Territory Stories

The Council of Territory Co-operation Committee First Report February 2010



The Council of Territory Co-operation Committee First Report February 2010

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Tabled paper 714


Tabled papers for 11th Assembly 2008 - 2012; Tabled papers; ParliamentNT




Tabled By Gerard Wood


Made available by the Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory under Standing Order 240. Where copyright subsists with a third party it remains with the original owner and permission may be required to reuse the material.




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Council of Territory Co-operation 58 First Report Working Future The Country Liberals support the hub and spoke model proposed by the Working Future system. It is early days in the roll out of this program and therefore it is difficult to assess the effectiveness of the program. Clearly the program is driven by the capacity of the Territory and the Federal Government to deliver services in the bush and that harsh economic reality is understood and accepted by the Country Liberals. The Country Liberals also commend the appointment of Bob Beadman as the NT CoordinatorGeneral. It is disappointing however, that the Land Councils had chosen to substantially exclude themselves from the process when they have such a pivotal role in the area. The CTC received evidence from three land councils and each of them described themselves as a statutory authority of the Commonwealth. The NLC went on to correctly state that they represented the wishes and desires of the traditional owners. Interchangeably however, they saw fit to make comments on areas outside of their statutory scope as they are, after all, essentially land managers for the Traditional Owners of land. While the Country Liberals accept that their role has extended into areas such as commenting on education and health, then the Country Liberals feel that if they seek to make such comments they should also be qualified to answer questions on their roles in such areas. Disappointingly, they chose to make comments about government policy, on occasions with overt political overtones, but evade questions by claiming they were only capable of responding within the areas of their statutory limitations. 195 The Country Liberals acknowledge the model of joint co-operation between the Federal and Territory Governments with regard to this policy and considers it long overdue. However, the absence of the Land Councils in taking an active part in this process removes probably the most crucial component for a successful future for Aboriginal people. The possession of a 12th of Australias landmass under inalienable freehold should be a vehicle for driving substantial wealth, employment and self determination, however, this has not been achieved because of an almost ultra conservative approach by land owners. The Country Liberals acknowledge that with Anindilyakwa, Tiwi and the Northern Land Councils there is a substantial change in their commercial orientation. The Country Liberals welcome the announcement by the NLC at Wadeye that they are reviewing their approach and waits with anticipation announcements and briefings as to what the re-alignment of policy will engender. Nevertheless, these organisations are still excluded from what should be a very important process. 195 The Country Liberals accept that some of the transcript material is yet to be proofed, supporting these assertions, by the people who made them. However, the Country Liberals are sufficiently confident of their records to believe that no substantive changes will follow.

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