Long Sault Development Co. v. Call - 242 U.S. 272 (1916)


U.S. Supreme Court

Long Sault Development Co. v. Call, 242 U.S. 272 (1916)

Long Sault Development Company v. Call

No. 49

Argued April 14, 17, 1916

Restored to docket for reargument June 12, 1916

Reargued October 31, 1916

ğDecided December 11, 1916

242 U.S. 272

Syllabus

When a claim of contractual rights under a state statute is denied by a state court purely upon the ground that the attempted grant was in conflict with the state constitution and therefore void ab initio, the "contract clause" of the federal Constitution is not violated and this Court may not review the decision.

In determining whether such decision was influenced by legislation subsequent to the alleged contract, this Court will give considerate attention to the state court's decision, presuming an intention on the part of such court to obey the Constitution and laws of tho United States; it will not, however, confine itself to the language of the opinion, but will examine the decision in its scope and substance, and decide for itself whether subsequent legislation was given effect in arriving at the result.

The decision of the court below, holding void an act of the Legislature of New York (Laws of 1907, c. 355) which purported to grant rights in the Saint Lawrence River, was arrived at independently of the later repealing act and accompanying legislation found in Laws of 1913, chaps. 452 and 453.

Writ of error to review 212 N.Y. 1 dismissed.

The case is stated in the opinion.

Page 242 U. S. 273



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