29 Mar 2012

Maori settlement bills passed

12:01 pm on 29 March 2012

Two bills settling historic claims of Bay of Plenty-based iwi have passed their final hurdle in Parliament.

The Ngati Manawa Claims Settlement Bill and the Ngati Whare Claims Settlement Bill had their third reading on Thursday.

Under the legislation, Ngati Manawa get control over sites of significance and $2.6 million to help iwi undertake projects of cultural revitalisation.

For Ngati Whare, its legislation also sets out a package for cultural redress and includes a $1 million dollar payment to help manage the regeneration of 609 hectares of Whirinaki Crown forest land which is gifted to it.

Three sites of cultural and spiritual significance will also be jointly vested with both iwi.

As well, they will have equal representation on a newly created Rangitaiki River Forum in order to protect and enhance the wellbeing of the river catchment.

Waipa River legislation passed

Parliament also passed the Nga Wai o Maniapoto (Waipa River) Bill.

The legislation sets up a co-governance and co-management arrangement of the Waipa River between the Government and Ngati Maniapoto.

The bill complements the Waikato River settlement and the Waikato River co-management deeds with Ngati Tuwharetoa, Raukawa, and Te Arawa River iwi.

Together the arrangements contribute to establishing a single, unified co-governance framework for the Waipa River and the Waikato River.