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Ralls County Court v. United States, 105 U.S. 733 (1881)

Ralls County Court v. United States

105 U.S. 733


1. Where judgment has been duly obtained in Missouri against a county upon coupons detached from its bonds, no defense which questions their validity can be pleaded to a mandamus commanding the county court to pay the judgment from moneys in the treasury, or raise the means therefor by the levy of a special tax.

2. If not restrained by some valid special limitation upon the exercise of its taxing power, a county, authorized by law to contract an extraordinary debt by the issue of negotiable securities can levy a tax sufficient to meet the principal and interest as they respectively mature. United States v. New Orleans, 99 U. S. 682, cited upon this point and approved.

3. A general law confining the annual tax "to defray the expenses of the county" to a fixed percentum is not applicable to such a debt.

4. After the debt was created, laws passed depriving the county court of the requisite power to levy the tax which it possessed when the bonds were issued are invalid.

The facts were stated in the opinion of the Court.

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