CE, 4 août 1905, p. 749 Case Martin
04 August 1905
Translated by:
Professor Bernard Rudden
Professor B. S. Markesinis

Conseil d’Etat

Having seen the application submitted by Mr. Georges Martin, regional councillor of Loir-et-Cher, acting both as regional councillor and as taxpayer, the said application asking that it please the Council to annul for lack of powers the resolutions adopted by the regional council of Loir-et-Cher in 1900, 1901, 1902 and 1903 on tramways to be built and concessions to be granted from Blois to Châtellerault, from Vendôme to Montdoubleau and Ville-aux-Clers, and from Romorantin to Neung-sur-Beuvron;

And to do so seeing that, contrary to the provisions of article 56 of the Act of 10 August 1871, none of these resolutions was preceded by the communication of a report stamped by the Prefect, but were adopted on the basis of an informal report of the special commission, which the members of Council, not being party to the commission, were in no position to discuss;

Having seen the observations submitted by the Minister of Public Works in response to the transmittal to him of the application, the said observations arguing for rejection of the petition as not receivable and in any case ill-founded for the following reasons: (1) that as regards the resolutions earlier than that of 19 August 1903 the motion is out of time; (2) that, as regards the resolution of 19 August 1903, two later Decrees issued after taking the opinion of the Conseil d’Etat declared the lines concerned to be of public utility, thereby rendering the resolution effective in favour of the concession-holding company; that hence Mr. Martin can no longer plead the regional council’s lack of powers in order to uphold his alleged rights; (3) finally that the provisions of article 56 of the Act of 10 August 1871 are not, in matters such as this, mandatory on pain of nullity;

Having seen the Decrees of 5 September and 17 November 1903; the Acts of 24 May 1872, 13 April 1900, 10 August 1871;

As regards the resolutions of August 1900, April and August 1901-1902; Considering that it was only on 9 September 1903, that is after the period of two months laid down by the Act of 13 April 1900, that Mr. Martin, regional councillor, applied for the annulment of the resolutions in which he had taken part; that therefore his application may not, as regards these resolutions, be accepted;

As regards the resolution of 19 August 1903; Considering that to obtain annulment of this resolution Mr. Martin argues that it was adopted although the regional council had received no communication of a special report by the Prefect in the form and within the periods laid down by article 56 of the Act of 10 August1871;

But considering that even if, under the provisions of the above-cited article, the Prefect is to provide, at least eight days before the august session, a special and detailed report on the situation in the Department and the state of the different services, and, at the other ordinary session, a report on matters submitted to him during that session, these provisions do not prevent the Prefect from furnishing the regional council, even during its sessions, with reports either complementary to those already submitted, or even on entirely new matters investigation of which could not be undertaken or completed before the opening of the sessions; that it follows that, taking as established the fact relied on by Mr. Martin, the resolution of 19 August 1903 was not adopted in violation of the law (Reject).

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