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Wednesday, 27 April 1932

Mr LYONS (Wilmot) (Prime Minister and Treasurer) .- I shall bring under the notice of the Minister for Trade and Customs the matter raised by the honorable member for Riverina (Mr. Nock). I do not know whether anything can be done to help the producers in the direction indicated by him ; hut I am sure that the Minister will use his best efforts in their interests.

The Government recognizes the seriousness of the fire at the Greta coal mine, which has been referred to by the honorable member for Hunter (Mr. James) and the honorable member for Newcastle (Mr. Watkins). I am afraid that I cannot hold out much hope that the Commonwealth Government will intervene, because it is a matter solely for the State Government concerned. Similar events have occurred in the other States, and it has never before been suggested that the Commonwealth Government should intervene.

Mr James - On one occasion Tasmania received £5,000 from the Commonwealth.

Mr LYONS - That was a proposition quite different from this, and, in any case, I was not responsible for the action of the Federal Government, because at that time I was not a member of the Federal Parliament. If this mine is of such importance, and is likely to he of value to New South Wales, surely it should receive the attention of the State Government. In the circumstances, and in view of the amounts that we are paying on behalf of the Government of New South Wales to-day, wo can hardly be called upon to take up additional burdens on its behalf.

Question resolved in the affirmative.

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