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Monday, 11 December 1905

Mr DUGALD THOMSON (NORTH SYDNEY, NEW SOUTH WALES) - Section 22 of the principal Act provides that -

The Minister may direct the Commissioner to propose a fresh distribution of the State into divisions.

We have decided to retain the method provided by the principal Act, but I point out that one means by which delays are possible is that there is no direction to the Minister, and he may or may not direct the Commissioner to propose a fresh distribution. In view of the evil which has been pointed out, I would ask whether the Minister has any proposal to make to obviate the consequences of inaction where a distribution is really necessary. It is of no use to say that a redistribution ought to take place, if the Minister is given power to allow a redistribution proposed by the Commissioner to lapse.

Mr Groom - I will consider the matter and it can be brought up again when we are discussing the proposed new clause 12.

Amendment agreed to.

Clause, as amended, agreed to.

Clause 13 -

Section twenty-three of the Principal Act is amended by adding the following sub-section : - " (2) Such proclamation may be made -

(a)   whenever an alteration is made in the number of Members of the House of Representatives to be elected for the State ; and

(b)   whenever in one-third of the Divisions in the State the number of electors differs from a quota ascertained in the manner provided in this Part by a greater extent than one-fifth more or one-fifth less ; and

(c)   at such other times as the Governor. General thinks fit."

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