Subject to the provisions of Division 4 of Part 2 of the Aboriginal Land Rights Act 1983 referred to above Aboriginal Land Councils can deal with
their lands in the same way that any other property owner is entitled to. Land dealings under the Act are a key way for economic benefits to
be realised for the Aboriginal people of NSW.
Divisions 4 and 4A of Part 2 (“the land dealings provisions” of the Act specify:
- processes and roles for the NSW Aboriginal Land Council and Local Aboriginal Land Councils in relation to land dealings
- certainty for third parties involved in the development of land vested in Aboriginal Land Councils
- that land dealings (other than acquisition of land) be consistent with an Aboriginal Land Council’s Community, Land and Business Plans
- that proposed land dealings may require assessing by an expert panel
- that ‘approval certificates’ are to be obtained before an Aboriginal Land Council can deal with land, enter an agreement to deal with land,
lodge development applications with local government authorities, or register any dealings on title to the land under the Real Property
- a system of registration prohibition notices to enforce agreements and approval
- requirement of the payment of a ‘community development levy’ on the sale of land which is to be paid into a Community Development Fund to be
used for acquiring further land and to promote the more even distribution of wealth across the state.
All land “vested” in Aboriginal Land Councils is subject to the approval process. Approval is required for the following types
of land dealings:
- The sale, purchase, exchange or mortgage of land
- Leases, excluding a lease for a period of less than three years (including residential tenancy agreements)
- Grant or release an easement over land
- Making a Development Application in relation to land within the meaning of the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979
- Subdivision of land or enter into a plan of subdivision
- Entering into a biobanking agreement relating to land under the Threatened Species Conservation Act 1995
- Entering into a conservation agreement under the National Parks and Wildlife Act 1974
- Entering into a wilderness protection agreement relating to land under the Wilderness Act 1987
- Or entering into an agreement to do any of the above.
Approval of land dealings is the responsibility of the NSW Aboriginal Land Council.
The information presented here is only a brief overview of the land dealings provisions. Please be sure to consult the Aboriginal Land Rights Act
1983 and the Aboriginal Land Rights Regulation 2002 in relation to land dealings. More extensive information can be found, including relevant
policies and forms, on the NSW Aboriginal Land Council website or by contacting its Commercial Unit as listed below.
For further and detailed information, including the necessary land dealing application process contact the NSW Aboriginal Land Council on (02) 9689 4444 or visit www.alc.org.au