Crown Lands Act 1989 No 6
Historical version for 6 July 2009 to 27 April 2010 (accessed 26 November 2014 at 16:13) Current version
Part 7Division 5

Division 5 Protection of public land

153   Definitions

In a provision of this Division:

authorised person means:

(a)  a member of the Police Force,
(b)  a person holding an office, position or rank prescribed for the purposes of this definition, or
(c)  a person authorised by the Minister for the purposes of the provision.

erection, in relation to a structure, includes any work carried out in creating the structure.

interfere, in relation to a substance on public land, includes removing, cutting, digging up, disturbing, displacing, stacking and heaping the substance.

public land means Crown land or land within a reserve as defined in Part 5 or any other land granted, dedicated or reserved for a public purpose.

structure includes:

(a)  any building,
(b)  any post, pile, stake, pipe, chain, wire or any other thing that is fixed to the soil or to anything fixed to the soil,
(c)  any roadwork, pathway or paving,
(d)  any works for the reclamation of land that are or are liable to be, or would, but for the reclamation, be or be liable to be, covered wholly or partly by water, and
(e)  any excavation works, drain, canal, sump or foundation, whether lined or unlined.

substance, in relation to public land, includes plants, trees, timber, turf, stone, clay, shells, earth, sand and gravel.

vacant public land means public land which is not held under lease or licence from the Crown or from the trustees of the land.

154   Operation of Division

(1)  Nothing in this Division affects any other law applying to public land, but a person is not liable to be punished twice for an act or omission that constitutes an offence under both this Division and any other law.
(2)  Regulations or by-laws applying to public land may contain provisions having the effect of authorising any act or omission that would, but for the by-laws and this subsection, constitute an offence arising under this Division.
(3)  Nothing in this section authorises the making of regulations or by-laws that could not be made if this section were not in force.

155   Offences on public land

(1)  A person shall not, without lawful authority:
(a)  reside on public land,
(b)  erect a structure on public land,
(c)  graze stock on public land,
(d)  drive stock on public land,
(e)  clear, dig up or cultivate public land,
(f)  enclose public land (other than a road or watercourse to which section 63 applies),
(g)  fail to pay any rent due and payable in respect of the enclosure of public land that is a road or watercourse,
(h)  interfere with any substance, whether on or in, or forming part of, public land, or
(i)  deposit or leave on public land:
(i)  any rubbish, litter, refuse, dead animal, filth or other similar matter, or
(ii)  any matter of a prescribed class or description, whether or not of a kind referred to in subparagraph (i),
except in a place or receptacle provided for the purpose.

Maximum penalty: 20 penalty units.

(2)  A person shall not cause to be done anything that is prohibited by subsection (1) (b)–(f), (h) or (i).

Maximum penalty: 20 penalty units.

(3)  In proceedings for an offence under this section, the defendant has the onus of proving lawful authority in relation to the act or omission giving rise to the alleged offence.
(4)  It is a sufficient defence to a prosecution for an offence arising under subsection (1) (e) or (h) if the defendant establishes that the activity with which he or she is charged was carried out in the course of fossicking, as referred to in section 12 (1) of the Mining Act 1992.

156   Unauthorised use of structures or land

(1)  The Minister:
(a)  may cause a notice to be served on a person prohibiting the person, without lawful authority, from making use of any structure erected on public land or from carrying on any prescribed activity on public land, or
(b)  may cause a notice to be displayed in a conspicuous place on or near public land prohibiting persons generally, without lawful authority, from making use of any structure or carrying on any prescribed activity on the land.
(2)  A person on whom a notice is served shall not, without lawful authority, make use of the structure or carry on the activity to which the notice relates after the expiration of a period specified in the notice.

Maximum penalty: 20 penalty units.

(3)  A person shall not, without lawful authority, make use of a structure or carry on a prescribed activity on public land if that use or activity is prohibited by a notice displayed in a conspicuous place on or near the land.

Maximum penalty: 20 penalty units.

(4)  In proceedings for an offence under this section, the defendant has the onus of proving lawful authority in relation to the act or omission giving rise to the alleged offence.

157   Compensation

(1)  In addition to any penalty imposed for an offence arising under section 155 or 156, a person convicted of the offence is liable to pay such amount by way of compensation (including an amount in substitution for rent that might otherwise have been payable) as the court before which the person is convicted may order.
(2)  Any amount ordered to be paid shall be paid by the offender to the clerk of the court for payment to the Director-General.
(3)  An order under this section is taken to be a fine for the purposes of the Fines Act 1996.
(4)  An order made by a court under section 10 of the Crimes (Sentencing Procedure) Act 1999 in any proceedings for an offence referred to in subsection (1) operates for the purposes of that subsection as a conviction for the offence.

158   Removal of unauthorised structures

(1)  For the purposes of this section, a structure is on public land without lawful authority if it is:
(a)  a structure the erection of which was not, at the time of its erection, authorised by or under the provisions of this or any other Act (other than Part 11 or 12A of the Local Government Act 1919, Part 1 of Chapter 7 of the Local Government Act 1993 or the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979), not being a structure referred to in paragraph (b), or
(b)  a structure:
(i)  the erection or use of which was authorised by or under the provisions of this or any other Act (other than Part 11 or 12A of the Local Government Act 1919, Part 1 of Chapter 7 of the Local Government Act 1993 or the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979),
(ii)  that is or was required, by or under those provisions, to be removed at or within a specified time, and
(iii)  that has not been so removed.
(2)  The Minister may cause any structure that is on public land without lawful authority to be removed, together with the contents of the structure.
(3)  The Minister may cause to be displayed or published a notice requiring any person:
(a)  who claims to have authority to erect, maintain or use a structure erected on any public land, or any part of the structure, or
(b)  who claims any interest in the structure,
to deliver to the Minister a statement in writing signed by the person stating by what authority the person erected or is entitled to maintain or use the structure or part or by what authority the person claims any interest in the structure.
(4)  The notice shall be:
(a)  displayed on or adjacent to the structure, or
(b)  published in a local newspaper or such other newspaper (if any) as the Minister may determine.
(5)  A person who, within 1 month after display or publication of the notice, fails to deliver the statement to the Minister has no claim against the Minister or any other person removing the structure or contents.
(6)  The Minister may cause anything removed under this section:
(a)  to be destroyed, sold or stored,
(b)  to be returned to a person considered by the Minister to be its owner, or
(c)  if it is stored under paragraph (a) and not returned under paragraph (b)—to be destroyed or sold.
(7)  The Minister may, on condition that it be removed, sell anything that the Minister may cause to be removed under this section.
(8)  The Minister may recover as a debt due to the Crown the expenses incurred in the removal, destruction, sale or storage of the structure, part or contents:
(a)  if the structure or part was erected without lawful authority—from the person who erected the structure or caused it to be erected,
(b)  whether the structure or part was erected with or without lawful authority—from the person who has made use of the structure:
(i)  if a notice was served on the person under section 156 (1) in respect of the structure—after the expiration of the period specified in the notice, or
(ii)  if a notice was displayed or published under this section in respect of the structure and it is proved that the person knew, or ought reasonably to have known, of the notice—after the expiration of a period of 1 month after which it was displayed or published,
(c)  if the structure is a structure referred to in subsection (1) (b)—from the person who was required, by or under the provisions referred to in subsection (1) (b), to remove the structure, or
(d)  if the expenses are recoverable under paragraphs (a), (b) and (c) from more than one of those persons—from both or all of them jointly and each of them severally.

159   Removal of trespassers from public land

(1)  An authorised person may issue to a person, and file in the Local Court, an application notice:
(a)  alleging that the person is in unlawful occupation of public land or is unlawfully using public land, and
(b)  requiring the person to appear before the Local Court at a specified date, time and place.
(2)  Unlawful occupation or use includes occupation or use purporting to be under a forfeited or expired holding.
(3)  On appearance of a person in answer to an application notice (or on proof of service of the notice on the person or at the person’s last known place of residence or business), the Local Court shall hear and inquire into the subject-matter of the notice.
(4)  On being satisfied as to truth of the matters alleged in an application notice, the Local Court shall issue a warrant addressed to any authorised person requiring and authorising the person to:
(a)  dispossess and remove the person in unlawful occupation of, or unlawfully using, the land,
(b)  remove any buildings or goods from the land, and
(c)  take possession of the land on behalf of the Crown.
(5)  The Local Court, for any reason it thinks fit, may order that the execution of a warrant be delayed for a specified time.
(6)  In proceedings under this section the Local Court may make such orders as to the payment of costs as to the Court seem just and reasonable.

160   Vehicles on vacant public land

(1)  In this section:

vehicle includes:

(a)  a motor car, motor carriage, motor cycle or other apparatus propelled on land, snow or ice wholly or partly by volatile spirit, steam, gas, oil or electricity,
(b)  a boat or other object that, while floating on water or submerged, whether wholly or partly, under water, is wholly or partly used for the conveyance of persons or things,
(c)  an apparatus that, while propelled in the air by human or mechanical power or by the wind, is wholly or partly used for the conveyance of persons or things,
(d)  an apparatus propelled on land, snow or ice by human or animal power or by the wind, and
(e)  a trailer or caravan, whether or not it is in the course of being towed.

(2)  A reference in this section to the Minister includes, if the reference is in relation to land in respect of which a reserve trust has been appointed, a reference to the reserve trust.
(3)  The Minister may give such directions as to the bringing of vehicles into, and the use and parking or mooring of vehicles in, any vacant public land as the Minister thinks fit, and any such direction:
(a)  may be limited as to time, place or subject-matter, and
(b)  may be varied or revoked by the Minister.
(4)  A direction given under subsection (3) has effect only while there is erected or displayed on or near, or marked on, the land to which the direction relates a sign that is notice of the direction.
(5)  The direction appearing on a sign that is:
(a)  erected or displayed on or near, or
(b)  marked on,
any vacant public land with the authority of the Minister has effect as a direction, for the time being in force, given under subsection (3) in relation to the land, and the sign is, for the purposes of subsection (4), notice of that direction.
(6)  A person shall not contravene a direction having effect under this section.

Maximum penalty: 5 penalty units.

(7)  A person shall not interfere with, alter or remove any sign erected or displayed with the authority of the Minister on or near, or marked with that authority on, vacant public land.

Maximum penalty: 5 penalty units.

(8)  Nothing in this section affects any other provision of this or any other Act, or of any by-law, so far as the provision has effect in relation to vehicles on vacant public land.
(9)  An allegation, in an information in respect of an offence under this section:
(a)  that a sign was erected, displayed or marked with the authority of the Minister or the Minister’s delegate, or
(b)  that a sign was interfered with, altered or removed without the authority of the Minister or the Minister’s delegate,
is evidence of the truth of the allegation.

161   Liability of vehicle owner for certain offences

(1)  If an offence against section 160 (6) occurs in relation to a vehicle, the person who at the time of the offence is the owner of the vehicle is, by virtue of this section, guilty of an offence against the subsection as if the person were the actual offender unless:
(a)  the offence is dealt with under section 162 and the person satisfies an authorised person described in the notice served under that section that the vehicle was at the relevant time a stolen vehicle or a vehicle illegally taken or used, or
(b)  the court is satisfied that the vehicle was at the relevant time a stolen vehicle or a vehicle illegally taken or used.
(2)  Nothing in this section affects the liability of the actual offender but if a penalty has been imposed on or recovered from any person in relation to the offence no further penalty may be imposed on or recovered from any other person for the offence.
(3)  An owner of a vehicle is not, under subsection (1), guilty of an offence if:
(a)  the offence is dealt with under section 162 and the owner:
(i)  within 21 days after service on the owner of a notice under that section alleging that the owner has been guilty of the offence, supplies by statutory declaration to an authorised person described in the notice the name and address of the person who was in charge of the vehicle at all relevant times relating to the offence, or
(ii)  satisfies that authorised person that the owner did not know and could not with reasonable diligence have found out that name and address, or
(b)  the owner:
(i)  within 21 days after service on the owner of a summons in respect of the offence, supplies by statutory declaration to the informant the name and address of the person who was in charge of the vehicle at all relevant times relating to the offence, or
(ii)  satisfies the court that the owner did not know and could not with reasonable diligence have found out that name and address.
(4)  If a statutory declaration under subsection (3) is produced in any proceedings against the person named in the declaration that relate to the offence in respect of which it was supplied it is evidence that that person was in charge of the vehicle at all relevant times relating to the offence.
(5)  A statutory declaration which relates to more than one offence is not a statutory declaration for the purposes of subsection (3).
(6)  In this section:

owner of a vehicle includes the responsible person for the vehicle within the meaning of the Road Transport (General) Act 2005.

registered means registered under the Road Transport (Vehicle Registration) Act 1997.

trader’s plate means a trader’s plate within the meaning of the Road Transport (Vehicle Registration) Act 1997.

162   Penalty notices for certain offences

(1)  An authorised person may serve a penalty notice on anyone who appears to the authorised person to have committed an offence under this Act, the regulations or the by-laws made under section 128, being an offence prescribed by the regulations for the purposes of this section.
(2)  A penalty notice is a notice to the effect that, if the person served does not wish to have the matter determined by a court, the person may pay, within the time and to the person specified in the notice, the amount of penalty prescribed by the regulations for the offence if dealt with under this section.
(3)  A penalty notice:
(a)  may be served personally or by post, or
(b)  if it relates to an offence of which the owner of a vehicle is guilty under section 161, may be served by leaving it on, or attaching it to, the vehicle addressed to “the owner” (without stating the name or address of the owner).
(4)  If the amount of penalty prescribed for an alleged offence is paid under this section, no person is liable to any further proceedings for the alleged offence.
(5)  Payment under this section shall not be regarded as an admission of liability for the purpose of, nor in any way affect or prejudice, any civil claim, action or proceeding arising out of the same occurrence.
(6)  The regulations may:
(a)  prescribe an offence for the purposes of this section by specifying the offence or by referring to the provision creating the offence,
(b)  prescribe the amount of penalty payable for the offence if dealt with under this section, and
(c)  prescribe different amounts of penalties for different offences or classes of offences.
(7)  The amount of a penalty prescribed under this section for an offence shall not exceed the maximum amount of penalty which could be imposed for the offence by a court.
(8)  This section does not limit the operation of any other provision of, or made under, this or any other Act relating to proceedings which may be taken in respect of offences.

163–165   (Repealed)

166   Impounding of animals

(1)  For the purposes of the Impounding Act 1993, the Minister is the occupier of vacant public land.
(2)  An authorised person may exercise any power conferred on the Minister by the operation of this section.
(3)  An authorised person may, on behalf of the Minister, take proceedings for the trespass committed on the vacant public land by animals impounded by virtue of this section.
(4)  For the purposes of subsection (3), the Minister shall be taken to be in exclusive possession of vacant public land.
(5)  This section:
(a)  does not prevent an information being laid for an offence against section 155, or
(b)  affect any proceedings for such an offence.

167   Requirement to state name and address

(1)  In this section:

motor vehicle means a motor car, motor carriage, motor cycle or other apparatus propelled wholly or partly by volatile spirit, steam, gas, oil or electricity.

(2)  An authorised person may require a person whom the authorised person suspects on reasonable grounds to be offending against this Act, the regulations or the by-laws to state his or her full name and place of residence.
(3)  An authorised person may require the driver of a motor vehicle on vacant public land to produce his or her driver licence and to state his or her full name and place of residence.
(4)  A person shall not:
(a)  fail or refuse to comply with a requirement under this section, or
(b)  in purported compliance with such a requirement, state a name that is not the person’s name or a place of abode that is not the person’s place of abode.

Maximum penalty—subsection (4): 5 penalty units.

168   Obstruction of authorised persons

(1)  A person shall not obstruct entry to public land by an authorised person who produces evidence of authority to enter the land.

Maximum penalty: 10 penalty units.

(2)  It is a defence to a prosecution under this section if it is proved that:
(a)  the authorised person did not have reasonable cause to enter the land, and
(b)  the defendant had a right to obstruct entry to the land.
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