Abbildungen der Seite

The amount which will be received into the treasury on account of this fund, may be stated as follows:

$102,812 50

21,280 28

Amount of the first four instalments due from the United States bank,

$879,375 00

Balance of the April instalment,
From which deduct the present de-

ficit of

From which deduct the amount which will be retained for interest, 319,400 00

From which deduct the above sum of

To this may be added the sum of $49,684 51 as available for the year, for two warrants issued to J. Q. Adams and Joel Clemens, the former payable January 1, 1843, for $32,500, the latter payable out of the assets received of the State bank, for $17,686 51,

$81,532 22

559,975 00

$641,507 22 541,093 25

$100,403 97

49,686 51

Leaving a surplus of

$150,100 48

Should it be necessary to transfer from this fund, the sum estimated for the general fund, there will be but a small surplus in the treasury at the end of the year. If, however, some portion of the unexpended appropriations should be brought again into the treasury, means to that amount would be had to prosecute those branches of the public works which it is desirable to finish.

I have prepared a table, No. 6, exhibiting the aggregate amount of the remaining instalments of the five million loan, to which I have added all the amounts due to the fund upon the books of the office.

The receipts for tolls upon the Central railroad during the year, amount to

Of which there has been paid for expenses,

$59,140 14 40,973 67

Leaving a surplus of

$18,166 47

The sum of $16,486 47 has been paid into the treasury to the credit of the sinking fund, and transferred to the internal improvement fund; the sum of $348 48, remains due from Thomas Clarke, collector, and the residue is in the hands of the commissioner.

The sum of twenty thousand dollars, directed to be transferred from the internal improvement fund to the credit of the

state prison fund, has been paid to the commissioner of the building department. His accounts have been rendered and audited to the 14th instant, for the sum of fifteen thousand dollars, since which time he has received the remainder, to be accounted for hereafter. His report, with that of the agent of the prison, will be found hereto appended.

The amount in the treasury, to the credit of the university and primary school fund, at the commencement of the year,


$4,756 40
27,210 23

The receipts of the year amount to

$31,966 63
28,650 99

And the payments, to

Leaving a balance now in the treasury, of $3,315 64 I regret my inability, without the aid of the superintendent of public instruction, to designate the particular funds to which this sum should be applied. With the view of having the funds correctly entered upon the books of this office, the house of representatives passed a resolution at its last session, authorizing the auditor general and state treasurer to examine the books and papers of the superintendent, a copy of which was transmitted to him, with a request that he would designate a time when it would be convenient to him to attend the examination. To this no reply was received, (in consequence of his illness, as I have since learned,) until the absence of the treasurer prevented any further action in the matter.

The balance in the treasury, to the credit of the delinquent tax fund, at the date of the last report, was

$16,894 85

The receipts for the year amount, as per abstract E, to

90,904 15

$107,799 00
56,629 83

The payments, as per abstract F, to

Leaving in the treasury,

$51,169 17

In addition to the above receipts, the sum of $1,131 80, has been received and passed to the credit of the several counties, being one-half of the office charges as established by the law of last session. The balances due to and from the several counties, were ascertained; and the sum in the treasury, on the first of July last, distributed. For the remainder, bonds have been issued to the amount of $120,400, as set forth in abstract No. 7 of the appendix. Circulars have been addressed to each of the county treasurers, proffering to pay, on presentation, the first and second series, some portion of which has already been paid. Funds sufficient to pay the remaining bonds, will doubtless be collected during the year, and it will be my duty

[ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors]

to anticipate the payment of them whenever the means are in the treasury, if the present law is not modified or repealed. I respectfully submit to the legislature the propriety of authorizing some portion of the future receipts to be applied to the relief of the general fund.

An abstract of the remaining funds, No. 8, will be found in the appendix, to which I refer, with the remark, that provision should be made for the balance standing against the bank fund, as there is no probability that the receipts of the year will be sufficient to liquidate this amount.

The returns of delinquent taxes for the year 1838, are

For 1839,

$291,044 15

Of this amount, nearly one-third part has been collected; a large portion of which was received in the months of June, July and August. For the transaction of this business, it became necessary to apply the entire labors of the clerks allowed the department by law, and frequently to employ one, and sometimes two, more, leaving all the other branches of the business to be discharged by myself. I deem it due to the persons employed, to say, that they have consented to labor at unseasonable hours, and sometimes at the sacrifice of health. I cannot too strongly recommend that authority be lodged somewhere, to employ a competent number of clerks to transact the business of the office, which, in consequence of the returns of taxes for collection, is annually increasing.

The state having assumed the payment to the counties, of all the delinquent taxes heretofore returned to this office, the uncollected balance constitutes the only means which have been provided for the extinguishment of the public debt which was not designed specially for internal improvements.

This debt may be stated as follows:

Bonds issued May, 1836, payable May, 1856,
do July, 1839, do July, 1859,
July, 1840,
$120,400 00


Deduct amount on hand, say,

51,000 00

Penitentiary bonds, April 1, 1838, payable January, 1839,


do February 1, 1839, do Janua

ry, 1840,

$99,961 51 191,082 64

[blocks in formation]

$100,000 00 31,000 00

69,400 00

20,000 00

40,000 00

$240,000 00

Brought forward,

To which add the amount of transfers from the internal improvement fund,

Deduct taxes uncollected,

280,000 00

$540,000 00
192,000 00

$348,000 00

Which leaves a balance of three hundred and forty-eight thousand dollars, for which no provision has been made. Under our present system, the expenditures far exceed the amount of receipts, so that this debt is annually increasing. The amount assessed for the year 1838, was $85,906 97, while the expenditures were $168,485 09. The amount for 1839, was $92,385 43, and the expenditures $160,368 92, leaving also a large amount due for outstanding claims. The assessments for the present year, have fallen to $75,666 04, in consequence of the diminished valuation, while the estimate amounts to $91,624 92. I do not now stop to inquire, how much of this excess has been paid by receipts from other sources, as it is sufficient to show that during the first four years of our state government, a debt of nearly $400,000 has been created beyond the means provided for its redemption. No argument is required to prove that without a radical change in our financial system, this evil must increase.

In attempting to discharge that part of my duty, which requires the auditor general "to report such changes in the financial system of this state, as in his opinion may be expedient, and may tend to a more economical course of disbursements,' I am admonished by the complaints continually made of the amount of taxes already assessed, not to recommend an increase of that which is considered oppressive.

[ocr errors]

My attention has first been directed to the inquiry, whether any portion of the disbursements from the treasury can be dispensed with; but with the exception of the trifling amount paid for the inspection of brigades, which might well be paid from military fines, and so much as would be saved by a reduction of the sum paid for bounty on wolves, I see nothing which can materially lessen the demands upon the treasury.

The only alternative then, in my judgment, is to replenish the treasury by adding to the amount assessed for the state, so as to secure a sum sufficient to meet the demands upon it, and to reduce the amount levied for other purposes.

I have prepared a table (No. 9,) from the returns of delinquent taxes for the year 1839, from which it appears that the amount assessed for the state, varies from 40 cents to 59 cents upon each eighty acre lot, while that for the counties, varies from 65 cents to $2 52; and the road taxes, from $1 20 to $5 60.

[ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors]

If the largest amount which has been assessed upon any one lot, be taken as the average upon the entire valuation of the property of the state, the result would show an aggregate of nearly two and a half millions of dollars; and if to this be added the highest amount of school tax, ($12 26,) the sum would be increased to more than four millions eight hundred thousand dollars.

I am aware that, by the operation of the laws of last session, the assessments for the present year will be much reduced; but, by the provisions of those laws, a road tax can be assessed equal to three-fourths per cent upon the valuation. This sum alone, upon the fifty thousand lots returned for 1839, and which chiefly belong to non-residents, if valued at the present rates, will produce about ninety thousand dollars. It must be obvious, therefore, that the laws allowing so high an assessment for road taxes, might be so modified as to secure the desired result.

My attention has frequently been directed to several provisions of the statutes, during the past year, providing for the assessment and collection of taxes, which have been variously construed; and, from the difficulties which have arisen in consequence of these conflicting opinions, I am induced to recommend a revision of the whole system. The laws which had been in operation several years, were repealed by the revised statutes, with certain exceptions, which have been frequently misapprehended. The "act to provide for the assessment and collection of taxes for the year 1838, approved April 19, 1839, revives the former laws, so far as they relate to the collection of taxes for the years 1836 and 1837, by the county treasurers, without making any provision for the sale of those lands, which, under certain regulations, were authorized to be returned to this office.

The returns of taxes for 1836 and 1837, have been made by one county only. These remain unsold, while those for the same years have already been sold in the other counties. It is doubted whether a sale can be made under the provisions of the revised statutes, without further legislation. Section fourteen of the same law, has been construed to a considerable extent, to repeal the provisions of the revised statutes, levying a state specific tax upon merchants and others, and allowing one to be collected for the use of the counties. Several counties have refused either to make returns to this office, or to pay over the amount when collected, to the treasurer. Efforts have been made to induce a compliance with the terms of the law, and in most instances they have been successful. There are, however, one or two counties which have not complied with the requisition.

Many of the county treasurers have retained five per cent

« ZurückWeiter »