Prospecting licences attract the expedited procedure of the Native Title Act 1993 (S237)
The State Government has a policy whereby applicants for exploration licences and prospecting licences will have to sign and offer a Regional Standard Heritage Agreement (RSHA) or prove they have an existing Alternative Heritage Agreement in place. This must happen before the applications will be submitted to the Native Title Act 1993 (NTA) Expedited Procedure.
This policy does not apply to applications located within the Esperance Nyungar and South West Settlement ILUA areas and applications within the Kimberley region.
A Native Title party affected by the proposed grant have the right to object to the expedited procedure statement within four months of the notification day. If no objections to the statement are received, the application may be granted.
If one or more Native Title party objects against the inclusion of the expedited procedure statement, the NNTT must make a determination whether the act is in fact an act attracting the expedited procedure. If the determination is that the expedited procedure applies the government party may grant the tenement.
If the objection is upheld the application proceeds into the right to negotiate process.
Often parties reach agreement within the expedited inquiry process resulting in the objection being withdrawn and the grant proceeding.
Statutory Declaration to this effect must be lodged with the department.