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Wednesday, 3 June 1942

Mr BEASLEY (West Sydney) (Minister for Supply and Development) (3:31 AM) . - I move -

That the following words be added to the clause: - "and the approval of the Minister".

The committee will remember that the honorable member for Parramatta (Sir Frederick Stewart) could not understand why the words " and the approval of the Minister " were necessary, and, in the absence of information from the PostmasterGeneral's Department as to why it was necessary that those words be included in the clause, I agreed to their being left out. I am now informed that by the deletion of the words all real control over the re-broadcasting by Australian stations of items transmitted by other stations has been removed from the PostmasterGeneral's Department. Stations will be permitted to pick up news services, &c, from other stations, instead of relying on the ordinary communication channels, local and international, for the relay. That would have a detrimental effect on telephone and telegraph revenue. It is important, therefore, that the words in question be replaced. The honorable member for Parramatta believed that the words were, if not a hindrance to the broadcasting stations, superfluous, because of the fact that broadcasting stations had to have the consent of the originating stations before they could relay programmes. As the words are necessary to protect the revenues of the postal service, I ask the honorable member to aGree to the replacement of the words in the clause.

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