Western Australia

WA Government introduces State's first cultural heritage policy

WEST Australian Heritage Minister John Castrilli today released the State's first cultural heritage policy, saying the policy demonstrates how much the government values the State's heritage.

"This policy establishes a framework to ensure a secure future for significant heritage places," Mr Castrilli said.

The State Cultural Heritage Policy contains a range of initiatives, including a major review of the Heritage of Western Australia Act 1990.
The policy aims to underpin sound practice in the conservation, management and adaptation of heritage places and promote awareness among owners of the benefits of conservation.

Mr Castrilli said that a key objective of the Policy is to ensure heritage legislation is open and transparent and simple to operate and understand.

The Minister said the first major achievement under the policy was providing improved protection for heritage-listed properties through increased penalties for unauthorised demolition or damage, which came into effect last month.

"The next significant initiative is the comprehensive review of the Heritage Act," he said, urging interested members of the community to provide their input.

The first phase of the review of the Heritage Act seeks feedback on the consultation paper, with public submissions open until Friday 10 June 2011.

A second phase will involve the preparation of a discussion paper, expected to be published in August 2011, which will be open for public comment for three months.

A copy of the consultation paper on the review of the Act is available from the Heritage Council of WA website at <http://www.heritage.wa.gov.au/>.

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