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Thursday, 11 June 1970

Debate resumed from 4 June (vide page 2964), on motion by Mr Bury:

That the Bill be now reada second time.

Mr Bury - Mr Deputy Speaker, mayI have the indulgence ofthe House to raise a point of procedure on this legislation? Before the debate on this Bill is resumed I would like to suggest that it might suit the convenience of the House to have a general debate covering this Bill, the States Receipts Duty Bill (No. 1), the States Receipts Duty Bill (No. 2),the States Receipts Duly Bill (No. 3) and the States Grants (Receipts Duty) Bill, as they are related measures. Separate questions may be put on each of the Bills at the conclusion of the debate. I suggest, therefore, that the subject matter of the 5 Bills should be discussed in this debate.

Mr DEPUTY SPEAKER (Mr Lucock)Isit the wish of the House to have a debate covering the 5 measures?

Mr Stewart - The Opposition does not object to a cognate debate, but I rise now to appeal to the Government generally, if it is not thinking about the rest of us, at least to think about the honourable member for Melbourne Ports (Mr Crean) who, at about 2.50 a.m. started to speak on 2 Loan Bills and now is expected, at 3.13 a.m., to take over a topic that can engender and perhaps already has engendered a great deal of controversy. I think that is completely unfair to the honourable member for Melbourne Ports. I cannot see any reason for it at all. I think it is utterly stupid for the Parliament to be continuing at this time. The Clerk has just read a notice to the effect that these Bills will be declared urgent measures tomorrow. In that eventI ask the Treasurer (Mr Bury) and the Leader of the House (Mr Snedden) to let commonsense reign and to adjourn the House at this stage.

Mr Snedden -I understood that the honourable member for Melbourne Ports was prepared to continue.

Mr Crean - I would prefer not to. I thank my colleague, the honourable member for Lang, for his remarks.I asked the Leader of the House earlier how far he intended to go. He indicated that he hoped to get the States Receipts Duties (Administration) Bill launched. My colleague has pointed out - andI think it is fair - that I have just spoken on 2 Bills rather more quickly than I would have liked in other circumstances.It is a bit unfair that I, who am supposed to lead on this debate, should start off tonight if the rest of the debate is to take place tomorrow. I thought it would be tidy to leave this complete debate over until tomorrow. A number of very important principles are involved and I certainly want to take my full time on the Bill, which will mean another 45 minutes.

Mr Snedden - You are arguing against yourself.

Mr Crean - I think the other side is entitled to certain rights in this regard. As the honourable gentleman knows, this is a very important measure that can have portentous overtones in the next month or two. As rhe honourable member for Lang (Mr Stewart) said, the Government apparently intends to treat it as a matter of urgency tomorrow, which means, I presume,that a time limit will be imposed and that the guillotine procedure will be used. I simply suggest that we would all be better at 10 o'clock in the morning if we went home 45 minutes earlier tonight. We have just dealt with a Bill about workers' compensation. We have been pretty solid workers here for thelast 48 hours and I submit that it is not unreasonable to make this request.

Mr Snedden - Mr Deputy Speaker, I have been so impressed with the tiredness displayed by the honourable member for Melbourne Ports (Mr Crean) that I cannot help but respond to his plea, but I do need to say that the time I intended to allot tomorrow to the States Receipts Duty Bills will have to stand.

Mr Crean - I understand that. 1 will cut my remarks down accordingly tomorrow.

Mr Snedden - Very well. The honourable gentleman indicates to me that he realises that the time allotted under the urgency motion tomorrow will not be changed and that accordingly he will shorten his remarks. Can the honourable gentleman ask for leave to continue his remarks?

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