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Wednesday, 3 June 1942

Mr SPOONER (Robertson) .- I agree entirely with the spirit of this clause which is designed to keep in the hands of the Government control of purchases or sales of property by the commission in excess of £5,000. Suppose that, on a piece of vacant land purchased for £4,900, the commission erected a building costing £50,000, would that be an acquisition which required the consent of the Minister?

Mr Spender - I think the point raised by the honorable member is covered by clauses 20 and 21 read in conjunction.

Mr SPOONER - But clause 21 relates to agreements.

Mr Spender - There was a method by which the broadcasting authority in New Zealand made successive contracts, none of them exceeding the limit permitted. It is something that cannot very well be avoided, I am afraid.

Mr SPOONER - If the honorable member for Warringah (Mr. Spender) thinks that the matter is made watertight by the two clauses, 20 and 21, I shall be satisfied.

Mr Spender - It is not watertight.

Mr SPOONER - Perhaps it could be tightened by providing that the commission shall not own property the value of which exceeds £5,000, without the approval of the Minister.

Clause agreed to.

Clauses 21 to 25 agreed to.

Clause 26 (Bands and orchestras).

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