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People Ex Rel. v. Crane Packing Co.

OPINION FILED MARCH 22, 1950.

THE PEOPLE EX REL. LOUIS E. NELSON, COUNTY COLLECTOR, APPELLEE,

v.

CRANE PACKING COMPANY, APPELLANT.



APPEAL from the County Court of Cook County; the Hon. EDMUND K. JARECKI, Judge, presiding.

MR. JUSTICE SIMPSON DELIVERED THE OPINION OF THE COURT:

Revenue being involved, the Crane Packing Company, objector and appellant, appeals directly to this court to reverse a judgment of the county court of Cook County overruling certain of its objections to the 1946 levy for building purposes of the board of education of the city of Chicago and refusing to order the return of taxes theretofore paid by it under protest.

This board of education, operating under a statute peculiar to itself, (Ill. Rev. Stat. 1945, chap. 122, par. 34-49,) uses a numerical and alphabetical code to designate the hundreds of various items in its budget. This code was introduced in evidence and shows that the board has nine separate funds. The numeral 3 preceding an item refers to the building fund. The letter following the numeral 3 indicates the standard account to which the appropriation is chargeable, and the letter R refers to "Repairs and Replacements." Following the letter R appear figures defining the function or character of the expenses thus appropriated for, and they are as follows:

600 — Repairs and Replacements

601 — Minor Building or Equipment Repairs

602 — Engineering or Mechanical Repairs

619 — Glass — Glazing

629 — Painting — Calcimining

641 — Furniture — Equipment

650 — Up-keep of Grounds

660 — Plumbing — Gas Fitting

676 — General

The aggregate of all of the building fund appropriations for "Repairs and Replacements," hereinafter for convenience referred to as 3-R appropriations, totals $3,920,779.

The objector's first contention is, that a number of like appropriations for the "Bureau of Architecture — factory and repair division," and a number of like appropriations for "Repairs and Replacements" have been by this court heretofore adjudged to be educational fund expenses and are illegally appropriated and levied as a part of the building fund. It then argues that it is impossible by mathematical calculations or otherwise to determine which portion of the building levy for "Repairs and Replacements" is legal and which portion is illegal. It then urges the well-recognized rule that where legal appropriations of a levy cannot be separated from the illegal, the entire levy is void. Because of the inter-relationship between items listed under the "Bureau of Architecture" and items listed under "Replacements and ...


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