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Thursday, 3 December 1914


Senator FINDLEY (Victoria) .- I do not intend to discuss the clause at length, but to say a word or two upon what Senator Guthrie has said. The honorable senator tells us that there is no ambiguity about the words used in the existing Act, and that, so far as his knowledge extends, it is a workable provision. It is proposed by this clause to substitute for the words "the owner of the ship at the time of loss," the words " the owner immediately prior to the time of the loss or abandonment of the ship." As a layman, I think that the amendment would open the door to all sorts of difficulties as to the exact meaning of the words proposed to be used. Senator Guthrie has pertinently asked whether " immediately prior to the time of the loss " means a month, a week, or a day before the loss.


Senator Stewart - The owner is the registered owner, I should say.

SenatorFINDLEY. - Yes, but the question is as to what is meant by the words " the owner immediately prior to the time of the loss or abandonment of the ship."


Senator Stewart -Would not "the owner at the time of the loss " be enough?


Senator FINDLEY - That is the wording of the present Act, but this clause proposed to substitute for that "the owner immediately prior to the loss or abandonment of the ship."


Senator Stewart - That is confusing.


Senator FINDLEY - That is why I have risen to ask the Minister if he can inform the Committee as to the necessity for the proposed amendment, and as to what period of time would be covered by the words " immediately prior to the time of the loss or abandonment of the ship."







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