Following is a question by the Hon Mrs Regina Ip Lau Suk-yee and a reply by the Secretary for Constitutional and Mainland Affairs, Mr Raymond Tam, in the Legislative Council today (February 29):
Will the Government inform this Council:
(a) of the staff establishment (including the number of posts, ranks as well as the functions, remunerations and benefit levels of the various posts) and the total staffing expenditure of the Chief Executive's Office (CE's Office) at the time when the First Government of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region was established on July 1, 1997, as well as the respective details of the aforesaid items as at January 1, 2012;
(b) of the number of posts, which were vacant for a long time before June 2006, filled by CE's Office so far, as well as the functions, remunerations and benefit levels of those posts; in addition, the posts newly created, the posts upgraded, as well as their remunerations and benefit levels; and the reasons for creating or upgrading such posts; and
(c) the Government assesses and measures whether there is any significant improvement in the effectiveness of the Chief Executive in leading the work of the SAR Government after CE's Office upgraded certain posts and increased manpower?
My reply to Hon Mrs Regina Ip Lau Suk-yee's question is as follows:
(a) Regarding the staff establishment (including the number of posts, ranks and their duties, salaries and benefits) of the Chief Executive's Office (CEO) on July 1, 1997, please refer to Table 1. Details of the same on January 1, 2012 are set out in Table 2. The total salary cost in the 1997-98 financial year was $37.51 million (including the expenditure of Government House and the Political Adviser's Office from April 1, 1997 to March 31, 1998, but excluding the expenditure of the Chief Executive Office before the establishment of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region) and that in the 2011-12 financial year was $49.37 million.
(b) Posts that have been filled on leaving vacant for a long period of time before June 2006 and posts created, deleted and upgraded to a higher rank are detailed in Table 3.
(c) As shown in item (b) above and Table 3, posts were created or upgraded to a higher rank to meet CEO's operational needs, such as new tasks and increasing workload. The increased CEO manpower and resources have a positive impact on the effectiveness of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region Government led by the Chief Executive.
Ends/Wednesday, February 29, 2012