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Thursday, 1 September 1960

Mr Ward d asked the Prime Minister, upon notice -

1.   Did he receive a submission earlier this year from the Australian Council of Local Government Associations seeking Commonwealth financial assistance in meeting the needs of local governing authorities in Australia?

2.   If so, will he furnish, for the information of honorable members, a copy of his reply to this organization?

Mr Menzies - The answers to the honorable member's questions are as follows: -

1.   Yes. In November last year I met a deputation from the Australian Council of Local Government Associations. Further submissions were made early this year by the immediate past president of the council.

2.   The reply to the council is in the nature of private correspondence and therefore I do not propose to make it available. However, I might add that, as local authorities are created and exist under State laws, the Commonwealth takes the view that it is essentially the responsibility of the State governments to determine the extent to which the financial resources of these authorities should be supplemented and the form which any such supplementary assistance should take. The Commonwealth, for its part, is at present providing a great deal of financial assistance to the State governments to help them meet their various responsibilities, including the responsibilities they have in relation to their local authorities.

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