HC Deb 26 January 1971 vol 810 cc100-1W
Mr. Arthur Lewis

asked the Minister for the Civil Service (1) whether he is aware that there have been rises of the number of civil servants of 985 in June, 1970, 660 in July, 1,575 in August, 510 in September, and 1,330 in October; when he expects to publish the November and December figures; why, in view of the Government's policy of reducing civil servants and reducing government expenditure these increases have taken place; what is the additional cost in salaries, officers, etc; and what action he is taking to reduce these figures to those before June, 1970;

(2) whether he is aware that since June, 1970, until October, 1970, the number of civil servants was increasing at the rate of 1,012 per month; in what fields these extra civil servants were being employed; on what average salary scales; and to what extent he estimates further increases on the passing of the Industrial Relations Bill;

(3) whether he is aware that between June, 1970, and October, 1970, the number of civil servants was increasing at the rate of 1,012 per month, and as the Government's policy is to reduce the Civil Service and cut Government expenditure, if he will issue a direction to all Ministerial Departments to stop this increase in new Civil Service appointments and to restore the position to that of June, 1970.

Mr. David Howell

The net increases referred to reflect for the most part increases in work load decided before June, 1970. Details, Department by Department, were given in answer to a Question from my hon. Friend the Member for Woking (Mr. Onslow) on 17th December, 1970. The additional staff cost is estimated at £215,000 per month on average. Figures covering the remaining period up to 1st January will be available at the end of the present month. The Government are currently taking steps to reduce the rate of growth of civil service numbers in the present year.

Manpower requirements in the periods up to 1st April, 1971, and 1st April, 1972, are under close scrutiny and will be announced in due course. Provisional estimates of the manpower implications of the Industrial Relations Bill are given in the Explanatory and Financial Memorandum to the Bill.—[Vol. 808, c. 451.]