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Friday, 29 July 1904

Mr SPEAKER - May I take this, opportunity to remind the House that honorable members when speaking are to be taken as expressing their own opinions, though not necessarily those of their fellow members; -and that every honorable member is entitled to place his own views before the assembly, even though they mav be views from, which every other honorable member dissents. I ask honorable members to listen to the member addressing the Chair, without striving by interjection to force him to express their views instead of his own.

Mr SYDNEY SMITH (MACQUARIE, NEW SOUTH WALES) - I should not have taken this unusual step had I not thought it important, in the interests not only of the State which I represent, but of the whole, of Australia, that the true facts in . connexion with certain matters should be laid before the House, so that even honorable members who may be opposed to the course-

Mr SPEAKER - I would remind the honorable member that he has not yet obtained leave to move the adjournment.

Mr SYDNEY SMITH (MACQUARIE, NEW SOUTH WALES) - I wish to move the adjournment of the House for the purpose of asking that Mr. Wade, Chief - Engineer of Water Conservation for New South Wales, who is now in Melbourne, be called upon for a full . report in regard to the water supply available at or near Lyndhurst.

Mr SPEAKER - I have received an intimation from che honorable member for Macquarie that he desires to move the adjournment of the House, to discuss a definite matter of urgent public importance, viz.. " The desirability of obtaining further information from Mr. Wade, Chief Engineer of Water Conservation in New

South Wales, who is now in Melbourne, concerning the volume and cost of water supply at or near Lyndhurst."

Five honorable members having risen in their places,

Question proposed:

Mr Thomas - Is the honorable member stone-walling the Seat of Government Bill?

Mr SYDNEY SMITH (MACQUARIE, NEW SOUTH WALES) - I take all responsibility formy actions in this Chamber. All I ask is that the same courtesy may be extended to me in making this request for information as I should be ready to extend to any other honorable member. The question I wish to discuss is a very important one. Misleading statements have been made, both publicly and privately, by the advocates of other sites, for the purpose of damaging the chances' of the Lyndhurst site, and I feel that' in the interests of all'- concerned the Chief Engineer of Water Conservation in New South Wales, who has been sent to Melbourne by his Government to give honorable members full information in regard to the possibility of conserving water in the district, should be examined at the Bar of the House, or by a Select Committee, on his report, which I put before the House last night, so that all the facts relating to the matter may be ascertained.' My action proves that I am desirous that the fullest publicity shall be given to all matters relating to the Lyndhurst site.

Mr Thomas - The honorable member made a long speech on this subject last' night.

Mr SYDNEY SMITH (MACQUARIE, NEW SOUTH WALES) - Yes, but the accuracy of many of the statements which I then made on the authority of Mr. Wade were questioned bv certain honorable members. I believe that a majority are desirous of knowing the truth, and, therefore, I wish to give the House an opportunity to examine Mr. Wade in a most public manner, both on every statement which I" have made, and in regard to other matters bearing on the question at issue. Mr. Wade has submitted a report which shows that a gravitation supply capable of supplying 100,000 people with 100 gallons per day throughout the year can be obtained at Lyndhurst, the rate of consumption provided for being twice that of Melbourne and Sydney combined, and Mr. Wade has allowed for 8 per cent, to run off in the course of a dry year.

Mr SPEAKER - The honorable member is not asking that further information shall be supplied, but is quoting statements in a report which he says is now available. I hope that he will confine himself to the terms of his motion.

Mr SYDNEY SMITH (MACQUARIE, NEW SOUTH WALES) - Certain statements have been made, and I am anxious that Mr. Wade shall be asked to give the House full and complete information on the whole question. I wish other honorable members to have the same opportunity to examine him as I have had, so that the full light of day shall be shed on the subject. In a report which Mr. Wade has written to me, and which is now in my possession, he says that a gravitation scheme can be obtained at Lyndhurst which would supply 100,000 people at the allowance I have already named ; and that if more water were required, a storage reservoir could be constructed on the Lachlan, just below the junction of Wyangala Creek. The cost of the work has been estimated at ^581,200, which includes the cost of twenty-two miles of steel main, one-tenth of the cost of the dam, and the cost of buildings, pumps, boilers, engineering, and contingencies. Making provision for fuel and stores, maintenance, and interest and sinking fund at 6 per cento the supply would cost 7jd. per 1,000 gallons. At the present time the water supplied in Sydney and in Melbourne costs is. per 1,000 gallons, while in some places where there are pumping schemes the cost is as high as is. 6d. per 1,000 gallons. A weir to supply the requirements of a Capital City, estimated at 9,000,000 gallons per day, could be constructed for £100,000

Mr SPEAKER - The Standing Order prevents any discussion which anticipates debate oh an item of business already appearing on the notice-paper, and, therefore, nothing can be said now which could be said in Committee on the Seat of Government Bill. The honorable member must confine himself wholly to the matter to which' his notice refers, the desirability of examining Mr. Wade at the Bar, or before a Select Committee, to obtain further information from him regarding the possibilities of water supply at Lyndhurst. He will not be in order in saying now anything which could be said in Committee on the Bill. His present remarks are clearly such- as could be made at that stage, and, therefore, they are not in order.

Mr SYDNEY SMITH (MACQUARIE, NEW SOUTH WALES) - I am merely endeavouring to justify my contention that Mi. Wade should be examined at the Bar of the House.

Mr SPEAKER - I would point out that every word which the honorable member has uttered during the . past two or three minutes could be appropriately uttered upon the Seat of Government Bill. He seems rather to be showing the want of necessity to examine Mr. Wade before the Bar of the House than the necessity to do so. I must .ask the honorable member to confine his remarks to the question before the Chair.

Mr SYDNEY SMITH (MACQUARIE, NEW SOUTH WALES) - I shall endeavour to do so. I merely desire to point out that the figures supplied by Mr. Wade in connexion with the water supply at Lyndhurst have been questioned by honorable members

Mr SPEAKER - Of course, it is not my business to indicate to the honorable member what he ought to say, but I would suggest to him a line of argument which would be in order, so as to contrast it with a line of argument which is not in order. Upon a motion such as this, it would be perfectly competent for the honorable member to argue that Mr. Wade knew all about the locality in question, and .that his opinion was worth having. Any such line of argument would be perfectly in order, but the line of argument which he is following is not in order.

Mr SYDNEY SMITH (MACQUARIE, NEW SOUTH WALES) - I thoroughly realize the difficult position which I occupy. My only desire is to direct attention to the important statements which have been made by Mr. Wade, the Chief Engineer of Water Conservation in New South Wales, in connexion with the water supply at Lyndhurst That officer has reported upon all the sites.

Sir William Lyne - Did he appear before the Commissions ?

Mr SYDNEY SMITH (MACQUARIE, NEW SOUTH WALES) - Yes. Nearly all the information upon which the Commissioners based their report concerning the question of water supply was obtained from him.

Sir William Lyne - Is not that information contained in their report?

Mr SYDNEY SMITH (MACQUARIE, NEW SOUTH WALES) - No, because it is only recently that surveys have been made in connexion with the Lyndhurst site. Mr. Wade shows very clearly that by constructing a weir upon the Lachlan he could conserve-

Mr Mcwilliams - Where is Mr. Wade now ?


Mr Austin Chapman - Why is he here ?

Mr SYDNEY SMITH (MACQUARIE, NEW SOUTH WALES) - I requested the Premier of New South Wales to instruct him to visit Melbourne.

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