Territory Stories

Debates Day 2 - Wednesday 17 May 1995



Debates Day 2 - Wednesday 17 May 1995

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Parliamentary Record 10


Debates for 7th Assembly 1994 - 1997; ParliamentNT; Parliamentary Record; 7th Assembly 1994 - 1997




Made available by the Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory





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Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory

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Attribution International 4.0 (CC BY 4.0)

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Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory



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DEBATES - Wednesday 17 May 1995 Prior to the introduction of the Pastoral Land Act, the governments role in administering pastoral leases focused on prescriptive development covenants and ensuring property infrastructure was developed and minimum herd numbers were maintained. The government recognised that these property development decisions are more properly the responsibility of the pastoral lessee and that the governments role should be to ensure that pastoral land is well-managed and its productive capacity is sustained for future generations. The emphasis in Australia today is in on how government and industry manage the pastoral estate. Landcare is now an expression well-recognised throughout the general community and landcare is the objective of the Northern Territory Pastoral Land Board. Under the Pastoral Land Act, the Pastoral Land Board has designed a monitoring system which will gather information relating to the state of Territory pastoral lands at 2 levels. Information is being collected at the landholder level, with the involvement of the pastoralists and their managers, and a second tier has been designed where government agencies will collect regional information on a more scientific basis. As that flow of information becomes more complete, successive reports for the board will become increasingly informative on the utilisation and management of pastoral leases and the state of those lands. The first tier of the monitoring system encourages pastoral lessees to become actively involved in the monitoring process and has been designed to increase lessee awareness of rangeland conditions. From this increased awareness, sound management practices will follow. This is landcare in practice. The board, in its new format, is in only its third year of operation yet it has already won praise from prominent interstate pastoral land administration professionals and state governments for the manner in which it has approached its statutory functions, particularly rangeland monitoring under section 29 of the Pastoral Land Act. In designing a 2-tiered system, the Pastoral Land Board has recognised that the involvement of pastoral lessees is fundamental to the success of any rangeland monitoring program. Mr Speaker, I move that the Assembly take note of the report. Mr STIRLING (Nhulunbuy): Mr Speaker, I welcome the tabling of this annual report by the minister and I share his view that the full report should be available for public information. I have flicked through it and a fair amount of the report appears to deal with the setting up of a monitoring system for Northern Territory pastoral lands which, as the minister stated, is a vital part of landcare. The Pastoral Land Plan Board reports to the minister at least annually on its operations and on the general condition of pastoral land. It has a large role in planning for and carrying out monitoring of conditions and use of pastoral land including numbers of stock, their effect on the land and the effects of feral animals. It may have a range of matters referred to it by the minister at any time for advice and recommendation. It met 6 times between August 1993 and June 1994. It visited Victoria River Downs in October 1993 and the Barkly in May 1994. The Pastoral Land Board has a Pastoral Land Board Advisory Committee which was set up in 1992 to assist it with the provision of information and for the design of a rangeland monitoring system. The report contains details of the monitoring that was carried out by pastoral land officers of the Department of Lands, Housing and Local Government. By June 1995, the 3279