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Thursday, 22 November 1973
Page: 2083

Senator MURPHY (New South WalesAttorneyGeneral and Minister for Customs and Excise) - I wish to advert to only a very minor point. It might be cleared up at some later stage. Clause 8 of the Bill as introduced by Senator Wright states:

The new and permanent Parliament House proposed to be constructed after the commencement of this Act shall be constructed upon the site marked 'Site of Parliament House' on the plan set out in the Schedule.

I am a little troubled as to whether the drafting of this clause is sufficient to meet what obviously Senator Wright intends. As I understand it, he intends that the new parliament house be situated within the red circle shown in the Schedule to the amended Bill. If one continued the red line and made a circle it would be clear that the site was meant to be on Capital Hill. The honourable senator does not quite say that in his Bill. What he says may be construed as meaning 2 things. It could mean that the site of the new parliament house would be precisely where those words Site of Parliament House' appear in the Schedule, which would be too small an area. On the other hand- this troubles me more- some people who are looking at this perhaps not in the spirit in which we intend could say that the site of the new parliament house extends to the whole of that area surrounded by the red line in the Schedule of the 'Bill as proposed to be amended', which would include Camp Hill. We are lucky that it does not extend down to the lake. As I understand what Senator Wright says, he obviously intends that the new parliament house be built within that circular portion. If we extended the red line a little or did something else- in other words, if we made a slight change in the drafting- I think it would bear out what Senator Wright intends. I will not say anything other than that the matter can be easily attended to so that it is made quite clear that the site is intended to be on Capital Hill and so that no one can draw a mistaken interpretation -

Senator Cotton - Or by deviousness.

Senator MURPHY - Or, as Senator Cotton says, by deviousness say: 'Tha', is what you said in your Bill. It includes Camp Hill, and that is where it is'. We want to avoid any wrong suggestion in relation to what is intended.

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