Norfolk Island Legislation

Isle of Norfolk Legislation

MUSE Project - Norfolk Island Since the Norfolk Island Legislation Amendment Act 2015 was passed in the Australian Parliament, Norfolk Island has survived the most turbulent years since its colonisation by the bounty offspring of Pitcairn Island in 1856. This law eliminated the restricted system of Norfolk Islanders' self-government since 1979, as established in the Norfolk Island Act 1979, eliminated any recognition of the Pitcairner's specific status with respect to their home country on Norfolk Island and stated that the intergovernmental agreements would from then on be modelled on the "regional council" of New South Wales (Australia).

The steps were taken against the explicit wish of the vast majority of Norfolk Islanders and islanders in a popular vote and were described by Geoffrey Robertson QCC, an international recognised defender of fundamental freedoms, as "a sluggish regression" (Robertson 2016). This legislation led to the creation of the grass-roots organisation Norfolk Island People for Democracy (nipd); a nipd-issue to the United Nations together with the Norfolk Island Council of Elders (coe) to classify the island as non-self-governing land under the auspices of the United Nations; and the occupancy of the "Tent Embassy" on the Old Military Barracks premises in Kingston, Norfolk's historical district and administration centre[late page 184].

There have been wide reports of grievances against the behaviour of the Norfolk Island caretaker (appointed by the GOA). There is also a range of recent publications in the regional press, the Norfolk Islander and Norfolk Online News available in books (Nobbs 2017). In the year under report, there was still a high degree of policy-making both on and off the island, on the one side launched by the French and Dutch governments and on the other by the GOA.

On 1 July 2016, the GOA's plan was put into effect on Norfolk Island. Prior to this, on 28 May 2016 a new regional council of Norfolkinsel (nirc) was elected. Unlike earlier island practices, this choice deprived inhabitants who were not Australians (especially New Zealanders and Britons) of their rights.

During the constituent session of the Norfolk Island Legislative Assembly on 6 July 2016, Ms Robin Adam - a former member and ministers of the dissolved Norfolk Island Legislative Assembly - was appointed mayoress. At a time of continued shift to new regulations, the New South Wales Local Government Act 1993 regulates the operations of the New South Wales Local Government Act, in supplement to various Commonwealth Acts and Norfolk Island Acts still in force on Norfolk Island.

The Norfolk people have no democracy in New South Wales. Norfolk Island's caretaker will remain the island's supervisor in the matter of the Covenant. Fiona Nash, Senator of Australia, was named Secretary of State for Municipal Administration and Territory in July 2016 and assumed responsibility for Norfolk Island operations. The following months Norfolk Island was visited by an inter-party group of British House of Commons MEPs.

In the aftermath of their stay, Members of Parliament issued a written declaration in the House of Commons minutes and reported that "the administrator of Norfolk Island.... has been deprived of the trust of the overwhelming population of Norfolk Island. It' harms the life of the Norfolk Island population and Australia' s fame (Kawczynski, Sherriff and Rosindell 2017).

Nash made her first trip to the island on 16 and 17 September 2016. Key topics under discussion with the new board include the supply of electrical energy as well as the roll of photovoltaic energy, disposal of wastes, access to the Hawaiki submarine's telecom cabling system, a renunciation of the reimbursement of the 2006 common-wealth airstrip seal back -up and possible....

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