|Of the war expenses the towns now owe (Jan. 1, 1866) ||$8,554,112.95|
|Of the war expenses the State now (Jan. 1, 1866) owes||16,379,484.32|
‘The amount exhibited,’ says the Report,
undoubtedly falls below the actual expenditure.
The Legislature of 1863, chapter 218, imposed a tax upon the several cities and towns, with a view of partially equalizing the expenses of the bounties previously paid by them.
By this act, many of the towns were made debtors to the larger number; and they paid into the State treasury large sums to liquidate the debt thus created by statute.
This transaction has, in many of the debtor towns, been disregarded in making their returns.
Considerable sums have also been paid for interest, and additional expenses have been incurred by the increase of duty imposed upon town officers.
The expenses of the State on account of the war, occasioned by an increase in the number of departments, and an augmentation of clerical force in the regular departments, together with the cost of extra legislation, would, if reckoned, add largely to the general amount above stated.
Extra charges to the Adjutant-General's office and to the Paymaster's office, only, are included in the above statement.
There will be large additions to the State expenses, on account of the aid granted by the State, under standing laws passed since the commencement of the war, to soldiers' families, the accounts of which (May 14, 1866) are still open; and also on account of aid to disabled officers and soldiers, granted by a law passed at the present session.1
The amount of expenditure already made and voted may be regarded as evidence of the interest felt by the citizens of the Commonwealth in the contest through which we have successfully passed, and as a pledge of their devotion to civil liberty, and of their determination to maintain the Union of the States.
No better evidence of the determination of the people of the Commonwealth to support the General Government, in the war, can perhaps be found than the individual contributions given in aid of its prosecution, which, in many of the towns, were astonishingly large.
In Bradford, Watertown, Gardner, Mendon, and Templeton, they