Press enter after choosing selection

Civil Service Report

Civil Service Report image
Parent Issue
Public Domain
OCR Text

Washington, Feb. 9. - The thirteenth annual report of the civil service commission, covering the past fiscal year, has been submitted to the president. It revirus the growth of the government's civil service, the efforts of the commisjhou to eradicate partisanship in federal offices, and important civil service refurms and extensions contemplated. During the year the commission conducted investlgations into charges of politica! assessments, political or religious discriminations, illegal appointments and remováis, and alleged frauds and unfairness in connection with examinations and appointments. In a number of cases of charges of political assessnients it was found that there had been no technieal yiolations of the law. The promulgation of the law on this subject and the commission's warning to employés during the campalgn that they eould not be forced to contrlbute ■ to political funds, the report says, had a most salutary effect. Hemovala Duriiig Four YearH. During the last four years the remováis from competitive positions in the classified departmental service at "Washington have been less than 2 per cent. for all causes, not including such remováis as resulted from necessary reductions in the force. In the unclassified and excepted service at Washington the remováis are believed to have aggregated in the last four years at least 50 per cent. The conclusión drawn is that either the persons brought in through examination are far more efficiënt than the others, or the remováis from the unclassifled positions have been made for other causes than the good of the service. The total approximate number of positions in the civil branch of the government is 178,717. Of these 87,107 are in the classified service and 91,610 unclassified. Of those not yet classified 66,725 are postmasters of the fourth class. Of those remaining in the classifiable, but unclassified, group many will be transferred to the classified service by the action of the rules. The aggregate compensation paid in the executive civil service of the United States during the last fiscal year was, approximately, $100,000,000. Feature Wliich Has Disappeared. The report says that the temptation to increase the number of employés or to retain employés when there is no .work for them to do, which was such a characteristic feature of the "spoils" eystem, has entirely disappeared under the new civil service system. The pressure for office having been removed, decreases of forcé have been made from time to time in the classified service of the departments during the last four years, as the work was completed, becausc there was no object in keeping unemployed persons on the payrolls. As to tenure of office the report says: "Our administrative system now presents the anomaly of flüing certain inferior positions by the test of merit and changing every four years the higher positions, like collectors of customs and Internal revenue, postmasters and chiefs of bureaus, in whtch the largest capacity and longest experience are required, and thus frequently subjecting the subordinates to inexperienced and incompetent superiors - to the demoralization of the public service." The gradual increase in the number of presidential offices, it is asserted, is bound to forcé a change in the method of filling them. There are now nearly 10,000 persons in the public service commissioned by the president, and this number is growing every year. Phytíical Impossibility. At this rate of increase, says the report, in a few years it wiU be a physical impossibility for the president and cabinet officers to examine the papers and h?ar arguments and eomplaints relating to the iarge number of persons to be commissioned, and the repeal of the four years' tenure laws will be absolutely neoessary. The commission is of the opinión that the fourth-class postoffices may be Included in the classification by executive order. When these extensions of the classifieation have been made and the four years' tenure of office acts are repealed and regulations are in successful operation in all the departments requiring promotions to be based on the efficiency of employés, the reforms in executive civil service, it is said, will be practicallycomplete. In reviewing the growth of the civil service the report says that under President Arthur there was a growth of 1,64!) classified places, making a total of 15,000 at the close of his administratlon; 7,000 added by President Cleveland during his first administration, and contemporaneous increase of about 4,500 places by natural growth: 8,000 additions by President Harrison by executive order, and a natural growth of nearly 7,000 places at the same time. and at present there are over 87.000.


Ann Arbor Argus
Old News