§ MR. ASTELL
said, he would beg to ask Mr. Chancellor of the Exchequer, Whether there is any sufficient reason why the Messengers at Her Majesty's Customs-house receive a lower rate of salary than the Messengers at Somerset House and other Public Offices where similar duties are performed; and whether their case cannot be taken into consideration, with a view to a re-classification of the same, by an additional grant for the purpose of £275 per annum?
§ THE CHANCELLOR OF THE EXCHEQUER
Sir, I am not aware of any reason whatever for altering the salaries received by the Messengers of Her Majesty's Customs-house. I believe there is no difficulty in finding an adequate supply of persons able and willing to do the work at the present salaries, and if I should hear of any such difficulty from the Secretary to the Treasury, I have no doubt I could find him a considerable number of persons who would be very glad to be provided with such situations. As I find from the terms of the question of the hon. Member that the Messengers employed at Somerset House are paid at a higher rate than those employed at the Customs-house, I shall certainly make it my business to inquire of the Chairman of the Board of Inland Revenue whether there is any reason why the Somerset House Messengers should not have their salaries reduced so as to equalizethe two.