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Wednesday, 29 August 1906

Mr PAGE (Maranoa) .- The honorable member for Echuca seems to think that I am opposed to the establishment of a Commonwealth Agricultural Bureau, but in that he is entirely mistaken. I would vote for the proposal of the honorable and learned member for Bendigo to-morrow. What I am opposed to is any duplication of the work of Commonwealth or States Departments. I should like to see a Commonwealth Bureau established on the lines of that in the United States, and, no doubt, if its establishment were proposed by the Government, the proposal would be quickly assented to by the House.

Sir William Lyne - The consent of the States would be necessary first.

Mr PAGE - They will not move until we do so. It must be recognised that agriculture is the backbone of our prosperity, since all our wealth comes from the land. Therefore, in the interests of the community, we must adopt means for obtaining the bust expert knowledge, and provide for its dissemination. No one is more, in earnest in regard to this matter than I am.

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