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taxes—say not less than fifteen per cent., ($294,693,) leaving $1,669,927 as the largest amount that can be relied upon. On the one and one-half per cent. assessment ten per cent. would probably cover the delinquency of taxes. All this, of course, is an approximation. The difference between the amount received from taxes, from licenses, (estimated at about $175,000,) and from water-rents, (estimated at about $65,000,) which constitute substantially all the revenue of the District, will have to be provided for by congressional appropriation; the amount of the appropriation depending upon the rate of tax and the basis of valuation.

The leading features of the proposed bill, so far as they ditfer from the present tax-system of the District, are

First, a uniform rate of tax over all the District;
Secondly, the payment of taxes in semi-annual installments;

Thirdly, the abolition of abatements for advanced payments, and the increase of penalty for non-payment; and

Fourthly, for the collection and the more immediate enforcement of the payment of taxes in arrears.

The present system of collection is very faulty, and renders it almost impossible to make any reliable calculations of receipts from taxes. The commissioners are not a little embarrassed on this account; the amount of taxes received since the 1st of December, ultimo, being considerably less than the amount estimated by the collector and stated in his report, which was the basis on which we made our estimate of receipts.

We will thank you to hand this note, or a copy of the same, to the committee to which the bill shall be referred, for the purpose of explanation,

You will observe that the last section of the bill requires that before making any contract for special improvements, the plan for such improvements must first be submitted to the Chief Engineer of the Army, and his approval be obtained to the plan itself, and also to its expediency and necessity. Furthermore, no contract, even for necessary work, can be made in excess of the means previously provided by congressional enactment, together with the contributions toward the cost of such necessary work legally chargeable against the property of indi. viduals. Very respectfully,



Commissioners District of Columbia. Hon. N. P. CHIPMAN,

Delegate District of Columbia.


Washington, January 15, 1875. Aggregate of estimates for fiscal year ending June 30, 1876, based upon reports of heads of

bureaus. Interest on $8,883,940.43....

$617,554 Special improvements..........

400,000 Gas for streets and public buildings.

144,000 Metropolitan police.......

136, 423 School-teachers, payment of....

265, 000 Expenses of public schools......

118, 000 General fund of the District, including estimates engineer......

1,074,823 Total ..

2, 755, 800

Estimate showing amount of revenue derived from a tax of $1.50 per hundred on a valuation of

$98,231,000. For interest...............................

................................... $0 348 $337, 669 For gas-fund .................

78,584 For Metropolitan police..

74, 901 For school teachers.....

147, 346 For contingent expenses schools

676 64, 463 For special improvements ..

221 218, 568 For general District fund.......

566 551, 934


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Estimate showing amount of rerenue derired from a tax of $1.50 per hundred on a valuation of

$90,000,000, with a proportionate distribution to various funds. For interest...

resu.................................................... $0 342 $309. 375 For gas-fand .......


72, 000 For police-fund ........

68, 625 For school-teachers ............................................. ............................................ 15

135. 000 For contingent expenses schools

59,062 For special improvements..

200, 250 For general District fund .......

567 505, 687

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Estimate showing amount of revenue derived from a tax of $2 per hundred on a valuation

of $98,231,000. For interest.

$0 455 $450, 206 For gas-fund .......

103 104, 798 For Metropolitan police......

10% 99,868 For school-teachers

20 196, 462 For contingent expenses public schools

85,952 For special improvements.

293 291, 420 For general District fund......

7411 735, 914 Total.

2 00 1,964, 620

Estimate showing amount of revenue derived from a tax of $2 per hundred on a valuation

of $90,000,000. For interest, not including that on 3.65 bonds..

$0 454 $412, 500 For gas-fund .....

103 96,000 For Xetropolitan police .....

103 91,500 For school teachers' fund......

20 180,000 For contingent expenses public schools

84 78,750 For special improvements..

29 267,000 For general District fund..

7412 674, 250

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2d Session.

I No. 41.






Report as to the organization of the cotton division" in his Department, and

by what authority of law the same was done, &c.

JANTARY 19, 1375.-Referred to the Committee on Appropriations and ordered to be


Whereas, under the act of Congress approved March 12, 1863, entitled "An act to provide for the collection of abandoned property, and for the prerention of frauds in the insurrectionary districts within the United States," the proceeds of a large amount of captured and abandoned property were covered into the Treasury of the United States, a large proportion of which was unlawfully seized by the agents of the Treasury Department after the 30th day of June, 1865, the total amount received from these sources being over twenty millions of dollars, and that which was seized after the 30th day of June, 1865, was, by the fifth section of the act of May, 1872, directed to be paid by the Secretary of the Treasury to the lawful owners thereof; and whereas it appears by the report of the Secretary of the Treasury made to the present session of Congress that since the passage of said last-mentioned act there has been paid to claimants under said act but the small sum of $133,018.27; and whereas it further appears that under various acts and resolutions of Congress the amount of $260,000 has been appropriated to defend

cotton suits" against the United States, and it does not appear how or in what manner this sum of $260,000 has been used; and whereas it appears that a division called and termed the "cotton division" has been organized in the Treasury Department, with chiefs, clerks, and employés at high salaries, amounting to over $12,000 per annum ; and whereas the management and distribution of said fund, from its large amount and other considerations, requires that it should be under the supervision of men of unquestioned character and intelligence: Therefore,

Be it resolved, That the Secretary of the Treasury be, and he is hereby, directed to inform this House

First. By what authority of law said division of the Treasury Depart

ment known as the " cotton division” was formed, and clerks and their pay assigned, and what amount of salaries is paid ou this account per annum.

Second. By what authority of law J. S. Frazer is employed to adjudi. cate cotton-claims at an annual salary of ten thousand dollars, and also what time the said Frazer has been so employed, and under what appropriation he receives his compensation.

Third. To whom, and for what services, and when and where rendered, has the appropriation of $260,000, or any part thereof, been paid.

Fourth. Whether the chief clerk of said cotton division is not M. L. Noerr, who, previous to his appointment in said division, was in the employment of the detective Pinkerton, and whether the second clerk in position in said division is not William Fessenden, and the same individual who held a position in the Army of the United States as paymaster, and was dismissed therefrom for embezzlement of a large sum of money; and do not these parties have charge of all records of the United States pertaining to cotton-claims!

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