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Sec. 13. Every person who shall have any money due to him from any town, or any demand against any town for any matter, cause or thing whatever, shall take the following method to obtain the same, to wit: such person shall present to the electors of such town who are entitled to vote on any proposition to impose a tax, when legally assembled in town meeting, a particular account of his debt or demand, and how contracted; which being done, in case just and due satisfaction is not made him by the town treasurer of such town, within one month after the presentment of such debt or demand aforesaid, it shall be lawful for such person to commence his action against such town treasurer for the recovery of the same; and upon judgment obtained for such debt or demand, in case the town treasurer shall not have sufficient of the town's money in his hands to satisfy and pay ment obtained against him, and the charges expended in defending such suit, upon application made by such town treasurer to any justice of the peace of such town, such justice shall grant a warrant to the town sergeant of such town, requiring him to warn the said electors of such town to hold a town meeting, at such time and place as shall be appointed, for the speedy ordering and making a tax, to be collected for the reimbursement of such town treasurer; and in case such town, upon due warning given them, shall not take due and effectual care to reimburse, pay or satisfy such town treasurer, such money, costs and charges by him expended or recovered against him, upon information or complaint thereof by him made to the next general assembly, such order shall be given therein for the said treasurer's reimbursement, with allowance for all incidental costs, charges and trouble occasioned thereby ; and such town shall be fined, at the discretion of the general assembly.
Sec. 14. The city of Providence shall continue to have and exercise all the powers and privileges, except the power of passing by-laws or regulations in relation to the going at large in said city of horses, neat-cattle, sheep, hogs, goats and geese, and to be subject to all the duties and privileges, mentioned in the act entitled "an act to incorporate the city of Providence,” and in the several acts specially relating to said city.
Sec. 15. Each town shall continue to have and exercise all the powers and privileges, except the power of passing by-laws or regulations in relation to the going at large within said town of horses, neat-cattle, sheep, hogs, goats and geese, and be subject to all the duties and liabilities, conferred, or imposed upon it by the several acts of the general assembly specially relating to it, until the same shall expire by their own limitation, or shall be repealed.
Sec. 16. All the powers and privileges which have been conferred by the general assembly on any district or village situated in any town or towns, except the power of passing by-laws or regulations relative to the going at large within said district or village of any horses, neat-cattle, sheep, hogs, goats or geese, and all duties and liabilities imposed on such village or district, shall be had or exercised by such district or village, until the same shall be repealed or shall expire by their own limitation.
Sec. 17. All the powers, privileges and duties which have been conferred or imposed by the general assembly on any officers appointed by said city of Providence, or by any town, or by the town council of any town, or by any village or district, shall be held and exercised and performed by such officers and by their successors duly appointed, during their continuance in office, so long as the acts of the assembly confering or imposing them shall be in force.
Sec. 18. Each and every town may authorize and empower any person appointed by them to superintend the erection of chimneys and the placing of stoves and stove pipes, to take and use such measures as the said towns shall respectively deem effectual for the removal or for the prevention of the erection of any chimneys, or the placing of any stoves or stove pipe, so as to endanger any building being set on fire by means thereof.
An Act in relation to the Election and Duties of Town Officers.
SECTION 1. What officers shall be elected annually 11. Assize of bread may be regulated by 2. When justices of the peace may be council. chosen—for what term, &c.
12. Bonds to council in what form to be 3. Proceedings in case a ballot is demand- given.
ed-order in which certain officers 13. Town clerk to be clerk of councilshall be elected.
council may appoint pro tem. 4. Names to be numbered in certain cases. 14. Town clerk may appoint a deputy. 5. Town meeting may be adjourned for 15. Same subject.
election of town clerk, &c.—town 16. Town council may appoint a town council may elect certain officers in clerk pro tem. in certain case. case, &c.
17. Penalty on surveyor of highways for 6. Term of office--yacancies how filled. refusing to serve. 7. Quorum of town council.
18. Penalty on town sergeant-overseers-8. Powers of council. 9. Same subject.
19. Town sergeant, &c., to give bond. 10. Ordinances of council to be published 20. In case of death, &c., of collector, or notified.
successor to have same power.
SECTION 21. Town treasurer to give bond
24. Wardens, &c., in Providence, when 22. Town officers to be engaged.
to be elected. 23. Town meeting, Jamestown and Cov
entry, when holden.
It is enacted by the General Assembly, as follows :
SECTION 1. The electors in each town shall annually, on their town election days, choose and elect so many town officers as by the laws of this state are or shall be required ; that is to say, a moderator to preside in all the meetings of the town, and a town clerk, a town treasurer, a town council, to consist of not less than three nor more than seven members, a town sergeant, a town sealer of weights and measures, one or more auctioneers, such a number of assessors of rates and taxes as may be deemed necessary, provided that the number be not less than three nor more than seven, one or more collectors of taxes, one or more packers of fish, a pound keeper, a sealer of leather, and so many constables, overseers of the poor, surveyors of highways, viewers of fences, guagers of casks, and all such other officers as each or any town shall have occasion for, including persons to superintend the building of chimneys and placing of stoves and stove pipes.
Sec. 2. Justices of the peace chosen by any town shall be chosen at the time of electing town officers, and shall hold their offices for one year. The town clerk shall forthwith make a return of the justices so chosen to the governor ; if not re-elected, they may continue to officiate for twenty-four days after the time for electing such officers in any town, and no longer; and if re-elected, may continue to officiate for the same number of days, without taking any new oath of office.
Sec. 3. If a vote by ballot be demanded in the election of a moderator or town clerk, a separate vote shall be taken in each case. Before the election of members of the town council or justices of the peace is begun, at the annual town meeting, the electors shall first determine the number of such officers to be elected. The members of the council shall be chosen next in order after the election of town clerk; and in choosing them, the vote, whether by ballot or otherwise, shall be taken for the whole number at the same time, and if by ballot, the names of all the persons voted for by any one elector shall be placed upon one piece of paper. The justices of the peace shall be next chosen, and in the same manner; but the ballots for the members of the town council, justices of the peace, and for any other officers, may be delivered to the moderator at the same time, if so ordered by the town. In the city of Providence, the number of justices of the peace to
be elected shall be fixed by the city council; and the voting therefor shall be conducted in all respects as is prescribed by law for the voting for senators and representatives in said city.
Sec. 4. In case of a ballot for members of council or justices of the peace, the names shall be numbered upon the ballots, and in counting them the places numbered shall be considered as separate places.
SEC. 5. If on the day of annual election of town officers any town shall fail to make an election of town clerk, council, justices of the peace, or treasurer, the meeting may be adjourned for the purpose of completing the election of those officers, but of no others, from day to day, not exceeding three days beyond the first day of meeting. In case any town shall on the day of any such annual election fail to elect any of the officers which they may lawfully choose, except town clerk, council, justices of the peace, and treasurer, the said officers shall be elected by the town council of the town at their next meeting; and the several towns shall have full power to delegate to their respective councils the election of any of the officers which such town may lawfully choose, except town clerk, council, justices of the peace, and treasurer.
SEC. 6. All town officers shall hold their offices until the next annual election of town officers, and thereafter until their successors shall be qualified by law to act; unless in cases in which it is herein expressly provided to the contrary. When a vacancy shall occur in any office by death, removal out of the town, or resignation, the town council may fill the same until the next town meeting.
Sec. 7. The major part of the persons elected members of any town council shall be a quorum ; and a majority of the members present at any legal meeting may determine any matter legally before them.
Sec. 8. The council of each town shall have full power to manage the affairs and interests of such town; to determine all such matters and things as shall by law come within their jurisdiction, and to administer all necessary oaths.
Sec. 9. Every town council is hereby authorized and empowered to make and publish such ordinances and by-laws relative to the breaches of the Sabbath day, and relative to drunkenness in their respective towns, as they may think proper; and to inflict penalties for the breach thereof : provided, that such penalty shall in no case for any one offence exceed the sum of twenty dollars ; such penalties shall be forfeited to the use of the said towns respectively; and shall and may be
recovered by action of debt, in any court of competent jurisdiction : provided, however, that such ordinances or by-laws shall not be contrary to the laws of the state.
Sec. 10. Every ordinance and by-law passed by a town council in pursuance of the provisions of the section next preceding, shall be immediately published in some newspaper printed in such town, if there be one ; if not, then the town clerk shall set up in at least three public places certified copies thereof.
SEC. 11. Each town council is hereby authorized to make laws and regulations for the settling the assize of baker's bread in its respective town; provided the same be not repugnant to the laws of the state ; and the penalty for any breach of the same shall not exceed five dollars, or the forfeiture of the bread not made conformable thereto.
SEC. 12. In every case where bonds are required by law to be given to any town council, they may be given to the said town council by name as such, without naming the individuals at the time constituting such council, and be sued in like manner. And no person shall be held disqualified as a witness in any such suit by reason of his being a member of the town council to whom the bond was given.
SEC. 13. The town clerk shall be clerk of the council; but whenever any town clerk shall not appear at the time and place appointed for the meeting of the town council, such town council may appoint a clerk, pro tempore, who, after being duly engaged, shall do and perform all the duties enjoined by law on the town clerk as clerk of the council.
Sec. 14. The town clerk of any town, by and with the approbation of the town council, may appoint a deputy whenever such appointment shall be rendered necessary by the sickness of the town clerk, or when he is otherwise compelled to be absent from his office; such deputy, so appointed, shall perform all the duties which are incumbent on the town clerk; being thereunto qualified by taking the oath of office, as required by law.
Sec. 15. Any town clerk appointing a deputy as aforesaid shall be responsible for the good conduct of the deputy ; and shall have good right to take bond with surety in such penalty as he may require, conditioned for the faithful discharge of the duties of the office during the time which he shall exercise the same ; and such clerk may revoke such appointment and cancel such bond at his discretion.
SEC. 16. The town council of any town, whenever it shall satisfactorily appear to them that the town clerk is disquali