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Friday, 24 June 1904

Mr HUME COOK (BOURKE, VICTORIA) - I desire to know, whether .the Government adoption of the classification scheme is supposed to absolve them from any further liability under section 19 of the Victorian Act.

Mr WATSON - If the honorable member refers to the liability of the Commonwealth Government for the period between >the taking over of the transferred Departments bv the Commonwealth and the end of the present financial year, I say, decidedly, that the liability continues. But, if .he refers to any liability that mav accrue in future under the section of the' Constitution by which accruing rights are maintained, I must frankly confess that I have not the remotest idea of the legal position. My own view, however - which is not necessarily a legal one - is (hat the determination under law by the Commonwealth to pay certain rates, and to grade the officers in a certain way, must dispose of any previous arrangement. Whether that is a correct view has to be determined. At any rate, we have accepted the scheme devised by a non-political officer.

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