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of Dauphin County, but before it was decided, settlements were made by the Auditor General and State Treasurer against various operators, and numerous appeals were taken to the Court of Common Pleas of Dauphin County. Three test cases, viz: Commonwealth vs. Adlen Coal Company, Commonwealth vs. St. Clair Coal Company, Commonwealth vs. Plymouth Coal Company, were heard and fully argued, but have not yet been decided.
Winston, Appellant, vs. Moore, et al., County Commissioners.
This was a case stated between certain tax payers of the city of Philadelphia and the County Commissioners for the City of Philadelphia, in which the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania intervened. It involved the constitutionality of the non-partisan ballot law of July 24, 1913, P. L. 1001. The Court of Common Pleas No. 1 of Philadelphia, sustained the law and it was affirmed by the Supreme Court. (244 Pa., 447.)
Henry Gerlach vs. Robert J. Moore, et al., Commissioners for the County of Philadelphia, Defendants, and the Commonwealth
of Pennsylvania, Intervening Defendant.
Henry Gerlach, a tax payer, filed a bill in equity in Common Pleas No. 4 of Philadelphia County, restraining the County Commissioners from expending funds of the county to make provision for the holding of the municipal court in Philadelphia County.
It involved the constitutionality of the Act of July 12, 1913, P. L. 711, establishing the municipal court of Philadelphia. The Court sustained the validity of the Act, and the Supreme Court affirmed it, in an opinion reported in 243 Pa., 603.
Commonwealth, ex rel., vs. City of Pottsville.
Since the last session of the Legislature, the Attorney General's Department has authorized the institution of proceedings in two cases involving the validity of the charters of cities of the third class, viz: the cities of Pottsville and South Bethlehem.
In the former case the validity of the charter of the city of Pottsville was attacked on the ground that the election upon the question of becoming a city of the third class had been ordered by the Court of Quarter Sessions of Schuylkill County, under the Act of April 15, 1907, P. L. 66, rather than by the Borough Council, under the Act of May 28, 1907, P. L. 268. Quo warranto proceedings were instituted in the Court of Common Pleas of Dauphin County at No. 2 C. D. 1914, and it was held by that Court that the Act of May 28, 1907, P. L. 268, was not inconsistent with and did not repeal the Act of April 15,
1907, P. L. 66, but that both acts were to be considered as amendments by the Legislature of 1907 of existing legislation providing for the incorporation and government of cities of the third class.
Judgment was entered against the Commonwealth and in favor of the city and its officers. Upon appeal by the Commonwealth to the Supreme Court, the judgment of the Court of Common Pleas of Dauphin County was affirmed in an opinion reported in 246 Pa., 468.
Commonwealth, ex rel., vs. City of South Bethlehem.
Quo warranto proceedings, at the relation of the Attorney General, were instituted in the Court of Common Pleas of Northampton County, at No. 28, February Term, 1914, requiring the city of South Bethlehem to show by what authority it claims to be a city of the third class and why its charter should not be vacated. This charter was attacked on the ground that the election by the electors of the former borough of South Bethlehem upon the question of becoming a city of the third class, was a special election held on the 22nd day of August, 1913, pursuant to the provisions of the Act of July 17, 1913, P. L. 694, providing that cities of the third class may be chartered whenever a majority of the electors of any borough having at least 10,000 inhabitants, shall vote at any special election in favor of the same. The constitutionality of this act was challenged upon the ground that it violated Section 1 of Article 15 of the Constitution providing that "cities may be chartered whenever a majority of the electors of any town or borough having a population of at least 10,000 shall vote at any general election in favor of the same." The case was so proceeded in, in the Court of Common Pleas of Northampton County, that a judgment in favor of the Commonwealth, non obstante veredicto, was entered; the said special election decreed to be null and void, and a judgment of ouster pronounced against the said city and its officers. An appeal from this judgment was taken by the city of South Bethlehem and is now pending in the Supreme Court.
Commonwealth, ex rel., Attorney General, vs. Neva R. Deardorff, No. 6, C. D. 1914, Common Pleas of Dauphin County.
This was a quo warranto proceeding in which the principal question involved was whether the Commissioner of Health of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania has authority to appoint a local registrar of vital statistics for the city of Philadelphia, or whether that city was, at the date of the approval of the vital statistics Act of 1905, within one of the provisos of that act, to the effect that in cities. where health officers or secretaries of local boards of health were officiating as registrars of births and deaths under local ordinances,
such officers should be continued as registrars of vital statistics in and for such cities. It was held by the Court of Common Pleas of Dauphin County that the city of Philadelphia was within the terms of said proviso. From this decision the Commonwealth appealed, and this appeal is now pending in the Supreme Court.
Alexander Martin, et al., vs. Bureau of Medical Education and Licensure.
This was a bill in equity filed in the Court of Common Pleas No. 4 of Philadelphia County, at June Term No. 4163, 1914, praying for an injunction to restrain the Bureau of Medical Education and Licensure from enforcing certain rules adopted by it for the purpose of regulating the practice of optometry in Pennsylvania. The main question involved was whether optometry is a branch of medicine and surgery. The said Court of Common Pleas No. 4 of Philadelphia County, held that practitioners of optometry were not practicing medicine or surgery, and granted the injunction prayed for. From this decision the Commonwealth has appealed and the appeal is now pending in the Supreme Court.
Commonwealth vs. Isadore S. Grossman and Joseph H. Reich.
In this case judgment was entered at No. 788, October Term 1913, in the Court of Common Pleas of Allegheny County, against the defendants, as sureties upon a bond given by Louis Amshel, under the private banking act of June 19, 1911, P. L. 1060. Amshel having been licensed as a private banker under the terms of said act, became insolvent and at the instance of the Commissioner of Banking judgment was entered in the sum of $15,000 against the above mentioned defendants, as sureties, upon his bond. Application was made by the defendants to the Court of Common Pleas of Allegheny County to strike off the judgment upon the ground that the private banking act of 1911 was unconstitutional. The rule granted by said court to show cause why said judgment should not be stricken off was, after argument, discharged in an opinion holding the said private banking act constitutional and deciding also that the defendants having taken advantage of the privileges of the act, would not be permitted to question its constitutionality. From the judgment of the Court of Common Pleas of Allegheny County, discharging the rule to strike off the judgment, the defendants appealed to the Supreme Court, which court in an opinion not yet reported, declared the act constitutional and affirmed the judgment of the court below
Pennsylvania Cold Storage and Market Company, et al., vs. N. B. Critchfield, et al.
This case originated in a bill in equity filed in the Court of Common Pleas of Dauphin County, to restrain the Secretary of Agriculture and the Dairy and Food Commissioner from enforcing the Act of May 16, 1913, P. L. 216, known as the "Cold Storage Law." The defendants attacked the law as unconstitutional, for various reasons. The case has been argued in the Court of Common Pleas of Dauphin County, but not yet decided.
JOHN C. BELL,