9 Jun 2014

Taranaki tribes praise regional council

6:49 am on 9 June 2014

Te Atiawa says it's embracing its new role with Taranaki Regional Council, after being refused representation on New Plymouth District Council.

In April, New Plymouth mayor Andrew Judd strongly encouraged his council to vote in favour of having Maori seats on the district council.

But seven councillors voted down the proposal to have iwi representatives appointed to standing committees with full voting rights.

Te Atiawa treaty claims negotiator Peter Moeahu said despite being rejected by the district council, the regional council was welcoming tangata whenua representation.

He said the connection his tribe had with both the mayor and the deputy mayor and few other councillors was exceptional, however the relationship it had with the majority of the New Plymouth District Council 'wasn't so flash'.

Mr Moeahu said Te Atiawa understood it would take a bit longer to persuade the district council that it was in their best interests to include iwi as the regional council had.

Taranaki Regional Council has decided to give iwi a voice at a sub-committee level.