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Thursday, 11 November 1948

Mr SPENDER (Warringah) .- I direct attention to the Second Schedule to the Commonwealth and State Housing Agreement, which relates to the manner of ascertaining losses incurred by a State in or in connexion with the administration of housing projects. Paragraph 1 of the schedule reads -

As soon as practicable after the end of each financial year, the Treasurer of the State shall supply to the Treasurer of the Commonwealth a statement showing the amount of any lossesincurred by the State during the financial year in respect of its housing projects. The following provisions shall apply for the purpose of preparing any such statement.

I do not propose to go into the details, but the statement which is referred to in paragraph. 1 is divided into two parts, one of which is headed " Receipts " and the other " Payments ". The return should show all the revenues received in respect of a housing project, and all payments, so that the net balance may be indicated. If a State shows a loss, a certain obligation devolves upon the. Commonwealth. I understand that the Parliament has not been informed at any time of the contents of those returns from the States. I should like the Minister for Works and Housing (Mr. Lemmon) to inform me, first, whether the States have submitted the returns in accordance with the provisions of the Second Schedule to the Commonwealth and State Housing Agreement Act; secondly, what is the purport of those, statements, so that honorable members may know whether there have been profits or losses; and thirdly, whether the Minister has any objection to laying the statements on the table.

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