MCA Submission to the Aboriginal Heritage Amendment Bill (VIC) 2014 Exposure Draft

The Minerals Council of Australia Victorian Division (MCA Victoria) welcomes the opportunity to provide comment on the exposure draft of the Aboriginal Heritage Amendment Bill 2014.

MCA Victoria provided input into the recent reviews of the Aboriginal Heritage Act (AH Act) and the Parliamentary Inquiry into Registered Aboriginal Parties (RAPs) and while the minerals industry is generally supportive of a number of the changes proposed, some concerns remain around the operability of proposed changes and their associated implications.

Comments are provided on the following:

  • Preliminary Aboriginal Heritage Test (PAHT)
  • Activity Advisory Groups (AAG)
  • Amending Cultural Heritage Management Plans (CHMPs)
  • Technical Heritage Advisor (THA) Accreditation
  • Aboriginal Heritage Officers
  • New offences and compliance measures
  • General comments

The minerals industry notes that further amendments are planned to the Aboriginal Heritage Act 2006, focusing on legislative proposals to increase Victorian Aboriginal Heritage Council and RAP functions and powers as outlined in the Victorian Government response to the Review of the Aboriginal Heritage Act 2006 and the Parliamentary Inquiry into the Establishment and Effectiveness of Registered Aboriginal Parties.  The minerals industry supports sustainable funding through budget allocation in order to continue the review process.

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