The object of the Act is to make provision for the conservation, preservation and protection of Queensland's cultural heritage.
The Act makes provision for the conservation of Queensland's cultural heritage by:
- establishing the Queensland Heritage Council
- establishing a register of places of cultural heritage significance
- regulating development of registered places
- providing for heritage agreements between the Minister and owners of registered places
- protecting and conserving submerged objects of cultural heritage significance
- regulating the excavation of sites that contain, or may contain, artefacts of cultural heritage significance
- protecting places of cultural heritage significance and providing appropriate powers of protection and enforcement.
Note: The Act does not cover issues relating to indigenous heritage.
The following Subordinate Legislation should be examined:
- Queensland Heritage Regulation 2003
Compliance Mechanisms and Penalties:
Breaches of the Act can result in fines being imposed by the court. In addition, the court can also order the person to make good, to the satisfaction of the Minister, any damage caused in committing the offence.
A convicted person can also have a non-development order imposed on a site by the Minister. Such orders are attached to the land and are binding on the owner or occupier at the date of the order, as well as on all subsequent owner or occupiers while the order is in force.
To protect a place of cultural heritage significance, the Minister can issue a stop order prohibiting any work or activity that may reduce the cultural heritage significance of the place. The stop order operates for 40 business days from the time of service.
The penalty for contravening a stop work or non development order is a maximum of 17000 penalty units.
Review or Appeal Mechanisms:
Representations about decisions made in relation to a development application in a Queensland Heritage Place under the Integrated Development Assessment System (IDAS) can be made under the relevant provision of the Sustainable Planning Act 2009 and its Regulations.
An appeal against a decision by the Chief Executive relating to the entry into a protected historical archaeological area or permission to carry out an historical archaeological study may be made to the Planning and Environment Court within 20 business days of the receiving notice of the decision.
An objection to a decision to register (or not register) a place in the Heritage Register can be made, in the first instance, to the Queensland Heritage Council. The Council will appoint an independent assessor who will report back to the Council for determination.
If dissatisfied with the Council's decision an appeal can be made to the Planning and Environment Court.