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Tuesday, 21 August 1973
Page: 188


Mr Garland asked the Prime Minister, upon notice:

(1   ) Can he say whether the new Government's restructuring of the arts results in a larger number of committees and members of committees than exists in the United Kingdom which disburses a far greater sum. (2 )Is it a fact that the activities of the Australian Council for the Arts and its Boards, which meet on a regular basis, will result in fares and accommodation alone amounting to $500,000 in a full year.

(3)   Have delays occurred in disbursing to the arts moneys already allocated because of the inability of the Boards to conduct the day to day business of the old Australian Council for the Arts.

(4)   Is it a fact that the Council and the Boards are unwieldy bodies, with 24 members on the Council and 1 1 to 13 members on each Board.

(   5 ) How many staff are there, and what is the estimated cost of the staffing required to service the Council and the Boards. (6)Is it contemplated that the new arts structure will spend $2m in a full year on the salaries of professional administrators.


Mr Whitlam -The answer to the honourable member's question is as follows:

(1)   The Government's restructuring of the arts has not resulted in a larger number of committees or members of committees than exists in the United Kingdom.

(2   ) Until the final structure of the Australian Council for the Arts has been determined and the Council is fully operational it is not possible to state what these costs will be in a full year.

(3)   No.

(4)   I consider that these numbers are not unwieldy if account is to be taken of a wide range of views.

(5)   and (6) The staff of the Council and Boards is at present sixty. The numbers and cost cannot be determined until the final structure of the Council has been settled and the organisation is fully operational. The prime consideration will be to ensure that it is adequate to meet efficiently the demands of the activities it will be called upon to carry out.







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