|Details of the Agreement
The Agreement was registered with the National Native Title Tribunal (NNTT) on 24 October 2013. The Agreement is said to commence on the commencement date but the Extract does not specify a start or end date.
The Agreement operates to provide the parties' consent to certain 'future acts' done by Ergon Energy. These 'future acts' are outlined in the Extract as follows:
a) Minor works, which are defined in Schedule 2 as:
- tree lopping and tree clearing in the area surrounding the infrastructure;
- repairing damaged infrastructure;
- replacing damaged or destroyed infrastructure;
- maintaining and inspecting infrastructure; and
- installation of electricity poles that are tied into the existing powerline system in urban areas/town precincts.
b) Access to the area in order to carry out these minor works;
c) Use of access tracks to access land where minor works are being carried out. Where these access tracks are not dedicated roads, consent is given to allow Ergon Energy to use and maintain these access tracks, as well as be granted an easement, permit or licence over them;
d) Any future acts on Aboriginal Land subject to the prior written consent of the parties having been obtained; and
e) Subject to Cultural Heritage Management Processes stipulated in the Agreement, the grant of any easement, licence or permit over relevant electricity infrastructure.
Native Title Provisions
Clause 20.2 refers to any future acts, except for the surrender of native title, done after 24 October 2013. The parties consent to future acts being done within the Agreement Area provided that written consent has been given.
Right to negotiate provisions do not apply
The parties agree that the right to negotiate provisions of the Native Title Act 1993 (Cth) do not apply, as the alternative consultation provisions are to be followed instead.
Without this agreement, the grant would have been invalid and the right to negotiate provisions of the Native Title Act 1993 (Cth) would apply. Under this Act any activity, such as a grant of land, that may affect native title rights is defined as a ‘future act’ and must comply with the future act provisions of the Act in order to be valid.
Native Title in the ILUA Area
The Bulganunna Aboriginal Corporation administers land on trust for the Jangga people. In a consent determination on 9 October 2012, the Federal Court recognised the exclusive and non-exclusive native title rights of the Jangga People in an area spanning approximately 20,350 square kilometres in Central Queensland.
The claim was first filed in 1998 with an application for determination of native title lodged over an area west of Mackay, between the Leichhardt Range and the Great Dividing Range. This application was accepted for registration in 2000.
The Federal Court recognised the Jangga People's Native Title rights and interests over approximately 11,350 square kilometres of land in Central Queensland.
At the special Federal Court sitting at Glenden, Justice Rares congratulated the parties on achieving a ‘mutually satisfactory result.’
Natural Resources and Mines Minister Andrew Cripps said today's decision reaffirmed the Jangga People's affinity with their traditional lands around Mount Coolon, Urella and Lake Dalrymple.
'This Native Title Consent Determination recognises the Jangga People's exclusive native title rights and non-exclusive rights to access, hunt, fish and gather within the determination area in accordance with their traditional laws and customs,' Mr Cripps said (The Honourable Minister Cripps, Media Release, 2012).
Jangga elder Col McLennan said the decision would greatly benefit his people.
"A lot of things are going to be bigger and better for the Jangga people and all the other traditional owners around the Jangga clan." (ABC News 2012)
The Determination Area includes 218 parcels of land comprising of reserves, national park, unallocated State land, pastoral holdings and lease land.
A number of Indigenous Land Use Agreements (ILUAs) have been entered into as a result of the determination. The ILUAs will establish how native title rights and interests will be exercised in the Determination Area, providing a framework for managing cultural heritage issues, future activities, and use and access arrangements.