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Thursday, 24 August 1972
Page: 642


Mr GRIFFITHS (SHORTLAND, NEW SOUTH WALES) - My question is directed to the Prime Minister. Is it a fact that lack of sewerage hygiene right across Australia is adding to pollution and undermining people's health? Is the imputation of some authorities true that machinery, material and labour are readily available but the finance is not and that the right honourable gentleman could not care a damn because the electorate of Lowe is almost 100 per cent sewered? For this purpose will the right honourable gentleman consider taking the legislative action necessary to enable the Government to create a revolving fund to be financed out of the interest being received and cancelled from Loan Fund finances under the CommonwealthState Housing Agreement, thereby absorbing unskilled and semi-skilled unemployed labour and at the same time providing to hundreds of thousands of home owners and occupiers of homes a long awaited, important household amenity?


Mr McMAHON - It will be known that at the last Premiers Conference substantial increases in financial assistance were given to the semi-government authorities and that we increased the limit of the amount that local authorities can borrow without reference to the Commonwealth. These were very substantial increases indeed, and it is by this means that we hope to ensure improvement in sewerage and other types of services. I resent the use of the words: could not care a damn'. In fact the very action taken by the Government itself and the kind of action we have continually thought about are designed to ensure that so far as the environment and the quality of life of people in the metropolitan and urban areas-


Mr Uren - The beaches of Sydney are being polluted with sewage and the Prime Minister knows it.


Mr SPEAKER -Order! I warn the honourable member for Reid.


Mr McMAHON - I can assure the honourable member for Reid that I have given more detailed study to this problem in recent months than he has given in recent years. But the matter is one that is constantly under the attention of the Government. I will give consideration to the particular problem raised by the honourable member.







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