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Wednesday, 8 November 1911

Senator FINDLEY (Victoria) (Honorary Minister) . - I hope that the Committee will not accept the amendment. Senator Lynch has made an earnest appeal on behalf of the men out-back, who may be separated by a considerable distance from any post or telegraph office. No matter how far removed a man or woman may be from any post or telegraph office, he wishes that man or woman, if either is charged with an infraction of the law, to be personally served with a summons. As I have already informed the Committee, all summonses are served personally unless otherwise prescribed. Under this Bill, unless a considerable expenditure will have to be incurred by serving summonses personally, the probability is that they will be served in no other way.

Senator Sayers - They will not be served at all.

Senator FINDLEY - Then Senator Sayers will be found voting in opposition to the amendment moved by Senator Lynch.

Senator Sayers - No, I intend to support it.

Senator FINDLEY - It is only fair that any serious contingency which may arise should be dealt with by regulation. There are contingencies which it is impossible to provide for in any Act of Parliament. I can assure honorable senators that there is no desire to serve, other than personally, a summons on any individual charged with a contravention of this Bill. But, if circumstances should arise which prevent the adoption of that course, we should have power to provide by regulation that summonses may be served in the easiest and the least inconvenient way. Honorable senators must have a very poor opinion of the Acts which have been passed by the Parliament from time to time if they believe that our Post and Telegraph Department is in such a condition that we cannot almost absolutely rely upon telegrams and registered letters safely reaching their intended destinations.

Senator Walker - A person may be in Europe at the time.

Senator FINDLEY - If that were so, how ridiculous would be the amendment which has been moved by Senator Lynch? Does that honorable senator desirethat we should follow a man to Europe? I do not think that the Committee need seriously entertain such a consideration. I am not wedded to every " i," or " t," or "full point" in this Bill, but naturally I adhere steadfastly to those provisions of it in which I believe. I believe in the new subclauses which I have submitted this afternoon, and I am not prepared to accept any amendment upon them. The Government have gone a long way to meet the wishes of objectors to the proposed new section 6ie in its original form.

Senator W RUSSELL (SOUTH AUSTRALIA) - The Ministry are giving members of the Opposition more consideration than they are extending to their own supporters.

Senator FINDLEY - We extend consideration wherever we think that it is merited. I hope that the Committee will not accept the amendment submitted by Senator Lynch. Persons who contravene the Act will suffer no hardship or inconvenience if the Committee carry the proposed new sub-clauses as submitted.

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