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Wednesday, 29 June 1938


Mr BRENNAN (Batman) . - I do not intend to oppose the passage of the clause, but I should have liked more opportunity to ascertain the views of a. very important class which might well be described as the third party to this agreement. This clause presupposes an agreement between two governmental authorities, namely, the Commonwealth and the. States. There is a third party which may be described as the victim of these agreements, namely, the taxpayer, who appears not to have been consulted at all. I do not greatly like the idea of agreements between the Commonwealth and the States for an arbitrary method of collecting a tax due from individuals.


Mr Hawker - Hear, hear!


Mr BRENNAN - There is a specially good ground for further consideration of that aspect of the bill. I do not believe that the purport of the measure has been sufficiently widely circulated to be thoroughly understood by the persons concerned. The Treasurer has not shown that there has been any general demand or request by the public servants for this bill.


Mr Casey - The collections which this bill authorizes have been made for seven years.


Mr Curtin - The practice was initiated by the Scullin Government. It is a convenience to the taxpayers.


Mr BRENNAN - I concede that it would be generally acceptable. Most people find it embarrassing to be confronted with a large account, which one might have dealt with comfortably by comparatively small instalments. At all events, with the comment that I do not think that the Treasurer is doing full justice to the committee in forcing this bill through at the moment, I shall leave the matter. My leader, whose judgment is usually sound, accepts the bill, and so do I, although I should have preferred longer time to enable those people who are principally concerned as taxpayers to express their approval or disapproval of the measure.







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