Imperial Treasury

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The Humble And Honest Assessors Of The Imperial Tax are the most powerful ministry within the Thousand Scales, with a single exception. That exception is the Imperial Treasury.

Every scrap of income taken in by the Imperial government must be handed over to the Treasury... fees, rents, tax revenues, fines, all pour into the Treasury's vaults. The Treasury then decides what revenues go back out and to where, establishing budgets for all the other departments of the Thousand Scales, the All-Seeing Eye, the Deliberative, (formerly) the Imperial Legions. Only the Imperial Magistracy has independent funds, drawn from the Empress' Own Purse, and as the Imperial Treasury sets the rate of revenue transfer from the Realm to the Empress they even have some control here. The Treasury is the beating heart of the Thousand Scales, keeping the whole complex organism functioning. For such vital duty, the Empress chose only those she trusted most, and they remain best paid of all the bureaucrats of the Realm to leave them no reason to seek wealth through corruption.

In these troubled times, the Imperial Treasurer Bal Keraz has emerged as the closest thing to the leader of the Thousand Scales there can be, and a major player in Realm politics. He has led the Treasury in several major moves since the Empress vanished, to preserve his position and the Thousand Scales itself, by sacrificing peripheral parts to save the core. The first of these sacrifices was the divestment of the Imperial Legions from the Thousand Scales into the care of the Great Houses. This spared the Treasury a massive expense, and staved off a crisis from the reduced tax rates passed through the Deliberative, but only temporarily. Officially, the Deliberative has no direct control over budgets within the Scales, but it CAN reduce tax rates and increase the stipend payments to the Great Houses and gifts to the Immaculate Order and various other institutions. To ensure that the Scales retains funds sufficient for its key departments (the Treasury itself and the tax Assessors) Keraz has chosen to cut off funding to other ministries deemed less vital.

Their control of the purse strings has also made the Treasury de facto masters of the All-Seeing Eye in the absence of the Empress, as Eye operations are funded by the Treasury. Bal Keraz is known to have made cuts to Eye funds for sole purpose of making clear WHO the Realm secret service ought answer to in the new world of the Empty Throne.

The Imperial Treasury maintains a number of vaults to hold the wealth of the Realm, but it does not have guaranteed access to these funds: all have their surroundings secured by elite units of Black Helms, with the vaults themselves guarded either by the Mountain Folk of the Jade Legion or by demons summoned by the Empress herself... demons who do not answer to the requests of bureaucrats approaching without Her express authorization.

The Treasury contains several sub-departments for management of various aspects of its responsibilities. Key examples are the Stargazing Abacus Desk, responsible for producing predictions on future costs and revenues, headed by vice-minister Ledaal Kes, the Scarlet Expenditures Desk responsible for distributing funding within the Imperial City and Scarlet Prefecture, headed by vice-minister Ragara Dendas, and the Central Crossings Desk headed by vice-minister Tepet Lera.

Head: Most Esteemed Minister of the Imperial Treasury, currently Bal Keraz, a Dragonblooded from one of the most powerful Patrician Clans.