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engage in the business of private banking in the District of Columbia prior to the first day of January, nineteen hundred and six.' A copy of the bill, amended as suggested, is herewith transmitted. Very respectfully,

HENRY B. F. MACFARLAND,

President Board of Commissioners District of Columbia. Hon. J. W. BABCOCK,

Chairman Committee on the District oj Columbia, House of Representatives. The following taken from the annual report of the Comptroller of the Currency for 1906, with reference to the act of Congress approved June 25, 1906, and urging legislation such as is involved in the bill herewith reported, will be of interest in this connection, and is hereby made a part of this report, as follows:

SAVINGS BANKS IN THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA.

In my annual report for 1905 attention was called to the necessity for legislation regulating banking in the District of Columbia, in order to secure to depositors in banks organized under authority of State laws and doing business in the District the same measure of protection that is afforded depositors in banks and trust companies organized under Federal laws.

In line with this suggestion and the recommendation of the Commissioners of the District of Columbia, an act was passed and approved June 25, 1906, placing under the supervision of the Comptroller of the Currency all savings banks, savings companies, trust companies, and other banking institutions organized under any act of Congress or by virtue of the laws of any of the States having an office or banking house in the District of Columbia for the receipt of deposits or savings.

Previous to this enactment the only banking institutions in the District of Columbia under official supervision were the national banks and trust companies organized under acts of Congress. Banking institutions doing business in the District, but organized under authority of State laws, were subject practically to no official supervision whatever-Federal, State, or District.

When the act of June 25, 1906, went into effect there were 14 institutions of this class operating in the District of Columbia. Six of these were incorporated under the laws of Virginia, six under the laws of West Virginia, one under the laws of Connecticut, and one under the code of laws for the District of Columbia as amended by the act of June 30, 1902.

On September 4, 1906, the date of their first report of condition made to the Comptroller under the above-mentioned act, 13 of these institutions showed deposits aggregating $4,191,739. Banking institutions having offices or banking houses in foreign countries as well as in the District of Columbia being required by the act mentioned to make and publish semiannual reports only, no report was received from the International Banking Company, the only institution of this class having a banking house in the District.

All of these institutions were examined during the past few months by a nationalbank examiner. Two of them were found to be insolvent, and were immediately closed and placed in the charge of receivers, namely, the Aetna Banking and Trust Company and the Peoples Savings Bank.

The first-named company was organized under the laws of West Virginia May 14, 1901. Its principal office was located in Butte, Mont. It operated a branch in Washington, D. C., and was reported as maintaiuing another in New York City: An examinination of the Washington branch disclosed a condition of hopeless insolvency, and immediately upon its being closed by the Comptroller the parent bank at Butte suspended business. A receiver was placed in charge of each bank by the Comptroller. No books or assets whatever were found at the New York office. The liquidation of this concern has not progressed far enough to enable an accurate statement to be made. What disposition was made of the funds or who is responsible for their disappearance has not yet been determined, but apparently the bank has been looted by its officers, and the prospects for any material returns to the depositors and other creditors are very discouraging.

The failure of this bank affords a striking illustration of the urgent necessity for more adequate legislation regulating banks of this class operating in the District of Columbia, and providing for the punishment of offenses committed against the banking laws.

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The supervisory powers conferred upon the Comptroller over institutions of this kind by the act of June 25, 1906, are insufficient, as they only give him authority to require them to make and publish sworn reports of condition, to cause an examination to be made into their affairs whenever he may deem it necessary, and to take possession of and appoint a receiver for any such institution for the same reasons that he is authorized to take possession of and appoint a receiver for a national bank.

If the capital stock of any such bank becomes impaired by losses or otherwise, he has the power to require the impairment to be made good within a stated time under the alternative penalty of liquidation or receivership. If an examination discloses a condition of insolvency, he may close the bank's doors, take possession of the institution, and appoint a receiver to wind up its affairs; but there is no law, Federal or District, regulating the conduct of the bank's business or empowering the Comptroller to correct abuses or dangerous practices which jeopardize the safety of the institution and ultimately result in insolvency and irreparable loss to depositors.

The provisions of the national banking laws covering crimes and misdemeanors do not apply to these banks, and no adequate laws of this nature are provided by the District Code.

The remedy recommended for this condition of affairs is the enactment of a law requiring banks and banking companies of this class to incorporate in the District of Columbia, instead of permitting them in the absence of such a statute to operate under charters obtained from neighboring States, which do not appear to retain any control or to exercise any supervision over them. All institutions of this kind in operation in the District of Columbia at the time of the approval of the proposed act should be required to reincorporate under its provisions within a stated time or to cease doing business in the District.

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CONGRESS, | HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES.} No.

2d Session

SUPREME LODGE OF THE KNIGHTS OF PYTHIAS.

JANUARY 25, 1907.-Referred to the House Calendar and ordered to be printed.

Mr. TAYLOR, of Ohio, from the Committee on the District of Colum

bia, submitted the following

REPORT.

[To accompany H. R. 17212.]

The Committee on the District of Columbia, to whom was referred the bill (H. R. 17212), to amend an act to incorporate the Supreme Lodge of the Knights of Pythias, report the same back to the House with the recommendation that it do

pass. Section 2 of the act approved June 29, 1894, reads as follows: That the said corporation shall have the power to take and hold real and personal estate, not exceeding in value one hundred thousand dollars, which shall not be divided among the members of the corporation, but shall descend to their successors for the promotion of the fraternal and benevolent purposes of said corporation.

The purpose of the proposed legislation is to remove the restriction from the above section, which limits the corporation from taking and holding real and personal estate in excess of $100,000, so that they will be empowered to take and hold such an amount as will be necessary for the proper conduct of the corporation. Your committee has been informed that the large and steady growth of this order since its incorporation by Congress, in 1894, thirteen years ago, makes the removal of the restriction absolutely necessary. As this corporation exists by virtue of an act of Congress, any change in its charter can only be had by Congressional action, and as the purposes of the organization are fraternal and benevolent, your committee believe that the legislation herein reported should be enacted into law.

This measure was referred to the Commissioners of the District of Columbia, whose report is as follows:

OFFICE COMMISSIONERS OF THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA,

Washington, June 27, 1906. DEAR SIR: The Commissioners of the District of Columbia have the honor to state with reference to H. R. 17212 of the present session, “To amend an act to incorporate the Supreme Lodge of the Knights of Pythias," which was referred to them at your instance for their examination and report, that they have repeatedly written to representatives of the organization mentioned for a statement of the special

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reasons for the desired legislation, but have received no information from them on the subject. They also reierred the matter to the corporation counsel and received an opinion from that official, a copy of which is herewith transmitted. In view of the fact that they have not been advised as to the circumstances which led to the introduction of the bill, they are not prepared to make any recommendation in the premises. Very respectfully,

HENRY B. F. MACFARLAND,

President Board of Commissioners, District of Columbia. Hon. J. W. BABCOCK,

Chairman Committee on the District of Columbia, House of Representatires.

APRIL 6, 1906. GENTLEMEN: I have the honor to return to you H. R. 17202, entitled "A bill to amend an act to incorporate the Supreme Lodge of the Knights of Pythias.”

Section 2 of the act approved June 29, 1894, incorporating this body provides "That the said corporation shall have the power to take and hold real and personal estate, not exceeding in value one hundred thousand dollars, which shall not be divided among the members of the corporation, but shall descend to their successors for the promotion of the fraternal and benevolent purposes of said corporation.”'

The purpose of the bill intends to strike out the words “not exceeding in value one hundred thousand dollars," thus giving the corporation power to take and hold real and personal estate of unlimited value for the purposes of the corporation.

The general policy of the law as indicated in the Code of the District of Columbia applicable to institutions of learning, manufacturing, agriculture, mining, mechanical, insurance, mercantile, transportation, market, savings bank corporations, and building associations restricts the quantity of land such corporations shall hold to what is necessary for their purposes, and in the case of manufacturing and other corporations of like character, the personal estate as well as the real estate which is necessary

Reference to sections 580, 607, and 700 of the Code of the District of Columbia will give fuller information on this subject. Religious societies may acquire an acre of land. . (Sec. 587 of the Code, District of Columbia.)

Boards of trade, one city lot and building in the District. (Sec. 703, Code, District of Columbia.)

Benevolent, charitable, educational, literary, musical, scientific, religious, or missionary societies may hold real and personal estate necessary for their purposes and their real and personal property the clear annual income from which shall not exceed in value $25,000. (Sec. 600, Code, District of Columbia.)

Trust loan, safe deposit, title insurance and mortgage companies may hold and convey real estate not exceeding in value $500,000, and such in addition as may be acquired in satisfaction of debts. (Sec. 726, Code, District of Columbia.)

Whether in view of the policy indicated in the legislation above set forth, it is the opinion of the Commissioners that this bill should contain no restriction in value of the real and personal property such corporation may hold and acquire is a matter respectfully submitted for consideration. Very respectfully,

E. H. Thomas,

Corporation Counsel. The COMMISSIONERS OF THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA.

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CONGRESS,

RETENT ON CONTRACTS WITH THE DISTRICT OF

COLUMBIA.

JANUARY 25, 1907.-Referred to the House Calendar and ordered to be printed.

Mr. TAYLOR, of Ohio, from the Committee on the District of Colum

bia, submitted the following

REPORT.

[To accompany H. R. 21684.]

The Committee on the District of Columbia, to whom was referred the bill (H. R. 21684) to amend section 2 of the act entitled "An act regulating the retent on contracts with the District of Columbia,” approved March 31, 1906, report the same back to the House with the recommendation that it do pass.

Section 2 of the act approved March 31, 1906, reads as follows: Sec. 2. That this act shall cover and comprehend all contracts for the construction of bridges and sewers as herein specified, which are now completed by the contractors according to their contracts and accepted by the Board of Commissioners of the District of Columbia.

The act approved March 31, 1906, failed to provide for the retent on contracts which were pending at the date of the passage of the act and not completed, and consequently worked inequitably against certain contractors who had not finished their work and were carrying it on at the date of the passage of the above-mentioned act. The bill herewith reported amends the law so as to allow such contractors, who have since completed their contracts, to share in the provisions of the act.

This measure has received the approval of the Commissioners of the District of Columbia, as will be seen by their following letter on this subject: OFFICE COMMISSIONERS OF THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA,

Washington, December 14, 1906. Sir: The Commissioners of the District of Columbia have the honor to submit the following on H. R. 21684, Fifty-ninth Congress, second session, “to amend section two of the act entitled 'An act regulating the retent on contracts with the District of Columbia,' approved March thirty-first, nineteen hundred and six,” which you referred to them for examination and report.

The act which it is the purpose of this bill to amend was passed at the request of the Commissioners of the District of Columbia. The object of the bill was to change existing law by the reducing in the case of certain contracts the period within which

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