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Wednesday, 3 June 1942

Senator KEANE (Victoria) (Minister for Trade and Customs) .- I move -

That the bill be now read a second time.

The purpose of this bill is to provide £22,000,000 out of the Consolidated Revenue Fund for the payment of invalid and old-age pensions. It is similar to that periodically submitted to Parliament for the purpose of appropriating an amount from the Consolidated Revenue Fund for payment into a trust account to enable pensions to be paid at rates already approved by Parliament. The balance of the appropriation now remaining is sufficient to meet pension payments only to the middle of this month. Parliament is being asked to approve the appropriation of £22,000,000, which is approximately a year's expenditure. This figure compares with expenditure of £17,366,000 and £19,865,000 in 1940-41 and 1941-42 respectively. The amount now appropriated will not be withdrawn from revenue immediately. Revenue is only drawn upon for payment to the trust account as required to enable pension payments to be made as they become due. This measure has no relation whatever to the rates or conditions under which invalid and old-age pensions are paid. These have been v dealt with separately. This bill merely seeks the provision of funds for the purpose.

Question resolved in the affirmative.

Bill read a second time, and passed through its remaining stages without amendment or debate.

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