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Tuesday, 5 July 1904

Mr MAHON (COOLGARDIE, WESTERN AUSTRALIA) (Postmaster-General) - The answers to the honorable member's questions are as follow : - .

This is a matter . which only the Public Service Commissioner could deal with, and the questions should have been addressed to the Minister of Home Affairs. The answers furnished by the Commissioner are as follow : - 1. (a) The Post Office Act of South Australia under which Postal officials were allowed a commission on the. sale of stamps, was repealed by section 2 of the Commonwealth Post and Telegraph Act 1901 ; and the Crown Law officers have advised that, upon such repeal, the South Australian officers cease to have any claim to such commission. It is therefore not intended to allow any further payments on this account. The sale of stamps is part of the officers' regular duty, and the work has been included, in valuing the worth of each officer's . position.

(b)   The duties discharged by certain Postal officials for and on behalfof the Savings Bank Trustees are performed during ordinary office hours, for which the postmaster receives his salary. Postmasters in other States carry out the same duties as part of their ordinary work, and receive no extra payment for them. As the performance qf such work has been considered as a factor in the valuation of the' work of each office, the allowance formerly received by officers will in future bc paicl into the Commonwealth revenue.

2.   It is not considered that the policy indicated involves any contravention of section 84 of the Constitution..

3.   The Commonwealth revenue.

4.   The officers will receive full value for . the services they perform for the' Commonwealth, and uniformity of salaries for services performed will not be attainable throughout the Commonwealth if these allowances are continued. -

5.   No, where the work and. efficiency arc equal.

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