Go to top of page

Power Boat Permit Checklist

The use of power boats is generally controlled in Lake Burley Griffin (the Lake) under the provisions of the Lakes Ordinance 1976 which are administered by the National Capital Authority (NCA). In addition to these provisions, when using a powered boat on the Lake, you may also need to comply with Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA) – Domestic Commercial Vessel (DCV) National System. Depending on your vessel you may require additional approval to the boat permit. Please use the guide below to assist you in determining your obligations for vessel access on the Lake.

The NCA issues boat permits to powered boats used for private recreational use (e.g. fishing boats and RHIB’s). These vessels are allowable but must use auxiliary (electric) motors whilst on the Lake. Petrol motors do not have to be removed from boats but, except in the case of an emergency, they are not permitted to be used on the Lake. There is currently no charge for NCA issued boat permits.

Section 26 (Lakes Ordinance 1976) – Boat Permits

  • Category 1 - Conventional powered boats used as rescue, coaching or judging boats in support of aquatic sports
  • Category 2 - Electrically powered and solar powered boats and trailerable yachts with auxiliary power (including those power boats which will be using auxiliary power while on Lake Burley Griffin)
  • Category 3 - Boats used for Lake management, special interest boats (such as ‘traditional boats')
  • Category 4 - Commercial tourist use (eg ferries)

Section 26 (Lakes Ordinance 1976) requires NCA Delegate approval.

Section 33 (Lakes Ordinance 1976) – Licence Agreement – Commercial Activities on Lake Burley Griffin

A Section 33 Licence Agreement application must be submitted to the NCA if you wish to conduct any of the following activities on, or on the shore of the Lake:

  • Selling, or offering for sale, food, drink or other articles or goods
  • Letting, or offering to let, on hire bicycles, boats or other articles
  • Carrying, or offering to carry, passengers, articles or goods in or on a boat for fee or reward
  • Carrying on the business of boat repair

If you meet any of the criterion in this section you are will require a Section 33 Licence Agreement in addition to your Section 26 Boat Permit.

Section 33 (Lakes Ordinance 1976) requires NCA Delegate approval.

AMSA – Domestic Commercial Vessel (DCV) – (Marine Safety (Domestic Commercial Vessel) National Law Act 2012)

Do any of the below apply to you:

  • Is your vessel used in connection with a commercial activity?
  • Is your vessel used in connection with a government activity?
  • Is your vessel used in connection with a research activity?
  • Will your vessel be used at any point in the above mentioned activities?
  • Do you receive money from the operation of your vessel?
  • Is the vessel owned by a secondary or primary school and being utilised by people who are not students at the school?
  • Is the vessel owned by a community group and being utilised by people who are not members of the community group?
  • Is your vessel used in connection with enabling trainees to obtain licences that are needed to meet legislative requirements (i.e. boat licences, diving licences)?
  • Is your vessel used as a volunteer search and rescue vessel?

If you meet any of the criterion in this section and are uncertain if you are subject to the National Law, please contact AMSA on the National System Hotline on 1300 517 246: national.system@amsa.gov.au [External Link] for assistance in determining your obligations under the Marine Safety (Domestic Commercial Vessel) National Law Act 2012.

Boat Permit Application

After reading the above information and determining:

  • the Boat Permit Category which applies to your vessel;
  • if you require a Section 33 Licence Agreement; and
  • if you need to contact AMSA; then
  • download the Power Boat Check List and Power Boat Permit Application here, follow the steps and submit to natcap@nca.gov.au

For further information contact the NCA via natcap@nca.gov.au.