HC Deb 07 July 1910 vol 18 cc1909-10W

asked the Secretary to the Treasury whether, as the result of the recent examination for valuerships in the General Valuation Office, Dublin, three gentlemen from England, without any previous acquaintance with Ireland or Irish social conditions, are to be added to the nine already appointed as a result of the present scheme of examination; whether the questions as to rating and valuation set at the last examination were such as could only be answered accurately by candidates with English experience, and that such questions were not applicable to the law and practice of valuation in Ireland; whether the clerical staff of the General Valuation Office, of which branch the present chief valuer and all the present senior valuers were members, is meantime in such a state of stagnation as regards promotion that no clerk has, for a period of over seventeen years, received any increase of salary other than his annual increment; what reason is assigned for ceasing to appoint clerks to the valuing staff in which, as is shown by their promotion to the highest positions, the former members of the clerical staff have achieved such success; and whether, under The Finance (1909–10) Act, 1910, the materials for the next valuation of Irish farms and licensed premises will be dealt with by officials having English or Irish experience?


The three successful candidates are, I believe, Englishmen. As to how far they understand Irish social conditions there is no information; but the basis of valuation in Ireland and in England is practically the same. I am informed that the questions were such as could be answered equally well by qualified surveyors whether trained in England or Ireland, the law and mode of valuation being the same in both countries. The statement as to promotion in the clerical staff is hardly correct. In four of the staff posts created in 1893 the limit of salary has since been increased: the salary of the chief clerk has also been increased, as has that of his deputy. Additional salary is also given to one clerk who acts as secretary to the Commissioner; and some four assistant clerks have been promoted to the second division. The reasons for the appointment of professional valuers to do valuation work have already been stated in the House in answer to questions by the hon. Member for Dublin North, on 21st March, 1910, and 19th April, 1910. The work under the Finance Act of 1910 will be dealt with by the best qualified men who can be procured on reasonable terms.

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