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Wednesday, 30 May 1984
Page: 2111

Senator PRIMMER —I present the report from Estimates Committee C on the particulars of proposed additional expenditure for the year 1983-84, together with the Hansard record of the Committee's proceedings. I advise the Senate that copies of the report will be made available as soon as they have been printed.

Ordered that the report be printed.

Senator PRIMMER —I seek leave to make a very brief statement explaining remarks made by the Committee in its report.

Leave granted.

Senator PRIMMER —In its report the Committee stated:

The Committee particularly draws the attention of the Senate to the failure of the Department of Trade to supply answers to questions. Written replies to a number of questions were promised by the Department at the hearing on 30 April.

The Committee considers that the provision of detailed written answers to questions is a normal and necessary part of Estimate Committee operations, and is essential for the proper consideration of Appropriation Bills by the Senate.

The Committee believes that debate on the Second Reading of Appropriation Bills 3 and 4 should not proceed if satisfactory written answers are not provided in advance of the Bills being called on.

Mr President, because of the seriousness of the Committee's recommendations, I feel I should inform the Senate that we have now received the outstanding answers from the Department of Trade. They were handed to the Secretary of the Committee at 10 minutes past 9 this morning.