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ister, to sell the church and parsonage lots and buildings, and to build a church at South Boston ; No. 263.
An act chartering the Bank of Commerce; No. 197. And
An act to amend and re-enact the fifth section of chapter one hundred and forty-one of the Code of 1873, in reference to protest of notes; No. 276.
In which bills they respectfully request the concurrence of the house of delegates.
Nos. 276 and 258. Senate bills, were read twice and placed on the calendar, the rules having been suspended (on motions severally made) requiring their reference to committees.
Nos. 263, 208 and 259. Senate bills, were read twice and referred to the committee for courts of justice.
Nos. 260, 241 and 278. Senate bills, were read twice and referred to the committee on propositions and grievances.
Nos. 285, 247 and 265. Senate bills, were read twice and referred to the committee on counties, cities and towns.
No. 197. Senate bill, was read twice and referred to the committee on banks, currency and commerce.
No. 261. Senate bill, was read twice and referred to the committee on Chesapeake and its tributaries.
No. 274. Senate bill, was read twice and referred to the committee on finance.
Nos. 240 and 249. Senate bills, were read twice and referred to the committee on roads and internal navigation.
No. 252. Senate bill entitled an act in relation to the public roads of Nelson county, was reported from the committee on counties, cities and towns.
A message was received from the senate by Mr. Allan, who informed the house that the senate had agreed to the following resolution :
Resolved, That the house of delegates be requested to return senate bill No. 249, to incorporate the Richmond and Newport News railway. company.
The senate resolution was agreed to.
The following house bills, reported from the committee for courts of justice, were read a first time:
No. 354. House bill to amend and re-enact the 8th section of the 169th chapter of the Code of 1873, relative to the death or change of parties, and the discontinuance of causes not prosecuted, with a recommendation that it do not pass.
No. 355. House bill in relation to county court judges, with a recommendation that it do not pass.
No. 356. House bill for the relief of James A. Swanson, of Pittsylvania county, reportel from the committee on finance, was read a first time.
The following report was presented :
The committee to whom was referred the resolution directing an inquiry and report as to the enforcement of the claims of the Commonwealth against the Chesapeake and Ohio canal company, and the fees paid to counsel for the services rendered in said matter, report:
That they immediately requested the attendance of General Bradley T. Johnson, one of the counsel employed by the board of public works, who furnished them with a detailed statement of the transaction, which they likewise find fully recorded in the proceedings of the board of public works, with frequent and particular reports made from time to time by General Johnson and his colleagues to that body. They have ascertained
the following facts : The Chesapeake and Ohio canal company, a corporation created by Virginia, Maryland, Pennsylvania, and the United States having been always unable to earn any net income, and the State of Maryland having exhausted her resources in constructing it, procured the Commonwealth of Virginia to guarantee $500,000 of the company's bonds. On these bonds Virginia had paid interest from 1852 up to 1865, whenever the coupons on them were presented to her, amounting to $269,000. In April, 1865, all the coupons thus paid by her were lost, stolen or destroyed, in the occupation of the capitol by the federal forces, and thus the only evidence of the debt due by the company to Virginia passed beyond her control; so that in 1867 Virginia was bound as guarantee on $500,000 of bonds, the maker of which had been bankrupt for twenty years, and paid out for it $269,000, the evidence of which payment was, owing to the reasons already assigned, either destroyed or made very difficult to obtain.
Under these circumstances the general assembly passed the following resolution on the 26th day of February, 1867:
Be it resolved by the general assembly of Virginia, That the board of public works be and they are hereby authorized and directed to adopt such measures as in their judgment may be necessary and proper to realize the preferred liens of the State upon the tolls and revenues of the Chesapeake and Ohio canal company, and for that purpose to contract with counsel for the enforcement of said liens, in concert with other holders of similar liens :
Provided, however, that the compensation of such counsel shall be contingent only, and shall be paid by said board only out of the proceeds to be realized from such proceedings, or the debts or liens secured thereby.
Immediately thereafter the board of public works, by virtue thereof, made two contracts with Messrs. Neilson Poe and John P. Poe, of Baltimore, and General Bradley T. Johnson, of Richmond, the originals of which we have examined, and which are likewise recorded at their respective dates among the proceedings of the board of public works.
. The first contract of February 27, 1867, after reciting the resolution, and that the Commonwealth is guarantee on $500,000 of these bonds, "and the said company is utterly insolvent, whereby the State is really bound for the full amount of said bonds; and that the State is also the
creditor of the company for the interest paid by her on guaranteed bonds, and also for $208,000 of bonds, with interest from 1852, held by the State; and whereas, it is represented to this board that if the tolls and revenues of the canal are appropriated to the payment of these debts due Virginia, and other like debts due other persons of like dignity, that said tolls and revenues will be sufficient to infuse large value into interests which are now utterly unproductive, and will relieve the State from her aforesaid liability as guarantee, by providing for payment of interest on the bonds so guaranteed as aforesaid."
Wherefore, the board of public works agreed with the counsel named “that they, the parties of the second part, shall undertake to secure the aforesaid 'debts and interests of said State in said canal company, by securing possession of the canal and appropriating its tolls and revenues to the said debts and liabilities, and other debts and liabilities due by the canal company to other parties as well as to said State.” And the board appointed them its attorneys to prosecute the matter before any court, or before the general assembly of Maryland, “to secure said interests and debts of said State, by procuring possession of the tolls and revenues of said canal and appropriating them to the payment of the said debts due said State, and liabilities for which she is security as aforesaid, and the like debts due by the canal to other creditors.” And it was expressly agreed that they, the counsel, should pay all expenses, costs and charges of every kind; and further, that whenever the said canal, or its tolls and revenues, are delivered over into the possession of the preferred creditors thereof, and of which the State is one, as heroinbefore set forth, then and in that case the parties of the second part are to be considered as having performed their obligations under this contract, and to have secured the said debts, liabilities and liens of said State in said caval.” And for compensation the board agreed to assign to the counsel, "as soon as said canal, or its tolls and revenues, are delivered or appropriated to the preferred creditors thereof, such per centum of the debts due, liabilities guaranteed, and claims against said canal, held or guaranteed by said State, as shall be determined by a general meeting of the creditors of the company to be proper compensation for like services.
On the 5th of March, 1867, the board made a supplemental contract with the same parties, reciting the original contract, and that all parties preferred to have the rate of compensation fixed at once, without waiting for the general meeting of creditors, wherein it was agreed “that the rate of compensation should be twenty per cent. of the debts due to, liabilities guaranteed and money paid by the State of Virginia to, for and in behalf of the (hesapeake and Ohio canal company, which rate shall be in lieu of that referred to in the original agreement, and which amount shall be paid the parties of the second part in bonds, coupons, or other indebtedness of the canal company in the hands of and belonging to the State, as soon as said canal or its tolls and revenues is delivered or appropriated to the preferred creditors thereof, or trustees for them."
We find that the counsel employed under these contracts prosecuted the undertaking for five years with diligence and effect. They procured, in 1867 and 1870, legislation by the general assembly of Maryland for the accomplishment of their object, and in 1870 and 1871 they obtained decisions of the court of appeals of Maryland-reported in 32 and 35 Maryland reports—definitely settling the rights of Virginia in the premises. The rights of Virginia have been pressed before the courts and in the general assembly and constitutional conventions of Maryland, as their records testify, and the proceedings of the counsel have been duly reported to the board of public works as the undertaking progressed, and have been approved by them in detail. The result has been that a debt of $500,000, on which the State was guarantor, amounting, with over-due interest, to nearly a million of dollars, has either been paid off or secured to be paid, so that the State will not be called on again to make good her guarantee, as appears by the letter of the governor of Maryland, dated November 13, 1872, on file in the office of the board of public works; and counsel have collected and paid into the treasury the sum of $82,347 10, with which bonds have been purchased representing $222,000 of the old debt. In January, 1873, the board of public works, being satisfied that the contract had been complied with, made a final settlement with the counsel, receiving from them the sum of $17,757 in cash and a release of all claims against the State under their contract, and assigned to them such claims of the State against the canal company as they were entitled to.
The whole matter is therefore finally concluded ; and we find
1st. That the contracts made by the board of public works with the counsel were authorized by law, and were judicious and advantageous to the State. · 2d. That they have been executed by counsel with zeal, energy, ability and success; and
3d. That the final a ljustment and settlement was strictly in accordance with the agreement and contracts made and entered into.
H. W. THOMAS, Chairman senate committee.
T. G. POPHAM, Chairman house committee.
ROBERT L. MONTAGUE.
Leave of absence was granted Messrs. Friend one day, Goodwyn two days, and Montague five days.
Mr. Riddlebarger offered the following resolution :
Resolved, That the special investigating committee, composed on the part of the house of Messrs. Riddlebarger, McMullan, Gilman and Bagwell, be permitted to sit during the sessions of the house.
The house refused to refer the resolution to a committee.
The following were presented and referred under rule 37 :
railroad company to change and regulate the gauge of its road. Referred to committee on roads and internal navigation.
By Mr. Morrison : Petition of citizens of the county of Rockbridge, asking legislation for the protection of fish. Referred to committee on Chesapeake and its tributaries.
The morning hour having expired, special order
No. 276. House bill for the assessment, levy and collection of taxes, came up
On motion of Mr. Bagwell, the special order was postponed for
The hour of twelve o'clock M. having arrived, special order
No. 10. Senate bill entitled an act to provide for the lease of the penitentiary, came up.
On motion of Mr. Lovenstein, the special order was postponed until Wednesday next.
No. 343. House bill to amend and re-enact section 1 of chapter 14 of the Code of 1873, in relation to the time of meeting of the general assembly, was,
On motion of Mr. Bagwell, taken up out of its order on the calendar. The bill was read a second time and amended. The bill was ordered to be engrossed to be read a third time-yeas 60; nays 22.
On motion of Mr. Holbrook, the vote was recorded as follows :
YEAS_Messrs. Allen, Armentrout, Armstrong, Bagwell, Blair, Brady, Branch, Brown, J. A. Carter, Jack Carter, Cecil, Matt Clark, Cockerille, Coghill, Crank, Dooley, Fitzpatrick, Gardner, P. Gibson, Gilliam, Gilman, Graves, Haden, Harrison, Hoenniger, John T. Hoskins, Howard, Hudgin, Hunter, James, Jett, Rufus S. Jones, J. Horace Lacy, Lamkin, Lewis, Lovell, Loving, Massey, May, McMullan, Montague, Morris, Morrison, Neeley, Pendleton, Popham, Richmond, Scruggs, Sellers, Shumate, Spratt, Stuart, Syphax, Taylor, Turner, Wallace, Whittaker, Williams, Winn, and Mr. Speaker-60.
Nays—Messrs. Anderson, Beaton, Bohannon, Brooks, Campbell, A. J. Clark, Franklin, Fulkerson, Griffith, Hamilton, Holbrook, William Hoskins, Lightner, Longley, Lovenstein, Moss, W. A. Nash, Ould, Rogers, Strother, Withers, and Young--22.
No. 276. House bill for the assessment, levy and collection of taxes, again came up.
Mr. Morris moved a reconsideration of the vote by which the substitute offered by Mr. Stuart (as amended) for the 147th section was agreed to
(See substitute offered by Mr. Stuart, and amendments thereto by Mr. Dooley, in Journal of Friday, April 3, 1874.)
The motion by Mr. Morris to reconsider was agreed to-yeas 42; On motion of Mr. Popham, the vote was recorded as follows: