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Tuesday, 4 May 1993
Page: 89

(Question No. 2616)

Senator O'Chee asked the Minister for Defence, upon notice, on 31 March 1993:

  (1) What payments, if any, were or will be paid to Aboriginal land owners or claimants in respect of the acquisition of land for the Scherger Air Force Base.

  (2) If any such payments have been or will be made, what was the basis for assessing the amount of such payment.

Senator Robert Ray —The answer to the honourable senator's question is as follows:

  (1) The Commonwealth has entered into a lease with the Peppan Land Trust for the northern portion of land required for RAAF Base Scherger. The lease provides for an initial once only payment of $130,000 and an annual rental of $75,000.

  (2) The Trust's offer to lease the land to the Commonwealth in return for the initial payment and annual rental was considered reasonable. Agreement was reached on lease terms that protected the interests of both parties and consideration was made of the owners' special interest in the land.