Legislation & policies

The NSW Government is working to improve management of the state’s Crown land by implementing consolidated, modern and new legislation in 2018.

The Crown Land Management Act 2016 (the new Act) implements reforms identified through the comprehensive review of Crown land management and follows over four years of engagement with the community on the future of Crown land.

The new Act is being implemented in stages, providing an opportunity for our customers and stakeholders to prepare for the changes. Frequently asked questions on the commencement of the Act are available.

The department’s policies guide our decisions and actions in implementing the legislation.

From 19 March 2018

  • Parts of the Act which enable eligible Western land leaseholders to convert their lease to freehold title come into force.
  • All existing Crown land legislation remains in place until the rest of the new Act commences.

Later in 2018

  • The remaining provisions of the Act will commence
  • The following Acts will be wholly repealed:
    • Crown Lands Act 1989
    • Crown Lands (Continued Tenures) Act 1989
    • Hay Irrigation Act 1902
    • Irrigation Areas (Reduction of Rents) Act
    • Murrumbidgee Irrigation Areas Occupiers Relief Act
    • Orange Show Ground Act 1897
    • Public Reserves Management Fund Act 1987
    • Trustees of Schools of Arts Enabling Act 1902
    • Wentworth Irrigation Act 1890
    • Western Lands Act 1901
    • Western Lands Amendment Act 2009
  • Existing agreements and arrangements that will transition:
    • Any existing lease, licence or permit issued under current legislation will continue for its term when the new Act commences. After the remaining provisions in the new Act commence leases, licences and permits will be issued under the new Act.
    • Existing managers of Crown reserves will automatically be appointed as Crown land managers under the new Act and will continue to manage their reserves
  • Formal notification will be provided to confirm the date the remaining provisions of the Act commence.

New regulations to support the Act

The regulations provide clarity and certainty for Crown land managers, tenure holders, and users of Crown land, and information about how parts of the Act are to be implemented.

From 19 March only certain provisions, mainly relating to converting Western Lands leases to freehold are in force.

The Crown Land Management Regulation

A draft of the Crown Land Management Regulation 2018 was publicly exhibited for six weeks between 4 September and 15 October last year with 83 submissions received and considered.

Download the submissions (PDF, 19146.46 KB) and frequently asked questions on the regulations for more information.


Delegations support the operation of the Act by enabling departmental staff to carry out functions on behalf of the Minister for Lands and Forestry.