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Thursday, 1 July 1926

Senator ELLIOTT (Victoria) .- I move -

That the provisos, sub-clause 1, be left out.

Honorable senators will remember that, when this bill was previously before the committee, I moved an amendment to insert these provisos for the purpose of removing certain hardships to which I had called attention. I explained at the time that my amendment had been hurriedly prepared, and that it might need alteration. Since then I have had an opportunity of reading the remarks of Senator Crawford, and I quite agree with his statement that the amendment in the form in which I submitted it was open to criticism. Consequently, I consulted the Parliamentary Draftsman, and he is satisfied that the new clause 4 a, which I propose to have inserted in lieu of the provisos to sub-clause 1 will express the intention of the provisos in a better form. As a matter of fact, my amendment had a scope which was much wider than I intended. For example, it would have exempted absentees with business interests in Australia if they had served in any of the allied forces, or persons that became partners in a business during the progress of the war. The latter difficulty has been overcome by using the words " before the commencement of or during the war."

Otherwise, the proposed new clause does not differ materially from the provisos to clause 4 previously inserted by the committee.

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