DELWP lights the way with solar energy facility guidelines

The Victorian government has today released the new Solar Energy Facilities – Design and Development Guideline (Guidelines), reflecting the similar policy approach to wind energy facilities.A planning scheme amendment is now expected to occur imminently to introduce the Guidelines to the Victoria Planning Provisions which will require all applicants for a solar energy facility to, as relevant, consider and follow the Guidelines prior to, and when, making a planning permit application. Read more

Native Title Act Reforms

On 21 February 2019, the Commonwealth government introduced the Native Title Legislation Amendment Bill 2019 (Cth) (Bill) to amend (amongst other legislation) the Native Title Act 1993 (Cth) (NTA). The proposed amendments to the NTA are the most substantive since the ‘Wik’ amendments in 1998. To assist proponents in understanding the potential impact of the Bill, we have prepared a table that sets out proposed key amendments with the likely implications for existing and future development. Read more

A Methodology for the Calculation of Native Title Compensation

On 13 March 2019, the High Court handed down its first decision on native title compensation in ‘Timber Creek’ [2019] HCA 7 (Timber Creek).The High Court’s decision is a measured reflection of the need for Australian law to evolve in a manner that acknowledges, recognises and accommodates the diversity and individuality of native title in Australia. The majority judgment sensibly navigates the difficult task of applying common law legal concepts, such as compensation, freehold value, economic loss and solatium, in the context of traditional rights and interests, and connection to country. Read more