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(No. 30.)

Report of Committee to investigate the expenditures on State Prison, at Jacksonburg.

The select committee instructed to inquire into the proceedings of the commissioners on the state penitentiary, beg leave to report: That under the instructions from the Senate, the committee repaired to Jacksonburg, and there personally examined the work done on the penitentiary, and other buildings reported to belong to the state. The committee also examined as far as practicable the books and papers of the acting commissioner, with a view to ascertain the amount of money actually expended upon the public works at Jackson, as well as the manner of the expenditures. From all the sources of information to which the committee have had access, the inference is irresistible, that the report of the public works at Jackson, made by the acting commissioner, on the 3d of November last, and communicated to the Senate by the Audi. tor General, contains any thing but a fair statement of the condition of the works, and of the acts of the commissioner in relation thereto. The committee feel confident that no correct statement can be made of the money expended for the state in the progress of erecting the penitentiary, until the accounts of the present commissioners are audited and settled, a task of no inconsiderable importance, and the committee deem it proper at this time, to suggest to the Senate the propriety and necessity of investing some competent person with authority to repair to Jackson, with full powers to audit the accounts and settle with the commissioners. The committee would, with great deference, suggest to the Senate the propriety of a reorganization of the board of commissioners. Upon the formation of a new board, the committee desire to submit their reflections hereafter, when the committee shall have made up an estimate of a proper sum to be appropria

ted to carry on the work for another year.

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(No. 31.)

Report of the Committee on agriculture or horse racing. The committee on agriculture, to whom was referred the petition of certain citizens of Wayne county, asking for a law to authorize Joseph Wilson to construct a race track, desire to reOl't : They have duly considered the prayer of the petitioners, and believe it inexpedient to encourage by any legislative enactment, the practice of horse racing, under the plea of improving the breed of horses. From all past experience, as well as present observation, the practice of horse racing tends to corrupt the morals of society, and lead men to ruin, and is particularly dangerous to the young. The race course, with its numerous gaming tables and groceries, is not the place to make useful members of society and good citizens, but is frequently the starting point to destruction. Aside from all moral considerations, we believe good reasons may be urged why it is impolitic to grant the prayer of the petitioners. The universal embarrassment of the country calls for industry and not idleness, for sobriety and not dissipation; and it seems much more desirable that the citizens of Michigan should be engaged in running the plough, than running horses for sport. One source of trouble is, many classes of society live beyond their means, and the prospect will never change, until men are determined to become producers instead of consumers; and horse racing as well as other sports, is poorly calculated to bring about such a result. Your committee have been some acquainted with the practice, and say that it is demoralizing in its influence, and not productive of any good to the country, and recommend the petitioners have leave to withdraw their petition. S. V. R. TROWBRIDGE, TOWNSEND F. GIDLEY, JACOB SUMMERS, Committee.

(No. 32.)

Documents in relation to certain University and State lands, accompanying the report of Mr. Woodbridge from the Committee on State Assairs, on II. R. Bill No. 41.

Resolution of the Board of Regents.

Resolved, That Judge Wilkins, Doctor Pitcher and Major Kearsely be a committee in behalf of the board of regents of the university of Michigan, to confer with the committee of the Senate on state affairs, and remonstrate against the report or passage by the Senate, of the bill for the relief of certain settlers on the university and state lands.

A true copy from the journal.

C. W. WHIPPLE, Secretary.

Remonstrance of the Board of Regents to the Senate of Michigan, against the passage of bill number forty-one, on the file of the House of Representatives.

To the Honorable the Senate
of the State of Michigan :

The undersigned, a committee appointed by a resolution of the board of regents of the university of Michigan, do most earnestly, yet respectfully remonstrate against the passage by your honorable body, of the bill number forty-one of the House of Representatives, for the following and other reasons and considerations :

The act of congress of May 20th, 1826, 16th vol. laws of U. S. page 494,] authorized the secretary of the treasury to reserve from sale two townships, or seventy-two sections of the public lands, for the purposes of an university in the territory of Michigan. This munificent grant to the then territory was certainly made in good faith for the purpose therein expressed, and with no other design and for no other purpose.

13y the act of congress for the admission of the state of Michigan into the Union, those lands were placed at the disposal of the state, for the same purposes and under the same restrictions. The constitution of Michigan, Art. 10, sec. 5, provides that the legislature shall take measures for the protection, improvement or other disposition of such lands as may have been, or may hereafter be reserved or granted by the United States to this state for the support of an university, &c.; and, “that it shall be the duty of the , legislature, as soon as may be, to provide effectual means for the improvement and permanent security of the funds of said university.” tion the constitutionality of the bill rumber forty-one, of the House of Representatives, the undersigned would, in this place, only ask the Senate, whether the disposition of the lands in question at $1 25 per acre, or even any part thereof, is “providing effectual means for the improvement and permanent security of the funds of said university ?” Again. Fourteen sections of land upon the Niles reservation, were received from the United States as equal to 8,960 acres, amounting, at $1 25 per acre, to $11,200; yet, these sections being fractional, contain only 7,164 15-100 acres, equal at same rice, to $9,955 10-100—the bill number forty-one, thus proposing to sell at a loss, even according to this estimate, of $1,244 81. In like manner, nine sections on the Nottawassippi reserve, would contain, if full sections, 5,760 acres, equal to 87,200, yet contain only 5,706 98-100 acres, amounting to $7,133 72. The lands in the Grand l{iver district present even a still stronger case than the foregoing. There, 1,600 acres have been taken for the university in lieu of 5,120 acres. Some of those lands are alleged to be worth $500 per acre. The water power is also very valuable. But the land alone is 3,520 acres less than eight full sections, for which they were located. Consequently estimating both at $1 25 per acre, the university would lose $4,400. In other words, the money received from actual settlers would re-locate 4,528 87-100 acres less than the quantity for which the present locations were taken, the loss being 85,661 09-100. Even under this view of the subject, the board of regents entertain the opinion, that the Senate cannot concur in the passage of this bill, and thus sanction the inference, that the constitutional requirement has been observed, and that the legislature have, by this act, “provided effectual means for the improvement and permanent security of the funds of said university.” But the board of regents would respectfully call the attention of the Senate to another view of this subject, in connexion with the aforesaid constitutional requirements. The affidavit of C. C. Douglass, who located these lands upon the Niles and Nottawas. sippi reservations, accompanies this remonstrance, and exhibits their average value at about $20 per acre. From this, it will appear, then, that the fund of the university, arising from lands on these two reservations alone, will be decreased $256,333 69-100. This estimate, it will be observed, is made according to what the lands were worth in 1836; the increased value of the lands, since that time, although known and admitted to be very great, is not taken into consideration.

But another, and perhaps even a stronger objection to the passage of this bill, arises from the effects of the act of the legislature, approved April 6, 1838, entitled “An act to authorize a loan of a certain sum of money to the university of Michigan.” Section 5th of that act provides “That the board of regents shall make provision for the punctual redemption of said stock, (after twenty years) for the punctual payment of the interest, &c., and all the disposable income from the university fund, shall be and is hereby pledged for the payment of the said interest and the redemption of the stock.” Under the foregoing act, the regents have, in good faith, negotiated the loan of $100,000, implicitly relying, that the legislature weuld never interfere with the university fund, as it then stood, namely: that all the lands would be held at a minimum price of $20 per acre, and that the future sales, (which can readily be made at this rate) with those already effected, would enable the regents to meet the redemption of said stock and interest punctually, and also provide for the payment of professors in the university, and the principals and tutors of the branches. The board of regents are therefore reluctantly compelled to adopt the conclusion, should this bill become a law, that it will be necessary to suspend immediately, the operation of all the branches of the university now organized, and also all contracts now entered into for the erection of professors' buildings, and all other expenditures whatever. The proceeds of the lands now disposed of, it is believed, will be no more than sufficient, (making the necessary and reasonable allowance for the lands which may revert for non-fulfilment of contracts) to meet, beyond all question, the payment of the principal and interest of the loan, and such contracts as are already made, and which must be fulfilled. Superadded to the foregoing considerations, the undersigned would very respectfully further suggest the inquiry, whether the legislature of the state, have such power over the subject matter, as to direct an absolute sale or transfer of the title of these lands, without the consent of the corporation of the university of Michi. gan 7 And if the state legislature has such power, can the funds arising from such sale or transfer, be re-invested in the purchase of other lands ! The right of the state legislature, to direct the disposition of these lands, other than to the use of an university, if such right exist, must be derived from the United States. By what act of congress is such right conferred 7 The university of Michigan, as at present constituted, is a corporation created by a state legislation. But, prior to the formation of the constitution of the state, the congress of the United States, by an act approved the 20th of May, 1826, “set apart

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