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Friday, 26 September 1902

Mr Deakin - No ; because the Speaker had gone.

Mr WATSON - The Chairman has always taken the Chair previously in divisions. I think that we ought to have an explanation as to the practice when the Chair is filled by a temporary Chairman. Hitherto the practice has been for the Chairman of Committees to resume the Chair as soon as a division has been called for.

The ACTING CHAIRMAN.- The honorable member is out of order in discussing the action of the Chairman.

Mr WATSON - In view of the peculiar circumstances, the committee ought to be given another opportunity of considering this question, because it was not proper for the Chairman to act in that way. I propose to move that the item be reduced by £45.

Mr Deakin - Do it when there is a fuller attendance.

Mr WATSON - Is the honorable and learned gentleman going to adjourn now?

Mr Deakin - When we finish with the estimates of this department, we are going to adjourn.

Mr WATSON - But I wish to get at this item before we go any further.

Mr Deakin - The honorable member can move a reduction in the item on the report.

Mr WATSON - I shall take another opportunity to move a reduction.

Vote agreed to.

Progress reported.

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