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Thursday, 7 August 1930

Senator DUNCAN (NEW SOUTH WALES) .- I think that the request of the committee for a further extension of time is, in the circumstances, a most extraordinary one. I concede that the committee has had a big job to perform, but I think that it has had ample time since the closing of the inquiry to prepare and submit its final report to the Senate. It is possible that even had that report been submitted to-night, as we anticipated, we could not have finalized this legislation before the close of the session, but at least honorable senators would have learned the committee's views on the subject, and would have been able to make their own. investigations in the matter during the recess. That would have enabled honorable senators to attend the next session fully acquainted with the facts and ina position to give to the country as perfect a measure as is possible. If we agree to a further postponement nothing will be done until some weeks after the commencement of the next sitting of Parliament. The committee should have had its report ready to-night.

Senator Sir Hal Colebatch - It is ready.

Senator DUNCAN (NEW SOUTH WALES) - Then why is it not presented to Parliament in the proper way ?

Senator E B Johnston - An interim report has been presented, a most valuable document.

Senator DUNCAN (NEW SOUTH WALES) - The final report should have been presented by this time, so that the Senate could have had the benefit of the committee's deliberations.

Senator Sir William Glasgow - Has the honorable senator read the interim report ?

Senator DUNCAN (NEW SOUTH WALES) - I have, and I realize that it advances certain reasons why the committee has not finalized its deliberations. They do not convince me that a further postponement of the matter is justified.

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