THE Government has rejected a key recommendation of a working group on the future independent Legco Secretariat. The group had proposed allowing civil servants to serve the secretariat for a year before they were asked to decide whether to sever ties with the administration. But working group chairman and Legco president John Swaine said the Government objected to the idea because it wanted to have a ''clean break'' with Legco and preferred civil servants to decide before. From April 1, 1994, the Office of the Members of the Legislative Council and the Office of the Clerk to the Legislative Council will merge to form a new Legislative Council Secretariat, which will be directed by an independent Legislative Council Commission to be established by statute. The president said he expected all contract staff, totalling 74, to continue their service with the Secretariat. But he did not know how many of the 175 civil servants would opt for the new Secretariat. He said the remuneration package was reasonable and balanced the need to attract the right staff and the need for it to be publicly defensible. Chief Secretary Sir David Ford said in yesterday's Finance Committee meeting that the administration would consider extending the period of civil servants' secondment to the Secretariat if it had failed to lure enough staff. Mr Swaine said that an agreement had been reached with the administration on the organisation and staff remuneration package of the new body.