SONS OF DEWITT COLONY TEXAS
© 2000, Wallace L. McKeehan, All Rights Reserved
Coahuila y Tejas-Index
THE CONSTITUTION OF COAHUILA AND TEXAS
The Governor of the Free State of Coahuila and Texas, to all its inhabitants---Know, that the Constituent Congress of the same State has Decreed and sanctioned the following political Constitution of the free State of Coahuila and Texas.
ARTICLE 1. The State of Coahuila and Texas consists in the union of all its inhabitants.
2. It is free and independent of the other united Mexican states, and of every other foreign power and dominion.
3. The Sovereignty of the State resides originally and essentially in the general mass of the individuals who compose it; but these do not of themselves execute any other acts of sovereignty than those designated in this Constitution, and in the form which it prescribes.
4. In all matters relating to the Mexican Federation, the State delegates its faculties and powers to the General Congress of the same, but in all that properly relates to the administration and entire government of the State, it retains its liberty, independence, and sovereignty.
5. THEREFORE, Belongs exclusively to the same State, the right to establish by means of its representatives, its fundamental laws, conformably to the basis sanctioned in the Constitutional Act and the General Constitution.
6. The Territory of the State is the same which comprehends the Provinces heretofore known by the name of Coahuila and Texas. A constitutional law shall fix their Iimits with respect to the other adjoining States of the Mexican Federation.
7. The Territory of the State is divided for the present for its better administration, into three departments, which shall be---BEXAR---which district is extended to the whole of the Territory, which corresponds to that called the Province of TEXAS, which alone is a district. MONCLOVA, which comprehends the district of this name and that of the RIO GRANDE SALTILLO, which embraces the district of this name and that of PARRAS.
8. Congress hereafter shall have power to alter, vary, and modify this division of the territory of the State, in the manner it may deem most conducive to the felicity of the people.
9. The Apostolic Catholic Religion is that of the State; this it protects by wise and just laws, and prohibits the exercise of any other.
10. The State shall regulate and defray the expenses which, may be necessary for the preservation of worship, in conformity with the regulation of the Concordats, which the nation shall celebrate with the Holy See, and by the laws it shall dictate relative to the exercise of patronage in the whole Federation.
11. Every man who inhabits the Territory of the State, although he be in transit, shall enjoy the imprescriptible rights, of liberty, security, property, and equality; and it is the duty of the same state to conserve, and protect by laws, wise and equitable, those general rights of mankind.
12. It is also an obligation on the State, to protect all its inhabitants in the right which they have to write, print, and publish freely their thoughts, and political opinions, without the necessity of examination, revision, or censure, anterior to the publication, under the restrictions and responsibilities established, or which hereafter may be established, by general laws on the subject.
13. In this State no person shall be born a slave, after this Constitution is published in the capital of each District, and six months thereafter, neither will the introduction of slaves be permitted under any pretext.
14. It is the duty of every man who inhabits the State to obey its laws, respect its constituted authorities, and contribute to the support of the same State, in the mode which it asks.
15. To the State belongs every species of vacant goods in its Territories, and those of its intestate inhabitants who have no legitimate successor in the manner laid down by the laws.
16. The State is composed only of two classes of persons, to wit: inhabitants of Coahuila and Texas (Coahuiltejanos), and citizens of Coahuila and Texas.
17. Those are inhabitants of Coahuila and Texas (Coahuilteuanos): First, All men born and domesticated in the Territory of the State, and their descendants. Secondly, those born in any other part of the Territory of the Federation, or those who fix their domicile in this State. Thirdly, those foreigners who are legitimately established in the State, be they of what nation they may. Fourthly, those foreigners who obtain from Congress letters of naturalization, or have a domicile in the State, obtained according to the law which shall be passed as soon as the Congress of the Union fixes the general rule of naturalization, which it ought to establish conformably to the 26th clause of the faculties which the Federal Constitution designates.
18. Those are citizens of Coahuila and Texas (Coahuiltejanos):---First, All men born in the State, and who are domiciliated in any part of its Territory. Secondly, all citizens of the othor States and Territories of the Federation, as soon as they become domiciliated in the State. Thirdly, all the children of Mexican citizens, who have been born out of the Territory of the Federation, and who fix their domicile in the State. Fourthly, the foreigners who are actually and legally domiciliated in the State, whatever may have been the country of their nativity. Fifthly, foreigners who enjoy the rights of inhabitants of Coahuila and Texas, have obtained from Congress special letters of citizenship-the laws will prescribe the merits and circumstances requisite for the concession of such.
19. Those born in the Territory of the Federation, and those foreigners resident in it (with the exception of their, children), who, at the time of the proclamation of the political emancipation of the nation, were unfaithful to the cause of independence, and emigrated to a foreign country, or that dependent on the Spanish government, are neither entitled to the rights of domiciliation, nor citizenship, in said State.
20. The rights of citizenship are lost---First, By acquiring naturalization in a foreign country. Secondly, by acquiring a station of profit, or honour, under a foreign government, without permission of Congress. Thirdly, by sentence legally obtained, which imposes personal or infamous punishments. Fourthly, by selling his vote, or buying that of another, for himself or for a third person, whether in popular assemblies, or in any other whatever; and of trust in the same assemblies, either as presidents, tellers, or secretaries, or in the exercise of any other public functions. Fifthly, for having resided five consecutive years out of the limits of the Territory of the Federation, without commission of the general government, or particular one of the State, or without its leave.
21. He that has lost the rights of citizenship cannot regain them without the express act of restoration of Congress.
22. The exercise of the same rights are suspended---First, for physical or moral incapacity, previously ascertained by judicial decision. Secondly, for not being twenty-one years complete, except those who are married, who can enter upon the exercise of these rights from the time they contract matrimony, of whatever age they may be. Thirdly, for being a debtor to the public funds, the time of payment elapsed, legal requisition therefore made, and not complied with. Fourthly, for having been prosecuted criminally, unless the defendant is absolved of the matter, or condemned to punishment not painful or infamous. Fifthly, for not having an employment, trade, or any known method of obtaining a livelihood. Sixthly, for not knowing how to read and write; but this shall not take effect until the year 1850, with regard to those who hereafter enter into the rights of citizenship.
23. The rights of citizenship can only be destroyed or suspended for the causes stated in articles 20 and 22.
24. None but citizens who are in the exercise of their rights can vote for popular employments in the State, in those instances stated in the law; and these only can obtain the said employments, or any others in the same State.
25. Professional employments form an exception to the second part of the anterior article, which employments can also be conferred on foreigners.
FORM OF THE STATE GOVERNMENT.
26. The object of the state government is the happiness of the individuals which compose it, for the end of all political society is no other than the welfare of the associated.
27. The officers of the government, invested with whatever kind of authority, are no more than mere agents or commissioners of the state, responsible to it for their public conduct.
28. The government of the state is popular representative federal; in consequence, it shall not have in it any hereditary office or privilege.
29. The supreme power of the state is divided for its exercise, into Legislative, Executive, and Judicial, and never can these three powers, nor two of them, be united in one corporation or person, nor the Legislative power deposited in one individual.
30. The exercise of the Legislative power shall reside in a Congress composed of deputies popularly elected.
31. The exercise of the Executive power shall reside in a citizen, who shall be denominated Governor of the State, and who shall also be chosen popularly.
32. The exercise of the judicial power shall reside in the Tribunals and Courts which the Constitution establishes.
TITLE 1st.-Of the Legislative power of the State.
SECTION 1st. Of the deputies of Congress.
33. The Congress consists of the deputies which represent the State, chosen conformably to this Constitution; its number shall be that of twelve members proprietary, and six supernumerary members, until the year 1832.
34. The Congress in that year, and in the last of every ten years which follow, shall have power to augment the number of deputies, under the standard of one for every 7000 souls.
35. The election of proprietary deputies and supernumeraries shall be held in all and every one of the districts of the State. A law shall fix the number of deputies of one and the other class which each district ought to appoint.
36. To be a deputy, proprietary, or supernumerary, it is required to have, at the time of the election, the following qualities: First, to be a citizen in the exercise of his rights. Secondly, to be of the full age of twenty-five years. Thirdly, to be an inhabitant of the State, with residence in it for two years immediately before the election. To natives of the State it is sufficient to possess the two first requisites.
37. It is necessary for those not born in the Territory of the Federation, in order to be deputies, proprietary, or supernumerary, to have had eight years' residence in it, and to be worth 8,000 dollars in property, or to have an income of some business of 1,000 dollars annually, and the qualifications provided in the foregoing Article.
38. There are excepted from the foregoing, those born in any other part of the Territory of America, which in the year 1810 depended on Spain, and which may not have united itself to any other nation, nor remained in dependence on Spain; to those it is sufficient that they have been three years, complete, in the Mexican Republic, and possess the requisites prescribed in Article 36.
39. Those cannot be deputies, proprietary, or supernumerary; First, The Governor, or Vice-Governor of the State; the members of the Council of Government; those employed in the Federation; the Civil Functionaries of the State Government; the Ecclesiastics who exercise any species of jurisdiction, or authority in some part of the district where the election may be held; foreigners, at the time when war may exist between the country of their nativity and Mexico.
40. In order that those public functionaries of the Federation, or of the State, comprehended in the anterior article, may be elected deputies, they ought absolutely to have ceased the exercise of their functions four months before the election.
41. If the same individual shall be named deputy proprietary for two or more districts, the election of that district in which he actually resides shall have preference. If he does not reside in either, the election of the district of his origin shall have preference. If he was neither a resident nor a native of some one of the said districts, that shall stand which the same elected deputy shall designate. In either of these cases, or of the death or inability of the deputies proprietary to discharge their functions according to the judgment of Congress, their duties shall devolve upon the respective deputies supernumerary.[sdct]
42. If it shall happen that the same citizen is elected deputy supernumerary for two or more districts, in this case the same order of preference provided for in the three first parts of the anterior Article prevails. And in the district which remains without a deputy supernumerary, the vacancy shall be filled up by the person who, in the respective electoral assembly, had the next greatest number of votes. In case of a tie it shall be decided by lot (suerte).
43. The deputies, during the discharge of their commissions, shall obtain from the public Treasury of the State the compensation which the anterior Congress shall assign; and they shall also receive what may appear necessary for their expenses in going to the place of session, and in returning from thence to their houses on the close of the session.
44. The deputies at no time, and in no case, nor before any authority, shall be responsible for the opinions which they manifest in the discharge of their duties. In criminal cases instituted against them, they shall be judged by the Tribunals which will be hereafter mentioned; and from the day of their appointment until they have completed the two years of their deputation, they cannot be accused unless before Congress, which is constituted a Grand jury to declare if there is, or is not, cause for an accusation. In the mean time, during the session, the deputies cannot be sued in civil suits for debts.
45. During the time of their deputation, counting for this purpose from the day of their appointment, they cannot obtain for themselves any employment from the government, nor shall they solicit it for others, nor even for their promotion, except it be in the regular order of office.
SECTION 2. Of the Nomination of the Deputies.
46. For the election of the deputies, there shall be held electoral municipal assemblies, and electoral district assemblies. Paragraph first, of the electoral municipal assemblies.
47. The electoral municipal assemblies shall be composed of the citizens who are in the exercise of their rights, and who may be inhabitants and residents within the limits of their respective Ayuntamientos, and no person of this can be excused from attending.
48. These assemblies shall be celebrated the first Sunday and the following day of the month of August, of the year anterior to the renovation of Congress, in order to nominate the electors of the district who are to choose the deputies, and eight days previously, the president of every Ayuntamiento, without the necessity of other order, shall call together the citizens of his district, by a proper notice, or as may be the custom, that they shall convene to make the elections at the time and in the form which this Constitution requires, giving prompt notification to the villages of the same district for the information of the inhabitants.
49. In order that the citizens may assist with the greater convenience, every Ayuntamiento, according to its locality and the population of its territory, shall determine the number of municipal assemblies which it ought to form in its limits, and the public places in which they have to be held, designating the limits of each.
50. They shall be presided, one by the political Chief or Alcalde, and the remainder by other individuals of the Ayuntamiento to whom it falls by lot, and in default of these, that corporation shall appoint as President of the respective municipal assembly an inhabitant of its own district, who shall know how to read and write.
51. On the aforesaid Sunday in August, at the hour of meeting, the citizens who have convened in the place designated for it, shall open the said assembly by appointing from amongst themselves, by a plurality of votes, one Secretary and two Tellers, who shall know how to read and write.
52. The elections shall be opened on the two days mentioned in Article 48, for the space of four hours each day, divided between the morning and the evening, and in every one of these assemblies there shall be a Register, in which shall be written the votes of the citizens who come together ro name the electors of the district, setting down in alphabetical order the names of the voters and those voted for.
53. To be an elector of a district, it is necessary to be a citizen in the exercise of his rights, of the age of twenty-five years complete, to know how to read and write, and to be an inhabitant and resident in some part of the same district the year immediately anterior to the election.
54. Every citizen shall choose by voice or writing the respective electors of the district, whose names (the election being had according to the former mode) the voter shall designate in a loud- voice, and it shall be entered in a list and then read by the Secretary; and it is indispensable that it should be written in the Register in presence of the voter. No person shall vote for himself in this or any other instance. of the election, under the penalty of losing the right to vote.
55. In those districts in which there is to be chosen only one deputy, there shall be appointed eleven electors, and in that which can choose two or more, there shall be appointed twenty-one electors.
56. The doubts or controversies that may arise, whether any person or persons present possess the qualification of voters, shall be decided verbally by the assembly, and its decision shall be executed without appeal, for this time and object only provided, that such doubt shall not turn upon the construction of this Constitution or other law. If the said resolution shall result in a tie, the doubt shall be considered removed.
57. Should complaints arise that bribery, corruption, or force had been used to determine the election in favour of particular persons, a public and verbal investigation shall be made thereof, and should it appear that the accusation is true, those who have committed the crime shall be deprived of all voice in the election, and the caluminator shall suffer the same penalty; and from this judgment there shall be no appeal. Doubts which arise as to the quality of proof shall be decided by the assembly, in the manner prescribed in the preceding Article.
58. Municipal assemblies shall be held with open doors and without any guard whatever; and no individual, whatever his class may be, shall present himself in them armed.
59. On completion of the two days for which the election is to be kept open, the President, Tellers, and Secretary of each assembly, shall proceed to sum up the votes which each citizen has received, in the Register, which shall be signed by the said officers; and by this operation the assembly shall be dissolved; and any other act which may be done shall not only be considered null, but as an attempt against the public security. The said Register shall be delivered sealed to the Secretary of the respective Ayuntamientos.
60. On the second Sunday of the said month of August the Ayuntamientos shall convene in their respective halls in public session. In their presence, and also with the assistance of the President, Tellers, and Secretary of the municipal assemblies, the Registers shall be opened, and after examining the whole of them, a general list shall be formed in alphabetical order, in which shall be comprehended all the individuals voted for, and the number of votes they have received.
61. This list and the certificate which shall be extended on the subject, shall be signed by the President of the Ayuntamiento, the Secretary of it, and the Secretaries of the assemblies; after which, two copies of the said lists shall be drawn off, certified by the same persons, one of which shall be immediately posted up in the next public place, and the other shall be delivered with the accompanying official letter, signed by the President of the Ayuntamiento, to two individuals appointed by that body to proceed to the capital of the district, there to form a general classification of votes in union with the commissioners of the other Ayuntamientos.
62. On the fourth Sunday in August, the commissioners of the Ayuntamientos shall present themselves with their credentials of election to the political Chief, or in his absence to the first Alcalde, of the capital of the district, and, presided by the first or by the second, as the case may be, shall assemble in public session in the town-hall; and after examining all the lists, they shall form a general list of all the individuals voted for as electors of the district by the citizens of each municipal district respectively, exr Messing the number of votes they have had and the place of their residence.
63. In order to make this general regulation of votes, the concurrence of not less than four of the commissioners is requisite. In those districts in which there is not that number, the Ayuntamiento of the capital shall name from amongst the individuals of its own body the number deficient.
64. The citizens who, upon the result of this general scrutiny, have the greatest. number of votes on the list, shall be considered constitutionally appointed for electors. In case of a tie amongst two or more individuals, it shall be decided by lot.
65. The aforesaid list, and all acts relative to the business, shall be attested by the President, the Commissioners, and the Secretary of the Ayuntamiento of the capital of the district. There shall be extracted copies of one, and the other certified by the same; and they shall be remitted by the President to the permanent deputation of Congress, the Governor of the State, and the different municipalities of the district.
66. The same President shall pass, without any delay, the corresponding certificate to the electors appointed, that they may go to the capital of the department on the day named by the Constitution, in order to celebrate the electoral assembly of the same. Secretaries, upon which the permanent deputation shall cease in all its functions, and those of its members not re-elected having retired, the President of Congress shall declare that it is solemnly and legitimately constituted.
83. For the celebration of the ordinary and extraordinary sessions of Congress, the deputies shall meet four days previous to its organization, in the manner prescribed in the first part of Article 80, in order to resolve in the manner expressed in the second part of the same Article upon the legitimacy of the credentials and qualifications of the new deputies who present themselves; and having approved of them, the deputies shall immediately take the oath prescribed by Article 81, and in continuation, shall proceed to make nomination of the President, Vice President, and Secretaries, in the same manner which is provided in Article 82. [sdct]
84. The Congress shall open its ordinary sessions the first day of January in every year, and the first day of September in each year following the renovation of the same Congress; the Governor of the State being obliged to assist upon so important an occasion, when he shall pronounce a suitable discourse, which the President of Congress shall answer in general terms.
85. On the day after the opening of the ordinary session, the Governor shall present in person to Congress a written account of the state of the public administration, proposing such amendments or reforms as may be required in its different branches.
86. The session of Congress shall be held daily, without other interruption than those of solemn festivals. All the proceedings shall be public, with the exception of those which treat of reserved business, which may be secret.
87. The ordinary sessions of Congress, which commence the first day of January, shall last that month and the three following, February, March, and April, and cannot be prorogued to any other month, except in the two following instances; first, by petition of the Governor, and secondly, if the same Congress deem it necessary-for this, there must be the concurrence, in both cases, of the vote of two-thirds of the deputies. The ordinary sessions, which commence on the first of September, shall last thirty days of the said month, without any power to prorogue on any motive or pretext whatever. Both sessions shall be closed with the same formalities which are prescribed for their opening.
88. Before the conclusion of the ordinary session of Congress there shall be appointed of that body a permanent deputation, composed of three individuals proprietary, and one supernumerary, which shall continue all the intervening time between one ordinary session and the other; and its President shall be its first appointed individual, and its Secretary the last individual proprietary.
89. When in the intervening time between one ordinary session and another, circumstances or business shall occur requiring the meeting of Congress, it can be convoked for extraordinary sessions, provided it is sanctioned by the unanimous vote of two-thirds of the members of the permanent deputation and of the council of government, for that purpose.
90. If the circumstances or business which caused the extraordinary convocation of Congress should be very weighty and urgent, the permanent deputation united with the council of government and the other deputies which are in the capital, shall immediately take such necessary measures as the exigency shall require, and shall give an account thereof to Congress as soon as it may meet.
91. When Congress meet in extraordinary sessions, there shall be called to the same the deputies who ought to assist at the ordinary sessions of that year, and they shall be exclusively occupied upon the business or businesses for which they have been convoked; but if they have not concluded against the day on which they ought to meet in ordinary sessions, they shall postpone those and continue the business for which the extraordinary session had been convoked.
92. The holding of the extraordinary sessions shall not impede the election of the new deputies at- the time prescribed in this Constitution.
93. The extraordinary sessions shall be opened and closed with the same solemnities as the ordinary sessions.
94. The resolutions which Congress may take upon the change of its residence, or the prorogation of its sessions, shall be. executed by the Governor without any observations upon them.
95. The Congress, in all that belongs to its government and interior order, shall observe the regulations formed by the present, having power to make the reforms it may deem necessary.
96. The deputies shall be renewed totally every two years. Those of the anterior Congress can be re-chosen but they cannot be compelled to accept this trust unless there should be a vacancy of one half of the deputation. There shall be excepted in this Article the deputies of the present Congress, who cannot be re-elected for the next Constitutional Congress.
SECTION 4th. Of the Attributes of Congress, and of the Permanent Deputation.
97. The exclusive attributes of Congress are first to decree, interpret, reform, or abolish, the laws relative to the Administration, and interior government of the State in all its branches. Secondly, to regulate the votes which the citizens may have obtained in the electoral assemblies for Governor, Vice-Governor, and for members of the council of government, and to appoint those officers whenever it shall devolve upon them to do so. Thirdly, to decide by secret ballot the ties which may happen between two or more individuals, in the election of the before-mentioned officers. Fourthly, to resolve the doubts which may arise upon these elections and upon the qualifications of the elected. Fifthly, to examine the excuses which the elected may allege for not accepting these stations, and to determine them. Sixthly, to form themselves into a Grand jury, and to declare whether there are or are not grounds of accusation for neglect of official duty, as well as for ordinary crimes against the deputies of Congress, the Governor, the Vice-Governor, the members of the Council, the Secretary of State, and the individuals of the Supreme Court of justice of the State. Seventhly, to render effective the responsibility of these public functionaries, and to do in this case that which is so necessary with respect to all others employed. Eighthly, to fix every year the public expenses of the State, having in view the reports on the subject which shall be presented by the Governor. Ninthly, to establish or confirm the taxes or contributions necessary to cover these expenses, under the regulations of this Constitution, and the general one of the Federation to regulate their collection, determine their application, and approve of their distribution. Tenthly, to examine and approve the accounts of the application of all the public funds of the State. Eleventh, to contract debts in case of necessity upon the credit of the State, and to designate the guarantees for their liquidation. Twelfth, to decree whatever may be necessary for the administration, conservation, or alteration of the goods of the State. Thirteenth, to create, suspend, or suppress the public officers of the State; and to fix, diminish, or augment their salaries or pensions. Fourteenth, to grant premiums or recompences to corporations or persons, who have rendered distinguished services to the State, and to decree posthumous public honours to the memory of great men. Fifteenth, to regulate the manner of recruiting the men which may be necessary for the service, or to fill up the permanent presidial militia, companies of cavalry, and the active militia of the same army, auxiliary to that which are destined by the institution to the defence of the State, approve of the distribution which may be made among the towns of the State of their respective quotas, to effect this object. Sixteenth, to decree that which may be necessary for the enrolling and instruction of the civic militia of the State, and the appointment of its officers conformably to th° discipline prescribed, or which shall be prescribed by general laws. Seventeenth, to promote and encourage, by laws, public information, and education, and the progress of the sciences, arts, and useful establishments, removing the obstacles which may palsy objects so commendable. Eighteenth, to protect the political liberty of the press. Nineteenth, to attend to, and give or deny their consent to all those acts and cases for which this Constitution has provided.
98. The attributes of the permanent deputation are, first, to watch over the observance of the Constitutional Act, the Constitution, and general laws of the Union, and the particular ones of the State, in order to give an account to Congress of infractions thereof, which they may observe. Second, to convoke the Congress for extraordinary sessions in those cases, and in the manner prescribed by this Constitution. Third, to discharge the functions which are prescribed in Articles 79 and 80. Fourth, to give notice to the supernumeraries of the time when they shall come to the Congress in the place of the deputies proprietary; and if the death or absolute inability of one or more of them should occur, to communicate the corresponding orders to the respective districts, in order that they may proceed to a new election. Fifth, to receive the testimonies of the acts of the elections of the electoral assemblies of the district, for Governor, Vice-Governor, and members of the Council of Government, and to deliver them to Congress, as soon as it may be installed.
SECTION 5th. Of the Formation and Promulgation of the Laws.
APPENDIX TO THIS TITLE---Of the Election of Deputies for the General Congress of the Federation.
109. On the first Sunday of the said month of October, the electors having met, and more than one half of the whole being present, they shall proceed to the appointment of the deputies, who shall go from the State to the general Congress of the Federation, in the form laid down by this Constitution, for the appointment of those to the State Congress. This being done, the assembly will do what is necessary to comply with the provisions of the 17th Article of the Federal Constitution, and shall dissolve.
TITLE 2. Of the Executive Power of the State.
SECTION 1. Of the Governor.
110. The Governor of the State ought to possess, at the time of his appointment, the following qualifications: First, to be a citizen in the exercise of his rights. Second, to be born in the Territory of the Republic. Third, to be of the age of thirty years, complete. Fourth, an inhabitant of this State; with residence in it for five years, and two of them immediately before his election.
111. The ecclesiastics, the military, and others employed by the Federation, and in the actual service of the same, cannot obtain the office of Governor.
112. The Governor of the State shall continue four years in the discharge of his office, and cannot be re-chosen for the same office until the fourth year after he has ceased from its functions.
113. The prerogatives of the Governor, the attributes, and restrictions of his faculties are the following:---
PREROGATIVES OF THE GOVERNOR.
First, The Governor can make observations upon the laws and decrees of Congress, in the manner and form prescribed in Article 102, suspending their publication until the resolution of the same Congress, unless in the cases excepted in this Constitution. Second, he has power to propose laws or reforms to Congress, which he believes may conduce to the general good of the State. Third, he can pardon delinquents under the regulation of the laws. Fourth, the Governor can not be arraigned by any one for offences committed at the time of his administration nor during it, nor until one year afterwards, counting from the day on which he has ceased his functions, unless before the Congress, and that time being elapsed, not even before the Congress.
ATTRIBUTES OF THE GOVERNOR.
First, to provide for the preservation of order and public tranquillity in the interior of the State, and the security of the exterior, disposing for both these objects, of the militia of the State, whereof the said Governor is commander-in-chief. Second, to cause the observance of the Constitutional Act, the general Constitution, and that of the State, and of the laws, decrees, and orders of the Federation, and of the Congress of the State; issuing their decrees and necessary orders for their execution. Third, to form upon consultation with the Council, those instructions and regulations which he believes necessary for the better government of the branches of the public administration of the State, which he shall pass to the Congress for its approbation. Fourth, to fill, under the regulation of the Constitution and the laws, all thé offices of the State, which are not electoral, and which are not otherwise provided for by those laws. Fifth, to appoint, and freely dismiss, the Secretary of State. Sixth, to take care that justice is administered promptly and completely by the tribunals and courts of the State, and that their sentences are executed. Seventh, to take care of the administration and collection of all the rents of the State, and to decree their application in conformity with the laws. Eighth, to suspend from their offices for three months, and even to deprive them of one-half of their salaries for the same time, after hearing the opinion of the Council of State, all those in the employment of the State, under the Executive department thereof, and of its nomination and appointment when they infringe its orders and decrees, passing the proceedings upon the matter to the respective tribunals, in case he believes that there is sufficient cause for accusation. Ninth, to propose to the permanent deputation the convocation of Congress in extraordinary session, whenever he deems it necessary, first having the opinion of the Council.
RESTRICTION OF THE FACULTIES OF THE GOVERNOR.
The Governor cannot, first, command in person the civic militia of the State, without the express consent of Congress, or in its recess, of the permanent deputation. When he commands, under such circumstances, the Vice-Governor shall take charge of the Government. Second, he cannot intermeddle in the examination of pending causes, nor dispose in any manner, before judgment, of the persons of criminals. Third, he cannot deprive any person of his liberty, nor impose any' punishment. But when the good and security of the State requires the arrest of any person, he has power to do so, placing the persons arrested at the disposition of the tribunal or competent judge within the term of forty-eight hours. Fourth, he cannot occupy the property of any particular person or corporation, nor embarrass him in the possession, use, or profit of it, unless it may be necessary for a known object of general- utility, according to the judgment of the Council of Government; in which case he shall have power, with the consent of the said Council, and the approbation of Congress, or in its recess, of the permanent deputation, always indemnifying the interested party according to the judgment of good men, chosen by said party, and by the Government. Fifth, he cannot impede or embarrass in any manner, or under any pretext, the popular elections determined by this Constitution and the Laws, nor prevent those laws from taking full effect. Sixth, he cannot go from the capital to any other part of the State for more than one month. If a longer absence is necessary, or if he is obliged to go from the territory of the State, he shall ask leave of Congress, and in its recess, of the permanent deputation.
114. In order to publish the laws and decrees of the Congress of the State, the Governor shall use the following form: "The Governor of State of Coahuila and Texas, to all its inhabitants, Know, that the Congress of the same State has decreed the following: (here the text of the law or decree:) THEREFORE, I command that it be printed, published, and circulated, in order that it be complied with."
SECTION 2nd. Of the Vice-Governor.
115. There shall likewise be in the State a Vice-Governor. His qualifications shall be the same as those required for Governor. His term shall be four years, and he cannot be re-elected for the same office, unless at the fourth year after he has ceased from its functions.
SECTION 3rd. Of the Council of Government.
121. For the better discharge of the functions of his office, the Governor shall have a council, which shall be denominated The Council o f Government; and shall be composed of three members proprietaries and two supernumeraries, amongst the whole of whom there can be but one ecclesiastic. [sdct]
122. To be a member of the Council of Government, the same qualifications are required as for a deputy. Those who are prohibited from being deputies cannot be councilors.
123. Every two years the council shall be removed; the first time, one of the members proprietary and supernumerary going out, who have been last appointed, and the second time, those other members proprietary and supernumerary going out, and so successively.
124. No councilor can be re-elected, except on the fourth year after having ceased from his office.
125. When the Governor of the State assists at the council, he shall preside, but without a vote, and in such case the Vice-Governor shall not assist.
126. The Secretary of the Council shall be one of its members, in the manner and form which may be established by its interior regulation, which regulation the said council shall form and present to the Governor, who shall pass it to Congress for its approbation.
127. The attributes of the Council are, first, to give a fixed opinion, and in writing, to the Governor, in all those matters in which the law imposes upon him the obligation to ask it, and on all those others on which the same Governor may think proper to consult it. Second, to watch over the observance of the Constitutional Act, the Federal Constitution, and the general laws of the Union, the Constitution, and particular laws of the State, giving an account to Congress of the infractions which it may observe. Third, to promote the advancement, and aid in the prosperity of the State in all its branches. Fourth, to recommend appointments to offices, in the cases where the law requires it. Fifth, agree in union with the permanent deputation conformably to the 89th Article, upon the convocation of extraordinary sessions of Congress, and to meet with the same deputation in order to do what ma3' be necessary in those cases mentioned in Article 90. Sixth, examine the accounts of all the public expenditure, and pass them to Congress for its approbation.
128. The council shall be responsible for all acts relative to the exercise of its powers.
SECTION 4th. Of the Election of Governor, Vice-Governor, and Councilors.
129. The day following that on which the election of deputies to Congress is made, the electoral district assemblies, all and every one of them, shall vote for a Governor, Vice-Governor, and three Councilors proprietary, and two supernumeraries, making the said election in the mode and terms prescribed in Articles 71, 72, 73, and 74.
SECTION 5th. Of the Secretary of State.
139. The despatch of the business of the supreme government of the State, of whatever class it may be, shall be placed in the charge of a Secretary, who shall be entitled Secretary of Despatch of the State Government.
SECTION 6th. Of the Chiefs of Police of Departments, and the Subaltern or Chiefs of Districts.
145. In the capital of each department of the State there shall be a functionary, to whom shall be intrusted the political government of the same, and he shall be denominated the Political Chief of the Department.
146. To be Chief of Department, it is necessary to be a citizen in the exercise of his rights, of the age of twentyfive years complete, an inhabitant of the State, and a resident in it three years, and one of them immediately previous to his election.
147. The Governor, on the proposition of the Council, supported by the recommendations of the Ayuntamientos of the respective departments, shall appoint the Chief of Department, with the exception of that of the capital.
148. The Chiefs of Department shall be immediately subject to the Governor of the State, and in no manner to each other. They shall continue four years in their offices, and may be re-appointed, the same formalities occurring as are prescribed for their first nomination.
149. In every capital in the district, except that in which the Chief of Department resides, there shall be a subaltern or district chief appointed by the Governor, on the recommendation of the Chief of Department.
150. The subaltern or district chiefs ought to possess the same qualifications as those of department, with the difference that their domicile and residence ought to be in the bounds of their district, and shall, besides, have some honest mode of living, sufficient to maintain themselves decently.
151. The duration of the district chiefs in their offices shall be the same as those of department; and on the proposition of these they can be continued in their offices.
152. No person can be excused from serving in these trusts, except in case of re-election for the same within four years after they have served, or for other sufficient cause in the judgment of the Governor, who shall decide, after hearing from the respective Chief of Department.
153. These chiefs, as well as those of department, are responsible for all their acts against the Constitution, and general laws of the Federation, and the laws of the State, the first to the Chief of Department to whom they are immediately subordinate, and those to the Governor.
154. The attributes of the different chiefs, and the manner in which they shall discharge their duties, shall be detailed in the regulations for the political economical government of the towns.
SECTION 7th. Of the Ayuntamientos.
155. It appertains to the Ayuntamientos to watch over the police and internal government of the towns of the State; and with this view they shall exist in all which have heretofore had them.
156. In the towns which may not have them, and where it is necessary they should be, they shall be placed. The capitals of districts shall have them, whatever their population may be, and also those towns, which of themselves or with their precincts, contain 1000 souls, unless they are united to another municipality; in which case, should peculiar circumstances prevent their separation, it shall be necessary, in order for them to obtain an Ayuntamiento, that Congress shall decree it, on the recommendation of the Executive, accompanied by a memorial setting forth the territory which shall compose the new municipality.
157. The towns which have not the prescribed number of souls, but which can with advantage be united to one or more, can form municipalities, which shall be formed, and the Ayuntamiento shall be established in the place which in the judgment of the Executive shall be deemed most suitable. In particular circumstances, the Congress may decree, upon previous petition and recommendation of the Governor, Ayuntamientos, in those places of lesser population.
158. In those settlements which cannot have the establishment of an Ayuntamiento, and in the interior government of which, by reason of their distance from other municipalities, cannot be taken care of, the electoral assemblies of the district to which it is attached shall appoint a commissary of police and one Syndic, (procurador,) who shall discharge the function which the regulation for the political government of the towns shall designate.
159. The Ayuntamiento shall be composed of the Alcalde or Alcaldes, Syndic or Syndics, and Alderman, whose number the said regulation shall designate.
160. To be a member of the Ayuntamiento, it is requisite to be a citizen in the exercise of his rights, more than twentyfive years of age, or being married, twenty-one years of age, to be an inhabitant of the Ayuntamiento district, with residence in it three years, one of them immediately prior to the election; to have a capital or calling upon which he can subsist, and to know how to read and write.
167. The offices of the Ayuntamiento are municipal charges from which no persons can excuse themselves.
TITLE 3. Of the Judicial Power.
ONLY SECTION. Of the Administration of Justice in general.
PARAGRAPH 1. Of the Administration of Justice in Civil Cases.
PARAGRAPH 2. Of the Administration o f Justice in Criminal Cases.
PARAGRAPH 3. Of the Inferior Courts and Superior Tribunals.
TITLE 4th. ONLY SECTION. Of the Public Revenue.
TITLE 5th. ONLY SECTION. Of the Civic Militia of the State.
211. In all the towns of the State there shall be established corps of civic militia, and these shall constitute the military force of the same.
212. The formation of these corps, their organization, discipline, and internal government, shall be regulated by Congress, conformably to the general laws of Federation on the subject.
213. The Congress shall regulate the service of this militia, so as to effect the purposes of their institution, in a manner the most useful to the state and the least burdensome to the citizens.
214. No inhabitant of Coahuila and Texas can be excused from affording his service when required by law.
TITLE 6th. ONLY SECTION. Of Public Instruction.
217. The method of instruction shall be uniform through out the State; and to facilitate this end, the Congress shall form a general plan for public instruction; and shall regulate by means of statutes and laws whatever most important object.
TITLE 7th. ONLY SECTION. Of the Observance of the Constitution.
218. The observance of the Constitution in all its parts is one of the most sacred obligations of the inhabitants of the State of Coahuila and Texas, and no one can be absolved from it, neither the Congress nor any other authority. And every inhabitant of Coahuila and Texas can insist upon this observance, making representations for this object to the Congress or to the Executive.
219. Any infraction of this Constitution creates a personal responsibility. In order to render effective this responsibility, the Congress shall issue the laws and decrees which it believes conducive to this object; and besides, every year at their first session, shall take into consideration the infractions which the permanent deputation and the Council of Government may present, and shall do what may be necessary thereon.
220. The public functionaries of the State, of whatever class they may be, shall, at the time of entering upon their offices, take the oath to observe, sustain, and defend, the Constitutional Act, the general Constitution, and that of the State., and to discharge faithfully and completely the duties of their office.
221. Propositions for the reformation, alteration, or abrogation of one or more of the Articles of this Constitution must be made in writing, and be supported and signed by two-thirds of the deputies.
222. The Congress, in whose time any of these propositions may be made, shall not act otherwise thereon in the second year of their session than by reading and publishing them, with the grounds upon which they are supported.
223. The following Congress will either admit or reject the discussion of these propositions, and being admitted, they shall be published anew by the press, and shall be circulated by the Governor, in order that they may be read in the next electoral appertains to this assemblies before they shall make the appointment of deputies to Congress.
224. In the following Congress they shall discuss the proposed alterations, reforms, or abrogations, and if they are approved of, they shall be immediately published with the Constitutional Articles.
225. In making the reforms, alterations, or abrogations indicated, besides the rules prescribed in the anterior articles, there shall be observed all those formalities provided for the passing or repealing of the Laws, with the exception of the right conceded to the Governor of making observations, which cannot take place in these cases.
GIVEN IN SALTILLO, 11th March, 1827. Santiago del Valle, President; Juan Vicent Campos, Vice President; Rafael Ramos Valdez, José María Viesca, Francisco Antonio Guttierez José Joaquim de Arce Rosalez, Mariano Varela, José María Valdez y Guajardo, José Cayetano Ramos, Deputy and Secretary; Dionisio Elisondo, Deputy and Secretary.
Therefore, I command, that it be printed, published, circulated, and complied with.
Given in Saltillo, 11th of March, 1827. JOSÉ IGNACIO ARISPE.
[Scanned and reprinted from Appendix II, Texas by William Kennedy, 1841 by W.L. McKeehan]
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