Annual Report 2010-2011

Published: December, 2011

Output 5.2 Administer Land Trusts

Aboriginal land is formally held by Land Trusts - made up of Aboriginal people who hold the title for the benefit of all the traditional owners and people with traditional interests in the land.

Aboriginal Land Trusts are statutory entities and usually consist of a chairperson and not less than three members who hold office for periods not exceeding five years. Land trust members are usually traditional Aboriginal owners of the land held in trust.
The functions of a land trust are to hold title to land, exercise powers to acquire, hold and dispose of real and personal property for the benefit of the traditional landowners and where land is granted in a deed of grant held in escrow, to acquire the estates and interests of other persons with a view of gaining the delivery of the title to the land trust.
A land trust can only deal with the land in ways that the Land Council directs it to, but land councils can only direct land trusts to deal in land in ways that the traditional owners have determined.
To assist the Land Trusts the CLC:

  • Provides secure storage for Deeds of Grant in trust and common seals
  • Maintains a register of common seals and trustees
  • Ensures membership is up to date and complies with the Aboriginal Land Rights Act
  •  Registers agreements and
  •  Conducts consultations.


There are 85 land trusts in the CLC’s region.
Five new Aboriginal Land Trusts were created in 2010 -2011:

  • Alkeperre-Atwarte Ayepe-Arenye Arleye Aboriginal Land Trust
  • Atwengerrpe Aboriginal Land Trust
  • Irrinjirrinjirri Aboriginal Land Trust
  • Lhere Pirnte Aboriginal Land Trust
  •  Tyurretye Aboriginal Land Trust (see output 2.1 for more details )