Almost half of all heritage nominations have waited 20 years or more to be assessed, according to a government response to questions on notice by Shadow Heritage Minster Nicole Lawder.
Of 88 heritage nominations waiting to be assessed, 42 were lodged in or before 1999, and a further 20 were lodged between 2000 and 2010.
“If these nominations didn’t qualify for heritage listing 20 years ago, they probably will by the time it takes this old and tired government to look at their applications,” Ms Lawder said.
“To put it in perspective, Labor has been in government nearly two decades – the same amount of time it has taken the Labor Government to process some of these applications.
“Clearly, the build-up of nominations comes down to a resourcing issue. Over the past two decades, the Government has failed to adequately support staff who have been working hard to support the Heritage Council during the heritage nomination process.
“The new funding provided to the ACT Heritage Council has been dedicated to process development applications only. The new funding will not be spent on the nominations of a place or object to the ACT Heritage Register, meaning the backlog of heritage nominations waiting to be assessed will continue to grow.
“Heritage Minister Mick Gentleman continues to say one thing and do another. He says his Government is committed to preserving heritage places and objects, and yet he consistently rejects calls from the Canberra Liberals to improve heritage listing processes.
“The Government’s history on heritage is shameful,” Ms Lawder said.
There are 88 heritage applications on the waiting list:
* 12 nominations made from 2016 to date
* 14 nominations made between 2011 and 2015
* 20 nominations made between 2000 and 2010
* 42 nominations made in or before 1999