Conditions of forfeiting of titles

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BY CAROL-ANNE SULEGA

WITH the amendment in the Lands and Titles legislation, the Commissioner of Lands may exercise his or his powers to forfeit a Fixed Term Estate or a PE award.

This action, according to the report on the legislation compiled by the Bills and Legislation Committee may happen if a land is not developed within three years of the award.

In such cases, the Commissioner of Lands may forfeit the land or use his or her powers for resumption.

“The affected party may appeal the cause for the act of forfeiting by the Commissioner of Lands, thus the objectives of this Bill to bring certainty to the loopholes of the current Act,” the report states.

However, in this case of a forfeited awarded title Fixed Term Estate or PE, no compensation will be paid to the affected party.

The BLC welcomed this aspect of the reform but also suggested that this provision should be extended so that an estate may also be forfeited in the event the owner of the estate is convicted of an offence relating to the possession, manufacture and sale of dangerous and illicit drugs.

The Lands and Titles (Amendment) Bill 2016 allows the Lands Board to resume for public purposes all or part of a fixed term estate automatically created under section 100 of the Act.

The Bills and Legislation Committee, in conducting the inquiry looked at the power of resumption of the Commissioner of Lands, compensation for resumptions

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