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Wednesday, 20 November 1912

Senator SAYERS (Queensland) .- After hearing the Minister admit that a future Minister might not carry the provision into effect, I would sooner see the matter dealt with in the Bill than be left to regulations. I am entirely opposed to leaving such things to the discretion of the Minister, because Governments change. ft would be a very good thing, I think, to retain the clause in its original form. If this attachment is necessary to insure the safety of the public, it should be provided for in the Bill.

Senator Pearce - It is unnecessary in regard to some ships.

Senator SAYERS - I do not think that it would inflict a great hardship upon any ship, because the cost of providing rudder chains would not be great. I believe that the original clause would meet the case better than will the proposed amendment. Senator Lynch has given us a very clear proof of the necessity for making a provision of this kind. We know that where a discretion is left to a Minister a loophole is left.

Senator Lt.-Colonel Sir ALBERTGOULD (New South Wales) [8.40].- Suppose that we agree to the amendment of the Minister of Defence, what will be our position with regard to dealing with the amendment of the other House? Shall we be in a position to disagree with that amendment after we have amended it as proposed ?

Senator Pearce - Certainly.

Senator Lt Colonel Sir ALBERT GOULD - Or will it still be open to us to reject the amendment of the other House?

Senator Pearce - It will have to be put as amended.

Senator Lt Colonel Sir ALBERT GOULD .- Very well. If the Committee believe that an independent chain connexion is necessary, let them say so, and not leave the matter to be dealt with by regulation, and even if it should apply to twin or triple screw steamers, the cost would not be very much.

Senator Guthrie - A number of people will lose a lot of sleep through the chains banging against the sides of the steamers.

Motion agreed to.

Motion (by Senator Pearce) proposed -

That the amendments, as amended, be agreed to.

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