Review of commons trust laws completed

Media release | 21 April 2017

The NSW Government has completed the community consultation process on the law covering commons trusts and has decided not to change current arrangements.

Minister for Lands and Forestry Paul Toole said consultation on the law covering commons trusts opened for public comment earlier this year.

“Commons date back to colonial times, originally for small-scale grazing and watering of livestock, and remain in place today,” Mr Toole said.

“There are about 130 commons trusts in NSW that manage land used by commoners, who are eligible local residents and farmers.”

To be on the commoners’ roll, a person must generally reside in the district in which the common is located and not hold more than 20 hectares of land in that district.

The Government has reviewed the 119 submissions received through the commons consultation, which strongly favoured the maintenance of local control and management.

“We value the important role of commons trusts, who will continue to be responsible for the care, control and management of commons,” Mr Toole said.

The review of Commons Management Act 1989 was part of the Government’s comprehensive review of Crown land legislation.

Thousands of public submissions and hundreds of meetings with key stakeholders have helped to inform the new legislation.

Member for Hawkesbury Dominic Perrottet welcomed the decision, which will mean the historic importance of St Albans Commons Trust continues to be recognised.

“St Albans Commons Trust is one of the State’s oldest institutions and an integral part of the local community,” Mr Perrottet said.

“I am pleased that the voices of St Albans commoners were heard by the Government and this is a great outcome.”

Download the media release.