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Thursday, 28 November 1935


Senator E B JOHNSTON (WESTERN AUSTRALIA) asked the Minister representing the Prime Minister; upon notice -

1.   Is it a fact that at the recent Loan Council meeting in Melbourne the Premier of Western Australia was requested to pass wheat legislation to supplement the Commonwealth's proposed legislation?

2.   Is it a fact that on the day Mr. Collier reached Perth (Tuesday, 19th November) from theLoan Council, Mr. Manning, AttorneyGeneral of New South Wales, stilted that " during the last few days the Premier (Mr. Stevens) has been in touch with the Commonwealth Government on the question whether this legislation should apply to the present harvest and in view of the discussion this Government has decided to inform the House that this act shall not be made applicable to this harvest and it is thought in consequence that the flour tax will be continued meanwhile " ?

3.   If so, has the Government of Western Australia been advised of the altered policy arrived at in the discussions between Mr. Stevensand the Commonwealth Government, and announced by Mr. Manning to the Legislative Council of New South Wales?

4.   If not, why not?

5.   Is the Government in a position to announce what assistance will now be given to-

(a)   the wheat industry generally, and

(b)   distressed wheat-growers in the partially drought-stricken districts of Australia, or otherwise for the coming harvest?


Senator Sir GEORGE PEARCE - The Prime Minister has supplied the following answers : -

1   . . A message was sent to the Premier to that effect.

2.   Yes. 3 and 4. The policy of the Commonwealth Government has not been altered.

5.   The hill brought down by the Government to give effect to its policy is being proceeded with, and will, it is hoped, be passed during the present session. The question of special assistance to wheat-growers in droughtstricken areas cannot be considered till the States have proceeded with their legislation in accordance with the decisions reached at the meeting of the Australian Agricultural Council in October, 1935.


Senator E B JOHNSTON asked the Minister representing the Minister for Commerce, upon notice -

How does the Minister reconcile the reply given to Senator . E. B. Johnston on the l5th instant,that " it is essential in order to provide some guarantee for the wheat-growers for the coming harvest, that the main wheat growing States shall at once introduce their legislation " and the balance of that reply, with the statement reported to have been made by Mr. Manning, the Attorney-General of New South Wales, on the 19th instant, that "during the last few days the Premier (Mr. Stevens) has been in touch with the Commonwealth Government on the question whether this legislation should apply to the present harvest, and in view of the discussion this Government has decided to inform the House that this act shall not be made applicable to this harvest and it is thought in consequence that the flour tax will be continued meanwhile"?







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