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Significant agreement for NRC and Te Uri o Hau

Date: 06 August, 2012

Significant agreement for NRC and Te Uri o Hau

The Northland Regional Council and Te Uri o Hau have rekindled their ongoing relationship, signing a special agreement giving the Kaipara hapū a more active role in the management of its tribal area.

The Office of Treaty Settlements recommended a number of parties enter into a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Ngati Whatua sub-tribe as part of the settlement of a Treaty of Waitangi grievance claim by Te Uri o Hau in 2003.

The council and hapū felt it was time to update the historic MoU to reaffirm the partnership after changes to governance and staff in both organisations.

Signatories at a Whāngārei ceremony which recently (subs: Wednesday 01 August) formalised the new memorandum included senior representatives of the regional council and Te Uri o Hau Settlement Trust.

All parties have hailed the signing as a significant milestone that will bring a number of environmental, economic and social development benefits to the signatory organisations and the wider community.

Regional council Chief Executive Officer Malcolm Nicolson says the memorandum comes off the back of the recently released hapū environmental management plan – Te Uri o Hau Kaitiakitanga o te Taiao.

“The new environmental plan marked an historic milestone for the Kaipara hapū’s role in managing its natural and physical resources,” says Mr Nicolson.

“The plan, alongside a proposed habitat and wildlife strategy for Mangawhai – Te Arai Wildlife Areas – and today’s MoU, are all great initiatives from Te Uri o Hau.

“The regional council is building strength in its relationship with Te Uri o Hau and the MoU provides a way for us to work together to better support their objectives.”

Te Uri o Hau Chairperson Mihi Watene says the new MoU rekindles the relationship that the hapū embarked on many years ago.

“One of the key issues for us is the ongoing management of the Kaipara Harbour, which sits within the Northland and Auckland regions and is impacted by the land use rules of at least five different councils,” says Mrs Watene.

“The MoU will enable us to look at synergies in planning regimes and provide for better co-operation in the management of the harbour as a whole.”

Mr Nicolson says the health of the Kaipara Harbour, which receives fresh water from two-thirds of Northland’s catchments, is high on the regional council’s agenda.

“The Integrated Kaipara Harbour Management Group – an initiative led by Te Uri o Hau that also includes the region’s three district councils, the regional council, Department of Conservation and others – looks holistically at the health of the harbour,” he says.

“The MoU with Te Uri o Hau builds on the work of this group as a footprint for a better working relationship and the development of a streamlined and integrated regime for the Kaipara Harbour.”


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