At their annual meeting, the voters of a Vermont city approved the issuance of municipal bonds to finance erection of a sewage disposal plant. Before further action was taken, a group of citizens, acting in accordance with a charter provision, presented the mayor with a petition containing one hundred signatures which demanded that a special meeting he called to vote on a proposal to rescind the approval previously given. The voters refused to rescind. Twice thereafter petitions were filed with the mayor asking that special meetings be called to reconsider the question, but on each of these occasions the petitions failed for want of a sufficient number of signatures. Finally, a fourth petition containing the requisite number of signatures was filed demanding a special meeting. In the meantime, the city council by resolution authorized the bond issue, although no bonds were actually executed or sold. When the mayor refused to call another special meeting plaintiff taxpayer sued to enjoin the city and mayor from issuing bonds until a special meeting should have been called. Defendants' demurrer to the bill was overruled by the county court, and on appeal to the Supreme Court of Vermont, held, affirmed. In the absence of restrictive legislation and until rights have "vested" in third parties, a statutory power conferred on a minority of voters to obtain a referendum may be used to force successive elections on a proposal to rescind prior approval, notwithstanding that the effect thereof may be to thwart indefinitely action by the majority. Denicore v. City of Burlington, (VT 1950) 70 A. (2d) 582.
Robert P. Griffin S.Ed.,
MUNICIPAL CORPORATIONS - RESCISSION BY ELECTORATE OF APPROVAL TO ISSUE BONDs - USE OF REFERENDUM POWER To PREVENT ACTION BY THE MAJORITY,
Mich. L. Rev.
Available at: https://repository.law.umich.edu/mlr/vol49/iss2/17