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property that shall fall to the state by escheat, the proceeds of all gifts and donations to the state for common schools, or not otherwise appropriated by the terms of the gift, and all other property otherwise acquired for common schools, shall be and remain a perpetual fund for the maintenance of the common schools of the state. It shall be deemed a trust fund, the principal of which shall forever remain inviolate and may be increased but never diminished. The state shall make good all losses thereof.
Sec. 154. The interest and income of this fund together with the net proceeds of all fines for violation of state laws, and all other sums which may be added thereto by law shall be faithfully used and applied each year for the benefit of the common schools of the state, and shall be for this purpose apportioned among and between all the several common school corporations of the state in proportion to the number of children in each of school age, as may be fixed by law, and no part of the fund shall ever be diverted even temporarily, from this purpose or used for any other purpose whatever than the maintenance of common schools for the equal benefit of all the people of the state; provided, however, that if any portion of the interest or income aforesaid be not expended during any year, said portion shall be added to and become a part of the school fund.
Sec. 155. After one year from the assembling of the first legislative assembly the lands granted to the state from the United States for the support of the common schools, may be sold upon the following conditions and no other: No more than one-fourth of all such lands shall be sold within the first five years after the same become saleable by virtue of this section. No more than one-half of the remainder within ten years after the same become saleable as aforesaid. The residue may be sold at any time after the expiration of said ten years. The legislative assembly shall provide for the sale of all school lands subject to the provisions of this article. The coal lands of the state shall never be sold, but the legislative assembly may by general laws provide for leasing the same. The words "coal lands" shall include lands bearing lignite coal.
Sec. 156. The superintendent of public instruction, governor, attorney general, secretary of state and state auditor shall constitute a board of commissioners, which shall be denominated the "Board of University and School Lands," and, subject to the provisions of this article, and any law that may be passed by the legislative assembly, said board shall have control of the appraisement, sale, rental and disposal of all school and university lands, and shall direct the investment of the funds arising therefrom in the hands of the state treasurer, under the limitations in section 160 of this article.
Sec. 157. The county superintendent of common schools, the chairman of the county board and the county auditor shall constitute boards of appraisal and under the authority of the state board of university and school lands shall appraise all school lands within their respective counties which they may from time to time recommend for sale at their actual value under the prescribed terms and shall first select and designate for sale the most valuable lands.
Sec. 158. No land shall be sold for less than the appraised value and in no case for less than $10 per acre. The purchaser shall pay one-fifth of the price in cash and the remaining four-fifths as follows: One-fifth in five years, one-fifth in ten years one-fifth in fifteen years and one-fifth in twenty years, with interest at the rate of not less than six per centum, payable annually in advance. All sales shall be held at the county seat of the county in which the land to be sold is situate, and shall be at public auction and to the highest bidder, after sixty days advertisement of the same in a newspaper of general circulation in the vicinity of the lands to be sold, and one at the seat of government. Such lands as shall not have been specially subdivided shall be offered in tracts of one-quarter section, and those so subdivided in the smallest subdivisions. All lands designated for sale and not sold within two years after appraisal shall be reappraised before they are sold. No grant or patent for any such lands shall issue until payment is made for the same; provided, that the lands contracted to be sold by the state shall be subject to taxation from the date of such contract. In case the taxes assessed against any of said lands for any year remain unpaid until the first Monday in October of the following year, then and thereupon the contract of sale for such lands shall become null and void.
Sec. 159. All land, money or other property donated, granted or received from the United States or any other source for a university, school of mines, reform school, agricultural college, deaf and dumb asylum, normal school or other educational or charitable institution or purpose, and the proceeds of all such lands and other property so received from any source, shall be and remain perpetual funds the interest and income of which, together with the rents of all such lands as may remain unsold, shall be inviolably appropriated and applied to the specific objects of the original grants or gifts. The principal of every such fund may be increased but shall never be diminished and the interest and income only shall be used. Every such fund shall be deemed a trust fund held by the state, and the state shall make good all losses thereof.
Sec. 160. All lands mentioned in the preceding section shall be appraised and sold in the same manner and under
the same limitations and subject to all the conditions as to price and sale as provided above for the appraisal and sale of lands for the benefit of common schools; but a distinct and seperate account shall be kept by the proper officers of each of said funds; provided, that the limitations as to the time in which school land may be sold shall apply only to lands granted for the support of common schools.
Sec. 161. The legislative assembly shall have authority to provide by law for the leasing of lands granted to the state for educational and charitable purposes; but no such law shall authorize the leasing of said lands for a longer period than five years. Said lands shall only be leased for pasturage and meadow purposes and at a public auction after notice as heretofore provided in case of sale; provided, that all of said school lands now under cultivation may be leased, at the discretion and under the control of the board of university and school lands, for other than pasturage and meadow purposes until sold. All rents shall be paid in advance.
Sec. 162. The moneys of the permanent school fund and other educational funds shall be invested only in bonds of school corporations within the state. bonds of the United States, bonds of the state of North Dakota, or in first mortgages on farm lands in the state, not exceeding in amount one-third of the actual value of any subdivision on which the same may be loaned, such value to be determined by the board of appraisers of school lands.
Sec. 163. No law shall ever be passed by the legislative assembly granting to any person, corporation or association any privileges by reason of the occupation, cultivation or improvement of any public lands by said person, corporation or association subsequent to the survey thereof by the general government. No claim for the occupation, cultivation or improvement of any public lands shall ever be recognized. nor shall such occupation, cultivation or improvement of any public lands ever be used to diminish, either directly or indirectly the purchase price of said lands.
Sec. 164. The legislative assembly shall have authority to provide by law for the sale or disposal of all public lands that have been heretofore, or may hereafter be granted by the United States to the state for purposes other than set forth and named in section 153 and 159 of this article. And the legislative assembly, in providing for the appraisement, sale, rental and disposal of the same, shall not be subject to the provisions and limitations of this article.
Sec. 165. The legislative assembly shall pass suitable laws for the safe keeping, transfer and disbursement of the state school funds; and shall require all officers charged with the same or the safe keeping thereof to give ample
bonds for all moneys and funds received by them, and if any of said officers shall convert to his own use in any maner or form, or shall loan with or without interest or shall deposit in his own name, or otherwise than in the name of the state of North Dakota, or shall deposit in any banks or with any person or persons, or exchange for other funds or property any portion of the school funds aforesaid, or purposely allow any portion of the same to remain in his own hands uninvested, except in the manner prescribed by law, every such act shall constitute an embezzlement of so much of the aforesaid school funds as shall be thus taken or loaned, or deposited, or exchanged, or withheld, and shall be a felony; and any failure to pay over, produce or account for the state school funds or any part of the same entrusted to any such officer, as by law required or demanded, shall be held and be taken to be prima facie evidence of such embezzlement.
ARTICLE X.-County and Township Organization.
Sec. 166. The several counties in the territory of Dakota lying north of the seventh standard parallel as they now exist, are hereby declared to be counties of the state of North Dakota.
Sec. 167. The legislative assembly shall provide by general law for organizing new counties, locating the county seats thereof temporarily, and changing county lines, but no new county shall be organized, nor shall any organized county be so reduced as to include an area of less than twenty-four congressional townships, and containing a population of less than one thousand bona fide inhabitants. And in the organization of new counties and in changing the lines of organized counties and boundaries of congressional townships, the natural boundaries shall be observed as nearly as may be.
Sec. 168. All changes in the boundaries of organized counties before taking effect shall be submitted to the electors of the county or counties to be affected thereby at a general election and be adopted by a majority of all the legal votes cast in each county at such election; and in case any portion of an organized county is stricken off and added to another the county to which such portion is added shall assume and be holden for an equitable proportion of the indebtedness of the county so reduced.
Sec. 169. The legislative assembly shall provide by general law, for changing county seats in organized counties, but it shall have no power to remove the county seat of any organized county.
Sec 170. The legislative assembly shall provide by general law for township organization, under which any county may organize, whenever a majority of all the legal voters of such county, voting at a general election, shall so
determine, and whenever any county shall adopt township organization, so much of this constitution as provides for the management of the fiscal concerns of said county by the board of county commissioners may be dispensed with by a majority vote of the people voting at any general election; and the affairs of said county may be transacted by the chairmen of the several township boards of said county, and such others as may be provided by law for incorporated cities, towns or villages within such county.
Sec. 171. In any county that shall have adopted a system of government by the chairmen of the several township boards, the question of continuing the same may be submitted to the electors of such county at a general election in such a manner as may be provided by law, and if a majority of all the votes cast upon such question shall be against said system of government, then such system shall cease in said county and the affairs of said county shall then be transacted by a board of county commissioners as is now provided by the laws of the territory of Dakota.
Sec. 172. Until the system of county government by the chairmen of the several township boards is adopted by any county, the fiscal affairs of said county shall be transacted by a board of county commissioners. Said board shall consist of not less than three and not more than five members. whose terms of office shall be prescribed by law. Said board shall hold sessions for the transaction of county business as shall be provided by law.
Sec. 173. At the first general election held after the adoption of this constitution, and every two years thereafter, there shall be elected in each organized county in the state, a county judge, clerk of court, register of deeds, county auditor, treasurer, sheriff and states attorney, who shall be electors of the county in which they are elected, and who shall hold their office until their successors are elected and qualified. The legislative assembly shall provide by law for such other county, township and district officers as may be deemed necessary, and shall prescribe the duties and compensation of all county, township and district officers. The sheriff and treasurer of any county shall not hold their respective offices for more than four years in succession.
ARTICLE XI.-Revenue and Taxation.
Sec. 174. The legislative assembly shall provide for raising revenue sufficient to defray the expenses of the state for each year, not to exceed in any one year four (4) mills on the dollar of the assessed valuation of all taxable property in the state, to be ascertained by the last assessment made for state and county purposes, and also a sufficient sum to pay the interest on the state debt.