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matters or things respecting the lands of the United States, as shall be presented, or shall or may come in question, and be referred to them by the house ; and to report their opinion thereupon, together with such proposition for relief therein, as to them shall seem expedient.

It shall be the duty of the committee on the post office and post roads to take into consideration all such petitions and matters or things touching the post office and post roads, as shall be presented, or may come in question and be referred to them by the house; and to report their opinion thereupon, together with such propositions relative thereto, as to them shall seem expedient.

It shall be the duty of the committee for the district of Columbia to take into consideration all such petitions, matters, or things, touching the said district, as shall be presented, or shall come in question, and be referred to them by the house; and to report their opinion thereupon, together with such propositions relative thereto, as to them shall seem expedient.

It shall be the duty of the said committee on the judiciary to take into consideration all such petitions, and matters, or things, touching judicial proceedings, as shall be presented, or may come in question, and be referred to them by the house; and to report their opinion thereupon, together with such propositions relative thereto, as to them shall seem expedient.

It shall be the duty of the said committee on pensions and revolutionary claims to take into consideration all such petitions, and matters, or things, touching military pensions, and, also, claims and demands originating in the revolutionary war, or arising therefrom, as shall be presented, or shall or may come in question, and be referred to them by the house; and to report their opinion thereupon, together with such propositions for relief therein, as to them shall seem expedient.

It shall be the duty of the said committee on public expenditures to examine into the state of the several public departments, and particularly into laws making appropriations of monies, and to report whether the monies have been disbursed conformably with such laws; and, also, to report, from time to time, such provisions, and arrangements, as may be neeessary to add to the economy of their departments, and the accountability of their officers.

It shall be the duty of the said committee on private land claims to take into consideration all claims to land which may be referred to them, or shall or may come in question, and to report their opinion thereupon, together with such propositions for relief therein, as to them shall seem expedient.

It shall be the duty of the said committee of revisal and unfinished business to examine and report what Jaws have expired, or are near expiring, and require to be revived or further continued; also, to examine and report, from the journal of the last session, all such matters as were then depending and undetermined.

It shall be the duty of the said committee of accounts to superintend and control the expenditure of the contingent fund of the house of representatives, and to audit and settle all accounts which may be charged thereon; and also to audit the accounts of the members for their travel to and from the seat of government, and their attendance in the house.

It shall be the duty of the said committee on military affairs to take into consideration all subjects relating to the military establishment and public defence, which may be referred to them by the house, and to report their opinion thereupon; and also to report, from time to time, such measures as may contribute to economy and accountability in the said establishment.

It shall be the duty of the said committee on naval affairs to take into consideration all matters which concern the naval establishment, and which shall be referred to them by the house, and report their opinion thereupon; and also to report, from time to time, such measures as may contribute to economy and accountability in the said establishment.

It shall be the duty of the said committee on foreign affairs to take into consideration all matters which concern the relations of the United States with foreign nations, and which shall be referred to them by the house, and to report their opinion on the same.

54. Six additional standing committees shall be appointed at the commencement of the first session in each To consist of

three members

each.

congress, whose duties shall continue until the first session of the ensuing congress.

1. A committee on so much of the public accounts ^ and expenditures as relate to the department of state.

2. A committee on so much of the public accounts and expenditures as relate to the treasury department.

3. A committee on so much of the public accounts and expenditures as relate to the department of war.

4. A committee on so much of the public accounts and expenditures as relate to the department of the navy.

5. A committee on so much of the public accounts and expenditures as relate to the post office; and

6. A committee on so much of the public accounts and expenditures as relate to the public buildings.

It shall be the duty of the said committees to examine into the state of the accounts and expenditures respectively submitted to them, and to inquire and report particularly—

Whether the expenditures of the respective departments are justified by law:

Whether the claims from time to time satisfied and discharged by the respective departments are supported by sufficient vouchers, establishing their justness both as to their character and amount:

Whether such claims have been discharged out of funds appropriated therefor, and whether all monies have been disbursed in conformity with appropriation laws; and

Whether any, and what provisions are necessary to be adopted to provide more perfectly for the proper application of the public monies, and to secure the government from demands unjust in their character, or extravagant in their amount.

And it shall be, moreover, the duty of the said committees to report, from time to time, whether any, and what retrenchment can be made in the expenditures of the several departments without detriment to the public service: whether any, and what abuses at any time exist in the failure to enforce the payment of monies which may be due to the United States from public defaulters or others, and to report, from time to time, such provisions and arrangements as may be necessary to add to the economy of the several departments, and the accountability of their officers.

55. The several standing committees of the house shall have leave to report by bill or otherwise.

56. No committee shall sit during the sitting of the house without special leave.

57. The clerk of the house shall take an oath for the true and faithful discharge of the duties of his office, to the best of his knowledge and abilities, and shall be deemed to continue in office until another be appointed.

58. It shall be the duty of the clerk to make and cause to be printed and delivered to each member, at the commencement of every session of congress, a list of the reports which it is the duty of any officer or department of the government to make to congress ; referring to the act or resolution, and page of the volume of the laws or journal in which it may be contained; and placing under the name of each officer the list of reports required of him to be made, and the time when the report may be expected.

59. It shall be the duty of the clerk of the house, at the end of each session, to send a printed copy of the journals thereof to the executive, and to each branch of the legislature of every state.

60. All questions of order shall be noted by the clerk, with the decision, and put together at the end of the journal of every session.

61. The clerk shall take care that once a week all the books provided for the use of the house shall be placed in order, according to some fixed arrangement, and make report to the speaker of such books as are missing.

62. Whenever confidential communications are received from the president of the United States, the house shall be cleared of all persons except the members, clerk.

S2

sergeant-at-arms, and door-keeper, and so continue during the reading of such communications, and, (unless otherwise directed by the house,) during all debates and proceedings to be had thereon. And when the speaker, or any other member, shall inform the house that he has communications to make, which he conceives ought to be kept secret, the house shall, in like manner, be cleared till the communication be made; the house shall then determine whether the matter commuuicated requires secrecy or not, and take order accordingly.

63. The sergeant-at-arms and the door-keeper shall be sworn to keep the secrets of the house.

64. All questions relating to the priority of business to be acted on, shall be decided without debate.

Of Bills.

65. Every bill shall be introduced by motion for leave, or by an order of the house, on the report of the committee; and, in either case, a committee to prepare the same shall be appointed. In cases of a general nature, one day's notice at least shall be given of the motion to bring in a bill; and every such motion may be committed.

66. Every bill shall receive three several readings in the house previous to its passage; and all bills shall be despatched in order as they were introduced, unless where the house shall direct otherwise; but no bill shall be twice read on the same day, without special order of the house.

67. The first reading of a bill shall be for information, and, if opposition be made to it, the question shall be, "Shall this bill be rejected?" If no opposition be made, or if the question to reject be negatived, the bill shall go to its second reading without a question.

68. Upon the second reading of a bill, the speaker shall state it as ready for commitment or engrossment; and if committed, then a question shall be, whether to a select or standing committee, or to a committee of the whole house; if to a committee of the whole house, the house shall determine on what day. But if the bill be ordered to be engrossed, the house shall appoint the day when it shall be read the third time.

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