§ Mr. ALDEN
asked the Secretary to the Treasury what is the reason that in the promotions of assistant clerks in the Customs Statistical Office no attention is paid to seniority; what is the practice of outdoor assistants, port clerks, and assistant clerks in the Tea Accounts Office, how are the superior positions in the Statistical Office filled; what class of clerks performed the extra duties in the Statistical Office necessitated by the tax levied on corn and export coal; and is such work of the same high type performed outside the office?
§ Mr. HOBHOUSE
Promotions of assistant clerks in the Statistical Office in their own line—i.e., to minor staff posts—are made with due regard to seniority, and the same course is followed in making promotions of assistance in the outdoor service, port clerks and assistant clerks in the Tea Accounts Office in their respective lines. But in selecting assistant clerks, whether in the Statistical Office or Tea Accounts Office, for special promotion to port clerkships—posts which are not in their own line—merit, and not seniority, 1630W is the governing factor. Such promotions, are analogous to promotions to second division clerkships, for which assistant clerks are eligible under the Order in Council of 29th November, 1898, only when of special merit. The higher posts in the Statistical Office are filled by selection from any grade in the Department. The work of compiling statistics in connection with the Corn and Coal Duties was distributed amongst the various grades in the Statistical Office in the same way as other statistical work. It was not of a higher type than the other statistical work of the office. The part of such work which fell to the assistant clerks was inferior to the general duties of port clerks in the Service outside.