HC Deb 08 March 1916 vol 80 cc1545-7
30. Mr. RAFFAN

asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer whether, previous to inserting an advertisement in the "Builder" for 7th February for an assistant valuer in a Government office, any attempt was made to fill the position from the re trenched staff of the Valuation Department?


I am informed that the advertisement referred to a vacancy in the office of the Public Trustee, who is in communication with the Board of Inland Revenue with a view to ascertaining if the post can be filled as suggested by my hon. Friend.

31. Mr. RAFFAN

asked whether arrangements are in progress for releasing a further number of the members of the Land Valuation Office for military service with the benefit of the Treasury Regulations; if so, whether their positions are to be filled by former members of the Land Valuation Office since retrenched; and at what date such arrangement is to take effect?


The Commissioners of Inland Revenue are releasing for military service with the benefit of the Treasury Regulations further members of their permanent Valuation Staff and are re-engaging on a monthly engagement a certain number of former temporary valuers to act as substitutes.

48. Major NEWMAN

asked the Prime Minister whether he has been able to study the latest balance sheet of the Land Valuation Department; and whether the activities of the Department were withheld from the purview of the Retrenchment Committee?


I am fully aware of the position with regard to the Land Valuation Department. The Retrenchment Committee considered the administration of the Department and heard evidence on the subject from the Inland Revenue, who assured them that the staff had been reduced to the bare minimum necessary for the continuance of the work imposed by Statute. The question withheld from the purview of the Committee was that of the repeal of the Act itself; it was not considered desirable that a highly controversial political question of this nature should be raised at the present time.


Will there be any objection to this question being raised?


I suggest that it should not be raised at all during the War. As my hon. Friend knows, the Land Taxes raise very controversial questions, and it would be most undesirable to raise them now.


Is it not possible, without repealing the Statute, to stop all the activities of this Department, which are a waste of money?


No. If the Statute remains it is absolutely necessary that the work consequent upon the Statute should be carried out.