Note: Where available, the PDF/Word icon below is provided to view the complete and fully formatted document
 Download Current HansardDownload Current Hansard   

Previous Fragment    Next Fragment
Thursday, 26 February 1987
Page: 697

Senator COLSTON —I direct my question to the Minister for Education. It relates to the higher education administration charge. Can the Minister confirm the accuracy or otherwise of a report in today's Australian that she has not replied to letters from three of her State colleagues concerning the application of the higher education administration charge to State-funded tertiary education courses?

Senator RYAN —I can confirm that representations have been received from the New South Wales, South Australian and Victorian Ministers for education on this issue. But, contrary to the report in today's Australian, timely responses have been provided. I replied on 11 February this year to Mr Cavalier, and I discussed the issue with Mr Cathie at a meeting we had in Melbourne on 28 January. A telex from Mr Arnold from South Australia was received by me only last Friday, some six months after the announcement of the Government's decision on the charge. The central point at issue was dealt with by me in reply to a question from Senator Macklin last Friday. Honourable senators may recall that the essence of my answer was that there can be no differentiation between the administration costs incurred by institutions in enrolling State-funded students and those incurred in enrolling other students. In any event, since the implementation of the charge has enabled additional higher education places to be created in each State, it is the States that ultimately benefit. Of course, the charge has not added in any way to State charges.