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Wednesday, 3 June 1942

Senator FOLL (Queensland) (5:34 AM) . - The Minister practically admitted that it would be a fair amendment if the intention was to reduce compensation to the State of New South Wales by £1,337,000, the sum which the Government of that State is not now called upon to pay annually for child endowment. I understand that the New South Wales Government has entered into an agreement with the Commonwealth Government that will bring that State into line with the other States in relation to widows' pensions.

Senator McLeay - That is not the case. The Government of New South Wales wants the widows' pension rate in relation to the first child increased to 10s. by a subsidy of 5s. a week to be paid by that Government. In that event widows in New South Wales would receive 10s. a week for the first child, but the payment in respect of the first child in the other States would be 5s. a week.

Senator FOLL - There is no reason why the Commonwealth should be expected to pay to one State in respect of widows' pensions a higher rate of pension than is paid in the other States. I have been informed that the Government of New South Wales has decided to come into line with the other State governments in relation to widows' pensions. I think that the Minister is unreasonable in asking for special consideration for one State because the whole basis of this legislation should be uniformity. I suggest that the Minister, should reconsider the matter.

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