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Wednesday, 19 April 1972
Page: 1779

Mr HAMER (ISAACS, VICTORIA) - My question is directed to the Prime Minister. Did the Goverment in any way attempt to influence the Public Service Board in its recent wages decision?

Mr McMAHON - It should be known to the House that the Public Service Board in its wage determining functions is completely independent and free of the Government. We have no legal right to intervene and we have not intervened when particular matters of this kind have been involved. Anything that is said to the contrary, irrespective of whether it happens to come from the opposite side of the House or elsewhere, is completely incorrect. I take it a stage further and say that if there were any intervention or attempted intervention I believe it would be the responsibility of the Public Service Board publicly to report on it, and that is what I believe it would do. So, Sir, the answer is clear. No, there has not been any intervention. We have no legal capacity to intervene and under no circumstances would we do so. I know from my personal knowledge that no intervention has occurred since I have been Prime Minister.

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