Northland economist Darryl Jones says the region now ranks third when it comes to approval for grants from the Provincial Growth Fund.
Northland took an early lead in securing grants for community projects when the $3 billion fund was launched last year.
But Mr Jones said it had now been overtaken in the funding stakes by Te Tai Rāwhiti and the West Coast.
He said Northland was quick off the mark because it had a number of projects ready to go and costed out, but the other five eligible provinces had now caught up.
Northland has been allocated more than $150m from the Provincial Growth Fund, about half of it for forestry ventures.
Nearly 50 projects have been approved in the north and about 70 were declined.