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Wednesday, 3 June 1942

Mr BEASLEY (West Sydney) (Minister for Supply and Development) (3:35 AM) . - There would be no prevention of any course of action by stations which did not cut across the revenue of the department. The clause as originally drafted was a reprint of a section of the Australian Broadcasting Commission Act. If stations could act in the way suggested by the honorable member, the department would lose the revenue it now receives from the use of land-lines for transmitting programmes from one State to another. I assure the honorable member that the purpose of the words in question is not in any way to restrict the procedure now followed by broadcasting stations or to prevent relaying. They give to the Postmaster-General's Department the power to ensure that its revenues shall not l>e endangered.

Sir Frederick Stewart - In spite of the protestations by the Minister the text of the clause as proposed will undoubtedly have the effect I have stated. The clause proposed is too comprehensive. It should not cover anything but the relaying of news items.

Mr BEASLEY - This safeguard has been .in the act since its beginning. It is significant that it has not hindered in any way the commercial stations.

Amendment agreed to.

Clause, as amended, agreed to.

Clause 98 - (1.) Where a person is convicted under th* last preceding section, or where the Minister has reason to believe that any person has rendered for broadcasting any item, or has passed or selected for broadcasting any matter broadcast from any broadcasting station, which has caused or may have caused offence to any section of the public, he may call upon that person to show cause why an order should not be made directing that he be prohibited from rendering any item or from passing or selecting any matter, for broadcasting, or that restrictions , be placed on his rendering items, or passing or selecting matter, for broadcasting.

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