Country Idealist Profiles

Northern Territory – Regions

Posted in Australia, Northern Territory (Australia), Northern Territory (Australia) Basics by mjoymatheson on August 14, 2008

There are four classes of local government areas in the Northern Territory:

  • Municipalities (6) – The six large centers of the territory are incorporated into municipalities, dealing with similar areas to other Australian councils, except building control and planning.
  • Community government councils (30) – Community Government councils are constituted differently from municipalities, and often take on extra functions. Some councils, due to nature of their area’s land ownership, do not charge rates on property.
  • Incorporated associations (26) – Incorporated associations provide some local government functions.
  • Special purpose towns (1) – The ‘special purpose town’ of Jabiru receives its power from the entity that constructed the town, rather than the territory’s local government legislation.

Also important to consider when looking at the regions of the Northern Territory are the land councils, established by the Aboriginal Land Rights (Northern Territory) Act of 1976.  This act established the basis upon with Aboriginal people in the Northern Territory could, for the first time, claim rights to land based on traditional occupation.  In effect it allowed title to be transferred for most of the Aboriginal reserve lands and the opportunity to claim other land not owned, leased or being used by someone else.  The Land Councils are representative bodies with statutory authority under the Act.  There are four Land Councils in the Northern Territory, they are:

  • The Anindilyakawa Land Council, covering Groote Eylandt in the Gulf of Carpentaria.
  • The Central Land Council, covering 771,747 square kilometres in the southern half of the Northern Territory.
  • The Northern Land Council, covering the Top End.
  • The Tiwi Land Council, covering Bathurst and Melville Islands, north of Darwin



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