WALKLEY V. CITY V. MUSCATINE, 73 U. S. 481 (1867)

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U.S. Supreme Court

Walkley v. City v. Muscatine, 73 U.S. 6 Wall. 481 481 (1867)

Walkley v. City v. Muscatine

73 U.S. (6 Wall.) 481


After judgment at law for a sum of money against a municipal corporation, sued execution returned unsatisfied, mandamus, not bill in equity, is the proper mode to compel the levy of a tax which the corporation was bound to levy to pay the judgment.

A bill had been filed in that court to compel the authorities of the City of Muscatine to levy a tax upon the property of the inhabitants, for the purpose of paying the interest on certain bonds, to the amount of $130,000, that had been issued for the benefit of the Mississippi & Missouri Railroad Company. It appeared that a judgment had been recovered in the same court against the city for $7,666, interest due on the bonds held by the plaintiff; that execution had been issued and returned unsatisfied, no property being found liable to execution; that the mayor and aldermen had

Page 73 U. S. 482

been requested to levy a tax to pay the judgment, but had refused; that the city authorities possessed the power under their charter to impose a tax of one percent on the valuation of the property of the city, and had made a levy annually, but had appropriated the proceeds to other purposes, and wholly neglected to pay the interest on the bounds before the judgment, or to pay the judgment since it was rendered. The bill prayed that the mayor and aldermen might be decreed to levy a tax, and appropriate so much of the proceeds as might be sufficient to pay the judgment, interest, and costs. An answer was put in, and replication and proofs taken. On the hearing, the court dismissed the bill. The creditor appealed.

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