Grounds of cancellation or operational suspension

The contact details for the Lightning Ridge Office has changed, the new contact details are displayed at the bottom of the page.

The Mining Act 1992 provides that a mineral claim may be cancelled for any of the following grounds

  1. if the holder contravenes any condition of the claim
  2. if the holder contravenes any provision of the Mining Act 1992 or the regulations
  3. if the holder fails to pay the necessary compensation
  4. if the holder is convicted of an offence relating to mining or minerals
  5. at the written request of the holder
  6. if the land is determined to be agricultural land
  7. if the land is required for a public purpose
  8. if ordered to do so by the Land and Environment Court

The department must serve a written notice on the holder of the claim if he proposes to cancel a claim on any of the first four grounds listed above. The notice must state the grounds of the proposed cancellation and give the holder a reasonable opportunity to make representations as to why the claim should not be cancelled.

It should be noted that if the holder of the claim has another party working the claim for them it is their responsibility to inform the party working the claim of any notice of contravention that could lead to a cancellation of the claim and to ensure that the situation is rectified.

If a claim is cancelled the holder may, within 14 days after written notice of the decision is served, apply to the Land and Environment Court for a review of the decision.

TitleDetails
Application for suspension of conditions of a mineral claimPDF 652 Kb
Application for cancellation of a small-scale titlePDF 1.69 MB

Observance of claim conditions

It is the responsibility of a mineral claim holder to be aware of and comply with the conditions of his or her claim. A breach of conditions can lead to

  1. the holder being directed to fix the problem
  2. a fine being imposed; or
  3. the claim being cancelled

Complaints or reports that conditions are not being observed may come from the public or departmental officers

Complaints by the public

Complaints from members of the public that the conditions of a mineral claim are not being observed are dealt with in the following manner:

  1. the claim is inspected and any breach verified by an officer of the department.
  2. if the inspection supports the complaint, the holder is informed in writing by a Director General that it is proposed to cancel the claim. The holder is given a period of 21 days in which to make representations as to why the claim should not be cancelled.
  3. any representations made by the holder are given due consideration by the Director General before making a decision as to whether or not to cancel the claim.
  4. following review of any representations made by the holder, the holder is notified in writing of the Director General's decision.

If the decision is to cancel the claim, the holder is informed of the right to apply to the  Land and Environment Court for a review of the Director General's decision.

Reports by the department

The department's Lightning Ridge Office has staff, including 4 field officers, who administers mineral claims.

The department therefore does not have sufficient resources to conduct systematic regular inspections of claims. However, where an officer observes breaches of the conditions of a mineral claim, the matter is dealt with in the following manner:

  1. the holder is informed of the breach and advised to fix the problem within a reasonable period. If the problem is not fixed then cancellation action may be commenced.
  2. if cancellation is commenced, the holder is informed in writing by the department that it is proposed to cancel the claim and given a period of 21 days in which to make representations as to why the claim should not be cancelled.
  3. upon receipt of any representations from the holder, a follow up inspection will be carried out by a departmental officer and a report made to the department
  4. following review of any representations made by the holder, the holder is notified in writing of the department's decision.

If the decision is to cancel the claim, the holder is informed of the right to apply to the  Land and Environment Court for a review of the decision.

Some breaches of claim conditions are fixable and need not lead to the cancellation of a claim. However, for others such as safety issues, the working requirement, 'ratting', breaching the building guidelines or repeated breaches relating to dogs, cancellation may be inevitable.

Review of cancellation by the Land and Environmental Court

If you apply for a review of the decision to cancel your claim, the matter will be heard by a Commissioner of the Land and Environment Court.  For information see the Land and Environment Court's website, Class 8: Mining matters.

Cancellation at the request of the holder

The holder of a mineral claim may request cancellation of a mineral claim after complying with the rehabilitation requirements under the conditions of a mineral claim.

TitleDetails
Rehabilitation standards for cancelled claims 220 Kb
Application for cancellation of a mineral claim 508 Kb
For further information
Lightning Ridge Office
Phone:
+61 (0)2 6820 5200
Fax:
+61 (0)2 6829 0825
lightningridge.office@planning.nsw.gov.au
Postal:
NSW Department of Planning and Environment, Division of Resources and Geoscience, PO Box 314 Lightning Ridge NSW 2834
Office:
Lot 60 Morilla Street Lightning Ridge NSW 2834 Map