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Review of the Crown Land Management Act 2016

We are seeking feedback to inform our review of the Crown Land Management Act 2016 (CLM Act). The CLM Act provides the legislative framework for the management and use of Crown land across NSW.

Download and read the Statutory Review of the Crown Land Management Act 2016 Discussion Paper (PDF, 872 KB)

How to have your say

Crown land managers, community groups, local Aboriginal land councils, native title holders, tenure holders, and members of the public are invited to have their say.

We have a prepared a discussion paper that sets out issues raised so far about key areas of the Act and identifies potential reform priorities and goals in these areas. It also poses questions to prompt feedback.

You can provide your feedback in a written submission in any of the following ways:

Consultation will be open for 6 weeks from Wednesday, 7 February to Tuesday, 19 March, 2024.  All submissions to be received by 11:59pm Tuesday, 19 March 2024.

Key dates

Consultation opens:Wednesday, 7 February 2024
Consultation closes:Tuesday, 19 March 2024
Review report table in Parliament:Before Monday, 1 July 2024

Webinar information sessions

We will be holding online information sessions to present the discussion paper and provide an opportunity for you to ask questions. We will also outline how you can provide your feedback via a written submission.

Please register to attend a webinar for one of the sessions below:

  • Monday, 19 February - 12:30 - 1:30pm
  • Monday, 19 February - 5:30 - 6:30pm

Why is the CLM Act being reviewed?

We are conducting a 5-year statutory review of the CLM Act to determine whether the policy objectives remain suitable, and whether the terms of the Act are helping us reach those objectives.

The review will also help us understand how well the Act is working and identify reforms that could strengthen and improve management of the Crown estate.

It’s an opportunity to ensure the Act continues to provide a strong and accountable framework for the use and management of Crown land, and delivers positive outcomes for our people, our environment, and our economy.

Under the CLM Act, the responsible Minister (the Minister for Lands and Property) is required to conduct a review of the CLM Act after 5 years of operation.

The review will involve:

  • undertaking a comprehensive review of the current Act
  • preparing and releasing a discussion paper for public consultation
  • analysing submissions received
  • preparing a final report on the outcome of the review
  • submitting the final report on the review findings in each House of NSW Parliament by 1 July 2024.

The review is to be undertaken as soon as possible after the period of 5 years from the commencement of this Act. A report on the outcome of the review is to be tabled in each House of Parliament within 12 months after the end of the period of 5 years.

Further information about the review is available in the Terms of Reference - Statutory five-year review of the Crown Land Management Act 2016 (PDF, 85 MB).

Frequently asked questions

What is the Crown Land Management Act 2016?

The Crown Land Management Act 2016 (CLM Act) provides the legislative framework for the management of Crown land. The Act commenced on 1 July 2018. 

The current objectives of the CLM Act are to:

  • provide for the ownership, use and management of the Crown land of New South Wales
  • provide clarity concerning the law applicable to Crown land
  • require environmental, social, cultural heritage and economic considerations to be taken into account in decision-making about Crown land
  • provide for the consistent, efficient, fair and transparent management of Crown land for the benefit of the people of New South Wales
  • facilitate the use of Crown land by the Aboriginal people of New South Wales because of the spiritual, social, cultural and economic importance of land to Aboriginal people and, where appropriate, to enable the co-management of dedicated or reserved Crown land
  • provide for the management of Crown land having regard to the principles of Crown land management.

The current principles of CLM Act are that:

  • environmental protection principles be observed in relation to the management and administration of Crown land
  • the natural resources of Crown land (including water, soil, flora, fauna and scenic quality) be conserved wherever possible
  • public use and enjoyment of appropriate Crown land be encouraged
  • where appropriate, multiple use of Crown land be encouraged
  • where appropriate, Crown land should be used and managed in such a way that both the land and its resources are sustained in perpetuity
  • Crown land be occupied, used, sold, leased, licensed or otherwise dealt with in the best interests of the State consistent with the above principles.

The CLM Act can be viewed in full on the NSW legislation website.

Why was the CLM Act created?
  • In 2014, the then-NSW Government conducted the first major review into Crown land in more than 25 years. One of the review’s key recommendations was the creation of one piece of legislation that covered Crown land management. 
  • This resulted in the CLM Act, which amalgamated 8 separate pieces of legislation into one overarching Act.
  • The CLM Act aimed to deliver a modern, streamlined and comprehensive legislative framework to manage Crown lands.
  • Other key focuses of the Act were to reduce red tape, complexity and duplication while supporting greater local decision-making and enhancing Aboriginal involvement in the management of Crown land.
Why is this review important?
  • The review will help us understand how well the Act is working and identify reforms that could strengthen and improve management of the Crown estate.
  • It provides an opportunity to ensure the Act continues to provide a strong and accountable framework for the use and management of Crown land, and delivers positive outcomes for our people, our environment, and our economy.
  • Potential improvements to the Act may include increasing flexibility to allow our portfolio to adapt to evolving needs, or reducing administrative burden for the community, volunteers and staff.  
How was the discussion paper developed?
  • To date, the review has involved extensive research on issues raise by stakeholders during the 5 years since the CLM Act’s implementation.
  • Since the beginning of 2023, the department has been undertaking extensive internal engagement with subject matter experts about how the Act is working in practice.
  • The department has also been reviewing stakeholder submissions received during the Crown Land 2031 strategic plan review, and the former Crown Land Commissioner’s 2021 evaluation of implementation of the CLM Act.
When will the results of the review be shared?
  • The Minister must table the final report on the outcome of the review to Parliament by 1 July 2024.   
  • After this occurs, the government will implement a response to the report, which could include making changes to the Act
How can I find out more

If you would like more information about the review process, please contact us:

Email: [email protected]

Phone: 1300 886 235