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Monday, 14 September 2009
Page: 6446

Senator WONG (Minister for Climate Change and Water) (5:57 PM) —I will take advice on the second point. Whilst officers are giving me that advice, I will respond to Greens amendment (1) on sheet 5837. As I think you are aware, the government is not supporting this amendment. We recognise that this is based on a proposal by the Chief Justice. The amendment in effect grants a presumption of continuity of connection. My colleague the Attorney-General I think has said that he has an open mind to further legislative change that may facilitate resolution of native title claims; however, it is the Attorney-General’s and the government’s view that such a proposal would need to be the subject of broad community consultation before proceeding. Further, the Attorney would like to assess the impact of the changes contained in this bill before considering further changes which may improve the operation of the act. I will have to come back to you, Senator Siewert, as the officer appears to have left the chamber to check.