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Thursday, 28 May 1942

Mr CHIFLEY (Macquarie) (Treasurer) (4:56 AM) . - I shall do so. When the special committee on taxation considered the revenues of the various States in the base years, it was found that Tasmania was at a disadvantage because its assessments had been issued late in one of those years. The matter was discussed when the Prime Minister (Mr. Curtin) and I met the Premiers in Melbourne, and it was agreed that consideration would have to be given to the position of Tasmania. After that, we received from the Government of Tasmania representations on this and other subjects. The question of the amount of compensation to be paid to Tasmania was referred to the Commonwealth Grants Commission, whose report on the subject has been tabled in the House. The commission recommended that the grant to Tasmania be £900,000, and this is the amount which it is proposed to pay, less £20,000, the estimated cost of collection. This confirms tho statement of the honorable member for Denison (Mr. Beck), when he asserted that it was erroneous to suggest that Tasmania's support had been bought by the Government. In the case of Western Australia, the estimated cost of collection was put down at £54,000. However, the Government of Western Australia pointed out that it had never previously been debited with more than £30,000 for the cost of collecting income tax. Therefore, this matter has been adjusted, and the amount of compensation which it is proposed to pay to Western Australia has been increased by £24,000.

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