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Thursday, 22 October 1914

Senator MULLAN (Queensland) . - I wish to put a position to Senator Keating. Suppose that the Government of the day were asked to modify certain regulations made under this provision, and suppose that they were quite willing to concede a modification of the regulation, say, on the question of fees.

Senator Bakhap - A request from whom ?

Senator MULLAN - Suppose that a request of that kind were made to the Ministry of the day from the public, or from the Parliament.

Senator Bakhap - Would it be likely to come from any one but a member of the legal profession?

Senator MULLAN - Yes; a Chamber of Commerce, for instance, might request the Government to modify the regulation relating to fees. If the rule-making authority were in the hands of the Justices of the High Court, the Ministry might request a modification, but the High Court could turn down the request.

Senator Stewart - Parliament could afterwards review the rules.

Senator MULLAN - It could by. amending the Act, and taking the rulemaking power out of the hands of the Justices. If we once gave to the High Court the power to make regulations as against the Governor-General, that is to say, the Cabinet-

Senator Senior - It is not as against the Governor-General - it must be with the concurrence.

Senator MULLAN - The position would be that only the High Court could initiate the regulations, and we would have to sit down and wait for the Justices to do that.

Senator Keating - That has not been the experience in the States where the Justices have drawn the rules.

Senator MULLAN - I am with Senator de Largie in this matter. I do not want to increase unduly the powers of the High Court.

Senator Keating - This is not a question of powers at all.

Senator MULLAN - I believe in the Government of the day being responsible for the initiation of regulations under this, or any other measure.

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