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ENVIRONMENT PROTECTION AND BIODIVERSITY CONSERVATION ACT 1999 - SECT 324JH

Australian Heritage Council to assess places on finalised priority assessment list and give assessments to Minister

             (1)  In relation to each place included in the finalised priority assessment list for an assessment period, the Australian Heritage Council must (by the time required by section 324JI):

                     (a)  make a written assessment whether the place meets any of the National Heritage criteria; and

                     (b)  give to the Minister:

                              (i)  the written assessment (or a copy of it); and

                             (ii)  a copy of the comments referred to in paragraphs (2)(a) and (b) (whether or not they have all been taken into account under subsection (2)).

             (2)  In making an assessment in relation to a place, the Australian Heritage Council, subject to subsections (3) and (4):

                     (a)  must take into account the comments the Council receives in response to the notice under subsection 324JG(1) in relation to the place; and

                     (b)  may take into account the comments the Council receives in response to the opportunity referred to in paragraph (5)(c); and

                     (c)  may seek, and have regard to, information or advice from any source.

             (3)  The Australian Heritage Council is not required to take a comment referred to in paragraph (2)(a) into account if:

                     (a)  the Council does not receive the comment until after the cut-off date specified in the notice under subsection 324JG(1) in relation to the place; or

                     (b)  the Council considers that regulations referred to in paragraph 324JG(4)(b) have not been complied with in relation to the comment.

             (4)  In making an assessment, the Australian Heritage Council must not consider any matter that does not relate to the question whether the place meets any of the National Heritage criteria.

             (5)  If, in making an assessment, the Australian Heritage Council considers that a place might have one or more National Heritage values, the Council must:

                     (a)  take all practicable steps:

                              (i)  to identify each person who is an owner or occupier of all or part of the place; and

                             (ii)  if the Council considers the place might have an indigenous heritage value--to identify each Indigenous person who has rights or interests in all or part of the place; and

                     (b)  take all practicable steps to advise each person identified that the Council is assessing whether the place meets any of the National Heritage criteria; and

                     (c)  give persons advised at least 20 business days to comment in writing whether the place should be included in the National Heritage List.

             (6)  If the Australian Heritage Council is satisfied that there are likely to be at least 50 persons referred to in subparagraph (5)(a)(i), the Council may satisfy the requirements of subsection (5) in relation to those persons by including the information referred to in paragraphs (5)(b) and (c) in one or more of the following:

                     (a)  advertisements in a newspaper, or newspapers, circulating in the area in which the place is located;

                     (b)  letters addressed to "The owner or occupier" and left at all the premises that are wholly or partly within the place;

                     (c)  displays in public buildings at or near the place.

             (7)  If:

                     (a)  the Australian Heritage Council considers that the place might have an indigenous heritage value; and

                     (b)  there are Indigenous persons who:

                              (i)  have rights or interests in all or part of the place; and

                             (ii)  are neither owners nor occupiers of all or part of the place; and

                     (c)  the Australian Heritage Council is satisfied that there is a body, or there are bodies, that can appropriately represent those Indigenous persons in relation to those rights and interests;

the Australian Heritage Council may satisfy the requirements of subsection (5) in relation to those Indigenous persons by giving the information referred to in paragraphs (5)(b) and (c) to that body or those bodies.



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