§ Mr. GINNELL
asked the names of recipients of political pensions in the last completed financial year; the amount paid to each, and the total; the amount of Income Tax paid by each; whether the pension was included in the income on which the tax was paid; the position and the time occupied in respect of which the pension was paid; the total amount of salary, if any, paid to the person while in that position; whether all occupants of that position are given pensions; and the official record of any special service justifying the pension in the particular case?
§ Mr. HOBHOUSE:
I may perhaps refer the hon. Member to the reply which I gave to the hon. Member for Stirlingshire on 25th May, 1908 (Parliamentary Debates, Vol. 189, p. 731), and to the Political Offices (Pensions) Return (House of Commons 362 of 1904) which will give him most of the information he desires. As no changes took place in 1908-9 the list I gave on 25th May, 1908, remained correct as on 31st March, 1909. The pensions are assessed to Income Tax in ordinary course, but particulars of Income Tax payments by the recipients, either in respect of the pensions or of other income, cannot be given, in view of the provisions of the Income Tax Acts as to the disclosure of information obtained in the course of the administration of these Acts. If the hon. Member will refer to the Act 32 and 33 Vict., c. 60, under which these pensions are granted, he will see that the answer to his last question but one is in the negative, and that as regards his last question no special service is required to justify the grant beyond the occupancy of a qualifying office for a sufficient period.