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Fact Sheet: Treaty Settlements Customary Interests


Summary of Cultural Redress Instruments used in Settlements of Historical Treaty of Waitangi Claims

Instrument name - Key features

Statutory vesting of fee simple estate - Provides ownership (title). Rights to use and manage may vary according to type of site.

Statutory vesting and gifting back of sites of significance - Ownership of site of outstanding significance (e.g. Aoraki/Mount Cook) is vested in the claimant group who then (after a specified interval) return it unconditionally to the Crown for all New Zealanders.

Statutory vesting of riverbed or lakebed - May be available for beds of rivers or lakes of great significance to the claimant group - where it is also legally possible. Vests the riverbed or lakebed only, not water, and involves protection of existing property, use and access rights.

Statutory vesting as reserve - Site is vested in the claimant group as a reserve under s26 of the Reserves Act 1977, and the claimant group holds and administers the site under that Act.

Overlay classifications (Tôpuni, Taki Poipoia or Kirihipi) - Applies to highly significant sites on land administered by the Department of Conservation (DOC): recognises a statement of the claimant group's associations, describes their values and principles, and identifies actions to avoid harm to these.

Statutory Acknowledgements - Applies to sites of significance (including rivers, lakes, mountains, wetlands and coastal areas) where land is owned by the Crown: acknowledges a statement of the claimant group's associations, and enhances the claimant group's ability to participate in specified Resource Management Act 1991 process.

Advisory Committee appointments - Provides for the claimant group to advise a Minister directly on specified matters - for instance, advice to the Minister of Fisheries in relation to a taonga fish species.

Deeds of Recognition - May follow from Statutory Acknowledgement (SA). The Minister responsible for managing the land subject to SA acknowledges a statement of the claimant group's associations, and agrees to consult and have regard to the claimant group's views on specified matters.

Protocols - Issued by a Minister (e.g Minister of Conservation). Sets out how the relevant department will exercise its functions, powers and duties in relation to specified matters in the claimant group's area of interest, interact with the claimant group and provide for its input into decision-making.

Camping entitlements (Nohoanga or Ukaipo) - Entitlement to camp temporarily on specified Crown-owned land, for the purpose of lawful gathering of traditional foods and other natural resources.

Place-name changes - Usually to a dual Maori/English name. Provides visible recognition for the claimant group.

Joint Advisory or Management Committee - Can be established under s9 of the Reserves Act 1977 or s56 of the Conservation Act 1987 to advise on or manage a site or area of importance to both the claimant group and the Crown. Such committees will usually be made up of representatives of both a claimant group (or groups - if the site or area is important to more than one claimant group) and DOC.

Source: Office of Treaty Settlements, Healing the Past, Building the Future: A Guide to Treaty of Waitangi Claims and Negotiations with the Crown, 2002, p 100.

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