페이지 이미지
PDF
ePub

to do this. We told them to allow the accounts until we could have i. opportunity to present this matter to Congress, and this has been One. Mr. JoHNSON. What use do you make of a photostat in the Treasury Department? Mr. WILMETH. It is used for copying papers of all sorts and descriptions, from the plat of ground on which public buildings are located to warrants and checks of disbursing officers, to show the indorsements. Questions are arising continually as to such indorsements. Mr. JoHNSON. It is a great labor-saving machine? Mr. WILMETH. It has saved us very, very much, indeed. That machine paid for itself the first two months we had it in there. Mr. JoHNSON. It does not require the services of a very highpriced man? Mr. WILMETH. I have a colored messenger in my office who operates, it, who gets $720 a year. Before that we had higher grade clerks going around tracing signatures and hunting through the files to get out these papers. Now the office concerned sends the paper to the office, and it is put on this photostat machine. You can take a picture on that machine in about 30 or 40 seconds, and the messenger can go right back with the papers to his office. You see the Treasury Department has a great deal of work of this kind, because we have the vouchers of all departments there, and there are calls coming from the courts continually, and from claimants, as to whether the papers under which they were paid are genuine. Mr. Johnson. What is the next item : Mr. ALLEN. There is just a slight change on page 104. Mr. WILMETH. We are asking that the words “stamp ink be stricken from that appropriation, because we find that is carried in the appropriation for stationery and has no place here. Mr. JoHNSON. Why can not the italicized language on page 105 with reference to supplies for photostat come out of that same appropriation? It is photographic paper, is it not? Mr. WILMETH. It is a sensitive paper we buy which we have classed there as a miscellaneous supply, and it amounts to quite a little. Mr. Johnson. However, this item of $8,000 is not increased by reason of that expenditure? Mr. WILMETH. No, sir. Mr. Johnson. What is the next item you are interested in 7

PURWEYING DEPOT.

Mr. WILMETH. On page 107. In the closing days of the last session of Congress you authorized the removal of the purveying depot from its quarters in the Union Building, which we rented, to one of the vacant buildings belonging to the Government on Pennsylvania Avenue and made a $2,000 appropriation to cover the expenses of moving and the installation of the purveying depot at this new location. You also made provision for heating and lighting in the sum of $700. We are now asking you to give us $700 for heating, and lighting and $50 for shelving. We will have to have that if the bureau continues at that building. That does away with the $3,000

you were paying as rent. This simply covers heat, light, and shelving

Mr. JOHNSON. And is a saving of $2,250.
Mr. WILMETH. Yes, sir.

LAYING OF GRANOLITHIC SIDEWALK.

Mr. JOHNSON. What about the next item for laying new granolithic sidewalks; are you interested in that?

Mr. WILMETH. Yes, sir. Formerly all of the shipping in the Treasury Department was conducted on the Fifteenth Street side. That has been changed, and it all moves from the court of the building at the west side, down below the sidewalk, a very convenient arrangement. Now, this sidewalk, from continued use of freight and shipping, has become very much broken and out of repair. It is in bad condition all along the east front of the Treasury Department; so much so that we felt justified in asking for this new appropriation of $10,000. A careful estimate has been made of that by an engineer, and that is the figure he gave us.

Mr. JOHNSON. Is there not such a provision in the District appropriation bill?

Mr. WILMETH. Mr. Chairman, we have asked the District people to do this for us, and they made the effort to get it, and finally they said they wished the Treasury Department would take it up and try it itself.

FIRE HOSE.

Mr. JOHNSON. What is the next item?

Mr. WILMETH. For new fire hose for the Treasury Building, $1,000. Mr. Chairman, we have had a test made of the fire hose there. We asked for this amount last year. This is urgently needed. We have not had any fire and do not expect to have one if we can possibly avoid it; but if we were to have one I think we would get this appropriation, and we ought to have it before we have the fire. Some of the old hose has been there so long it has become rotten and full of holes. I have had a careful test of it made, and this is based on actual needs.

MAILING OF DOCUMENTS.

Mr. Johnson. I do not know whose duty it would be to tell about it, but in the legislative bill of last year we provided that documents should be mailed from the Government Printing Office instead of the various departments, and whoever is the proper person to answer for the Treasury Department as to your experience under that law, we want to hear from you.

Mr. WILMETH. I can answer that, sir.

Mr. JOHNSON. We would like to know whether it has handicapped you or promises to work an economy.

Mr. WILMETH. It has not handicapped us in the least. We welcomed that change, because we think it is in the interests of economy and efficiency. All of our mailing activities have been transferred to the Government Printing Office, and we are now in the last stages of transferring all documents that we had on file in the department to be mailed out upon request, except a minimum number of copies

for departmental use—I think not more than a dozen in any instance, generally three or four copies—to supply our own needs. This will enable us to make some saving. You will see in the Division of Mails and Files no document clerk is being asked for this year, and while we have not had a long time to try it out, yet, so far as we have gone, we are pleased with it. We were glad to see the legislation. It is working splendidly. Mr. JoHNsoN. Mr. Wilmeth, if a letter is received at the Treasury Poponent asking for a particular document, what is done with that letter? oil. WILMETH. Sent right down to the Government Printing Ce. Mr. JoHNSON. You do not undertake to keep a force of people at the Treasury Department to copy that letter and answer it, and all that sort of thing? Mr. WILMETH. Not at all, sir. Mr. JoHNsoN. I am very much obliged to you, because we wanted to know how the provision was working. We put it in believing it would help you to economize and save labor, and we are very anxious to know what your experience has been and how you like it. Mr. WILMETH. It is working very satisfactorily, sir.

APPOINTMENT DIVISION.

Mr. ALLEN. Mr. Chairman, we are asking for increases in the Division of Appointments. Col. Lyman, the chief of the division, is here, and I will be glad to have him state the reasons for them.

Mr. JoHNSON. Mr. Lyman, we will be glad to hear you in regard to the changes you are asking for.

Mr. LYMAN. Mr. Chairman, we are asking for an increase in compensation of the chief of division of $500, of the assistant chief of division $250, of the executive clerk $250; and we are asking for two clerks at $2,000, who are now clerks of class 4. The reason for those increases is that, as compared with compensations paid in the other divisions, it was believed these increases should be made as a fair measure of justice to the people who are doing the work. I do not want to take very much time of the committee, but there is, I know, in some quarters, I do not say it is true in this committee, a misapprehension as to the character and extent of duties performed in the Division of Appointments, and may I state very briefly, and in the most summary way, that the duties comprise dealing with matters of appointment, promotions, discipline, dismissal, leave of absence, not only of the people in the Treasury Department proper, but in the outside services of the department, such as the Customs Service, the Internal-Revenue Service, Public Health Service, the Revenue-Cutter Service, and the Life-Saving Service, those of the Public Building Service, and the Custodian and Janitor Service. These services are scattered throughout the country, and all of these questions ultimately reach the Division of Appointments for consideration, and involve, of course, a very extensive correspondence, a good deal of investigation often, the accumulation of quantities of papers bearing upon these investigations that are required by the Secretary and the Asistant Secretary for their consideration.

Mr. JoHNSON. If the committee allows you the increases you ask for, the proposition is to promote somebody already in the division and not to go outside?

Mr. ALLEN. Yes, sir; that is true.

Mr. LYMAN. We do not go outside. It is simply an increased compensation for the people already in the division. I am giving you this outline of the duties of the division that you may have a correct idea of the importance and extent and character of the work.

AUDIT OF CUSTOMS ACCOUNTS.

I want to state, in connection with the Customs Service, that the Division of Appointments is the administrative, auditing, and accounting office for the Customs Service. It deals with the expenditure of the customs appropriations, amounting to in the neighborhood of $11,000,000 a year. Heretofore it has dealt with one side of that subject; that is, the advance of funds out of that appropriation into the hands of the disbursing officers for disbursement of salaries and expense incident to the service. On the 1st of July there was assigned to the division the other side of the subject, and that is the actual handling of the expenditures. The advances made to disbursing officers and collectors and surveyors of customs are made on estimates which are in detail. These estimates have to be examined carefully in the Division of Appointments to see whether they are justified by the law and the conditions of the service, and money advanced thereon. At the end of each disbursing period, one month, a schedule of disbursements which shows the balance on hand at the beginning of the period, the amount and character of the expenditures by items during the period, and the balance on hand at the end of the period is made to the Division of Appointments where the bookkeeping necessary to the appropriation account and the expenditure account is done. This is a very important branch of the service, and involves very careful consideration, and the two clerks who are recommended for an increase in compensation from $1,800 to $2,000 are connected with the Customs Service, one having the personnel side of the service, with many administrative features, and the other having this administrative bookkeeping. They are doing a very important work, and I feel that the increase of compensation is richly merited.

Mr. JoHNsoN. When the Customs Service is reorganized the auditing for the Customs Service will be done in the Division of Customs, will it not?

Mr. LYMAN. No, sir.

IN THE MATTER OF THE ADMINISTRATIVE EXAMINATION OF CUSTOMS ACCOUNTS IN THE DIVISION OF APPOINTMENTS, TREASURY DEPARTMENT.

1. Under the authority contained in the so-called Dockery Act, which authorized the heads of the several executive departments to make appropriate rules and regulations to secure a proper administrative examination of all accounts sent to them, as required by section 12 of the act, before their transmission to the auditors, and for the execution of other requirements of the act, the Secretary of the Treasury, on October 6, 1894, issued the following Order :

“It is hereby ordered that all estimates or requisitions of any kind or character drawn by authorized officers for advance or allowance of funds or expenses on account of collecting the revenue from customs, shall be sent to the

Division of Appointments, Secretary's office, Treasury Department, for record and action.” This order did not, however, change the existing practice, as the duties outlined in this order had been performed in the Division of Appointments for a great many years. A publication of the department of July 1, 1877, relative to the organization of the office of the Secretary of the Treasury, contains this item among others, enumerating the duties assigned to the Division of Appointments: “And the examination of all estimates for salaries and compensations of officers and employees, and of incidental expenses payable from the appropriation for collecting the customs duties and keeping account thereof.” A circular containing similar provisions was issued on February 9, 1888, and Other orders and circulars similar in character have been issued at various times since the Dockery Act. 2. Under these various orders the Division of Appointments has received from collectors and surveyors of customs acting as collectors estimates and requisitions for advances of funds as required, such estimates stating the specific amounts required for each object of disbursement. These estimates have been examined in the Division of Appointments and checked up with its records, and, so far as the estimates for expenses of personal service were concerned, if found to agree with the records of the division, have been approved and the amounts called for advanced. In all cases of contingent expenses a full statement of the need of such expenses has been required and authority to incur them issued prior to the making of the estimate, and vouchers for all these expenses are received in the division before payment and verified, certified, and payment authorized. All of this amounts to an administrative examination of the accounts of the customs Service. 3. On the 1st of July last, by authority and direction of the Secretary of the Treasury, there was installed in the Division of Appointments a system of bookkeeping which not only calls for the proper record of requisitions and advances of funds, but also of all details of expenditures made by collectors. As it is impracticable to examine the salary vouchers of collectors in this division, it has been understood that the examination and approval of the estimates for these expenses prior to payment is a substantial compliance with the requirements of an administrative examination. 4. The fact that 90 per cent of all the expenses of the customs service is salary paid to employees, and the further fact that the Appointment Division is the only place in the Treasury Department where there is a complete record of the personnel of the service, make it most convenient that the estimates for the advance of funds for payment of salaries should be examined and verified in that division. The other tenth of expenses, or less, being for various items of contingencies and embraced in the same requisition for advance of funds, can be more conveniently attended to in that division than elsewhere; in fact, there is no division or bureau in the Treasury Department where the administrative examination of customs accounts could be satisfactorily attended to but the Division of Appointments, and undoubtedly this has determined the action of the various Secretaries of the Treasury who have passed on the question in assigning these duties to that division.

ADMINISTRATIVE AUDIT.

Mr. JoHNSON. How does the new law we incorporated in the legislative bill at the last session in regard to the administrative audit in the Treasury Department work? You were living up to the Dockery law before that, were you not ? Mr. LYMAN. Not completely. We never had facilities quite to live up to the Dockery law, but we are doing it now, and since the 1st of July under your requirement, and we are carrying out the Dockery law completely. Mr. Johnson. How do you find it operates; is it satisfactory ! Mr. LYMAN. Entirely so. Until then we were never able to furnish the Secretary of the Treasury a complete statement of financial con

« 이전계속 »