(1) Subject to this Part, the Minister may, on application or by auction, public tender or ballot, lease an area of public water land for use for aquaculture.(2) A lease of an area may be of the whole area or may be limited to a stratum of the area.(3) A lease must specify the species of fish or marine vegetation authorised to be cultivated within the leased area. This subsection does not authorise the use of a lease without an aquaculture permit.(4) The regulations may prescribe or provide for the form of an aquaculture lease granted or renewed under this Part and may provide in the form for the inclusion of such additional covenants and conditions as the Minister may determine.(5) The term of any lease granted under this section must not exceed 15 years.(6) The Minister may lease land under this section by auction, public tender or ballot even though an application has been made for a lease of the land.(7) If the land to which an application is made appears to the Minister to be available for lease and the Minister is satisfied that the application is consistent with any relevant aquaculture industry development plan under this Part, the Minister:(a) must cause to be published in the Gazette and in a newspaper circulating in the area in which the land is situated, a notice of receipt of the application, specifying in the notice that written objections to the granting of the lease may be lodged with the Director-General before the expiration of a period specified in the notice, and(b) must not make a decision in respect of the application to which the notice relates until the time limited for lodging objections to the granting of the lease has expired and the Minister has considered any objections that have been lodged.
The Minister is not required to comply with this subsection if the person to whom the lease is to be granted has obtained a development consent under Part 4 of the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979 to carry out development on the proposed leased area for the purposes of the aquaculture concerned.(8) The regulations may make provision for or with respect to applications for aquaculture leases or to auctions, public tenders and ballots for aquaculture leases.