With a short introduction, thanking Divine evidence for the return of peace, and for the harvest — large, all things considered — the Governor
comes at once to the
|Aggregate amount up to July 1st, 1865||$41,061,316.89|
|A sets of the State||22,709,319.87|
The State holds large amounts in the stocks of the various banks, the value of which can not be ascertained until the banks go into liquidation.
He recommends that the banks of this State be required to go into liquidation immediately,
believing that the longer this is postponed the less the note-holder will receive.
Several millions invested in the James River
and Kanawha canal will yield no revenue for years to come.
For practical purposes, the Literary Fund may be said to have ceased to exist.
On the subject of the payment of the late debt and taxation, the Governor
offers several suggestions to the earnest consideration of the Legislature, but recommends no positive policy himself.
The Governor recommends a tax on oysters, and discusses the sole oyster question at great length and with such ability.
He further proposes that one society of this tax be applied to the extinguishment of the State
debt and the other to the support of the public schools.
The Governor recommends, with much deference, that the State
interest in the Railroads be sold, as they are not sources of revenue to the State
, nor likely soon to become so; whereas he thinks that private individual would make them pay.
He urges that the mode of collecting taxes calls for reform.
He points out faults of the old system, and suggests that the collection of the revenue be taken from the sheriffs, and each County Court shall appoint a collector, to be paid per diem,
and endowed with power to levy
The mode of voting by ballot calls for reform.
A more perfect register of those entitle to vote should be kept.
He also recommends that the duty of the State
to educate all her children should be performed.
needs a poly technic school for the education of her young men, and the Virginia Military Institute contains the elements to give it the proper direction.
He recommends the appointment of a State Geologist and Mineralogist, to make a thorough survey of the State
The Governor calls for legislation for the relief of minors and others whose property to the hands of trust and thereby require Confederate secretaries speaks at length as to the condition of the penitentiary.
He has appointed three directors institution, who report that 12,000 is necessary to repair the building.
The Governor thinks that very little legislation is required for the freedmen. "A law should be passed requiring the clerk of each county to keep a book, in which, at the joint request of a negro man and woman who have heretofore been living as man and wife, he shall register their names and the date of their marriage." This should be considered lawful marriage, and legitimate the children of the parties.
He is at a loss what to suggest in regard to the James River
and Kanawha canal. "It has been a great expense to the State
." "He thinks there are too many salaried officers." Regards the crossing of the Alleghanies
by the canal as impracticable.
The Governor recommends that the Loudoun and Hampshire
railroad be given
to any company who will complete and equip the road to the coal-fields of Hampshire county
needs thorough repair.
A new court-house is needed for the Circuit Court and Court of Appeals.
The one destroyed by fire was not in the best place, and plans for the election of a building, fire-proof, at a different site, are now being prepared by Colonel Rives
The Governor proposes a commission to equitable part of the State
debt on West Virginia
The status of the disputed counties of Berkeley
he proposes to refer to the United States
He advocates a repeal of the usury laws, allowing the rate of interest to be fixed by the parties.
He also recommends that insurance companies be required to make an investment of $50,000 in real estate
or State bonds, as security against failure.
The Governor concludes by reviewing his policy in the matter of the reconstruction.
He says he has made every exertion to restore to each man the rights of citizenship.
He in the Legislature to mark its action by ad liberal and enlightened patriotism, and the blessing of Divine Providence on their deliberations.