Acts of the Legislature of West Virginia
(House Bill No. 598 - Mr. Heaberlin.)
AN ACT creating the municipal corporation of the City of Beckley, in the county of Raleigh, and annulling the charter granted to the said City of Beckley by chapter one, acts of legislature of West Virginia, extra session, one thousand nine hundred and eight, passed on the fourteenth day of February, one thousand nine hundred and eight.
[Passed April 26, 1927. In effect ninety days from passage. without the approval of the Governor.]
Became a law
1. City of Beckley to be body corporate.
2. City boundaries.
3. May be divided into wards.
4. City officers.
5. Council to exercise corporate powers.
6. Elective and appointive officers.
7. Engineer and chief of police; compensation.
8. Qualifications of officers.
9. Who may vote.
10. Nomination of candidates; elections.
11. Tie vote.
12. Contested elections.
13. Vacancies in office.
14. Official oaths.
15. Bonds required of officers.
16. Terms of office.
17. Mayor; powers and duties.
18. Recorder; duties.
19. Police court and its jurisdiction.
20. Same; powers and duties; appeals, costs and fees, docket.
21. Council; general powers.
22. City solicitor; duties.
23. Chief of police; duties.
24. Chief of fire department.
25. Assessor; duties of.
26. Health officer; duties of.
27. Streets and roads. Residents exempt from county road tax.
28. Ordinances; retain existing.
29. Bond issues.
31. Quorum of council..
32. Salaries; officials interest in contracts.
33. City not to incur debt.
34. Meetings of council.
35. Disbursing funds.
36. City records as evidence.
37. Oaths and acknowledgments; who may administer.
38. Improvements; assessment and lien for.
40. General laws; what applicable to city.
Be it enacted by the Legislature of West Virginia:
Section 1. That the inhabitants of that portion of Raleigh county, in the state of West Virginia, included within the boundary described in section two of this act, now a municipal corporation, existing and known as the City of Beckley, shall continue to be a body politic and corporate under the same name, and as such shall have perpetual succession; may use a corporate seal; may sue and be sued; plead and be impleaded; contract and be contracted with; purchase, sell, lease and hold real estate and personal property, necessary to the purpose of said corporation.
Sec. 2. The corporate limits of the City of Beckley shall hereafter be as follows:
Beginning at a point where the corporate limits of the town of Beckley and the corporate limits of the town. of Atkinsville intersected, near Wildwood cemetery, in the year one thousand nine hundred and eight; thence with the eastern corporate limits of said town of Atkinsville to where said corporate limits of said town of Atkinsville intersected with the corporate limits of said town of Beckley in the year one thousand nine hundred and eight, at a point southeast of the eastern end of Sixth street of Lilly Land Company's Addition No. 2; thence a straight line to a point in the southern edge of Chesapeake & Ohio railroad right of way, opposite Beckley Junction and approximately opposite the intersection of Cova street with said right of way; thence with the western line of what was formerly known as the Piney River & Paint Creek railroad right of way to a set stone, marked "City of Beckley," near the intersection of Central avenue and Pike street; thence north nine degrees, east two thousand one hundred and forty- three and twenty-eight one hundredths feet to a set stone near the Harper road, marked "City of Beckley"; thence north thirty-two degrees thirty-seven minutes east one thousand six hundred and twelve and eighty-two one hundredths feet to a set stone, marked "City of Beckley", on Reservoir Hill; thence north forty-nine degrees and eight minutes east one thousand eight hundred and forty-five and seventy-five one hundredths feet to a set stone, marked "City of Beckley", on the northern edge of Paint street, approximately in front of the school building; thence north eighty degrees and fifty minutes east one thousand two hundred and thirty-six and three one hundredths feet to a set stone located in the western boundary line of said Piney River & Paint Creek railroad right of way, marked "City of Beckley," thence in a northeasterly direction with the western boundary line of said right of way to a point where White Stick creek intersects with said right of way; thence a straight line to the forks of the road in Johnstown, near the Cooper residence; thence a straight line to the beginning.
Sec. 3. If at any time the common council of said city shall deem it necessary, they may divide the territory of said city into not less than four nor more than six wards, having due regard to the density of population of the territory embraced in each ward and the equalization of the population of the several wards, and they may from time to time change the boundaries of the respective wards so as to equalize the number of inhabitants of each ward as near as may be practicable;
provided, however, that no wards shall be created or change made in their boundaries within sixty days next preceeding any municipal election.
Sec. 4. The municipal authorities of said city shall be a mayor, recorder, police judge and five councilmen until the city shall be divided into wards as provided by section three of this act, then each ward shall have one councilman, who shall be elected by the qualified voters therein, and one councilman shall be elected at large by all of the qualified voters of the city.
Sec. 5. All the corporate powders and functions pertaining to said city shall be exercised by its council, or under its authority, in the corporate name of said city, unless otherwise provided by state law or municipal ordinance.
Sec. 6. The mayor, recorder and councilmen shall be elected by the qualified voters of said city. All other officers of said city shall be nominated by the mayor, and he shall, by and with the advice and consent of the council (a majority of all the councilmen elected concurring by yeas and nays), appoint all officers whose offices are established by this act. No person, after being rejected by the council, shall be again nominated for the same office, unless at the request of the council.
Sec. 7. The mayor shall nominate a city engineer, chief of police and in his discretion a police judge, and any additional police officers he may deem necessary, city attorney, chief of fire department, building inspector, and all other officers whose offices may be established by ordinance of the city council or by this act, and such officers shall hold the respective offices to which they are appointed during the will and pleasure of council, except police officers, inembers of the fire department and police judge who may be removed at will by the mayor, or for incompetence, misfeasance or neglect of duty, or other good cause by the council, or until their successors are appointed and qualified. The several offices, or any two or more may be held by the same person, provided the mayor and councilmen shall not be eligible to any of the appointive offices, and such officers shall receive such compensation as the council may prescribe, by ordinance or order, unless said compensation be fixed by this act, and the same shall not be increased or diminished during the term for which the appointment was made.
Sec. 8. No person shall be eligible to the office of mayor, recorder or councilman unless at the time of his election he is legally entitled to vote in the city election for member of the common council; and he was for the preceding year assessed with taxes upon real or personal property within the said city of the assessed aggregate value of at least three hundred dollars, and shall actually have paid the taxes so assessed; provided, that when the city shall have been laid off into wards, no person shall be elected as a councilman from any ward unless he shall have been. for at least sixty days next preceding the election a bona fide resident of the ward for which he is elected, and the removal of a councilman from the ward from which he is elected shall vacate his office.
Sec. 9. Every male and female person residing in said city shall be entitled to vote for all officers elected under this act, except any person who is a minor, or of unsound mind, or a pauper, or who is under conviction of treason, or bribery in an election, or who has not been a resident of this state for one year and of said city for six months next preceding the election at which he desires to vote, shall be permitted to vote therein; provided, that when said city shall have been laid off into wards no person therein shall be entitled to vote for a councilman from his ward unless he shall have been a bona fide resident of such ward for at least sixty days next preceding the municipal election.
Sec. 10. All nominations shall be made by conventions or primaries duly called, and all nominations for public office in the city shall be closed ten days before election, and it shall be the duty of said recorder of said city of Beckley to certify and enter of record all such nominations, and no person whose nomination has not been so certified shall be eligible to be voted for, for any office within said city. The first election hereunder shall be held on the first Tuesday in October, one thousand nine hundred and twenty-seven, and other elections hereunder shall be held on the first Tuesday in October every two years thereafter, and the term of office shall begin on the first day of January thereafter and such election shall be conducted under and by the direction of the council of the said city. The mode of voting shall be by ballot, but the voters shall be left free to vote an open or secret ballot, as they may elect. The election in said city shall be held and conducted and the result thereof certified, returned and finally determined under the laws in force in this state relating to general elections, except that the persons conducting said election shall, on the day the election is held deliver the ballots, tally sheets and poll books to the recorder for safe keeping, and thereafter the council of said city shall meet within five days (Sunday excepted) after said election and canvass the returns of said election, and declare the result thereof, and in all respects comply with the requirements of the statute of the state relating to elections. The corporate authorities of said city shall perform all duties in relation to such elections required by section eighty-five, chapter three of the code of West Virginia, one thousand nine hundred and twenty-three.
(a) Whenever the two political parties, casting the highest number of votes in the last preceding city election, shall desire to nominate their respective candidates by primary election, they, through their respective chairmen, shall, on or before the first day of September next preceding the election to be held on the first Tuesday in October, request the council, in writing, to call a primary election, and the council shall thereupon, on the first Tuesday in September, call a primary election for the second Tuesday in September, and at the time of making said call the council shall appoint three qualified voters as commissioners of election for each precinct in said city, in accordance with section seven, chapter three, of the code of West Virginia, one thousand nine hundred and twenty-three. The council shall appoint the commissioners of the general election on the fourth Tuesday in said month of September.
(b) When the city shall have been laid off into wards, each ward shall constitute a voting precinct, unless the council shall deem it advisable to divide it into two or more precincts. Whenever public convenience or the public good may require it, the council may, at any time, but not within thirty days next preceding any city election, change the boundaries of any precinct within the city or divide any precinct into two or more precincts, or consolidate two or more precincts into one, or change or designate any place of voting in any precinct, but there shall be but one voting place in a precinct.
All of the provisions of chapter three of the code of West Virginia, one thousand nine hundred and twenty-three, and the amendments thereof, relating to elections, are hereby adopted, so far as applicable, subject to the modifications contained in sections ten, ten-a and ten-b of this act.
Sec. 11. Whenever two or more persons receive an equal number of votes for mayor, recorder or councilman, such tie shall be decided by the council in existence at the time the election is held.
Sec. 12. All contested elections shall be heard and determined by the council in existence at the time the election is held, and the contest shall be made and conducted in the manner as provided for in contests for county and district officers, and the council by their proceedings in such cases shall, as nearly as practicable, conform with like proceedings of the county court in such cases.
Sec. 13. Whenever a vacancy from any cause shall occur in any appointive office, such vacancy shall be filled as provided by section six of this act; and, in case of vacancy in the office of councilman, recorder or mayor, the remaining members of the council shall fill said vacancy.
Sec. 14. The mayor, recorder and councilmen, and all other officers provided for in this act, shall each, before entering upon the duties of their offices, and within fifteen days after being elected or appointed, take and subscribe an oath to support the constitution of the United States, the constitution of the state of West Virginia, and to faithfully and impartially discharge the duties of his office to the best of his skill and judgment, and to account for and pay over, as required by law, all moneys which may come into his hands by virtue of his office.
Sec. 15. The recorder of said city shall be required to give bond before entering upon the discharge of his duties in such sum as the council may require, but not less than ten thousand dollars. The police judge shall, before entering upon the discharge of his duties, give bond in the sum of five thousand dollars. All members of the police force shall give bond before entering upon the discharge of their duties in the sum of not less than three thousand five hundred dollars. The council, may, in its discretion, require bond of any other officer of the city in such amount as it may prescribe.
All bonds, obligations or other writings taken in pursuance of any provision of this act or under the provisions of any order of said council, shall be made payable to the City of Beckley. Official bonds shall be conditioned to faithfully and impartially discharge the duties of such official's office and to account for and pay over, as required by law, all moneys coming into his hands by virtue of his office. All other bonds shall be conditioned as the council may prescribe.
The obligors, in all bonds, their heirs, executors, administrators and assigns, bound thereby, shall be subject to the same proceedings on such bonds, obligations or writings for enforcing the conditions or the terms thereof, by motion or otherwise, before any court of record having jurisdiction thereof, held or acting in or for said Raleigh county as the sheriff of said county, his deputies and their sureties. Such officials as are herein required to give bonds shall give corporate surety bonds. The premium on the bond required of the recorder and police judge shall be paid out of the city treasury.
Sec. 16. The mayor, recorder and councilmen shall enter upon the duties of their office upon the first day of January next after their election and their terms of office shall be for a period of two years. All appointive officers shall enter upon their duties as soon as they have qualified, and shall remain in office during the will and pleasure of the council, or mayor, as hereinbefore provided.
Sec. 17. The mayor shall be the chief executive officer of said city and shall have and exercise all of the rights, powers and duties of mayor conferred by the terms of this act, and it shall be his duty to see that the laws and ordinances of the city and the resolutions and orders of the council are enforced; that peace and good order of the city are preserved, and that the persons and property therein arc protected. In vacation of the council the mayor may appoint special police officers whenever he deems it necessary. He shall, from time to time, recommend to the council such measures as he may deem needful for the welfare of the city.
The mayor shall be the presiding officer of the council. In his absence, the council shall select one of their own number to preside in the mayor's stead, and such councilman so selected shall, during the absence of the mayor, be clothed with all of the power and authority of the mayor, limited to the same restrictions, and charged with the performance of the same duties as are vested in and incumbent upon the mayor under this act. The mayor shall only vote in council meetings in case of a tie.
Sec. 18. It shall be the duty of the recorder to attend all council meetings and record in a journal an accurate record of all of its proceedings, acts, orders, resolutions and ordinances, which shall be fully indexed and kept open during all reasonable hours for the inspection of the citizens of the city. The proceedings of last meeting shall be read to the council, corrected when necessary, and signed by the person presiding for the time being, and the recorder. Upon the request of any member, the ayes and nays on any question shall be recorded in the journal.
The recorder shall also be the custodian of all city records, money, bonds, notes, certificates, together with all valuable papers of every kind and character which may come into his hands under and by virtue of his said office, and he shall be chargeable with a.nd it shall be his duty to collect the city taxes, levies, assessments, fines and penalties under such regulations as the council of said city may, by ordinance, prescribe, and such recorder shall have the same powers and authority to distrain and sell property for delinquent taxes on personal property levies, assessments, fines and penalties in like manner and to the same extent and effect as authorized and prescribed by the laws of the state of West Virginia, for and respecting the collection of state and county taxes and levies.
The recorder shall furnish the council at each regular meeting, with a statement showing all collections made since last preceding meeting, and all disbursements during that time, as well as any other facts relating to the finances of the city as the council may require. He shall, in addition to the enumerated duties required of him under this act, do and perform such other matters and things as the council may, from time to time, prescribe or require of him.
All moneys coming into the hands of said recorder, shall be forthwith deposited by him in the name of the City of Beckley, in such of the local banks as the council shall designate as city depositories, and it shall be the duty of the council to contract with such banks to pay a reasonable rate of interest on the city's daily balances, for the use and benefit of the city. The council may require indemnity bonds of such depositories if it deems it advisable so to do.
It shall also be the duty of said recorder to make and have the council certify the delinquent list of real estate ill said city, as provided by section thirty-six, chapter thirty-nine, acts one thousand nine hundred and twenty-five.
It is hereby made the duty of the council to provide the recorder with suitable and proper office in which to transact the main duties of his office, and, if practicable so to do, such office shall be located in the city hall for the convenience of the citizens of said city; and when such office is so provided, it is hereby made the duty of such recorder to keep regular office hours from eighty-thirty o'clock A. M., to five o'clock P. M., of each day, Sundays and legal holidays excepted, unless absent from the office in the performance of business for the city.
Sec. 19. The judicial power of the city shall be vested in a police court. Said court shall have exclusive jurisdiction of all criminal proceedings for the violation of any city ordinance, and of all civil actions and proceedings arising out of a violation of said ordinance, and for the collection of any license, assessment or tax imposed by ordinance; and of the following offenses committed within the city (except when prosecuted by indictment or information): petty larceny, assault and battery, breaches of the peace, rioting, committing wilful injury to property, and all misdemeanors punishable by fine or by imprisonment in the county jail, or both; proceedings respecting vagrants, lewd or disorderly persons; and of all offenses not properly falling under the jurisdiction of other courts. No jury shall be summoned to try any case in said court.
Sec. 20. The police court shall be presided over by a police judge who shall be a practicing attorney of the Raleigh county bar, in good standing, and a citizen of the city of Beckley. In the absence of or in ease the mayor shall not appoint a police judge, the mayor shall act in that capacity in his place and stead, and all the provisions of this act with reference to the police judge shall be applicable to the mayor, except that of being a practicing attorney, but before doing so he shall give such bond as the council may require. The police judge shall within the city have, possess and exercise all the powers and perform all the duties vested by law in a justice of the peace, except that he shall have no jurisdiction in civil cases or causes of action arising outside of the corporate limits of the city. He shall have the same power to issue attachments in civil suits as a justice of the county has. though the causes of action arose outside of the city, hut if the cause of action arose outside of the city, said attachment shall be returnable to and be heard before some justice of the county. Any warrant or other process issued by him may be executed at any place in the county. He shall have the power to issue executions for all fines, penalties and costs imposed by him, or he may require the immediate payment thereof, and in default of such payment he may commit the party in default to the jail of the county or city until the fine or penalty arid costs shall be paid, but the term of imprisonment in such cases shall not exceed thirty days. The police judge shall also be vested with the same powers to issue capias profine as are vested in courts of record, the prosecuting attorney and circuit clerks, by virtue of section ten, chapter thirty-six of code of West Virginia, but no bond, taken pursuant to said section, shall be made payable more than ninety days from the date thereof, and the city shall have all the rights to enforce the collection of such bonds as are anthorized by said chapter thirty-six. The expense of maintaining any person committed to the county jail by him, shall be borne by the city and taxed as costs, except it be to answer an indictment.
He shall not receive any money belonging to the state or individuals unless he give such bond and security as is required of a justice of the peace, and all provisions of the said chapter fifty of the said code of West Virginia relating to moneys received by justices shall apply as to like moneys received by the police judge.
He shall have authority to sentence an offender to labor, upon the streets or at other public work of the city, in conformity with sections eleven and twenty-two of chapter thirty- six of the code of West Virginia, for a period not exceeding thirty days, except in cases where the statute, under which ordinance is drawn, gives the city jurisdiction and prescribes the penalty.
Appeals shall lie from the judgment of the police court to the criminal court or circuit court of Raleigh county, as the case may be, in accordance with law.
The police judge shall tax as costs in each case the same fees as are permitted to be. taxed by justices of the peace in like cases. He shall keep an accurate record of all of his proceedings in a book to be called "Police Docket", and all fines and costs collected by him shall be promptly turned over to the recorder, who shall thereupon receipt such docket for the fine and costs in each particular case; and such docket, together with an itemized statement of all fines and costs collected, shall be laid before the council at each regular meeting for its inspection, unless otherwise directed by the council. The police judge shall have the same powers to fine and imprison for contempt as are now vested in justices of the peace under the statute.
Sec. 21. The council of said city shall have the general powers enumerated in the sub-divisions of this section, as follows:
(1) To lay off, open, close, vacate or maintain public grounds, parks, public places, name and re-name the same, to have control and supervision thereover, to protect the same from damage or other injury by persons or property, to fix fines and punishments for any injury thereto in violation of any of the orders of said council, and to maintain good order and prevent violations of the ordinances of said city therein or thereon.
(2) To protect divine worship within the limits of said city, and to fix fines and punishment for disturbance of any assemblage of people, then and there, met for the worship of God, to prohibit any interference with or disturbance of divine- worship or an assemblage of people met together for the worship of God by any person or persons loitering about the premises or places where such worship is being had or such assemblage is met, or from loitering in the public streets or public places adjacent thereto in such manner as to interrupt such worship.
(3) To acquire either by purchase, condemnation or any other modes provided by general law, ground within said city for such streets and alleys as the council may deem proper to locate, lay off, vacate, close, open, alter, grade, straighten widen or narrow, pave or re-pave, construct and keep in good repair, the roads, streets, alleys, pavements, sidewalks, cross walks, drains, viaducts and gutters therein, for the use of the public or of any of the citizens thereof, and to improve and light the same and to keep the same clean and free from obstruction of every kind; that where said city shall be required to respond in damages by reason of injury to persons or property occasioned by the failure of any abutting owner to so provide or keep in repair any sidewalk along such property, after bring notified by the council so to do, that such property owner shall be liable to the city for any sum of money, costs and counsel fees which it has been required to pay by reason thereof.
(4) To regulate the width of sidewalks and the streets and the width and the care of the public grounds or grass plots abutting thereon, and to order the sidewalks, foot- ways, crossways, drains and gutters to be curbed, paved, or re-paved and kept in good order, free and clean, and to provide for the removal of snow and ice therefrom, and for sprinkling the same by the owners or occupants of the real property next adjacent thereto, and to provide and enforce punishments for obstructing, injuring or preventing the free and proper use thereof, and to provide and enforce fines and penalties for throwing therein or thereon any paper, glass, rubbish, decaying substances or other things that would make said streets, sidewalks, grass plots, crosswalks, drains, or gutters unsightly or unhealthy.
(5) To regulate the use of the walks, highways, bridges, streets, alleys and gutters, and the rate of speed of travel thereon, and to prevent and punish for fast, riding or driving thereon of any horse, bicycle, wheeled vehicle, wagon, steam or electric or traction engine, motor car or automobile, and to prevent injury to such streets, alleys, roads and highways from overloaded or improperly loaded vehicles where the council deems the public safety requires such regulation.
(6) To regulate the planting, trimming and preservation of shade trees, by persons and by corporations, in streets, alleys, roads, public grounds and places, and to require the owners of adjacent property to trim or remove any shade tree or ornamental shrubbery or other tree that in the opinion of the council is an obst[r]uction to the streets, alleys or sidewalks, or a menace to public safety.
(7) The council shall have the right to require the owner or occupier of any property in the city to keep his premises clean and free from all matters that would endanger the health of the city, and may require the removal of any waste paper or waste material of any kind or character upon the private property of any citizen or property owner that would cause the spread of fire or when the council deems the same should be removed; and may require the removal or straightening of any fence, wire, palings, or other material enclosing any lot, when, in the opinion of the council, the same is dangerous or obstructs or, encroaches upon the streets, alleys or sidewalks; provided, that in all such cases, if the owner or occupier of such property fails to do any of the things enumerated in this section required by the council, after notice by the council, the council may take such action as may be necessary to perform such acts and the expense thereof shall be charged to the property owner and collected as taxes are collected.
(8) To regulate the making of division fences of an unsightly nature and party walls by the owners of adjoining and adjacent premises and lots, in so far as the same shall not be in conflict with general law.
(9) To regulate or require drainage by the owner or occupier of any lot or other real estate, by proper drains, ditches, and sewers, and to require the owner or occupier of any lot to fill the same, at his own expense, so that writer will not collect in a body thereon, or so the same will not become a menace to public health.
(10) To regulate or prohibit street carnivals, or street fairs, or street parades, advertising exhibition, or other exhibitions thereon, or the exhibition of goods, wares, merchandise. material or artificial curiosities upon any street, sidewalk, alley or public place of the said town.
(11) To regulate or prohibit the ringing of bells, blowing of steam whistles, or use of hand-organs, or other instruments of an annoying character, or other music of itinerant performers in the streets, or public speaking and preaching in the streets, roads, parks, or public places of the municipality,
(12) To license, regulate or prohibit auctioneering.
(13) To license, regulate or prohibit the sale of goods, wares, merchandise, drugs or medicine on the streets or other public places.
(14) To prevent the illegal sale of tobacco, cigars, snuff, or cigarettes, within said municipality, and to prevent the smoking by any person under twenty-one years of age, of any cigarette, in any public building, or upon any public grounds, street, alley, sidewalk or public place within the said city, and to fix fines and punishments for violations thereof.
(15) To regulate, control or prohibit runners for hotels, boarding houses and eating houses, and to regulate draymen or persons hauling or transporting for hire at and about the railroad depots and stations and other public places and in an assemblage of people within the said city.
(16) To regulate, assess and collect a license fee for the said city for the doing of anything or business on which a state license is required, under chapter thirty-two of the code of West Virginia, and as said chapter may be hereafter amended or added to, subject to the exceptions provided by general law.
(17) To establish, when the council may deem proper, locate and keep in repair, market places, market houses, and regulate markets, prescribe the time for holding the same, to authorize the seizure thereat and destruction of any and all such foods and drink products, as shall be found unwholesome, dangerous or offensive, and without recourse against the municipality for its cost or value.
(18) To regulate the sale of food and drink products, milk, fresh meats, fish and vegetables, and to provide penalties for the sale of any such that are unwholesome or unfit for use.
(19) To regulate and provide for the weighing of hay, coal and other articles for sale in the markets, or to residents of said city.
(20) To require the merchants and other persons selling goods, foods or materials that must be weighed, to keep correct scales, to seize and destroy such as are found to be incorrect, and not corrected after due and proper notice to the owner or person using the same, without damage or expense to the municipality for the value thereof.
(21) To prevent injury or a-nnoyance to the public or individuals from anything dangerous, offensive or unwholesome.
(22) To regulate the keeping, handling and transportation of explosives and dangerous combustibles within the municipality; and to regulate or prohibit the use of fire-crackers, sky-rockets, toy pistols, air rifles or guns, within the said municipality.
(23) For the purpose of promoting health, safety, morals, or the general welfare of the city and community, the council is hereby empowered to establish building lines, regulate and restrict the location and use of buildings, structures and land for trade, industry, residence or other purposes,
(24) For any or all of said purposes the. council may divide the city into districts of such number, shape and area as may be deemed best suited to carry out the purpose of this act, and within such districts it may regulate and restrict the erection, construction, alteration, repair or use of buildings, structures, or land. All such regulations shall be uniform for each class or kind of buildings throughout each district, but the regulations in one district may differ from those in other districts.
(25) Such regulations shall be made in accordance with a comprehensive plan, and designed to lessen congestion in the streets; to secure safety from fire, panic and other dangers; to promote health and the general welfare; to provide adequate light and air; to prevent the over-crowding of land; to avoid undue concentration of population; to facilitate the adequate provision of transportation, water, sewerage, schools, parks, and other public requirements. Such regulations shall be made with reasonable consideration among other things, to the character of the district and its peculiar suitability for particular uses, and with a view to conserving the value of buildings and encouraging the most appropriate use of land throughout the city.
(26) To regulate or prohibit the use of walls or walks for signs; to regulate or prevent the distribution or posting of any sign, bill or other paper that, in the opinion of the council or mayor, is indecent or immoral.
(27) To define by ordinance what shall constitute a nuisance, and to abate all nuisances whether defined or not, and to require the removal or abatement of any building, obnoxious business, sign board, bill board, signs, or other thing, which in the opinion of the council is a nuisance.
(28) To regulate or prohibit the distribution of hand bills, circulars and other advertisements of like kind, on the streets, roads, alleys and public places, or the placing of same in private yards, buildings or other structures, without having first procured the consent of the owner or occupier of such property.
(29) To regulate or prohibit within the municipality or within one mile of its corporate limits, the erection or maintenance of any slaughter house, soap factory, glue factory, lamp black factory, tannery or other house, shop or factory of like kind or character.
(30) To regulate or establish within said municipality public drinking fountains and water troughs; and to regulate the time and place and manner of bathing in pools, streams and public waters within the police jurisdiction of said municipal corporation.
(31) To prevent hogs, cattle, sheep, horses, and other animals and fowls of all kinds, from going at large in the municipality; and to establish and maintain places for their detention, make regulations respecting the same, appoint a pound master and define his duties and provide for the sale of such property impounded.
(32) To arrest, convict and punish any person for committing adultry [sic] or fornication, or for any lewd or lascivious cohabitation within said city, and for keeping an assignation house, house of ill fame, or for leasing or letting to any other person any house or other building to be kept or used as such. or for knowingly permitting any house, under the control of or owned by any person, to be used as an assignation house or house of ill fame; and to convict and punish for frequenting, entering or loitering in any assignation house or house of ill fame within said municipality.
(33) To arrest, convict and punish any person for importing, printing, publishing, selling, giving away, exhibiting, or distributing any book, picture or device, or other thing containing any obscene picture or language, or making any indecent representation.
(34) To restrain, convict and punish vagrants, mendicants, beggars, tramps, common prostitutes, and their associates, and drunken or disorderly persons within the municipality, and to provide for their arrest and manner of punishment.
(35) To prevent and prohibit the use of indecent or profane language within the corporate limits, and to provide and fix punishment therefor.
(36) To prevent and prohibit any tumult, riot, quarrel, angry contention, or abusive language, and to prevent the use of insulting epithets, assaults, assault and battery, and fix fines and punishments therefor.
(37) To prevent and prohibit trespass upon private property or the doing of anything which would annoy the owner or occupier of any premises, and to fix and provide fines and punishments therefor.
(38) To provide against danger or damages by fire, and to that end, to require, when the council may think necessary, an inspection of all the properties within the said city, and to require the owner or occupier of any property in which a defective or dangerous chimney or flue is found, to immediately repair the same, and to prevent the use thereof until repaired as required.
(39) To prohibit and prevent intoxication or drunkenness, and the drinking of intoxicants in any public place, store, street, or alley, and to fix fines and penalties therefor.
(40) To prohibit, prevent and punish for anything that is against the good morals and common decency, or that would tend to corruption, vice or crime.
(41) To prohibit and punish for larceny where the amount stolen is less than twenty dollars.
(42) To protect the public schools in said city, and to prohibit and prevent any disturbance thereof in and about the buildings or upon the grounds, and to prevent injury, destruction or defacement of any school property or building.
(43) To establish a board of health and vest it with the necessary power to maintain its object, and to fix fines and penalties for any violation of its lawful orders.
(44) To establish quarantine, and to erect and maintain pest houses and places of detention, and to make and enforce necessary orders for controlling or preventing the spread of infections and contagious diseases, and for abating pestilences,
(45) To prohibit the bringing into the corporate limits by railroads, carriers, persons or in any manner, persons who are paupers or persons who are afflicted with contagious diseases; to punish by fine or imprisonment, or both, any person who shall bring into the corporate limits any such pauper or person afflicted with contagious disease, knowing or having reason to believe, at the time that such person is a pauper or afflicted with such contagious disease, and to collect and recover from any such railroad company, carrier, or other person, the expense of keeping and maintaining such pauper or diseased person, until such person can be lawfully removed from the corporate limits.
(46) To provide for the poor of the municipality, and to that end, the municipality may contract with the county court of Raleigh county for the keeping of such poor person, or any number of them, at the county poor house, at a price and on such terms as may be agreed upon between the county court and the proper municipal authorities.
(47) To authorize the taking up and providing for the maintenance and safe keeping of (for such period as may be deemed expedient) all children within said city who are destitute of proper parental and other care.
(48) To arrest, convict and punish any person for cruelty, unnecessarily or needlessly beating, torturing, mutilating, killing or overloading, or overdriving, or wilfully depriving of necessary sustenance, any horse or other domestic animal.
(49) To regulate the hitching of horses within the corporate limits, and the driving of cows and cattle through, upon and along the streets and alleys of the said city.
(50) To prohibit, prevent and punish for the pollution of any stream of water running into or through the said municipality; and to prohibit and prevent the throwing into any such stream of any trash, dirt, filth, offal, decayed substances or matters, or anything that would make said water unhealthy or unfit for domestic use,
(51) To prohibit, prevent and punish for any desecration of the Sabbath day; prohibit the playing of any game, exhibiting any show, theatre, picture show, and the keeping open of business places, except hotels, eating houses, boarding houses and restaurants.
(52) To restrain, prevent and punish fraudulent practices of any kind or character within the municipality.
(53) To arrest, convict and punish any person for gambling or keeping any gaming table, commonly called "faro bank", or table and chips used in playing such game; crap, crap table, chips or dice used in playing such game; or roulette or the wheel, chips, or other equipment used in playing such game; or keno table or table of like kind or device used in playing the same; or table of like kind under any denomination, whether the game or games be played with cards, dice or otherwise on which anything is bet or wagered, whether the same be played in any public or private room or residence; and may convict and punish any person who shall be a. partner or concerned in interest in the keeping of any such gambling devices heretofore enumerated, or in any game played, such as is prohibited hereby, or in keeping or maintaining any gambling house or place of gambling for money or anything of value; and shall have the right to destroy such gambling paraphernalia as may be found in use on any such premises; and any officer armed with a warrant for the arrest of any person engaged in any such unlawful game or for the search of any room in which gambling is suspected, or for the seizure of any gambling paraphernalia, shall have the right to break into any building, other than a private dwelling house, without notice or demand, and into a private dwelling or room, after demand and refusal to open same, to execute any such warrant.
(54) To restrain all felons and persons guilty of offenses against this state or the United States, and deliver them over to the authorities or court having jurisdiction of the offense whereof such persons is accused.
(55) To apprehend and punish any person who, without a state license therefor, is guilty of carrying about his person, within the municipality, any revolver or other pistol, dirk, bowie knife, sling shot, razor, billy, metallic or false knuckle, or any other dangerous or deadly weapons of like kind and character, as provided by chapter fifty-one of the acts of the legislature of one thousand nine hundred and nine, or any amendment thereof, and the punishment therefor, whether for the first or other offenses, shall be that now or hereafter prescribed by said chapter for any such person guilty under the misdemeanor clause provided therein.
(56) To regulate the hanging of doors, the construction of stairways and elevators, and require fire escapes in theatres, churches, school buildings, factories and other places deemed necessary by the council.
(57) To establish fire limits and to regulate the construction of buildings, and designate materials to be used in the construction of buildings within such limits.
(58) To regulate the building of fire walls, fire places, chimneys, boilers, smoke stacks, stove pipes, and the burning of waste paper, trash or other waste matter, in the corporate limits.
(59) To require any building that, in the opinion of the council, is dangerous, to be repaired, altered or removed by the owners thereof, or put in a safe condition, such as the council may approve, at the expense of such owner or occupier, and to provide punishments for failure to comply with any order of the council concerning same.
(60) To regulate the construction and inspection of all new buildings hereafter erected, the alteration and repair of any buildings now or hereafter erected, to require permits to be obtained of the council therefor, and the submission of plans and specifications to the council for its approval; to regulate the limits within which it shall be lawful to erect any steps, porticos, bay windows, awnings, signs, columns, piers, or other projection or structural ornaments of any kind for the houses or buildings on any street or alley.
(61) To provide for the prevention and extinguishing of fires, and for this purpose, the council may equip and govern fire companies, prescribe the powers and duties of such companies and departments, and of the several officers thereof, or may authorize volunteer fire companies, under such rules and regulations as the council may prescribe, and impose on those who fail to obey any lawful command of the officer in charge of any such company, or volunteer company, any penalty which 'the council is authorized to impose for violation of an ordinance, and to give authority to any such fire officer to direct the pulling down or destruction of any building, fence, wall or other thing, if such officer deem it necessary to prevent the spreading of any fire which is being extinguished under the direction of such officer, and without any liability on the municipality for damages therefor.
(62) To protect the persons and property within the corporate limits and preserve the peace and good order therein, and for this purpose, to appoint, when necessary, a police force and such other officers as may be deemed necessary; and to provide a lockup, jail or other suitable place to confine persons sentenced to imprisonment for violation of the ordinances of said city; provided, however, that the jail of Raleigh county may be used for that purpose, if authorized by the county court of said county.
(63) To require any person violating any of the ordinances of said city, or any order for which a fine, imprisonment or both is imposed, to work upon the streets of said city in case of nonpayment of said fine, until the same is paid by such labor, or in case imprisonment is imposed, to work upon the streets of said city during the term of such imprisonment in addition to the payment of such fine, under such regulations as the council may prescribe.
(64) To prescribe the powers, define the duties of the officers appointed under the corporate authority, fix their terms of service and compensation, if not otherwise prescribed by this act, and to require and take from them bonds, when deemed necessary, payable to the City of Beckley, with the sureties, and in such penalties as may be prescribed, conditioned for the faithful discharge of their respective duties.
(65) To make regulations with respect to, and have supervision and control over the erection, removal and relocation of all telephone, telegraph, electric light or other poles within said city, and the extension of wires, lines or poles by any individuals or corporations.
(66) To require the enlarging or extension of any electric light wire, telephone lines, gas line, water system, or other public service within said corporate limits, to meet the needs of the inhabitants, when in the opinion of the council, such extension is necessary and justifiable.
(67) To grant and regulate all franchises in, upon, over and under the streets, alleys and public ways of said city, under such restrictions as shall be provided by ordinances and general law; but no exclusive franchise shall be granted by said city council to any individual or corporation; nor shall any franchise be granted for a longer period than twenty 429 years.
(68) To acquire, erect or authorize or prohibit the erection of gas works, electric light works or water works within the city limits; to prevent injury to such works or the pollution of any gas or water used or intended to be used by the public or by individuals; and to do all things necessary to adequately supply said city and the inhabitants thereof with pure, healthful and wholesome water; and to require any company furnishing gas or electricity for sale or distribution in said city, to furnish an adequate supply thereof; to require gas fixtures, electric light wires, telephone wires and all apparatuses used in connection with any of these, to be kept in repair and suitable for use, and free from danger, so far as practicable; to use, generate, distribute, sell and control electricity and gas for heat, light and power, and to furnish light for the streets, highways, buildings, stores and other places in and about said city.
(69) To require any gas company or person furnishing gas for said city or the inhabitants thereof, to put in standard meters for the measurement thereof, and may appoint a competent person to inspect the meters and remove the same if not standard and in good order; to prevent injury to any gas works, electric light works, water system or any gas meter or meter within said municipality.
(70) The council shall have the right to require of any water company or person furnishing water for the use of the inhabitants of said city, for hire, compensation or reward, to obey any order of the council with respect to keeping the reservoir or other source from which said water is furnished, free from filth and in good clean condition, and may require said water company to properly filter the water distributed for use, and may require said company to put in such lines as may be necessary to pump the said water into the reservoir or other receptacle therefor, without pumping the same into the main distributing lines, or in any other way or manner effecting them; and may fix fines and penalties for any failure on the part of any corporation, company or other person distributing water, to obey any order of the council or any authorized officer of the town, respecting the same, or any ordinance that may be enacted by the council relative thereto.
(71) The council shall have the right to provide a sewerage system for said city, and may require the owner of any property abutting upon any street or alley in which a sewer has been laid or placed, to connect a sewer leading from his or her property or lot into any public sewer which is located in such street or alley adjoining the same, and if the owner or occupier of said lot or property fails or refuses so to do, after having been given a reasonable notice, the council may enter upon such lot and con[s]truct such sewers, and may levy the actual cost thereof against the lot upon which the same is built and collect such costs from the owner of such lot in the same manner as city or state taxes are collected and as herein provided; in addition thereto, the council may punish by fine, or fine and imprisonment, any person who permits any drainage from his residence or lot to enter upon any street or upon any property after a sewer has been placed in a street or alley adjacent to his property to which he should connect, after notice has been given to him by the council to make such connection.
(72) The council shall have the right to impose fines and penalties for any interference with or destruction of the sewer system or any part thereof in said city, or for the destruction of or damage to any street, alley or sidewalk in said city, or any improper use thereof; it shall have the right to regulate or prevent the use of the sidewalk for bicycles, push carts, sleds, tricycles, roller skates and other things of like character, and to fix fines and penalties for violation of the ordinances respecting same.
(73) To grant by ordinance or resolution permits for the temporary use of such parts of its streets, roads, alleys and public places as the council may deem proper and right to be used in the construction, alteration or repair of buildings located thereon, or for such other purposes as the council may deem proper and right, and under such regulations and for such time as the council may prescribe.
(74) The council may buy, lease and operate either within or without the municipality, stone quarries, crushers and land for said purposes or for the purpose of furnishing a supply of stone or other material suitable for macadamizing or paving the streets, sidewalks and alleys, and improving public property.
(75) Whenever in the opinion of the council it is necessary that any sidewalk be built or repaired, it shall first have a competent engineer fix a grade line for such sidewalk and shall then, by order of council, name the character of material out of which same is to be built, and fix the width thereof, and shall then give notice, in writing, to the owner or occupier of said lot, if he be found, and if he be not found, by posting a notice thereof upon the said lot and at the front door of the court house of Raleigh county for at least ten days, requiring the construction of said sidewalk in accordance with the requirements of the council, and upon the grade fixed by the said engineer, and if such sidewalk be not built, altered or repaired within twenty days after such notice is first given or posted, the council shall proceed to put in the same under its supervision and control, and shall charge the expense thereof against the property along which the same os being placed, altered or repaired, and shall cause an itemized account of the same to be made up and delivered to such property owner or occupier of such premises, if found, and if he be not found, have the same recorded in the county clerk's office of Raleigh county, and the same shall constitute a lien upon the said lot or .property and shall be collected as other taxes are collected; provided, nothing herein contained shall prevent the council from requiring immediate repair of such sidewalks now or hereafter constructed that may become dangerous, and after notice to the property owner along which the same run, the council may make such immediate repairs, if the property owner fails to make same after such notice, and the expense thereof shall be a lien in the manner aforesaid.
(76) To authorize by ordinance such committees or boards, and delegate such authority thereto as may be deemed necessary or advisable by the council; except that the council cannot delegate the authority to impose a lien upon real estate; and to employ such legal counsel on behalf of the city, from time to time, as the city may deem necessary to protect the interests of the city.
(77) To provide for the annual assessment of the taxable property in said city, including dogs kept in said city, and to provide a revenue for the city for municipal purposes and appropriate such revenue to its expenses; provided, nothing herein contained shall require the council to keep in repair and maintain any bridge or bridges within said corporation, now or hereafter owned by the Chesapeake and Ohio Railway company, but the officers of said city in the preservation of law and order shall have jurisdiction over any such bridges within such corporation; and provided, further, that the police regulations as may be ordained by said city, and the right and power to enforce the same shall extend one mile into the State of West Virginia beyond the corporate limits of said city, but not into any other municipal corporation.
(78) The council may, within any prescribed area, prohibit the erection on any street or in any square, of any building, or of any addition to any building, unless the outer walls thereof be made of brick and mortar or other fire-proof material. And may require the removal of any building or addition which shall be hereafter erected contrary to this prohibition, at the expense of the owner or owners thereof.
(79) The council shall keep all roads, streets and alleys within its limits passable and in good repair, and may provide the expenses therefor by a direct taxation, as provided under this charter, or in any other manner authorized by law; and residents of said city who are taxed therein for the purpose of maintaining such streets and alleys shall be exempt from the payment of any county road tax.
(80) In the enforcement of the ordinances, orders, rules, regulations and by-laws of the said city, no fine shall be imposed exceeding five hundred dollars, and no person shall he imprisoned or compelled to labor on the streets of said city, as aforesaid, exceeding six months; provided, that any violation of the prohibition or liquor laws of this state shall be punished by the fines and penalties therein prescribed; and violations of the road law or automobile laws, may be punished by the fines and penalties prescribed by general law, unless different fines and penalties are expressly prescribed by the ordinances of said city. And in all cases where a fine is imposed for an amount exceeding ten dollars, or a person be imprisoned or compelled to labor as aforesaid, an appeal may be taken from such decision upon the same terms and conditions that appeals are taken from the judgment of a justice of this state; and in no case shall a fine of less than ten dollars be imposed where the ordinance prescribes a fine, if the defendant requests that such fine be made at least ten dollars for the purpose of appeal.
(81) The council shall have the right to enforce the attendance of its members at all regular meetings and at all special meetings of which such members have notice, and may cause the arrest and punishment, by fine or fine and imprisonment, of any such member who refuses to attend and take part in its proceedings.
(82) It shall be the express duty of the council to present charges against any of its members, or any elective officer of the city, who fails to perform, or who does not promptly and diligently perform any duty prescribed by this act, or by any ordinance or resolution of the council, and upon hearing thereof before the council, after notice to such officer, he shall be removed from office by the council, if the charges be found correct.
(83) To carry into effect these enumerated powers and all others by this act or by general law conferred, or which may hereafter be conferred upon the said city, of its council, or any of its officers, the said council shall have and possess full authority to make, pass and adopt all needful ordinances, by-laws, orders and resolutions, not repugnant to the constitution of the United States, the constitution of West Virginia and laws of this state; and to enforce any and all of such ordinances, by-laws, orders or resolutions, by prescribing for a violation thereof fines and penalties, and imprisonment in either the county jail of Raleigh county, or the city prison, if there be one. Said fines and penalties shall be imposed and recovered, and such imprisonment inflicted and enforced by the judgment of the police judge of said city, or in case of his absence or inability to act then by the mayor of said city; or in case of the absence or inability to act of both of such officers, then one of the councilmen appointed for that purpose shall act.
Sec. 22. The city solicitor shall be a member of the Raleigh county bar, in good standing, and a citizen of the city of Beckley, he shall be the legal adviser of and counsel for said city and for all officers thereof in matters relating to their official duties. He shall prepare all ordinances, contracts, bonds and other instruments in writing in which the city is concerned, and no written contract with the city, except bonds given to said city by officials or others, shall take effect, until the legality thereof shall have been approved by such city solicitor. He shall attend the council meetings and perform such other duties, from time to time, as the council may require of him.
Sec. 23. It shall be the duty of the chief of police to preserve order and quiet in said city, and to see that all subordinate police officers faithfully perform their official duties. He shall attend all regular council meetings and be present in the police court, whenever the same shall .be in session, and see that all its orders and requirements are properly executed. In case of the violation of any ordinance of said city in the presence of or within view of the chief of police, or other police officer, the offender may be forthwith apprehended and taken before the police judge, and a complaint under oath, stating such violation, there lodged and filed, and thereupon such offender may be tried and dealt with according to law without summons. The. chief of police or any other police officer of said city shall execute within the county of Raleigh any proper process issued by the police judge in proceedings for the enforcement of ordinances; he shall collect, by a levy of execution or otherwise, and duly account for all fines assessed and costs imposed and collected by him in such proceedings. He shall also have the rights and powers within said city in regard to the arrest of persons, the collection of claims and the execution and return of process, that are or may be lawfully exercised by a constable of any district within said county; and he and his sureties shall be liable for all fines, penalties and forfeitures for which a constable is liable, and for dereliction of duty in office, to be recovered in the same manner and in the same courts that such fines, penalties and forfeitures are recovered against constables.
Sec. 24. The duties of chief of fire department shall be such as the council may, by ordinance, prescribe.
Sec. 25. It shall be the duty of the city assessor to co-operate with the county assessor to the end that all property within the city, subject to taxation, may be charged upon the land and personal property books, respectively, and proper valuations thereon placed.
Sec. 26. The city health officer shall be a legally qualified physician. When he shall have been recommended by the council and appointed as such by the public health council, pursuant to section six. chapter one hundred and fifty of the code, of West Virginia, he, together with the mayor and city solicitor shall constitute the board of health of said city, of which the city health officer shall be the executive officer.
Streets and Roads
Streets and Roads
Sec. 27. The said city shall construct and maintain its own roads and streets and by reason thereof it shall not be required to pay any district or county road levies for the construction and maintenance of roads outside of the city limits, but this provision shall not be construed to relieve the city from any liability on existing or future county or district bond issues for road purposes.
Sec. 28. All ordinances and resolutions of said city in force at the time of the passage of this act, which are not inconsistent therewith, shall be and remain in full force over the whole boundary of said city as established by this act, until the same are amended or repealed by the council of said city, and the officers elected at. the last election, in the City of Beck- ley, shall remain in office until their successors, under this act, are elected and qualified as hereinbefore provided, and after this act takes effect, the present officers of said city shall have jurisdiction over all the territory embraced in the boundary specified in this act, and such present officers shall then be vested with full power and authority to pass any new ordinances or resolutions under this act that are not inconsistent therewith. Nothing in this act shall be construed or held to in any way affect or impair any of the bonds, obligations or indebtedness of the City of Beckley existing at the time of the passage of this act.
Sec. 29. The City of Beckley, by and through its council, may issue and sell its bonds, in the manner, and subject to the limitations and conditions contained in chapter fourteen, acts of the legislature one thousand, nine hundred and twenty- three.
Sec. 30. Whenever anything for which a state license is required under chapter thirty-two of the code of West Virginia, to be done within said city, the council may require a city license therefor, and may impose a tax thereon for the use of the city, now prescribed or hereafter enacted. Such license tax shall be the same as is now or may hereafter be fixed by statute for state license.
Sec. 31. The council of said city shall be officially known as and called the "Common Council of the City of Beckley." A majority of the council shall be necessary to form a quorum for the transaction of business
Sec. 32. The mayor of said city shall be paid a salary of six hundred dollars per year, except that during the time that the mayor shall perform the duties of police judge, as hereinbefore provided, he shall, in addition to the said mayor's salary, receive one-half of the salary prescribed for the police judge, in proportion to the length of time he shall perform such duties. The recorder shall be paid a salary of twenty-four hundred dollars per year; the police judge shall be paid a salary of twelve hundred dollars per year; all other officers of the city shall be paid such salaries as the council may prescribe. Salaries shall be paid by the city in monthly installments. Each councilman shall be paid five dollars for each regular meeting of the council he shall attend, not exceeding two meetings per month. The present councilmen of said city may be paid like sums, provided, an ordinance authorizing the payment thereof was regularly passed by the members of the former council and that levy-was made for that purpose, and such councilmen have not been paid by reason of section forty- two, chapter forty-seven of the code of West Virginia. No officer, councilman, agent or employee of said city shall have a voice or be directly or indirectly pecuniarily interested in any contract, sale or purchase for or on behalf of the city, or in the proceeds of any improvement made by or on behalf of the city, nor shall he receive, directly or indirectly, any compensation for his services rendered on behalf of the city, other than herein provided to be paid. Nor shall such councilman remain present while any such matters are being voted upon by the council.
Sec. 33. The council of said city shall not for any purpose. exclusive of bond issues, create any indebtedness against the said city exceeding available revenues of the city for the current fiscal year, and any councilman who shall violate the provisions of this section shall be personally liable therefor and subject to all other penalties prescribed by any statute of this state for so doing; but nothing in this section shall be construed to prevent the council from lawfully issuing orders after the first day of July, to be paid out of the city treasury, provided, such orders do not exceed the available revenues for that fiscal year, based upon the assessments and levies made or to be made for said year. but such orders shall not draw interest.
Sec. 34. The council shall fix the place and time of holding its regular meetings. It may provide for special and adjourned meetings and prescribe rules and regulations not inconsistent with this act for the transaction of business and for its own guidance and government.
Sec. 35. No money shall be paid out of the city treasury unless authorized by an order entered of record in the council journal, signed by the mayor, or other presiding officer, and the recorder, and all warrants drawn upon the city treasury shall be signed by the mayor and recorder before payment thereof shall be authorized by any city depository.
Sec. 36. A copy or transcript of any records of the police court, purporting to have been attested or certified by the police judge thereof, may be admitted as evidence in any court of this state without any proof of the signature, or of the official character of the person whose name is signed to it; and a copy or transcript of any records of any department of said city, purporting to have been attested or certified by the mayor or recorder of said city, may be admitted as evidence in any court of this state without any proof of the signature or of the official character of the person whose name is signed to it, whether the seal of said city be attached thereto or not.
Sec. 37. The mayor of said city shall have the same power within the city to administer oaths and affirmations as is now vested in a justice of the peace under chapter fifty of the code of West Virginia; and the recorder of said city shall have the same power and authority to administer oaths or affirmations and take acknowledgements to deeds and other writings in said city as is now vested in a justice of the peace under and by virtue of said chapter.
Sec. 38. For the construction of all streets and sidewalks by this city, pursuant to section thirty-four of chapter forty-seven of the code of West Virginia, the lien for such improvements shall exist against the property so improved from the date the construction work actually begins, and the lien of the assessments provided for in section thirty-six of said chapter forty-seven shall relate back to the beginning of such construction work; provided, no lien imposed by the said city on real estate therein except liens for municipal taxes shall continue to exist unless a notice thereof be filed for record in Raleigh county court clerk's office within ninety days after the report of the completion of such improvements has been filed before the city council by the city engineer; such notice shall be recorded by said clerk in appropriate record book and indexed together with other liens against real estate; and releases of said liens shall, when discharged, be also recorded and indexed in said clerk's office as other releases.
Sec. 39. The mayor of this city, while discharging his official duties, is hereby vested with the same power to punish, for contempt committed in his presence, as is now vested in justices of the peace of this state.
Sec. 40. Chapter forty-seven of the code of West Virginia, Barnes' code of one thousand nine hundred and twenty-three. as amended by the acts of the legislature of West Virginia in one thousand nine hundred and twenty-three, and one thousand nine hundred and twenty-five, and all amendments thereto, in so far as they are not inconsistent with the several provisions of this act, are hereby adopted as a part of this act; and no act of the legislature or existing law of this state, in conflict with the several provisions of this act, shall be applicable to the City of Beckley; and the charter of the City of Beckley passed by the legislature of West Virginia on the fourteenth day of February, one thousand nine hundred and eight, is hereby repealed. Nothing in this act shall be construed to modify, diminish or in anywise change or deprive the public service commission of the state of West Virginia of any of the rights, duties and responsibilities placed upon it under existing public service statutes, all of which are to remain in full force and effect insofar as this charter is concerned, notwithstanding any provisions herein contained.