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REPORT

AND

OFFICIAL OPINIONS

OF THE

ATTORNEY GENERAL

OF

PENNSYLVANIA

FOR THE

TWO YEARS ENDING DECEMBER 31, 1914.

JOHN C. BELL,
Attorney General.

HARRISBURG, PA.:

WM. STANLEY RAY, STATE PRINTER

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REPORT OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL

FOR THE

Two Years Ending December 31, 1914.

Office of the Attorney General,

Harrisburg, Pa., January 1, 1915.

To the Senate and House of Representatives of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania:

I have the honor to submit a summary and report of the official business transacted by the Attorney General during the two years ending December 31st, 1914.

A report was submitted January 1, 1913, to the Legislature and this report is supplementary thereto, showing the summary of the activities of the Attorney General's Department under my administration since that date.

I have retained in their several positions the entire office staff except Hon. Wm. N. Trinkle, Third Deputy Attorney General, who resigned August 5, 1913, to become counsel to the Public Service Commission, Hon. Morris Wolf was appointed his successor, and was commissioned September 23, 1913.

SUMMARY OF THE BUSINESS OF THE ATTORNEY GEN-
ERAL'S DEPARTMENT FROM JANUARY 1, 1913,
TO DECEMBER 31, 1914.

Quo warranto proceedings in Common Pleas of Dauphin
County,

Equity proceedings in Common Pleas of Dauphin County, 15
In all other counties,
3
Actions in assumpsit instituted by the Commonwealth in the
Common Pleas of Dauphin County,

14

18

94

Actions in assumpsit brought by the Commonwealth against Boroughs to recover Penalties imposed for violation of the decrees of State Department of Health,

Actions in assumpsit brought against the Commonwealth of
Pennsylvania, defendant,

Actions in trepass brought against the Commonwealth of Penn

sylvania, defendant,

Cases stated for the determination of the Court,

Orders to show cause, etc., against insolvent companies and associations,

Mandamus proceedings in Common Pleas of Dauphin County,
Cases argued in the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania,
Cases argued in the Superior Court of Pennsylvania,
Cases argued in the Supreme Court of the United States,
Tax Appeals in the Common Pleas of Dauphin County,
Bridge proceedings under the Act of June 3, 1895, (P. L. 130),

and supplements,

Insurance charters approved by the Attorney General,..
Bank charters approved by the Attorney General,

....

Applications for sewerage approved by the Attorney General,
Formal opinions rendered in writing,

Que warranto,
Mandamus,
Equity,

Total,

Heard.

Cases now pending in the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania,.
Cases pending in the Superior Court of Pennsylvania, ...
Cases pending in the Supreme Court of the United States, ..

FORMAL HEARINGS BEFORE THE ATTORNEY GENERAL.

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Proceeding under Act of May 7, 1887, (P. L. 94),

Proceedings under Act of May 23, 1895, (P. L. 114),
Proceedings under Act of June 9, 1891, (P. L. 256),.

Collections for 1913,

Collections for 1914,

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$4,583,166.34 742,909.25

$2,326,075.59

Pursuant to the authority vested in me, and for which an appro priation was made by the General Appropriation Act of 1913, (P. L. 761), I appointed Paxson Deeter and John Hyatt Naylor, Esquires, special attorneys to collect the amounts due the Commonwealth for the support and maintenance of the insane, confined as indigents in various asylums of the Commonwealth, but who in fact have estates sufficient to pay in whole or in part, for their maintenance therein. This is the first systematic effort made to recover these sums and it promises much. A summary of the services performed by these gentlemen, is submitted herewith.

SUMMARY OF THE COLLECTION OF AMOUNTS DUE THE COMMONWEALTH FOR THE SUPPORT AND MAIN

TENANCE OF INSANE.

Investigations concerning estates of lunatics have been made in forty-four counties of the Commonwealth and collections have been made in twenty-two counties. Additional collections are pending in all these counties and in many of the other counties throughout the State.

From the reports made to me, I am of opinion that there is recoverable for maintenance of insane persons due the Commonwealth, up to January 1, 1915, not less than $500,000.00. Perhaps the sum would largely exceed that amount, and in the future, from the efforts heretofore made and those that are now in progress, there will be a probable annual return of not less than $100,000.00. Whatever is collected from this source will largely depend upon the amount of the appropriation made by the Legislature. The $5,000 appropriated by the last Legislature has long since been exhausted, but the attorneys employed have continued their efforts, depending upon the Legislature for a deficiency appropriation to reimburse them.

The work of these attorneys not only consists in the collection of the amount due, but also in ferreting out the information concerning the estates of the inmates of the various asylums who are presumed to be indigent. The appropriation of $5,000 made by the last Legislature was entirely inadequate and I therefore recommend that an appropriation for this purpose of $20,000, for the next two fiscal years, be made.

Amount collected up to Janurary 1, 1915, in sixty-nine

cases,

Average collection in each case,

$24,105.86 349.34

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