HC Deb 14 December 1993 vol 234 cc586-7W
Mr. Matthew Taylor

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what arrangements are made to ensure that special advisers to Ministers in his Department do not have access to the kind of information, and are not involved in the type of business, that would be likely to create suspicion of impropriety in relation to subsequent employment.

Mr. MacGregor

Special advisers in my Department are appointed following consultation with and approval from the Prime Minister and the Treasury. They have direct access to me and stand outside the departmental hierarchy.

Special advisers in my Department are members of the the civil service and have the same conditions of service and are subject to the same rules of conduct as other civil servants except that they are not subject to the business appointment rules, when they leave the Department. Their terms of appointment include the following: All civil servants owe duties of confidentiality and loyal service to the Crown. These require civil servants to exercise care in the use of official information which they acquire in the course of their official duties and to protect information which is held in confidence.

Their appointment letters also draw attention to the rules governing the use of official information and related activities and those governing participation in outside activities involving the use of official information or experience and the general principles of conduct to which all civil servants are expected to adhere at all times.

Mr. Matthew Taylor

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if he will list the names and job descriptions of each special ministerial adviser employed in his Department showing any particular outputs for which each adviser is responsible.

Mr. MacGregor

I currently employ two special advisers in the Department of Transport.

Mrs. E. F. Laing has been my special political adviser in this Department since 13 April 1992.

Sir Idris Pearce has been employed as a part-time special adviser on property matters concerned with British Railways privatisation since 16 June 1992.

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