HC Deb 20 July 1897 vol 51 cc560-1
MR. J. G. BUTCHER (York)

I beg to ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department (1) whether his attention has been called to the question of the pension of warders who were attached to the prisons at the time of the commencement of The Prisons Act, 1877; (2) whether, prior to the passing of that Act, such warders were in many cases entitled to receive from the local authorities a pension of two-thirds of the amount of their salary; (3) whether in consequence of the interpretation placed by the Treasury on the Prisons Act, 1877, such warders are now in many cases in receipt of pensions considerably less than they would have received from the local authorities if that Act had not passed; (4) whether such a result is in accordance with the provisions of The Prisons Act, 1877, which provides that the officers attached to the prisons at the time of the commencement of that Act should hold their offices by the same tenure and upon the like terms and conditions as if that Act had nut passed; and (5) whether Her Majesty's Government propose to remedy this state of affairs by legislation or otherwise?


; The answer to the first and third paragraphs of the Question is in the affirmative, and to the second that the warders were not entitled to a pension at the two-thirds rate, though in many cases the local authority, who had a discretion in the matter, actually gave pensions at that rate, The power of awarding pensions to (officers transferred under the Act of 1877 was intrusted to the Treasury, who held when the question came up for consideration that they had no power to award a higher rate of pension in respect of any service under Government than that allowed by the Superannuation Act, though they have consented to so much of the pension as was in respect of the years spent in the local service and was payable from local funds being calculated at the local rate, provided the local authority agreed. This decision has been uniformly acted upon by the Treasury for nearly 20 years, and I am not prepared to reopen the question.