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Friday, 10 December 1965

Mr FAIRBAIRN (FARRER, NEW SOUTH WALES) (Minister for National Development) - The search for underground water in Australia is carried out by the States, and in the Northern Territory, of course, by the Department of Territories. When the Water Resources Council was formed recently an approach was made to the Commonwealth Government for additional funds both for the search for underground water and also for mapping the flow of surface water. As a result of this approach the Commonwealth set aside an amount of money in its last Budget for this purpose. The States had previously been spending about £500,000 a year between them. The Commonwealth made an offer of £2 for £1 for any increased expenditure by the States, up to a maximum Commonwealth expenditure of £250,000. This means that there will be an increase of about 75 per cent, in the total expenditure on the search for underground water in Australia.

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