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issue no subsistence to the paymasters the year 1776 the artillery were at home, because they are confidered supplied with waggons, horles, and as belonging to the companies drivers, by the quartermatter-ge. abroad, and subsisted with them; neral; and his bills were paid by but the commanding officers of the the ordnance : fince that time the different detachments and compa- waggons have most of them been mies at home, draw upon him for constructed, and the horses pur. sums on account to pay this sub- chased by government, as a mode fistence, and return to him month. less expenlive to the service. The ly pay-lists as their vouchers. conductors, artificers, and labour.
The last account passed by the ers, are paid by monthly pay-lifts, paymaller is that of the year 1776. formed in the office from multer-rolls As each year's account includes the sent thither by the acting commif. receipts and payments of the pay- fary of itares, who fuperintends the maiters abroad during that year, musters. The number of days they the events in America have delayed have been employed is taken from these accounts: the vouchers for a check-list certified by the overthe accounts of the detachment seer of the work. The price of lataken prisoners at Saratoga, subse- brur is according to a rate efta. quent to the year 1776, were 110t' blished long ago by the board of received until December last. ordnance, and adopted in America.
James Fraser, esq. late acting The commissary of flores having paymaster to the artillery, serving certified by his fignature to the with the army in North America, truth of the pay.list, and the com: described to us the service which manding officer of artillery having that officer is intrusted to execute. signed upon it, an order for the
The payment of the subsistence payment, the persons therein nam. and contingencies of the çorps of ed are paid at the office, by the artillery is a different service from paymaster or his clerks, and fign that of paying the expences attend their names or set their marks oping the train of artillery : the fame pofite to the fums they receive. perfon generally executes both; Bills for stores and materials are but in the one service he acts as examined and attested by the com. deputy to the paymaster of the ar- miffary of stores ; and upon this tillery at home, and passes his ac- attestation the commanding officer counts with him ; in the other he relies for the truth of every cir. is an accountant to the board, and cumilance in the bill, and directs passes his accounts in the office of the payment accordingly ; and two the furveyor-general. As commif- witnetes atteft the receipt.
The sary and paymaster to the train, pay lists and bills thus verified and it is his duty to defray every ex: authenticated, are the paymater's penre attending it, both civil and vouchers in the office of the surinilitary, pursuant to the orders of veyor-general. the commanding officer of artillery. A store-keeper at an qut-port or The board of ordnance supply hin garrison becomes an accountant with money for this service, either from having money imprefted to by remittances from home, or by him, to enable him to fulfil the accepting bills of exchange drawn orders of the chief engineer in that by bim, and attested by the com- division. He is the officer appointpanding officer of artițlery, In ee to pay the labourers: the pay. lists, which contain the names of count of the persons who either the persons, and the fums they are have passed, or, are now paffing the intitled to, require the certificate accounts of the sums they itand of the engineers employed in the charged with. By the return to work (to which is generally added this requisition it appears, that that of the overseers), and the order none of the accounts inserted in of the chief engineer for payment; the first list are either passed or the receipts are witnessed, by two palling; but that sums in the leofficers. ''The pay-list, thus per- cond list, amounting to 1,267,7671, fected, is the store-keeper's vouch. 85. 3d. either have been passed since er. He generally, every quarter, December 1780, or are at this sends up to the surveyor-general an time in a train of being passed : we abstract of his payments during the have, therefore, omitted the acquarter, with the vouchers, and counts under both these descriphis affidavit annexed, verifying tions, and inserted in the appendix those payments.
the remaining sub-accountants onWe found in the accounts of the ly, whose accounts are still depend, treasurer of the ordnance as in ing, and who are taking no steps those of the treasurer of the navy, towards their final adjustment. The and pay. master-general of the forces, sum thus remaining insuper upon the names of many persons, to this list is 502,9161. 6s. 41d. ; whom money has been imprested, which being added to 71,5881. gs. and whofe accounts are unsettled. 31d. the amount of the first liit, We issued our precepts to the au- makes the total sum issued on acditors of the impreft, for a list of count, and still depending, in the the persons remaining insuper upon office of the ordnance 57405041. the accounts of the treasurer of the 155. 81d. ordnance, from the 26th of March We find in the progress of this 1673, the most remote date in the inquiry, regulations lately adopted account before us, to the 311t of in this office, tending to produce December 1780: two lists were re- beneficial effects to the public. We turned to this requifition ; the one thall, in the course of our observacontained the names of the persons tions, suggest such further regulato whom money had been impreft- tions as may in our judgment ap. ed between the 26th of March pear practicable and useful. 1673, and the ist of December The mode of forming the esti1-14, with the fums for which mate for the ordnance service, long they severally stand accountable, in ute in this office, is fundamentamounting together to 71,5*81. 98. ally defective. The delign of an 3 d.; the other comprehended the eliimate is to inform the House of names of the persons, and the like Commons what sum will probably issues, from that time to the end of be required for any service in the December 1780, the amount of ensuing year, in order that the lewhich is 1,770,6831. 145.71d. As gillature may, out of the public many of these sub-accountants revenue, provide and appropriate a night have passed their accounts portion adequate to that service, fince December 1785, or may be and thus the nation have an early now palling them, we tranimitted knowledge how much they will be these two lifts to the board of ord. obliged to raise for the most consi. nance; requiring from them an ac. derable expences of the stare, and
for the support of their government, obnoxious to parliamentary cen. credit, and security : every estimate sure. It has been usual to leave ought therefore to be as complete out of the estimate the demand for and comprehensive as the experi- the sea-service : the fund applied ence and foresight of intelligent ofo to that service is 5l. per cent. of ficers can form it; and yet, since the sum voted for the seamen ;-a the year 1720, every annual efti- fund that bears no certain propormate for the ordnance service has tion to the expence; it has never been attended with an account of been sufficient during the late war; fervices performed and not provided the deficiency in one year was for, and sometimes to an amount 260,000l.; and this has been one exceeding the fum in the estimate. of the sources of the accumulation Most of the services in these ac- of the debt. counts were such as might have As the office of ordnance fup. been, many such as were actually plies the navy as well as the army foreseen ; but the usage of office with every article the service rewarranted the omission of them: quires from that department, it the estimate of the year 1783, formn- seems as proper that the estimate ed with a view of comprehending should contain, and the sum grantevery probable expence of the year, ed upon it include, the demand for appears by the account of the un- the one service as for the other : it provided services for that year, pre• may be as eafily computed, and sented to the House of Commons, renders the estimate more uniform with the estimate for this year, to and complete. No good reason have been deficient 111,6341. gs. occurs why, in the formation of a 6d. ; and thus every year has been fund for a particular service, a porincumbered with more than its own tion of it should be borrowed from burthens, with expences that be a sum, voted in a different estimate, longed to, and ought to have been for a different service : it serves onborne by, the revenue of preceding ly to render the account compliyears. Nor is this the only grieve cate, without any advantage to ance; a debt has been accumulat- arise from it. ing, for services not included in The estimate should not only inany preceding either annual efti- clude every foreseen and probable mate, or annual account of unpro. expence, and every ordnance fervided services, until it has amount. vice; but the services should be ed, as appears by the state of that distinguished and ranged, as far as debt prefixed to the estimate of the possible without becoming too mi. present year, and that imperfeet (as nutc, under defined heads, that the far only as it can be ascertained) to House of Cominons may be enabled 877,1961. 75. 6d. Hence the offi- to form a previous judgment upon cers of this board have been oblig- the propriety of each service, and ed to hazard the exercise of powers upon the quantum of the sum renot warranted by the constitution : quired for it. It is much easier to they have applied public money to prevent the incurring an expence other services than those to which than to refuse to allow it after it is it was appropriated, and involved incurred. There can be little dif. the nation in debis without the con- ficulty in forming an accurate and sent, or even the knowledge, of perfect estimate, adapted to the ore parliament; rendering themselves dinary occafions of the service : the
officer may judge, almost to a cer- to, it appears, that, had the forti. tainty, from the experience of for- tications at Portsmouth, therein mer years independe at of such mentioned, being executed by fudde a mergencie, as are beyond measurement and contract, the 'dif. the reach of human fo'e ght) what ference in favour of the public had fuin will be wanted for each head; been 55,0571. 8s. 644.; and to and, fhould the provi'ion exceed complete them by contract will be the demand, the excess may be a saving to the public of 35,91 21. well applied in increasing the fund, 155. 3d.—The price at which tim. should happils fuch a fund be elta- ber and other materials are supblished, for reducing the debt of plied, and different species of work the public.
in the building branch are executThe determination of the board ed, has been reduced in conseof ordnance, in the beginning of quence of this regulation. the year 1782, to advertise for the In an inquiry relative to the ar. different articles wanted in every ticle of gunpowder, we find, that branch of the service, is a regula- the principal depofit in this part of tion that has produced advantage the kingdom, for the g inpowder to the public, the contract for the belonging to government, is at • hire of horses, conduct rs and Purfleet ; ir conhists of five magadrivers, of the year 1.82, in con- zines, placed at the distance of 58 sequence of advertisements, was feet from each otirer : the quantity made upon terms more favourable of gunpowder in store, according to the public than that of the year to the last return of the officers 1775 : 81d. upon the hire, and there, was 35,406 barrels ; con41d. in the ration, for every taining roolb. each; and 7252 half horse per day is a confiderable sav. barrels; that is 3,993,20c1b. of ing: it would have been, in the gunpowder; and, Thould any one hire of 1637 horses, the number of these magazines take fire, it is upon the establishment from the hardly possible but they must all be 18th May, 7:8, to the end of blown up together. Reflecting Oktober 17*2, that is for four years upon the consequences that muit tive months and thirteen days, sup- inevitably attend such an exploposing them upon full pay for half lion, we are of opinion, that the the mime, and upon half pay for danger arising from the situation the other half, 68,1231. 113. ;--and and circumstances of these maga. the saving upon the ration for the zines, is an object that demands fame number, during that period, the immediate attention of the lefuppofing them fupplied the whole gitlature. year, would have been 52,680l. The application to the treasury 145. together 121,3041. 55. exclu. for money, by the board of ordfive of the savings to government nance, is made every month, for by not providing the jackets, caps, such a portion of the total comand
other articles for pound fum applicable to the serthe drivers.
v.ce, as is stated in the monthly By a report of the surveyor-ge- eitimate formed by the clerk of the neral to the board of ordnance, ordnance, for the use of the comdated the roth of May 1783. part missioners of the treasury. The of which we have inserted in the money is issued to the treasurer of appendix with the accounts it refers the ordnance, and remains in his
hands until the instruments direct- unapplied in the hands of the offi. ing the payments are produced to cer-foliciting the iffue, and of the him by the persons intitled : at:er services for which the fupply is rehis resignation, the board continue quired : the defects in the annual to direct him to make payments, estimate for the ordnance service until his balance is nearly exhaust- manifestly shew, that the monthly ed; and when his final account is estimate, formed in the beginning settled, he pays what remains in of the year, upon a conjecture what his hands to his fucceffor: hence, services will arise, and what sums in a quick fuccelsion of treasurers, will be wanted, in every succeilive many balances are existing at the month of that year, can never same time in the hands of different convey to the commissioners of the treasurers, many different accounts treasury, the accurate knowledge are open and carrying on together; they ought to possess previous to there are at this time four accounts the direction of every issue ; and, of treasurers open
payments. therefore, we are of opinion, that Uniformity in the course and in every memorial presented to the modes of transacting the business commissioners of the treasury for a of the public ought to be introdu- supply of money for the service of ced and pursued, as far as is prac. the ordnance, the total fum renain., ticable in fimilar offices : it causes ing unapplied in the hands, or on the intercourse between offices con- the account of the treasurer of the nected to be carried on with greater ordnance, ought to be inserted, toease and expedition, and facilitates gether with the services that are the means of acquiring official the ground of the requisition. knowledge to those persons who The legislature have transferred pass through the different depart. the custody of the cash for the army ments of the state to the high fta- services, from the paymaster-gene. tions of administration; and thus, ral to the Bank of England, upon when a regulation is clearly of ge- the folid ground of preventing the neral utility, it should be extended possibility of an accumulation of to every office, the constitution and public money in the hands of pubobjects of which will admit of the lic officers : this provident regulaapplication. The legislature have tion fhould be univerfal: it should established important regulations in be extended to every office capable the office of the pay maiter-general of admitting it. The effects flowof his majeily's forces : regulations ing from the want of it are still felt fuggeiled by us to be equally ap- by the public : fums liquidated, plicable to the office of treasurer of long-iffued, unapplied, subject to the navy, and which, in the judg- no demand for public service, are
we have formed upon this not yet restored to the potletion and present inquiry, may with equal use of government. We are therepropriety be extended to the office fore of opinion, that all the money of tre. furer of the ordnance. for the service of the ordnance
The commissione.s of the treasury, should be issued to the Bank of whofe duty it is to guard the public England, and placed to the account treafi re, both agiinit fuperfluous of the treasurer of the ordnance, ad mp'ovident ift es, should, bc- subject only to his drafts upon the for they dir et any illue, have governor and company of the Bank know ledge of the sum rum.ning of England, for ordnance fervices: