Executive Order 2777

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Whereas Section Two of the Act of Congress approved March 3, 1917, entitled "An Act to Provide for a Temporary Government of the Virgin Islands of the United States", provides as follows:

That until Congress shall otherwise provide, in so far as compatible with the changed sovereignty and not in conflict with the provisions of this Act, the laws regulating elections and the electoral franchise as set forth in the code of laws published at Amalienborg the sixth of April, nineteen hundred and six, and the other local laws, in force and effect in said islands on the seventeenth day of January, nineteen hundred and seventeen, shall remain in force and effect in said islands, and the same shall be administered by the civil officials and through the local judicial tribunals established in said islands, respectively; and the orders, judgments, and decrees of said judicial tribunals shall be duly enforced. With the approval of the President, or under such rules and regulations as the President may prescribe, any of said laws may be repealed, altered, or amended by the colonial council having jurisdiction. The jurisdiction of the judicial tribunals of said islands shall extend to all judicial proceedings and controversies in said islands to which the United States or any citizen thereof may be a party. In all cases arising in the said West Indian Islands and now reviewable by the courts of Denmark, writs of error and appeals shall be to the Circuit Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit, and, except as provided in sections two hundred and thirty-nine and two hundred and forty of the Judicial Code the judgments, orders, and decrees of such court shall be final in all such cases;

And whereas Section Five of the said act of Congress provides as follows:

That the duties and taxes collected in pursuance of this Act shall not be covered into the general fund of the Treasury of the United States, but shall be used and expended for the government and benefit of said islands under such rules and regulations as the President may prescribe;

Now, Therefore, in virtue of the authority vested in me by the said Sections Two and Five of the said Act of Congress, [I] do hereby prescribe the following rules:

"Repeals, Alterations and Amendments of local laws of Virgin Islands of United States by Colonial Council having jurisdiction, shall be effective and enforced when, and to the extent, said Repeals, Alterations and Amendments are approved by the Governor of said islands, the Governor to state specifically in each case whether his approval is in whole or in part, and if in part only, what part is approved and what part not approved. The President reserves the right to disapprove and set aside any enactments of the Colonial Council"; "The duties, less the cost of collection, and the taxes collected in the Virgin Islands of the United States, shall be expended for the government and benefit of said islands in accordance with the annual budget prepared and modified by the local laws; Provided, That during this current fiscal year of said islands, in order to provide for the payments of those expenses of said islands formerly paid by Denmark and not provided for in said budgets, and to provide further for other necessary and unforeseen expenses of government, the Governor may authorize such additional expenditures from said funds as, in his discretion, may be necessary for the government and benefit of said islands during this current local fiscal year."

Signature of Woodrow Wilson
Woodrow Wilson 

The White House,

26 December, 1917.


This work is in the public domain in the United States because it is a work of the United States federal government (see 17 U.S.C. 105).