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Tuesday, 21 December 1993
Page: 5383


Senator COLLINS (Minister for Transport and Communications) (10.58 a.m.) —The answer to Senator Macdonald's question is that local councils will be in precisely the same position as everyone else. The matter has been canvassed, as Senator Macdonald knows. He was in the chamber at the time. There can be a policy difference between us, and clearly there is, on the nature of inalienable title but it is beyond dispute that inalienable title is, as it says, inalienable. One cannot recover those charges from the land but one can recover them from the landowner. In other words, the landowner can be sued for the recovery of rates or indeed any other local government charges, but what is not available for the recovery of that debt is the land itself because the title is inalienable.