Local Government (Ireland) Act, 1871

Duties of auditor; and appeal against decision of auditor.

12. Every auditor acting in pursuance of this Act shall examine into the matter of every account which is to be audited by him, and shall disallow and strike out of every such account all payments, charges, and allowances made by any person and charged upon the funds of any town contrary to law, or which he deems to be unfounded, and shall surcharge the same upon the person making or authorizing the making of the illegal payment, and shall certify the same to be due from such person, and upon application by any party aggrieved shall state in writing at the foot of such account the reasons for his decision in respect of such disallowance or surcharge, and also of any allowance which he may have made; and it shall be lawful for every person aggrieved by any such allowance and for every person aggrieved by such disallowance or surcharge, if such last-mentioned person have first paid or delivered over to any person authorized to receive the same all such money, goods, and chattels as are admitted by his account to be due from him or remaining in his hands, to apply to the Court of Queen’s Bench for a writ of certiorari to remove into the said court the said allowance, disallowance, or surcharge, in the like manner and subject to the like conditions as are provided in respect of persons suing forth writs of certiorari for the removal of orders of justices of the peace, except that the condition of the recognizance shall be, to prosecute such certiorari, at the costs and charges of such person, without any wilful or affected delay, and if such allowance, disallowance, or surcharge be confirmed, to pay to such auditor or his successor, within one month after the same may be confirmed, his full costs and charges, to be taxed according to the course of the said court, and except that the notice of the intended application, which shall contain a statement of the matter complained of, shall be given to such auditor or his successor, who shall in return to such writ return a copy under his hand of the entry or entries in such book of account to which such notice shall refer, and shall appear before the said court, and defend the allowance, disallowance, or surcharge so impeached in the said court, and shall be reimbursed all such costs and charges as he may incur in such defence out of the rates which the governing body of the town interested in the decision of the question have power to make, unless the said court make any order to the contrary; and that on the removal of such allowance, disallowance, or surcharge, the said court shall decide the particular matter of complaint set forth in such statement, and no other; and if it appear to such court that the decision of the said auditor was erroneous, they shall, by rule of the court, order such sum of money as may have been improperly allowed, disallowed, or surcharged to be paid to the party entitled thereto by the party who ought to repay or discharge the same; and they may also, if they see fit, by order of the court, direct the costs of the person prosecuting such certiorari to be paid out of rates which the governing body have power to make, as to such court may seem fit; which orders of court respectively shall be enforced in like manner as other orders of the said court are enforceable.

Provided always, that it shall be lawful for any person aggrieved as aforesaid by any allowance, disallowance, or surcharge, in lieu of making application to the Court of Queen’s Bench for a writ of certiorari, to apply to the Chief Secretary to inquire into and to decide upon the lawfulness of the reasons stated by the auditor for such allowance, disallowance, or surcharge, and it shall thereupon be lawful for the Chief Secretary to issue such order therein, under his hand, as he may deem requisite for determining the question.