HC Deb 04 July 1899 vol 73 cc1409-10
CAPTAIN NORTON (Newington, W.)

I beg to ask the Under Secretary of State for War if he can state when the Committee appointed last year to consider the Civil Establishment of the War Office expects to have presented its final Report; what progress has already been made in the reorganisation of the Adju- tart - General's, Quartermaster-General's, and Financial Secretary's Departments; and whether the Secretary of State will, without waiting for the final Report of the Committee, cause the redundant first division clerks and supplementary clerks who have been superseded to be placed on retired pay.


I am unable to state when the Committee will be able to present its final Report. The inquiry, as far as it affects the Departments of the Adjutant - General, the Quarter-Master General, and the other high military officials, has only just begun. The Secretary of State is not prepared to anticipate the Report of the Committee.


I beg to ask the Financial Secretary to the War Office whether the Committee appointed to consider the Civilian Department of the War Office has yet agreed on its Report; and whether this Report will be laid upon the Table of the House before the War Office Vote is taken.


As I stated in reply to the hon. Member for South Donegal a few days ago, the inquiry into the Civil Establishment of the War Office, though it has made considerable progress, is yet incomplete. It is impossible to say whether any Report will be made to the Secretary of State before the War Office Vote is taken, hut, even if it were, it is not customary to lay upon the Table of the House Departmental Reports of this kind, and no assurance can be given that this rule will be departed from in this instance.