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Wednesday, 16 August 1989
Page: 177


Senator MICHAEL BAUME(5.27) —I move:

That the Senate take note of the paper.

The problem with the annual report of the Trustees of the Canberra Public Cemeteries for the year ended June of last year is that it is being presented to the Senate in August of this year. Quite frankly, there has to be a little more life in the office of the trustees-a little more effort in getting this kind of report, which involves the spending of public money and a considerable subsidy from this Government, before this Parliament. It is unreasonable, I suppose, to criticise the Chairman of the trustees because, according to this report, they sent the letter covering the report to the Minister for the Arts, Tourism and Territories, Mr Holding, on 20 December 1988. Unless it got lost in some dead letter office, it has apparently languished in his Department, the Government showing its usual contempt for this chamber by not bothering to table the report in the hope that no-one will know or care about the spending of Government money. The Auditor-General's report was dated 16 December 1988. There is no sound reason why there should have been any delay whatsoever in providing the Senate with full information. I draw the Senate's attention to this as yet another example of the contempt with which this Government treats this chamber.

Question resolved in the affirmative.