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Thursday, 14 September 1911

Senator MILLEN (New South Wales) . - I am rather surprised that the. Minister should resist the suggestion I have thrown out. I have no doubt that the Commonwealth and State Governments could arrive at an amicable arrangement for the acquisition of these properties by the Commonwealth. But there is a much more serious matter involved, and that is whether it is desirable or not for this Parliament to sanction the acquisition by the Commonwealth of certain properties. I did not make the suggestion with a view to giving a guarantee to the State Governments that they would be fairly dealt with in this matter, but because I think Parliament should be the authority to sanction the acquisition of this property. The Minister, conscious of his own integrity and that of his colleagues, says, " Leave it to us. We shall do all that is necessary and proper." My answer to that is that I think this is a matter with which this Parliament should deal. The Government propose to make provision for the acquisition of property of this kind owned by pilot associations ; and I do not see why they should not make similar provision for property of this kind owned by the State Governments. If the Committee are not prepared to indorse my suggestion, I shall not propose a specific amendment.

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