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Wednesday, 6 May 1942

Senator ASHLEY (New South Wales) (Postmaster-General and Minister for Information) . - 'Certain penalties are provided in later clauses in respect of infringement of regulations; and it is desirable that independent committees should report on such misdemeanours. Under the bill the commercial stations are subject to the same provisions in this respect as the Australian Broadcasting Commission. I do not think that Senator Spicer would suggest that advisory committees appointed by the commission should adjudicate upon claims, or alleged misdemeanours, on the part of commercial stations. The appointment of these committees will not preclude the commission retaining its present advisory committees such as the " talks " committees. It is proposed that these committees shall consist of seven representatives consisting of a representative of the commission, a representative of the Australian Federation of Commercial Broadcasting Stations, a representative of the PostmasterGeneral's Department, and four independent members.

Senator SPICER - Why not put that in the bill?

Senator ASHLEY - That will be the procedure. I give the assurance that representation on these committees will be along the lines that I have just indicated.

Senator ARNOLD(New South Wales) [9.44 J. - I take it that these committees will deal with adult education over the air. The report of the Joint Committee on Broadcasting referred to this important subject in a number of places ; and 1 had hoped that the Government would have %een more specific in dealing with the matter in this measure. I expected that a definite direction would he given to the commission to provide for adult education over the air. Has the PostmasterGeneral any objection to making it mandatory upon the commission to conduct adult education programmes?

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