Message of Governor James S. Hogg to the twenty-fourth legislature of Texas Page: 6 of 48
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MESSAGE OF GOVERNOR HOGG.
cal promotion, to know that the law forbids his becoming a candidate for
another office for a named period of years. His answer to the frequent
importunities to run for office will be sufficient when he replies that the
law forbids it. Thus his great public work will go on undisturbed, to the
honor of himself and benefit to the people. The law needs no amendment.
A simple act, providing for the election of the Commissioners,
in obedience to the late constitutional amendment, and declaring their
ineligility to other office for a short period of years, will be sufficient.
That the Commission case is settled, and there is peace between the
railways and the people, is a blessing to the whole State; and the law
executed clear of political design, on the one hand to prevent the confiscation
of the people's property by excessive traffic rates or taxes, and
on the other, so as to insure to the railway companies just rates that will
afford them a reasonable return upon their investment, will be productive
of untold benefit that must in time redound to the prosperity of every
legitimate interest within the State.
THE STOCK AND BOND LAW.
As a companion to the Commission Act, the railway " Stock and Bond
Law" may be next considered. This law, among other things, defines
corporate franchises, provides for making public the value of railroads,
and limits the aggregate amount of stock and bonds to be executed by
them to the value of the property to be affected thereby. This rule can
not be relaxed except by the consent of the Commission, and then only
in case of an emergency, on conclusive proof shown that public interests
or the preservation of the property of the company demand it; in which
event the stock and bonds in the aggregate may exceed, by consent of
the Commission, the value of the road to the limit of fifty per cent.
Clearly this law settles the following essential propositions:
1. That except on the conditions of emergency named, no railroad
constructed before the act took effect, can reissue bonds or execute new
ones in excess of the value of the property as established by the Commission's
experts, under the provisions of the law.
2. That no railway company can execute bonds on unfinished road,
and must expose to the Commission its property rights and construction
contracts to insure fairness to the public in the transaction.
3. That in the construction of new roads, and in the execution of all
indebtedness to be secured by lien on the property, good faith to the.
public and ample security to the creditor are the prime factors that the
Commission must jealously guard.
4. That to guarantee good faith and fair dealing in the execution of
railway bonds, the penalties inflicted for violations of the law are: first,
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Hogg, J.S. (James S.). Message of Governor James S. Hogg to the twenty-fourth legislature of Texas, book, 1895; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth5862/m1/6/: accessed July 27, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; .