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New Bill makes improvements for the Mâori benefit

New Bill makes improvements for the benefit of Mâori

Minister of Mâori Affairs Parekura Horomia welcomes the improvements to some existing legislation from changes proposed in the Mâori Purposes Bill 2007.

The Bill will promulgate changes or corrections to a number of pieces of existing legislation. Changes to four pieces of legislation give effect to Government priorities or correct anomalies, Minister Horomia says.

"One change in particular will assist this Government in meeting our commitment to settling historical Treaty claims by 2020."

Proposed changes to the Treaty of Waitangi Act 1975 include increasing the statutory cap on the ordinary membership of the Waitangi Tribunal from 16 to 20.

This will help the Tribunal meet its anticipated increase in workload.

"Another change marks a strengthening of the relationship between the Crown and Ngâti Tûwharetoa," Mr Horomia adds.

Proposed amendment to section 10 of the Mâori Trust Boards Act 1955 will update the annual payment paid by the Crown to the Tûwharetoa Mâori Trust Board ($1.5 million) as agreed under a new agreement relating to Lake Taupô.

Other proposed changes will also:

. standardise the voting age at 18 in the Mâori Trust Boards Act 1955;

. correct minor drafting errors in Te Ture Whenua Mâori Act 1993; and

. amend the Maniapoto Mâori Trust Board Act 1988 to establish a new Regional Management Committee to represent Maniapoto-affiliated marae from Kâwhia Harbour and provide for some other minor changes to the Act.

"On the whole, the changes are house-keeping in nature but important to the groups affected by these provisions," Minister Horomia says.

ENDS

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