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USE AND CARE OF PUBLIC PROPERTY.
Sec. 197. Inventory to be kept.
5438. Canceling, selling, and pledging 1624. Willfully stranding vessels.
public property. Unlawful destruction of pulilic 5439. Embezzling arms, stores, etc. property
5456. Robbery and larceny of personal Negligent strandirg of vessels.
property of the United States. Waste of public property:
Act Mar. 3, 1883. Stealing or wrongfully selling.
Use of water in public buildings Act March 3, 1875. Embezzling, etc.,
D. C. from United States.
Act Mar. 3, 1875. Payments, etc., for 3748. Selling uniforms and equipments.
public buildings. 5385. Arson of dwelling houses.
Act June 29, 1888. Injurious deposits for5386. Arson of armories, etc.
bidden in New York harbor. 5387. Arson of vessels of war.
SEC. 197. The Secretary of State, the Secretary of the Treasury, the Secretary of the Interior, the Secretary of Inventories of War, the Secretary of the Navy, the Postmaster-General, polytis, 1870, s. the Attorney-General, and Commissioner of Agriculture 1, v. 18, p. 361. shall keep, in proper books, a complete inventory of all the property belonging to the United States in the build
to a consent, any exceptions, reservations, or qualifications contained in the act are void. (Op., X, 35, May 6, 1861, Bates. See also Op., XV, 212. Devens, Mar. 27, 1877.)
A purchase of land by the Executive without the authority of law is an illegal act. (Op., XI, 201, Speed, Apr. 20, 1865.)
Where a contract is made for the purchase of property for Government purposes, and the head of a Department refuses to take it, the Attorney-General declaring the title defective, the contract is at an end. A succeeding Secretary can not reconsider except upon newevidence, ete. (Op., IX, 100, Black, Sept. 26, 1857.)
Compensation to district attorneys for examining titles proper. The amount may be agreed on in advance or fixed after the work is completed. (Op., XI, 433, Speed, May 8, 1876. See also Op., XIII, 15.)
The discretion given in an act to acqnire by purchase or condemuation a lot of land for a public building does not extend to acquisition" of adjoining land. Authority to purchase in the act does not include authority to acquire by condemnation. In statutes, generally, the word purchase is employed in a sense not techni. cal, only as acquisition by agreement with and conveyance from the owners without governinental interference. (Op., XVI, 226, Devens, May 14, 1879.) But this opinion was rendered before the passage of the act of Aug. 1, 1883, ante; under which author ity to purchase real estate for the Government carries with it authority to condemn.
The United States can not accept a cession of jurisdiction from a State coupled with a condition that crimes committed within the limits of the jurisdiction ceded shall continue to be punished by the courts of the State. (Op., VIII, 419, Cushing.)
See Op., IX, 528, and the Regulations of the Department of Justice, published in General Orders, War Department, May 13, 1881, concerning examination and evidence of titles of lands to be conveyed to the United States.
The act of a legislature of a State giving consent to the purchase of site for naval purposes is sufficient authority for the expenditure of money in its purchase, if the title is certified to. (Op., IX, 129. Black, Nov. 23, 1877.) It is such a cession of jurisdiction that is contemplated by the joint resolution of September 11, 1848. (Op., IX,
The term purchasr embraces any mode of acquiring property other than by descent. The Secretary of War can not accept a gift of land or interest in land, for any use or purpose, independently of statute authority. Public money can not be expended for the erection of a public bukding upon land donated to the United States, until the Attorney-General has passed the title and the legislature of the State granted jurisdiction. (Winthrop's Digest, 406. See also this Digest for other important decisions and rulings on the subject of public lands and property; and against the power of the heads of the executive departments to leaso, give away, or dispose in any manner of such land or property without authority of Congress. See also Op., IV, 480.)
Where land is donated to the United States for a site for a public building, for whicl: an appropriation was made by Congress: Held, That the consent of the legis. lature of the State to the grant is required before any part of the appropriation can be lawfully expended in the erection of the building. (Op., XVI, 414, Devens, Jan. 7, 1880.)
Lands purchased and reserreil by the United States for light-house, barracks, nary yards, and other like purposes are not included in the designation of " public lands." Lans so purchased or reserved are in law and in fact severed from the public domain, and no subsequent law or warrant authorizing the appropriation of "public lands" would be construed to embrace land so purchased or reserved. (Op., V,578, Aug. 1, 1852, Crittenden.)
An act appropriating for a movable dam impliedly anthorizes the purchase with the approval of the Secretary of War, of such land as is necessary for the construction of the dam. Payment of the purchase money may be made though the legislature of the State has not consented to the purchase. 'Expenditures for structures or improvements can not be made upon land already purchased until the consent of the State is obtained. (Op., XV, p. 212, Dorens, Mar. 27, 1877.)
ings, rooms, offices, and grounds occupied by them, respectively, and under their charge, adding thereto, from time to time, an account of such property as may be procured subsequently to the taking of such inventory, as well as an account of the sale or other disposition of any of such
property. Title 15,chap.16. SEC. 1624. ART. 4. The punishment of death, or such
other punishment as a court-martial may adjudge, may be isbable by death. inflicted on any person in the naval service
Willful strand Tenth. Or intentionally or willfully suffers any vessel ing or injury of vessel
of the Navy to be stranded, or run upon rocks or shoals, or improperly hazarded; or maliciously or willfully injures. any vessel of the Navy, or any part of her tackle, armament, or equipment, whereby the safety of the vessel is
bazarded or the lives of the crew exposed to danger; Unlawful de Eleventh. Or unlawfully sets on fire, or otherwise unlaw-struction of pub. lic property
fully destroys, any public property not at the time in posApr. 23, 1800, session of an enemy, pirate, or rebel; art. 17, v. 3, p. 47. Offenses pun.
ART. 8. Such punishment as a court-martial may adjudge: ishable at discretion ofcourt-mar. may be inflicted on any person in the Navytial.
Negligent Eleventh. Or through inattention or negligence, suffers stranding
any vessel of the Navy to be stranded, or run upon a rock or shoal, or hazarded;
Waste of pub Fifteenth. Or wastes any ammunition, provisions, or other lic property, etc.
Apr. 23, 1800, public property, or, having power to prevent it, knowingly art. 13, v. 2, p. 47.
permits such waste; Crimes of fraud. ART. 14. Fine and imprisonment, or such other punish
ment as a court-martial may adjudge, shall be inflicted upon any person in the naval service of the United States,
Stealing, wrong Who steals, embezzles, knowingly and willfully misapprofully selling, etc.
priates, applies to his own use or benefit, or wrongfully and knowingly sells or disposes of any ordnance, arms, equipments, aminunition, clothing, subsistence stores, inoney or other property of the United States, furnished or intended
for the military or naval service thereof; or Buying public Who knowingly purchases, or receives in pledge for any wrilitary prop obligation or indebtedness, from any other person who is a
Mar. 2, 1863, s. part of or employed in said service, any ordnance, arms, 1, v. 12, p. 565.
equipinents, ammunition, clothing, subsistence stores, or other property of the United States, such other person not,
having lawful right to sell or pledge the same; Mar. 3, 1875. That any person who shall embezzle, steal, or purloin
Em bezzling, any money, property, record, voucher, or valuable thing: stealine; te whatever, of the moneys, goods, chattels, records, or propStates deemed erty of the United States, shall be deemed guilty of felony, felony; penalty. and on conviction thereof before the district or circuit court.
of the United States in the district wherein said offense: may have been committed, or into which he shall carry or bave in possession of said property so embezzled, stolen, or purloined, shall be punished therefor by imprisonment at hard labor in the penitentiary not exceeding five years,
or by a fine not exceeding five thousand dollars, or both, at the discretion of the court before which he shall be convicted.
SEC 2. That if any person shall receive, conceal, or aid Knowingly roin concealing, or have, or retain in his possession with coixing conceal, intent to convert to his own use or gain, any money, prop- etc., property of erty, record, voucher, or valuable thing whatever, of the States; penalty. moneys, goods, chattels, records, or property of the United States, which has theretofore been embezzled, stolen, or purloined from the United States by any other person, knowing the same to have been so embezzled, stolen, or purloined, such person shall, on conviction before the circuit or district court of the United States in the district wherein he may have such property, be punished by a fine not exceeding five thousand dollars, or imprisonment at hard labor in the penitentiary not exceeding five years, one or both, at the discretion of the court before which he shall be convicted; and such receiver may be tried either before may be tried or after the conviction of the principal felon, but if the before or after party bas been convicted, then the judgment against him principal. sball be conclusive evidence in the prosecution against 18. p. 479.
Mar. 3, 1875, v. such receiver that the property of the United States therein described has been embezzled, stolen, or purloined.
SEC. 3748. The clothes, arms, military outfits, and accouterments furnished by the United States to any soldier shall not be sold, bartered, exchanged, pledged, loaned, or equipments: given away; and no person not a soldier, or duly author- 23, v. 12, p. 735. ized officer of the United States, who has possession of any such clothes, arms, military outfits or accouterments, so furnished, and which have been the subjects of any such sale, barter, exchange, pledge, loan, or gift, shall have any right, title, or interest therein; but the same may be seized and taken wherever found by any officer of the United States, civil or military, and shall thereupon be delivered to any quartermaster, or other officer authorized to receive the same. The possession of any such clothes, arms, military outfits, or accouterments by any person not a 'soldier or officer of the United States shall be presumptive evidence
a sale, barter, exchange, pledge, loan, or gift. SEC.5385. Every person who, within any fort, dock-yard, Title 70, chap. 8. navy-yard, arsenal, armory, or magazine, the site whereof Arson of dwellis under the jurisdiction of the United States, or on the ing house within site of any light-house, or other needful building belonging Mar: 3, 1825, 8. to the United States, the site whereof is under their juris.
1, v. 4, p. 115. diction, willfully and maliciously burns any dwelling-house, or mansion-house, or any store, barn, stable, or other build. ing, parcel of any dwelling or mansion-house, shall suffer death,
SEC. 5386. Every person who, in any of the places men. tioned in the preceding section, maliciously sets fire to, or Ibid, 8.2. burns, any arsenal, armory, magazine, rope-walk, shiphouse, warehouse, block-house, or barrack, or any storehouse, barn, or stable, not parcel of a dwelling-house, or any other building not mentioned in such section, or any vessel built, or begun to be built, or repairing, or any light
Arson of armo. ry, arsenal, etc.
Mar. 2, 1863, 88.
house, or beacon, or any timber, cables, rigging, or other materials for building, repairing, or fitting out vessels, or any pile of wood, boards, or other lumber, or any military, naval, or victualing stores, arms, or other munitions of war, shall be punished by a fine of not more than five thousand dollars, and by imprisonment at hard labor not more than
ten years. Arson of vessel SEC. 5387. Every person who maliciously sets on fire, or Ibid, s.11, p. 117. burns, or otherwise destroys, any vessel of war of the United
States, afloat on the high seas, or in any arm of the sea, or in any river, haven, creek, basin, or bay within the admiralty jurisdiction of the United States, and out of the jurisdiction
of any particular State, shall suffer death. Title 70, chap. 5. SEC, 5438. Every person * * who, having charge,
Concealing, possession, custody, or control of any money or other public pledging public property used, or to be used, in the military or naval service, property, etc. who, with intent to defraud the United States or willfully to 1-3, v. 12, pp. 696- conceal such money or other property, delivers or causes See seus. 3490, to be delivered, to any other person baving authority to 34 91, under receive the same, any amount of such money or other prop
erty less than that for which he received a certificate or took a receipt, and every person authorized to make or deliver any certificate, voucher, receipt or other paper certifying the receipt of arms, ammunition, provisions, clothing, or other property so used or to be used, who makes or delivers the same to any other person without a full knowledge of the truth of the facts stated therein, and with intent to defraud the United States, and every person who knowingly purchases or receives in pledge for any obligation or indebtedness from any soldier, officer, sailor, or other person called into or employed in the military or naval service any arms, equipments, ammunition, clothes, military stores, or other public property, such soldier, sailor, officer, or other person not having the lawful right to pledge or sell the same, every person so offending in any of the matters set forth in this section shall be imprisoned at hard labor for not less than one nor more than five years, or fined not less than one thousand nor more than five thousand
dollars. Embezzling SEC. 5439. Every person who steals or embezzles, or arms.stores, etc. knowingly applies to his own use, or who unlawfuly sells,
conveys, or disposes of, any ordnance, arms, ammunition, clothing, subsistence, stores, money, or other property of the United States, furnished or to be used for the military or naval service, shall be punished as prescribed in the pre
ceding section. Robbery or lar. SEC. 5456. Every person who robs another of any kind or ceny erf personal description of personal property belonging to the United
States, or feloniously takes and carries away the same, shall 14, p. 557.
be punished by a fine of not more than five thousand dollars, or by imprisonment at hard labor not less than one nor more than ten years, or by both such fine and imprisonment.
Mar. 2, 1867, v.
to be shut ofl.
See note 1.
All officers in charge of public buildings in the District Mar. 3, 1888. of Columbia shall cause the flow of water in the buildings Flow of water under their charge to be shut off from five o'clock post
[Sundry civil meridian to eight o'clock ante meridian : Provided, That act.] the water in said public buildings is not necessarily in use for public business.
And hereafter no money shall be paid nor contracts made Mar. 3, 1875. for payment for any site for a public building in excess Ch. 130, v. 18, p. of the amount specifically appropriated therefor; and no
Payments, conmoney shall be expended upon any public building on tracts, etc., for which work has not yet been actually begun until after
public buildings. drawings and specitications together with detailed estimates of the cost thereof, shall have been made by the Supervising Architect of the Treasury Departmert, and said plans and estimates shall have been approved by the Secretary of the Treasury, Secretary of the Interior, and the Postmaster-General; and all appropriations made for the construction of such building shall be expended within the limitations of the act authorizing the same or limiting the cost thereof; and no change of said plan involving an increase of expense exceeding ten per centum of the amount to which said building was limited shall be allowed or paid by any officer of the Government without the special authority of Congress.
Note 1.—The Secretary of the Navy has no authority to grant permission to a city to extend a newer through the public grounds so as to confer any legal title or right upon the city to maintain the sewer through the grounds. A mere license for the use of the premises is revocable at all times. A legal right to construct and main. tain a sewer would have to be granted by Congress. Op., XVI, 152, Oct. 1, 1878, Devens.)
Territory over which exclusive jnrisdiction has been ceded to the United States is subject only to the laws of Congress. Where land is granted by a State to the General Government, reserving a concurrentjurisdiction in executing process within for offenses committed without such tract, the United States have exclusive jurisdiction of offenses committed within the ceded territory. The purchase of land by the General Government for public purposes within the territorial limits of a State, does not, of itself, oust the Stato jurisdiction therein. Exclusive jurisdiction is the necessary attendant on exclusive legislation. When, therefore, a State legisla:ure has given its consent to a purchase of land by the General Government for the purposes enumerated in the Constitution, the State jurisdiction is completely ousted. (Brightley's Federal Digest, pp. 147, 148, giving numerous authorities and decisions of the courts.)
An officer in command of a military post has the right to protect it by force from occupation or injury at the hands of trespassers. One caution should be observed, however, that in executing this duty there should be no unnecessary or wanton harm done either to persons or property. (Op., IX, 476, Black, Sept. 24, 1860.)
Where tlle Government executes a lease with a full knowledge of the condition of the building leased and with no agreement that the lessor sball make repairs it can not make them at his expense. (C. C., IV, 526.)
Premises occupied by the Government under an implied leaso; claim presented, which is reduced and paid, owner accepting and receipting without protest. He is excluded from afterward seeking to recover the difference. (C.C., VIII, 521.) Where there is an express agreement to repair, tenant is liable for loss by accidental fire. Liability attaches although there be no express covenant as to fire. Otherwise where there is no agreement to keep in repair (C.C., IX, 179). Premises rented at a specitic rato per month, after expiration of a year lessee notitied lessor that the rent must be reduced. The lessor allows the lessee to continue, receiving monthly rent at the reduced rate and giving receipts therefor in full. He thereby consents to change in the original contract (C.C., V, 508.)
Where the President has given permission to a railroad or a telegraph company to run lines through the public property, the license is revocable at his pleasure. (Op., XVI, 205, Devens, Nov. 22, 1878.)
Persons who reside on lands purchased by or ceded to the United States, forts and arsenals, and where there is no other reservation or jurisdiction to the State than that of a right to serve civil and criminal process on such lands, are not entitled to the benefits of common schools for their children in the towns in which the lands are situated; nor are they liable to be assessed for their polls and estates to Stato, county, and town taxes in such towns; nor do they gain a settlement in such towns for themselves or their children by a residence for any length of time on such lands; nor do they acquire by residing on such lands any elective franchise as inhabitants of such towns. (Supremo court of Massachusetts, 1 Metcalf, 580, quoted in Op., XVI, 468, Devens, Feb. 7, 1880.)