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In the assessment of real estate, incumbered by public easement, any depreciation occasioned by such easement may be deducted in the valuation of such property.
§ 4. The General Assembly shall provide, in all cases where it may be necessary to sell real estate for the non-payment of taxes or special assessments, for State, county, municipal or other purposes, that a return of such unpaid taxes or assessments shall be made to some general officer of the county having authority to receive State and county taxes; and there shall be no sale of the said property for any of said taxes or assessments, but by said officer, upon the order or judgment of some court of record.
$ 5. The right of redemption from all sales of real estate, for the non-payment of taxes or special assessments of any character whatever, shall exist in favor of owners and persons interested in such real estate, for a period of not less than two years from such sales thereof. And the General Assembly shall provide, by law, for reasonable notice to be given to the owners or parties interested, by publication or otherwise, of the fact of the sale of property for such taxes or assessments, and when the time of redemption shall expire: Provided, That occupants shall in all cases be served with personal notice before the time of redemption expires.
§ 6. The General Assembly shall have no power to release or discharge any county, city, township, town or district whatever, or the inhabitants thereof, or the property therein, from their or its proportionate share of taxes to be levied for State purposes, nor shall commutation for such taxes be authorized in any form whatsoever.
$ 7. All taxes levied for State purposes shall be paid into the State Treasury.
8 8. County authorities shall never assess taxes, the aggregate of which shall exceed seventy-five cents per one hundred dollars valuation, except for the payment of indebtedness existing at the adoption of this Constitution, unless authorized by a vote of the people of the county.
$ 9. The General Assembly may vest the corporate authorities of cities, towns and villages, with power to make local improvements by special assessment or by special taxation of contiguous property, or otherwise. For all other corporate purposes, all municipal corporations may be vested with authority to assess and collect taxes; but such taxes shall be uniform, in respect to persons and property, within the jurisdiction of the body imposing the same.
§ 10. The General Assembly shall not impose taxes upon municipal corporations, or the inhabitants or property thereof, for corporate purposes; but shall require that all the taxable property within the limits of municipal corporations shall be taxed for the payment of debts contracted under authority of law, such taxes to be uniform in respect to persons and property within the jurisdiction of the body posing the same. Private property shall not be liable to be taken or sold for the payment of the corporate debts of a municipal corporation.
§ 11. No person who is in default as collector or custodian of money or property belonging to a municipal corporation, shall be eligible to any office in or under such corporation. The fees, salary or compensation of no municipal officer who is elected or appointed for a definite term of office, shall be increased or diminished during such term.
$ 12. No county, city, township, school district or other municipal corporation, shall be allowed to become indebted in any manner or for any purpose to an amount, including existing indebtedness, in the aggregate exceeding five per centum on the value of the taxable property therein, to be ascertained by the last assessment for State and county taxes, previous to the incurring of such indebtedness. Any county, city, school district or other municipal corporation, incurring any indebtedness as aforesaid, shall, before or at the time of doing so, provide for the collection of a direct annual tax sufficient to pay the interest on such debt as it falls due, and also to pay and discharge the principal thereof within twenty years from the time of contracting the same.
This section shall not be construed to prevent any county, city, township, school district or other municipal corporation, from issuing their bonds in compliance with any vote of the people which may have been had prior to the adoption of this Constitution in pursuance of any law providing therefor.
SECTION 1. No new county shall be formed or established by the General Assembly, which will reduce the county or counties, or either of them, from which it shall be taken, to less contents than four hundred square miles; nor shall any county be formed of less contents; nor shall any line thereof pass within less than ten miles of any county seat of the county or counties proposed to be divided.
§ 2. No county shall be divided, or have any part stricken therefrom, without submitting the question to a vote of the people of the county, nor unless a majority of all the legal voters of the county voting on the question, shall vote for the same.
$ 3. There shall be no territory stricken from any county uniess a majority of the voters living in such territory shall petition for such division; and no territory shall be added to any county without the consent of the majority of the voters of the county to which it is proposed to be added. But the portion so stricken off and added to another county, or formed in whole or in part into a new county, shall be holden for, and obliged to pay its proportion of the indebtedness of the county from which it has been taken.
County Seats. § 4. No county seat shall be removed until the point to which it is proposed to be removed shall be fixed in pursuance of law, and a majority of the voters of the county, to be ascertained in such manner as shall be provided by general law, shall have voted in favor of its removal to such point; and no person shall vote on such question who has not resided in the county six months, and in the election precinct ninety days next preceding such election. The question of the removal of a county seat shall not be oftener submitted than once in ten years, to a vote of the people.
§ 5. The General Assembly shall provide, by general law, for township organization, under which any county muy organize whenever a majority of the legal voters of such county, voting at any general election, shall so determine; and whenever any county shall adopt township organization, so much of this Constitution as provides for the management of the fiscal concerns of the said county by the Board of County Commissioners may be dispensed with, and the affairs of said county may be transacted in such manner as the General Assembly may provide. And in any county that shall have adopted a township organization, the question of continuing the same may be submitted to a vote of the electors of such county at a general election, in the manner that now is or may be provided by law; and if a majority of all the votes cast upon that question shall be against township organization, then such organization shall cease in said county; and all laws in force in relation to counties not having township organization, shall immediately take effect and be in force in such county. No two townships shall have the same name, and the day of holding the annual township meeting shall be uniform throughout the State
§ 6. At the first election of County Judges under this Constitution, there shall be elected in each of the counties in this State, not under township organization, three officers, who shall be styled “The Board of County Commissioners,” who shall hold sessions for the transaction of county business as shall be provided by law. One of said commissioners shall hold his office for one year, one for two years, and one for three years, to be determined by lot; and every year thereafter one such officer shall be elected in each of said counties for the term of three years.
$ 7. The county affairs of Cook county shall be managed by a Board of Commissioners of fifteen persons, ten of whom shall be elected from the city of Chicago, and five from towns outside of said city, in such manner as may be provided by law.
County Officers, and their Compensation, § 8. In each county there shall be elected the following county officers: County Judge, Sheriff, County Clerk, Clerk of the Circuit Court, (who may be ex-officio Recorder of Deeds, except in counties having sixty thousand and more inhabitants, in which counties a Recorder of Deeds shall be elected at the general election in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and seventy-two,) Treasurer, Surveyor, and Coroner, each of whom shall enter upon the duties of his office, respectively, on the first Monday of December after their election; and they shall hold their respective offices for the term of four years, except the Treasurer, Sheriff, and Coroner, who shall hold their offices for two years and until their successors shall be elected and qualified.
$ 9. The clerks of all the courts of record, the Treasurer, Sheriff, Coroner, and Recorder of Deeds of Cook county, shall receive, as their only compensation for their services, salaries to be fixed by law, which shall in no case be as much as the lawful compensation of a judge of the Circuit Court of said county, and shall be paid, respectively, only out of the fees of the office actually collected. All fees, perquisites and emoluments (above the amount of said salaries) shall be paid into the county treasury. The number of the deputies and assistants of such officers shall be determined by rule of the Circuit Court, to be entered of record, and their compensation shall be determined by the County Board.
§ 10. The County Board, except as provided in section nine of this article, shall fix the compensation of all county officers, with the amount of their necessary clerk hire, stationery, fuel and other expenses, and in all cases where fees are provided for, said compensation shall be paid only out of, and shall in no instance exceed the fees actually collected; they shall not allow either of them more per annum than fifteen hundred dollars, in counties not exceeding twenty thousand inhabitants; two thousand dollars in counties containing twenty thousand and not exceeding thirty thousand inhabitants; twenty-five hundred dollars in counties containing thirty thousand and not exceeding fifty thousand inhabitants; three thousand dollars in counties containing fifty thousand and not exceeding seventy thousand inhabitants; thirty-five hundred dollars in counties containing seventy thousand and not exceeding one hundred thousand inhabitants; and four thousand dollars in counties containing over one hundred thousand and not exceeding two hundred and fifty thousand inhabitants; and not more than one thousand dollars additional compensation for each additional one hundred thousand inhabitants: Provided, That the compensation of no officer shall be increased or diminished during his term of office. All fees or allowances by them received, in excess of their said compensation, shall be paid into the county treasury.
$11. The fees of township officers, and of each class of county officers, shall be uniform in the class of counties to whieh they respectively belong. The compensation herein provided for shall apply only to officers hereafter elected, but all fees established by special laws shall cease at the adoption of this Constitution, and such officers shall receive only such fees as are provided by general law.
$ 12. All laws fixing the fees of State, county and township officers shall terminate with the terms, respectively, of those who may be in office at the meeting of the first General Assembly after the adoption of this Constitution; and the General Assembly shall, by general law, uniform in its operation, provide for and regulate the fees of said officers and their successors, so as to reduce the same to a reasonable compensation for services actually rendered. But the General Assembly may, by general law, classify the counties by population into not more than three classes, and regulate the fees according to class.
This article shall not be construed as depriving the General Assembly of the power to reduce the fees of existing officers.
§ 13. Every person who is elected or appointed to any office in this State, who shall be paid in whole or in part by fees, shall be required by law to make a semiannual report, under oath, to some officer to be designated by law, of all his fees and emoluments,
SECTION 1. No corporation shall be created by special laws, or its charter extended, changed or amended, except those for charitable, educational, penal or reformatory purposes, which are to be and remain under the patronage and control of the State; but the General Assembly shall provide, by general laws, for the organization of all corporations hereafter to be created.
§ 2. 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 ten days from the time this Constitution takes effect, shall thereafter have no validity or effect whatever.
$ 3. The General Assembly 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, shall 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 any other manner.
§ 4. No law shall be passed by the General Assembly, granting the right to construct and operate a street railroad within any city, town, or incorporated village, without requiring the consent of the local authorities having the control of the street or high way proposed to be occupied by such street railroad.
$ 5. No State Bank shall hereafter be created, nor shall the State own or be liable for any stock in any corporation or joint stock company or association for banking purposes, now created, or to be hereafter created. No act of the General Assembly authorizing or creating corporations or associations, with banking powers, whether of issue, deposit or discount, nor amendments thereto, shall go into effect or in any manner be in force, unless the same shall be submitted to a vote of the people at the general election next succeeding the passage of the same, and be approved by a majority of all the votes cast at such election for or against such law.
& 6. Every stockholder in a banking corporation or institution shall be individually responsible and liable to its creditors, over and above the amount of stock by him or her held, to an amount equal to his or her respective shares so held, for all its liabilities accruing while he or she remains such stockholder.
$ 7. The suspension of specie payments by banking institutions, on their circulation, created by the laws of this State, shall never be permitted or sanctioned. Every banking association, now or which may hereafter be organized under the laws of this State, shall make and publish a full and accurate quarterly statement of its affairs, (which shall be certified to, under oath, by one or more of its officers) as may be provided by law.
$ 8. If a general banking law shall be enacted, it shall provide for the registry and countersigning, by an officer of State, of all bills or paper credit, designed to circulate as money, and require security, to the full amount thereof, to be deposited with the State Treasurer, in United States or Illinois State Stocks, to be rated at ten per cent. below their par value; and in case of the depreciation of said stocks to the amount of ten per cent. below par, the bank or banks owning said stocks shall be required to make up said deficiency, by depositing additional stocks. And said law shall also provide for the recording of the names of all stockholders in such corporations, the amount of stock held by each, the time of any transfer thereof, and to whom such transfer is made.
Railroads. 8 9. Every railroad corporation organized or doing business in this State under the laws or authority thereof, shall have and maintain a public office or place in this State for the transaction or its business, where transfers of stock shall be made, and in which shall be kept, for public inspection. books, in which shall be recorded the amount of capital stock subscribed, and by whom; the names of the owners of its stock, and the amounts owned by them respectively; the amount of stock paid in, and by whom; the transfers of said stock; the amount of its assets and liabilities, and the names and place of residence of its officers. The directors of every railroad corporation shall annually make a report, under oath, to the Auditor of Public Accounts, or some officer to be designated by law, of all their acts and doings, which report shall include such matters relating to railroads as may be prescribed by law. And the General Assembly shall pass laws enforcing, by suitable penalties, the provisions of this section.
§ 10. The rolling stock, and all other movable property belonging to any railroad company or corporation in this State, shall be considered personal property, and shall be liable to execution and sale in the same manner as the personal property of individuals, and the General Assembly shall pass no law exempting any such property from execution' and sale.
§ 11. No railroad corporation shall consolidate its stock, property or franchises with any other railroad corporation owning a parallel or competing line; and in no case shall any consolidation take place except upon public notice given, of at least sixty days, to all stockholders, in such manner as may be provided by law. A majority of the directors of any railroad corporation now incorporated or hereafter to be incorporated by the laws of this State, shall be citizens and residents of this State.
$ 12. Railways heretofore constructed or that may hereafter be constructed in this State are hereby declared public highways, and shall be free to all persons for the transportation of their persons and property thereon, under such regulations as may be prescribed by law. And the General Assembly shall, from time to time, pass laws establishing reasonable maximum rates of charges for the transportation of passengers and freight on the different railroads in this State.
§ 13. No railroad corporation shall issue any stock or bonds, except for money, labor or property actually received and applied to the purposes for which such corporation was created; and all stock dividends, and other fictitious increase of the capital stock or indebtedness of any such corporation, shall be void. The capital stock of no railroad corporation shall be increased for any purpose, except upon giving sixty days public notice, in such manner as may be provided by law.