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THE INSANITY LAW.
An Act in relation to the insane, constituting chapter
twenty-eight of the general laws. The People of the State of New York, represented in Senate and Assembly, do enact as follows :
CHAPTER XXVIII OF THE GENERAL LAWS.
THE INSANITY Law. ARTICLE I. State commission in lunacy and state hospital districts
insane ($$ 30-43).
ARTICLE I. STATE COMMISSION IN LUNACY AND STATE HOSPITAL DISTRICTS. SECTION 1. Short title.
2. Definitions. 3. Appointment, qualifications, terms of office and salaries of
commissioners. 4. Office and clerical force of commission. 5. Official seal and execution of papers. 6. General powers. 7. Official visits. 8. Regulations, forms and instructions. 9. Annual report.
SECTION 10. State hospital districts.
11. Change of state hospital districts.
insane. 18. Special pathologist. 1 SECTION 1. Short title.- This chapter shall be known 2 as the insanity law.
New. 1 $ 2. Definitions. The term poor or a poor person, 2 when used in this chapter, has the same meaning as in 3 the poor law. 4 An indigent person, when referred to in this chapter, 5 is one who has not sufficient property to support him6 self, while insane, and the members of his family 7 lawfully dependent upon him for support. The word 8 institution means any hospital, asylum, building, build9 ings, house or retreat, authorized by law to have the 10 care, treatment, or custody of the insane. The word 11 commission means the state commission in lunacy.
New. 1 $ 3. Appointment, qualifications, terms of office and sala2 ries of commissioners. There shall continue to be three 3 commissioners, who shall be the state commission in 4 lunacy. The present commissioners shall continue in 5 office for the terms for which they were respectively 6 appointed. Each commissioner shall be a citizen of 7 the state. One of them, who shall be president of the 8 commission, shall be a reputable physician, a graduate 9 of an incorporated medical college, of at least ten years 10 experience in the actual practice of his profession and 11 skilled in the care and treatment of and management of 12 institutions for the insane. He shall receive an annual 13 salary of five thousand dollars. One of such commis14 sioners shall be a reputable lawyer of not less than ten
15 years standing, who shall receive an annual salary of 16 three thousand dollars. The third commissioner shall 17 be a reputable citizen, and shall receive ten dollars per 18 day for actual services rendered as a member of the 19 commission. Each commissioner shall also receive 20 twelve hundred dollars, annually, in lieu of his traveling 21 and all other necessary expenses. 22 The full term of office of a commissioner shall be six 23 years.
A commissioner shall be appointed by the 24 governor, by and with the advice and consent of the 25 senate, upon the expiration of the term of any commis26 sioner, and when a vacancy shall occur in the office of a 27 commissioner, a commissioner shall in like manner be 28 appointed for the residue of the term. If the senate 29 shall not be in session when the term of a commissioner 30 expires or a vacancy occurs, the governor shall appoint 31 a commissioner subject to the approval of the senate 32 when convened. 33 Each commissioner shall, within ten days after his 34 appointment, take and file in the office of the secretary 35 of state the oath of office.
L. 1890, ch. 273, SS 1-5.
(Post, p. 1814.)
1 $ 4. Office and clerical force of commission.— The com2 mission shall be provided by the proper authorities with 3 a suitably furnished office in the state capitol, where 4 they shall hold stated meetings at least once in three 5 months. They may hold other meetings, at such office 6 or elsewhere, as they may deem necessary. They may 7 employ a secretary, a stenographer and such other 8 employes as may be necessary, whose total annual sal9 aries shall not exceed forty-five hundred dollars. The 10 salaries and reasonable expenses of the board, and the 11 necessary clerical assistance shall be paid by the treas12 urer of the state on the warrant of the comptroller out of 13 any moneys appropriated for the support of the insane.
L. 1890, ch. 273, $ 6.
1 $ 5. Official seal and execution of papers. The commis2 sion shall have an official seal. Every process, order or 3 other paper issued or executed by the commission, may, 4 by direction of the commission, be attested under its 5 seal, by its secretary or by any member of the commis6 sion, and when so attested shall be deemed to be duly 7 executed by the commission.
L. 1890, chi 273, $ 14.
(Post, p. 1820.)
1 $ 6. General powers. The state commission in lunacy 2 is charged with the execution of the laws relating 3 to the custody, care and treatment of the insane, not 4 including idiots and feeble-minded persons. They shall 5 examine all institutions, public and private, where any 6 such person may be, and inquire into their methods 7 of government and the management of all such persons 8 therein. They shall examine into the condition of all 9 buildings, grounds and other property connected with 10 any such institution, and into all matters relating to its 11 management. For such purpose each commissioner 12 shall have free access to the grounds, buildings and all 13 books relating to any such institution. All persons 14 connected with any such institution shall give such 15 information, and afford such facilities for any such 16 examination or inquiry, as the commissioners may 17 require. The state commission in lunacy shall have all 18 the powers heretofore conferred upon the board for the 19 establishment of state asylum districts by chapter 126 20 of the laws of 1890.
L. 1890, ch. 273, $ 10.
(Post, p. 1817.)
1 $ 7. Official visits.-- Each commissioner shall visit 2 every such institution at least twice in each calendar 3 year. So far as practicable, such visits shall be made 4 by all of the commissioners, or by a majority of them,
5 jointly, and shall be on such days and at such hours of 6 the day or night, and for such length of time, as the 7 visiting commissioners may choose. Each visit shall 8 include, to the fullest extent deemed necessary, an 9 inspection of every part of each institution, and all the 10 out-houses, places, buildings and grounds belonging 11 thereto or used in connection therewith. They shall 12 make an examination of all the records and methods of 13 administration, the general and special dietary, the 14 stores and methods of supply, and, as far as circum15 stances may permit, of every patient confined therein, 16 especially those admitted since the preceding visit, 17 giving such as may require it suitable opportunity to 18 converse with the commissioners apart from the officers 19 and attendants. They shall, as far as they deem 20 necessary, examine the officers, attendants and other 21 employes, and make such inquiries as will determine 22 their fitness for their respective duties. They shall, 23 from time to time, meet the directors, or respon24 sible authorities of each institution, or as many of 25 the number as practicable, in conference, and con26 sider in detail all questions of management and 27 improvement of the institution. At the conclusion of 28 the visit, or as soon thereafter as practicable, the 29 visiting commissioners shall enter at length in the com30 missioners' visiting book the results of the visit. At 31 the next regular or special meeting of the commission, 32 after any such visit, the visiting commissioners shall 33 report the result thereof, with such recommendations 34 for the better management or improvement of any such 35 institution, as they may deem necessary. All recom36 mendations of commissioners or a majority of them, or 37 of the board of commissioners which are just and 38 reasonable, shall be complied with by all persons and 39 officers having the care or custody of any insane person 40 to whom or to the management of the institution in 41 which he may be confined, such recommendations may 42 relate. No such recommendations shall be operative