PORTLAND DALLES AND SALT LAKE RAIL-ROAD.
AS REPORTED BY SENATOR JAS. K. KELLY, FROM THE SENATE COMMITTEE ON RAILROADS, MAY 4, 1874.
A BILL providing for the construction for the Portland, Dalles and Salt Lake Railroad and Tele-graph, and for the performance of all Government service thereon free of charge.
Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Rep-resentatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled. That the Portland, Dalles and Salt Lake Railroad, extending from a a point on the Union Pacific or Central Pacific Railroad not farther east than Ogden nor far-ther west than "Kelton, in the Territory of Utah, to Portland, in the State of Oregon, is hereby declared a military and post road; and the Portland, Dalles and Salt Lake Railroad Company, by its own cars, appropriate for the service and approved by the Postmaster-Gen-eral, and with its own rolling-stock, equip-ment and management, without fee or reward, except as hereinafter mentioned, shall forever transport the United States mail, Army and Indian supplies, troops and munitions of war of every kind; and shall transmit all dis-patches upon its telegraph line for the United States Government free of charge.
SECTION 2. That the Portland, Dalles and Salt Lake Railroad shall be constructed in a substantial and workmanlike manner, with all the necessary draws, culverts, bridges, via-ducts, crossings, turn-outs, stations, and water-ing places; and all other appurtenances, in-cluding furniture and rolling-stock, equal in all respects to railroads of the first class when prepared for business, with rails of the T or angle iron, and upon the narrow-gauge plan, three feet in width; with a telegraph line, constructed in a substantial manner, to be, operated along the line of said railroad. And the said Company shall commence the work on such road within one year from the ap-proval of this act, and complete the same with-in five years thereafter.
SEC. 3. That in consideration of the ser-vices herein agreed to be performed by the Portland, Dalles and Salt Lake Railroad Com-pany, the United States guarantee, as herein after expressed, the payment of interest, at the rate of five per centum per annum in gold coin, payable half yearly on the first days of January and July in each year, for the period of ten years, upon the construction bonds of said Company, to the amount of $8,000 only, for each and every mile of the main line of said railroad, not including sidetracks. And for that purpose, and as evidence thereof, the Secretary of the Treasury is hereby authorized and directed to cause to be indorsed said guar-antee of interest on behalf of the United States upon the construction bonds of said corporation, to the extent mentioned in this section, for not exceeding in the whole seven j hundred miles of single track from its ter-minal point, as the same shall be established upon the line of the Union Pacific Railroad, or the Central Pacific Railroad, as hereinbefore stated, to the city of Portland, its western terminus.
SEC. 4. That whenever, and as often as the said corporation shall have completed a section of its road, of not less than twenty-five miles, it shall report such fact to the Secretary of the Interior, who shall thereupon cause an exam-ination of the same to be made by three com-missioners, to be appointed by him, who shall be paid for their services at the expense of said corporation; and if it shall appear by the report of said Commissioners, that such section has been completed substantially in accordance with the requirements of this act, then the Sec-retary of the Interior shall report that fact to the Secretary of the Treasury, who shall there-upon cause the said guarantee of interest to be indorsed on an amount of the above-described bonds of the said company, equal to the said sum of $8,000 per mile on such completed section; and shall deliver the same to the lawful agent, attorney, or representative of said com-pany. The said construction-bonds shall be made payable by the said company in the city of New York at a specified time, not more than 20 years from the date thereof, with coupons attached for the half-yearly interest, which shall also be made payable in the city of New York. All coupons attached to said bonds so indorsed and delivered, the time for the pay-ment of which shall have elapsed before such delivery, shall be cancelled and preserved, and the guarantee of interest on the part of the Uni-ted States shall only commence with the half-yearly payment next after the indorsement and delivery of the said bonds to the said cor-poration at the rate aforesaid. No indorsement or delivery of such bonds shall be made by the Secretary of the Treasury upon the last two section's of 25 miles each of the said main line of railroad until it shall appear from the report of said Commissioners that the same shall be completed according to the requirements of this act; and that effectual railroad connection has been made by said company, as herein proposed, from the Union Pacific, or the Cen-tral Pacific Railroad, to the city of Portland; provided, however, that if the said company shall first construct those portions of its railroad known as the Portage Links, around the Cas-cade Falls, and the Dalles of the Columbia, and complete the same before any other por-tion of the said road along the Columbia river, so as to facilitate navigation and lessen the ex-penses of transporting freight and passengers on said river, then, and in that case, it shall be the duty of the Secretary of the Interior, upon an application of the said company, to cause an examination of the same to be made by the Commissioners, as herein provided; and if it shall appear by their report that either of those portions of said road has been completed, as required by this act, then the Secretary of the Interior shall report that fact to the Secre-tary of the Treasury, who shall thereupon cause the said guarantee of interest to be in-dorsed on an amount of the above-described bonds equal to the said sum of $8,000 per mile of completed road over either of said portages, although the portion so constructed may not be equal to a section of 25 miles.
SEC. 5. That nothing herein contained shall be so construed as to prevent the said corpora-tion from issuing and disposing of its bonds in accordance with the powers granted to it by the State of Oregon by an act dated October fifteenth, eighteen hundred and seventy-two, or any act amendatory thereof; but all such bonds and the mortgages, trust deeds, or other securities given to secure the payment thereof, shall, in all cases, be subordinate to the rights and powers herein reserved to the United States. And the services to be rendered by the said railroad and telegraph line for the United States Government shall inhere in and become a part of the corporate existence of the said company; and shall be a lien upon and attach to the said railroad, its road-bed, rolling stock and equipments, and to the said telegraph line. And such services shall be performed by the said corporation, its assigns, and successors, whether such transfer or succession be made by volun-tary act of said corporation, by act of the Leg-islature of the State of Oregon, by sale under process of any Court of competent jurisdic-tion, or by any other form of legal adjudica-tion whatsoever.
SEC. 6. That it shall be the duty of the Sec-retary of the Treasury to see that the said bonds be not indorsed and delivered as herein-before provided until it shall be made to ap-pear that there are no liens of any kind, by mortgage, trust deed, or otherwise, upon any section of completed road, excepting such as expressly recognize the priority of right in the United States to have the services performed as specified in this act; and the United States shall in no event be liable for any part of the principal of said bonds; and the performance by the corporation of the services stipulated in this act shall be deemed to be a full payment of all claims of the United States for reim-bursement of any sums paid as interest as aforesaid; and in case of refusal or failure to perform such services by the said corporation for the period of six months, the said corpor-ation, its successors, or assigns, shall forthwith become liable to repay to the United States all sums of money paid by them, after deducting a reasonable compensation for any services ac-tually performed; and the United States shall have power to bring actions or suits in the Cir-cuit Court of the United States for the District of Oregon against said corporation, its succes-sors, or assigns, to enforce such repayment by judgment or decree and execution thereon, with the right of appeal to the Supreme Court of the United States by either party; and the obligation to perform said services in the fu-ture shall, notwithstanding the said judgment, decree, and execution, remain in full force and effect against the said corporation, its succes-sors, and assigns.
SEC. 7. That if any officer, agent, or employee Of the said corporation its successors or assigns shall willfully refuse to transport the United States mails, Army or Indian supplies, troops or munitions of war, over its railroad, or trans-mit any dispatches over its telegraph line, after the United States shall be entitled to have such services performed as specified in this act, such officer, agent, or employee shall be deemed guilty of a misdemeanor, and, on con-viction thereof in any United States District Court having jurisdiction of the offense, be punished by a fine not exceeding five hundred dollars, or by imprisonment not exceeding six months.
SEC. 8. That the said company shall not unjustly discriminate in favor of or against any person or corporation in its charges for the transportation of persons or property over the said railroad, or dispatches over the said tele-graph line; nor in favor of or against any par-ticular town or place on the line of said rail-road; nor make any excessive charges or other undue use of the powers and privileges hereby granted to the said company.
SEC. 9. That the said company shall annu-ally report a condensed statement showing its net earnings, twenty-five per centum of which, after the payment of interest due by the said corporation upon its bonds, shall be immedi-ately invested in United States interest-bearing bonds and the same shall constitute a sink-ing fund with which to redeem at maturity the principal of its first-mortgage bonds.
SEC. 10. That the United States make the several conditional grants, herein, and the Portland, Dalles and Salt Lake Railroad Com-pany accept the same, upon the condition that if the said Company make any breach in the conditions hereof, and allow the same to con-tinue for one year, in such case the United States may at any time, by Congress, do any and all acts necessary to insure a speedy com-pletion of said railraad.
SEC. 11. That the acceptance of the terms and conditions of this act by the said company shall be signified in writing under its corporate seal, duly executed pursuant to a vote of its stockholders first had and obtained; which acceptance shall be made within ninety days after the approval of this act, and shall be filed with the Secretary of the Interior.
SEC. 12. That in order to effectually enforce the rights and privileges specified herein, Con-gress may at any time add to, alter, or amend this act.
Click tabs to swap between content that is broken into logical sections.