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Wednesday, 29 April 1942

Mr MENZIES (KOOYONG, VICTORIA) - Earlier to-day I gave notice of my intention to move for the disallowance of Statutory Rules 1942, No. 146, covering National Security (Employment of Women) Regulations. It appears from the list of papers just presented (vide page 640) that, I was premature in giving my notice. I now ask leave to give notice of my motion again.

Mr Archie Cameron - I rise to order. It is time that the procedure concerning the disallowance of regulations was clarified. Will you, Mr. Speaker, be so good as to indicate the course that should be followed? As I see it, regulations become operative from the time they receive the signature of the Governor-General and appear in the Gazelle, but apparently the Government suits its own convenience in relation to motions for the disallowance of regulations. In some cases it is prepared to accept motions for the disallowance of regulations before the regulations have been tabled, and in other cases it is not prepared to accept such motions unless the regulations have been actually tabled. I had a personal experience in this matter which occurred while the right honorable member for Kooyong (Mr. Menzies) wa.« absent from Australia, which I shall discuss with him on another occasion. My request at the moment is that the procedure be clarified. I consider that assoon as a regulation has been published in the Gazette it should be competent for any ' honorable member to move in the House for its disallowance. I should like whatever authority deals with the matter to give some clear definition of our rights.

Mr Curtin - There is no difficulty for the Government in this matter, whatever may have been the practice of previous governments. Unfortunately, the tabling of regulations is done when the House assembles, and a large number of regulations is tabled when the Clerk intimates that " the following papers are tabled ". He did that to-day, subsequent to the right honorable member for Kooyong (Mr. Menzies) giving notice of his motion, hence the reason for the right honorable member now asking for leave to give notice of it afresh. As a matter of fact there is no regulation gazetted by this Government which, at this moment, has not been tabled. This is the first time in the history of this Parliament that that has been the case.

Leave granted.

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