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Native Title Legislation Amendment Bill 2019

The submission to the Senate Legal and Constitutional Affairs Legislation Committee’s (the Committee) inquiry into the Native Title Legislation Amendment Bill 2019 (the Bill) was prepared by the Law Council. 

The Bill amends the Native Title Act 1993 (Cth) (the Native Title Act) and the Corporations (Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander) Act 2006 (Cth) (the CATSI Act). It is almost identical in terms to the version that lapsed following the dissolution of the 45th Parliament.

More pertinently, it is similar to the Exposure Draft of the Native Title Legislation Amendment Bill 2018 (the Exposure Draft), having been developed following public consultations on the Options Paper and the Exposure Draft.

The Law Council previously provided written submissions to the Attorney-General’s Department (AGD) in relation to both the Options Paper and the Exposure Draft. These submissions were informed by the Law Council’s participation in the Australian Law Reform Commission’s (ALRC) review of the Native Title Act, and the resultant Connection to Country report published in 2015.

The Law Council also provided a written submission to the Senate Finance and Public Administration Committee in relation to the now lapsed Corporations (Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander) Amendment (Strengthening Governance and Transparency) Bill 2018.

The Law Council welcomes the ongoing reform of the native title regime established pursuant to the Native Title Act and acknowledges that the extensive litigation and procedural activity associated with the regime gives rise to many operational issues and norms. In this submission, the Law Council does not seek to address each of the amendments proposed in the Bill. Rather, it addresses issues of particular concern and provides the following key recommendations.

You can read the full submission below.

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