Australian Heritage Commission, 2000
- 5.1 Principal planned outcome
- 5.2 Strategies to implement planned outcome
- 5.3 Output — Policy advice on National Estate issues
- 5.4 Output — Administration of the Australian Heritage Commission Act
- 5.5 Output — Provision of grants
A new heritage identification and protection regime has been proposed by the Government to clarify and distinguish the roles of the Commonwealth and the States and Territories. The Government has committed itself to a continuing role for the Australian Heritage Commission as the Commonwealth’s principal heritage advisory body.
Increased community appreciation of the breadth and value of the National Estate and of the importance of transmitting it in good condition to future generations.
- Advise the Minister for the Environment and Heritage and other key stakeholders, in a clear and timely manner, about all matters relating to the National Estate.
- Strategically identify places for inclusion in the Register of the National Estate, and improve data and information systems.
- Provide conservation advice on actions that might affect heritage places.
- Ensure adherence to the requirements of the Australian Heritage Commission Act 1975 and the Commonwealth Authorities and Companies Act 1997.
- Provide corporate and secretarial support for the operation of the Commission.
- Administer the continuing National Estate Grants Program and advise on projects under other heritage-related grants programs.
The Australian Heritage Commission will provide policy advice on National Estate issues to a high level of satisfaction of the Minister for the Environment and Heritage, commissioners and other stakeholders. Advice on grant policy will be prepared to a high level of satisfaction of the Minister for the Environment and Heritage.
In fulfilling its policy advice responsibilities on National Estate issues in the 1999–2000 financial year, the Australian Heritage Commission will undertake one program review and prepare 150 briefs, five policy papers and 700 pieces of policy advice.
|One Program Review||2||200%||-|
|150 briefs||209||140%||Includes 140 ministerial briefs and ministerial briefs with letters|
|Five Policy Papers||2||40%||-|
|700 Pieces of policy advice||626||89%||-|
Assessments involving community consultation are undertaken in an open, transparent and inclusive manner.
Objections to nominations will be dealt with in a timely and appropriate manner and requests for advice under the Australian Heritage Commission Act will be answered within 28 days.
The Commission will prepare all materials to a high level of accuracy for statutory notices publishing and textual and spatial database information.
Pursuant to the above, in the 1999–2000 financial year the Commission will assess 150 places (including the upgrading of Statements of Significance), process 20 objections, prepare 800 pieces of advice and publish two sets of public notices. Four thousand textual database records will be upgraded and 2,000 places digitally plotted.
- Assessments involving community consultation
- Description of Register of the National Estate-based projects undertaken by the Commission in 1999–2000
|150 places assessed including upgrading of Statements of Significance||179||119%||Comprising 140 nominations 39 upgrades|
|20 objections processed||28||140%||-|
|800 pieces of advice||1,586||198%||1,432 Commonwealth
154 non Commonwealth
|2 sets of public notices published per annum||2||100%||-|
|4,000 textual databases records updated||3,600||90%||-|
|2,000 spatial databases records created or upgraded||2,154||108%||1,013 digitally added or altered and 1,141 plotted -- added or altered.|
The Commission has continued its policy of priority and strategic assessments of nominations for the Register of the National Estate. In the 1999–2000 financial year, priorities included places of potential national significance, Commonwealth-owned places, places under threat, places subject to applications for Commonwealth funding, places related to Federation and places identified as a result of Commonwealth- funded systematic research.
The Commission has continued to implement its liaison policy which has greatly improved the process leading to listing in the Register of the National Estate by undertaking earlier and wider consultation with owners and stakeholders. The policy provides information to owners and stakeholders about the process of assessment, promotes awareness of heritage values and encourages support for, and participation in, heritage conservation.
In line with the policy, technical staff sought comment on draft nomination assessments from relevant stakeholders, including landowners. This information was presented to the Commission as it considered particular nominations. This early liaison assisted the Commission in making decisions about entering places in the Register, and reduced the number of objections, particularly in the historic environment.
The Commission considered objections relating to 28 places during the 1999–2000 financial year. To date all objections have been resolved by the Commission within the statutory timeframe. Sixteen objections received during 1999–2000 remain unresolved at 30 June 2000.
Description of Register of the National Estate-based projects undertaken by the Commission in 1999–2000
- Paroo Integrated Heritage Assessment Project
- Women's Heritage Places Project
- Snowy Mountains Scheme Assessment
- Federation Places
The Commission initiated a project to develop better methods of conveying the relationship between cultural and natural heritage. The Paroo Integrated Heritage Assessment Project assessed the natural, historic and Indigenous heritage values of a 76,000km2 catchment in western New South Wales and Queensland. The area contains one of the last unregulated rivers in the Murray-Darling Basin and illustrates the dynamic relationship between human beings and water in a semi-arid environment, from Indigenous relationships with the land to the development of the pastoral industry. The outcomes of the project can be accessed through the Environment Australia web site at www.ahc.gov.au/heritage/explore/ paroo/index.html.
A project is being funded to provide a contextual history of women’s employment and professionalism within Australia, and to develop an indicative list of associated places to assist in the identification and assessment of places that represent women’s history and heritage.
A project is being funded to undertake a study of the historic cultural heritage values of the Snowy Mountains Scheme. Completed in 1974, it is one of the largest engineering schemes ever undertaken in Australia, and is nationally important for its engineering achievements. Between 1949 and 1974, the scheme employed over 100,000 people from 30 countries, and is significant in the history of Australia’s post-World War II migration. This project is in response to strong community interest and coincides with the fiftieth anniversary of the scheme’s commencement in November 1949.
In preparation for Centenary of Federation celebrations, a program of assessments and upgrades of places with connections to the Federation story is currently being undertaken. A consultancy, funded by the NEGP and managed by Heritage Victoria, was undertaken in line with the Heritage Ministers’ Federation Places Strategy.
The report from this consultancy provides nomination and upgrade information for over 100 places with Federation associations, including:
- the Tenterfield School of the Arts, where Henry Parkes made the famous ‘Tenterfield Oration’ in 1889;
- the HMVS Cerberus, now a breakwater off Melbourne’s coastline, which was once the flagship of Victoria’s Colonial Navy; and
- the Commonwealth Small Arms Factory, Lithgow — one of the earliest expressions of the Commonwealth’s desire to be self-sufficient in defence.
These listings and upgrades will continue until the end of 2001, and will be used by the Commission as part of a Federation places promotional campaign.
The Commission has also provided direct input to advisory panels and bodies for a number of important national estate places:
- the Kingston and Arthur Vale Historic Area Management Board;
- the AAP-Mawson’s Huts Foundation;
- the Port Arthur Historic Site Management Authority Advisory Heritage Panel; and
- the Australian Alps Liaison Committee’s Cultural Heritage Working Group.
All outstanding NEGP grants will be administered in accordance with best practice guidelines. Funds allocated for NEGP grants in 1999–2000 will be transferred to the Cultural Heritage Projects Program at Additional Estimates 1999–2000.
Twenty-five continuing projects will be managed in 1999–2000 and funds allocated for NEGP grants totalling $800,000 will be transferred to the Cultural Heritage Projects Program.
Cultural Heritage Projects Program – Carnarvon One Mile Jetty
During the year, all residual grants under the national component of the former NEGP were administered in accordance with Australian National Audit Office best practice guidelines, with all but 24 grants finalised and fully acquitted by year’s end. All funds allocated for 1999–2000 NEGP grants were transferred to the Cultural Heritage Projects Program at Additional Estimates 1999–2000.
During 1999–2000, the Minister for the Environment and Heritage, Senator Robert Hill, asked the Commission to be involved in the assessment of applications made under the new Commonwealth Cultural Heritage Projects Program. The program replaces the former NEGP and tax incentive scheme and is open to community organisations, local government authorities and private owners of heritage properties to assist them in conserving places of national significance.
The Commission assessed the 401 applications received and referred its recommendations to the Minister along with the Commission’s section 30 advice on the projects and the program. The Minister considered this advice with other advice received from his department and provided financial assistance to 44 projects valued at $3.25 million.
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