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Friday, 27 August 1920

Mr GROOM (Darling Downs) (Minister for Works and Railways) . - In order to meet the objection raised by the honorable member for Hunter (Mr. Charlton) I move -

That the following words be inserted after the word " proviso," line 3 : - " Provided that where in pursuance of this sub-section an award has continued in force after the expiration of the period specified in the award, any award made by the Court for the settlement of a new industrial dispute between the parties may, if the Court so orders, be made retrospective to a date not earlier than the date upon which the Court first had cognisance of that dispute."

I£r. BRENNAN (Batman) [12.42].- No doubt this amendment is a concession. One wonders what will be the effect in cases where there is no award, and which are apparently governed by the decision to which the Minister refers, in which cases it seems the award may be made retrospective to the date of the dispute. In the Gas Employees case, I think the decision was that the Court may make the award retrospective to the date of the dispute.

Mr Groom - To the date at which the dispute existed.

Mr BRENNAN - It seems to me that this may well give rise to a great deal of argument, being much more illdefined than the other date we are adopting.

Mr Groom - It must be anterior to the plaint.

Mr BRENNAN - It must be, if the date can be found.

Mr Groom - Like other questions of fact; it must be left to the Court.

Mr BRENNAN - It seems to me somewhat indefinite.

Amendment agreed to.

Amendment by Mr. Groom agreed to -

That the words " Provided that " be left out.

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