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executive or administrative officers may be absolved from legal responsibility for an act if it is according to the opinion of the attorney general. There being no way of locating and enforcing responsibility for official acts politically through a chief executive, it is thought that the thing to do is to make the law officer directly responsible through the electorate for his opinions. And so it is that in a large number of our irresponsible representative governments the law officer is elected. But it is also of interest to note that in all responsible representative governments the law officer is appointed, and in the federal government the attorney general is a member of the president's cabinet, removable at his will. There, whatever conclusion may be drawn with respect to the position of the president as chief executive, he is the only one that must go before the people to explain his acts, and must assume political responsibility for acts of the administration based on the opinions of the attorney general. What is of special interest is this: that a thousand opinions are asked from the law officer to one asked for from the courts; that under our system the law officer makes the law governing the administration of affairs; that making him politically independent gives to the executive another way of dodging political responsibility; that it is a conception of organization that finds its justification as a "check" in a government which has no politically responsible head.
Given a political system in which there is a real chief executive, then the political independence of the law office presents only vices with no offsetting virtues. The vices are found in the continuing development of "rep tape." When it would be in the interest of better administration to cut it, the executive is constantly confronted by adverse opinions of the law officer that makes it many times more difficult for him to exercise what would otherwise be perfectly good executive discretion. When a matter comes before the executive he must first decide whether he will assume responsibility for action without referring to the law officer for advice, or run the risk of an opinion which is adverse. And the disposition of the officer is likely to be adverse. The reason is obvious. The law officer has no political or other responsibility in common with the executive. He is always safe in saying that what has been done for years is in accordance with law, but, whatever be the business or administrative considerations which demand a departure from old practice, when he gives an opinion supporting such departure, he runs the risk of being attacked. And all the forces which link the old contingent, those who stand for continuing the ancient practice because of all of the personal interests, both inside and outside the government, that have become crystalized around it, are organized for the attack.
If any national or personal interest is jeopardized which is cognizable in a court of law, this interest may be amply protected, and the
law office as at present organized is simply one of the great negative forces in government—a negative force that in its operation is responsible for the construction of some of the most involved, unbusinesslike, ludicrous practices which, in a system that provides only for divided. powers and no effective central executive control, continue to become more involved and unbusinesslike with each added legislative requirement. Laws made by detached committees, procedures elaborated by detached bureaucracies; practices developed without controversy by construction "down the line "; situations arising that could not be foreseen demanding a change in practice; proposals referred to detached, irresponsible executives irresponsible so long as they do not make changes; references to a detached attorney general to avoid executive responsibility; the law officer for self-protection, doing the same thing-these are among the matters to be considered when deciding whether the constitution should provide for a responsible chief executive, and a law officer who will be constituted a general staff adviser.
An Employment Department
Already the function and purpose of a civil service department which would operate positively instead of negatively and be co-operative in the development of better conditions for employees and better conditions for management have been discovered as a part of Chapter IV. In this relation question is asked as to whether this department should not be so developed that there would be a close working relation between it and the officers charged with responsibility for preparing the budget, for making contracts for services other than personal, such as repairs, construction, printing, etc., and for decisions on matters of administrative law. Every request for departmental appropriations involves questions fundamental to civil service; one of the requisites to decisions as to whether the government will undertake its own repairs, constructing, printing, etc., is conditions governing employment; every decision having to do with proprietary matters may make it desirable to have friendly legal advice. Whether a cabinet system is considered or not, the question as to what will be the means of correlating all these activities dealing with proprietary matters-matters of finance, of purchase, of employment, as well as custodianship of funds and properties of the state-is squarely before the convention. If a cabinet system is favored, then question is raised as to whether the branch handling employment shall be made a department and the head given a place in the cabinet along with the attorney general and the finance officer-the three to constitute a proprietary and staff group in the cabinet, whose interests comprehend the entire administration, as distinguished from the public service group, each executive within which is interested in earning for himself applause by obtaining facilities for promoting a particular service.
ORGANIZATION FOR THE ADMINISTRATION OF MILITARY FUNCTIONS OF THE STATE GOVERNMENT
Whether from a sense of necessity, or due to the fact that more experience had been gained in the organization of this branch of the public service, before the adoption of the first constitution, provision for central direction and control over the administration of the military functions has been more fully developed than have the provisions for the central direction and control of the non-military public service functions of the government. From the beginning, the governor has been constituted the "commander-in-chief of the military and naval forces of the state" thereby being made the responsible leader with the power to direct and control. Since 1846 the governor has also been given an organization by means of which this responsibility may be discharged-an organization suited to the exercise of his executive powers. To assist the governor in the performance of his duty as head of the military forces, he is not only given the power but it is made his main duty to "appoint the chiefs of the several staff departments, his aide-de-camp and military secretary, all of whom shall hold office during his pleasure." And the duty is imposed on the legislature to appropriate a sufficient amount to cover the military expenses. This later provision was also made constitutional law in 1846, and has since remained. Especial attention is called to the fact that the constitution definitely contemplates that the governor shall have "staff" departments, and shall be given the overhead personnel and organization for keeping in touch with military activities. Whereas in the civil departments no such constitutional provision has been made, except in providing a "civil service" recruiting organization, and for two years a staff department called the "department of efficiency and economy."
The "administration" of the military government of the state has at all times been considered as an organization separate and distinct from the civil government, and having no point of contact with civil government except in a common executive, a common treasurer, and legal adviser, the attorney general. From the beginning, it has been based on the idea of a citizen soldiery, it being declared in the constitution of 1777 that "it is the duty of every man who enjoys the protection of society to be prepared and willing to defend it." The exception made in the first three constitutions was of persons who had conscientious scruples against military service, who might be excused by paying an exemption fee that in 1728 was fixed at ten pounds ($50.00) per year. The constitution of 1894 made "all ablebodied male citizens between the ages of eighteen and forty
five years, who are residents of the state members of the state militia. The first constitution provided for the storage of military equipment and supplies in each county in the thought that the inhabitants would organize themselves for military practice, thereby keeping themselves in preparedness, and show their willingness to perform military service.
While the government has a right to impress persons into military service, it has usually been revolutionary, and the original concept of military organization was that it should be thoroughly democratic. The persons who came together for the purpose of defense organized themselves just as they would for any other purpose, being empowered to select their own officers. This early practice was incorporated in the constitutions of 1821 and 1846. The provision with respect to election in 1821 being: "militia officers shall be chosen or appointed as follows-captains, subalterns, and non-commissioned officers shall be chosen by the written votes of the members of the respective companies; field officers of regiments and separate battalions, by the written votes of the commissioned officers of the respective regiments and separate battalions; brigadiergenerals by the field officers of their respective brigades; major-generals, brigadier-generals, and commanding officers of regiments or separate battalions shall appoint the staff officers of the respective divisions, brigades, regiments, or separate battalions." At this time, the governor with the consent of the senate appointed all major-generals, brigade inspectors, and chiefs of staff departments except the adjutant general and commissary general. The adjutant general, the administrative head of the militia was appointed by the governor, alone, though the commissary general was appointed by the legislature in the same manner as the treasurer, the attorney general, and the comptroller on nomination of the council of appointments. In 1894 the constitution was amended so that the legislature may pass laws for changing the mode of election and appointment of the military personnel, by a vote of two-thirds of each house. But it was specifically provided that the governor should nominate and with the consent of the senate appoint all major-generals, and that he alone should appoint and remove at will the adjutant generals and other staff officers, the military aid and secretary, so that these officers are placed beyond the power of the legislature to break down the control of the executive over the branches of the military service.
Specifically, the organizations charged with carrying on various subfunctional activities are:
1. The adjutant general's department.
2. The state board of armory commissioners.
3. The armory board of the city of New York.
4. The national guard.
5. The naval militia.
The Adjutant General's Department
Under the governor the adjutant general is the executive head of the military department. What is called his "department" is an organization for assisting him in carrying out his functions as chief administrator. The department is charged with issuance of orders, the auditing of militia accounts, the keeping of financial and military records, the receipt, custody and issuance of military stores, supplies uniforms and equipment, and the accounting to the federal government for government stores, and supplies issued to the state. In case of war, the adjutant would be responsible for organizing the reserve forces of the state, after the organized militia had been called into active service.
The State Armory Board
This organization, consisting of the commanding general of the national guard, the commanding officer of the naval militia, and the brigade commander in whose department the particular armory is situated, has general supervision of the construction and maintenance of the various armories of the state other than those, except two, within the city of New York.
The Armory Board of New York City
This organization, consisting of the mayor, the comptroller, president of the board of aldermen, president of the department of taxes of New York City, the commodore of the naval militia, and the two brigadier generals in command of the brigade stationed in New York City, has general supervision of the construction and maintenance of the armories owned and operated by the city of New York.
The National Guard and the Naval Militia
The national guard of the state of New York consists of the various organized regiments of infantry, cavalry, engineers, and artillery with their usual staff agencies. The naval militia consists of the organized naval forces of the state.
Relation of State Militia to the Federal Government
The military organizations of the various states have a dual allegiance which is recognized to the extent that the expenses of training and equipping the state troops are borne partly by the United States government, and partly by the state. The responsibility for the protection of any state from invasion having been assumed by the national government, the only important state duty for which the militia is liable for call is in the case of strike or riot.
The military functions of the militia are to cooperate with federal authorities against a national enemy and the entire program of training