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Thursday, 3 March 1932

Mr BEASLEY (West Sydney) (2:50 AM) . - This proposed new clause is unusual in that it empowers the Treasurer to decide whether an offence shall be prosecuted. As the Assistant Treasurer (Mr. Bruce) has clearly shown that this legislation is introduced from political motives, it is possible that his decisions regarding prosecutions will be influenced by similar considerations.

A prominent person recognizing his obligation to the State might pay his taxation to the State Treasury instead of to the Commonwealth, whereupon the Commonwealth Treasurer, viewing the matter only from one angle, would instruct that he be prosecuted. If a person be guilty of an offence let him be prose- . cuted without the intervention of the Treasurer, who may be influenced by political bias. The proposed new subclause creates an undesirable precedent, and I shall vote against it.

Amendment - by leave - amended to read -

That the following sub-clause be added: - "(4.) An offence against section ten of this act shall not be prosecuted without the written consent of the Treasurer.".

Amendment agreed to.

Clause, as amended, agreed to.

Preamble verbally amended, and, as amended, agreed to.

Title agreed to.

Bill reported with amendments ; report - by leave - adopted.

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