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ATSIC AMENDMENT (INDIGENOUS LAND CORPORATION AND LAND FUND) BILL 1994

The Senate resolved itself into committee for the consideration of the

bill.

In the committee

Bill, taken as a whole by leave, debated.

Leave was granted on the application of the Minister for Foreign Affairs

(Senator Gareth Evans) to consider the bill in accordance with the list

of clauses and amendments circulated by Senator Gareth Evans.

Title and clause 1 debated.

On the motion of Senator Chamarette the following amendments were

debated and agreed to:

Title, page 1, after "Acts", insert "so as to establish a Land Fund and

an Indigenous Land Corporation to help redress the dispossession of

Aboriginal people and Torres Strait Islanders".

Clause 1, page 1, lines 3 to 7, omit the clause, substitute the

following clause:

Short title etc.

"1.(1) This Act may be cited as the Land Fund and Indigenous Land

Corporation (ATSIC Amendment) Act 1994.

(2) In this Act, "Principal Act' means the Aboriginal and Torres

Strait Islander Commission Act 19891.".

Title and clause 1, as amended, agreed to.

Clause 2 agreed to.

Senator Chamarette moved the following amendment:

After clause 2, page 2, insert the following clause:

Short title

"2A. Section 1 of the Principal Act is amended by omitting

"Commission" and substituting "Commission and Indigenous Land

Corporation".

Debate ensued.

Question--That the amendment be agreed to--put and negatived.

Clause 3--

Senator Ellison moved the following amendments:

No. 1--Clause 3, page 3, at end of section 191C, add the following

subsections:

" "(2) In the performance of its functions the Indigenous Land

Corporation or a subsidiary:

(a) must not hold or acquire; or

(b) must not enable:

(i) an Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander corporation; or

(ii) Aboriginal persons; or

(iii) Torres Strait Islanders; or

(iv) trustees of Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander trusts;

to hold or acquire;

an interest in land where the land is subject to native title or native

title rights and interests within the meaning of section 223 of the

Native Title Act 1993.

"(3) A failure to comply with subsection (2) does not invalidate

action by the Indigenous Land Corporation.".

No. 2--Clause 3, page 4, at end of proposed section 191D, add the

following subsection:

" "(4) In performing its land acquisition functions, the Indigenous

Land Corporation must take all reasonable steps, including, where

appropriate, making a non-claimant application within the meaning of

section 67 of the Native Title Act 1993, to satisfy itself that any

interest to be acquired in land is not subject to native title or

native title rights and interests within the meaning of section 223 of

that Act.".

No. 3--Clause 3, page 10, at end of proposed subsection 191N(2), add the

following paragraphs:

"(d) the need to give priority in the purchase of land to land on

which Aboriginal people or Torres Strait Islanders cannot claim

native title under the Native Title Act 1993 or land concerning

which Aboriginal people cannot make applications under the

Aboriginal Land Rights (Northern Territory) Act 1976;

(e) the need to ensure that land which is the subject of a claim

under the Native Title Act 1993 is not acquired;

(f) the need to give the upgrading of Aboriginal pastoral properties

priority over the acquisition of land in areas where there are

already substantial land holdings by Aboriginal people or

corporations.".

No. 4--Clause 3, page 15, at end of proposed subsection 191U, add the

following subsection:

Section 47 of Native Title Act not to apply

" "(3) Section 47 of the Native Title Act 1993 does not apply to land

acquired by a body corporate, person or trust under subsection (1).".

Debate ensued.

Question divided in respect of amendment no. 2.

Question--That amendments nos 1, 3 and 4 be agreed to--put.

The committee divided--

AYES, 28

Baume Boswell Brownhill Campbell Chapman Crichton-Browne Ellison Ferguson Gibson Herron Knowles Macdonald, Ian Macdonald, Sandy MacGibbon McGauran Newman O'Chee Panizza (Teller) Parer Patterson Reid Short Tambling Teague Tierney Troeth Watson Woods

NOES, 32

Beahan Bell Bolkus Bourne Carr Chamarette Childs Coates Collins Colston Cook Denman Evans, Christopher Evans, Gareth Faulkner Foreman (Teller) Forshaw Harradine Jones Kernot Lees Loosley McKiernan Margetts Neal Reynolds Schacht Sherry Spindler West Woodley Zakharov

Question negatived.

Amendment no. 2 further debated.

Senator Gareth Evans moved the following amendment to proposed amendment

no. 2:

Omit all words after "Indigenous Land Corporation", substitute:

"must take reasonable steps, including, where it deems it appropriate,

making a non-claimant application within the meaning of section 67 of

the Native Title Act 1993, to inform itself whether any interest to be

acquired in land is subject to native title or native title rights and

interests within the meaning of section 223 of that Act.".

Debate ensued.

Question--That Senator Gareth Evans' amendment to proposed amendment no.

2 be agreed to--put and passed.

Question--That amendment no. 2, as amended, be agreed to--put and

passed.

Senator Ellison moved the following amendment:

Clause 3, page 2, before proposed Division 1 of Part 4A, insert the

following Division:

" "Division 1A--Object and principles

Object of Part

Background

" "191AA.(1) It is important to recognise that many Aboriginal persons

and Torres Strait Islanders, because they have been dispossessed of

their traditional lands, will be unable to assert meaningful title to

those lands and that a special fund needs to be established to assist

them to acquire land.

Object

"(2) Therefore, the object of this Part is to assist those

dispossessed Aboriginal persons and Torres Strait Islanders to meet

their economic, cultural and spiritual aspirations through the

acquisition and management of land.

Giving effect to object

"(3) To give effect to that object, this Part establishes a fund,

known as the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Land Fund, and a

corporation, known as the Indigenous Land Corporation, to facilitate

the acquisition and management of land for those Aboriginal persons

and Torres Strait Islanders.

Principles to be adhered to

"191AB. In the performance of functions and the exercise of powers

under this Part, the following principles are to be adhered to:

(a) the functions and powers must be performed and exercised in the

way that, in the opinion of the person performing or exercising

them, best promotes the object of this Part;

(b) if a conflict arises as to the allocation of resources,

preference is to be given to those Aboriginal persons or Torres

Strait Islanders who are most severely dispossessed of their

traditional lands;

(c) community based Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander land

bodies should be recognised and used to the fullest extent;

(d) significant regard must be had to the views of those bodies;

(e) administrative costs should be kept to a minimum and duplication

of administrative capability should be avoided.".

Debate ensued.

At 12.45 p.m.: The Acting Deputy President (Senator Zakharov) resumed

the Chair and the Temporary Chairman of Committees (Senator McGauran)

reported progress.