Funding

Why PBCs need support

PBCs are a key element in the native title system:

What do PBCs need funding for?

While each PBC will have different funding needs, they share a common need for administrative support and funding, particularly in remote areas. These may include:

The Attorney General’s Steering Committee Report also notes other potential ongoing costs for:

The Native Title Program (administered through the Department for Families, Housing, Communities Services and Indigenous Affairs (FaHCSIA)) adds to these lists:

In addition to these statutory obligations, PBCs may seek funding for other reasons. Each PBC has a unique constitution and aims. Because of this, individual RNTBCs may have aspirations including land management, service provision, cultural heritage preservation, and more. PBC constitutions can be searched and viewed at the Office of the Registrar of Indigenous Corporations website. PBCs which hold exclusive title may have land management responsibilities that entail costs for materials and wages. Other PBCs have stated aims that extend into cultural, educational, social and ceremonial realms.

Extracted from Leah Ginnivan, ‘Funding for Prescribed Bodies Corporate’ Native Title Newsletter, September October, No. 5, 2010.

Funding sources

In June 2015 the Minister for Indigenous Affairs announced as part of the Northern Australia White Paper process an additional $20.4 million in funding over an initial four years to be targeted at capacity building for Prescribed Bodies Corporate (PBCs). The funding will assist these native title holding corporations to generate economic benefits through the effective and sustainable management of their land. Although the new funding was announced as part of the developing Northern Australia process, it will be available to PBCs throughout Australia.

The Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet is now inviting eligible applicants to apply for PBC capacity building grant funding under the Indigenous Advancement Strategy (IAS) . Applications will be accepted from individual PBCs, groups of PBCs, or third parties authorised to administer funds on behalf of PBCs. Applicants must meet other eligibility criteria outlined in the IAS Grant Guidelines and undergo financial viability checks and a risk assessment. There is no closing date for applications and the Department will consider applications throughout the year.

For more information on the IAS and to apply for funding visit the Department's website.

The first round of Aboriginals Benefit Account (ABA) grant funding has now closed. A subsequent ABA beneficial grant funding round is scheduled to open in February 2017 .

ABA grants funding is provided for one-off funding proposals that benefit Aboriginal people living in the Northern Territory. Proposals should fall under one of the four funding categories:

Applicants with proposals relating to land acquisition or management, or agriculture or pastoral investment must first seek the Indigenous Land Corporation's (ILC) views of the proposal beforehand, including whether the ILC considers the proposal viable and value for money. The ILC's views must be included in the application.

Likewise, applicants with proposals relating to business investment must first seek Indigenous Business Australia's (IBA) views of the proposal beforehand, including whether IBA considers the proposal viable and value for money. IBA's views must be included in the application.

For more information on the ABA grants funding and to apply, visit the Department's website.

PBC Funding and Training Guides

To provide some support to PBCs in this context, the Australian Institute of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies (AIATSIS), and the National Native Title Tribunal (NNTT) have created funding and training guides for PBCs. AIATSIS has both national, state and territory guides, but much of the funding outlined will be relevant to only a handful of PBCs. NNTT’s toolkit is focussed mainly on federal government programs which may assist PBCs. To access PBC training and funding guides click here.

Managed by the Australian Institute of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies (AIATSIS)
AIATSIS acknowledges the funding support of the Native Title Branch of
the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet (PM&C).