Page images

Sec. 7. The mayor and councilmen, when elected and qualified as hereinafter provided, shall have, possess and exercise corporate powers as a body politice by the name of "The City of Charleston," and shall have perpetual succession and a common seal, and by that name may sue and be sued, implead and be impleaded, and may purchase and hold or sell real estate and personal property necessary to enable them to discharge its corporate duties, or needful or convenient for the good order, government and wellfare of said corporation.

Sec. 8. The municipal authorities of said city acting under the powers and in the manner herein specified, shall have and are hereby granted power to have said city resurveyed; to open, vacate, broaden, widen and repair streets and alleys, to curb and pave streets, sidewalks and gutters for public use, and to alter, improve and light the same, and construct and maintain public sewers and laterals, and shall in all cases have power and authority to assess upon and collect from the property benefitted thereby such part of the expense thereof as shall be fixed by ordinance except as hereinafter provided; to have control of all streets, avenues, roads and alleys for public use in said city, and to have the same kept in good order and free from obstruction on or over them; to have the right to control all bridges within said city, and the traffic passing thereover; to regulate and determine the width. of streets, sidewalks, roads and alleys; to order and direct the curbing and paving of sidewalks and footways for public use in said city to be done and kept in good order by the owners of adjacent property; to enter into a contract with any internal improvement company for the joint ownership of any bridge by the city and said company, upon such terms as may be prescribed in the contract, but such bridge shall be a public highway, and the interest of such company shall be only such proportionate part thereof as it may pay for; to control the construction and repair of all houses, bridges, culverts and sewers, and to prescribe and enforce all reasonable regulations affecting the building of all buildings and structures, and to require permits to be obtained for such buildings and plans and specifications thereof to be first submitted to a city architect or building inspector, and to prescribe and enforce regulations controlling the erection of such buildings and to secure the safety and health of the public; to control the opening and construction of ditches, drains, sewers,

cesspools and gutters; to deepen, widen and clear the same of stagnant water or filth, and to determine at whose expense the same shall be done; to build and maintain station houses, police stations and police courts and regulate the management thereof; to purchase, lay off, appropriate and control public grounds, squares or parks, either within or without the city limits as hereinafter defined, and, when council determines that any real estate is necessary to be acquired by said city for any such purposes, or for any public purpose, the power of eminent domain is hereby conferred upon said city and it shall have the right to institute condemnation proceedings against the owners thereof in the same manner, to the same extent and upon the same conditions as such power is conferred upon public corporations by chapter forty-two of the code of West Virginia of the edition of one thousand nine hundred and six; to provide, contract for and take care of all public buildings and structures deemed proper for the use of such city; to provide for the regular building of houses or other structures, and to determine the distance that they shall be built from any street or alley; to cause the removal of unsafe walls or buildings; to prevent injury or annoyance to the business of individuals from anything dangerous, offensive or unwholesome; to abate or cause to be abated all nuisances; to regulate the keeping of gunpowder and all other combustibles; to provide and maintain proper places for the burial of the dead; to regulate interments therein upon such terms and conditions as to price and otherwise as may be determined; to provide for shade and ornamental trees and the protection of the same; to provide for the making of division fences and for draining of lots by proper drains and ditches; to make proper regulation for guarding against danger or damage from fires; to provide for the poor of the city; to organize and maintain fire companies and to provide necessary apparatus, engines and implements for the same; to levy taxes on persons, property, and licenses; to provide revenue for the city and appropriate the same to its expenses; to provide for the valuation of property as often as may be demed proper and the assessment of taxable persons and property; to adopt rules for the transaction of business and for the government and regulation of its corporate bodies; to promote the general welfare of the city and to protect the persons and property of citizens therein; to appoint such officers as they may deem proper, and require and

take from them bonds with such security and in such penalty as may be determined, conditioned for faithful discharge of their duties; to regulate and provide for the weighing of produce and other articles sold in said city and to regulate the transportation thereof through the streets; to establish and regulate markets; to prescribe the time for holding the same and what shall be sold only in such market and to acquire and hold property for market purposes if deemed proper; to regulate the placing of signs, billboards, posters, and advertisements in, on, or over the streets, alleys and sidewalks of said city; to preserve and protect the peace, order and health of the city and its inhabitants; to appoint and fix the places of holding city elections; to erect, own, lease, regulate, authorize or prohibit the erection of gas works, electric light works or water works in or near the city and to operate the same, and sell the products thereof and to do any and all things necessary and incidental to the conduct of such business; to build, hold, purchase, own and operate toll bridges and free bridges; to provide for the purity of the water and the health of the city; to prescribe and enforce ordinances for the purpose of protecting the health, decency, morality and order of the city and its inhabitants, and to punish violations of such ordinances even if the offenses under and against such ordinances shall also constitute offenses under the laws of the state of West Virginia or the common law; to have and exercise all the rights, privileges and powers provided by chapter forty-seven of the code of West Virginia of the edition of one thousand nine hundred and six, not inconsistent with this act, and shall retain, keep and succeed to all rights, privileges, property, interest, claims and demands heretofore acquired by, vested in or transferred to said city of Charleston.

Sec. 9. To carry into effect these enumerated powers and all other powers conferred upon said city expressly or by implication in this and other acts of the legislature, the municipal authorities of said city shall have power in the manner herein prescribed to adopt and enforce all needful orders, by-laws and ordinances not contrary to the laws and constitution of this state; and to prescribe, impose and enforce reasonable fines and penalties, including imprisonment, and, with the consent of the county court of Kanawha county entered of record, shall have the right to use the jail of said county for any purpose necessary to the administration of its affairs.

Sec. 10. The municipal authorities shall have the right to establish, construct and maintain landings, wharves and docks on any ground which does or shall belong to said city, or which it shall acquire by condemnation proceedings, and to repair, alter, or remove any building or dock which has been or shall be so constructed, and to levy and collect reasonable duty on vessels and other crafts coming to or using same, and to preserve and protect the peace and good order at the same, and regulate the manner in which they shall be used.


Qualification of Voters.

Sec. 11. Every person qualified by law to vote for members of the legislature of the state, and who shall have been a resident of the territory within said city as bounded by this act, at least sixty days preceding the day of election, and of the territory in the ward in which he offers to vote at least ten days, and a bona fide resident of the election precinct in which he offers to vote, shall be entitled to vote at all elections held by the voters of said city or the corporate authorities thereof.

Sec. 12. The council shall by ordinance provide for such regulations for the registration of voters as may be rendered necessary by state laws, but the first election held under this act shall be subject to chapter forty-three of the acts of the legislature of one thousand nine hundred and five.

Except, however, that for the first election held under this act the council shall, in an equitable manner, by a majority vote at its first meeting after this act is passed, appoint two persons in each voting precinct, of opposite political parties, as registrars, who shall register the voters of their respective precincts, using the poll lists of the state election in one thousand nine hundred and six as a basis, so far as practicable. They shall list alphabetically the voters of each precinct, and such lists shall be sent out respectively and delivered to the election commissioners in each preeinet, and this provision shall so far as applicable, be in lieu of and shall supersede all regulations by state law concerning the registration of voters at said first election; but any legal voter, not registered, may register or vote on election day by complying with the provisions of chapter forty-three of the acts of one thousand nine

[ocr errors]

hundred and five. All subsequent elections shall be held in the manner as may now or hereafter be provided by law; notwithstanding the existing law concerning certificates of nomination for office, at the first election held under this act, but if no other nominations may be made, certified and filed and all other duties. of officers and political parties and voters in relation to such nominations, may be done within at least ten days prior to such election.



Sec. 13. The first election under this act shall be held on the third Monday in March in the year one thousand nine hundred and seven and thereafter on the same day in each subsequent year. Such first election and all subsequent elections shall be held in such manner as is or shall be prescribed by law, unless otherwise provided in this act for the first election, except, however, that for the first election held under this act the council shall pass a resolution at the first regular meeting thereof held after the passage of this act, or at least ten days prior to the first election, providing for the division of the several wards of said city, as constituted by this act, into election precincts, number the same, establish the boundaries thereof, designate the voting place in each precinct and name the commissioners and challengers to hold the said first election.

Provided, That council may after April first, one thousand nine hundred and seven, change the names and boundaries of precincts; may create more precincts in each ward and may rearrange all or any of the precincts in any of the wards, but the new arrangement shall be so made as to have as nearly as practicable, not more than two hundred voters residing in one precinct.

Provided, further, That such changes or rearrangement shall be made by ordinance, passed in the manner prescribed for passing an ordinance herein, and it shall be the duty of council to arrange said precincts, if after any election more than two hundred votes be cast at a precinct, so that the new precincts will as far as practicable, contain not more than two hundred voters each.

And in all county and state elections, the election precincts for the territory in Kanawha county, embraced in the city of Charleston, shall be as herein designated, and the county court of said

« PreviousContinue »