Central Land Council Annual Report 2016-2017


The Central Land Council aims to provide Aboriginal landowners with information, advice and support to enable them to manage their land in a sustainable and productive way.


Output 5.1 Distributions

Administer and distribute statutory, negotiated and other payments to the
traditional owners and other clients.

Receipts for third-party use of Aboriginal land are deposited in the land use trust account and are distributed only in accordance with council decisions. Funds are mainly distributed to Aboriginal associations incorporated under the Corporations (Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander) Act 2006 (CATSI Act) and must be paid to a corporation incorporated under that Act.

Pursuant to s.35C of the Land Rights Act, recipient corporations are required to provide the CLC with their financial statements and a written report containing the information specified. There is no statutory mechanism to enable enforcement of these reporting requirements other than where payments were made to a corporation pursuant to a determination. However, financial statements are publicly available on the Office of the Registrar of Indigenous Corporations website.

When funds are distributed to the recipient corporations, the CLC’s Aboriginal Associations Management Centre (AAMC) assists the corporations with the administration of their corporate and accounting obligations under the CATSI Act, and distribution of funds or benefits to or on behalf of their members. Corporations may engage the services of the AAMC on an opt-in basis, subject to an engagement agreement on cost recovery arrangements. The role with each corporation is specified in a letter of engagement confirmed at each annual general meeting. Total distributions to all corporations during 2016–17 was $17.7 million.


Table 16. Details of compliance to the CATSI Act and governance

Annual general meetings and directors’ meetings held/income distribution instructions taken


Directors’ meetings held


Income distribution instruction meetings held


Corporations’ statutory financial statements to be lodged with ORIC


Trust statements lodged with ACNC



The leasing of Aboriginal land continues to generate a significant amount of income for traditional owners. Leasing income that they have instructed be applied for the benefit of the community is incorporated into existing plans and priorities facilitated by the CLC’s community development program. The AAMC manages the distribution of leasing income when the traditional owners want to distribute this money among themselves.

Details of the traditional owner identification reports prepared by the CLC to facilitate distribution meetings are set out in Table 17.

Table 17. Traditional Owner Identification Reports prepared for administration and distribution of payments



Exploration and mining


Total traditional owner identification reports


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