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Tuesday, 11 October 1910

Senator PEARCE (Western AustraliaMinister of Defence) . - Clause 268 enables regulation's to be made in regard to " number of passengers to be carried and their accommodation." I know of no more convenient way of dealing with this matter than by regulation. The passenger accommodation naturally varies with each ship, with the length of the voyage, the nature of the seas in which the voyage takes place, and a number of other considerations. The honorable senator will, I am sure, find that the regulations will provide for better accommodation than his amendment would secure. It is a well-known fact that as the law stands the accommodation for passengers is superior to that provided for the crew. Under this Bill we are providing for better accommodation for the crew, and it naturally follows that better accommodation will be provided for the passengers. Already on some of the boats trading on our coasts splendid accommodation is provided for passengers. I am personally acquainted with the accommodation on the vessels trading between Melbourne and Western Australia, and can speak of the improvements that have been effected in recent years. It is by no means likely that the regulations will provide for inferior accommodation to that which is already provided.

Senator Vardon - Will the regulations have to be approved of by Parliament ?

Senator PEARCE - The regulations will have to be laid before Parliament a certain number of days, and unless disapproved of will become law. They can, of course, be amended from time to time.

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