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Thursday, 16 May 1957

Mr CLAREY (Bendigo) .- The action of the Government in refusing to accept the amendment will give rise to an anomalous position, and that, in my opinion, will be unfortunate. The relevant section of the act provides that a person who is fined has the right of appeal to the chief officer. He is able to state his case and a review of the penalty is made. So, the right of appeal is granted to those who are fined the sum of 10s., or less; but those who are fined an amount ranging from 10s. to £2 have no right of appeal. If the fine is greater than £2 there is again a right of appeal. That position creates a gap in which a certain range of fines is not subject to review through appeal, whilst fines below and above that range are subject to review. The Government's decision is entirely contrary to the policy it has expressed in legislation touching proceedings before the Commonwealth Arbitration Court, in which there is no restriction of the right of appeal. If my memory serves me correctly, at the time the Government introduced that legislation it was very firm about the basic right of appeal for people who believe that they have suffered an injustice.

I simply point out to the Minister that in other legislation that the Government has introduced it has insisted on the inclusion of the right of appeal; but in this bill the right of appeal is given in respect of penalties of up to 10s.. is withheld in respect of penalties ranging from 10s. Id. to £2, and is given in respect of penalties of £2 Os. Id. and upwards. That is a ridiculous and anomalous state of affairs, and I hope that the Minister will give further consideration to it.

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