« 이전계속 »
ditions in the Customs Service. He asked for a great deal of information on that subject—what this feature of the service was costing and what that feature was costing—and we were with the utmost difficulty able to furnish that information. Now, we will be able to furnish that information promptly and accurately, and be able to render an account of the appropriation at any time.
SECTION OF SURETY BONDS.
Mr. ALLEN. Mr. Chairman, on page 68 we are asking for a section of surety bonds. It is proposed to take four clerks permanently from the Division of Appointments and place them in this section to do work which they now perform on detail. Mr. Johnson. We discussed one item to-day—where the object was to transfer a clerk to the section of surety bonds, on page 64. At the bottom of page 64 you will find that the current law provides for four clerks of class 3. They are asking that we provide for three at this time, and explained that the other one is not dropped entirely, but transferred to this section that you are now discussing, and I presume that every clerk you are asking for there is provided for somewhere in the bill and will be dropped just as this one is. These men are now doing that work. Mr. ALLEN. Yes, sir; they come partly from the Division of Appointments. One is a clerk on the Secretary's roll, and a messenger from the Internal Revenue Division; all on detail. There are slight increases there, sir. Mr. JoHNSON. How much is the increase? Mr. ALLEN. The work is now performed by clerks detailed from other offices of the department at a cost of $7,720. It is proposed to increase its cost to $9,020 per annum. This is made up of a $500 increase for the clerk in charge, making his salary $2,500, and a o of the clerical force upon a permanent instead of temporary basis. Mr. Johnson. The clerks who are now detailed to do that work draw salaries aggregating $7,720, and under the new arrangement it will cost $9,020? Mr. ALLEN. Yes, sir. Mr. JoHNSON. The principal purpose in asking the change is for administrative purposes, I presume? Mr. ALLEN. Purely that; yes, sir; and the work seems to merit a chief of division at $2,500. The work performed by the section of surety bonds was transferred from the Department of Justice to the Treasury Department by act of Congress approved March 23, 1910. It examines and certifies to the bonds in all departments except the Post Office Department. The number of contract bonds examined and certified will average about 30,000 a year, and the fidelity bonds about 2,000 a year. This section audits the quarterly financial statements of surety companies to determine whether they are complying with the regulations of the department and entitled under them to receive a share of the Government’s bonding business. Twenty-seven are now so listed. Mr. JoHNSON. What is the next item :
Mr. ALLEN. On page 770, under the Division of Revenue-Cutter Service, there is a slight statutory change. In January, 1912, we abolished an office in Baltimore in which we had a draftsman, an assistant draftsman, and a clerk. They were handling the drafting work connected with repairs of revenue cutters. We thought we could do without them, but after trying it we find we can not. This new provision is drawn to correspond with one which appears in the naval appropriation bill each year. It will permit us to pay not to exceed $3,400 for drafting and other services in connection with revenue-cutter work.
Mr. Johnson. There is no increase in the appropriation?
Mr. ALLEN. No increase. It simply enables us to expend from the appropriation for repairs this amount of money, which is required in making blue prints and kindred work. I do not think the work will be continuous or that we will have to spend $3,400. We ask that because it was what it approximately cost us in Baltimore. If we can get along with less, we intend to do so, and I think perhaps We Can.
FRIDAY, Vovember 22, 1912, WAR DEPARTMENT.
STATEMENT OF MR. JOHN C. SCOFIELD, ASSISTANT AND CHIEF CLERK.
FIVE PER CENT REDUCTION.
Mr. Johnson. You have carried the legislation on page 141 into effect. Who would be able to tell me about the reductions made under that provision? Mr. Scofield. I can tell you about them. Five per cent reductions were made, amounting to 78 positions, I think it was. Mr. JoHNsoN. That did not contemplate anybody should be turned out of office? Mr. Scofield. No; we did it by not filling vacancies. Mr. JoHNSON. I notice in the estimates submitted that 50 of the reductions were in the Adjutant General's office and 24 in the three bureaus that were consolidated. Mr. ScoPIELD. Yes; 24 in the 3 that were consolidated and then there were 4 in the Insular Bureau. It has been determined by the Acting Secretary, who handled that feature of the case, that those bureaus could stand the reduction better than the others that were smaller. Mr. JoHNSON. Do you believe that any of the other bureaus could stand a reduction? Mr. ScoPIELD. I hardly think so now. Mr. Johnson. Are you crippled by reason of the 5 per cent reduction in those bureaus? Mr. SCOPIELD. That remains to be seen. If the plans which we have been working on for nearly two years for the simplification and reduction of paper work turn out as we have reason to believe they will and hope they will, and if Gen. Aleshire does what he expects to do and what I believe he will do, it is my opinion in the ordinary course of events we will be able to stand this 5 per cent reduction and get along with it. Mr. JoHNSON. You are not prepared to say whether we could make any further reduction at this time? Mr. ScoPIELD. No; I think it would be premature to do anything of that kind. Mr. JoHNSON. Now, let me ask you one other question—the provision in the legislative bill providing for a 5 per cent reduction. Those reductions I take it generally have been in the lower grades? Mr. ScoPIELD. Speaking generally, they have been; yes. Mr. JoHNSON. We will be glad to hear any further statement you have to make.
SECRETARY's of FICE.
Mr. ScoPIELD. We ask for increases in salaries amounting to $1,090 and we cut out five positions whose total salaries aggregate $2,700, so our estimate is a net reduction of $1,610. The note here explains the reason as fully as I could why we ask those increases. One is an increase of $250 for the disbursing clerk, and that is explained in note A. Then we ask for two carpenters to be raised from $900 to $1,080, an increase of $180. - Mr. JoHNSON. How long have they been in the service? Mr. SCOFIELD. One of them has been in the service four or five years, and the other has been in the service about three years. One thousand and eighty dollars, as explained in Note B, brings their salaries to about the minimum wage paid here in the District for similar work, allowing for holidays and everything. We have two messenger boys at $360, and we are asking in lieu of that for two assistant messengers at $600. The reason we ask for that is that under the civil-service rules a messenger boy at $360 can not get any higher compensation, and we get boys on the roll at $360, and in the course of two or three years they become older and more experienced and want an increased salary, and we can not promote them, and they naturally become dissatisfied. Mr. Johnson. If we were to change this language and call them assistant messengers, you can promote them? Mr. Scofield. If you change the language so as to provide for two assistant messengers at $600—and you would have to put it at $600, because under your general law the assistant messenger gets $720– and strike out the provision for two messenger boys at $360, that would cover it. Mr. Johnson. The intention is to promote these boys and not to go outside? Mr. Scofield. Yes. They are simply blocked as it is and can not get any higher, and it is a hopeless position for them. Mr. Jori Nson. How old are these messenger boys? Mr. ScoPIELD. 16, 17, or 18, something like that, and some of them are very deserving and efficient boys.
AUDIT OF ACCOUNTS.
Mr. JoHNSON. Now, I want to ask somebody in the department, and I do not know who can tell me best, about what effect they find the provision in the legislative bill of last year has on the disbursing at the War Department. We provided in the legislative bill that this administrative audit should take place elsewhere than in the disbursing office. -
Mr. ScoPIELD. It always has in our department. We always have maintained the system which you put into law, and which we always have believed to be the only correct one.
Mr. JoHNSON. That was the law, and we simply reenacted it.
Mr. Scofield. We have always believed in that and we have always done that.
MAILING OF PUBLIC DOCUMENTS.
Mr. Johnson. I want to ask you about another provision that was in the legislative bill. We provided for the mailing of documents from the Government Printing Office instead of the various departments. What effect has that had upon the department? Mr. ScoPIELD. That has had some little effect on the War Department, but not so much, perhaps, as on other departments, for the reason that the great bulk of documents which we issue are not for public distribution as generally understood, but for official distribution to the Army. The only considerable public distribution I can think of just now is the annual report, and of course we distribute those both to the Army and to the public. Mr. JoHNSON. So you are not prepared to tell the committee whether the provision as to the War Department has been a success or not? Mr. ScoRIELD. No; in fact, we are just putting it into operation. We have been turning over to the superintendent of public documents or the Public Printer the things required by law, and it has hardly been in effect long enough to determine. Mr. JoHNson. Mr. Scofield, when you get a letter asking for some document at the War Department, what is done with it under the system you are now operating? Is that letter transmitted to the Public Printer, or do you go to the trouble of acknowledging it? Mr. Scofield. No, sir; we send it to the superintendent of documents. Mr. Johnson. You do not undertake to keep any record of it? Mr. ScoPIELD. We keep no record of it at all. We understand the purpose of this law to be to relieve the department of that work and concentrate in one place, and it would not be consonant with that purpose to make a lot of work out of it. Mr. JoHNSON. That is exactly true. The purpose was not to undertake to cumber your record with letters of that kind and answers to them, and all that sort of thing. Mr. ScoPIELD. Yes, sir. I might say that our system in reference to those things is to get rid of superfluous records. We have a practice of returning papers by indorsement so as to save our filing
space and have had for years and years. Sometimes people do not like to see their papers come back to them, but it saves filing space. Mr. JoHNSON. Is there any other item in the bill you are interested in 7 CONTINGENT EXPENSES.
Mr. ScoPIELD. Yes, sir; two other matters that come under contingent expenses of the War Department on page 159. This provision reads: “Contingent expenses of the War Department for purchase of professional and scientific books,” etc. There should be inserted the following, after the word “for” and before the word “ purchase”: “Contingent and miscellaneous expenses of the War Department and its bureaus, including the,” so that as amended it will read: “For contingent and miscellaneous expenses of the War Department and its bureaus, including the purchase of professional and scientific books,” etc. This matter is explained quite fully in the note and is a merger of the three existing appropriations for contingent expenses of the War Department, including stationery and postage. One of them is $48,000 this year and has been $50,000 until this year, and one of stationery of $25,000, and one of $500 for postage. We simply have combined them and have given the reasons below. Mr. JoHNSON. Mr. Scofield, what paragraph of the bill have those other two items appeared in Mr. Scofield. On page 161. As combined, we are asking simply for the total appropriation heretofore made prior to this year. This last year you cut us down $2,000 in our contingent appropriation, making it $48,000 instead of $50,000. I never knew just why; but supposed it was because we had been heretofore expending $500 a year on an average for car tickets, and it was cut down to $300, which was a saving of $200, and the telephones in residences were cut out, and that averaged about $500, and then there was a saving of about $1,100, I think, on ice. Mr. JoHNSON. Where do you get your ice now : Mr. ScoPIELD. We make it ourselves. That was the only reason I could understand, and I just figured that out myself. Mr. JoHNSON. So far you have not been embarrassed? Mr. ScoPIELD. Not so far; but the reason why we would like to have this increase this year especially is because out of that appropriation we purchase filing furniture, and we are in the process of adopting the flat-filing system. Mr. JoHNSON. In most of the departments we have an item specifically appropriating money for filing devices. You have not that in your department? Mr. ScoPIELD. That is included in the contingent expenses. Mr. JoHNSON. The new filing devices will aid you in economizing? Mr. ScoPIELD. We think there is no question of that. It is a very big subject, and we have been giving it very careful attention. Mr. JoHNSON. How many years will it take you to completely equip the War Department at the rate you are now going? Mr. ScoPIELD. It would depend upon whether you started de novo from now on, or went back and flat-filed the old records. I do not think they would go back and flat-file the old records, but would only go from the present on. I sent around to get an estimate, and they figured it would cost about $19,000, or something like that, to