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Wednesday, 23 October 1974
Page: 1895

Senator GREENWOOD (Victoria) - I support what Senator Guilfoyle has said. It appears that the requirement of the Minister indicates the extent to which he wants to have a control over the activities of the Commission. We repeat what we said earlier: The Minister should indicate his intention. Is it to have a statutory corporation control the making of films along the lines which this Bill contemplates, or does he want to retain a ministerial or departmental control over what is essentially a departmental matter? I know- I imagine that the Minister will make reference to this point- that at least in the Australian Film Development Corporation Act 1970, if not in other legislation, the approval of the Minister has been inserted as a requirement to be obtained before a commission or a corporation can enter into agreement with another company. I think there is a significant difference between other legislation and this Bill. This Commission is designed to promote the making of short or small films with a host of small producers. In those circumstances it seems an onerous requirement for every projected activity of the Commission to have to be taken to the Minister. It may be that the Minister has good reasons, which he may explain, why he wants to keep the provision in this case. Notwithstanding what the past may indicate, we feel that this is a particular circumstance which ought to be allowed to develop with the Commission having the autonomy to decide what contracts it will make with other companies. To that extent this is somewhat different from the provision in the Film Development Corporation legislation of 1 970.

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