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of those who are to be taxed with its payment. Hoagland v. Sacramento, 52 Cal. 142.
The pueblo lands of the town of Santa Barbara were subject to legislative control, and a subsequent approval by the legislature of a defective conveyance by the town authorities of a portion of the pueblo land, was equivalent, in law, to a previous authority to dispose of them. Thompson v. Thompson, 52 Cal. 155.
The legislature has power to change the rules of evidence at any time. A depositio which would have been admissible in evidence before the amendment of section 1880, Cɔde of Civil Procedure, in 1874, could not be received in evidence thereafter. Mitchell v. Hagenmeyer, 51 Cal. 108.
The legislature cannot levy assessments for street improvements in a city, but may authorize the municipal authorities to do so. Brady v. King, 53 Cal. 44. People v. Lynch, 51 Cal. 15, and cases cited. Schumacher v. Toberman, 56 Cal. 511.
The legislature has power to vacate a street in a city, and may commit such authority to the municipality, and may again revoke it, or itself exercise the power. The plenary power of the legislature over the whole domain of streets is well illustrated by the decisions of this court in the litigation concerning Kearney, Second and Beale streets. Pollack v. S. F. Orphan Asylum, 48 Cal. 491. See S. F. v. Canavan, 42 Cal. 541; Payne v. Treadwell, 16 Cal. 233; People v. San Francisco, 36 Cal. 595.
The constitution is not a grant but a limit
ation of power, and when any one challenges an act of the legislature as in violation of the constitution, he must point out the particular provision which he claims is violated. The legislature may compel local improvements which it deems beneficial to the people, such as abating nuisances, opening canals, irrigating arid districts, building levees, and may impose local assessments to pay for the same. Hagar v. Supervisors of Yolo County, 47 Cal. 223. And those clauses of the constitution which provide that taxation shall be equal and uniform, and prescribe the mode of assessment and the persons by whom assessments shall be made, and that all property shall be taxed, have no application to assessments made for local improvements. Id. May authorize the channel of a river to be changed to protect a locality from threatened inundation. Green v. Swift, Id. 536. May enact that suits for violation of city ordinance be prosecuted in the name of the people of the state. Pillsbury v. Brown, Id. 478. Although the constitution of the state does not prescribe the particular duties of attorney-general, secretary, controller and treasurer, and contains no express limitation upon the powers of the legisÎature as to the nature of the duties it may impose upon those officers, yet there is an implied limitation, which is to be found in the general character of duties which similar officers had performed in other states before our constitution was adopted. Love v. Baehr, Id. 364. The legislature has power in creating an
office to define the duties of the officer by requiring that such duties shall be such as are prescribed by a statute already existing, and referring to such statute for the purpose. People v. Whipple, No. 2, Id. 592.
The constitution is not a grant but a limitation of powers, and an express enumeration of powers is not an exclusion of others not named unless there are negative terms expressive of the intent to exclude others not named. Ex parte McCarthy, 29 Cal. 396.
That the constitution is not a grant but a limitation upon powers of legislation, and that it is competent for the legislature to exercise all powers not forbidden by the constitution or delegated to the general government or prohibited by the constitution of the United States, see Cohen v. Wright, 22 Cal. 308; Hobart v. Supervisors, 17 Cal. 24; People r. Judge Twelfth Dist. Id. 548; Vermule v. Bigler, 5 Id. 23; People v. Coleman, 4 Id. 46; and such restrictions must appear, either by express terms or by necessary inference. State v. Rogers, 13 Id. 160.
The legislature has power to change a rule of evidence after a contract to which the rule applies has been made, and after suit has been commenced on the contract. Himmelman r. Carpentier, 47 Cal. 42, and may change the mode of trial in a criminal case; People v. Mortimer, 46 Cal. 114; but cannot legalize existing pleadings which are substantially defective, without causing them to be amended. People v. Mariposa County, 31 Cal. 196.
For the purpose of securing mechanics' liens, the act of 1868 [Stats. p. 589], declaring that persons claiming an interest in lands who knowingly permit buildings or other improvements to be erected thereon without giving notice that they will not be responsible for the cost thereof, shall be deemed to have acquiesced in their erection, is not unconstitutional. Fuquay v. Stickney, 41 Cal. 583.
The legislature has power to declare who may be witnesses, and to regulate the production of evidence in the courts of the state. The constitution of the United States does not conflict with the power of the legislature to deny Chinese testimony. [People v. George Washington, 36 Cal. 658, overruled.] People v. Brady, 40 Cal. 198. Congress has no constitutional authority to legislate concerning rules of evidence administered in courts of this state. Duffy v. Hobson, 40 Cal. 240.
A legislative act extending the corporate limits of the city of Santa Rosa, held stitutional although certain lands thereby embraced were used for agricultural purposes and were not essential for municipal purposes. City of Santa Rosa v. Coulter, 58 Cal. 537.
That part of the act creating a state board of equalization which makes the controller one of its members, and providing that the governor appoint the other two members, is not unconstitutional. Savings and Loan Soc. v. Austin, 46 Cal. 416. Wallace, C. J., and Niles J., dissenting in part.
The act of March 7, 1878 [Stats. p. 181],
for the relief of George Knox, is unconstitutional; Knox was appointed superintendent of irrigation in Los Angeles county in pursuance of an act of March 10, 1874 [Stats. p. 312], but as he was an officer of only such localities or districts as were formed into irrigation districts, he was not a county officer, and he could only be paid from the funds realized from water rates collected from persons supplied with water. [People v. Townsend, 56 Cal. 633.] Knox v. Los Angeles County, 58 Cal. 59.
The legislature can abolish or change an office created by it, and it may extend or abridge the terms of its incumbents at pleasure. It may confer upon the board of fire underwriters voluntary association-the power to elect a fire commissioner. A change in the membership of the association does not take away its power of appointment, and the constitution does not prohibit the legislature from conferring such power upon such association even though its members are not citizens of the United States nor electors of the city. In re Bulger; In re Merrill, 45 Cal. 553.
The legislature has no power to declare that improvements made upon public lands of the United States, such as trees and houses which have become part of the realty, may be removed by the person making such improvements, within six months after the lands shall have become the private property of any person. The act of 1868 [Stats. p. 708], giving such right is void, because in conflict