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Friday, 23 October 1931

Mr SCULLIN (Yarra) (Prime Minis ter) .- I move-

That the House at its rising adjourn until Thursday next, at 3 p.m.

The reason for the motion is that the Wheat Bounty Bill is still being debated in another place, and will not be returned to this House to-day. From what I can learn, there is a possibility of an amendment being made which will require further negotiations with the bank. I do not wish to call honorable members to Canberra on Wednesday next and have nothing for them to do.

Mr Beasley -Will the right honorable gentleman let members know if the Wheat Bounty Bill will be ready for us on Thursday?

Mr SCULLIN - If the motion is carried, this House must meet on Thursday. I shall endeavour to advise honorable members in the event of there being nothing definite to transact on Thursday, so that they will not needlessly make the trip to Canberra. The Government desires to have the Wheat Bounty Bill placed on the statute-book without delay, in order that it may operate. Representations were made by the Government to the bank regarding the limit in respect of which the proposed wheat bounty should apply. The principle underlying the bill is sound. Should the price of wheat continue to rise, there may be no need for the bounty, but it is not anticipated that' it will rise to that extent. The Government made representations to the bank with a view to easing the work of administration and lightening the conditions ; but the bank would not agree. Later the Government urged that the maximum should be raised to 3s. 6d. a bushel. I do not say that the Senate will carry the amendment which I have indicated ; but, should it do so, the Government will require a little more time to carry on negotiations, and, therefore, I have moved that the House meet, not onWednesday, but on Thursday. If, in the meantime, there should be anything definite to tell honorable members, they will be advised of it.

Mr Fenton - On what day next week will the Senate meet?

Mr SCULLIN - The intention is that it shall meet on Tuesday.

Mr Hughes - Is it proposed to deal with any other business when we reassemble?


Question resolved in the affirmative.

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