In a first for the state, the NSW Government has released a set of planning measures to assist the Darkinjung Local Aboriginal Land Council (Darkinjung) achieve better economic outcomes from its land.

The Central Coast community has been invited to have its say on the Darkinjung Delivery Framework (DDF) Consultation Paper that proposes eight inter-related actions to help Darkinjung overcome hurdles to develop its land.

Coordinator General for the Central Coast, Lee Shearer, says the series of planning measures are leading the way in their breadth, depth and ambition to bring about positive outcomes for Aboriginal people that will benefit the entire Central Coast region.

“This work implements a key Direction of the Central Coast Regional Plan 2036 (Regional Plan) - to strengthen the economic self-determination of Aboriginal communities.”

“The Regional Plan recognises that encouraging Aboriginal people to gain economic benefit from their land will support broader regional development, environmental and social outcomes,” she says.

Darkinjung is one of 120 Local Aboriginal Land Councils in NSW established under the Aboriginal Land Rights (ALR) Act 1983.

The ALR Act was passed by the NSW Parliament to establish a network of Aboriginal Land Councils to acquire and manage land as an economic base for Aboriginal communities, as compensation for historic dispossession and in recognition of their ongoing disadvantage.

In 2016 the NSW Parliament’s Standing Committee on State Development Inquiry into Economic Development in Aboriginal Communities recommended that the planning system needed to better accommodate aspirations of the ALR Act.

“Darkinjung is the largest non-Government landowner on the Central Coast which makes them an ideal pilot.”

Darkinjung chairman Matthew West says, “These are profound measures with the potential to bring about positive outcomes for our people for generations to come.”

The DDF Consultation Paper is on public exhibition until 5pm Friday 14 December 2018.