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Wednesday, 30 October 1912

Senator FINDLEY (Victoria) (Honorary Minister) . - Much of the opposition that has been shown towards the third reading of the Bill has come to me somewhat as a surprise. I can understand the attitude of Senator Symon, who does not want anything contained in the Bill in any circumstances. He believes in the old method. He cannot bring himself to believe that it would be an advantage, not merely to the commercial community, but to the various

Departments of the Commonwealth, to introduce any kind of machine for making stamp impressions, and, therefore, he desires the Bill to be withdrawn, and the old method of using adhesive stamps to be continued. I can understand that line of opposition; but I cannot understand the opposition of those who say that, because there is the possibility of fraud being committed through the use of these machines by private firms, therefore the Bill should not be passed. I want honorable senators to remember what the Bill contains. This discussion has been solely upon a machine which has been in use in New Zealand for some years, but it does not necessarily follow that that will be the machine approved of by the Postmaster-General. When this Bill becomes law, it is his intention to appoint a committee of experts to closely examine the different machines which are on the market to-day, for the convenience of the commercial community and Government Departments in the way of stamping' letters.

Senator Sir Josiah Symon - There is nothing in the Bill to that effect.

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