Page:The Green Bag (1889–1914), Volume 25.pdf/402

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The Recall in Colorado Section 1 herein more particularly set forth. We presume for counties this means the Board of County Commissioners shall signify the procedure necessary to supplement the constitution, to put it in operation in such jurisdictions, and this provision suggests a few queries: First, Are the expenses of the incum bent sought to be recalled in the county or city to be paid out of the county or city treasury? Second, Would an appropriation there for be necessary in order to cause the machinery to be put in motion? Third, If it is an officer for a district larger than a county but less than a state, such as a judicial officer, from what treasury is he reimbursed, and what county or what Board of County Commissioners fixes the procedure? Would district judicial officers for the purposes of this constitution be denomi nated state officers? There are con flicting authorities on some of these questions. Paragraph 7 of this section involves some principles worthy of study. The purpose of the first part of the section was undoubtedly to extend the recall to every known officer, from a constable or policeman up to the Governor. Still there is left open the principal answer, just what officers exercise public or governmental functions, powers, or duties? The last sentence of this sec tion, however, is the one which we apprehend escaped the observation of the average voter, namely: "Provided that, subject to regulation by law, any person may, without compensation therefor, file petitions or complaints in courts concerning crimes, or do police duty only in case of time of danger to person or property." We presume that the last clause, "In case of time of danger to person or property" refers to


the right to do police duty. Certain it is that the functions of the District Attorney are by the proviso sought to be handed to any person, and the privilege given to appear in any court and file complaints, and presumably follow the complaint with prosecution. The last paragraph of the article puts the amendment in full force and opera tion, without supplementary legislation by the legislature, but condescendingly permits the legislature to so legislate as to facilitate and hasten its operation. One query worthy of consideration now, which will be later outgrown, is: Can this amendment, which in the absence of the proclamation from the Governor took effect on the 23d day of January, 1913, apply to officers elected at the General Election of 1912: that is to say, inasmuch as those officers, when elected and qualified, took offices the terms of which were fixed by the constitution, can they be ousted by fol lowing the provisions of a law which took effect after their induction into office? We think the various queries herein before suggested are worthy of con sideration by the bar. Their resolution, or attempt to resolve them, will lead to a greater familiarity with the law and its purpose, and suggest wholesome amendments and improvements which will promote the accomplishment of the purpose which brought the law into existence. Undoubtedly there was a reason for the enactment of this law, and it is the business of the lawyer to find the reason, and in the light thereof to read the purpose of the law and aid in carrying it out. Like all other instru ments of worth it is capable of abuse and if the legislature, through the exercise of the power granted to it by the amendment in question, can throw out such safeguards and such auxiliaries in the way of legislation as will retard