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Saturday, 16 December 1905

Mr MAHON (Coolgardie) - I wish to direct attention to the constant appearance in our Estimates of items relating to law costs incurred by the Customs Department. At an early stage in the history of this Parliament the Department found itself troubled by a number of useless officers, and, instead of getting rid of them in accordance with the law, the Minister of the day, in an autocratic manner, dismissed them. Naturally they enforced their rights, and the Department was mulcted in heavy damages. Some lack) of supervision is evidenced in the Department by the way in which law costs are continually being piled up. More care should be exercised in this connexion, or the head of the Department should be given a strong hint that it is undesirable that any action should be taken which would land the Department in legal expenses.

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