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Wednesday, 1 December 1976


Mr Les Johnson (HUGHES, NEW SOUTH WALES) - I move:

After clause 68, insert the following new clause: "68A. (1) Regulations under the National Parks and Wildlife Conservation Act 197S providing for the protection or conservation of, or making other provision with respect to, wildlife, whether those regulations were made before or after the commencement of this Act, do not apply in relation to an area of Aboriginal land unless-

(a)   the Governor-General has, by Proclamation, declared that the application of those regulations to that area of land has been consented to by a Committee for that area established under this section; or

(b)   the Governor-General has, by Proclamation, declared that the national interest requires the application of those regulations to that area of land and that Proclamation nas taken effect in accordance with section 42. "(2) For the purposes of paragraph ( 1 ) (a), the Minister shall, on the application of the Minister administering the National Parks and Wildlife Conservation Act 1975, establish a Committee for an area of Aboriginal land. "(3) A Committee shall consist of-

(a)   a Chairman appointed by the Minister after consultation with the Minister administering the National Parks and Wildlife Conservation Act 1975;

(b)   such number of members, not being less than 3, as the Minister determines appointed by the Minister on the nomination of the Land Council for the area in which the Aboriginal land concerned is situated; and

(c)   a number of members equal to the number determined by the Minister under paragraph (b) appointed by the Minister on the nomination of the Director of National Parks and Wildlife.

(4)   The Chairman shall convene a meeting of a Committee for the purpose of considering the giving of a consent to a proposal to apply, in relation to the area of Aboriginal land for which the Committee is established, regulations made, or proposed to be made, under the National Parks and Wildlife Conservation Act 1975 providing for the protection and conservation of, or making other provision with respect to, wildlife.

(5)   The Chairman shall preside at a meeting convened under sub-section (4).

(6)   The consent of a Committee for the purposes of paragraph ( 1) (a) shall be given by resolution passed at a meeting of the Committee by a number of votes greater than the number determined by the Minister for the purposes of paragraph (3) (b).

(7)   Where a resolution referred to in sub-section (6) is moved, the Chairman shall endeavour to reconcile any conflicts of opinion among the other members of the Committee but the Chairman shall not vote on that unless the voting of the other members is equal and, in that event, the Chairman has a casting vote.

(8)   The Chairman shall, on the request of a member of a Committee who is an Aboriginal, arrange for the translation of the proceedings of the committee as they occur into the language of that member.

(9)   Subject to any direction of the Chairman, a member of a Committee who is an Aboriginal may be accompanied to a meeting of the Committee by such advisers as he may wish to accompany him.

(10)   In this section- "Chairman", means the Chairman of a Committee; "Committee", means a Committee established under sub-section (2).

(11)   Where an area of land becomes Aboriginal land, regulations in force under the National Parks and Wildlife Conservation Act 1975 providing for the protection or conservation of, or making other provision with respect to, wildlife, that were applicable to that area immediately before it became Aboriginal land continue, notwithstanding sub-section ( 1 ), to be applicable to that area but cease to apply to that area at the expiration of the period of 12 months commencing on the day on which that area became Aboriginal land unless, before that time-

(a)   the regulations are repealed; or

(b)   the requirements of sub-section (1) are complied with in relation to the regulations. '.

This proposed new clause relates to important matters involving the protection of wildlife and the general question of conservation. The way this matter is treated has a very significant effect on the way Aboriginal people live, in the sense that they live from the land. If they are to be restricted in their use of vehicles or certain processes of hunting, their health can be affected adversely. There is a great deal to be said about this matter. Many Aboriginal communities which have briefed members of the Opposition will be disappointed and frustrated with the parliamentary processes that prevent us from saying any more on this matter.

Proposed new clause negatived.

Consideration interrupted.

The DEPUTY CHAIRMAN (Dr Jenkins)Order! It being 10.30 p.m., in accordance with the order of the House of 18 February, I shall report progress.

Progress reported.







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