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Wednesday, 4 August 1926

Senator PEARCE - On the 22nd July,

Senator Elliottasked the following questions :

1.   Is it a fact that, although there are hundreds of acres unoccupied in the Federal Capita] site, the commission will not at the present time sell a business site in or near the civic centre to a bona fide applicant?

2.   If such is the case, what is the reason for this policy.? 3.Is it a fact that, although the Commission allege that there is no demand for further land, purchasers at previous sales who have only paid one year's rent, and have not done anything to the land, are demanding a premium of from ?1,500 down to ?200 cash on their bargains ?

4.   If so, do the Government or the commission propose tostop this profiteering at the expense of the bona fide Bettlers by making further lands available in the near future?

5.   Is it a fact that the Commonwealth Bank has declined to accept a site offered to it, owing to the onerous building conditions attached, and, rather than accept such 'conditions, has purchased a site at auction at a high figure?

I am now able to supply the following answers to the honorable senator's questions: - 1 and 2. Forty-six business sites near the civic centre have already been made available by the Federal Capital Commission. The commission considers that these, in addition to the business sites in other subdivisions, adequately meet the present business requirements of the Capital. The commission proposes to submit additional business sites for sale at an early date. It is considered that the sale of isolated business sites would be inadvisable from an architectural point of view.

3.   Neither the Government nor the Commission is in a position to answer this question.

4.   See reply to questions 1 and 2.

5.   No sitehas been offered to, or declined by, the Commonwealth Bank. The bank purchased a site in open competition at the recent sale under building conditions common to all.

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