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Wednesday, 19 May 1965

Senator CAVANAGH (South Australia) . - The attitudes adopted by honorable senators on this occasion should be considered in relation to those taken during the debate on the Housing Loans Insurance Bill. On that occasion the Opposition supported an amendment moved by Senator Wright and the Bill was referred back to the House of Representatives. When the Bill was returned to the Senate, the Opposition, with the support of Senator Wood, maintained a consistent attitude, but the measure was discussed, I think, in the absence of Senator Wright on that occasion. The Opposition must consider now its attitude to what appears to be an amendment very similar in principle to that moved by Senator Wright during the debate on the Housing Loans Insurance Bill. Is it the same in principle? That is what concerns the Opposition.

During the debate on the Housing Loans Insurance Bill much attention was devoted to the clause relating to the class of person to be classified as an approved lender. The

Opposition held the view that Parliament should have the right to decide on the class of persons to be included in the category of approved lenders. I take it that on this occasion the point of contention is the method of determining the owner of hens. The legislation before us contains the provision that the owner should be determined by an instrument in writing and not by regulation. I am not sure that a regulation could appropriately apply in this instance because it appears to me that the question would have to be decided by an inspector. For the purposes of this legislation, someone has to determine who is the owner. It seems that an inspector would need to visit the farm and say: "I am determining that you are the owner ". Irrespective of the vigilance of Parliament through the regulations, 1 am not certain that this is an instance to which the regulations may be applied.

Our difficulty in discussing the provisions of the Housing Loans Insurance Bill lay in the method of deciding on the approved class of lender. It seemed to the Opposition that the regulations could properly be applied to solve that difficulty. But in the matter we are discussing, it does not seem appropriate that the owner of a poultry farm may be determined by regulation. Is there to be a regulation which states that the foremen of poultry farms are to be accepted as the owners? [t could well be that difficulty would arise in relation to a poultry farm conducted by a family. Would the mother or one of the daughters or someone living in the nearest house be declared the owner?

The problem is one which normally would be solved upon inspection. An inspector has to decide certain things on the spot and the problem is not strictly comparable with the difficulty of deciding who are approved classes of lenders in accordance with the provisions of the Housing Loans Insurance Bill.

Senator WOOD(Queensland [9.29]. - I am interested in the point raised by Senator Cavanagh. I am unable to find in the legislation provision for redress by any person who is wrongly designated after the Minister or someone authorised by him' has issued a decree as to ownership. The matter does not come before Parliament. If the decision were made according to a regulation, it would come before Parliament and be the subject of debate. It is possible that the regulation would be disallowed. As the legislation stands, it gives authority to a person whose identity is unknown. That authority may be wrongly used and the victim of the error has no redress whatever.

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