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Wednesday, 4 December 1935


Senator HARDY (New South Wales) . - The bill empowers the commission to pay arrears of rates, and debit the amount against the total amount owing. Why should not the Government, or the corn mission, endeavour to compromise regarding rates? It may be argued that the local government legislation of a majority of the States does not sanction compromises. But in New South Wales, and possibly in other States also, amendments of the Local Government Act are contemplated. It is proposed to give to. local governing bodies the right to compound rates in some instances as, for example, certain institutions and in cases of hardship. I suggest that the Commonwealth Government should approach the State governments which are contemplating the introduction of amending local government, legislation with a view to authorizing the War Service Homes Commission to arrange a compromise with the local governing bodies in regard to rates. Generally, the owner of a small home who is in financial difficulties allows his rates to fall into arrears almost immediately, and as the local councils do not usually press for payment, the rates sometimes amount to almost as much as the mortgage held by the commission. If it is possible in cases of hardship to arrange for a compromise, it should be possible to do so in other cases also.







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