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Friday, 18 September 1936

Senator J V MACDONALD (QUEENSLAND) . - I agree with Senator Duncan-Hughes that the procedure adopted in connexion with this bill is not the most desirable way to deal with important legislation. Although it is not a new departure, I hope that in future important financial matters of this nature will be discussed with the Estimates. I disagree, however, with the honorable senator's remark that honorable senators have not studied the bill. I invite the honorable senator to study my copy of the budget speech, with which this measure is closely allied ; if he does so, he will see that I have sufficient material for a lengthy discourse. I regret that the old-age pension has not been raised to £1 a week; but I realize that the Government is responsible for seeing that the national accounts are squared, and I congratulate it upon having raised the pension by1s. a week. Although the Government has not gone so far as the Opposition would desire, it has gone a long way, and I hope that the bill will receive a speedy passage in order that the benefits which it confers ou public servants and others may be enjoyed by them as early as possible.

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