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NLC calls for both sides to ‘build’ on homelands announcement

Posted: Wed, August 01, 2012

Northern Land Council (NLC) Chief Executive, Mr Kim Hill, has welcomed the increased funding commitment by the Northern Territory Government to maintain essential services to Territory homelands.

Today’s announcement by the Chief Minister will see the Northern Territory Government contribute a minimum $100 million over 10 years to service delivery for homelands. Alongside earlier Australian Government funding, this commitment will now boost total funding for service delivery to Outstations to more than $300 million over 10 years.

The continued funding will provide support for essential services such as access to reliable power, functioning water and sewerage systems.

'This announcement will provide Aboriginal peoples residing on their homelands with the service delivery certainty they have been asking for, and is a wise investment into the well-known long term health and conservation benefits of living on homelands,’ Mr Hill said.

While welcoming the increased funding, Mr Hill also expressed his disappointment at both the Territory and Australian Government’s refusal to allow this funding to be used for roads and new houses.

“Lack of infrastructure including telecommunications, problems with road access and maintenance and overcrowding are still significant issues for those living on homelands in the NLC region. The NLC will continue to lobby governments on these important issues.”

Mr Hill also cautioned both the Government and the Opposition in the lead-up to the election, by saying:

“Both sides of politics need to see their respective homelands funding commitments as a ‘building block’ on the way to a future with prosperous and sustainable living,”

“Working in partnership with Aboriginal people and their organisations is, without doubt, the best way to build respect and achieve policy outcomes.”

For a PDF version of the media release, click here.