Heritage Act 2018

The Heritage Act 2018 and what the Act and associated Regulations mean for heritage in WA.

Heritage Act 2018 and Regulations

1 July 2019, the Heritage of Western Australia Act 1990 was replaced by the Heritage Act 2018.

Key changes in the new Heritage Act 2018 include a streamlined process for entering a place in the State Register; more certainty for owners wishing to develop their heritage places; better protections for important heritage places; and increased transparency by publishing the Heritage Council's advice to the Minister for Heritage on the inclusion of a place in the State Register.

The Act refers to ‘regulations’ or ‘prescribed matters’ in several areas, with these defined under accompanying Regulations, that are issued by the Governor to ensure that the Act can function properly. The Heritage Regulations 2019 were adopted for the commencement of the Heritage Act 2018 and were considered the minimum regulations necessary for the Act to operate effectively.  


Review of Heritage Regulations

•    Heritage Amendment Regulations 2021
•    Explanatory paper
•    Consultation Hub survey

Further regulations have been drafted, to support those provisions of the Act that are activated or enhanced through regulations.  These are detailed in the draft Heritage Amendment Regulations 2021.  This draft, which also contains minor revisions to some of the original regulations, has been the subject of community consultation through the Department’s Consultation Hub.

Proposed changes and additions include regulations for:

  • the appointment by the Minister of a deputy chairperson
  • additional information required for nominations, including re-nominations
  • extending the exemptions from the requirement to refer proposals to the Heritage Council to include:
  • structures and other built forms (in addition to buildings) for maintenance, repairs and the like
  • the management of operational cemeteries
  • clarification in relation to proposals affecting places that become a registered place
  • clarification as to when a decision-maker or applicant can request the Council to reconsider its advice on a referred proposal
  • publication requirements for guidelines for local heritage surveys
  • the State Government heritage property disposal process including guidelines about State Government heritage
  • process and criteria as to when compensation can be applied for where a work prohibition (e.g. stop work order) has been issued
  • administrative processes relating to notification of specified actions taken under the Act.

Full details on proposed changes can be found in the consultation draft of the Heritage Amendment Regulations 2021, and are further explained in an accompanying explanatory paper.  Submissions through the Consultation Hub are now closed and are being collated.  Agencies or individuals seeking to make a late submission may do so until 30 June 2021 by emailing HeritageAct2018@dplh.wa.gov.au.

Page last reviewed 21 June 2021
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