A-20508, NOVEMBER 28, 1927, 7 COMP. GEN. 355

A-20508: Nov 28, 1927

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ACCOUNTS - INDIVIDUAL INDIAN MONEYS - DISPOSITION OF SMALL INACTIVE BALANCES SMALL BALANCES CARRIED BY SUPERINTENDENTS OF INDIAN AGENCIES AND SCHOOLS TO THE CREDIT OF INDIAN PUPILS WHOSE WHEREABOUTS ARE UNKNOWN AND WHOSE ACCOUNTS OF PRIVATE MONEYS HAVE BEEN INACTIVE FOR SEVERAL YEARS SHOULD BE COVERED INTO THE TREASURY TO THE CREDIT OF A SPECIAL FUND DESIGNATED AS . 1927: I HAVE YOUR LETTER OF NOVEMBER 5. AS FOLLOWS: THERE ARE NOW CARRIED IN THE ACCOUNTS OF THE SUPERINTENDENT OF THE CHILOCCO BOARDING SCHOOL. THE GREATER NUMBER HAVE BEEN CARRIED FOR ABOUT EIGHT YEARS. THE LABOR INVOLVED IN CARRYING THEM WILL BE STILL FURTHER INCREASED IF THE ACCOUNTS ARE TO BE CARRIED INDEFINITELY. A RULING BY YOUR OFFICE INDICATING THE PROPER LEGAL DISPOSITION WHICH MAY BE MADE OF THESE OLD ACCOUNTS IN ORDER THAT THE SUPERINTENDENT OF THE CHILOCCO SCHOOL MAY BE RELIEVED OF THE NECESSITY OF CARRYING THEM IS DESIRED.

A-20508, NOVEMBER 28, 1927, 7 COMP. GEN. 355

ACCOUNTS - INDIVIDUAL INDIAN MONEYS - DISPOSITION OF SMALL INACTIVE BALANCES SMALL BALANCES CARRIED BY SUPERINTENDENTS OF INDIAN AGENCIES AND SCHOOLS TO THE CREDIT OF INDIAN PUPILS WHOSE WHEREABOUTS ARE UNKNOWN AND WHOSE ACCOUNTS OF PRIVATE MONEYS HAVE BEEN INACTIVE FOR SEVERAL YEARS SHOULD BE COVERED INTO THE TREASURY TO THE CREDIT OF A SPECIAL FUND DESIGNATED AS ,UNCLAIMED INDIVIDUAL INDIAN MONEYS (SPECIAL FUND)" TO BE HELD IN TRUST FOR THE PAYMENT OF CLAIMS SUBMITTED BY SUCH INDIANS.

COMPTROLLER GENERAL MCCARL TO THE SECRETARY OF THE INTERIOR, NOVEMBER 28, 1927:

I HAVE YOUR LETTER OF NOVEMBER 5, 1927, AS FOLLOWS:

THERE ARE NOW CARRIED IN THE ACCOUNTS OF THE SUPERINTENDENT OF THE CHILOCCO BOARDING SCHOOL, OKLAHOMA, ABOUT 37 INDIVIDUAL ACCOUNTS IN AMOUNTS OF $1.00 OR LESS, IN FAVOR OF FORMER STUDENTS OF THAT SCHOOL, WHOSE PRESENT WHEREABOUTS THE SUPERINTENDENT, AFTER DILIGENT INQUIRY, HAS UP TO THE PRESENT BEEN UNABLE TO ASCERTAIN.

A FEW OF THESE ACCOUNTS DATE FROM 1925 AND 1926, BUT THE GREATER NUMBER HAVE BEEN CARRIED FOR ABOUT EIGHT YEARS. SOME REPRESENT AMOUNTS TRANSFERRED FROM THE ACCOUNTS OF THE CARLISLE INDIAN SCHOOL AT THE TIME OF ITS DISCONTINUANCE (1918).

THE CLERICAL WORK INVOLVED IN CARRYING THESE ACCOUNTS FOR SO MANY YEARS HAS BEEN ENTIRELY OUT OF PROPORTION TO THEIR VALUE, AND OWING TO THE REGULATION THAT ACCOUNTS COVERING PUPILS' INDIVIDUAL FUNDS MUST BE RENDERED MONTHLY, THE LABOR INVOLVED IN CARRYING THEM WILL BE STILL FURTHER INCREASED IF THE ACCOUNTS ARE TO BE CARRIED INDEFINITELY. FOR THIS REASON, A RULING BY YOUR OFFICE INDICATING THE PROPER LEGAL DISPOSITION WHICH MAY BE MADE OF THESE OLD ACCOUNTS IN ORDER THAT THE SUPERINTENDENT OF THE CHILOCCO SCHOOL MAY BE RELIEVED OF THE NECESSITY OF CARRYING THEM IS DESIRED.

IT IS UNDERSTOOD THAT THE FUNDS IN QUESTION REPRESENT PRIVATE MONEYS OF FORMER PUPILS, AND THAT DUE TO THEIR FAILURE TO APPLY THEREFOR WHEN THEY LEFT THE INDIAN SCHOOL, AND THE INABILITY OF THE SUPERINTENDENT TO LOCATE THEM THEREAFTER, A PROPER DISPOSITION OF THE FUNDS BY PAYING THE SAME TO THE INDIANS ENTITLED THERETO HAS NOT BEEN POSSIBLE. THE MONEY THUS BELONGING TO THESE INDIANS SHOULD BE HELD AVAILABLE IN SOME FUND, SO THAT PAYMENT MAY BE MADE IF AND WHEN CLAIMS THEREFOR ARE SUBMITTED BY THE PARTIES ENTITLED THERETO.

ACCORDINGLY, YOU ARE ADVISED THAT THE FUNDS IN QUESTION MAY BE DEPOSITED AND COVERED INTO THE TREASURY TO THE CREDIT OF A SPECIAL FUND TO BE HELD IN TRUST FOR THE INDIVIDUAL INDIANS AND TO BE AVAILABLE FOR THE PAYMENT OF ANY CLAIM WHICH MAY HEREAFTER BE SUBMITTED AND ESTABLISHED BY THEM. THE FUNDS MAY BE DEPOSITED IN A LUMP SUM AND CARRIED UNDER A HEADING SUCH AS "UNCLAIMED INDIVIDUAL INDIAN MONEYS(SPECIAL FUND)," BUT THE SECRETARY OF THE TREASURY AND THIS OFFICE SHOULD BE FURNISHED A LIST OF THE INDIANS WHOSE FUNDS HAVE BEEN SO DISPOSED OF, SO THAT A SUPPLEMENTAL ACCOUNT AND RECORD MAY BE KEPT REFLECTING AT ALL TIMES THE AMOUNT DUE EACH INDIVIDUAL INDIAN.

THE SAME PRACTICE AS HERE INDICATED MAY BE FOLLOWED AT OTHER AGENCIES AND SCHOOLS HAVING OLD INACTIVE ACCOUNTS AS HERE INVOLVED, AND THE SAME SPECIAL FUND USED FOR THE PURPOSE. CARE SHOULD BE TAKEN, HOWEVER, IN THE DEPOSITING OF THE FUNDS TO INDICATE IN THE LIST OF INDIVIDUAL INDIANS WHOSE MONEYS ARE INVOLVED THE AGENCY OR SCHOOL TO WHICH THEY BELONGED, SO AS TO FACILITATE IDENTIFICATION IF AND WHEN CLAIMS FOR THE FUNDS ARE SUBMITTED FOR PAYMENT.