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The department of public works has been more especially active in the provinces of Pinar del Rio, Habana, Matanzas, Santa Clara, and Puerto Principe, principally in road construction and surveying, etc.. for harbor improvements.

The regulations for the government of public works were published in Orders Nos. 220, May 28, and 249, June 26, 1900.


PARAGRAPH 1. The department of public works shall consist of a secretary, a director-general, and such number of district engineers and of other employees as the nature and extent of the works in hand may require and as may be authorized from time to time by higher authority.

PAR. 2. The secretary of public works shall have his headquarters at the seat of government and shall be charged, under the direction of the governor of the island, with the control of the department of public works and with the regulation of the duties of all persons who may be employed by the department. By virtue of this authority he directs the affairs of the department and gives such orders to all individuals connected therewith as the necessities of the service demand.

PAR. 3. He shall supervise all disbursements made by officials of the department, and his approval of their accounts, so far as relates to the necessity or expediency of the expenditure and the prices paid, and his certificate that the mode of expenditure adopted, under the laws and regulations from higher authority, was the most economical and advantageous to the government shall be final. If the disbursing official certifies that the mode of expenditure adopted was the most economical and advantageous to the government, the certificate of the secretary of public works to that effect may be omitted and will be covered by the approval of the secretary of public works indorsed on the account current.

PAR. 4. Public funds for the use of the department of public works shall be obtained from the treasurer of the island on requisitions from the secretary of public works approved by the governor. Such requisitions shall state the amount desired, the appropriation from which it comes, the depository or depositories in which the money shall be placed, and the name of each official to whose credit it is to be deposited.

PAR. 5. The secretary of public works will see that the funds in the hands of a disbursing officer are limited to his requirements for a brief period and that as much as practicable of public moneys placed to his credit is kept with the treasurer of the island or with a designated depository of public funds.

PAR. 6. The secretary of public works will cause each account current, with its accompanying papers, to be examined and transmitted to the auditor for the island, with his decision indorsed thereon, within ten days from the date on which such account was received at his office. He will bring to the notice of the governor of the island all matters of account that require or merit it. When a suspension or disallowance is made, the secretary will notify the official held responsible, that he may have an opportunity to submit explanations or take an appeal to the governor.

PAR. 7. As soon as possible after the receipt of a property return by the secretary of public works it will be examined in his office, and the official making the return will be notified of all errors and irregularities found therein and granted three months to correct them. Suspensions or disallowances will not be made on account of slight informalities which do not affect the validity of a voucher, but the official's attention may be called to them. Whenever the errors have been corrected or compensation has been made for deficient articles the return will be regarded as settled, and the official who rendered it will be notified accordingly.

PAR. 8. If the necessary corrections in the return be not made within the prescribed time, the facts will be reported to the governor. When it has been determined that the money value of the property for which an officer has failed to account shall be refunded to the government, the facts will be certified to the auditor for the island by the secretary of public works.

PAR. 9. The secretary of public works shall present to the governor of the island, on or before the 1st day of September in each year, a report of the operations of the department for the year ending on the 30th day of June preceding, with such suggestions relative to its affairs as he may deem expedient, accompanied by an estimate of funds required for the service of the department for the ensuing year.

PAR. 10. The secretary of public works shall, from time to time, personally inspect

the public works under the charge of his department, under the authority of the governor of the island.

PAR. 11. The secretary of public works shall determine the extent of office room and furniture therefor required for employees of his department when the expenditure is to be made from appropriation controlled by the department.

PAR. 12. The director-general of public works shall be the principal assistant of the secretary of public works. He shall act as secretary of public works in the event of death or disability of the secretary or of his absence from the seat of government, provided, however, that in the event of the disability of the secretary or his absence from the seat of government written authority must be given by the governor of the island to enable the director-general to act as secretary. The director-general of public works shall be ex officio chief inspector of railways and shall perform such other duties as may be assigned him from time to time by the secretary.

PAR. 13. There shall be attached to the headquarters of the secretary of public works, as many officials as the service of his department may require, and through whom the secretary may issue orders and instructions.

PAR. 14. There shall be such a number of district engineers as the service of the department may demand and as authorized by the governor of the island. Each district engineer shall have his office in a convenient locality within the limits of the district assigned to him. District engineers shall be charged with the preparation and execution of projects for work in their respective districts. They will be held responsible for all public property pertaining to the department and in their charge and for the proper expenditure of all public funds for works in their charge as regards the objects of the expenditure, the prices paid, and the method of expenditure adopted under the regulations from higher authority, and will render such accounts and returns as may be required. Each district engineer will file with the treasurer of the island a suitable bond, in an amount to be fixed by the governor of the island, on the recommendation of the secretary of public works and of the secretary of finance.

PAR. 15. There will be attached to the office of the secretary of public works and to the office of each district engineer one chief clerk, who, in addition to the other duties assigned to him by his superiors, shall be the disbursing officer for that office. He shall be held responsible for the care of all public funds committed to his charge and for their disbursement, under the orders of his immediate superior, in accordance with the adopted rules and regulations, in so far as regards the amounts paid and the identity of the payee. He shall file a suitable bond with the treasurer of the island, in an amount to be fixed by the governor of the island, on the recommendation of the secretary of public works and the secretary of finance.

PAR. 16. All projects for commencing new works must be submitted to the governor of the island, through the secretary of public works, for consideration.

PAR. 17. When plans of any kind for public work under the department of public works have been approved by the governor of the island or by the secretary of public works, they must not be departed from in any particular without the express permission of the approving official.

PAR. 18. Public works in charge of the department of public works shall be inspected at least once a year and, when completed, by such officials of the department as the secretary of public works, with the approval of the governor, shall designate.

PAR. 19. In any work carried on under the direction of the secretary of public works his authority must be obtained for the erection of temporary wharves and buildings required in the progress of the work; for the purchase of surveying instruments, professional books, maps and charts; of medicines; of means of transportation of surveying parties; for the rent of office room and purchase of furniture for same, and for the purchase or hire of any vessel or boat; and the application for the authority must state the probable cost to be entailed. Extensive repairs upon any wharf, building, vessel, or boat must first be authorized by the secretary of public works. His authority must also be obtained for the employment and rate of compensation of assistant engineers, scientists, physicians, inspectors, draftsmen, clerks, copyists, overseers, steamboat captains, mates, and pilots. When, from the emergency of the work, antecedent authority has not been obtained, approval after the fact may be given by the secretary of public works at his discretion. In such cases the official making the purchase or procuring the service, in reporting the same to the secretary of public works, shall certify that the emergency of the work was such that the antecedent authority of the secretary of public works could not be obtained.

PAR. 20. The repairs of instruments may be made under the direction of the district engineer responsible for them, when the exigencies of the service in his opinion, require it and the cost thereof charged to the work on which they are in use.

PAR. 21. Journeys to be performed by officials of the department on duty connected with public works may be ordered by the secretary of public works, or

approved by him when the emergency requiring the journey does not permit of obtaining an order previous to making the journey. In the latter case the official should certify upon the traveling voucher "that urgent public duty required the journey to be performed without previous orders," and the voucher must be accompanied by the approval of the journey by the secretary of public works or of the district engineer responsible, if performed by a subordinate of a district engineer.

District engineers are authorized to order journeys made by their subordinates within their respective districts.

PAR. 22. Officials of the department of public works, traveling under orders on duty connected with the public works, will be paid travel expenses from the appropriations for the work for which the journey is required.

PAR. 23. The following books and files for each work will be required to be kept by the official in charge:

1. A cash book, with daily record of receipts and expenditures.

2. An appropriation or allotment book.

3. A roll file, showing the name, occupation, time employed, and amount paid to each hired person each month.

4. A file containing a journal of operations, showing a daily record of the occupation of the persons employed on the work, the application of their labor, and miscellaneous facts connected with the work; with contract work a record of the quantity of work done by the contractor daily, if possible, or at such times as the work can be measured, stating daily the number and occupation of men employed and number and kind of machines used by contractor.

5. A file of letters sent.

6. A file of letters received.

7. A file of orders received.

8. A press copy book of all vouchers paid.

9. A property file.

10. An index will be kept with each book and file.

PAR. 24. The following reports and returns for works of the department shall be sent to the secretary of public works by the engineer in charge, within ten days after the expiration of the month or quarter to which they relate, viz:

Monthly report of operations.

Monthly return of employees.

Monthly account current.

Monthly abstract of disbursements (in duplicate with proper vouchers).
Monthly abstract of funds received.

Monthly abstract of funds transferred.

Monthly abstract of property purchased.

The following returns will be rendered on the first day of the month following that to which they relate:

Monthly money statement.

Monthly personal report.

The following eturn shall be rendered within twenty days after the quarter to which it relates:

Quarterly return of public property.

Property returns must be rendered for the quarter ending June 30 and December 31 of each year. After a complete return has been furnished, if there have been but few changes during a subsequent quarter, it will be sufficient to state these changes for the quarter ending March 31 and September 30.

PAR. 25. A report shall also be sent in time to reach the secretary by the 1st of August of each year of the operations on each work or survey during the fiscal year ending June 30 preceding, with the necessary drawings, and showing the condition of the work, the extent and cost of the principal operations (as brickwork, stonework, earthwork, surveys), accompanied by a summary statement of expenditures during the year, with a detailed estimate of the funds required for the next year and an estimate of the amount required to complete the work.

The report should conclude with a recapitulation, giving a brief of its more important facts and interesting particulars; this should be of such a form that it may be embodied in the annual report of the secretary of public works.

PAR. 26. An official of the department or agent who is in charge of any work of construction or survey, or any operation involving the expenditure of money, shall supervise the disbursement of the money for the same, and, when informed of the fund applicable thereto, will furnish the secretary of public works a project for the manner in which it is proposed to apply it, with an estimate of the probable monthly expenditures.



PAR. 27. The use of moneys for purposes other than those for which appropriated, liquidation of liabilities of one fiscal year by use of moneys appropriated for another, and expenditures in a fiscal year of any sum in excess of appropriations for that year, or involving the government in any contract for future payment of money in excess of appropriations, except as authorized specifically by the governor of the island, are prohibited.

PAR. 28. Lists of depositories designated for the use of disbursing officers will be published from time to time in orders.

PAR. 29. When an officer disburses money in different capacities, his deposits and accounts will be kept distinct, according to the department to which they pertain.

PAR. 30. Public moneys subject to disbursement coming into the hands of an official from any source must be promptly placed by him to his credit with an authorized lepository, or transferred to a disbursing officer of that branch of the public service to which the money pertains, in either of which cases a receipt will be obtained. Exceptions to this rule are allowed where a disbursing officer has been specially authorized by the governor to keep in his personal possession, at his own risk, the public moneys which have been intrusted to him for disbursement, and money in hand may be disbursed at once without being placed in depositories if payments are due.

PAR. 31. A disbursing officer, ceasing to act as such and having public funds to his credit in any office or bank, will at once inform the treasurer of the island, stating what checks drawn against the same are still outstanding and unpaid.

PAR. 32. All amounts of money held at the end of each fiscal year by the treasurer, an assistant treasurer, or a designated depository credited to a disbursing officer whose account has remained unchanged, either by deposit or payment, for the space of one year, shall be covered into the treasury to be placed to the credit of such officer, if it is found that he is entitled to the credit.


PAR. 33. No official disbursing public money or directing the disbursement thereof shall be concerned individually, directly or indirectly, in the purchase or sale of any article intended for, used by, or pertaining to the department of the public service in which he is engaged.

PAR. 34. Officials or agents in the government service will not purchase supplies for the government from any other persons in the service, nor contract with any such person to furnish supplies or services to the government, nor make any government purchase or contract in which such person shall be admitted to share or receive benefit. PAR. 35. If any disbursing officer shall bet at cards, or any game of hazard, he shall be dismissed.

PAR. 36. All funds drawn from the treasury will be placed by the treasurer with the designated depositories to the credit of the person named in the warrant. For each deposit the depository will issue a receipt setting forth its serial number, the place and date of issue, the name of the depositor, amount, and name of the party receiving the credit. The depository will send one copy of this receipt direct to the treasurer and another copy to the party receiving the credit.

PAR. 37. When the treasurer deposits funds to the credit of a disbursing officer he will notify the disbursing officer, stating to what fund and allotment the money belongs.


PAR. 38. Public funds will in general be transferred as follows: The official making the transfer will draw his check directing the bank to place the said amount to the official credit of the party named therein. This check will be sent to the bank, unless the funds are required for immediate use, in which case the transferring official may draw the check and transmit it direct to the party receiving them. All transfers of funds will be covered by invoices and receipts in duplicate, the invoices stating the allotment or appropriation to which the funds belong. Depositing money to the credit of the treasurer is not a transfer of funds; the treasurer's receipt in this case becomes a voucher.

PAR. 39. For every deposit made by one disbursing officer to the official credit of another a receipt will be given by the bank, setting forth its serial number, the place and date of issue, the amount, name of the depositor, and of the party receiving credit.

In all cases one copy of this receipt will be sent direct to the party receiving the credit and one copy to the depositor.

PAR. 40. Funds will not be transferred from one appropriation for the use of another by borrowing or otherwise.


PAR. 41. A disbursing officer may draw his official check in favor of himself "or bearer" for making payments not exceeding $20, to make payments remote from the bank, or to cover a pay roll. In all other cases checks will be made payable to "order" or "bearer," and will be drawn in favor of the person, firm, or corporation to whom the payment is to be made.

PAR. 42. Each official check of a disbursing officer must state on its face the object or purpose to which the proceeds are to be applied; such statement may be brief, but must be clear, i. e., "Pay roll," adding the place and month, "contract for construction," giving the work, etc. Payment will be refused on all checks when this requirement is disregarded, and report of the fact made to the treasurer.

PAR. 43. Checks will not be returned to the drawer after payment, but the bank shall furnish the officer with a monthly statement of his official account.

PAR. 44. No allowance will be made any disbursing officer for expenses charged for collecting money on checks.

PAR. 45. In case of death, resignation, or removal of any disbursing officer, checks previously drawn by him will be paid with funds to his credit, unless such checks have been drawn more than four months before presentation or fraud is suspected; then only upon being approved by the treasurer.

PAR. 46. Disbursing officers requiring cash can arrange to obtain it from the collector most convenient, as provided in paragraph 14, regulations from office of the treasurer of the island of Cuba, June 16, 1899, or instruct the bank to forward it. In the latter case shipment by express or post-office money order is authorized; if shipped by express, a bill of lading will be issued to cover the same.


PAR. 47. Each disbursing officer will make application to the treasurer for an official check book.

PAR. 48. The bank will refuse disbursing officers' checks unless drawn on these blanks.

PAR. 49. A disbursing officer in opening his first account will furnish the bank with his official signature, duly verified by some government official whose signature is known to the bank.

PAR. 50. The treasurer will keep a record of all blanks issued, and all unused checks will be returned to him. A disbursing officer transferring any blank checks will take a receipt for the same and make report to the treasurer, giving the numbers of those transferred and the names of the persons receiving them.

PAR. 51. Mutilated official checks will be forwarded to the bank and a record of the date of transmission made on the stub.


PAR. 52. Hereafter all disbursing officers of the public funds of the island of Cuba will make their deposits with the official public depository where it will be most convenient, the establishment of which has been announced from the office of the island of Cuba.

PAR. 53. All deposits will be made to the credit of the "treasurer of the island of Cuba."

PAR. 54. For each deposit made "a certificate of deposit in duplicate will be given, giving the serial number, place, date, and amount, and the name and official capacity of the depositor. The "original" of the certificate of the deposit will be at once forwarded by the bank to the treasurer of the island of Cuba, at Habana, Cuba, and the "duplicate" will be given to the depositor, who will, upon verification, send it to the treasurer.

PAR. 55. All moneys will be deposited identically as collected, each deposit to be accompanied by a deposit slip (No. 104), setting forth the amount of United States funds, the amount of Spanish gold, and the amount of Spanish silver, also the month or months in which funds were collected, noting the exact amount for each month, which information must be given on the original certificate of deposit.

PAR. 56. Each "duplicate" certificate of deposit forwarded to the treasurer by the

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