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Wednesday, 28 October 1964

Senator HENTY (Tasmania) (Minister for Civil Aviation) . - I shall first deal with item 17 which relates to the last matter raised by Senator Cavanagh. The appropriation this year is £7,030. This item covers only those people who are outside the ambit of the Defence Forces Retirement Benefits Fund, lt covers expenditure for the payment of ex-gratia pensions to the widows of deceased servicemen in lieu of benefits under the Defence Forces Retirement Benefits Act. The increase is due to payments being made to the dependants of another deceased serviceman and to a revision of the amounts to bc paid. Senator Cavanagh referred to the increase of £6 million in the appropriation for Division No. 698. That is entirely duc to the increases in pay which were granted as a result of the new scale of pay recently determined for the Forces. Under Division No. 703. item 06, the honorable senator referred to a 16 per cent, increase in the cost of rations. That is due to the increased number of mcn for whom rations have to be provided.

Senator Cavanagh - What is the position in relation to item 11?

Senator HENTY - The Department anticipates that there will be special cases this year. That is why the increase has been provided. A special claim is anticipated and the extra appropriation is to cover that. Item 13 relates to hire of aircraft, vehicles and equipment. This item covers payment for hire of aircraft and other vehicles, particularly hire of aircraft for survey mapping purposes. It excludes hire of motor transport for movement to and from camps, which is a charge to item 01, Division No. 703. Owing to a more extensive programme for survey operations in 1964-65, it will be necessary to charter additional civil aircraft, which will increase expenditure on survey activities under this item. Expenditure on hire of aircraft and ships for major training exercises will rise substantially in 1964-65. duc to a greater range and diversity of training activities.

Proposed expenditure noted.

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