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shall then proceed to the assessment of their hundred; in the course of which, if they shall differ in opinion. as to the value of any parcel of land, or of other property, the medium between their two opinions shall be taken as the true value. And the same inequalities having arisen in the assessment of slaves in the several counties, and it being supposed that the assessment on this kind of property may be rendered much more equal by way of poll-tax, so settled, as to bear the proportion of one and a half per cent. to their average
value. Poll-tax on
Be it farther enacted, That'a tax of five pounds per slaves.
poll shall be paid for all negro and mulatto servants and slaves; but where any slave, through old age or bodily infirmity, shall be incapable of labour, and become a charge to the owner, the commissioners shall have power upon satisfactory proof thereof made 10 them, to allow and discount to such owner the said tax upon such slave; this discount to be made before delivery of the estimate to the sheriff who is to collect the tax: And if any person possessed of such slave or mulatto servant, shall wilfully conceal the same from the assessors, so as to avoid paying the tax required by this act, he shall forfeit and pay the sum of fifty pounds. And as doubts have arisen upon the construction of the last of the said two acts, whether it was intended that the tax of thirty shillings for every hundred pounds in possession on the first day of May, was intended to be paid for the present year, or not to begin till the next. It is therefore enacted, That the
said tax shall be paid for the monies of which any perTax on mo. ney.
son shall be in possession at sunrise, on the twentieth day of July next, and at sunrise on the first day of March, in each of the five next succeeding years; but that no tax shall be paid on the continental bills of credit of May the 20th, 1777, and April the 11th, 1778, whose currency was stopped before the first day of
May last by resolution of Congress. Tax on to.
And whereas, in conformity to the eleventh and sacco ex
twelfth articles of the treaty of commerce between bis ported. most Christian Majesty the king of France, and the
United States of America, all tobaccoes exported for the use of any of the West India islands, belonging to his most Christian Majesty, werė, by the said last recited act, exempted from any dạty or impost laid thereon
by the first recited act, and the said 11th and 12th articles
Appeals, July; for hearing appeals by the commissioners, shall when heard. be from the said last day of July, to the fourteenth day Lists of tasof August; for the delivery of the list of taxes by the able propercommissioners to the sheriffs, shall be the fifteenth day ty, when de of August; for making distress by the sheriffs on de- livered.
Distress for fault of payment of the taxes, shall be the fifteenth day taxes, when of September in any time after, but in every subse- Sheriff refu. quent year during the continuance of the present act, dertake col
shall be the same as directed by the said first mention- lection, ipso qed act. If any sheriff shall refuse to undertake the col- fucto depri
lection of the taxes, or shall refuse or fail to give, se- ved of office. curity for the due discharge of his duty therein, he shall stand åpso facto, deprived of his office, and the court shall likewise proceed to a new recommendation, and the person commissioned, in consequence of such recommendation, as soon as he shall have received his commission, shall have authority to proceed to the collection and appoint deputies to aid him therein, giving security as required by law, at the next court to be held for his county; and where it shall so happen, that payment hath been made to any sheriff in consequence of any assessment made in pursuance of the act of general assembly, for raising a supply for the current year, such sheriff shall account for the same with the person making such payment, and shall apply the same towards discharging the tax to be paid by this act, so far as such payment will extend, or return the overplus as the case may be. a And be it farther enacted, That the sheriffs or other money re. collectors, be authorized and directed to receive in pay- taxes.
ceivable in ment for all or any of the taxes imposed by this act, for the receipts given by the continental agent for paper
currency of the emissions of May the 20th, 1777, and
and the treasurer for the time being is also authorized and directed to receive the same in payment from the
several sheriffs or collectors aforesaid, Instead of the Allowanceto allowance of ten shillings by the day by the said commission- former acts to the commissioners of the tax, and to ers, assessors their clerk, they shall be entitled to the sum of thirty and clerk encreased. shillings each by the day, for their future services.
And instead of the allowance by the same acts to the assessors, it shall be lawful for the commissioners to give them any sum not exceeding thirty pounds each, for their services this present year. And to prevent inconveniencies in case of distress, levied for any of the taxes imposed by this act, It is hereby enacted,
That where such distress shall be made, and a sale in Surplus of consequence thereof, the surplus after paying the tax, proceeds of
any remain in the hands of the sheriff or collector, sale, for taxes, how dis- and the proprietor will not receive it upon tender to posed of, him, shall be accounted for, and paid by the officer
making such distress, into the hands of the cominissioners of the county for the time being, who shall pay the same over to their successours, to be applied in discharge (as far as such surplus will extend) of the taxes which may become due from the same person in the next or any succeeding year; bntsuch surplus shall be paid to the proprietor of the property if he will receive the same, and if the officer making such distress, shall neglect to tender the surplus to the proprietor of the effects, or pay the same over to the commissioners (in case of refusal by such proprietor) such officer shall forfeit
and pay the sum of five hundred pounds for his deFines, how fault. The fine or penalty incurred by this act, in any appropria- instance, shall be one half to the informer, or him who ted. will sue for the same, the other half to the common
wealth, to be 'recovered by action of debt in any court
of record. And be it farther enacted, That so much Part of for- of an act of general assembly, entitled “ An Act for pealed. raising a supply of money for publick exigencies;" and
of one other act, entitled “ An Act to amend an act entitled An Act for raising a supply of money for publick exigencies,” as comes within the purview of this act, is, and stands hereby repealed. And that this act shall be in force during the continuance of the said first mentioned act, and no longer.
An Act establishing a Board of [From Rexi
IX. p. 9.] BE it enacted by the General Assembly, That a Board of board of trade shall be constituted, to consist of three trade how persons not exercising commerce on private account, to
constituted. be chosen by joint ballot of both houses of assembly
at the first session of every assembly, and to continue : in office until the next choice shall be made; but any member
may be removed within that time by joint vote of both houses, and thereupon, as also on the death, resignation, or refusal to act of any member, they shall proceed to choose another in his stead, or if such death, resignation, or refusal, happen during Vacancies, the recess of assembly, the governour and council may
ed. appoint some person to act in the said office until the end of the next session of assembly; the members having in some court of record, or before some judge or justice thereof, given assurance of fidelity to the commonwealth, and taken the following oath: "IA. B. Oath of
members. do solemnly promise and swear, that I will faithfully, impartially, and justly perform the duty of my office of a member of the board of trade, according to the best of my skill and judgment. So help me God.” Any two of them may proceed to business.
Tlie duty of the said board shall be to see to the Duty, and procuring by importation or otherwise, all military powers of stores, clothing, accoutrements, utensils, materials, and necessaries, which shall be required by the governour, with the advice of the council, for the publick use, or for the use of the officers, soldiers, sailors and marines, raised under the laws of this commonwealth; taking care to send for such additional quantities as may provide against disappointments, happening by capture or otherwise; to procure salt, and cards for manufacturing cotton and wool, and distribute the same properly among the people of this commonwealth, at such prices only, as will reimburse the publick; where cargoes shall contain a considerable
proportion of the articles before mentioned, together with others not wanting for the publick use, and the same can only be bought by wholesale, or may be so
bought to better account, to purchase the said car. goes, and to sell again as diffusive as possible, such parts of them as are not so wanting; to make payment for the same in money, or in commodities, or bills of exchange to be purchased by them for that purpose, or in specie or bullion; to have them stored and safely kept until called for by the governour and council or board of warz to superintend and direct all persons and things employed in or about the said business; to superintend the publick manufactories of all articles, which by this act they are required to provide, to fit out, purchase, or charter vessels of burthen; or of dispatch necessary for fulfilling the purposes of this act,
or for carrying or procuring advices for government: Their pro. All the proceedings of the said board before they are ceedings subject to
carried into execution, shall be submitted to the governour and council for their approbation, amend
ment, or negative. How monies
The governour with advice of council, shall notify drawn from from time to time to the board of auditors, the sums the treasury, of money which may be necessary for the purposes of the board. before mentioned, who shall thereupon give their war
rant, or warrants, on the treasurer for the advance of such monies, to be regular debited and accounted for
in due time. Where the The said board shall sit at such place and in such board to sit, apartments, as the governour with advice of council vened.
shall direct; and if at any time they shall be separated,
and occasion for their meeting shall arise, the goverTheir clerk; nour shall have power to call them together: They oath of se. shall from time to time appoint their own clerk, or crecy.
clerks, who shall take an oath to keep secret all such matters as they shall direct to be kept secret; which oath may be administered by any member of the board.
controul of executive.