Nover. 12th 1806
I stated in a memorandum sent during last year that a continuation of the mediterranean fund for three years including the current year without repealing the salt tax would enable us to pay the sum contemplated for Florida, without affecting the operations relative to the debt; and that at the end of that period vizt. 1 Jany. 1809, (at which time the 8 p %, foreign debt, and all other species of redeemable debt shall have been paid off) we might do without either the salt or mediteranean. The question as you now propose it would be to give up the salt duty immediately Keeping the mediteranean for 2 years longer. That will make a difference against the revenue of less than one million for the two years. I think that the revenue of this year has exceeded or will exceed the estimates by a sum nearly equal. Of that I will be more certain within a fortnight but not sooner. If it shall prove so there will be no objection to the proposal but the unsettled state of affairs with Spain. For if the message recommends an increase of the military establishment, of gun boats for the defence of New Orleans, or of any temporary expences for mounted militia &c., this must be taken into consideration in order to avoid the danger of inconsistency and the greater one of weakening ourselves if we think there is any apprehension of war.
I would wish to know what is the amount of expenses contempd. for all objects in addition to the usual establishments; by comparing it with our accounts of revenue, I will be able to prepare a correct statement agreeable for your consideration.
Respectfully Your obedt. Sevt.
DLC: Papers of Thomas Jefferson.