Media Release by The Hon Jenny Macklin MP

Government finalises five-year lease boundaries in NT Indigenous communities

The Australian Government has finalised the boundaries for all 64 five-year leases acquired as part of the Northern Territory Emergency Response (NTER).

A comprehensive survey of the lease areas has allowed the Government to accurately assess lease boundaries and exclude areas which are not essential to support the delivery of services as part of the NTER.

These revised lease boundaries more accurately reflect the areas being targeted for improvements to living conditions and delivery of government services.

This was recommended in the NTER Review released in October 2008.

The boundary changes, which will come into effect on 1 April 2009, will reduce the overall leased area by more than fifty per cent.

We are determined to improve the shocking living conditions in remote Northern Territory Indigenous communities.

Five-year leases have provided the foundation for better housing services which are crucial to the future viability and sustainability of remote communities.

The Government will pay rent for the leases, recognising that reasonable rent must be paid to the landowners.

We will continue to negotiate whole of township and long-term housing leases with communities across the Northern Territory.