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Wednesday, 25 July 1906

Senator BEST (Victoria) .- Senator Mulcahyhas made the suggestion with regard to recreation reserves that the sanction of Parliament should be obtained for their acquisition. I suggest to the honorable senator that an amendment to give effect to what he desires might be appropriately introduced in this clause. It will be observed that, according to sub-clause 3 of clause 16, when land has been acquired -

A copy of the notification shall be laid before both Houses of the Parliament within fourteen days after its publication in the Gazette if the Parliament is then sitting, and, if not, then within fourteen days after the next meeting of the Parliament.

In this clause 20 it is provided that, except in certain cases, which are set out - either House of the Parliament may, within thirty days after a copy of the notification has been laid before it, pass a resolution that the notification shall be void and of no effect, thereupon the notification shall be void and of no effect, and the land shall be deemed not to have been vested in the Commonwealth.

I suggest that we might here insert an amendment that, in the event of the compulsory resumption of a reserve, or portion of a reserve, it should appear on the face of the notification that it is a reserve, or portion of a reserve, that is being resumed in order that it might be specifically brought under the notice of Parliament.

Senator Playford - It is competent for Parliament to pass a resolution with regard to any land.

Senator BEST - No, it is not. There are three exceptions set out in this clause. The point 1 am making is that, where a recreation reserve, or portion of such a reserve, is resumed, it should be competent for Parliament to pass a resolution as provided in clause 20, and something should appear in the notification to direct the attention of Parliament to the fact that a recreation reserve, or part of such a reserve, is being resumed.

Senator Keating - If any flagrant injustice were proposed, some members of this Parliament might be trusted to direct attention to it.

Senator BEST - I think that there was a great deal of sympathy expressed with Senator Mulcahy's contention that Parliament should have some control where it is proposed to resume any part of a recreation reserve. I suggest to the Minister, with Senator Mulcahy 's permission, that some provision might be inserted in clause 20, enabling Parliament to pass a resolution negativing a resumption of a reserve or part of a reserve and requiring that the notification should show in such a case that it is a recreation reserve, or part of such a reserve, that is resumed. I agree that it is not an amendment which can be framed at the table, but I have no doubt, from what has been said by honorable senators, that the Minister will undertake to frame an amendment on the lines I have suggested.

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