§ Mr. GODFREY COLLINS
asked the Secretary to the Treasury why Mr. Davey, employed at Greenock in His Majesty's Customs, is prohibited in his spare time from taking part in local school board work; is there a Departmental Regulation on this point; and does this Regulation apply equally to officers and men?
§ Mr. MONTAGU
In accordance with the decision of His Majesty's Government announced on 28th October, 1909, in this House by the Prime Minister, the Treasury issued a circular stating that in future it would rest with the head of each Department to determine whether, and, if so, upon what conditions an officer of his Department might become a candidate for, or serve on, any local council, subject to the provision that the duties involved in such candidature or service do not conflict with the personal performance of the officer's duties. In accordance with this instruction, the Board of Customs and Excise made an Order that their permission was to be sought in all such cases. Their permission is freely given in many cases, but it is their practice to refuse it in any case in which the meetings of the local body take place in the hours of the officer's official duty, and, so far as they know, permission has never been given in any such case. The meetings of the school board referred to in the question are held within the hours of Mr. Davey's official duties, and the Board therefore regretted that they were unable to accede to his application for permission to stand as a candidate.