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Tuesday, 8 November 1904

Mr BROWN (Canobolas) - I wish to direct attention to the wide difference between the position of Victoria and New South Wales in the matter of rent paid for buildings. The rent paid in New South Wales on account of the Trade and Customs, Defence, and Post and Telegraph Departments amounts to £12,054; whilst in Victoria the amount is only £2,481. The Department in New South Wales 'may be securing its buildings at reasonable rents, but I may point out that under the old State system engagements were made many years ago, and buildings have deteriorated in the meantime. It was found when the matter was investigated some time since that the Department was paying a rent that was altogether beyond the value of the buildings. The Minister should look into the subject, in order to ascertain whether the Department ought not to reconsider the amount of rent paid, particularly as the amount paid in New South Wales is more than double the amount paid in all the other States put together. The amount of rent in New South Wales is, as I have stated, £12,054, whereas the amount for the whole of the States is £20,401.

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