74. Miss WARD
asked the Secretary for Mines whether any decision has been reached regarding the position of the chairman and members of the Coal Mines Reorganisation Commission, in view of the Government's decision to postpone consideration of the Coal Mines Bill until the autumn?
§ The SECRETARY for MINES (Captain Crookshank)
Sir Ernest Gowers has been informed that the Government attach importance to his continuing to remain available as chairman of the Reorganisation Commission so that, on the passing of the Coal Mines Bill, the work of the commission may be proceeded with effectively. In the meantime it has been arranged that the services of the chairman, in so far as they are not required in connection with the work of the commission under present conditions, shall be made available for such special duties, in relation, for example, to Defence problems, as the Prime Minister may think fit. As regards the position of the other members of the commission, I am not yet in a position to make a statement.
§ Mr. SHINWELL
How does the hon. and gallant Gentleman know that the Coal Mines Bill will be passed?
§ Mr. SHINWELL
Did the hon. and gallant Gentleman not say that the services of Sir Ernest Gowers were being retained in this capacity in contemplation of the passing of the Coal Mines Bill, and how does the hon. and gallant Gentleman know that the Bill will be passed?
§ Miss WILKINSON
Is it proposed that the chairman shall continue on full salary during this period, or is he going to be paid half time for half work?
§ Captain CROOKSHANK
He will be paid full salary because he is the full-time chairman of the commission. If at present there is not full work as chairman of the commission, his services will be used whenever suitable by His Majesty's Government.