- Government introduces key reforms to unlock economic potential of Crown land
- The Bill will create a new form of tenure known as a 'diversification lease' unlocking underutilised Crown land for a range of uses
- Changes will deliver a range of benefits and efficiencies for Pastoralists
- The Bill modernises key sections of the Land Administration Act 1997 and the Public Works Act 1902, creating efficiencies for industry in WA
The McGowan Government has moved ahead with key legislative changes that will help unlock the economic potential of the State's Crown land assets, with the introduction of the Land and Public Works Legislation Amendment Bill 2022 into Parliament.
The new Bill proposes to create a new form of tenure known as a 'diversification lease', that will enable Crown land to be used for multiple purposes, unlocking underutilised land for a range of users and industries, and maximising the delivery of benefits to Western Australians.
The proposed lease will also support the State's transition to net zero by 2050, through opening up Crown land for renewable energy proposals, whilst providing for the co-existence of mining and Native Title rights and interests similar to pastoral leases.
The proposed lease will encourage greater utilisation of Crown land, assisting to diversify the State's economy, facilitate increased investment in pastoralism and other regionally based industries, and unlock greater economic opportunities for Aboriginal people.
The Bill is also aimed at providing greater security for the State's pastoral industry. This includes an ability for pastoral lessees to extend the term of their leases, supporting investment in pastoral businesses, potential carbon sequestration proposals and better management of the land through security of tenure.
The proposed Bill also makes it easier for the pastoral industry by:
- amending the pastoral rent determination methodology and the scope for phasing-in of rents to reduce the volatility seen in previous rent reviews, providing greater certainty to the sector;
- removing administrative inefficiencies, allowing lessees to transfer, renew and amend permits; and
- bringing changes to the timing for lodgement of mandatory Annual Returns, to better align with industry mustering practices.
The proposed amendments will also modernise key sections of the LAA and Public Works Act, streamlining the Land approvals system and creating efficiencies for industry.
Comments attributed to Lands Minister John Carey:
"This Bill is all about unlocking the true economic potential of our significant land assets, while ensuring we support existing interest holders including Native Title holders and pastoralists.
"We know there is significant opportunity to diversity our economy by better harnessing our land assets, and as the world transitions away from fossil fuels, increasing scope to expand the State's renewable energy sector.
"Pastoralists are a significant contributor to our economy and the management of land across the State. These sector has been widely consulted on these changes, which will ensure the strength of the industry moving forwards."
Minister's office - 6552 5300