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The Aboriginal Affairs Planning Authority Act 1972 (WA) (AAPA) among other things established the Aboriginal Lands Trust (ALT) with responsibility for administering lands previously held by the Native Welfare Department and several other State government agencies. These properties are now collectively known as the ALT Estate. This is effectively a holding house for Aboriginal land, with the intent being that the land will be utilised in a sustainable manner for the benefit of Aboriginal people, and subject to suitable governance arrangements being in place, land will be transferred to Aboriginal organisations. On the establishment of the AAPA, the ALT Estate comprised 86 reserves. Since then 337 additional properties have been acquired, while 94 properties have been transferred to Aboriginal Corporations or other appropriate organisations.
Altogether, the 329 ALT properties (as at May 20, 2010) constitute approximately 11% of the State's land in area terms, and include reserves, leasehold and freehold tenure. The properties range in size and extend across Western Australia. The dataset supports the Land Register System which is used to assist in the management of ALT Estate properties. The dataset will be required until such time as all ALT properties are successfully transferred to Aboriginal people.
Of the 329 ALT Estate properties, 318 are owned by or leased to or held by the Aboriginal Lands Trust, and 11 properties (mostly freehold properties) remain owned or managed by the Aboriginal Affairs Planning Authority. The breakdown of the current 329 properties is:
- 254 Reserves, occupying 20,204,579 hectares
- 60 Freehold, occupying 7066 hectares
- 9 Special Leases, occupying 5,634,930 hectares
- 6 Pastoral Leases, occupying 1,099,343 hectares
Entry permits are required for entry onto or through those ALT reserves that are subject to Part III of the AAPA Act, loosely referred to as ‘Part 3’ Reserves. Approximately 32% of all ALT Reserves are so proclaimed.
For more information contact our office on 1300 651 077, or see www.daa.wa.gov.au.