§ THE EARL OF LEITRIM
My Lords, I rise to ask His Majesty's Government whether the clerks employed in the offices of Inland Revenue Surveyors of Taxes are permanent Civil servants, or whether such clerks, or any of them, and if so what proportion, are employed on agreements terminable at one week's notice; whether such clerks are engaged upon responsible and confidential duties in the examination of returns and accounts for the purposes of collection of Income and other Assessed Taxes; whether there is an intention of enlarging the staff; and whether, having regard to the confidential nature of the work done by such clerks. His Majesty's Government will issue regulations to secure that all members of the staff of Inland Revenue Surveyors of Taxes shall be permanent Civil servants.
My Lords, I have made inquiries at the Inland Revenue, and the answers to the noble Earl's Questions are as follow. Of the clerks employed in the offices of Surveyors of Taxes thirty per cent. are established Civil servants and seventy per cent. are engaged under agreements terminable at a week's notice. All the clerks are sworn to secrecy. Only the established clerks are engaged upon responsible and confidential duties, the work of the non-established 131 clerks being of a routine character. Then the noble Earl asks whether there is any intention of enlarging the staff. Of course, as the work grows heavier the staff has to be enlarged, and it may have to be again enlarged from time to time. In reply to the question whether, having regard to the confidential nature of the work done by such clerks, His Majesty's Government will issue regulations to secure that all members of the staff of Inland Revenue Surveyors of Taxes shall be permanent Civil servants, we are of opinion that, in view of the fact that the work of the unestablished clerks appears to be mainly—I think entirely—of a routine character, no need arises for the adoption of the course which the noble Earl suggests.
§ House adjourned at Five o'clock, till To-morrow, half-past Ten o'clock.