MINUTES OF EVIDENCE.
59 7 5 n.
you had the right of appointing.
you would take care to select men upon whom you could rely?â€”Of
it ever occurred, since you held your present office, that the suggestions you have made as to appointments to fill vacant places have not been acquiesced hi?â€”It
And that appointments were made of person-, of whooe capabilities you had no opportunity whatever of judging ?â€”Yes.
experience in the AccountÂ¬ ant-General's office, first as Deputy, and then as PrinciÂ¬ pal, extends over a period in which there have been four different Chancellors in Ireland ?â€”Yes.
I conceive that as I am responsible, nothing can he more clear than that I should have the right to appoint and promote.
You have been yourself appointed by the Crown, and not by the Lord Chancellor ?â€”I
was apÂ¬ pointed by the Crown.
it appears that the AccountÂ¬ ant-General, the head of the office, is appointed by the Crown, and that his clerks are appointed by the Lord Chancellor ?â€”Yes;
in all cases the clerks have been appointed by the Lord Chancellor.
according to the present understanding of the rights of parties, the Lord ChanÂ¬ cellor might appoint a head clerk in the room of Mr.
Davis, if that gentleman resigned or died ?â€”Yes.
he might appoint a person as head clerk, even though the Accountant-General might not think that person competent for the office ?
What I suggest is, that I should have the right both of appointment and promotion in the office, except so far as the classes go, and that the promotion should go on as a matter of course in each class.
But that the promotion from one class to a higher should he a matter of selection from amongst the clerks immediately below that class in which the vacancy occurred ?â€”Yes;
I consider with a view to the efficiency of the office that the right of promotion from a lower class to a class immediately above it should vest in me, but that the promotion in each successive class should be by rotation.
In short, that, subject to this restriction, both the appointment and promoÂ¬ tion should be with the Accountant-General.
you not think that if the Aecountant-General had the power of selection, and also of promotion from class to cla^s, there ought to be some provision to insure that the power should not be capriciously exercised ?â€”Certainly.
I think that the appointment and promotion should be subject to the approbation of the Lord Chancellor.
Supposing you passed over the senior clerk of a junior class, and selected a junior in the same class for promotion to a higher class, should you not assign a reason for doing so ?â€”Yes.
I conceive that if the appointment and promotion were made with the approbation of the Lord Chancellor, he would inÂ¬ quire into each case, and exercise his discretion.
a view to a succession in your office, do you think there ought to be a limit as to the ages of persons entering it ?â€”I
do think there ought to be a limit of age as to first appointments; the limit should be from a certain age to a certain age.
What are the limits as to age which you would think desirable in reference to appointments in your office, considering the time it would probably take to succeed from a junior clerkship to be head of the office ?â€”From
seventeen to twenty-five years of age.
Have you considered since yesterday whether a small fee of sixpence upon each of the certificates,
which causes a great amount of labour in your office, AccouKi'AfcrT-and, a-, it appears to you, without any good result.
would form a reasonable ground of complaint upon
rrift"" the part of the public ; the fee being merely imposed Digby rilot to check unnecessary inquiries, and not with a view Starkey, Ksq.
to create a revenue by adding to the expense of the suitors?â€”Well,
judging from some conversation I have had with one or two eminent solicitors, I am inclined to think that such a fee would not be favourÂ¬ ably receh edâ€”certainly not by the solicitors.
Practically the additional expense to the suitÂ¬ ors would be only sixpence in each case ?â€”Only
But, as I understand you, the certificates applied for (many of which when completed are never given out, in consequence of no further inÂ¬ quiry about them), amount to many thousands in the course of the year ?â€”No
; I do not mean many thouÂ¬ sands in the course of a year, but wre have an accuÂ¬ mulation of thousands in the office.
Can you state from recollection about how many certificates in the course of a year are never called for after they have been made out at the request of parties ?â€”I
cannot; nor do I think I could easily ascertain it.
Do you think the making out of those certiÂ¬ ficates, which become unnecessary, and accumulate in the office, adds very materially to the duties of the clerks in your department ?â€”It
Can you give any estimate of the amount of labour expended upon the certificates, whether the labour of one clerk or more for any particular period ?
â€”I think it might make the difference of the work of one clerk in the year.
Do you mean in giving that answer, the making out of the whole of the certificates whether called for or not, or do you mean that the unnecessary work upon them would alone amount to the labour of a clerk for a year ?â€”I
mean that the labour of one clerk, it may be considered, is now fully occupied in making out all the certificates.
Can you form any estimate of the proportion of certificates which are made out, and which are not afterwards called for by the public ?
Is it one half?â€”
I really cannot make a correct estimate, but I should think less than one half.
you think a fee of sixpence would prevent those certificates being wantonly called for ?â€”Certainly.
the objection to a small fee of sixpence on the part of solicitors simply amounts to an objection against the imposition of any additional fee whatever?â€”I
Do you consider, if a fee should be imposed, sixpence would be too high, or would it be too low?
I conceive it would be a proper fee.
Since I was examined yesterday I have ascertained that in the report of the Commission of Inquiry upon which the Act of the 4th Geo.
was based, the grounds upon which they propose a salary of Â£700 a-year for the Irish Accountant-General are stated to be that the English Accountant-General had Â£1,200 a-year at the time.
I believe that at the time both the Irish and the English Accountant-General derived large emoluÂ¬ ments from fees in addition to then-salaries ?â€”PreÂ¬
vious to that the Irish Accountant-General certainly did, but he was restricted in consequence of that reÂ¬ port from receiving fees, except the one fee I spoke of yesterday.
Ceown and Hanaper Office.
Ralph Smith Cusack, Esq.,
are Clerk of the Crown and Hanaper?â€”Yes;
I was appointed in June last.
What is your salary?â€”Â£600
How many clerks have you under you?â€”
Two salaried clerksâ€”Mr.
O'Brien at Â£300 a-year,
French at Â£100 a-year.
Then there are scriÂ¬ venery clerks.
Do you consider that staff sufficient for your office ?â€”Yes,
I do; quite sufficient.
Walsh, the scrivenery clerk's fees are paid under the head of
Cro-wn and Hanapeb Office.
Ralph Smith Cusack, Esq.