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agent or attorney shall make oath that there have been cut, destroyed or carried away, such and so many trees, parcels of wood or underwood, as mentioned in the writ, and that he suspects the defendant to have committed the said trespass, although the plaintiff or his agent or attorney may not be able to produce any other evidence thereof than such circumstances as render it highly probable in the judgment of the justice or such other court before whom the trial is, then and in such case, unless the defendant shall acquit himself upon oath, to be administered to him by the court or justice who shall try the cause, the plaintiff shall recover against the defendant damages and costs; but if the defendant shall acquit himself upon oath as aforesaid, the court or justice before whom the trial is, shall enter up judgment for the defendant, to recover against the plaintiff double his costs occasioned by such prosecution.
An Act regulating the Assessing and Collecting of Taxes.
SECTION 1. Secretary of state to send copy of tax 16. Such debtor, &c., paying tax, to be bill to each town clerk.
protected from claim. 2. Assessors to notify inhabitants to bring 17. General treasurer may call special in lists of property under oath.
courts on collectors and their sureties 3. Those refusing, to be without remedy who neglect their duties. if over-taxed.
18. Executions obtained in such suits to 4. Assessors to value each person's real run against real estate of collectors. and personal estate separate.
19. Sheriffs may adjourn sales of estates 5. Assessors may disregard any list known so attached, in certain cases. to be false-party's remedy.
20. Estate of such collector being insuffi6. Real estates to be assessed either to cient, an alias execution to issue owners or occupants.
against his sureties. 7. Assessors to distinguish in the tax 21. Town treasurer refusing to deliver de
bills those persons who give in lists, linquent collector's bond to general
also, the taxes assessed on real estate. treasurer for suit, liable to have his 8. Penalty for making tax bill contrary estate taken to make up deficiency. to previous section.
22. Sales of real estates, and deeds of same 9. Assessors to give tax bill to town clerk, under this act, regulated.
and he to send copy to general treasu- 23. Town taxes to be assessed, &c., like rer-he to annex his warrant to col- state taxes. lector.
24. Warrants to collect tax to be in force 10. Person refusing to pay tax may be
till tax is collected. committed to jail.
25. Fees of assessors, collectors, &c. 11. Person removing, collector may follow 26. Towns refusing to assess a state tax, him to another town.
to be fined. 12. Collector may remove property dis- 27. Houses for public worship, schools,
trained and sell in any other town. &c., exempted from taxation. 13. Taxes on unimproved lands to be lev- 28. No other property not ceded to United
ied out of the lands-mode of selling States nor belonging to this state exthe same.
empt from taxation. 14. Collector may cite the debtor, &c., of 29. When a town tax is ordered, town may
absent person before justice of the elect assessors and collectors of it. peace, to pay such person's tax out of 30. Towns to have preference for taxes his debt.
due from insolvents, in certain cases. 15. Such debtor, &c., refusing to appear, 31. Personal property held in trust, where
justice of the peace to grant warrant to be taxed. of distress against the debtor, &c.
SECTION 32. Certain machinery to be assessed in land may be collected out of any one towns where located.
of them. 33. Owners of such machinery may give 36. Owner of estate sold for taxes may rein lists thereof to assessors.
deem in six months. 34. Buildings on leased land to be assessed 37. Town may pay proportion of state taxas real estate.
es out of town treasury. 35. Taxes assessed on several parcels of
It is enacted by the General Assembly, as follows :
SECTION 1. When any tax is ordered to be assessed and levied on the inhabitants of this state or any estates within the same, the secretary of state, for the time being, shall forthwith send a copy of the act imposing such tax unto each one of the town clerks, to be immediately delivered to the assessors of taxes for their respective towns.
Sec. 2. The assessors of each town shall assess and apportion the same on the inhabitants of such town, and the rateable estates within the same, by the time expressed in such act of assembly; and they shall, three weeks before they assess or apportion the same, set up three notifications under their hands, or advertise in one newspaper printed in the town, three successive weeks, requiring each of the inhabitants of their town to bring in unto them in writing and under his hand, an exact list of the rateable estate, with a particular description of each parcel thereof, and the value of each parcel, by such time as shall be therein prescribed, and to make oath to the same before any one of said assessors, who are hereby empowered to administer to the same; which oath shall be in the following form, to wit: You do solemnly swear, (or affirm,) that the account or list now exhibited by you contains, to the best of your knowledge and judgment, a true and full account of all your rateable estate : so help you God; (or this affirmation you make and give upon peril of the penalty of perjury.)
Sec. 3. Whosoever shall refuse or neglect to render and give in an account of his rateable estate as required in the preceding section, if he be overtaxed, shall have no remedy for the same.
Sec. 4. The assessors shall, before they apportion the tax among the inhabitants, make a list containing the value of each person's rateable estate by him given in, and likewise the value of all such person's estate, according to the best judgment and estimate of the assessors, who neglect or refuse to give in an account thereof, agreeably to law; and the assessors shall cast the rateable estates and thereby find how much per centum it will be, and they shall apportion the tax accordingly.
Sec. 5. When any person shall give in an account of his rateable estate and the assessors or either of them know that such account is not just and true, in such case, the assessors shall estimate such person's estate at such value in said list as they shall think it worth ; and if any person shall think himself aggrieved thereby he may petition the next court of common pleas for the county in which the supposed grievance shall happen ; and said court on receiving such petition are hereby required to grant a citation for the assessors against whom such complaint is made, to appear before them to answer thereunto; and if it shall appear on trial before the said court that the party complaining did secrete or omit any part of his rateable estate in giving in his list or account, or did place other than a fair cash value on the same, they shall give judgment against him, and the assessors shall recover costs, and the said court shall award execution for the same ; but if on trial it shall appear to the said court that a true list was given in and a fair valuation, then they shall give judgment for the complainant, that the sum in which they shall judge him to be overtaxed, together with his costs, be deducted from his tax; a copy of which judgment being produced to the collector of taxes of the town, he shall deduct such sum so overtaxed as aforesaid, and the cost from such person's tax, in case the same be not levied and collected, and the town shall pay into the general treasury such sum deducted ; but in case such tax shall have been fully paid before the producing to the said collector of taxes a copy of such judgment, then the complainant shall present the same to the town treasurer, who shall refund to him the sum over taxed and cost, out of the town treasury; and in case such sum over taxed and cost shall amount to more than such person's tax, then the balance shall be paid him out of the town treasury on producing to the town treasurer a copy of the judgment aforesaid; and no such appeal or complaint to the said court shall, during the pendency thereof and before judgment obtained as aforesaid, stay or prevent the collection of the tax of the appellant or complainant.
Sec. 6. The assessors of taxes in the several towns in assessing taxes for real estate, may assess the same either upon the owners of the real estate, or upon the persons who hold or occupy the same; in case the said taxes shall be assessed on the owners of such real estates, the real estates of such owners shall be liable for the payment and satisfaction of the said taxes : provided the same are not paid at the time appointed for the payment thereof; and in case the said taxes
shall be assessed on the tenants or occupants of such real estates, the real and personal estates of such occupants respectively, on whom the same are assessed, shall be liable for the payment and satisfaction of the said taxes so assessed : provided, nevertheless, that if such occupants or tenants of real estates as aforesaid are not possessed in their own right of estates real or personal, sufficient to satisfy the taxes assessed against them as aforesaid, the said real estates by them occupied as aforesaid shall be liable for the payment and satis faction of the said taxes so assessed.
Sec. 7. The assessors shall, in making the said list or estimate of rateable estates, distinguish therein those persons who give in an account of their estates from those who neglect so to do; and shall also distinguish all taxes assessed for real estates from those assessed for personal estates, making in the tax bill a distinct and separate column for each, and shall deliver the said estimate to the town clerk with the said tax bill.
Sec. 8. Every assessor of taxes who shall assist in making any estimate of rateable estates, or shall apportion any tax upon any estimate made in any manner different from that prescribed in the preceding section of this act, shall forseit the sum of one hundred dollars; one half thereof to the use of the person who shall sue for the same, and the other half thereof to and for the use of the town in which such unlawful estimate and apportionment may have been made; to be recovered before any court of competent jurisdiction, in an action of debt.
Sec. 9. The assessors shall, immediately upon their assessing and apportioning any tax to them committed to assess, send a true bill or list thereof to the town clerk, under their hands; and if it be a state tax the town clerk shall upon receipt thereof draw an exact copy, under his hand, and send the same to the general treasurer, with the names of the town treasurer and the collector of taxes for his town; but if it be a town tax he shall deliver the said bill or list to the town treasurer of said town; and the general treasurer on receipt of said copy shall issue forth his warrant to the collector of said town, and affix the same to the bill or list sent to him by the town clerk, commanding him in the name of the state to collect the several sums of money therein expressed against each person's name, by such time as by law is limited; and when collected to pay the same unto him or his successor in said office.
Sec. 10. If any person being legally taxed in any town shall neglect or refuse to pay such tax, it being by the officer to whom such tax shall be committed to collect legally demanded of him, in case no estate real or personal can be found by such officer to attach or distrain sufficient for the payment thereof, he shall be by such officer committed to the jail in the county, there to remain without any allowance for his support until he shall pay the sum assessed on him with the cost, or be otherwise discharged according to law.
Sec. 11. When any person shall be taxed in one town and remove into another before his tax shall be collected, then it shall be lawful for the collector of taxes to follow such person into any town, and there levy and collect such tax as fully and effectually to every intent and purpose as if such person had not removed out of the town wherein he was taxed.
Sec. 12. Every collector of taxes is hereby empowered to remove stock or other property by him distrained for the non-payment of taxes, to any part of the state where the same may be sold to the best advantage; and a sale thereof at public auction, in the place to which the same shall be removed as aforesaid, after due notification, shall be as good and valid in law as though the same had been sold in the town where the said stock or property was distrained.
Sec. 13. The taxes assessed upon all unimproved lands, the owners of which do not reside within the state, and upon all improved lands whereof neither the owner or occupant live within this state, shall be levied by the sale of so much of the said land as will pay the said tax, after public notice has been given twenty days in one of the newspapers printed in this state, near the lands so assessed, by the collector of taxes of the town in which such land lies; and if the owner thereof neglect to pay the tax so assessed and levied upon his land, with the cost of notification, by the time limited in the notification in said newspaper, then and in such case the collector of taxes shall sell so much of the said land at public auction to the highest bidder as will be sufficient to pay said tax and the cost of notification.
Sec. 14. If any person being legally taxed in any town shall go to sea or depart out of this state, leaving no property whereby his said tax may be satisfied, it shall and may be lawful for the collector of such town to cite the attorney, agent, factor, trustee or debtor of any such absent person before any justice of the peace of such town, to declare on oath how much of the estate of such absent person he hath, if any, in his possession ; and such attorney, agent, factor, trustee or