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Tuesday, 6 December 1927

Senator PAYNE (Tasmania) . - We are now dealing with the estimates for the whole of the Parliament, for which the amount asked is £85,160,as against an expenditure last year of £68,179, the increase this year being approximately 25 per cent. Though the item immediately under consideration is " The President," we have no other avenue by which we can obtain information in regard" to expenditure for the Parliament. I trust that the President will be able to explain the reason for the heavy increase in expenditure. There is a general belief throughout Australia that the Commonwealth is becoming too extravagant. I do not agree with that charge in general terms, because I am convinced that in certain circumstances expenditure of public money may, in reality, be an economy. I do not suggest that the increased expenditure in these Estimates for the Parliament implies extravagance; but I feel that we are entitled to an explanation from the President.

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