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The Australian Capital Territory (Self-Government) Act 1988
is an Act of the Parliament of Australia
The Parliament of Australia, also known as the Commonwealth Parliament or Federal Parliament, is the legislative branch of the government of Australia. It is bicameral, largely modelled in the Westminster tradition, but with some influences from the United States Congress...
enacted on 6 December 1988, that establishes ‘a body politic under the Crown by the name of the Australian Capital Territory
The Australian Capital Territory, often abbreviated ACT, is the capital territory of the Commonwealth of Australia and is the smallest self-governing internal territory...
’ and is the Territory’s constitutional foundation.
From 1930 the ACT was administered by the ACT Advisory Council and the Minister for Territories and from 1934 had its own Supreme Court
The Supreme Court of the Australian Capital Territory is the superior court for the ACT. It has unlimited jurisdiction within the territory in civil matters , and hears the most serious criminal matters...
. In 1974 this council became a fully elected Legislative Assembly, advising the Department of the Capital Territory and in 1979 this became a House of Assembly of 18 elected members. Despite a 1978 referendum where Canberrans rejected self government by 63% of the vote, the sitting ACT Assembly was dissolved in 1986, and in December 1988, the ACT was granted full self-government
Following the establishment of self government in the ACT the first elections
Elections to the Australian Capital Territory Legislative Assembly were held on Saturday, 4 March 1989. This was the first direct election by voters in the Australian Capital Territory for their own legislative body....
were held in February 1989.