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Tuesday, 26 July 1921


Senator CRAWFORD (Queensland) . - I am strongly opposed to the limitation which this amendment places upon the expenditure to be incurred by the proposed Tariff Board. As I have previously stated, the industrial and commercial activities of the Commonwealth are not confined to the city of Melbourne, or even to the whole of the State of Victoria, and I do not think a thorough investigation couid be made by any Board sitting in this city. If the total expenditure is to be limited to £3,000 it will not be possible for the Board to conduct investigations outside what may be termed the inner circle of States. It would not be practicable, for it to visit the more remote States of Western Australia and Queensland, and investigations which did not include the activities of those States could not be regarded as complete or satisfactory. If this narrow limitation is imposed the Board will completely fail in the purpose for which it is to be created, and it will not be in a position to advise Parliament on the very many matters upon which information is desired.


Senator E D MILLEN (NEW SOUTH WALES) - It it were to visit Perth the train fares of the members, a secretary and typist, would be £153 without any other expenditure.


Senator Wilson - That is a point to which I directed attention the other day.


Senator CRAWFORD - If the Board does its work on the limited amount suggested, it will be very inexpensive. . I prefer the matter to be left in the hands of the Minister for Trade and Customs, who will have to administer the measure when it becomes law. If the Board fails in its purpose the responsibility must rest upon this Chamber for refusing to provide sufficient funds to enable it to effectively carry on its work.







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