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Wednesday, 8 November 1911

Senator McCOLL (Victoria) .- This is a proposal which requires a great deal of consideration. Under it, the Government propose to vest a Commonwealth officer - a State servant - with power to strike the name of any person off the roll if he has proof that such person has ceased to be qualified for enrolment. No indication is given of the nature of the proof that is required. Now, the striking of an elector's name off the roll is a very serious matter. Under the Victorian law, notice has to be sent to any person to whose name an objection has been taken. The Electoral

Officer for the district has then to insert in the newspapers a notice that he intends to omit this name from the roll, and to set out his reasons for so doing. Finally, a notice has to be sent to the Court, and in all cases, it is the police magistrate who decides whether or not an elector's name shall be expunged from the roll. Under the proposed new sub-clause, it is proposed to place this great power in the hands of a State official. In my judgment, the provision should be enlarged, and we should understand what is meant by it before' we are asked to agree to it. At a later stage, I intend to submit an amendment providing that notice must be forwarded to any person to whose name objection has been taken, before his name can be removed from the rolls.

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