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Thursday, 15 April 1915

Senator PEARCE - The answers' are -

1.   The wireless station at King Island was dismantled on the advice of the Department's naval and military advisers.

2.   The action taken in this case is in accordance with the general instructions issued, for defence reasons, to dismantle all wireless stations not under official control.

In respect of 3 and 4., the PostmasterGeneral's Department has furnished the following replies: -

3.   That a proposal has already been placed before the residents for the erection of a station costing less than half the lowest price at which the original station was offered to the Department. This proposal is still open for acceptance by the residents.

4.   No.

Senator LONG - Arising out of the answer-

Senator Millen - I wish to ask your ruling, sir, and I trust it will be understood that it is not only on this particular question that I am raising the point. Our Standing Orders enable us to ask questions without notice at one stageof the proceedings. Having proceeded tothe business of the day, we are entitled to ask questions of which notice has been given, and I should like your ruling as to whether it is in order immediately to proceed to interrogate Ministers by questions of which no notice has been p-iven, on the excuse or with the justification that they arise out of the answers given. I submit that that practice, if allowed, would enable honorable senators to go on pounding Ministers with question after question of which no notice had been given, to the violation of the spirit, if not the letter, of our Standing Orders.

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