File 639.003/33.


No. 80.]

Sir: I have the honor to inclose you herewith copies of the Official Gazette,1 with the decree of the municipality of Santo Domingo abolishing the municipal surtax on several articles of import.

It appeared to me that, as Congress passed a resolution authorizing the municipality to establish this surtax, Congress might have to approve any change therein. I accordingly interviewed Mr. Velázquez, and he stated to me that during the last session of Congress the municipality of Santo Domingo petitioned that body for authority to make some changes in the municipal surtax. Congress decided that any action by it on this subject was unnecessary, but with the understanding that any changes must be a revision downward, that is, a reduction, but that there must be no change that would operate to increase taxation.

In this connection I will state that Mr. Velázquez has promised to look into the matter of the apparently discriminating tax against American soap, and the ayuntamiento may take the same action in this matter as was done with the articles mentioned in the published decree.

I have, etc.,

William W. Russell.
  1. Not printed.