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Wednesday, 2 April 1941

Senator AMOUR (New South Wales) . - I am not a member of the Regulations and Ordinances Committee. However, with every other member of the Parliament I receive copies of regulations as they are issued. If a proposal that a committee of members of both Houses should be appointed to examine regulations is made sincerely, it must be intended that that committee should be enabled to do its job properly. No member of this Parliament will admit that such a committee can work effectively if it be able to sit only for one or two hours on a day when Parliament is in session. In such circumstances it could not do justice to itself. This committee is most important. It should be afforded every facility to meet in Canberra when Parliament is in recess, and the services of an experienced legal adviser should be' made available to it. The Minister should bring before the Government the advisability of providing travelling allowances to members. It is essential that all members of the committee individually should be given every opportunity to examine these regulations. It should not be accepted on the mere word of the chairman that everything is in order. I have heard much discussion in the House of Representatives regarding regulations and, consequently, I do not believe that everything is in order in respect of them. A committee of this kind is quite competent to deal with regulations. However, I am not so foolish as to believe that it could go thoroughly into every regulation if it be obliged to hold its meetings on a day when Parliament is sitting. I trust, therefore, that the matter will also be raised in the House of Representatives with the object of ensuring that the committee will function as it will be expected to function; otherwise, it will develop into a farce.

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