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will be relieved after only a short sacrifice of time devoted to the service of the State ; and in the discharge of duties imposed, your acts, I doubt not, will be governed wholly by considerations of public good.
JNO. S. B RY. EXECUTIVE OFFICE, Lansing, January 7, 1850. S
ANNUAL REPORT of the Auditor General.
AUDITOR GENERAL'S OFFICE,
Lansing, Dec. 1, 1849.5 To the Legislature of the State of Michigan:
In obedience to law, I have the honor to submit the following report of the receipts and expenditures for the fiscal year, ending on the 30th ult., of the state indebtedness and resources, and of other matters appertaining to the state revenue and finances: RECEIPTS AND EXPENDITURES FOR THE FISCAL YEAR
ENDING NOVEMBER 30, 1849. The balance on hand in the State Treasury, at the
close of the preceding fiscal year, ending Nov. 30, 1848, exclusive of amount to meet the then outstanding general fund warrants, was
$51,681 55 Receipts during last fiscal year, as per statement A., 494,165 06
545,846 61 490,399 22
Making available means for the year,
$49 83 For outstanding primary school interest fund warranty
Making actual cash balance in State Treasury,
Much the largest portion of these "receipts has no necessary connection with the proper revenue and expense of the state government. Even of the receipts to the general fund, a considerable proportion is received on account of taxes collected for several counties which return more delinquent taxes than their respectiv : quotas of state tax, and which is paid over to them from time to time. Another item of the receipts to the general fund, not belonging to the state revenue proper, is the payments for redemption of lands sold to individuals at the tax sales, and which is merely paid in to be re-disbursed to the several purchasers on surrender of their certificates of purchase. A large proportion also of the proceeds of the annual tax sales, is for moneys added to the taxes and interest due on the lands sold, to meet the costs of advertising, the accounts of the county treasurers, clerkhire, postages, and other expenses incurred in consequence of the sales, and is merely collected to be paid out again for those specific objects, which constitute no part of the proper expenditures of the state government.
All the receipts to the credit of the Internal Improvement Fund, with the exception of the amount annually accruing as the five per cent. due from the United States on account of lands sold in this state, form no available part of the annual revenue of the state gove erment, being merely the reception of land warrants drawn under different land appropriations for the internal improvement lands, as taken up by the holders of the warrants, and of state bonds or interest warrants for the instalments due from the S. R. R. Co., and on sales of asset lands or other assets.
The receipts on account of the university and school funds, so far as they are for interest, are merely collections to be re-disbursed for the support of schools and of the university, from year to year, to. gether with the interest on the amounts respectively due to the principal of those funds from the state itself.
In order therefore to give a better view of our proper state revenue and expenditures, I have prepared tables C. and D., which give estimates of our annual revenue and expenses, under existing provisions of law, for the next year or two, as near as could be framed, without being able to foretell the exact amounts of part-paid bonds, or of outstanding internal improvement warrants, which might come in to be funded in any one particular year.
of the Internal Improvement Lands entered upon the books of this office, as sold during the last fiscal year, 16,928.22 acres, or $21,160 27 in warrants at the minimum price at which the lands were sold, were for lands previously entered and disposed of at the Land Offioe, under acts authorizing their sale for "orders” drawn directly upon the Commissioner of the State Land Office, without requiring warrants from this office. But to be able to show the total amount nominally realized to the Internal Improvement Fund from sales of these lands, and to keep a correct account in this office with all the several land appropriations, it was found necessary to draw warrants in favor of the Commissioner for lands sold by him upon these land orders, and enter the several amounts, for which warrants were so drawn, as sold under their reepective appropriations. There were diposed of, prior to Nov. 30, 1848, on land orders, as above mentioned, under different appropriations of land, the following quantities, viz: Under Act No. 58, 1844, on the Grand Rapids Bridge, 6,000 acres; under Act No. 106, 1846, on the Bridgeport bridge, in Saginaw county, 3,000 acres; under Act No. 145, 1846, on the Lyons bridge, 2,000 acres; and part of the appropriation on the Grand Rapids Canal, under Act No. 19, 1847, to wit: 5,928.22 acres; making in all, the sum of 16,928.22 acres, sold on land orders, prior to the commencement of the last fiscal year. The balance of InterRal Improvement lands entered upon our books, as sold during the Escal year just closed, were the actual sales for land warrants, or orders on the commissioner, for which warrants have been drawn, during said year. ESTIMATED ANNUAL REVENUE AND EXPENDITURE.
The general result of our present system of taxation and revenue for state purposes, may be summed up by stating that it consists of the following branches or subdivisions. First. A regular annual state tax of 24 mills on the dollar, ranging lately from about $70,000 to $75,000. Second. A tax for interest on our internal improvement state debt, so far as funded; for a portion of which the tax is authorized to be levied in advance, and for the balance, only after the interest has become due. Third. Office charges and part of the interest on taxes paid, lands redeemed, state bids or state tax lands sold at this office. Fourth. Specific state taxes on railroads, banks,
mining and other companies, amounting at present to about $22,000 or $23,000; but which in 1852, and thereafter, will be increased to about $65,000 or $70,000, or more perhaps. And Fifth. The five per . cent on sales of U. S. lands in this state, and the interest on unpaid instalments of our salt spring and state building lands. These sev. eral sources yield at present, in the aggregate, about $140,000 to $150,000; and the only item, except the increased tax on the two principal railroad companies after 1851, liable to much fluctuation or increase, is the tax for interest on that portion of our internal improvement debt not yet funded; and which, as that takes place, is only authorized to be assessed and levied for so much of the interest as has become past due. That provision is liable, I think, to one or two objections; in the first place, it does not with sufficient certainty provide for meeting the interest on our state debt, as it becomes due; nor seem to contemplate doing so with proper punctuality; and on the other hand, in case our outstanding internal improvement fund warrants and part-paid bonds were all funded, it would after a full year's interest on them as funded had become due, provide for a heavier state tax than necessary. Thus, supposing that all of said warrants and bonds should be funded before Jan., 1851, and none of that class of indebtedness paid in on instalments due from the S. R. R. Co., there would then be authorized under Act No. 173, 1848, inpluding the $100,000 Detroit and Pontiac R. R. bonds, the interest on which is provided for in the same act and in the same way, an annual tax for the interest on over $2,000,000 of bonds, amounting to upwards of $120,000: Icaving our other state taxes and income, amounting to about $100,000, or after 1851, to about $150,000, to meet the current expenses of the state government, the interest on the amounts due the school and university funds, and on a balance of about $50,000 other state bonds left after deducting the amounts due from the S. R. R. Co., and on which they pay interest semi-annually at the same rate as the state is paying upon all her now outstanding bonds, or will pay on those to be issued. As our state expenses, other than for interest on our state debt, ought not and will not probably after 1851, exceed $50,000 a year; and the interest due the school and university funds, and on the balance of our funded debt, on which the interest is not provided for by the above mentioned act, after deducting the amount due from the S. R. R. Co.,