Notice under the Native Title Act – national park estate covered by a native title application

National Parks and Wildlife Service is seeking your feedback on a proposed native title agreement with the Widjabul Wia-bal People.

Notice is given on the proposal to make an agreement for the pourposes with section 47C(6)(a) of the Native Title Act 1993 (Commonwealth) in relation to parts of parks and reserves in northern NSW. This notice is to give any interested persons an opportunity to comment on the proposed agreement.

The proposed agreement is subject to the registration of an Indigenous Land Use Agreement between the State and Widjabul Wia-bal that addresses the coexistence of native title rights, with park management and public use in the Widjabul Wia-bal claim area, which includes the proposed agreement area.

Proposed agreement description

The Attorney General, as State Minister responsible for native title in New South Wales, is proposing, at least 3 months from the date of this notice, to enter into an agreement under section 47C of the Native Title Act 1993 (Commonwealth) (the proposed agreement) with the Widjabal Wia-bal as one part of a comprehensive settlement of their native title determination application which they commenced in the Federal Court of Australia.

Should the Federal Court make a determination of native title which includes an agreement under section 47C with the Attorney General, any historical extinguishment of native title is to be disregarded in the proposed agreement area.

Proposed agreement area description

The proposed agreement area will cover parts of the national park estate in northern NSW within the Widjabul Wia-bal claim area, where native title has been historically extinguished, including areas subject to public works:

  • Boatharbour Nature Reserve
  • Tuckean Nature Reserve
  • Muckleewee Mountain Nature Reserve
  • Goonengerry National Park
  • Victoria Park Nature Reserve
  • Mount Jerusalem National Park
  • Nightcap National Park
  • Davis Scrub Nature Reserve
  • Snows Gully Nature Reserve
  • Tucki Tucki Nature Reserve
  • Andrew Johnson Big Scrub Nature Reserve
  • Whian Whian State Conservation Area.

Effect of the proposed agreement description

Under the proposed agreement, the National Parks and Wildlife Service will continue to operate and manage the national park estate. If made, the determination of native title will not affect public access or any existing valid interests (such as leases or licences) in relation to the proposed agreement area. It will also not affect the continued reservation of the national parks estate or access to, or operation of, public works in the park estate.

Map showing the lots where previous extinguishment may be disregarded.

Native Title Determination Application map

Download Native Title Determination Application map (PDF 5.0MB)

Download

The areas listed in Table 1 and 2 below represent the proposed agreement area and are identified on the map on the website by the relevant ID numbers allocated.

Note: An updated map of the areas in Table 2 will be included on the website to include these additional 18 parcels of land.

Table 1 – Parcels notified on 17 November 2021

Table 1 lists the lot and DP numbers of the proposed agreement area notified on 17 November 2021.

ID Folio Identifier National Park
747 1/806694 Boatharbour Nature Reserve
Pt 754 129/755691 Tuckean Nature Reserve
755 132/755691 Tuckean Nature Reserve
756 144/755691 Tuckean Nature Reserve
Pt 757 126/755691 Tuckean Nature Reserve
Pt 758 130/755691 Tuckean Nature Reserve
759 127/755691 Tuckean Nature Reserve
760 131/755691 Tuckean Nature Reserve
761 135/755691 Tuckean Nature Reserve
762 143/755691 Tuckean Nature Reserve
763 147/755691 Tuckean Nature Reserve
768 133/755691 Tuckean Nature Reserve
770 134/755691 Tuckean Nature Reserve
771 93/755691 Tuckean Nature Reserve
772 125/755691 Tuckean Nature Reserve
774 Cadastral Number 104039770 Tuckean Nature Reserve
775 Cadastral Number 104406629 Tuckean Nature Reserve
776 Cadastral Number 104039848 Tuckean Nature Reserve
783 43/755693 Muckleewee Mountain Nature Reserve
784 89/755693 Bungabbee State Forest / Muckleewee Mountain Nature Reserve
Pt 791 Cadastral Number 104189557 Muckleewee Mountain Nature Reserve
794 1/230291 Andrew Johnston Big Scrub Nature Reserve
798 1/712828 Goonengerry National Park
799 90/755712 Goonengerry National Park
800 1/123317 Goonengerry National Park
801 91/755712 Goonengerry National Park
802 75/755712 Goonengerry National Park
808 1/125323 Victoria Park Nature Reserve
809 137/755720 Tuckean Nature Reserve
812 1/1097962 Mount Jerusalem National Park
815 72/755739 Nightcap National Park
816 89/755739 Nightcap National Park
817 82/755739 Nightcap National Park
818 1/1178152 Mount Nardi, Nightcap National Park
Pt 819 2/1178152 Nightcap National Park
822 31/755743 Mount Jerusalem National Park
836 Unidentified Mount Jerusalem National Park
837 1/603080 Davis Scrub Nature Reserve
838 121/755746 Tucki Tucki Nature Reserve
839 124/755746 Tucki Tucki Nature Reserve
844 2/808419 Snows Gully Nature Reserve
845 55/755752 Nightcap National Park
846 5/821941 Whian Whian State Conservation Area
848 7/821941 Whian Whian State Conservation Area
849 8/821941 Whian Whian State Conservation Area
850 3/808304 Snows Gully Nature Reserve
851 5/249043 Nightcap National Park
852 4/755752 Nightcap National Park/Whian Whian State Conservation Area
853 6/821941 Whian Whian State Conservation Area
854 64/755752 Nightcap National Park/Whian Whian State Conservation Area
855 31/755752 Nightcap National Park/Whian Whian State Conservation Area
Pt 856 98/728194 Nightcap National Park
857 1/755752 Nightcap National Park/Whian Whian State Conservation Area
865 Cadastral Number 100778047 Nightcap National Park
878 Cadastral Number 100002506 Nightcap National Park
890 Cadastral Number 103685824 Nightcap National Park
893 Cadastral Number 106709313 Nightcap National Park/Whian Whian State Conservation Area

Table 2 – Parcels notified on 25 November 2021

Table 2 lists additional lot and DP numbers in the proposed agreement area.

ID Folio Identifier National Park
734 Cadastral Number 105203966 Mount Nardi, Nightcap National Park
793 Cadastral Number 107200654 Bungabbee State Forest/Muckleewee Mountain Nature Reserve
795 Cadastral Number 107019614 Andrew Johnston Big Scrub Nature Reserve
805 Cadastral Number 107018948 Mebbin National Park
807 Cadastral Number 7001/1063053 Victoria Park Nature Reserve
820 Cadastral Number 105051432 Mount Nardi, Nightcap National Park
821 Cadastral Number 105436971 Nightcap National Park
880 Cadastral Number 105437024 Nightcap National Park
881 Cadastral Number 105567098 Nightcap National Park/Whian Whian State Conservation Area
882 Cadastral Number 105606725 Nightcap National Park/Whian Whian State Conservation Area
883 Cadastral Number 106732315 Nightcap National Park/Whian Whian State Conservation Area
887 Cadastral Number 104406630 Tuckean Nature Reserve
  Cadastral Number 105544375 Goonengerry National Park
  Cadastral Number 107019477 Goonengerry National Park
  Cadastral Number 171230422 Nightcap National Park/Whian Whian State Conservation Area
  Cadastral Number 107197768 Goonengerry National Park
  Cadastral Number 106732200 Bungabbee State Forest/Muckleewee Mountain Nature Reserve
  Cadastral Number 105085732 Goonengerry National Park

Opportunities to comment

Comments are invited from interested persons on the proposed section 47C agreement for a period of 3 months from the date of this notification (that is, until 3 March, 2022).

A public consultation session regarding the proposed agreement will be held in Lismore in early February 2022. Interested persons are invited to attend and register their interest.

Have your say

Public exhibition is from 17 November 2021 to 3 March 2022.

In accordance with section 47C(6)(b) of the Native Title Act 1993, interested persons may comment on the proposed agreement. Comments should be in writing and can be submitted up until 3 March 2022.

You can provide your written submission in any of the following ways:

  • Post your written submission to:
    National Parks and Wildlife Service
    PO Box 127
    Murwillumbah NSW 2484
  • Email your submission to: nativetitle.s47C@environment.nsw.gov.au
  • Use the online form below.

While all submissions count, they are most effective when we understand your ideas and the outcomes you want for park management. Some suggestions to help you write your submission are:

  • Write clearly and be specific about the issues that are of concern to you.
  • Note which parks and or reserves in the proposed agreement area your comments relate to.
  • Give reasoning in support of your points – this makes it easier for us to consider your ideas and will help avoid misinterpretation.
  • Tell us specifically what you agree/disagree with and why you agree/disagree.
  • Suggest solutions or alternatives to managing the issue if you can.
Your details




Your comments on the proposed agreement



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You are invited to register your interest to attend a public consultation session to be held in Lismore in early February 2022 in the online form below.

Register your interest





The information you provide in this form will only be used for the purpose for which it was collected. By submitting, you consent to storage, use, and disclosure of your personal information in accordance with our privacy policy. You can request access and amendment of your personal information.

The Native Title Legislation Amendment Act 2021 amends the Native Title Act 1993 (Cth) by including a new provision, section 47C, which enables the NSW Government and native title holders to agree to disregard prior extinguishment, and confirm recognition, of native title over park areas. An agreement under section 47C to disregard extinguishment of native title over national parks and reserves would result in native title holders being able to exercise their native title rights, as determined by the Federal Court, across a larger area of the national park estate. This contributes to Closing the Gap targets.

A section 47C agreement can be negotiated when settling native title claims or after a determination of native title has been made by the Federal Court, which would involve applying to the Federal Court to amend the original determination. The agreement must go through a public notification process, with a three-month period for public comment.

Native title rights are the legally recognised rights of native title holders in land and waters based on Aboriginal people's traditional laws and customs. While each determination of native title will vary to reflect the rights and interests that are recognised, native title often includes rights to access and use land and waters for a variety of purposes, including the right to hunt, gather, fish, camp, protect places and sites of significance, and teach and pass on knowledge. Aboriginal people may make an application to the Federal Court under the Native Title Act 1993 (Commonwealth) for a determination that recognises native title. The native title applicants provide evidence about their traditional laws and customs and the native title rights and interests being claimed. The NSW Government provides evidence about where native title has been extinguished by previous Government acts, such as the creation of freehold title, certain leaseholds and public works. Native title claims may be resolved though contested litigation, though many claim are resolved through negotiations between the NSW Government, native title claimants and other interested parties for a determination of native title by consent. Often the NSW Government and native title claimants will seek to negotiate an indigenous land use agreement.

Where native title is recognised by the Federal Court, the determination sets out who holds the native title rights, what rights are recognised, where they exist and where they have been extinguished, and how native title rights co-exist with other rights and interests in the determination area.

National parks include areas where native title is recognised and where it has been extinguished.

There are many parks in New South Wales, where native title rights have been recognised by the Federal Court.

Where native title is recognised, native title rights co-exist with other interests within the park, meaning:

  • parks continue to be managed and used as parks
  • public access and use of parks continues
  • native title holders have legally recognised rights to access the parks and practice their culture in parks, including camping and using resources.

At the end of the public comment period the NSW Government will review all comments received and take them into consideration when deciding whether to enter into the section 47C agreement.