PUBLIC WORKS COMMITTEE WHETHER WORKS ADDITIONAL TO MAIN WORK PREVIOUSLY APPROVED HAVE TO BE REFERRED TO COMMITTEE
COMMONWEALTH PUBLIC WORKS COMMITTEE ACT 1913, s. 15 (1)
The following memorandum has been forwarded to me for advice:
In connection with the construction of a naval base at Westernport, Victoria, certain works-water supply, sewerage, and two lots of buildings of various kinds-were referred to the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Public Works for report. The Committee have reported and the works are well in hand.
It is now found that certain other buildings such as laundry, civilian officers' residences, etc.-essential to the establishment of this naval base-are required, and the Minister desires to know whether he must make a further reference to the Public Works Committee in regard to these additional buildings.
Section 15 (1) of the Commonwealth Public Works Committee Act 1913 reads: (1) No public work of any kind whatsoever (except such works as have already been authorized by Parliament or which are authorized before the first day of January One thousand nine hundred and fifteen, and except works for the naval or military defence of the Commonwealth exempted by Order in Council from the operation of the Act)
the estimated cost of completing which exceeds Twenty-five thousand pounds, and whether such work is a continuation, completion, repair, re-construction, extension, or a new work, shall be commenced unless sanctioned as in this section provided.
The necessity to refer to the Public Works Committee the proposal to erect the additional buildings now found necessary at the naval base depends upon whether the cost of the additional work will exceed £25,000.
If the cost of the additional works does not exceed £25,000, the reference of the proposal to the Committee is, in my opinion, not required under the Act.
[Vol. 16, p. 59]