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27 November 2001

Progress continues to be made on implementation of Stage 2 of the Camps Resolution package.

Mr Peter Downes confirmed this after a further meeting of the Inter-Departmental Working Party in Lightning Ridge on Thursday November 15 2001.

The Working Party re-endorsed that the major issue was that of providing a secure and bankable title for each Camp.

Other issues that are discussed from time to time are not as important as that major issue, Mr Downes said.

And there are acceptable alternatives to reticulated electricity and piped water, the Working Party had agreed.

That Camps are on active opal fields is a fact that must always be kept in mind.

The Department of Land and Water Conservation was preparing an information package which would assist all Campholders when they will be required to apply for the Western Lands Lease for residence to replace their residential status Mineral Claims.

Mr Downes said it was envisaged that there would be a "cut off" date after which no more residential status Mineral Claims could be applied for.

After that "cut off" date, the people wishing to obtain a new title would need to go to the Department of Land and Water Conservation Far Western Region to apply for a Western Lands Lease for residence.

Plenty of prior notice would be given before the "cut off" date becomes operational, Mr Downes said.

Over the next couple of months, removal of derelict Camps would be arranged. Some good Camps which had been abandoned and which were not on a Stage 1 residential status Mineral Claim would also probably be put up for auction," Mr Downes said.

Mr Downes confirmed that as Camps were on active opal mining fields, no mains power eletricity would be supported by the Working Party.

Mr Downes also reminded all holders of residential status Mineral Claims that they should continue to maintain and renew their Mineral claim so that they can move into the Stage 2 part of the package and be granted a Western Lands Lease for residence.

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