HL Deb 04 August 1919 vol 36 cc263-4

Order of the Day for the Second Reading read.


My Lords, the Bill to which I ask your Lordships to accord a Second Reading this afternoon is a one-clause Bill giving effect to a promise that was made in answer to questions in another place. In effect it means that any retired officer in receipt of a salary of over £400 a year who has hitherto had 10 per cent. deducted as a Civil Servant will in future be able to get both his civil salary and his pension in full, thus placing him on the same footing as men who are not officers. This is a reform which has been pressed for—if not here, at all events in another place—for some time. In consequence the Bill was drafted and introduced in the House of Commons, where it was supported, I understand, by all members of the various parties of the House and passed through with no opposition.

I dare say those of your Lordships who took an interest in politics a generation ago will remember that at that time there was a feeling in Parliament that when men were in receipt of pensions and had Civil Service employment it was not desirable that they should draw the full emoluments from the one as well as from the other. Under the Superannuation Act passed in 1887 the Treasury were empowered to make rules which acquired statutory force. One of the rules they made was that there should be, in the case which I have mentioned, a 10 per cent. deduction from the civil pay while the pension was paid in full. Of late years this has been considered a great hardship, and popular opinion, as your Lordships are aware, has changed considerably on the subject. In the case of men, for some time past no deductions have been made, and this Bill simply authorises the powers at the Treasury to cancel the effect of that rule. It was necessary to obtain statutory authority to do this, because the rules to which I refer acquired statutory force. I beg to move.

Moved, That the Bill be now read 2a.—(Lord Hylton.)

On Question, Bill read 2a and committed to a Committee of the Whole House.