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[House Roll No. 79.]


AN ACT for the relief of the people in the drouth-stricken districts of Nebraska, to aid in feeding and clothing said people, and to provide a method for the distribution of the aid herein provided for to the drouth-stricken inhabitants.

WHEREAS, The dry weather and hot winds of last summer and the Indian disturbances of the last few weeks have reduced thousands of people in this state to a condition of absolute want and dependence for fuel, food, and clothing until such time as another harvest may be secured; and

WHEREAS, It is the duty of the state to provide for its suffering and dependent citizens at the earliest possible time: Therefore,

Be it enacted by the Legislature of the State of

for relief of

people in


SECTION 1. That for the purposes set forth in Appropriation the foregoing preamble, and to defray the necessary drouthexpenses thereof, there be and is hereby appropri- counties. ated from the state treasury, from the funds not otherwise appropriated, the sum of one hundred thousand ($100,000) dollars, or so much thereof as may be found necessary, for the immediate relief of the people in the drouth-stricken counties of the state of Nebraska.

sion; duties.

SEC. 2. For the purpose of carrying into effect Relief commis. this act, and to the end that the aid thereby appropriated may reach those in destitution and want in the drouth-stricken portion of the state, there is hereby created a "Relief Commission," consisting of


Requisition for funds; list of articles purchased.

Distribution of supplies.

Samuel M. Elder, Luther P. Ludden, R. R. Greer, Louis Meyer, George W. Martin, John Fitzgerald, A. J. Sawyer, C. W. Mosher, J. W. Hartley, and W. N. Nason, who shall elect from their numbers a president, treasurer, and secretary, and into the hands of said commission shall be paid the funds hereby appropriated from the state treasury, and they shall and are hereby required to purchase and distribute the necessaries of life for the relief of the suffering inhabitants of the drouth-stricken district, and to distribute them to the people through channels hereinafter provided.

SEC. 3. Be it further enacted, That it is hereby made the duty of the auditor of public accounts to draw his warrant on the state treasurer upon the requisition of the commission herein before named, filed in his office, as the same shall be necessary to furnish the supplies and necessaries of life to carry out the provisions of this act.

SEC. 4. It is hereby made the duty of said commission, in the requisition for the funds set forth therein, to state the purpose for which said money to be paid by the treasurer is to be used, with an itemized statement of the several articles and kind of supplies to be purchased, and on the purchase of the same to file with the secretary of state an itemized list of all articles by them purchased for the relief of the western sufferers.

SEC. 5. It shall be and it is hereby made the duty of said relief commission, through the agency of the county commissioners, or board of supervisors, together with the county clerk and sheriff of the respective counties whose inhabitants require aid, to distribute the supplies by them purchased,

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as hereinbefore contemplated, to the county commissioners, clerk, and sheriff of the several counties requiring aid, and take the receipt of the commissioners and county clerk for said supplies thus furnished to the several counties through the commissioners, clerk, and sheriff of said counties, and from time to time file said receipts, together with all vouchers for supplies furnished, with the secretary of the state.

county boards.

SEC. 6. Be it further enacted, That the several Duties of commissioners and county clerks of the respective counties in the drouth-stricken districts, or the boards of supervisors of the counties in case any of said counties are under township organization, to receive said supplies and to distribute the same to the needy or suffering of their respective counties. That said county commissioners, county clerks, or the several boards of supervisors shall be and are hereby made responsible on their official bonds for the faithful and proper distribution of all funds and supplies coming into their hands through the agency of the state relief commission herein created, or by donation through private sources. And it is further made the duty of said several boards of county commissioners, and clerk of the respective counties, or of the township organizations in counties under township organization, to keep a full, complete, and itemized record of all supplies, funds, merchandise, and articles of every kind, name, or nature, distributed by them to the suffering poor, and to whom distributed, and in what quanity, and the date of such distribution. And be it further enacted, That it is hereby made the duty of said county commissioners and boards

Expenses of commission.

Accounts and reports of commission.

of supervisors herein referred to, to report at least once a week by an itemized and detailed statement of all the funds by them received and of the merchandise and articles of every kind for the relief of the suffering to the state relief commission hereby created. Said report shall set forth in detail, an itemized statement of all supplies distributed, to whom distributed, the date when delivered, and where they are distributed to families, to give the number in the family receiving relief, which statement shall be filed with the secretary of state by the state relief commission hereby created, and by said state relief commission reported in their monthly reports which they are hereafter required to make to the secretary of state.

SEC. 7. Said state relief commission hereby created is authorized to use in paying the actual expenses for the carrying into effect the provisions of this act not to exceed two and one-half per cent of the amount of money drawn by them from the treasury and hereby appropriated for the relief of the sufferers herein before referred to.

SEC. 8. It is hereby made the duty of said state relief commission thus created to keep an itemized and accurate account of all funds and moneys by them received from the state, or from any other source, or by private donation for the relief of the sufferers herein before mentioned, which record shall at all reasonable hours be open for the inspection of the public. And be it further enacted, That said state relief commission hereby created shall keep an itemized account and a full, correct, and accurate record of all supplies by them disbursed, to whom disbursed, and file the proper

vouchers therefor in their report hereafter required to be made. They shall also report the disposition made of all moneys by them received, whether from the state or from private individuals. They shall also keep and report all supplies, provisions, food, clothing of every kind, name, and nature by them received from private sources, and also what distribution was made of the same. And they shall, from month to month, or as near as may practicable, file a full itemized report of their actings and doings under the provisions of this bill with the secretary of state.



SEC. 9. All officers mentioned in this bill shall Liability of be and are hereby held responsible upon their official bonds for all items of property, money, or anything of value coming to their hands for the relief of the sufferers provided for in this bill.


SEC. 10. Be it further enacted, That the treas- Bond of urer of the state relief commission hereby created shall give bond in the sum of forty thousand ($40,000) dollars to the state of Nebraska for the faithful performance of his duty under the provisions of this act, and for the distribution of all funds, property, and moneys coming into his hands to the sufferers, in accordance with the provisions of this act. Said bond to be approved by the president and secretary of the commission.

SEC. 11. There being an emergency for the im- Emergency. passage of this bill, this act shall take effect

mediate passage

and be in force immediately after its passage.

Approved February 6, 1891.

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