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Julian Hall's daughter is appointed assistant to the Premier

The daughter of late MP and prominent attorney Julian Hall has been appointed as assistant to the Premier.

Liana Hall, 25, a lawyer, started the $75,000 job on Monday, according to the Premier's press secretary.

Cabinet Secretary Marc Telemaque explained to The Royal Gazette at the start of last month that the job of personal assistant to Premier Ewart Brown was not a civil service position, though it is paid for from the public purse.

"This post is governed by the Premier and Opposition Leader's Personal Staffs Act 1983," he said.

The legislation allows the Premier and Opposition leader to "appoint such number of persons as he deems fit to constitute his personal staff".

It says that salaries for personal staff "shall not exceed the amount provided for the purpose" by Parliament.

On January 5, Mr. Telemaque said Ms Hall had not been appointed as PA. Asked again on Monday, he told us: "The post to which you refer is not filled."

Dr. Brown's press secretary confirmed the appointment the next day: "I understand you asked about Ms Hall. She is working as assistant to the Premier. She began on Monday."

Mr. Telemaque said yesterday that Ms Hall's job was full-time with a salary of $75,221 per year under pay scale (PS) 25 for a public officer.

Opposition leader Kim Swan employs Gina Spence-Farmer as his part-time assistant under the same law. Mr. Swan said last night that she was on PS18, which equates to an annual salary of $59,442.

"Both the Opposition leader and the Premier have assistants as provided under the Act," said Mr. Swan. "These posts are unique as they are associated with the tenure of the current Premier and Opposition leader — hence there is no security of tenure for the post holder.

"It concerns me to learn that there is a disparity in the salary grades between the Opposition leader's office and the Office of Premier (PS 25). This difference is considerable and is a matter of concern."