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Beehive Bulletin

Beehive Bulletin - 21 November 2003

Maori fisheries allocation before Parliament

Legislation giving effect to the agreed model for allocating Maori fisheries settlement assets was introduced to Parliament this week. Fisheries Minister Pete Hodgson says the bill is a cause for celebration after more than 10 years of debate amongst Maori. Its passage will enable the beneficiaries of the 1992 Fisheries Settlement to receive more than $700 million in assets and use them for the economic and social benefit of all Maori. About half of the settlement assets will be allocated directly to iwi with the balance centrally managed. Two specialist trusts will be created to promote education and training for Maori and to advance Maori freshwater fishing interests. More than 90 percent of iwi agreed this allocation model should be presented to government, says Pete Hodgson.

Two big Auckland roading projects underway

The start of two new major roading projects this week shows Auckland continues to get much-needed attention on its infrastructure under the Labour Progressive Government. Auckland Issues Minister and Associate Transport Minister Judith Tizard helped turn the first sod for Stage 2 of the Central Motorway Junction, and attended the iwi blessing of the Greenhithe section of the Upper Harbour Corridor. Stage 2 of Spaghetti Junction, as Aucklanders know it, is the biggest roading construction contract in Auckland. The Greenhithe project is a critical part of the Western Ring Route. Completing these links is part of this government's commitment to providing a reliable motorway system for Auckland, says Judith Tizard.

Research on lifting student achievement boosted

A significant step in the government's strategy of boosting student achievement through quality teaching has been announced. Education Minister Trevor Mallard says 13 ground-breaking research projects selected from 180 expressions of interest will be undertaken in partnerships between education researchers and teachers around the country. The aim is to find out what works in lifting student achievement, and then to apply it in the early childhood, school and tertiary sectors. The New Zealand Council of Educational Research has been contracted to manage the programme on behalf of the Ministry of Education. A $1 million annual fund is available for this research a second year of funding in May 2004.

Public broadcasting debate urged

The importance of public service broadcasting in developing New Zealand's national identity has been reasserted by the government. Broadcasting Minister Steve Maharey told a meeting of broadcasters in Wellington that the principles of public service broadcasting have been revitalised and placed at the heart of the government's broadcasting agenda. Public service broadcasting was not about producing a haven of nostalgia or 'worthy but dull' programming. Steve Maharey says to get the mix right it's important to have a lively national conversation about how New Zealanders want to see themselves and their aspirations explored and portrayed.

Second Taranaki iwi settlement completed

The Ngati Tama Claims Settlement Bill has been passed by Parliament. Treaty Negotiations Minister Margaret Wilson says marks the settlement of long-held historical grievances in Taranaki and the beginning of a new era of progress. Representatives of Ngati Tama were in the House to witness the passage of the Bill. Margaret Wilson encouraged all New Zealanders to read the iwi's history, which she says makes clear why New Zealand must persevere with treaty settlements. This is the second of eight Taranaki settlements. A Deed of Settlement, involving financial redress of $14.5 million for Ngati Tama, and recognising and protecting sites particularly significant to the iwi, was signed in December 2001.

More young New Zealanders able to travel and work abroad

The international popularity of New Zealand's Working Holiday Scheme is to see an increase in the number of places made available. Foreign Minister Phil Goff announced an extra 6000 places will be added next year to New Zealand's current limit of 25,000, with further increases possible in following years. The Working Holiday Scheme allows people from 16 countries who are aged between 18 and 30 to work in New Zealand for up to a year. The additional places will include an extra 1000 young people from the United Kingdom, 700 from Ireland, 1200 from Canada and 1000 from Germany. Under the reciprocal agreements involved, equal additional numbers of young New Zealanders can work overseas for up to a year in these and other partner countries.

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