Message of Gov. J. S. Hogg to the twenty-third Legislature of Texas. Page: 25 of 28
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MESSAGE OF THE GOVERNOR. 25
Reformatory at Gatesville, and of the Orphans Home at Corsicana, are able,
interesting documents, well worthy careful perusal by the people's representatives.
Such appropriations as may be needed to maintain them up to the expectations
of a generous, philanthropic public, and to make such additions as may
be necessary to them severally, can be ascertained best from these reports
and by visits of legislative committees to the several institutions.
It would seem that in respect to habitual drunkards, who are no more nor
less than subjects of public charity and sympathy, the State has been more
or leps negligent. The time has arrived when it would appear expedient and
proper for the legislature to establish and have maintained an inebriate asylum
for the cure of drunkenness and reform of inebriates, authorized by the constitution.
A discussion of these subjects of charity and of pity, often the unwilling
charges upon the public through calabooses, jails and dungeons, certainly
becomes unnecessary through a public document. Reference to them
is enough. The observation of every citizen is sufficient. The duty of the
government cannot be mistaken. Its negligence must be admitted.
To support this institution in a way to avoid taxation on industry you are
respectfully advised to raise and apply revenue from the following sources:1.
From the surplus Department fees.
2. By collecting a special asylum tax, as high as may be necessary, from
the liquor dealers.
3. By an increased tax on every pool table, and every pool seller at
horse and other races.
4. By appropriating one-half of all the fines collected from vagrants of
every character, gamblers, prostitutes and gambling houses by State, county,
city, and town governments, requiring from those several authorities a.
prompt report and remittance from that source.
5. By charging reasonable expenses to all patients who may be able.
6. By authorizing to be kept a well bound-book as a roll of charity contributions,
in which shall be registered for public inspection the name and
address of each philanthropist, and the sum or thing contributed to the institution.
This asylum can be established and successfully maintained from the
sources indicated, and its beneficial effects on the public will be equal to that
of any other charitable institution in the State.
BOARD OF PARDON ADVISERS.
It has been an undisputed fact for many years that the burdens placed
upon the Governor, and the consequent delay of a full and fair investigation
of petitions of convicts in pardon cases, have been detrimental to public interests
The constitution vests in the Govenor the final power to grant pardons
and reprieves and to remit fines and forfeitures. For this reason a
Board of Pardons could not be created by the legislature.
There are now over thirty-six hundred penitentiary convicts, and about
two hundred in the reformatory. Of this number, 2179 have filed petitions
for pardon or commutation within the last two years before the Governor.
And there have been many applications filed also for the remission of fines
and forfeitures. After the disposition of 625, there yet remain 1554 cases
undisposed of. To state the condition suggests the necessity of a remedy.
You are therefore respectfully advised to pass a law creating a Board
of Pardon Advisers, to be composed of two reputable citizens; to be appointed
by the Governor, who shal, at stated times, or upon the call of the
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Hogg, J.S. (James S.). Message of Gov. J. S. Hogg to the twenty-third Legislature of Texas., book, January 12, 1893; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth5861/m1/25/: accessed May 21, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; .