Exhibit 1283.

[Original in Spanish. L.S. P.I.R., 977.3.]

FEBRUARY 20, 1900.

To the Local Chiefs of the pueblos mentioned in the margin.

With great regret I have observed that the economic department of the administration of this province is hampered with much stupidity in its conduct which causes serious prejudice both to the State and to our social and political standing. In order to strike at the root of these evils, which are due to various causes, though principally to the lack of zeal on the part of those in charge of this department in the pueblos and to the want of a form that might serve them as a basis for good organization; and seconding the wishes of the Government of the Nation, I have seen fit to decree the following rules:

The popular boards will, as soon as possible, form their budgets of receipts and expenditures for the fiscal year of 1900, taking as a basis and model the same budgets of the municipalities created by the Royal Decree of the 19th of May, 1893, of the Spanish Government with the reforms introduced by the budget law in force, in accordance with the model accompanying herewith, and following wholly the regulations for its execution published in "La Gaceta de Manila" of the same year, excepting the item of billiards which should be eliminated from the list of receipts.

There remains but one more thing for me to state, and that is, that the products and sales of rural properties, formerly belonging to the religious corporations, shall not be classed under local funds but under the State the same as the industrial tax and other taxes which never have belonged to the municipality, forming them under separate accounts, according to orders I have already given, and as preliminary documents you will remit to this Headquarters the list of tax-payers of the certificate of citizenship, list of the business men and of the lessees of the Treasury lands.

In order to furnish the pueblos facilities in the formation of their budgets, I have deemed it proper to continue the old local system of administration, at least, provisionally; advising them that those local departments whose service might cause trouble to the work of the municipality, especially during the present state of affairs, should be sold at public auction under specifications which shall be registered in document form. [In other words a monopoly of such things as ferries, slaughter houses etc. could be leased to the highest bidder. - TRANSLATOR.]

You shall proceed to collect 50% on burials and on the license fees for fiestas, which intention you will communicate to the parish priests of your respective pueblos, transcribing to them this decree in so far as is necessary, giving them a copy of the accompanying form of budget for their information and compliance of that part thereof which concerns them.

Let this be transmitted from one pueblo to another and the last one will return it to me with the acknowledgments of all.


Politico-Military Governor Gen'l.