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Thursday, 11 April 1957

Mr Ward d asked the Minister representing the Minister for National Development upon notice -

What are the latest available figures of people seeking to purchase or rent homes, through (a) State Housing Commission, (b) co-operative or any other kind of building societies, (c) bank or insurance companies, and (d) the War Service Homes Division?

Mr Roberton - The Minister for National Development has furnished the following reply: -

(a)   The latest available numbers of outstanding applications for State Housing Authority hornet were -

New South Wales- 30,000 including both rental and purchase.

Victoria - 15,000 rental, 4,000 purchase.

Queensland - 10,362 rental, 1,474 purchase.

South Australia- 10,000 rental, 3,000 pur chase.

Western Australia - 8,370 including both rental and purchase.

Tasmania - 2,980 including both rental and purchase.

These figures relate to February-March ofthis year.

(b)   Co-operative building societies in New South Wales are believed to have about 25,000 names on their waiting lists and co-operative housing societies in Victoria about 10,000. Figures for building societies in other States are not available.

(c)   Figures are not available for banks and insurance companies.

(d)   Pending applications for war service homes assistance totalled 19,923 at 28th February, 1957

It is necessary to point out that the sum total of outstanding applications to different home finance institutions is not a satisfactory estimate of housing demand at any time because (a) duplicated applications between State Housing Authority schemes and the different home financing institutions referred to above undoubtedly inflate the figures quoted and (b) wastage always occurs from these lists from persons who have their housing need satisfied from other sources. War Service Homes Division's experience, for example has been that 40 per cent of pending applications arc later withdrawn or refused. The best available estimate of the deficiency of dwellings is that contained in the recently issued report of the Department of National Development which set the deficiency (based on certain clearly defined concepts) at 115,000 at 30th June, 1956.

Postal Charges in Papua and New Guinea.

Mr Ward d asked the Minister for Territories, upon notice -

1.   Has a system of placing a surcharge on parcels forwarded by post been introduced in the Territory of Papua and New Guinea?

2.   Does this charge vary according to the destination in the Territory to which the parcel is directed?

3.   Is the charge payable by the receiver?

4.   If the position is as stated, will he furnish details of the system and the reason for its introduction?

Mr Hasluck - The answers to the honorable member's questions are as follows: -

1.   The Postage, Telephone and Telegraph Regulations of Papua and New Guinea provide that a parcel, not being an airmail parcel, posted outside the Territory for delivery within the Territory to an address at a place to which mails are conveyed only by aircraft, may be delivered, but before delivery there shall be paid by or on behalf of the addressee, an aerial conveyance fee at a rate of 9d. for every 1 lb. weight or fraction thereof. 2 and 3. See answer to No. 1.

4.   The reason for this provision, which came into operation on 1st December, 1956, is to enable the Administration of the Territory to recover some of the costs actually incurred by the Administration in the aerial conveyance of such parcels from the nearest sea port in the Territory to the office of delivery. Before this amendment was made, parcels consigned from overseas to a destination in the Territory served only by air were conveyed by air from a coastal port to offices of destination at no additional cost. Advantage was taken of this by certain consignors and consignees who imported quantities of merchandise by parcels post pre-paid at surface rates of postage and had them delivered by air. The average cost to the Administration for carrying the parcels free was over11d. per lb.

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