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“Justice Reed did not want to come back. He was holding a position with great honor to himself, with great benefit to the people of his State, with the unqualified admiration of the whole bar that practiced before him. It was a more congenial work to him than the work in the common law court. But he was persuaded that it was his duty to make the sacrifice and he made it, and in 1904 he came back to this Court, and in his then seven years of service added to the reputation which he had already achieved.
“Judge Collins has truly said that Justice Reed's public service has been unique; that the history of the State affords no parallel—a man who had only held his counselor's license for two years, and who was under thirty years of age entrusted by the chief executive of the State with the performance of the important duties of presiding law judge of this county, and before he was thirty-five sitting in the court over which I now preside. Forty-two or perhaps forty-one years of practically continuous service in the employ of the State not only is a public life unparalleled, but it is a life to be envied by each one of us, when we consider that during that long continued public service he not only achieved a high judicial reputation, but won the love and the respect of the whole people of his State.
"And so you will all agree with me that if ever a man deserved the enconium ‘Well done, thou good and faithful public servant,' Alfred Reed merits it.
“Governor, the Court that I am speaking for accepts the custody of the portrait which the State speaking through you has entrusted to us, and we will direct that it be hung upon the wall of this chamber in which for so many years Alfred Reed rendered valuable assistance in the administration of justice."
At the conclusion of these remarks the Court ordered that the proceedings incident to the presentation of the portrait of former Justice Alfred Reed be spread at length upon the minutes of this Court, and printed in the New Jersey Law Reports.
SUPREME COURT OF JUDICATURE
STATE OF NEW JERSEY.
JUNE TERM, 1918.
JOHN J. MCMAHON, RELATOR, v. FREDERICK RIKER,
COUNTY COLLECTOR; THE BOARD OF FREEHOLDERS
Argued February 21, 1918-Decided July 8, 1918.
1. To determine whether an amendment or a supplement to an
existing statute violates constitutional provisions, it is not to
On mandamus. Demurrer to return to alternative writ.
Before GUMMERE, CHIEF JUSTICE, and Justice KALISCH.
For the demurrant, J. Emil Ialscheid.
Albert C. Ilall, as amicus curia, was granted leave to file a brief in support of the return.
The opinion of the court was delivered by
GUH MERE, CHIEF JUSTICE. McMahon holds the office of register of deeds and mortgages in and for the county of Hudson, having been elected thereto in November, 1914. By force of an act entitled “An act respecting the fees of surrogates, county clerks and county registers of deeds and mortgages in counties of the first class and providing salaries for such officers," approved April 2d, 1898 (Pamph. L., p. 226), this office carries with it an annual salary of $7,500, to be paid in equal monthly installments in full compensation for all services rendered by the incumbent and in lieu of all fees and other compensation whatsoever theretofore provided or allowed by law. The act also authorizes these officers to employ the necessary deputies and assistants, and directs that these employes shall receive such compensation as shall be approved by the board of freeholders, and shall be paid monthly by the proper disbursing officer of the county. These recited provisions appear in section 4 of the statute. Another provision of the statute requires the payment by the various officers affected by the act of all fees, costs, allowances, percentages and other perquisites of whatever kind which should be received by them, into the county treasury for the sole use of the county.
In 1917 section 4 was amended by adding thereto the following provision : "That the said salaries, together with the compensation of the aforesaid deputies and assistants for said offices, respectively, shall not in any year exceed the revenue of said offices.” This amendment was approved March 29th (Pamph. L., p. 771). On the same day a supple
ment to the original act was approved which provided that the "moneys received by the county collector from the surrogates, county clerks and registers of deeds and mortgages, or by any assistant or other person in their office or employment, in counties of the first class in this state, pursuant to the act to which this act is a supplement, shall be placed in separate funds to the credit of the respective offices from which said moneys were received, and out of which said funds the salaries of the said surrogates, county clerks, and said registers of deeds and mortgages, and the compensation of the deputies and assistants for said officers shall be paid, and ary surplus thereafter remaining shall be retained in said funds for the use of, and until disposed of by, the boards of chosen freeholders of the respective counties, according to law." Pamph. L., p. 772.
On the 1st of December, 1917, there became due, under the provision of the act of 1898, to Mr. McMahon as register of Hudson county, the installment of salary for the month of November, 1917, amounting to $625. Payment of this installment was demanded by him from the county collector and the board of chosen freeholders, but his demand was refused upon the ground that there were no funds in the special account with which to pay him. McMahon thereupon applied to this court for a mandamus compelling such payment. An alternative writ having been allowed, the defendauts made return setting up as a defence lack of funds in the special account created by the supplement of 1917 with which to pay the installment. The relator demurred; and the sole question submitted to us on the argument was whether snch lack of funds in this account at the time the demand was made constituted a legal excuse for the refusal to pay the installment of salary.
Counsel for McMahon contends that both the amendment and the supplement to the act of 1898 are void because in conflict with the constitution of the state. He further argues that if this contention is not sound, the payment was improperly refused “because no full year has yet expired since the said amendment and supplement went into effect, and it
is therefore impossible to judge whether the limitations placed upon the register's salary by the enactment of 1917 will prevent the payment of the full salary to the register.”
The first attack made upon the constitutionality of these statutory provisions is that the original act is, by its title, confined to the fees of the designated officers, and the salaries to be paid such officers, and that provisions in the amendment and supplement looking to the operation of these offices, the employment of the necessary assistants, and the compensation to be paid to them, as well as the specific funds out of which such payments are to be made, violate that provision of our state constitution which provides that every statute shall embrace but one object, which object shall be expressed in the title.
Counsel is clearly in error in asserting that power was granted to sheriffs, county clerks and county registers, in counties of the first class, to employ deputies and assistants, by the amendment of 1917. That power was granted by the original act of 1898, as is shown by the recitals there from already set forth. So, too, the provision relating to the compensation of such employes is contained in the primary statute. This, however, seems not important, for in determining whether an amendment or a supplement to an existing statute violates constitutional provisions, the amendment or supplement is not to be examined as an independent enactment, but is to be considered in connection with, and as a part of, thie statute upon which it is engrafted; and if the amendment, or the supplement, does not operate to render the statute, in its altered form, unconstitutional, it is valid legislation. Central R. R. Co. v. State Board of Assessors, 75 N. J. 1.771.
Looking at the legislation now under consideration, in its present shape, the fundamental purpose exhibited therein is to compel the several incumbents of the enumerated offices to so conduct the business thereof that the expenses of operation shall not be larger than the receipts; in other words, that the compensation paid to the incumbent and his subordinates shall not exceed the fees and emoluments paid in to him. What the causes were which brought about the enactment