Legislation to strengthen the governance and capacity of the NSW Aboriginal Land Council Network has passed through NSW parliament, NSW Minister for Aboriginal Affairs Sarah Mitchell said today.
"The passing of the Aboriginal Land Rights Amendment (Local Aboriginal Land Councils) Bill without amendment in the NSW Parliament will bring a modern and flexible compliance framework to the regulation of the Aboriginal Land Rights Act," Mrs Mitchell said.
"These important changes will ensure Local Aboriginal Land Councils can effectively pursue land rights and unlock the economic benefits that can flow from land assets gained under the Land Rights Act."
Mrs Mitchell said the amendments would allow the NSW Aboriginal Land Council to issue Performance Improvement Orders to Local Aboriginal Land Councils and to appoint advisors to assist them in complying with the orders.
"The Improvement and Early Intervention Framework will promote greater transparency and help identify and share best-practice governance to strengthen the long-term performance of Local Aboriginal Land Councils," Mrs Mitchell said.
The Framework was jointly developed by the NSW Government and the NSW Aboriginal Land Council (NSWALC).
NSW Aboriginal Land Council Chair Roy Ah-See welcomed measures to strengthen governance and capacity of the Land Rights network.
"The Land Rights network has been advocating for early intervention measures to strengthen our network and we welcome the Government's willingness to partner with the NSW Aboriginal Land Council on this initiative," Cr Ah-See said.
Mrs Mitchell said the NSW Aboriginal Land Council Network was uniquely positioned to support economic development as well as social and cultural prosperity in the Aboriginal communities they represent.
"I thank the NSW Aboriginal Land Council for its collaboration and assistance in developing these important measures with the NSW Government," Mrs Mitchell said.
The new provisions will commence operation on 3 April 2017.