HC Deb 24 March 1964 vol 692 c62W
Mr. A. Lewis

asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer (1) why the numbers of civil servants have risen in the current year by 14,764 to a total of 418,045 at a cost of £412,524,000; why he is increasing the numbers by a further 4,758 at an additional cost of £11,368 during next year; and what action he proposes to take to reduce this expenditure.

(2) what is the policy of Her Majesty's Government in regard to the number of civil servants and the cost of administering the Civil Service.

Mr. Green

The staff numbers quoted by the hon. Member relate to 1962–63 and 1963–64. The increase expected next year is about 1,250. Our policy is that staff numbers should be no more, nor less, than is necessary for the efficient discharge or the duties laid upon the Government by Parliament. There are effective arrangements for securing staff economies whenever work declines, and Departments are active in applying modern working methods. But over a wide field of activity the Government's responsibilities have been increasing, and this is inevitably reflected in staff numbers.

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