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Thursday, 15 July 1926

Senator Sir WILLIAM GLASGOW (Queensland) (Minister for Home and Territories) [8 .0] . - If the motion were agreed to,, the Advisory Council would, in addition to the present members, consist of two members elected by the- white population of the territory.. Sub-section 2 of. section 4 of the Advisory Council Ordinance reads -

The- council shall consist of the Government Secretary, the Treasurer, the Commissioner of Native Affairs, the Director of Public Health, and the' Director1 of Agriculture. ┬ęto 15th May, 1924, Senator- Grant moved that, immediate1 steps be taken by the Government to* provide for- the election, by the local- adult residents, of a committee) of nine of their number te. advise the Administrator on all; matters, affecting the territory. This* motion, was. opposed, because the adult white non-official population of the territory was small,, and it was. thought that an elective, advisory body was not justified. The white population, of the territory' consists, almost entirely of Government officers, and of employees of. the Expropriation. Board, who are. of quasi-official status. In the circumstances, an election could not, be expected to result, in other than persons of. official or quasi-official status, being elected. The Advisory Council as at present constituted, ensures that all matters, affecting the more important requirements of. the territory shall be dis.cussed by experts in such matters,, and the council can reasonably claim to be a. representative body. When further progress has been made in connexion with the disposal of expropriated properties,, it will be' opportune to consider the: question of adding elected representatives, to the council. As honorable senators, axe aware, ' the expropriated, properties are now being disposed of, and, until the sale is completed, the non-white official population of the territory is not likely to increase. In these circumstances, the Government cannot accept the motion.

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