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Wednesday, 2 May 1973
Page: 1604

Mr DEPUTY SPEAKER - (Mr Berinson)- Order! We will have one speaker at a time.

Mr Les Johnson (HUGHES, NEW SOUTH WALES) - The significant parts of this legislation have been talked about fairly extensively. Let me summarise them. First of all there is the intention to increase the amount which an ex-serviceman can borrow from $9,000 to $12,000. It is a fact that the present loan limit of $9,000 represents only 57 per cent of the cost of the average war service home, so the increase to $12,000 will fill a long felt need. In addition, honourable members will recall that on many occasions amendments have been moved about the need to accommodate under the War Service Homes Act those members of the accredited welfare services who, up to date, have not been included. Although this does not represent a large amount of money, it is important for the people concerned. One can only speculate as to the reasons why the previous Government abstained from asquiescing in the proposals put by the previous Opposition.

Mr Holten - How much money is involved?

Mr Les Johnson (HUGHES, NEW SOUTH WALES) - I am not only prepared to indicate the amount of money involved but I am also prepared to meet the honourable member's request to name the organisations concerned. The Government has nothing to hide so far as this legislation is concerned. In fact the Government does not stand to hide anything at all. This is the new characteristic in government in Australia. The honourable member for Indi (Mr Holten) is very unused to it and a sense of suspicion pervades his every expression and attitude. There is a frankness about all these matters like the daisy in spring. The honourable member need not have any worry at all. The Government will be happy to meet his request for that sort of information.

Mr Holten - Just tell us now.

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