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Monday, 20 December 1993
Page: 5334

Senator CRANE (10.26 p.m.) —I have a number of question relating to these amendments. My understanding is that the amendments relate basically to the revival of native title over pastoral leases where it has been extinguished under common law principles. My first question relates to the situation which currently exists in Western Australia. Some 39 out of 400 stations—approximately about 10 per cent—have leases held by Aboriginal interests in a variety of forms. Could the minister explain to the chamber what the status of the stations will be, particularly in view of the fact that this was part of a program that was started in the mid-1980s by the Western Australian government after consultation with a number of groups in the community? What will be the status of those stations under this proposed clause?