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MY COUNTY OFFICIALS

Name of the official

Term of office, and

salary

Duties

How chosen?

Qualifications needed

Figure 39 Work Project: My County Officials

My county is

The county seat of my county is

My village has a population of about

The number of counties in my State is

Work projects:

1. If you are a qualified voter in your county, you have the right to help elect officials to local offices. Consider carefully the work which each of these officials must be qualified to do. Then try to make a list of the qualities you would hope to find in a candidate who was asking you to vote for him for any one of these offices. Fill out the lists below to show the qualities needed for the offices named.

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2. Study the public offices, including memberships on boards and commissions, in your county. When you have found out all you can about them, try to complete a chart of them like the one shown in Figure 39. After you

have completed this work, discuss it in your study group. What conclusions do you reach as to whether the work of your county government is well organized and well done?

Some more words which the student should understand:

acquittedfound not to be guilty.
appeals—requests that a higher authority will change a decision

or correct a mistake of a lower authority.
"assessed valuation"—the money value set on property to deter-

mine how much it shall be taxed.

a

bond—a written agreement to perform some duty honestly or,

upon failure, to make good by paying to the person damaged by

the failure a sum of money set aside for the purpose. circuits-districts to be traveled over. conclusions-final decisions. convictedfound guilty of a crime. coronen officer who inquires into deaths when there is reason to

suppose that they are not due to natural causes. creditors persons to whom sums of money are owed. deedswritten papers, prepared according to law, transferring

the ownership of real estate to someone else. estates-properties left by persons who died. headquarters—a principal place of business. incorporated-authorized by the legislature to have a local gov.

ernment. investigatingmaking careful inquiry about. justices of the peace-judges of local courts which are only author

ized to decide simple cases. lawlessness-total disregard and disrespect for the law. mortgages-legal papers providing for the future transfer of

property in case some promise, usually to pay back money which

is borrowed, is not kept. overseers-persons in charge. pettysmall or unimportant. police power_authority given to a law-enforcing agency to do

those things necessary to protect the health, safety, peace, and

general welfare of a community. posse—a group of persons in a county whom the sheriff has called

together to help arrest criminals or preserve the public peace. prosecuting attorney—a government law officer who argues in

court for the punishment of persons who have broken the law. road supervisors-officers who have charge of roads in a county

or district. sentenced ordered by a court to undergo punishment. superintendent of schools-chief officer having authority over the

schools in a district. taxable-property which should be taxed. title papers—papers showing ownership of land and buildings. trustees-persons who are trusted by others to represent them in

business matters. underpasses—passages underneath, as where a road is built under

a railroad bridge.

valuation-act of deciding the value or worth. willslegal papers in which persons declare what they wish done

with their property after their death.

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CHAPTER 17

The Objectives of Our State Governments

“The State and its services enter into the everyday life of the citizen and his family in a thousand and one ways."

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In the last chapter we studied the objectives of our local governments. You learned how they organize and operate to do their work. Now you are ready to study the objectives of our 48 State governments. Each one of them has come to serve many valuable purposes in the lives of the people who delegate to it its authority.

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THE STATE AND ITS CITIZENS

If

you look back to chapter 7 you will be reminded how the early Americans organized State governments and then, forming a union for common safety and for better cooperation, adopted a National Constitution and organized a National (usually called a Federal) Government. Town and township and city governments had been organized earliest of all, because they were all that were needed at first in a wild, new country. But let us not forget that, in the days of the Constitutional Convention at Philadelphia, the American people had far more loyalty to their own States than they ever expected or wanted to have to any central government. The States were first in importance or at least, so the people thought-and were the government units which most closely touched the lives of the people. All laws as to how the people should live and behave and get along together—all laws about personal conduct and the home, and about people's work problems and their property rights—were State laws. Even the Federal Constitution delegated to the National Government only a

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