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#26

elrodeo
Member
Joined: 15 February 2013
Posts: 248
Member
20 March 2014 08:33 am

Lee mate flick Waz (Ando aka Admin) a pm as he is pretty much on the pulse of things.
He may be a bit slow on reply due to his study commitments but he should be able to help or put you in the right people to get in touch with.

It's a real hard situation as yes you want to stand up for your rights (and I'm right behind this) and lobby for a bit of sanity and make the rules clear cut and have sluices , highbankers fully approved.
Let's just hope things stay grey or at the very least, improve for all fossickers/prospectors.
Mate there is absolutely nothing wrong in standing up for what you believe in and after spending a long ,long time living o/seas i was shocked to come back to Oz and see how complacent most Aussies had become. Government brings in new legislation , everybody has a whinge for a bit and then all forgotten. It used to be people "Up in Arms " and marching on the streets for our democratic rights at the very least.

#27

gcause
TrackIT Software Pty Ltd
From: North Brisbane, QLD
Joined: 07 October 2013
Posts: 1,073
TrackIT Software Pty Ltd
04 May 2014 09:46 am

Goal posts have been shifted again!

It looks like the Fossicking Act in Qld has been amended on 28th March, 2014. Not sure what the changes are yet.

Here's the amended Act:

https://www.legislation.qld.gov.au/LEGI … ingA94.pdf

Here's the regulations that support the Act (they are dated 1st July 2013 so don't appear to have changed)

https://www.legislation.qld.gov.au/LEGI … ingR09.pdf


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#28

gcause
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From: North Brisbane, QLD
Joined: 07 October 2013
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TrackIT Software Pty Ltd
04 May 2014 11:21 am

Just read the amended Fossicking Act the changes are significant and include provision for the payment of royalties to the state you need to read Chapter 11 of the mining act in conjunction with the fossicking act:

https://www.legislation.qld.gov.au/LEGI … lReA89.pdf


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#29

blayke
Member
Joined: 12 February 2014
Posts: 216
Member
04 May 2014 02:00 pm

prospecting tourism is going down big time....i just got back from Sapphire CQ doing some sapphire fossicking and usually this time of year the parks and free camping start to get loaded....there was 3 campers....sapphire businesses are slowly starting to falter its pathetic because of these stupid restrictions and especially now that sapphires are getting harder to find and dig for....15 years ago it was packed because it was easy now people arent bothering because its too difficult and restrictions are everywhere...its the same with gold.. pathetic something needs to be done and im more than happy to help support it!

#30

snafu
Member
Joined: 30 August 2013
Posts: 16
Member
06 May 2014 10:11 am

What it comes down to is simply this – if it is written in current legislation then it is law.

There have been a couple of comments made here that loosely interpreted are saying “bugger the law, I’ll do what I please” and it is precisely this type of attitude along with illegal activity that make it hard for the majority.

Being a full-time sapphire miner I have had quite a lot of dealings with the Qld Mines Dept in its’ various formats and I would be the first to say that compared with other states we are very much over regulated. There have been numerous changes to legislation over the years that I haven’t agreed with, but regardless of whether I agree or not, I still have to comply with the law – it has been non-compliance issues by too many that have resulted in a tightening of the regulations.

If the Department of Natural Resources & Mines decided to do a sweep through the Central Qld gemfields with a “big stick” approach to enforcing the legislation then most claim holders would lose their claims for non-compliance issues and quite a lot of fossickers would also be in breach of the regulations. As it is, the Mines inspectors are reasonably lenient in their approach to both claim holders & fossickers and with the latter, the main issues are not having the relevant permits.

The free camping area here in Sapphire has been reduced in size and enforcement of the council bylaw of only 48 hour camping in any 2 week period is being regularly policed. The reason for this is due to the attitude of those who believe they have the right to do what they please and stay as long they like.

We are a fairly layback community here as most fossicking and small time mining areas are in not just Qld, but also in other states – we keep it that way by not rattling the cage of government law makers too much.

For those who believe that they have a legitimate cause or reason for doing any activity outside of the framework of the law then please put your argument to the relevant authority rather than stuffing it up for the rest of us by taking the “I’ll do as I please” approach.

Jeff


"never trust a man who doesn't drink or a town without a pub"

3 users like this post: TenOunce Tone, Brother, Piep

#31

Lefty
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Joined: 01 May 2014
Posts: 916
Member
07 May 2014 07:02 am

It is a shame when areas are closed down or the authorities come down heavy because of too many people doing the wrong thing - ie overstaying at free sites by long periods of time, leaving gates open, leaving mountains of rubbish lying around, having a bath in stock water troughs with soap etc. That said,  I might have it wrong but in this particular case it seems to me that the legislation is wrongly classifying a piece of hand equipment as though it were something else. If it's what I'm thinking of then it cannot possibly be anything other than a hand tool - it has no motor and no moving parts of any kind. Looks like it's a pretty run-of-the-mill piece of hand-powered prospecting equipment in other states and many goldbugs here are probably quite rightly angry to discover it's use is illegal, seemingly for no reason. And of course, the problem with taking your complaints to the relevent authorities is that the chances of you being listened to are less than zero - they have spent large sums of money paying law firms to draft up these regulations, they are not going to reveiw them for a number of average Joe complaintants too small to be of any political consequence.

I would agree that most claimholders of the CQ gemfield are probably breaching legislation to some degree - but if they policed it to the letter, there would soon be no-one and nothing left to police. The field and the communities on it would cease to exist. There seems to be quite a hefty slew of regulations attached to it and I don't intend to breach any of them regardless of how hard or impractical they might make what should be such a simple and straightforward activity, but it is worthwhile remembering that said regulations have generally been drafted by people who know sweet FA about digging for sapphires in the CQ bush and care even less. They live in a paper world, the impact that their rule making has for the people who actually carry out the activity is pretty immaterial to them.

#32

gcause
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From: North Brisbane, QLD
Joined: 07 October 2013
Posts: 1,073
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07 May 2014 07:17 pm

So did anyone notice the new requirement to pay Royalties to the State on your finds in the ammended Fossicking act?

Last edited by gcause (07 May 2014 07:18 pm)


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#33

TenOunce Tone
Member
From: Cairns, QLD
Joined: 18 March 2013
Posts: 1,382
Member
07 May 2014 08:57 pm

I did see something that if you had a significant amount of return from the gold /precious /gems.. I dont think they are interested in the one or two ounces here and there.

No one from the Palmer area has mentioned paying royalties to me..

Cheers, Tone


One man, One pan, One goal!

1 user likes this post: snafu

#34

malco
Member
Joined: 30 January 2014
Posts: 31
Member
07 May 2014 09:59 pm

So if I put one hand on the sluice and give it a little shake when I feed it, isn't it just a different shaped  pan. Year I know , don't be silly.  Regards mal.


Travellin aussie earthlings, full time in a Kedron c/van Gp3000, pans and sluice

#35

Lefty
Member
Joined: 01 May 2014
Posts: 916
Member
08 May 2014 06:23 am

gcause wrote:

So did anyone notice the new requirement to pay Royalties to the State on your finds in the ammended Fossicking act?

I think they were already there gcause - I seem to recall reading them in the small miners handbook before I applied. But I think you have to make a pretty significant-sized find before you have to pay royalties, as Tone says they aren't interested in an ounce or two of gold or a few stones.

#36

Lefty
Member
Joined: 01 May 2014
Posts: 916
Member
08 May 2014 06:27 am

Whoops, I see you were referring to the fossicking act. I suppose when you grant yourself the sort of pay rises we have seen recently, you might need to come up with some extra financing - but of course, they're worth every cent aren't they? roll

#37

snafu
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Joined: 30 August 2013
Posts: 16
Member
08 May 2014 09:14 am

The payment of royalties only applies to claim/lease holders and not to fossicking. The legislation is a bit ambiguous in the interpretation.

Division 3, Section 35 states:

Payment of royalties to State

(1) This Act does not affect a requirement under another Act to
lodge royalty returns for, and pay royalties on, fossicking
materials collected by a licensee.
(2) However, despite the Mineral Resources Act 1989, a licensee
need not file a royalty return under the Act for minerals
collected by the licensee in a royalty period if no royalty is
payable under the Act for the minerals for the period.
(3) In this section—
licensee means—
(a) the holder of an individual or family fossickers licence;
or
(b) an individual fossicking under another kind of
fossickers licence.

That section is pure government legalese mumbo jumbo because it doesn’t state one way or another if royalties are applicable to fossicking.
The following section (36) states:

Sale or use of fossicking material in trade or commerce

(1) This section applies to fossicking material collected under a
licence.
(2) A licensee must not—
(a) in trade or commerce, sell the material; or
(b) use the material in the production of something else for
sale in trade or commerce.
Maximum penalty—400 penalty units.
(3) However, this section does not apply to—
(a) an occasional sale or use of fossicking material; or
(b) a sale or use prescribed by regulation.

Royalties are only payable if you sell the mined mineral and the sale exceeds a prescribed amount in dollar value in a 12 month period. The prescribed amount varies from mineral to mineral. Royalties applicable to sapphires kick in at $100,000 and the scheduled fee is 2.5% of sale value. The royalty free threshold used to be $30,000 for sapphires and other precious gemstones and even at that amount I doubt that many small miners would have made sales above that amount in any given royalty period and doubt that they would have declared the sale if they had.

More info on royalties is available here: https://www.osr.qld.gov.au/royalties/rates.shtml

Jeff


"never trust a man who doesn't drink or a town without a pub"

1 user likes this post: gcause

#38

Brother
Member
Joined: 24 May 2013
Posts: 208
Member
10 May 2014 04:58 pm

I had all these problems when I started, was happy to pan as The Law said! But where? How far and how much. QLD a big place.

So I asked people around,? land owners, a few claim and lease owners, I was a few months after and all my permits paid! (1 more thing to keep us down!) before I got a chance of going to get a little bit of gold!!

Land owners where the best, easer to approach and ask. You may know many already!! And so I just started trying creeks on land that I had Permission to be on!  And whalla I have 2 good spots (1st vid)
And 1 great spot (last vid).

I have permission to be there, and for what Im doing! Make sure you have it too!! Especially if your doing a youtube vid, as it will be evidence against you! 

Now I still stick to the rules of fossicking!! fill my holes and even more!

To be totally honest! ITS A COMPLETE LOAD OF  yikes   

Don't break the law, take your time, talk to people, (Hi there, may I have permission to fossick in the creek down the back) you may be surprised,

You may also be surprised on how much Gold you pass by to get to the Gold fields?

Very best with this, good luck.


3 pans, 2 sluice, 3 HIbanker, 1 Garrett AT Gold and no more time for dreaming!

#39

Solomon 009
Member
From: Bundaberg, QLD
Joined: 22 April 2014
Posts: 42
Member
13 May 2014 11:57 pm

TenOunce Tone wrote:

If you need a hand Lee, let me know, more than willing to help out the cause. I understand that a sluice is ok, spoke to the mines dept in Mareeba and Townsville back in Nov 2013, they indicated that a sluice is ok. You cant use powered devices to dig or extract the gravel.

If you are on a lease you can use what you want to dig out the gravel as long as it is in the plan of operations and as long as it is not a dredge.

I will check with a few guys who may know better and see if things have changed in the past couple of months,

Given the new "expedited" approval process the Newman/Abbott govt have introduced, seems a lot of things are changing for the big boys, while once again hosing over the rest of the citizens.

Time for us NQ prospectors to make a stand I say!

This is the current fossicking information from DERM website.

http://www.dnrm.qld.gov.au/mining/fossi … -materials

Dont see anything saying you cant use a sluice. Its not mechanical

Link to the legislation and regs covering fossicking, I will have a good read of these tomorrow.

https://www.legislation.qld.gov.au/Acts … s_SL_F.htm

Only thing is if they consider a sluice a fixed structure??  It is not permanent, I dont think this would pass the test of a reasonable man??
Cheers, Tone

So I went to the site and this is what it said.......................Paul

Page not found

Sorry, the page you are looking for could not be found. We are regularly making improvements to our website, so it might not exist any longer or the web address you used may be wrong.
Try using our site search to find the topic you are looking for or return to our home page.
We also welcome your feedback on ways we can improve our site.

Last updated 16 January 2014

#40

Solomon 009
Member
From: Bundaberg, QLD
Joined: 22 April 2014
Posts: 42
Member
13 May 2014 11:57 pm

Our new areas are open!
3 areas in Durikai and one in Talgai.
I was told its open- but not to do a press release to the papers ect until the minister decides if he will do a release.

I will have detailed maps soon of the areas for Oziexplorer.

Thanks to everybody who helped get them open,It was a hard slog, but we did it.
I will be drafting a letter naming and thanking those who I dealt with in government, and sending it to the ministers involved.

Durikai Area
1400028716_durikai.jpg

Talgai Area
1400028738_talgai.jpg

Source: http://queenslandprospectingclub.org/in … areas#6487

#41

gcause
TrackIT Software Pty Ltd
From: North Brisbane, QLD
Joined: 07 October 2013
Posts: 1,073
TrackIT Software Pty Ltd
14 May 2014 10:49 am

Solomon great work was done by Ando and a few others to get these areas opened but didn't this happen over 9 months ago?


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#42

Solomon 009
Member
From: Bundaberg, QLD
Joined: 22 April 2014
Posts: 42
Member
14 May 2014 12:00 pm

Don't get me wrong I'm not having a go at anyone, who worked on getting new area's for prospecting.

Other than the mining dept. here in QLD, what they told me is Different to what is in the new legislation, so when I go out and prospect who do I listen to the law makers or the people who are police-ing it. No wonder no-one who is supposed to know, knows what the F@&% is going on.
It makes you wonder if anyone knows what is right or wrong.
Cheers all ..........Paul

Last edited by Solomon 009 (14 May 2014 12:03 pm)

#43

Piep
Member
From: Scarborough, QLD
Joined: 07 May 2014
Posts: 131
Member
19 May 2014 07:17 pm

I was about to reply with these rules about sluices and highbankers as I was certain they existed, only to find that they have disappeared
I have only applied for my fossicking license 2 weeks ago and the site stated clearly: nothing mechanical, no sluices, no highbankers. However, I also noticed there were 2 conflicting pages, both originating from the Department of Natural resources and mines. One site didn't exclude highbankers or sluices, just said "no machinery", the other explicitly mentioned and excluded the use of sluices and highbankers.
The latter page has disappeared completely when I tried accessing it today to read the rules and regulations again.

The still existing page says (http://www.qld.gov.au/recreation/activi … ctivities/):

Queensland Government wrote:

Permitted tools and extent of diggings
Hand tools such as picks, shovels, hammers, sieves, shakers, electronic detectors and other similar tools can be used. No machinery is permitted.
You can collect from the surface or by digging, but you are not permitted to dig below 2m of the natural ground surface of land or below 0.5m in streams. Overhangs and tunnels are not allowed.
On road reserves, no digging is permitted but collection from existing exposures is allowed.

It doesn't explicitly forbid, or even mention, sluices. I'm on the fence about a highbanker, as it may/could be seen as machinery. Then again, you fill it by hand...

The page that disappeared is www.mines.industry.qld.gov.au/mining/fossicking.htm* This page, or one of is subpages, clearly stated that the use of highbankers AND sluices wasn't allowed.

*The disapearence of this page can be explained by a recent change of rules and consecutive updates of the webpages, including cleaning up the old, obsolete and duplicate pages. Another explanation is that I can't see this page for now because my internet provider is messing with their DNS servers again...

#44

Piep
Member
From: Scarborough, QLD
Joined: 07 May 2014
Posts: 131
Member
19 May 2014 08:43 pm

I was going to print out the page with the rules I liked the best and staple that to my permit. At least that way I could show that I intended to follow those law/rules big_smile

Anyway, gone is the page with the most prohibitive rules, but the new one leaves a lot of questions. To me that is a sign that your copy writer should be sent back to school, if your readers end up with more questions than they had before reading your text.

#45

Piep
Member
From: Scarborough, QLD
Joined: 07 May 2014
Posts: 131
Member
19 May 2014 08:44 pm

I have a lot of questions about the 'where' as well...

#46

gcause
TrackIT Software Pty Ltd
From: North Brisbane, QLD
Joined: 07 October 2013
Posts: 1,073
TrackIT Software Pty Ltd
20 May 2014 06:49 pm

Ok this just got posted on another forum I am a member of:

Message Subject : Qld Fossicking Act has been ammended the changes are significant
Category : General Discussion
Posted by : busted knuckle mining

URL : http://queenslandprospectingclub.org/in … icant/8372

Message :
-----
emailed and asked B) .
John

Sorry about the late reply.

Fossicking means using hand tools only.

Hand tools are defined as follows :

(a) a pick, shovel, hammer, sieve, shaker, or electronic

detector; or

(b) a tool declared by regulation to be a hand tool.

The fossicking Act, which is the legislation that fossicking licenses are issued under, specifically forbids the use of machinery.

“Use of machinery etc. prohibited

A person fossicking under a licence must not use machinery

or equipment (other than a hand tool) to fossick.

Maximum penalty—400 penalty units.”

I believe a high banker to be machinery, which is prohibited under the Fossicking Act

Please call me if you have any questions.

Craig Watson

Senior Mining Registrar, Field and Land Access

Brisbane District Office

Mining and Petroleum Operations

Department of Natural Resources and Mines

Queensland Mineral and Energy Centre

Level 16, 61 Mary Street

Brisbane Qld 4000

PO Box 15216, City East Qld 4002

Phone: (07) 3199 7774 Fax: (07) 3405 5347

Email:

\n

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Website: www.dnrm.qld.gov.au
-----


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#47

elrodeo
Member
Joined: 15 February 2013
Posts: 248
Member
20 May 2014 09:51 pm

Hey Grant
Again it's still as grey as because he states "he believes a high banker to be machinery",
Does not state that it is machinery and nowhere in the act does it state that a highbanker is illegal.
If we are to believe this interpretation then may as well throw a sluice in the same bracket as the highbanker.
Like I've said in the other forum we have a few legal experts running their eyes over this but will be a little while until we have the consensus.

On another note, I gave up prospecting in Qld quite sometime ago, pretty much last time I saw you.
$25 for NSW state forest permit , 2.5hr drive and I'm on some very prosperous private land that's been producing good coarse and fine gold for quite sometime.
Doubt I'll ever dig in Qld again unless up the far north especially if the idiot do outlaw sluices and highbankers.

#48

gcause
TrackIT Software Pty Ltd
From: North Brisbane, QLD
Joined: 07 October 2013
Posts: 1,073
TrackIT Software Pty Ltd
20 May 2014 10:12 pm

Hey elrodeo I did the same I got my NSW permit and started to prospect over the border because of the draconian Qld laws. Then I had to head to Cairns for work so I am up in the gold country now looking for the mother load :-)

It might be time to move interstate the way the Qld fossicking laws have gone. WA, VIC or NSW not sure which yet. Shame about all that Geotourism Qld will miss out on at least the other states will benefit from it.

Glad to hear you are on the gold, best of luck with it.  smile


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#49

washgravel
Member
Joined: 21 May 2014
Posts: 63
Member
21 May 2014 12:12 pm

The amount of penalty units would worry me if caught doing the wrong thing in Qld since one penalty unit is $110 and the law says "A person fossicking under a licence must not use machinery or equipment (other than a hand tool) to fossick Maximum penalty—400 penalty units" which totals out to 110 x 400 = $44,000 fine.

Also if found on occupied land such as someone's Mining Lease then that is 50 penalty units so you are hit with a $5,500 fine and more than likely a Mining Lease holder would have some type of hidden bush surveillance camera system.

#50

gcause
TrackIT Software Pty Ltd
From: North Brisbane, QLD
Joined: 07 October 2013
Posts: 1,073
TrackIT Software Pty Ltd
21 May 2014 07:58 pm

Current Legislation wrote:

5 Meaning of fossick
(1) Fossick means—
(a) search for fossicking materials in a systematic or
unsystematic way—
(i) on the ground’s surface; or
(ii) by digging with a hand tool; or
(b) collect fossicking materials.
(2) However, a person does not fossick merely because the
person picks up a specimen of fossicking material the person
finds by chance when doing something other than fossicking.

This is the definition of fossick from the current legislation.

It does not refer to a Sluice, as a Sluice is not used to collect fossicking material.

It does not refer to a Highbanker, as a Highbanker is not used to collect fossicking material.

Current Legislation wrote:

38 Use of machinery etc. prohibited
A person fossicking under a licence must not use machinery
or equipment (other than a hand tool) to fossick.
Maximum penalty—400 penalty units.

Machinery must not be used to Fossick i.e. collect the material.

There is no mention of how you process this material.

If I choose to take buckets of fossicked materials home with me and process them or process them on site and run them through a Highbanker or Sluice to do so at that point I am not Fossicking (searching for or collecting material). I have already found the material and I am just processing it. If I wanted to do so I could just leave the fossicked materials sitting in the buckets for years in a shed, would I be breaking the law by doing that? What's the point in collecting the fossicked material if you aren't allowed to process it to receive the benefit of it? Does this mean if I pick up a gemstone out in the field and use a faceting machine to cut it or a grinding and sanding wheel to polish it to increase its value (i.e. process the material) I would be breaking the law? That would put a lot of jewellers out of business.

Fines are fair enough for people doing the wrong thing and ruining it for everyone but not for those trying to do the right thing and obey the laws and self regulate via Codes of Ethics like fill your holes, leave the site tidy the way you found it or better, etc.

Common sense must prevail we are not large mining concerns trying to gouge large holes in the ground like the super pits the best we can do under the act is a 2 metre deep hole and if you have ever dug one you will know how hard that is and that it's unlikely that 99% of people (hobbyists) covered by this legislation would ever dig one.

End of rant smile


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