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The People v. Toll Highway Com.

OPINION FILED MAY 24, 1954.

THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF ILLINOIS, APPELLANT,

v.

THE ILLINOIS TOLL HIGHWAY COMMISSION ET AL., APPELLEES.



APPEAL from the Circuit Court of Sangamon County; the Hon. DEWITT CROW, Judge, presiding.

MR. JUSTICE MAXWELL DELIVERED THE OPINION OF THE COURT:

This is an appeal from the circuit court of Sangamon County involving the State Toll Highway Commission Act of this State. Through the State's Attorney of said county quo warrantor and injunction actions were simultaneously instituted against the Illinois State Toll Highway Commission and its members, in substance challenging the validity of the statute which became effective upon the Governor's approval July 13, 1953. The issues being the same the trial court entered an order consolidating the causes. Respondents filed motions to strike the two actions and the trial court granted said motions. Upon the plaintiff electing to stand on the initial pleadings the trial court held the act constitutional and entered a decree and judgment of dismissal in the two actions.

1. Plaintiff contends the act violates section 5 of article V of our State constitution in that section 3 of the act makes the Governor an ex-officio member of the commission and section 11 of the act requires approval by the Governor of plans and location of highways before bonds are issued.

2. Plaintiff contends the act violates section 26 of article IV of the State constitution in that section 27 of the act gives consent of the State to suits against the commission and section 14 of the act authorizes bondholders to sue the commission.

3. Plaintiff contends the act violates section 18 of article IV of the State constitution in that bonds may be issued by the commission without a referendum, subject to approval of preliminary plans and location of roads by the Governor under section 11.

4. Plaintiff contends the act violates section 17 of article IV of the State constitution in that section 20 of the act provides no appropriation shall be necessary to withdraw funds from the treasury and such funds shall be considered always appropriated for the purpose of disbursement.

5. Plaintiff contends the act violates section 20 of article IV of the State constitution in that section 9(d) of the act gives the commission power to construct grade separations for railroads at its own cost. Plaintiff further objects to appropriations made by the Sixty-eighth General Assembly for payment of salaries and preliminary expenses of the commission.

6. Plaintiff contends the act violates section 22 of article IV of the State constitution in that section 17 of the act provides that toll roads do not become part of the State highway system until all bonds are paid and only the commission has authority to establish tolls and operate toll roads.

7. Plaintiff contends the act violates section 12 of article IX of the State constitution concerning debt limitations.

8. Plaintiff contends the act violates due process of law and section 19 of article II of the State constitution. Plaintiff further contends the act violates article III of the State constitution in that section 28 of the act provides all determinations made by the commission with the approval of the Governer shall be conclusive and not subject to review by any court or administrative agency of the State, thereby granting to the commission judicial power as well as legislative authority.

9. Plaintiff contends the act violates section 26 of article IV of the State constitution in that section 7 of the act gives the commission power of eminent domain over public lands, highways, parkways, parks, playgrounds, all of which are held by the State or agency of the State.

10. Plaintiff contends the act violates section 1 of article V of the State constitution in that subsections 6(b), (d) and (e) of the act give the commission power to appoint assistant Attorneys General and retain special counsel to perform duties which can only legally be performed by the Attorney General or assistants appointed by him.

The act in question contains twenty-nine sections and is cited as paragraph 314a26 to 314a54, inclusive, chapter 121, Illinois Revised Statutes, 1953. The foregoing constitutional ...


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