HC Deb 30 April 1913 vol 52 cc1192-4
93. Mr. C. DUNCAN

asked the right hon. Gentleman the annual cost of the monthly supply of pocket journals which have to be kept by officers in the Customs branch of the Customs and Excise service; and whether, in view of the frequently expressed opinion of the service generally that these journals serve no good or useful purpose, he will cause them to be abolished?


The Board of Customs and Excise are considering whether the pocket journal system requires any modification. The annual cost of the journals is too small to affect the question.

94. Mr. C. DUNCAN

asked what were the respective amounts of overtime paid by merchants in Customs ports and Excise collections to the Board of Customs and Excise; and what were the amounts of overtime paid by the Board of Customs and Excise to the officers in the Customs branch and to the officers in the Excise branch, respectively, of the amalgamated service during the twelve weeks ended 22nd February, 1913?


The figures for which the hon. Member asks are not readily available and would in any case not be properly comparable, as the payments are on a different basis.


Is it not a fact that the amount of money received in payment for overtime is considerably more than that paid to the men who are working it?


I should like notice of that question.

95. Mr. C. DUNCAN

asked the right hon. Gentleman the compulsory age of retirement for officers of all grades in the Customs and Excise service, and when was the last examination held for the supervising grade; and whether, in order to ensure a healthy flow of promotion, he will take steps to treat officers of all grades alike in regard to the compulsory age of retirement?


The general age for retirement is sixty-one in the officer and surveyor grades and sixty-two in the controlling grade. No examination for promotion to the surveyor (the supervising) grade in the amalgamated service has yet been held, but it is expected that the first one will take place about the end of the present year. It is not at present proposed to reduce the retiring age in the controlling grade, and I may add that to do so would have very little effect on the flow of promotion.

96. Mr. C. DUNCAN

asked the right hon. Gentleman whether his attention has been called to the fact that certain officers of Customs and Excise were induced in November, 1910, by the Board to volunteer for the position of assistant and second officer, with an assured allowance of £10 per annum; that had they not volunteered they would have, in the ordinary course, been promoted to the grade of examining officer, second class, between December, 1910, and April, 1911; that in the readjustment of salaries in December, 1911, the £10 per annum allowance was deducted from the amount of their back pay; that until the beginning of 1912 they received only the rates of overtime and subsistence, and were granted only the leave pertaining to the assistant grade; and, seeing that these officers have, as a result of volunteering, been penalised, will he state what compensation will be granted them?


I must refer the hon. Member to my answer to his question of 20th May last on this subject.