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Indigenous bargains struck in Wheatbelt

A COALITION of 16 Wheatbelt councils has signed a groundbreaking Indigenous Land Use Agreement covering more than 40,000 square kilometres. The ILUA is said to establish a simpler land management system that helps bolster the economic development land in the region while protecting Aboriginal sites and minimising the risk of Crown or private prosecution. Other signatories include the South West Aboriginal Land and Sea Council and five Noongar Native Title claim groups, who are in the process of signing up. The Western Australian Government is yet to sign the agreement. The Central Country Zone of the WA Local Government Association says a key incentive for entry into the ILUA is the replacement of the Native Title Act’s “future act” process with a cultural heritage management process for all land tenures. In addition, SWALSC and the WA Local Government Association have entered a memorandum of understanding encouraging ILUAs.

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