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Wednesday, 16 September 1936

Senator COLLINGS (Queensland) . - I agree with what the Leader of the Senate (Senator Pearce) has said as to the importance of keeping open the forestry school established at Canberra. On the authority of the Director of Forestry in Queensland, 1 can say definitely that the Queeusland Government will do its best to co-operate with the Commonwealth in carrying on this important work at Canberra.

Senator HARDY - That was not the attitude of Mr. Swain when he was Director of Forestry in Queensland.

Senator COLLINGS - Mr. Swain is now employed by the New South Wales Government. Possibly his transfer to New South Wales is responsible for the attitude of that State. The position which has arisen in connexion with the forestry school merely emphasizes the necessity for greater power being vested in the Commonwealth in order to prevent the overlapping of Commonwealth and State functions.

Senator Sir GEORGEPEARCE (Western Australia - Minister for External Affairs) [5.9]. - I have just been informed that the only opposition to the Commonwealth school of forestry at Canberra comes from the New South Wales and Victorian Forestry Commissions. The Melbourne University is sympathetic and is arranging this year to send two students from Victoria. Professor Ewart has strongly urged that the school should not bo closed without giving the States at least two years notice. South Australia, I understand, has offered to send two students this year, Western Australia is sending one., and Queensland has intimated that it will give every possible assistance to the Commonwealth in carrying on the school.

Senator Collings - Queensland will send two students this year.

Senator Payne - How many students could the school accommodate?

Senator Sir GEORGE PEARCE - I should say that it could take an unlimited number, but I think the normal number is about fourteen.

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