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MESSAGE FROM THE SENATE, No. 1.

IN THE SENATE, COLUMBIA, S. C., November 28, 1871. Mr. Speaker and

Gentlemen of the House of Representatives : The Senate respectfully informs your honorable body that the Senate has met, a quorum is present, and is ready to proceed to business. By order of the Senate. (Signed)

A. J. RANSIER, President.

The following members obtained leave of absence :
Mr. Hunter, for five days;
Mr. Hagood, for five days.

The Sergeant-at-Arms announced a Message from His Excellency the Governor.

The SPEAKER laid before the House the following:

MESSAGE FROM THE GOVERNOR, No. 1.

STATE OF SOUTH CAROLINA,

EXECUTIVE DEPARTMENT,

COLUMBIA, November 28, 1871. Gentlemen of the Senate and House of Representatives :

You have assembled for the fourth time since the establishment of a system of free government in South Carolina. Pursuant to the Constitution, it is the duty of the Governor to "give to the General Assembly information of the condition of the State, and recommend to their consideration such measures as he shall judge necessary or expedient.”.

The present financial condition of the State especially demands a rigid and unshrinking compliance with this constitutional requirement, in order that the General Assembly and every department of the State Government may unite in a common effort to correct such evils as are remediable, and prevent their recurrence. In this, the last Annual Message that I shall transmit to the General Assembly, I propose to state my views frankly upon the chief matters of public interest, and to give all the facts within my knowledge, without reserve, as alike due to the people, and imposed by my official obligation. I will thus, I trust, be enabled to correct gross exaggerations that are being diligently circulated in reference to our finances, and the entire administration of the State.

In performing this duty I shall not shrink from charging upon others any just share of their responsibility for evil consequences of their acts, and will not hesitate fully to admit my own.

THE STATE DEBT.

The following is the Treasurer's exhibit of the actual debt of the State. I know, from severe personal scrutiny, that this exhibit is full and correct. It shows the present debt of the State in its entirety, suppressing nothing: Statement of Total Amount of Bonds and Stocks Printed by the American

Bank Note Company, and accounted for. 500 Bonds redemption Bills Receivable, at $1,000................$ 500,000 2,000 Bonds payment interest Public Debt, at $1,000.. 2,000,000 1,000 Bonds relief of the Treasury, at $1,000.....

1,000,000 700 Bonds Land Commission, at $1,000.

700,000 800) Bonds redemption Bills Bank of State, at $1,000............ 800,000 1,500 Bonds redemption Bills Bank of State, at $500.

750,000 800 Bonds redemption Bills Bank of State, at $50 .....

40,000 3,500 Bonds conversion State Securities, at $1,000..... 3,500,000 4,000 Bonds conversion State Securities, at $1,000.... 4,000,000 1,200 Bonds conversion State Securities, at $500......

600,000 1,000 Bonds conversion State Securities, at $100....

100,000 Sterling Loan ....

6,000,000 Certificates conversion Stock...

2,550,000

$22,510,000

Accounted for as follows :

On Hand in State Treasury.
Bonds conversion State Securities, not signed...
Bonds relief of Treasury, (7 per cent.).
Bonds payment interest Public Debt......
Bonds redemption Bills Bank of State....
Stock conversion State Securities....

.$ 473,500

101,000

50,000 331,000 2,117,300

$3,072,800 Deposited for Safe Keeping with American Bank

Note Company. Sterling Loan.....

6,000,000 Bonds Cancelled and Destroyed. 500 Bonds, payment interest on Public Debt, burned in State House.......

500,000 500 Bonds conversion State Securities, erroneously

printed, returned and cancelled by American Bank Note Company.

500,000 Conversion Bonds issued in effecting conversions at State Treasury.....

1,260,500 Amount carried forward......

..$11,333,300 $-2,510,000 Brought forward......

$11,333,300 $22,540,000 Conversion Bond, No. 520, cancelled and destroyed at State Treasury.

1,000 Bonds redemption bills Bank State, issued at State Treasury ............

1,259,000 Conversion Stock, issued, cancelled and transferred at State Treasury..........

432,700

13,026,000

$9,514,000

Statement of Debt.

Old Debt .........
Less old bonds, paid July 1, 1871

$6,665,908 98

212,000 00

$6,453,908 98

New Bonds........

$9,514,000 00 Less in hands of Financial Agent, to the credit of Sinking Fund Commission ......

200,000 00

$9,314,000 00

New Bonds, in hands of Financial Agent, now in use as collateral security for loans...

..... $3,773,000 00

Amount of New Bonds sold.......
Old Debt, as above.......

$5,541,000 00 6,453,908 98

$11,994,908 98

The facts and data upon which the foregoing statement, which has been examined and approved by the Financial Board, is based, are open to the inspection of the public, both at the State Treasury and at the Financial Agency, in New York. The Financial Board report that, "the bonds have all been issued and used under the authority of the Act of August 26, 1868, entitled “An Act to authorize a loan to redeem the obligations known as Bills Receivable of the State of South Carolina ;" the Act of August 26, 1868, entitled “ An Act to authorize a loan to pay the interest on the public debt;" the Act of February 17, 186!!, entitled “An Act to authorize a loan for the relief of the Treasury;" the Act of March 27, 1869, entitled “ An Act to provide for the appointment of a Land Commissioner, and to define his powers and duties;" the Act of March 1, 1870, entitled “ An Act to amend an Act entitled 'An Act to provide for the appointment of a Land Commissioner, and to define his powers and duties,' and for other purposes therein mentioned ;" the Act of March 23, 1869, entitled “ An Act to provide for the conversion of State securities ;" and the Act of March 26, 1869, entitled " An Act to authorize the Financial Agent of the State of South Carolina, in the City of New York, to pledge State bonds as collateral security, and for other purposes.”

The three first named Acts authorized the borrowing of two million five hundred thousand dollars, on coupon bonds. Owing to the constant and increasing depreciation in the value of the bonds, it was found necessary, in order to carry into effect the purposes of these several Acts, to issue a much larger number of bonds. The Act for the conversion of State securities, giving authority for a more available and uuiform class of bonds than the one which had, in the first instance, been issued under the several Acts referred to, the remainder of the bonds required to raise the amounts of money authorized by the several Acts were prepared, in accordance with the Act for the conversion of State securities, to the amount above named.

The indebtedness of the State being as above stated, the State authorities now hope to be able to retire the bonds in New York, and to save the securities now hypothecated from sale. It is also intended to discontinue the Financial Agency in New York, except to designate some banking institution as the place for the payment of the interest on the Public Debt."

TAX LEVY, TAXES COLLECTED, AND DELINQUENT TAXES. Many and extravagant statements have been made regarding the assessment and collection of taxes, and those not familiar with the actual facts, when compared with collection of revenue for the same purposes in other States, are doubtless frequently led to believe that taxation is extravagant and unusual. I undertake to say that not a State in the Union has collected less tax in the same length of time in proportion to its population and resources. The following is a correct exhibit of the appropriation of moneys, the levy of tax, collection of revenue per annum, and the delinquent list for the years 1868, 1869 and 1870:

Statement of Amount of Tuxes Levied, Amount Collected, and Appro

priations made, during Years 1868, 1869 and 1870.

Total taxation for 1868, rate of taxation, State,

7 mills........ Total amount collected....

$1,338,742 19
1,163,053 28

Delinquent..

$175,688 91

Total appropriations for the year 1868, exclu

sive of interest on public debt, for which
no appropriation was made........

$817,968 28

Total taxation for 1869, rate, State, 5 mills.... $1,014,901 83
Total amount collected....

766,736 08

Delinquent....

$218,165 75 Total appropriations for the year 1869, in

cluding interest on public debt............ $1,191,805 09

Total taxation for 1870, State, 9 mills.......... $1,670,063 66
Total amount collected......

1,146,037 06

Delinquent .......

$521,026 60 Total appropriations for the year 1870......... $1,604,053 54

Total delinquent taxes.....
Twenty per cent. penalty

$947,881 26 189,576 25

Total..........

$1,137,457 51 If the taxes, as shown in the foregoing statement, had been paid, as they should have been, it would have saved the State at least two millions and a half of bonded debt.

BONDED DEBT.

It must not be presumed that the increase in the bonded debt of the State is the creation, in any considerable degree, of the existing administration. This increase represents mostly liabilities contracted under previous administrations, the form of the obligation, in some cases, alone being changed, while a large fraction consists of bonds issued to meet the matured principal and accruing interest of the ante-war debt, in order to maintain the faith and credit of the State.

The seven hundred thousand dollars of bonds issued for the Land Commission form the only portion of the debt actually created by the present administration, and for this the State has an ample equivalent in the lands purchased, which will ultimately repay both principal and interest.

By reference to the various Acts cited in the foregoing statement of the Treasurer, it will be seen that, with the exception of those authorizing the issue of bonds for the Land Commission, they severally provide that a specified sum of money shall be raised on bonds of the State, and not simply that a given amount of bonds shall be issued.

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