in the proper United States Land Office." Notwithstanding the State's application for a survey the lands in question

remained “public lands” within the meaning of section 24 of the act of March 3, 1891 (26 Stat. 1103), empowering the President to set apart

“public lands” as forest reservations. Opinion of September 15, 1907 (27 Op. 605), affirmed and extended.


January 30, 1911. Sir: By my opinion of September 15, 1909 (27 Op. 605), you were advised that certain lieu selections of public land


attempted by the State of Idaho pursuant to its application for survey made under the act of August 18, 1894 (28 Stat. 394), were defeated by a proclamation of the President, promulgated after the application but before the survey and selection, and including the lands in question within the limits of the Saw Tooth (now Boise) National Forest (34 Stat. 3058). The details of the various proceedings taken, as well as the statutory provisions involved, were set forth fully in the opinion and need not be here repeated. I there held, in substance, first, that the State's application was not a "filing" within the meaning of the exception in the proclamation, and second, that the steps which had already been taken by the State when the proclamation was issued fell short of creating any vested right as against the United States. Thereupon you rendered a decision adverse to the selections (38 L. D. 219). As appears by correspondence since addressed by you to me, the attorney-general of Idaho, at a further hearing allowed by your office, has again urged that the selections should be approved for reasons which, he strongly insists, have not heretofore been given due consideration, in view of which you inquire whether I desire to adhere to my opinion.

The main argument of the State, as revealed by the briefs transmitted by you, is twofold. First, it is contended, contrary to the conclusion reached in my former opinion, that it was not the intention of the proclamation to abridge or destroy any opportunity which the State might otherwise have enjoyed to select or acquire, after survey, any of the lands described in its application.

The other and more important contention is to the effect that a contrary purpose, if entertained by the President, would be violative of the law.

The first proposition is based upon the concluding portion of the proclamation, which reads as follows:

"Excepting from the force and effect of this proclamation all lands which may have been, prior to the date hereof, embraced in any legal entry or covered by any lawful filing duly of record in the proper United States Land Oflice, or upon which any valid settlement has been made pursuant to law, and the statutory period within which to make entry or filing of record has not expired: Provided, that this exception shall not continue to apply to any particular tract of land unless the entryman, settler or claimant continues to comply with the law under which the entry, filing or settlement was made."

The contention here is that the State's application for survey was “a lawful filing duly of record in the proper United States Land Office," and was therefore protected by this saving clause. Of course the application, having been filed pursuant to law in a public office, may be spoken of in a generic way as a "filing." That, however, is not the sense in which the term is used in the proclamation. In relation to public land matters the word "file" has acquired a definite and well understood meaning of a more narrow scope, denoting the act of lodging with the land-office officials some instrument accompanying and declaring a claim to a definite parcel of land. Thus it is common to say that a claimant has filed on a quarter section of land under the homestead law, referring to the initial homestead application which first manifests of record the existence of his claim to that particular tract. So of applications for specific parcels under other laws. The pervading idea derives its character from the purpose and effect rather than the physical act of filing the instrument. In the usual and generic sense, the term “filing” denotes the act alone and carries not even a suggestion of its purpose or legal significance. The special meaning grew out of the constant association of the act of filing with the making of claims to specific parcels of land under the general land laws. In construing the proclamation it is the fair, and, indeed, the only safe course, to assume that this word, being found in a connection which precludes the generic meaning, was used as it had theretofore been used in its special applications, and with reference to the sort of claims and land-office proceedings out of which its peculiar meaning was derived. To hold that a mere application for a survey under the act of 1894 is a "filing"

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upon all of the region described in that application would stretch the meaning of the term far beyond its previous conception and would tend toward the destruction of the special meaning entirely. I do not believe that any one would contend otherwise if the application were directed solely to the procurement of a survey. It is the preferen

. tial right of selection arising with the application which alone lends color to the effort to characterize it as a 'filing.” But that is essentially a right to forestall new claims of others until the sections shall have been identified and the State shall have had its opportunity to examine them, satisfy itself in regard to their value, and applicability to its grants, and thereupon make such selections as it may deem advisable. It does not carry with it any obligation to make any selection, nor any presumption that any of the sections when ascertained will prove to be free from prior claims, or of the character of land which the State is authorized to select. Some or all of the lands may turn out to be mineral lands. Some or all may have been previously settled upon or otherwise appropriated. Yet the application for survey will have covered all of them, those which lie beyond the reach of the State as well as those which when identified it may lawfully acquire should it choose to do so. In no proper sense, therefore, can the State be said to make a claim to the land described, or any part of it, prior to actual selection of specific tracts. Then the list embodying such selections, when filed with the land officers, would doubtless constitute such a "filing' as the proclamation intends.

The conclusion here reached is fortified by the associations of the word “filing" in the proclamation. “Entry" and "settlement” import rights or claims to designated parcels. “Filing,” where it occurs the second time, plainly refers to claims based on settlement. And the proviso, that the exception shall not continue to apply to any particular tract of land, unless the entryman, settler, or claimant continues to comply with the law under which the filing or settlement was made," would appear to place the matter beyond controversy.


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