14. Special expenditures for other departments, and under special appropriations, viz.- Continued.
For Army contingencies........ $320,674.92
For Navy Department........... 3,373.45
For signal service............ 3,122.92
Less amount of errors, &c., ascertained
in officer's accounts.......... 20,227.29
From the above statement it will be seen that during the past year accounts to the amount of $284,809,697.72 have passed the official examination required by law, prior to transmission to the Treasury for final examination and settlement. They number 7,913; 7,828 accounts remain on hand to be examined, relating to disbursements, amounting to $221,339,550.48.
During the year proceeding the last annual report from this office the accounts examined and transmitted to the Treasury covered disbursements to the amount of $118,463,312.03.
The increased number and experience of the clerks employed in this branch of the business of this office has enabled them to accomplish more than twice as much as was done during the previous year, but the force is still insufficient to keep pace with the increased expenditures of the Army, and the work is still in arrears.
The Army contains at this time about 1,500 regiments and separate organizations. Each of these regiments has a regimental quartermaster, who is accountable to this office for property or money, or both. There are 644 officers of the regular and volunteer quartermaster's corps, who are generally, when on duty, charged with the disbursement of money.
The commanding officer of each of 15,000 companies is accountable to this office for property of the United States, and renders accounts to the clothing branch of the office. An account of quartermasters" stores is also rendered, in addition to the above, by the commanding officer of each of the cavalry and artillery organizations.
As all these accounts are, under present regulations, to be rendered monthly, there are not less than 220,000 separate regular accounts due at this office in the course of the year.
These accounts are of two general classes:
First. Accounts for the receipt, transfer, and expenditure of money.
Second. Accounts for the receipt, transfer, and issue of property. The former are rendered by law directly to the To, after making a preliminary examination of them, transmits them to the Quartermaster-General for administrative examination.
In this office they are carefully examined, and remarks in relation to errors, violations of law, regulations, or orders; extravagant or unreasonable prices or purchases are indorsed upon the accounts. They are then returned to the Third Auditor for final examination and settlement. The remarks made upon the accounts in this office are communicated to the disbursing officers.
The property accounts are rendered directly by the officer to this office. They are examined and transmitted to the proper officer of the Treasury for final examination and settlement. One portion of