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Portal for
Assessment of 
Cultural heritage and native

IPWEA-QNT Services

NEW - Local Government Area (LGA) Landscape status report

$1,500 + GST

One-off Project Assessment

$1,200  + GST

Assessment Package

1 x LGA Landscape status report

2 x Project Assessments

$3,500 + GST (save $400) 

for more information please email

or call 07 3632 6811

The High Court of Australia handed down its findings in the first ever successful native title compensation case in March 2019, ordering the Northern Territory government to pay 2.5 million dollars in compensation for acts undertaking that impinged upon and affected the native title rights of Traditional Owners in one regional council within the Northern Territory jurisdiction. Since then, Native Title and Cultural Heritage considerations have become a rapidly growing area of concern for local government.


To avoid making the same errors as occurred in the Northern Territory case, local governments in Queensland and the Northern Territory need to be aware of their obligations in meeting the legislation. The first step to implementing an assessment process is to familiarise yourself with the native title and cultural heritage landscape of your local government area.

Local Government Area (LGA) Landscape Status Report - $1500 + GST

IPWEA-QNT offers a service in which we undertake a native title ‘footprint’ of any local government area. We issue a report of the landscape detailing the situation in relation to, though not restricted to, the matters listed below:

  • Native Title Determinations

  • Registered and Scheduled Native Title Claims

  • Indigenous Land Use Agreements

  • Cultural Heritage agreements and Management Plans

  • Relevant Aboriginal Party or Aboriginal Body Corporate

  • Search of Cultural Heritage Registers and Databases to Identify any objects of areas of cultural significance.

  • Identifying which sections of the Native Title Act 1994 are applicable to the particular work within any LGA

One-off Project Assessment - $1,200 + GST

It is becoming increasingly imperative for Local Government to undertake assessments of infrastructure and other projects to ensure they meet the required legislative process for native title and Aboriginal cultural heritage. Ideally all councils should be able to show assessments for every project undertaken. IPWEA-QNT offers one off project assessments in which we will provide a report of the conditions within particular land parcels that are affected by the proposed work. The resulting report will look at past court decisions on the project area in terms of native title determinations and claims, and any agreements that are in place with traditional owners. The report investigate the status of the land and the nature of the project and will make clear any parts of the planned activity that would be in breach of the legislation and what steps are appropriate to meet the legislative obligations so that the project can proceed.

Resources Community Infrastructure Fund (RCIF)

Applications for the state government's Resources Community Infrastructure Fund (RCIF) require a declaration that applicants have undertaken investigations to ensure there are no native title implications for the project which is the subject of the funding request. This requirement will continue to develop as a prerequisite for state and federal government grants.



The High Court’s award of $2.5 million compensation to native title holders in Timber Creek, a township in the Northern Territory, was the first time in history that the compensation provisions of the Native Title Act 1993 were given effect. For the first time, a value was calculated for the 'spiritual harm' and disconnection with country caused to the Indigenous traditional owners. The claim by the Ngaliwurru and Nungali native title holders, related to rights extinguished by the construction of roads and infrastructure by the Northern Territory government in the 1980s and 1990s. It has been described as the most important Native Title decision since Mabo in 1992 and offers a precedent for further compensation claims to be made.And progressively, similar claims have been made emphasising the importance of councils to be proactive before undertaking any form of public works for communities. 

The Timber Creek case is a wake-up call for local and state governments Australia wide. Spreading the news and ideas learnt from this case will not only assist governments and others to avoid financial harm but also help conserve native title rights and cultural heritage values. I’d never heard of terms like 'solatium' and had no knowledge of the difference between Past Acts and Future Acts. This session at the conference has focussed my attention on three important elements: follow the process diligently to ensure validity of works, keep robust records of works, and consider a contingency budget for native title. It was a very memorable experience, and I now have a good basis from which to learn more about NT & CH Compliance via these presentations and the developing portals.

Michael Williams, Cultural Heritage & Environmental Officer, GBA Consulting Engineers

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