Jan - March

Ngati Toa sets Te Reo goals
The lower North Island tribe, Ngāti Toa, wants all of its members to be speaking or learning Te Reo Maori in four years' time.

And, in about 25 years, it aims for the language to be used in at least half of all tribal homes.

The iwi has developed a strategy to help people learn Te Reo at home and integrate it into their daily lives.

Ngati Toa chair Taku Parai said the plan would lead to members being more culturally active and bring them closer to the tribe......

Fish & Game Welcomes Landmark Water Quality Win
Fish & Game is describing the Environment Court decision on Hawke’s Bay water quality as a “landmark” which will have an impact nationwide.

The Hawke’s Bay iwi Ngati Kahungunu took the case to the Environment Court to challenge the Hawke’s Bay Regional Council’s proposal to change the way it manages water quality in its regional plan.

Ngati Kahungunu argued that the regional council could not allow groundwater quality to be further degraded and that the council must also recognise and provide for Maori culture and traditions with taonga such as water.

Ms Jordan said the decision is important for all Maori.

“The court has told the Hawke’s Bay Regional Council that it must not only protect water from further degradation, but actually improve its quality if it is to meet its obligation to Maori.”....

Govt accused of denying Maori of rights
The former MP for Te Tai Tokerau, Hone Harawira, is accusing the Government here of similar tactics to the Australian Government, which is proposing to shut down remote Aboriginal communities

Mana Party leader Hone Harawira, who lost his Te Tai Tokerau seat in the last general election, said the Australian Government's proposal was 'blatant racism', which denied indigenous people there the right to live on their customary land.

He said New Zealanders should be making a strong statement about the fact this country's government operated a similar denial of service to remote communities by cutting off the unemployment benefit to Maori who wanted to return home.

He said they were unable to go back to certain communities without having their benefit removed.

Mr Harawira said that was a different way of handling it, but had exactly the same effect of denying Maori the right to live where they lived in their own country.....

Northland result: Maori Party wants to leverage its new power
The Maori Party says homelessness in the regions is an issue, and is vowing to use its new power in the House to tackle it.

The support of the party is more critical to the government from today, with National's majority in the House reduced in the wake of Winston Peters winning the Northland seat off National's Mark Osborne yesterday....

Whenua in need of restoration
Ngati Whatua o Orakei and Auckland Museum are enlisting scientists and community members to conduct a bio blitz.

Entomologist Ruud Kleinpaste says the aim of the 22-hour event is to identify and record all the species living in Pourewa Reserve and Kepa Block.

The land on the side of the valley running inland from the Orakei Basin was returned to the hapu as part of its historic treaty settlement.......

Iwi identify 36 cultural assessment sites
The Auckland Council says only 36 bids to carry out work on sites of cultural value have been identified by local iwi, which need further scrutiny, something that's surprised the authority.

That is out of a total of 300 applications in the past year to March.

The involvement of the 19 local iwi is through the council's rule book, the Proposed Unitary Plan, which required the tribes to play a part in the cultural impact assessments.

The council's chief planning officer Roger Blakeley said the process provided an assurance that it was doing what was needed......

Partnership debate continues
The debate over the controversial Te Arawa Partnership Model continues, with the Rotorua Pro Democracy Society hosting its own information and debate sessions.

About 50 people attended the first Rotorua Pro Democracy Society information session last night at the Ngongotaha Hall, with about 40 people attending the tenth and final Rotorua Lakes Council information session on the proposed partnership at Lynmore School earlier that evening.

The council meeting was led by Strategy and Partnerships group manager Jean-Paul Gaston.

Rotorua Pro Democracy Society co-founder Reynold Macpherson emphasised the group was not anti-Te Arawa or anti-Maori.

"We are not anti-Te Arawa and we are not anti-Maori but we are pro democracy.

"Te Arawa Maori and Maoridom broadly have not been consulted. This is an agreement by a small group of people."

The society has a 14-member committee, which includes district councillors Mike McVicar, Rob Kent and Glenys Sereancke, who introduced themselves to the group.

Committee member Blanche Kingdon said, "I am afraid to say I am one quarter Te Arawa but I am definitely pro democracy."

Mr Macpherson told the group the society had plans to march to the submitter hearings in purple colours.

"We will march at the hearings in a mass, a colourful mass, and our t-shirts will be chosen because it's the colour of power in ancient Rome. Purple is also the colour of Rongopai, the Christian peace that came to New Zealand with the missionaries.".......

Submissions pour in on Te Arawa proposal
More than 450 submissions have been received by the Rotorua Lakes Council regarding its controversial Te Arawa Partnership Proposal.

As of yesterday the council's Strategy and Partnerships group manager Jean-Paul Gaston said a total of 467 submissions had been sent to the council.

He said a complete analysis of the submissions had not yet been done, but of the 420 submissions registered, exactly 50 per cent of submitters had answered "yes" to the first question, "Do you support in principle the intention to effectively partner with Te Arawa", with 50 per cent saying "no".

The submission period ends on April 17 with hearings for those who want to be heard in person to support their submission being heard on April 22 and 23....

Auckland Council sticks by iwi approval rule for consents
Auckland Council is sticking with a new rule requiring owners to seek iwi approval for work on their land.

The council has confirmed its support for the "cultural impact assessments" in the proposed Unitary Plan, or new planning rulebook for the city.

Lee Short, spokesman for Democracy Action, an organisation set up to oppose the rules, said: "The cost of cultural impact assessments is imposed by Mana Whenua, the decisions are made by Council and property owners are left to pick up the bill."

"The 3,600 designated sites of value to Mana Whenua have, to date, not been verified by the Council."

"The council appears completely unwilling to verify if these sites of value to Mana Whenua even exist. The designation of these sites as being of value simply has no basis in fact. Many sites have been disturbed, destroyed or no longer exist."....

Threat 'impacts all indigenous peoples
A Maori researcher says the threat of shutting down remote Aboriginal communities impinges on the rights of all indigenous people around the world.

Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott announced his government could not afford to keep funding indigenous communities that were too far away from amenities, such as schools or hospitals.

Director of Te Kotahi Research Institute at Waikato University Leonie Pihama called on people to speak out.

She wanted tangata whenua there to do all they could to help Aboriginal people because they're were living on their homelands.

Supporting their struggle meant Maori and supporting the global indigenous people's struggle, she said.

DHB continues to increase Maori staff
Maori representation of the Hawke's Bay District Health Board's (DHB) workforce continues to increase as it works towards a more "culturally competent workforce".

At the end of January, 12 per cent of the workforce described themselves as Maori, up from 11 per cent for January 2014, a report states. The DHB, Hawke's Bay's largest employer, aims to help increase its engagement with Maori through a more representative workforce - Maori comprise 25 per cent of the region's population - as well as staff training.

We continue to promote the recruitment of Maori to all hiring managers and utilise our Maori networks to promote roles to Maori," the report said.

All staff have training courses available such as Engaging Effectively with Maori and on the Treaty of Waitangi.

Ms McKenna said about 27 per cent of Hawke's Bay nursing graduates were Maori but many went into other health sectors or left the region.

Canterbury DHB 2015 Maori and Pacific Scholarships
To be eligible for a Canterbury DHB Māori and Pacific Scholarship you must:

* be a student enrolled at a Christchurch tertiary institution. Year 3 medical students intending to come to Christchurch for Years 4 and 5 will be considered

* be studying a health-related, NZQA accredited course, of at least 12 weeks duration; and/or

* have whakapapa and cultural links with Māori communities

* have genealogical and cultural links with Pacific communities...

Wellington's new National War Memorial Park opens
Wellingtonians can now access the new National War Memorial Park after its Maori Blessing this morning.

Pukeahu Park is the biggest project in the Government's First World War centenary commemorations.

Around 220 iwi representatives from around the country attended the dawn blessing this morning, with groups moving around different parts of the park to bless it.....

Māori and Pacific University students unite against racism
Over 40 Maori and Pacific University of Auckland students were interviewed regarding the everyday colonialism and racism they face while at university.

"You're only here because you're Māori and Pacific and you qualified for the Tertiary Admission scheme" - an alternative admission scheme for applicants of Māori and Pacific ancestry into tertiary programmes.

These are just some of the racist remarks lecturer David Mayeda says Māori and Pacific students face while being here at the University of Auckland.

"Learning to cope with every day racism in kind of modern forms of colonialism was something that helped them succeed in higher education," says Mayeda.

Te Rarawa and Ngāti Kahu descendant Chloe Manga who is in her final year of studying a Bachelors in Law and Arts says she joined the "I, Too Am Auckland" campaign because it is important to address what she says is personal and institutional racism at the University of Auckland.

"It's more about raising awareness about racism here at the University for Māori and Pacific students and also talking to non-Māori and Pacific about what they can do to benefit our people and for our future," says Manga.....

Maori representation omissions spark complaint
A flyer circulated by the Local Government Commission prompted a further complaint to the Auditor General today, this time alleging misrepresentation of the nature and role of the Maori Board and the Regional Planning Committee on the proposed Hawke’s Bay Council.

Napier ratepayer Sarah Taylor, who lodged the complaint, said a full-page diagram depicting the future composition of the amalgamated council on the flyer titled "Hawke’s Bay Councils - proposed changes" completely ignores the iwi appointed representatives on the Maori Board and Regional Planning Committee.

"Any reader of the document scrutinising the full page diagram would easily be led to believe that recommendations for special representation of iwi interests within the amalgamated council structure had been shelved", Ms Taylor said.

Moreover, placing the Maori Board and a Regional Planning Committee under the heading "elected representatives" is a material misrepresentation because members of these panels are appointees and were not elected, she said....

Council consultation ignoring urbans
Tamaki Makaurau MP Peeni Henare is questioning how councils and government agencies are engaging with urban Maori.

He says constituents have come to him to express their disappointment with the way Auckland Council has managed consultation on its 10-year plan.

"A lot of people talk about how the council and other agencies are really good at engaging with iwi, but my question on that is what about the fastest growing iwi in the country which is urban Maori? We just don't seem to be able to fins a voice in this iwi-ccentric agenda being pushed not only by regional councils or local bodies but also in central government and that’s a big concern," Mr Henare says.

Airport name change date to be set
The timing of Hawke's Bay Airport's name-change to Ahuriri Airport Hawke's Bay could coincide with the completion of a $5 million terminal upgrade late next year.

But the airport company said yesterday its board was keeping an open mind on exactly when the name would change.

The decision to add Ahuriri to the airport's name followed a request from local treaty claimant group Mana Ahuriri Incorporated and was supported by company's shareholders the Crown, Napier City Council and Hastings District Council.....

Two new Māori Language Commissioners have been appointed
Two new board members to Te Taura Whiri i te Reo Māori, the Māori Language Commission, have been confirmed by the Māori Development Minister, Hon Te Ururoa Flavell.

“Ms Poutu is an outstanding example of the new generation of Māori language speakers who have grown up immersed in Māori culture and language.

The two new board members will join Chair Mr Ērima Hēnare, Dr Kātarina Edmonds and Te Awanuiārangi Black on the Te Taura Whiri i te Reo Māori board...

Should political parties consider strategic deals in Māori seats?
Should political parties consider strategic deals in Māori seats? It's a manoeuvre which is usually seen in general seats, including the Epsom deal between National and Act, but is rarely seen in Māori electorates.

As the Northland by-election nears closer, it's no secret Labour is all but backing Winston Peters. But how well does that sort of strategy go down with Māori voters and what would it look like in Māori electorates?

Willow-Jean Prime is still out garnering votes, despite the Labour Party backing Winston Peters.

She says, “In the past that type of strategy has been heavily criticised but perhaps the political playing field is changing.”.....

Far North votes down Maori wards
Far North electors have voted against establishing Maori wards for the 2016 and 2019 Far North District Council elections.

The council resolved last year to poll electors on whether dedicated seats for Maori should be provided at the council table. Voting documents were sent to 38,946 electors on the General and Maori Parliamentary electoral rolls in February, just over 35 per cent of them being returned. A strong majority, 68 per cent (9315 votes) were opposed, with 31.5 per cent (4309) in favour.

"We made a decision as a council to be guided by the community on this issue. The result does not diminish our commitment to improving our relationships with Maori, or involving them in our decision-making processes."

The Council would now seek feedback from Maori about other non-electoral representation options.

"There are a number of options available, including the establishment of a Maori standing committee, representation on standing committees of council through to advisory board appointments. We will fully explore whichever options are preferable to Maori," Mr Carter added.

The council would also continue to korero with Maori about non-electoral engagement options such as developing strategic partnership agreements with iwi and hap, communicating more effectively with Te Kahu o Taonui (Tai Tokerau iwi chairs) and promoting more collaboration between the Northland Councils' Chief Executive Officers' Forum and the Iwi Chief Executives' Consortium......

Iwi 'bypassed' on Maori ward vote
Locals have rejected the option, with two thirds of respondents saying no to dedicated seats.

Post-settlement group Te Runanga Nui o Te Aupōuri said there was poor promotion of the poll and few Māori knew about the ballot.

Its secretary, Peter-Lucas Jones, said the council failed to take advantage of the tribal networks to spread the word about the poll.

"They've kind of bypassed iwi with this process that gives initiated and completed," said Mr Jones.

"In hindsight, I believe that this could've been communicated more clearly through working with iwi around opportunity to tribes and how to raise awareness of voting".....

Māori growers a strong voice in kiwifruit industry referendum
A record number of Māori growers participated in the grower referendum for the Kiwifruit Industry Strategy Project (KISP) and Te Awanui Huka Pak is praising their efforts.

In a press release today, Te Awanui Huka Pak Chair, Neil Te Kani said, “Māori are a key driving force in the kiwifruit industry, and the KISP process was about ensuring that this industry creates wealth for Māori both now and for future generations.”

He says that, "With over 90% support for all recommendations, the kiwifruit industry is in a strong position to deliver a strong economic growth platform for Māori."

As a result of the KISP process, the grower representative body, New Zealand Kiwifruit Growers Incorporated (NZKGI), will establish a dedicated seat for Māori representation.

Te Kani affirms that Māori are an integral part of this industry and deserve a seat at the table. He says, "We have a responsibility as kaitiaki to ensure our future generations inherit a vibrant and successful industry. I am proud of the way Māori have made the most of this opportunity to have their voices heard."....

New name for Otonga Road School
A Rotorua primary school has celebrated its Maori heritage with the announcement of a new name.

Otonga Road School will now be jointly known as Te Kura o Tihiotonga, with its new sign officially unveiled on Friday.

The school's kaumatua, Dr Ken Kennedy, joined principal Linda Woon for a special assembly to mark the occasion.

After a haka led by pupils, Dr Kennedy spoke about the history of the school site, which sits on the intersection of four blocks of Maori land in Springfield......

Should Te Reo be compulsory in schools?
Te reo Maori should be compulsory in New Zealand schools, Race Relations Commissioner Dame Susan Devoy says.

Being bi-lingual would be "a real added advantage" to young Kiwis, she said, and would help race relations....

Can some lizards derail a new house?
This is a tale of a breath-taking rip-off.

It's about a decent hard-working guy merely trying to build a house.

He is being gouged financially as part of the planning and consent process.

Remember this bloke is just trying to get a resource consent to build his home.

He doesn't have it yet. And then it got even more farcical.

Under local planning rules and the Resource Management Act he must consult with local iwi groups.

They must be notified of his plan to cut down some of the native bush.

All six interested iwi groups have to be contacted.

Some of these iwi groups live hundreds of kilometres away from the building site, but have historical connections to the area.

Three of these groups have so far asked for initial site visits.

These don't come cheap either. One of the iwi is charging $240 an hour, plus travel costs (and excluding GST).

This iwi goes on to say should a proper cultural impact assessment be needed they will provide the details of the costs involved.

Another iwi group say they see the trees as "taonga in need of protection from climate change, disease and ongoing development and they generally oppose the removal or felling of native trees".

They also want an initial site visit to assess whether a wider cultural assessment is needed - but the kaitiaki (guardian) can't do it till April.....

Archaeologists discover pā site
Preparations to start work on the Waikato Expressway has provided an opportunity to uncover a past.

A team of archaeologists have found evidence of burrow and storage pits as part of a large pā site believed to be dated back to the 15th Century.

For these archaeologists, it's like a gold mine.

Hohepa Barton says, “This use to be a garden. These were three other pā sites that connect to this garden, Te Uapata, Te Pā o Mahuta Te Pā o Tahou and also Tara Heke.”

Archaeologists and Waikato Tainui have started collecting and preserving items from New Zealand's buried past, in preparation for work to start on the $458 million Huntly section of the Waikato Expressway....

Iwi fears mining will pollute waterways
A Hauraki iwi, Ngāti Tamaterā, fears its tribal waterways could become polluted because of mining work by a company running tests at Karangahake, south of Paeroa.

Members of the iwi have rallied alongside a small group called Protect Karangahake, with both opposing New Talisman Gold Mines' operation.

They protested outside the Waikato Regional Council.

The group of about 15 people sang before its chair, Duncan Shearer, presented the council with water from the Waitawheta River, in what looked like a cup and corked jug made from clay.

He said they were there because of water.

He told members of council, including the chair, Paula Southgate, that the water he held was clean enough to drink, and is consumed by people of Paeroa.

"I want to make sure it stays like this for future generations."

After the proceedings, 26-year old Rebecca Brownlee, who is a Ngāti Tamaterā descendant, had some strong words for the council.

"I just want to say, use your common sense. I mean, you've already raped this country enough.....

Parihaka redress on the table
Parihaka people hope yesterday’s visit from Treaty Negotiations Minister Chris Finlayson will kick start progress towards acknowledging the crown’s past actions against it.

The village on the western slopes of Mt Taranaki was sacked in 1881 by armed constabulary trying to end a campaign of passive resistance to land confiscations.

Ruakere Hond says Parihaka falls outside the government’s treaty settlement process because it is not an iwi or hapu.....

Feed the Kids Bill fails to gain Government support
Parliament has debated the Feed the Kids Bill, however, it won't pass the first reading as it’s failed to gain support from the Government.

Around 60 children at Windley School are fed breakfast every morning, and the principal says it's a similar number for children without lunch.

Rhys McKinley says, “There's breakfast on every morning at 7.30 - 8.30 and children just turn up. Some parents turn up and have a kai with their whanau and so it makes it more of a family atmosphere and no pressure on them to be embarrassed for having no breakfast in the morning.” ......

Ministers meet with Taranaki Māori to discuss important issues
A ministerial delegation including Prime Minister John Key is being held in Taranaki over the next few days meeting with local whānau, hapū, iwi, and Māori organisations.

The events are part of the 2014 Relationship Accord, Te Tatau ki te Paerangi, between the Māori Party and National.

The agreement creates more engagement by key ministers with Māori, regionally.

Those on this particular visit includes Prime Minister John Key, Treaty Negotiations Minister Chris Finlayson and the Māori Party Co-leaders Marama Fox and Māori Development Minister, Te Ururoa Flavell.

This engagement events allow the Prime Minister the opportunity to share at a local level progress being achieved for Māori across priority policy areas. Eight Taranaki iwi will meet with the ministerial group tonight to discuss the important issues in their region.

A closed meeting will also be held today between the Crown and local iwi at Parihaka Pā to discuss ways in which the historic village can be acknowledged and supported in the future. Once discussions have formed an agreement, details will be made public.....

Far North votes against Maori seats
Far North voters have voted more than two to one against the introduction of Maori wards.

Mayor John Carter called the poll over the opposition of iwi, who expected today's result.

Just over 35 percent of electors voted, with 9315 votes against the introduction of Maori wards and just 4309 for the proposition.

The result means the issue can't be brought up for another two elections.....

Mixed views among iwi on selling quota
Seven Te Tai Tokerau iwi have asked to be allowed to trade their fisheries' assets on the open market.

The unnamed northern tribes made the trading suggestion in a submission on the way Māori fisheries could be governed in the future.

They argue the quota could be bought and sold in the same way as are other treaty assets.

Waikato-Tainui, however, has a different view, arguing the quota needs to be kept in Māori hands.

And the third largest iwi by population - Ngāti Kahungunu - does not want tribal-owned quota to be sold to non-Māori......

$15,397 unpaid rates write-off
More than $15,000 of rates arrears is expected to be written off as unrecoverable by the Clutha District Council at its corporate services committee meeting today.

Chief executive officer Steve Hill said the approach was common for councils across New Zealand and the amount of money was ''minor in the scheme of things'' for the district.

The council would need to take action against each owner individually and with up to 200 owners per parcel of land, it would cost more to collect arrears than what was owed.

The corporate services committee decided total rates arrears of $11,481.50 on 21 blocks of Maori-owned land should be written off in 2011.

The total outstanding rates for 22 blocks of multiple-owner Maori land to June 30, 2013, was $14,436.47, the total outstanding to June 30, 2014, was $15,397.64.....

Messy data on Maori judges
The Māori legal profession is questioning why the Government's data on the number of judges who identify as tāngata whenua is out-of-date.

Officials first told Radio New Zealand there were 28 judges of Māori descent, but later conceded the tally was wrong.

There are approximately 243 judges in Aotearoa and the new figures show 31 of those are of Māori descent.

Māori lawyer Tai Ahu said it reflected badly and the Government needed to be more vigilant.

"It demonstrates a lack of monitoring so there needs to be systems in place that monitor the number of Māori judges.

He said it was vital to know exactly how many there were as an increased understanding of tikanga, or Māori culture and tradition, is becoming a necessity in addressing issues that arise in the courtroom....

Iwi select Hokitika as site for apologies
The Government is set to say sorry to South Taranaki-based iwi Ngaruahine in a South Island town close to its historical heart.

As part of its Treaty settlement deal, the Crown agreed to deliver its official apology to the iwi at a venue of their choice.

Ngaruahine's lead negotiator Daisy Noble said it was decided the most appropriate place for that to happen was in Hokitika....

Close to one million spent on Māori commercial fisheries structure review
Close to a million dollars was the total cost for a report reviewing the Māori commercial fisheries structure.

A figure which has been criticised by a number of people, as well as the main recommendation to get rid of Te Ohu Kaimoana.

The MP for Te Tai Tonga says Te Ohu Kaimoana has landed the big one.

Rino Tirikatene says, “$600,000 for five months work, 135 page pretty half-baked report is unjustified.”....

New resource for teaching maths in Te Reo
A new resource for teaching maths at primary school has a particular focus on teaching the subject in te reo Maori.

The book 'Mathematics and statistics in the middle years: Evidence and practice' has been published by the New Zealand Council for Educational Research and edited by Robin Averill, a Senior Lecturer in Victoria University of Wellington's School of Education.

Dr Averill said the book was a joint project between researchers and teachers that gave teachers access to a wealth of academic research.

She said each chapter gave practical advice on how to achieve the Ministry of Education's Maori teaching standards.....

Age, education puts Maori behind in self-employment
A report has found Maori were half as likely to be self-employed as the total population.

Analysis of 2013 census data by the Ministry for Business, Innovation and Employment found just 10 percent of Maori were self-employed, compared to 19.8 percent of non-Maori.

This could be because Maori are relatively younger, with lower qualification levels than other New Zealanders.

More than 21,000 Maori ran their own business, of which two thirds were sole traders and 6800 were employers.

The total self-employed for all ethnic groups was 365,000, including almost 130,000 employers.

Over 60 percent of self-employed Maori work in the service sector, a quarter are in the goods-producing sector and 11 percent in the primary sector.....

Historic Auckland building sits on spring
The Catholic church says its plans to restore an historic central Auckland building are in doubt because the site has been classed as significant to local Maori.

The church's Auckland Diocese owns Newman Hall, a 150-year-old listed building in Waterloo Quadrant near the High Court.

The Diocese aims to develop the land behind it, thus funding conservation of the grand old house.

But the property is also home to a fresh water spring that was essential to life at two local pa and their surrounding gardens.

Called Wai Ariki, or chiefly waters, the spring has been listed as a Site of Significance to Mana Whenua under the incoming unitary plan, and the church says it now does not know what it can do with the site.

Mana whenua scheduling, requiring property owners to seek iwi approval for work on their land, has been controversial.....

Trust, youth, benefit from land values
The asset base of one of the country's biggest Maori businesses is up $3 million, from rising land valuations and a new farm purchase.

Tauhara North No 2 Trust, listed fifth on the Deloitte top nine Maori business entities, declared assets of $317.8 million for the year to June 30, 2014, up on 2013's $314.5 million.

Trust chief executive Aroha Campbell and chief executive of Ringa Matau (the trust's commercial subsidiary) Kevin McLoughlin, said land values had risen and a 900ha sheep and beef farm has been bought at Te Whaiti in the latest period.....

Donna Awatere-Huata's involvement in Maori fisheries report may 'unnerve' industry
Convicted fraudster Donna Awatere-Huata was on the committee which agreed to pay a barrister $600,000 for a six-month review of the Maori fisheries body.

Fairfax last week revealed Wellington barrister Tim Castle received almost two-thirds of the $915,000 review of Maori fisheries' commercial structures.

Castle was selected by 11 members of a panel of representatives.

Awatere-Huata is a former ACT MP, jailed in 2009 for two years and nine months for fraud after taking more than $80,000 from a government-funded trust for under-privileged children.

After eight months of her sentence she was released on home detention.

She was paid $4000 to represent unnamed "Maori organisations" on the panel.

The news will further trouble iwi and fishing industry representatives who meet Monday to discuss Castle's contentious report......

First Nations Visit To Swap Ideas With Iwi
If anyone wants to see what Tino Rangitira could look like Paul Stanley urges a visit to the First Nations Listuguj clan.

Stanley (Tainui/Mataatua) is chief executive of the Listuguj Mi’gmaq Government in Quebec, Canada where he has management responsibility for the police force, emergency services, river and forest rangers, road maintenance, water supply and waste water, education, health, welfare, as well as for a range of businesses run on behalf of the Listuguj people.

He points out that many of the services that would come under central or local government control in New Zealand are the responsibility of the Listuguj Mi’gmaq Government.

“Our advantage in Canada is we control the integration of health, schools, policing and social services ourselves.”.....

Newspaper inspired by Te Arawa success
A Māori newspaper editor says she was so inspired by the success of a Te Arawa newspaper she decided to launch a local Whanganui version.

Te Putake Whanganui Region Māori News published its first edition in January and is a joint venture with the Wanganui Chronicle.

Co-editor Kiritahi Firmin said her team felt it was important to keep Whanganui iwi informed, especially after signing its Treaty settlement, Te Ruruku Whakatupua, with the Crown last year......

Remissions & Postponement of Rates on Maori Freehold Land
Section 102 (4) of the Local Government Act 2002 states that a local authority must adopt a policy on the postponement of rates on Māori freehold land.

Section 102 (3) of the Local Government Act 2002 states that a policy adopted may be prepared and adopted as part of the long-term Council community plan.

Section 87 of the Local Government (Rating) Act 2002 allows a local authority to postpone all or part of the rates on a rating unit if the local authority has adopted a postponement policy, the rate payer has applied in writing for a postponement and the local authority is satisfied that the conditions and criteria in the policy are met.

The Council may provide 100% rates remission of any rates except targeted rates on Māori freehold land to all ratepayers who meet the objectives, conditions and criteria of this policy. This remission of rates on Māori freehold land policy is prepared pursuant to Sections 102 (4) (f), 108 and schedule 11 of the Local Government Act 2002......

Innovative new youth court for Tauranga
A new youth court for Tauranga will place a stronger focus on addressing offending by young Māori says Justice and Courts Minister Amy Adams.

Ms Adams today spoke at the opening of the Rangatahi Court at Hairini Marae in Tauranga.

The Rangatahi Courts, a judiciary-led initiative, were established in 2008 to provide a better rehabilitative response to Māori young offenders by encouraging strong cultural links and involving communities in the youth justice process. The Tauranga court is the thirteenth to open.

“For many young people, appearing in court can be a foreign experience. Because of that fundamental disconnect, it is all too easy for some of them to dismiss the process,” says Ms Adams.

“The Rangatahi Court does things differently by placing young offenders in a setting where they can take ownership of their offending, with the support of whānau, kuia and kaumātua. It’s an environment that helps them reconnect with their culture.”.....

Māori politicians show support for Aboriginal communities
Māori politicians are weighing into the debate and controversy over a proposed plan to close more than 100 of Western Australia's remote Indigenous communities.

Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott publicly supported the plan and late last year Aboriginal elders lead a protest outside of state parliament against the move.

According to Australia's ABC News, Tony Abbott believes that if people choose to live in areas where there are no schools or jobs, there is a limit to what they can expect the state to provide.

"What we can't do is endlessly subsidise lifestyle choices if those lifestyle choices are not conducive to the kind of full participation in Australian society that everyone should have," Abbott says......

Ngā Whenua Rāhui celebrates 25 years
"Ngā Whenua Rāhui exists to protect the natural integrity of Maori land and to preserve Matauranga Maori, so that the values, stories and history associated with our natural taonga are not lost to the world."- Sir Tumu Te Heuheu, the foundation chair of this Fund....

Mātauranga Kura Taiao Fund (sub link)
The Mātauranga Kura Taiao is a contestable fund supporting hapū/iwi initiatives to retain and promote traditional Māori knowledge and its use in biodiversity management.

The fund is part of the New Zealand Biodiversity Strategy, which gives recognition to tangata whenua and matauranga Māori in biodiversity management.

See full article > http://www.doc.govt.nz/about-doc/news/stories/2015/march/nga-whenua-rahui-celebrates-25-years/

Few votes on Maori Far North council wards
Less than a third of Far North residents have so far voted on whether to create Maori council wards for the district.

The council has put the idea to a binding poll which closes next Tuesday.

Dedicated Maori seats have become a hot topic for councils, most recently splitting New Plymouth district and being rejected by the public in Nelson.

Yet after two weeks of the Far North District Council referendum, only 30 percent of eligible voters have sent in their ballots.....

Hawke's Bay hapū concerned over granting of water consents
With two water bottling plants in the Hawke's Bay area recently being granted water consent to draw millions of litres of water a year that is destined for the overseas market, it has local iwi and hapū concerned over the numberof water consents being granted to draw from the areas main aquifer.

This site is owned by One Pure International, and is being turned into a 24 hour a day water bottling plant, that will fill around 30,000 bottles of water an hour, with consent granted to draw just over 400,000 cubic metres of water from the Heretaunga aquifer.

Iain Maxwell of the Hawke's Bay Regional Council says "There's no indication at the moment that the takes that in the area where these water bottling plants that suggests there are concerns."......

Iwi regain Aupouri forest
Part of Northland’s Aupouri forest in New Zealand has been returned to local iwi by the Crown after leasing the land for almost half a century. Source: Radio New Zealand

The Crown leased the land for 99 years in 1966 but that was later negotiated down to the end of the first forest crop.

The Parengarenga Incorporation manages the $42 million worth of assets for 3000 Far North iwi members and works mainly in farming and forestry.

The return of the almost 750-hectares of land to Parengarenga will allow the business to replant and continue forestry development in the area......

Wave wall about to take shape
“We are working with local iwi to find a suitable motif to put on the front of the panels that symbolises the three iwi and Mauao's association with Te Awanui,” says Tony.....

Kura lack teaching technology
A Victoria University lecturer says schools are missing out on digital resources to help boost the use of Te Reo.

Tabitha McKenzie said when it came to technology, kura lag behind.

Every fortnight, Ms. McKenzie holds a lesson for teachers of Natone Park School where Te Reo is spoken regularly. Her job is to increase their Te Reo and work to develop the use of Māori in the classroom.

But her lessons don't have your traditional lines on the blackboard approach, with each teacher issued an iPad.

"So we've moved away from the traditional method of just being face to face and are moving towards using a blended approach so using mobile devices."

"I try to use apps as well as videos or podcasts. So in that way when they aren't with me in the off weeks, they are still able to have access to the material and to the learning, so it's going to that idea of language on the go: anywhere, anytime."......

Police, health, courts most trusted by Māori
Māori in general trust the police and health system more than other institutions, Statistics New Zealand said today.

New research from Te Kupenga 2013, a survey of Māori well-being, showed police and health are the top-rated institutions by Māori, closely followed by the courts and education. The ‘system of government’ and media institutions are rated lowest......

Maori fisheries body review cost almost $1 million
A review of the Maori fisheries body cost almost $1 million – with two thirds of that paid to one barrister for six months' work.

The report recommends Te Ohu Kaimoana (the Maori Fisheries Trust) be scrapped and assets transferred to iwi.

Wellington lawyer Tim Castle charged $600,000 for his 135-page report. There was just over $37,000 in disbursements. The total bill for the review was $915,000, with $278,000 going towards fees and expenses for the trust's committee of representatives, production and distribution of the report and a meeting....

Wellington Police Maori Advisory Board | Iwi Representative
Wellington Police Maori Advisory Board | Iwi Representative – Seeking Registrations of Interest

We are seeking registrations of interest for an iwi representative to sit on the Wellington Policy Maori Advisory Board. This group is made up of 6 Wellington regional members consisting of iwi and wider Maori community representation.

The board meet quarterly, invited to attend special meetings on as needed basis.

Should you have the capacity to represent Ngati Toa in this position please send your CV reference.........

Craftily chipping away at democracy
What is even scarier is this ever-growing push to have unelected people making decisions that should really be made by those we have voted on to council.

Those councillors should listen to all groups before making a decision, but that decision should only be made by elected members.

In Tauranga, we have a constant push for a Maori ward.

That is unacceptable to most voters because it takes us out of the equation. I certainly believe in one person, one vote, and all votes being equal.

Because the idea of a Maori ward is so unpopular among most voters, some clever clogs seem to be switching the angle of attack to completely take it.........

Maori and Indigenous Researcher Directory launched
Māori Development Minister Hon Te Ururoa Flavell is proud to have launched Te Hononga Pūkenga - the Māori and Indigenous Researcher Directory today in Wellington.

"This online and interactive directory is a milestone in Māori scholarship. It gives Māori, public and private interests the opportunity to connect easily with some of the nation’s leading indigenous experts," says Mr Flavell.

The new directory has been initiated by Ngā Pae o Te Māramatanga - New Zealand’s Māori Centre of Research Excellence.

To date, Ngā Pae has over 500 Māori doctorates working with whānau, hapū, iwi, Māori and indigenous communities around the country and internationally.

It has supported a diverse range of research projects crossing areas such as architecture and design, biology, biotechnology, business, economics, education, environment, health, law and media.....

Māori Development Minister supports call for Te Matatini funding boost
The Māori Development Minister supports the call for consideration of more Government funding for Te Matatini.

Te Ururoa Flavell told Native Affairs, he will continue to attempt to influence other Government Ministers to increase the support and funding provided to the world’s largest Māori Performing Arts Festival.

Recent figures released by Māori Television show that over 1 million viewers tuned in to watch the online and television broadcast of the event this year. Thousands more also attend the biennial event.

Native Affairs investigated the amount of funding provided to Te Matatini by the Government in comparison to funding received by the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra and Royal New Zealand Ballet.

The Ministry of Culture and Heritage provides Te Matatini with $1.2 million dollars a year. The Royal New Zealand Ballet receives close to $4.4 million a year and The New Zealand Symphony Orchestra receives $13.4 million a year.....

Maori approach to Maori health issues required - researcher
Māori approaches to Māori health issues are required to improve the health of the Māori population which is a national priority, a University of Canterbury researcher says.

Health sciences lecturer Annabel Ahuriri-Driscoll says there are nationwide concerns about Māori health and it comes as no surprise that Māori are at the top of the statistics for poor health.

She says the current state of Māori health is a product of inequities fostered in the settlement and colonisation of Aotearoa New Zealand, perpetuated in prevailing social structures. Statistics New Zealand figures for 2010 to 2012 show that Māori could expect to live seven years less than non- Māori.....

Te Arawa plan damages local democracy
With the council's 8-5 dismissal of our attempts to remove bias and predetermination from the consultation documents, the Rotorua Pro-Democracy Society urges all citizens to make a submission. Each of us must decide to defend or dump democracy.

The Te Arawa Partnership Plan, Option 2, is not democratic. The proposed Te Arawa Board will recommend unelected nominees to be appointed to committees of council. These nominees will sit alongside elected councillors with the same voting rights. Together, these nominees and Te Arawa-affiliated councillors will have disproportionate power......

Race unity crucial for young New Zealanders
The Human Rights Commission is urging young Northland people from all cultures to take part in or attend the upcoming Race Unity Speech Competitions taking place at the end of March.

“Our changing face is younger and more ethnically diverse than ever before. Positive race relations shouldn’t be things our young people read about in class: they must live it every day,” said Dame Susan.

“We live in one of the most peaceful nations on earth but can’t afford to take this for granted: it’s something we’re all responsible for.”

Statistics indicate that 14.2 per cent of people in Northland were born overseas, with England the most common birthplace. After English, te reo Maori is Northland’s next most common language which is spoken by 28.5 per cent of Maori people.....

Billionaire backs out of access agreement
New Zealand's richest man has reneged on guaranteed public access across his land to one of the country's most beautiful beaches.

To get approval to buy his $50 million farm in Northland's Helena Bay, Russian mogul Alexander Abramov promised to provide a legal right of way to the Walking Access Commission.

The Overseas Investment Office (OIO) allowed the billionaire steel magnate to buy his 215-hectare farm, north of Whangarei in January 2009 - on condition he provide public walking access over his land in partnership with the WAC. But instead, he has granted the right of way to local iwi Ngatiwai.

The troubled Mokau Marae, about 5km from the estate, will in practice manage access to most of the route. One large section of the track will be only for the Mokau hapu and "special guests".....

Tribunal ponders 'unfair' Crown methods
An urgent hearing into processes the Crown used in the establishment of Tuhoronuku and the Ngapuhi Treaty of Waitangi settlement led to a busload of Ngapuhi hapu members travelling from Kawakawa to Wellington.

The Waitangi Tribunal hearing, held on Wednesday and Thursday, comes after a series of conferences and hearings were held looking into the Ngapuhi settlement. At a two-day Waitangi Tribunal judicial conference in June last year, submissions were made as part of an application for an urgent hearing by key groups opposing Tuhoronuku, the group whose mandate to negotiate Ngapuhi settlements was recognised last year by the Crown.....

Iwi plans Rotorua Lakefront casino
A proposed casino/hotel comprising between 150 and 200 beds sited on Rotorua’s Lakefront has been described a game changer for the city.

And it appears the Pukeroa Oruawhata Trust, valued at $180 million, is close finalising the deal, television news programme Te Karere has reported.

If approved, if could bring in some $500 million annually.

The trust, which owns the bustling central mall east of the core of the CBD, has confirmed it is looking into a 5-Star hotel/casino.....

Proposal to abolish Te Ohu Kaimoana
A proposal's in place to abolish the fisheries body - Te Ohu Kaimoana.

It's one of a number of plans from a review of how the Māori quota is managed.

Iwi are no small player in the fishing industry; the tribal-owned company Aotearoa Fisheries owns half of the consumer brand Sealord.

The review - by the Wellington barrister, Tim Castle - was always on the cards; the timing of the evaluation is locked into fisheries legislation.

He said the single most significant finding and recommendation he makes is that Te Ohu Kaimoana should now be wound-up.

The nature and funding of any new body would have to be decided by iwi.

Other suggestions include giving iwi greater control of Aotearoa Fisheries, and that its board directors are appointed by tribes.

Iwi have been calling for more clout over the firm....

Pukana and Pakeha for first time
Maori Television’s award winning children’s show Pukana intends to slip in some English language in a bid to widen its audience.

Co-producer Alecia Haua says Pukana now has the freedom to weave in a small amount of English naturally and subtly into the Monday programme.

She says it will allow the show to grow its audience base and hopefully excite enough of its non-fluent audience into taking the next step into learning Te Reo...

NZTE Powers up Māori Business Team
New Zealand Trade and Enterprise (NZTE) is increasing its support for Māori businesses wanting to grow internationally, with two new appointments to its Māori business team.

Dale Stephens and Tina Wehipeihana-Wilson have both been appointed customer managers.

NZTE Director of Māori Business Liz Te Amo says that NZTE is focused on unlocking the power of the Māori export economy by working with more Māori companies, collectives and leaders to create more successful international companies....

Discharge site on island could give Maori access
A controversial decision to use Matakarapa Island as the discharge site for Foxton's wastewater could have a silver lining for Maori opposed to the plan.

Horowhenua District Council voted 7-4 on Wednesday night to endorse the island as the discharge site after five hours of discussion.

The move is opposed by Ngati Whakatere, and other Horowhenua and Manawatu iwi, as they have several urupa on the island.

The iwi are opposed to it being used for the discharge of Foxton's treated waste because of concerns graves will be sprayed. At present they are unable to access the sites to maintain these graves because they are on private land...

Rangitāiki River document now published and released
Prepared by the Rangitāiki River Forum - a partnership between iwi and local councils - the document will guide future management of the Rangitāiki River catchment through the vision, desired outcomes and objectives for the river and its land....

Criticism over pass rate drop
Education leaders are unhappy with the big drop in the number of Maori and Pasifika students getting University Entrance (UE).

Only a third of last year's Maori and Pasifika Year 13 students got the qualification, down from half the previous year.

COMET Education Trust chief executive Susan Warren said poor UE results would worsen the under-representation of Maori and Pasifika students at universities.

"We've already got not enough Maori and Pasifika kids coming through to university. This is going to make that worse......

Lawyers round on Tribunal funding
A group of lawyers says the Crown shouldn't be in charge of funding the Waitangi Tribunal.

The Human Rights Lawyers Association complained of what it called a power imbalance between the Crown and Māori groups.

The lawyers said there was an inherent tension because the Crown must contribute funds to Māori in order to prosecute claims against the Crown.

They said the Crown should take a hands-off approach to paying for the Tribunal's operations.

In a feedback document to the Ministry of Justice, the association said the Waitangi Tribunal and Crown law were under considerable pressure to cut costs.

It claimed the system worked to the detriment of whānau, hapū and iwi, who have suffered prejudice through past actions of the Crown, which now funds their attempts to remove that prejudice.....

Maori Party calls for racism inquiry
Following the quashing of Teina Pora's convictions, the Maori Party is pushing for an inquiry into the justice system over what it calls institutional racism.

The party has joined the discussion, with co-leader Marama Fox saying Mr Pora's case was another example of how convoluted, expensive and difficult it was to have injustices like this rectified.

She said an inquiry would find out why Maori were treated differently in the justice system.

Ms Fox said they suffered from institutional racism, and that in fact nobody wanted to hear those words; that every time someone did hear those words, they would start jumping up and down.

She said they would rather call it structural discrimination, which she called institutional racism in itself...

Iwi-owned fishery reports profit
A business owned by the King Country iwi Ngati Maniapoto has made yet another profit, making almost three-quarters of a million dollars last year.

Te Kupenga o Maniapoto holds and manages the tribe's settlement fish quota and draws its income from Aotearoa Fisheries.

The company has recorded a surplus every year since it started seven years ago....

Sorting out land $40m question
Solving access issues to Rangitikei's land-locked land is seen as having an economic spin-off for the region.

Such land, much of it Maori-owned, is surrounded by other properties and not able to be accessed by road and therefore difficult to use productively.

Mr Watson met Treaty of Waitangi Negotiations Minister Chris Finlayson last month to discuss the process.

About 20 per cent of Rangitikei's total area was land-locked and full use of it could generate up to $40 million in GDP, Mr Watson said.

"The absence of free and formal access to these lands has presented the Maori owners with an insurmountable challenge in terms of their ability to utilise their whenua for traditional proposes and to unlock the inherent development potential that exists in these properties," he wrote to the minister.

Maori had asked for council help, and it wanted to work with them and other land-owners to do so.

Much of the land is in the north of the district.

"It's very much going to be a long-term process ... There's a very, very complex Maori land court process," Mr Watson said......

Aotearoa Fisheries launches $30m fleet renewal
New Zealand's biggest Maori-owned fisheries company has announced a $30 million fleet renewal programme.

Aotearoa Fisheries announced today it had signed a deal with Nelson boat builder Aimex to build a state of the art fishing boat that will improve productivity and reduce environmental impact.

Aotearoa Fisheries does not own a fleet but contracts fishing companies to catch its quota.

It will help those companies purchase new "technologically advanced" boats with transitional funding, long-term access to quota and secure financing, chief executive Carl Carrington said....

Forestry leases returned to Maori owners
Associate Primary Industries Minister Jo Goodhew joined Maori owners and the community in Northland today to celebrate the surrender of a 740 hectare forestry lease.

The ceremony included the felling of the final trees to mark the end of what was originally a 99 year Crown lease. The trees are to be replanted by the landowner, Parengarenga A Incorporation.

The initial Crown lease had a term of 99 years from July 1966. In 1999 a variation to the lease was negotiated between the Crown and the Incorporation with the lifetime of the lease reduced to the end of the first crop.......

Action needed on Maori representation
Labour MP Adrian Rurawhe would like to see cross party support among Maori MPs for changes to the way councils deal with Maori representation.

Under the law, if councils opt for Maori wards, the decision can be overturned if opponents petition for a referendum on the issue - the only aspect of local government reorganisation where such a referendum is binding.

Both New Plymouth and the Far North councils are running polls on on Maori wards, which are widely expected to be lost.

Mr Rurawhe says Maori representation should be standard in local government, but it won’t happen without changing the rules....

Smoking ban on volcanic cones
The Tupuna Maunga o Tamaki Makaurau Authority has voted to make Auckland’s volcanic cones alcohol and smoke-free.

Chair Paul Majurey says the sight of cigarette butts and discarded bottles and cans is not conducive to the living connection communities have with these important places.

He says the decision has the unanimous support of mana whenua, Auckland Council and the Crown co-governance parties who lead the Maunga Authority....

Centre to be school's Maori heart
Motueka High School has raised $468,000 toward building a new cultural education centre that will be the heart of the school's efforts to raise Maori student achievement.

In May, the school will learn if the Lottery community facilities committee will fund the balance of the $1.1 million centre.

The school has 80 students in the whanau class, a Maori form class that includes about half of the school's 140 Maori students as well as a few European New Zealanders and some international students. They meet in the whanau class at the beginning and end of the day and when they do, they occupy a standard classroom: 44 square metres of classroom painted orange and built 60 years ago.

The concept of a Maori cultural centre has been part of the school's strategic vision for the past decade but only gathered momentum with the appointment of its new head of Maori language in late 2013.

He said the school would continue to hold significant events, such as the whanau class prizegiving and teacher development days, at Te Awhina.....

Waatea kura puts culture and identity to fore
South Auckland’s newest kura hourua-partnership school was opened this morning by Education Minister Hekia Parata.

Manukau Urban Maori Authority’s Te Kura Maori o Waatea in Mangere is enrolling tamariki aged 5 to 8.

Ms Parata praised MUMA for taking up the opportunity that National's coalition with ACT made possible, and doing it in the context of culture, language and identity.

MUMA chief executive Willie Jackson says the authority wants to inspire aspiration and educational achievement in the community.

He says the kura meets the needs of some South Auckland whanau eager to see their tamariki thrive and prosper in a supportive holistic environment that incorporates Maori pedagogy and proven teaching methods....

Iwi leader says no to white supremacist vote
A Taranaki Maori leader wants the New Plymouth District Council to challenge the need to hold a referendum on whether it can create a Maori ward.

Grant Knuckey says the referendum, which was triggered by a petition opposing the Maori seat plan, could turn the city into the centre of white supremacy in the South Pacific.

He says having proper Maori representation on council is about ensuring Maori interests get a fair hearing, not about giving any special privileges.

" In the last 150 years it hasn't been very pleasant being Maori with a brown face, certainly in this community because we've lost a heap of stuff from the confiscations.

Maori support picked for flag change
" When Maori were asked which flag did they want to represent them, the blue ensign, our current New Zealand flag was put up as an option. And I think somewhere between 80-90 per cent of Maori said 'no', they didn't feel that represented Maori interests. So in terms of gauging where Maori are at, I'm picking that some of that sentiment may spill into this process in this debate. And I wouldn't be at all surprised if Maori actually wanted change " he says.

Malcolm Mulholland says anyone including Maori is free to make suggestions on a flag design, with the panel choosing four to put to a first referendum.

The winner of that vote will then be matched up against the current flag in a second and binding referendum.....

Council poll could bar far north Maori ward
The Far North District Council has sent out postal voting forms on whether it should introduce Maori wards.

Iwi have opposed the poll, saying if the council was serious about having Maori at the table it should not have to get permission from the wider public.

Mayor John Carter says the council doesn’t have a view on Maori wards but it’s a decision that needs to be made by the community rather than the council...

Special privileges for Maori replace doing the right thing
Howie Tamati, sole Maori councillor on the New Plymouth District Council, sees the granting of Maori wards on local councils as a step in the right direction, telling Radio New Zealand it is "not the right answer but a start". He is wrong, very wrong.

New Zealand is a democracy and democratic rights of the individual should be sacrosanct.

In no way is such a course an acceptable substitute. Democracy in our country is something we should never, ever sacrifice in the name of meeting some other objective...

Marae pay price of poor insurance check
A Maori financial broker says some insurance assessors are listing Marae as public halls, which drives up the cost of cover for pa.

Chief executive Tina Wilson said Marae sometimes had to pay more because insurance assessors did not understand what tangata whenua value.

She said they did not understand what Marae want and need, and sometimes classed them as a public hall.

Ms Wilson said there need to be more Maori working in the industry.....

Treaty settlement 'landlocks' bach
Bach owner Jim Harre and his family have been coming to their west Auckland holiday spot for more than 40 years.

Others came before them; the property at Te Henga (Bethells Beach) has been there since 1934.

But according to Mr Harre, planned Treaty of Waitangi Settlement legislation would mean the building would become 'landlocked'.

Te Kawerau a Maki is returning to the area and reclaiming some land, some of it shouldering the bach.

Of course, the iwi occupied the land long before people built seaside baches with spectacular views. But raiding northern Maori forces ran the tribe out of its rohe (area) and forced descendants into exile in Waikato. Colonials then swooped in and bought swathes of ancestral land.

Jim Harre says what is contentious here is not what the tribe is getting back, but instead the Crown's provision of access to his bach, as arranged through the Treaty negotiations.

"I support the settlement. I'm personally delighted that Te Kawerau a Maki are formally returning to Te Henga and will continue to be the tangata whenua in this area," he says.

"The first time we became aware of this settlement was August 2014, six months after the Crown has signed the settlement".....

Wastewater discharge site 'short-sighted'
The preferred location for future discharge of Foxton's wastewater is a short-sighted and insensitive choice, critics say.

Staff at Horowhenua District Council have named Matakarapa Island, which lies inside the Manawatu River Loop, as the best option for disposing of the town's treated sewage.

One of those present told the Manawatu Standard two-thirds of those in the public gallery had opposed Matakarapa Island as the discharge site during consultation.

It has historical importance to iwi in Horowhenua and is home to both a former pa and several burial sites.

Ngati Whakatere spokesman Troy O'Carroll said the site was especially important to iwi, as many Maori are buried there.

"We've got people, who are alive, who have siblings in there."

A marae was once at the site too, he said....

Police coming to a kura near you
The police are planning to dispatch fluent Maori speaking officers to Kohanga Reo, Kura Kaupapa and secondary schools in south Auckland.

Inspector Nga-Wati Chaplow said officers want to get closer to Maori at an early age.

"By the use of Te Reo we are starting to touch our Maori youth at the very earliest point in their lives. The presence in itself, which we've never had, is going to make a difference".....

Submissions show discontent at claim process
Te Tai Tokerau MP Kelvin Davis, who was seconded onto the committee for consideration of the bill, says the majority of submissions are in favour.

" People are in favour of the Bill moving forward but they aren't happy with the process, they're not happy with the length of time it's taken, they're not happy that they're only getting a fraction of what the settlement should be. But they're prepared to accept it in a sake of progress and moving forward for our people up here " he says...

Poll call looms for Maori ward
Tauranga Maori are checking the numbers to decide whether a poll is necessary in relation to a Maori ward seat on Tauranga City Council.

City councillors voted unanimously against the measure in November last year.

However, the council decision can be challenged if five percent of the roll demand a poll.

The petition must be finalised and submitted by February 28, Tauranga Moana Tangata Whenua Collective chairperson Puhirake Ihaka told the Tanga Whenua/Tauranga City Council Committee.....

New Plymouth to spend $80k on poll
New Plymouth is to spend about $80,000 to conduct a poll over whether Maori should have an automatic right to a council seat.

The district council this week validated a petition calling for a binding citizens-initiated referendum on the establishment of a Maori ward and a ballot will be held in May.

Last year, the council voted 7-to-6 to establish a Maori ward at the local government elections in 2016.

A resident, Hugh Johnson, then organised a petition to force a referendum on the issue.

Mr Johnson says the issue is too important to leave to councillors alone.

"I believe we are one country and I believe in democracy. I believe there are changes to go on in local government in this sort of nature that people should have a say. Hence this referendum."

The Mayor, Andrew Judd, said he would respect the result of the referendum but would continue to seek improved engagement with Maori regardless of its outcome.

Ballot forms posted on question of dedicated Maori wards
Far North residents have until March 17 to have their say on whether the council should bring in dedicated Maori wards.

Voting forms in the postal ballot have been sent to all Far North electors and arrived in most letterboxes this week.

Last year, the council decided to hold a binding poll about setting up dedicated Maori seats at the council table for the 2016 and 2019 local elections.

If a majority of votes are in favour of Maori wards, the council will determine the number of general and Maori wards - as well as the number of councillors for each - when it conducts a representation review later this year.

Mayor John Carter said the council was committed to working more closely with Maori but it did not have a view on dedicated Maori wards.....

Christian camp fails to block wāhi tapu status
A campground north of Wellington has lost its fight to stop land being declared wāhi tapu.

Waikanae Christian Holiday Park - which is known as El Rancho - had argued against the Māori Heritage Council's decision to designate some of its whenua as sacred to Māori.

But the Court of Appeal has sided with Heritage Council and the High Court, which earlier blocked a bid for a judicial review.

The campground argued against on a number of issues, including unsuccessfully asserting that the heritage body did not consider the adverse effects of the registration of the wāhi tapu site on the value of the land.

But the Court of Appeal said the legislation did not require or suggest that economic effects on landowners need to be considered.

Kayak business hit by rahui on pond
A two-week ban on using the Pandora pond has shut down Pandora Kayaks.

The rahui, issued by Napier claims settlement entity Mana Ahuriri after discussion among kaumatua, said there should be no swimming, waka ama training or similar water sports for the next two weeks, and no gathering of seafood for three months.

It is a traditional Maori mark of respect for the man found dead in the water on Tuesday, and for the area where he was found.

Council approves Te Arawa proposal for consultation
The public consultation period for the Rotorua Lakes Council's controversial Te Arawa Partnership Proposal is set to begin.

In an extraordinary meeting of the council yesterday, Rotorua Lakes councillors voted 9-4 in favour of approving the proposal for public consultation.

An extension of the consultation period from March 27 to April 17, as well as an increase to 10 public information sessions, were among the key changes made to the original proposal process.....

Language loss due to colonisation - Iwi leader
A Māori language leader in the Far North says Professor Timoti Karetu's comments blaming iwi for the loss of Te Reo is unreasonable, and it would be unfair to blame the victims of colonisation.

But, Te Rārawa Chief, Haami Piripi, said there were historic and legitimate reasons why some iwi were struggling to keep their language alive.

"That's more like blaming the victim, you can't blame the victim for the circumstances we find ourselves in" Mr Piripi said...

Te Arawa to draft cultural values on water
The central North Island iwi collective of Te Arawa is talking about developing a list of cultural values to help explain why water is important to the tribes, which it hopes to share with other iwi.

Te Arawa members have met twice already to discuss values, as part of a project to identify what those are.

Tribal leader Sir Toby Curtis said he planned to deliver the information to the Iwi Chairs Forum to take back to their iwi, before passing it on to the Government.

He said the Crown saw water as a commodity to be sold on, while Maori saw the water as a commodity to pass on to future generations.....

Natural that te Tairawhiti leads the way with bilingual signage
The introduction of bilingual signage on emergency service vehicles in the Tairawhiti region is a first for the country and something we can be proud of.

It is also the sort of thing we should expect more of, and want more of . . . as the only district with half its population Maori, and the highest proportion of Maori able to speak te reo — a third, along with plenty of non-Maori.

In launching the initiative, Te Taura Whiri i te Reo Maori (the Maori Language Commission) spokesman Wayne Ngata said government departments and agencies were being asked to support the revitalisation of the language, “and bilingual services and signage is a critical part of that support”. He acknowledged Gisborne District Council’s commitment to this, as well as the local emergency services — which will roll out the bilingual signage over coming months.

Naturally, not everyone supports this kaupapa. Someone who commented on the story online, but opted for it not to be published in the paper, said: “Too much Maori!” “Maori is a second language, it shouldn’t be on emergency vehicles,” they wrote. “Every New Zealander speaks English . . . if you don’t then you can identify the vehicles by their colours/patterns.”

Mike Loftus responded: “Thank you for confirming that ignorance is alive and well in Gisborne. Maori is an official language of Aotearoa and was indeed the only language here for hundreds of years. Te reo Maori is something special to the people of this country regardless of their being Maori or Pakeha. It’s something we should be proud of. It’s usage does far more to bring all New Zealanders together than divisive remarks will ever accomplish.”

Many children in this district are being educated bilingually, and benefiting from this across all their learning. They will also pick up other languages more easily.

The district’s children in general are also fortunate to be introduced to te reo at our early childhood centres, kindies and primary schools.

Over time, the acceptance and celebration of the beautiful first language of Aotearoa will grow.

Ngāi Tahu academic is appointed to panel on new NZ flag
Hana O’Reagan has been appointed by the Government to a panel charged with engaging the public on a possible new flag for New Zealand.

The academic and te reo Māori advocate is one of a few notable Māori to have been chosen for the panel of 12 New Zealanders nominated by a cross-party group of MPs.

The Ngāi Tahu descendant said today that she is honoured to be appointed, and is pleased that indigenous representatives will be included in the discussion......

Te Arawa entity wants to develop new leaders
The fear that valuable knowledge will be lost when the present generation of Kaumatua die is prompting a confederation of tribes to develop new leaders.

"There are some within Te Ao Māori [Māoridom] who on any Marae would be able to hold their own. But flicking into Te Ao Pākehā [modern world] some would struggle. Similarly those who are in Te Ao Pākeha, who are business leaders may not necessarily have the skills to cope in Te Ao Māori. The object of the exercise is to bridge that gap," he said.

Te Arawa leader Sir Toby Curtis supported the programme but stressed that Te Reo was important because it helped give a leader credibility and enabled them to see the world differently.

"If we don't convince our young people that they need the Reo to help them in their development in a Māori economy, [then] they're only helping pakeha [to] become pākehā orientated in the economy....

Support Needed for Maori Education Relationships
New Zealand First is demanding more than talk from the Ministry of Education on building relationships between schools and whānau.

“The Auditor-General’s report on Māori education released yesterday confirms that Boards of Trustees need more support from the Ministry to build relationships between schools and whanau,” says New Zealand First Spokesperson for Māori Affairs Pita Paraone.

“The Ministry has declared the future success of Māori education relies on schools and whānau working together....

Academic places loss of language at feet of iwi
A former Maori Language Commissioner is blaming some iwi for the loss of the Maori language.

Professor Karetu said in Te Reo that the school system was not to blame for the Maori language dying out, but with some individual iwi.

"Instead what I'm saying is, and it follows what you said Nanaia.... there is still a place for iwi (in the Māori language strategy) but they can't do it by themselves, right? because, and I've said this before, it is iwi that have caused the language to be lost, it isn't the schools, it is because (some) iwi aren't speaking the language"...

NZQA defends Maori exams
The Qualifications Authority is defending criticism from a kura body over how two Maori language exams are credited.

Nga Kura a Iwi o Aotearoa, which oversees 25 tribal schools, said Te Reo Maori and the total immersion paper, Te Reo Rangatira, were worth 12 credits each, and was unfair to students sitting the Reo Rangatira exam.

He said the Maori exam assessed a students' ability to learn it as an additional language, and in this context there was a need for the instructions in the examination to be in English.....

Indigenous food sales fall short
A Crown-run indigenous food brand has missed its takings target, earning four times less than it wanted.

The Storehouse turned in $83,549 - well below an annual budgeted forecast of $417,481.

The business is operated by the New Zealand Māori Arts and Crafts Institute, which also trades as Te Puia, the large visitor attraction in Rotorua....

How well does the education system support Māori?
The Auditor General says some schools believe they have better relationships with whānau than whānau think they do.

It suggested higher decile schools and those with low proportions of Māori students might have to work more on their relationship with Māori whanau.

It said Maori needed to know who the people behind the school gate were.

The Auditor-General said teachers should not be surprised to learn that small things, such as regularly meeting whānau at the school gate, could affect the quality of relationships....

Northland touring route to get Maori makeover
The Northland Twin Coast Discovery route will undergo a Maori makeover as part of a regional strategy to boost the economy.

The $1.5 million proposal to modernise the touring route will focus on a Pou trail and information hubs throughout Northland to form a more authentic Tai Tokerau experience for visitors.

George Riley from Northland regional council's economic development division, said it was an opportunity for Maori to overlay the Twin Coast Discovery route with their own stories.....

$60,000 for Maori development up for grabs
$60,000 is up for grabs on the Kāpiti Coast for projects that develop Māori economic activity.

The fund is available yearly to assist local whānau, hapū, iwi, mātāwaka (Maori from outside the area) and Māori businesses in getting off the ground.....

Ngati Maniapoto contemplate court action
Calls have gone out for King Country Maori to have their say on a plan to take the government to the High Court but tribal heads are staying tight lipped.

Rongo Wetere, the former head and founder of Maori tertiary institution Te Wananga o Aotearoa, planned to take over the Ngati Maniapoto treaty claim and pursue a settlement in the courts estimated to be worth billions.

Last week, a leaked email from Wetere's son Willie Wetere said previous settlements, like the Waikato-Tainui and the Ngai Tahu settlements, were a fraction of the actual value lost to Maori.

"We believe that's unfair and given the Crown ignores Waitangi Tribunal recommendations, that the High Court is where we should commence settlement negotiations," the email said.

Maniapoto losses could dwarf them and their losses "will be in the tens of billions of dollars"

Connecting to the environment for better health outcomes
“Exploring Māori health from our own indigenous knowledge base, rather than as a reaction to prevailing Māori health crises is what we call a ‘kaupapa Māori approach’ for Māori health outcomes” says Leonie Matoe, Managing Director for Toi Tangata, an Auckland based Māori health provider providing advocacy and coordination for kaupapa Māori based approaches across the public health nutrition and physical activity sector....

Three Toi Tangata Innovation Awards worth $1,000 each will also be given to providers who demonstrate awesome nutrition and physical activities that enable whānau to flourish.

Toi Tangata will also be giving a Tauira Presentation Award worth $500 to a tertiary student who is conducting research or projects in nutrition and physical activity....

Lincoln steps up Maori support
Lincoln University has appointed a new Maori and Pacific support coordinator as it targets increasing numbers of Maori students.

Under its new Whenua strategy, Lincoln is offering its Diploma of Agriculture course within the Whenua Kura intitiative, a Ngai Tahu-led partnership which seeks to grow Maori leadership in agriculture.

It has also created a new position of Professor in Maori and Indigenous Development as it positions itself alongside the growing Maori economy...

Maori Responsiveness Manager Welcomed in Powhiri
The community of Counties Manukau today welcomed Inspector Nga-Wati Chaplow as Counties Manukau Police Maori Responsiveness Manager in a powhiri at Te Puea Marae, Mangere Bridge.

The newly created role is one of 12 throughout the country (one per Police District) and Inspector Chaplow will have responsibility for the Counties Manukau Police Maori, Pacific and Ethnic Services Group (MPES).....

Charter schools part of Maori development
She says Maori have seized on the charter school model as a way of addressing what they see as problems in the mainstream system.

" Our people have got to a point where they are tired of being dictated to in the education sector and they want to do it themselves. Some of them are ready to do it and some need to think long and hard about why they want to do it. But I think you are seeing it across the board in Maori development. We are ready to do these things ourselves and we are tired of being told how to be Maori and how to be Maori in the education sector " she says.

Hawke's Bay Regional Council work to build stronger tie's with local iwi.
A recommendation is being put to Wednesday’s Hawke’s Bay Regional Council meeting asking for a working group to be set up to help review how the Council is doing with its relationships with iwi and incorporating Tangata Whenua views into its work.

Members of the Council’s Maori & Regional Planning Committees are asking for the review to determine how HBRC can best incorporate Tangata Whenua values and support the Regional Planning Committee...

Te Matawai not rangatiratanga
Waihoroi Shortland from Ngati Hine says a national language hui last week head real concerns about former Maori affairs minister Pita Sharples’ plan for a new body, Te Matawai, to oversee the Maori language commission, Maori broadcast funding agency, Maori television and other language-related initiatives.

He says creating a new bureaucracy to oversee other bureaucracies doesn’t seem a wise use of resources.

Te Matawai needs to be seen as a government strategy, rather than the expression of rangatiratanga Dr Sharples claimed it would be.

" Is this thing called Matawai doing the job we might want it to do. If it is a job about championing Maori rights and we are putting Maori people into it, then it ought to be the tool that we use to bang the government over the head with. It shouldn't be the other way around, that it ends up being the tool the government uses through it's strategy, through it's laws to bang our heads " he says.....

Tangata Whenua views considered
A recommendation is being put to Wednesday’s Hawke’s Bay Regional Council meeting asking for a working group to be set up to help review how the Council is doing with its relationships with iwi and incorporating Tangata Whenua views into its work.

Members of the Council’s Maori & Regional Planning Committees are asking for the review to determine how HBRC can best incorporate Tangata Whenua values and support the Regional Planning Committee.

The Regional Planning Committee was established in April 2011 as Treaty of Waitangi redress for Tangata Whenua groups. It oversees the review and development of the regional planning documents for the Hawke’s Bay region as required by the Resource Management Act 1991. It comprises equal membership of Regional Councillors and Treaty Claimant Group representatives.....

Waka patu ahi on its way with lights flashing
Emergency services in Turanganui-a-Kiwa today unveiled the country's first bilingual emergency service vehicles.

Wayne Ngata from Te Taura Whiri i te Reo Maori says the aim is to increase the visibility of te reo Maori in streets and in communities.

He says Gisborne District Council, St John Ambulance Services and the New Zealand Fire Service are setting an example for other councils and government agencies to follow.

Dr Ngata says the area's waka turoro or ambulances and waka patu ahi or fire appliances serve a population where one in 10 are Mazori language speakers.

Te Taura Whiri believes bilingual signage is important as it acknowledges the status of te reo Maori as an official language of New Zealand.

As well as painting its waka turoro, St John Ambulance Services is keen to develop strategies for using te reo Maori through their organisation......

Support for Computers in Homes programme welcomed
The Māori Party is pleased to see the Government will continue to fund Computers in Homes this year which was initiated by the Māori Party in 2009.

The Government recently announced it will set aside $3.04 million in the coming financial year to support another 1500 low income families through the Computers in Homes programme.

“This programme creates multiple benefits for the whole whānau; you have whānau learning new skills together, becoming digitally literate and more connected to the world,” says Māori Party Co-leader Marama Fox....

'Make charter schools teach Te Reo'
A Te Reo campaigner says every new charter school should be forced to teach Māori language lessons.

Bay of Plenty broadcaster Pat Spellman is an ardent proponent of Te Reo and recently called for Tauranga to become a bilingual city.

The iwi radio presenter said it should be compulsory for all public schools students to learn the language.

And he said he would take that a step further by making a prerequisite for charter schools to include Te Reo Māori as a core subject.

Mr Spellman said if the language was in the education system, then New Zealand children would grow up and accept Te Reo and Te Ao Maori (the Maori world) as a way of life fro everyone, and not just Māori people......

Public poll confirmed on Maori electoral ward for New Plymouth
A poll will be held to determine whether a Maori electoral ward is established in New Plymouth District.

The binding poll has been confirmed following independent validation of a petition that was created after the Council’s September 2014 resolution to create a Maori ward.

Registered electors across the district will receive voting papers from 24 April, with the poll closing at midday on 15 May. The result will be announced later that day and will be binding for six years from the next local government elections in October 2016.....

Kāpiti steps up relations with mana whenua
The mayor of Kāpiti says his council intends to appoint an iwi commissioner by the middle of next year.

The commissioner will sit on the hearings panel for the local authority's proposed district plan, which included many issues related to the protection of the natural environment.

Mayor Ross Church said a tribal representative would play a crucial role.

He said the person would bring in a Maori perspective that was crucial to submissions surrounding natural vegetation and sustainability.......

Maunga authority tells bowlers to leave
The council has been only been willing to roll over the club's lease on a month-by-month basis since the end of 2013, until last month when the new Tupuna Maunga o Tamaki Makaurau Authority asked for the lease to be terminated.

The authority now co-governs Otahuhu along with 13 other maunga returned to local iwi and hapu through the Treaty of Waitangi settlements process......

Popular Auckland beach set to close for 'private family event'
A popular Auckland beach area is set to be closed for a "private family event" this weekend, raising questions about the rules and regulations surrounding public beaches.

Ngati Whatua Orakei has put a public notice in local newspaper East and Bays Courier saying Okahu Bay beach on Tamaki Drive will be closed to the public from 6am to 4pm this Saturday.

The notice says a "private family event" is taking place.

It is not yet known if the closure relates to the entire beach or the grass reserve separating the beach from the road.

The bay is usually packed on weekends during the summer months, while a grass reserve directly across the road is often used for community events and corporate promotions.....

RESEARCH – Geothermal Minerals Laws Clarified
His report looks at the issue from different aspects, including commercial, property rights and Treaty of Waitangi claims, which Professor Barton says are unlikely to have an adverse legal effect on geothermal mineral operations.

“One of the Interesting things about geothermal fluids is that there is already a high level of Māori involvement in successful commercial ventures,” Professor Barton says.....

'Wide support' for name change
Two Whanganui leaders say there is strong evidence from the community that more people are embracing the correct Maori spelling of the river city's name by adding an 'h'.

Wanganui District Council has received 1,939 public submissions on the spelling of the river city's name - but is not revealing what the public's preference is......

Treaty claim success through courts 'unlikely'
Using the courts to get Treaty money from the Crown has been attempted before and can help put claimants in a stronger position to negotiate at a political level, a law professor says.

The former head of Te Wananga o Aotearoa, Rongo Wetere, wants to become Ngati Maniapoto's lead negotiator and take its claim to the High Court.

While it would be an unusual move, Professor David Williams of the University of Auckland, said there was a precedent for using court litigation to leverage a better form of redress.....

Who owns Motukawaiti Island?
Who owns Motukawaiti Island? That's one of the big question the Te Tai Tokerau MP is asking the government after it was sold to an international investor over five years ago. To this day details of the sale are unclear.

“Ngāti Kura have waited five years with baited breath, so they may die before knowing the truth. I'm focussed on assisting Ngāti Kura in the return of the island,” says Davis.

“At this stage, I think the government needs to look seriously to return the island to us through our treaty claims,” says Samuels.

The hope is that we shall soon know who the legal owner of Motukawaiti is.

Kaumatua will keep pushing for Maori ward on New Plymouth council
A Te Atiawa kaumatua is determined to keep pushing for a Maori ward on the New Plymouth council, despite a pending referendum on the matter.

Last week, organiser Hugh Johnson delivered a petition to mayor Andrew Judd, signed by 4248 people who wanted to see last September's council vote in support of a Maori ward tested via referendum. Each signature on the petition needs to be checked and if everything is in order, a date will be set for the vote.

Legislation allows for a binding referendum on Maori wards if a petition with at least 5 per cent of the electorate is collected. But Grant Knuckey, of Puketapu hapu, said he, along with a group of others, were looking into options to make sure the Maori ward seat became a reality, including getting legal advice.

"We're not going to go away. We're sick of this. We've had 150 years of living in this country where our views are not taken into account," he said. ....

Māori protocol
The following sites will help you prepare for a visit to the marae, and to also understand Māori customs in general. SCIS no: 1700723

Weather in Te Reo sparks language debate
A social media conversation surrounding the use of Māori on TV and radio has snowballed and sparked a new language debate

Pat Spellman from Iwi radio said if he could make one change it would be to have a greater emphasis placed on Te Reo Māori in kura - compulsory language lessons in schools.....

Iwi questions FOMA on Maori land
“The Federation of Maori Authorities will only help little underperforming Maori land blocks if there is money in it for them."

This is the criticism from Willie Te Aho of the Iwi Leaders Group after announcements by the Minister of Maori Development yesterday appointing a new Ture Whenua Maori Ministerial Advisory Board to lead Maori land law reforms.

Traci Houpapa, the FOMA chair, is a member of the new board as are two other FOMA members on the seven-member board.

Mr Te Aho is concerned that FOMA has been given too much influence......

Forecast for redneck weather
Maori Party co-leader Marama Fox is supporting the efforts of TV3 weather presenter Kanoa Lloyd to add more reo Maori to her broadcasts.

Ms Lloyd revealed on Twitter that some viewers took offence at her use of kupu Maori or place names like Aotearoa or Te Waipounamu.

Ms Fox says making Maori language ordinary and every day seems to rub some people up the wrong way.

"It is the redneck portion of our society who have held on to 100 years of legislation that said Maori language was a waste of time and should not be taught in our schools. In fact when they debated it in the House of the day they said it was not conducive to human thought. Now that kind of thinking has been ingrained into the psyche of this country and it seems we have a hangover from that legislation which was only outlawed in 1969," she says....

Maunga authority needs time
The chair of Auckland Independent Maori Statutory Board says the body looking after the city’s volcanic cones needs to be given time to find its feet.

The Tupuna Maunga o Tamaki Makaurau Authority held public consultations yesterday on its draft operational plan, which sets out what it expects from Auckland Council in terms of management of the cones.

The authority is made up of mana whenua, council and local board representatives, and it has already raised comment with its intention to ban cars from the summit of Maungawhau-Mt Eden.....

3 News defends use of Te Reo
3 News is shrugging off criticism for its weather presenter's regular use of Te Reo Māori.

Kanoa Lloyd started working for the channel five months ago, and was surprised by the backlash to her using the language.

"It's been a new thing to me, people writing to me to request I don't refer to New Zealand as Aotearoa, and to be honest I was a bit surprised by it.

"I thought I had a bit of a thick skin but I've never really encountered people who take offence to Maori being used," she said.

Ms Lloyd has taken to Twitter to talk about the resistance to Te Reo, saying it was a weird part of her job to get weekly complaints about her using Māori words in the weather report.

She said there seemed to be a range of issues among some viewers....

Māori Economic Development Grants Fund
A total of $60,000 is available for projects that align to the Māori Economic Development Strategy.

The fund aims to assist whānau, hapū, iwi, mātāwaka and Māori business in Kāpiti with costs associated with the ongoing development of Māori economic activity, in particular activity associated with:

* Manaakitangata – leveraging the potential of rangatahi and building whānau capacity

* Kaitiakitanga – Whatungarongaro te tangata toi tu te whenua (working with the whenua)

* Kotahitanga - supporting whānau to achieve economic wellbeing through capacity, collaboration, innovation and Māori business.....

Tūhoe take trip to Wellington to strengthen relationship with Police
Tūhoe and the Police are strengthening their relationship with a face to face meeting in Wellington. The two groups have come together to assist some of the children affected by the 2007 Raids in Ruatoki.

It's all fun and games today for these Ruatoki youngsters. But seven years ago, the last time some of these children were up close and personal with Police, it wasn't like that at all.

Moko Hillman says, “It was difficult time for us all back then. But now we can come here and meet them, under a banner of goodwill to work better together."

Police commissioner, Mike Bush says, “It’s really important for Police staff to understand the impact of their actions. When we get it wrong we have to learn from it.”.....

Innovation Key to $3.1 Million Multi Project Funding
The South Island’s Whānau Ora commissioning body is about to announce $3.1 million in funding directed toward locally driven initiatives designed to support Maori innovation and achievement in the region.

Te Pūtahitanga o Te Waipounamu is excited about the high calibre of proposals that were put forward for funding and is currently working with 10 applicants through the final stages of the process.

Te Pūtahitanga Chair Norman Dewes says the current proposals are focused on a range of enterprises from assisting individuals with mental health difficulties to finding employment solutions, to programmes that help whanau in the earliest and later stages of life.

Mr Dewes says this new approach is innovative because it aims to create transformation for whanau.

“The issues for Maori have largely been around lack of opportunities because Maori have generally been locked into an environment that focusses on issues and needs.”

Te Pūtahitanga aims to transform this thinking by working with whanau, hapu, Iwi government and non-government sector to generate opportunities for Maori to reach their full potential......

Tourists to pay to visit Hamurana Springs
Tourists will now have to pay to visit Hamurana Springs, but its Ngāti Rangiwewehi owners say there will be no charge for the general public.

Thousands of people have visited this place over the years and now it has been given back to local Māori to manage.

Te Oha Hancock says, “This is no longer Pākehā land, it's ours. We need to look after it, just like the land and water looks after us.”

Last year, the Crown returned Hamurana Springs to Ngāti Rangiwewehi.

The site of an iwi stronghold, the historically significant site was managed by the Department of Conservation. But with its return, local Māori have decided to charge tour buses....

Marae and reo priorities in Auckland plan
Labour Maori MPs from the super city have been looking at the needs of Maori in the greater Auckland area.

Manurewa MP Lousia Wall, Tamaki Makaurau's Peeni Henare and Te Tai Tokerau representative Kelvin Davis met yesterday with the Auckland Maori Statutory Board.

Ms Wall says the the board has been talking to mana whenua and other groups about what they want to see in the Auckland Council's Ten Year Plan.

"The priorities they have highlighted are thigns we would support around marae development so ensuring that our cultural centres are adequately supported so that our whanau have places to congregate and obviously practice kapa haka and our culture," she says.

Also a priority was ensuring all young Maori in Tamaki Makaurau had opportunties to learn and engage in te reo Maori....

Ngāti Awa fight against Council plans to build near urupā
A battle is brewing in the Bay of Plenty between local iwi Ngāti Awa and the Whakatāne District Council over proposed developments to build a retirement village near the tribe's cultural significant cemetery, Ōpihi Whanaunga Kore.

Ōpihi Whanaunga Kore is a tranquil piece of land situated in the harbour of Whakatāne. It's the final resting place for local iwi of Ngāti Awa. But now it's become a subject of conflict due to the local council's plans to develop it.

Enid Ratahi-Pryor from Te Rūnanga o Ngāti Awa says, “This isn't the white community, this isn't the Whakatāne urupā, this isn't the Whakatāne District Council cemetery, this is a Māori urupā where we practise our traditions. We practise our beliefs in a very different way.”....

Iwi seeking ban on ash scattering in reserves
Local iwi want the Christchurch City Council to stop allowing people to scatter or bury human ashes in parks and reserves but councillors are hesitant to ban the practice.

The council has been in a quandary over the issue since Mahaanui Kurataiao Ltd (MKT), a company that acts on behalf of the six runanga within Christchurch, raised concerns in a submission on the draft 2014 Parks and Reserves bylaw.

The draft bylaw included a provision for ashes to be interred or scattered in parks and reserves on the condition that written approval was first obtained from the council.

MKT warned the council if it went down that path Ngai Tahu whanau would be alienated from those places as they would be bound by the same protocols that applied in designated cemeteries.....

Waitangi Tribunal hear claims made by tribes of Whangarei
Mana whenua are still not being consulted about major mining in their tribal homelands. This was the crux of presentations before the Waitangi Tribunal on the morning of day one of a hearing of the claims made by the tribes of Whangarei.

The effects of gold and silver mining on Ngāti Hau lands goes back to the late 1800s and hence it’s been a considerable wait for Ngāti Hau to have their views on the matter heard by a tribunal.

Te Raa Nehua from Ngāti Hau says, “Government say they're not required to consult with tangata whenua on the approval of mining licences and that's just so wrong. The signatures on Te Tiriti weren't even dry and they started doing wrong.”...

Maori Health Promotion Advisor (Auckland based)
The communities we serve are changing and our business strategy recognises the need for our organisation to continuously improve and remain relevant. An important part of our new operational model, the creation of two regional Health Promotion Advisor Maori positions will add a new dimension to how we deliver services to our Maori clients and whanau.

These positions are an exciting opportunity to provide support, resources and information to the Maori community, enabling communities and individuals to develop strategies to improve health in key areas. In this position, you will be responsible for planning, implementing, managing and evaluating health promotion programmes in accordance with the Treaty of Waitangi, Ottawa Charter and the Jakarta Declaration....

New Zealand Maori offered unique copyright for UN art works
A group of Maori craftspeople have gained a unique agreement from the United Nations to retain copyright of a major art installation at UN Headquarters in New York, Maori Development Minister Te Ururoa Flavell said Monday.

The group of 43 woven panels -- or tukutuku -- were installed on permanent display next to the entry of the General Assembly Hall last week, Flavell said in a statement.

"These tukutuku are a stunning representation of our culture and our country. More than 1 million people every year will get to see these taonga (treasures)," said Flavell.

"Appropriately, the legal agreement reached between the UN and New Zealand is a significant departure from usual UN policy and is in keeping with the spirit of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples," he said.

"This landmark agreement allows for the gifting of the panels to the UN, whilst also recognizing the intellectual property rights of the weavers, their families and communities."

Traditionally, once a gift was accepted, the UN normally retained all the intellectual property rights, he said.....

Iwi object to harvest of pine trees on Kaiti Hill
LOCAL iwi are objecting to Gisborne District Council’s plans to harvest trees on Titirangi because of the location of burial grounds and the threat of land slips on Kaiti Hill.

“The submission is primarily concerned with potential impact of the harvesting on wahi tapu sites and the species that will be used to replant and their potential survival.”

A joint submission from kaumatua of both Ngati Oneone and Te Aitanga a Mahaki said the discovery of a “significant” area of burial grounds in 1990 meant they opposed large-scale ground operations and suggested a helicopter harvest be included in the plan.

“The known wahi tapu is multiple — 23 urupa or burial grounds are known to exist on the maunga. It is accepted that we do not know the exact site of the 23 urupa, hence the accompanying boundary....

Tamaki Makaurau Bowlers Tops at Aotearoa National Maori Bowls Tournament
The Aotearoa National Maori Bowls Tournament was held in Gisborne over the Waitangi Day long weekend. Attracting teams from across the country, the games were played under sunny skies on excellent greens.

This continues to be the major event for Maori Bowls and will be held next year in Wellington, and then Auckland in 2017....

Hundreds have a say on 'h' in Whanganui
The Wanganui District Council says hundreds of people outside the rohe made submissions about their preference for the spelling of the district's name.

In December, councillors voted 10-4 in favour of applying to the Geographic Board for an official name change.

The board must consult with the public and the council also voted to run a public consultation process to ensure everyone has the opportunity to provide their views on whether Whanganui should be spelt with an 'H'.

Deputy mayor Hamish McDouall said because the Whanganui diaspora lived far and wide, it was decided to allow for online submissions which he said was very popular.

He said some councillors recognised that there are some Whanganui people who live away from the district who would not otherwise have a chance to have their say.

Mr McDouall said the council has received 1500 written submissions, plus "hundreds" of responses to the online survey.....

Treaty a two-way bridge to understanding
Te Tai Tokerau MP Kelvin Davis says John Key’s fearmongering about Andrew Little’s call for a discussion of Maori sovereignty is pandering to a fear of the unknown.

The prime minister described the as separatist the Labour leader’s comment at Waitangi that the future role of iwi needed to be reconsidered in light of a Waitangi Tribunal finding tribes did not give up the right to look after their own affairs when their rangatira signed the treaty.

Mr Davis says the role of parliament as the main law making body is not going to change, but there is room for a discussion around the edges.

He’s reminded of the past comments of Northland priest Charlie Shortland that the Treaty of Waitangi is like a bridge between the Maori bank of a river and the Pakeha bank.

It has always been Maori who have to cross the bridge.

"How often have Pakeha crossed the bridge in the other direction and come on to our side of the river and lived amongst us and learned our language.

Mountain no place for mountain biking
Off-road biking has been banned on Mt Victoria in Devonport.

Auckland Council's new Tupuna Maunga o Tamaki Makaurau Authority is charged with protecting the city's volcanic cones and took action after reports of damage to a cemetery.

Chairman Paul Majurey said signs have been placed on top of the popular sightseeing spot.

Mountain-biking must take place on paved roads, not through sacred places, Majurey said.

He said the activity has caused significant damage to Auckland's treasured mountains.

Mountain-biker Lyndsey Shanahan said it's "pretty sad" the ban has been put in place and claims riders cause no more damage than walkers.

"Why don't they ban everybody from using the tracks?" .......

Auckland Council eases port reclamation stance
Auckland Council has relaxed its stance on plans by its port company to reclaim part of the Waitemata Harbour.

However the detail of the vote taken behind closed doors last night remains confidential.

The port wants to reclaim a further 135 metres of Waitemata Harbour to give it longer berths and more handling space at the Bledisloe wharf.....

Prior to that debate, the port company surprised its council owner and local iwi by getting approval to extend two wharves 100 metres into the harbour.

Ports of Auckland will begin extending Bledisloe Wharf in April, with the city's mayor admitting he had no idea the controversial move was likely.

The two 30-metre wide wharf extensions are effectively the side boundaries of the area which the port hopes eventually to reclaim.

It does not yet have permission to reclaim, but confirmed it has resource consents to extend two wharves in the Bledisloe area.

Ngati Whatua's commercial arm says it is seeking legal advice over whether the consents are valid.....

The council also faces opposition to another contentious development.

The board representing Maori in Auckland is questioning the legality of the imminent sale by the council of a prime piece of downtown land.

The Independent Maori Statutory Board says Queen Elizabeth Square near the waterfront might not be the council's to sell.

The chair of the Maori board, David Taipari, has asked the council to detail the history of the reclaimed site, which was transferred to the council from the former harbour board.

"If this land was acquired from maori interests via the Public Works Act or other legislation, I challenge whether the council has the authority to sell this land, and should make sure it's offered back to its original owners," said Mr Taipari.....

Special plaques to mark Treaty signing
Education Minister Hekia Parata says all new schools and early childhood centres opening this year are being offered special plaques to acknowledge the 175th anniversary of the signing of the Treaty of Waitangi.

“The commemorative plaques are just one of several initiatives developed to help schools to mark a milestone in New Zealand's history.

“Many new schools are also taking up the Ministry's offer to provide bilingual signage in their schools, often developed in partnership with the local iwi."

Ms Parata says the Maori Histories Project underway in schools is also due for release later in the year. The project details best practice examples of teaching New Zealand history including the Treaty of Waitangi...

Iwi looks to advance Lakes plan
Te Arawa's proposal to set up an independent board on the council was made public late last year and it was decided the proposal would go out for full public consultation.

The council is to meet on Tuesday to discuss a draft "statement of proposal" and to decide on the consultation process and timeframe.

The proposal could see the establishment of an iwi board outside of the council structure to replace the former Te Arawa Standing Committee (TASC).

Te Arawa would appoint or elect a board of up to 14 people with two representatives - with voting rights - to sit on the council's Operations and Monitoring Committee and on its Strategy, Policy and Finance Committee, with one on the Chief Executive Performance Committee and another representative on Resource Management Act hearings panels.

Some councillors and members of the public have criticised it as "undemocratic".....

What's the plan for Te Reo?
Groups have queued up to highlight what they see as gaps in a proposed law to change the governance of Te Reo Maori.

There are plans to create an iwi-led body called Te Matawai to be put in charge on the development of the language.

MPs went on to press Professor Meyerhoff for her personal view on whether Te Reo should be compulsory in schools.

"I would have no problem with that. It seems to me that if it's an official language of the realm and this is the only place in the world where it is spoken, that it's not actually asking too much."....

Decision eases Maori land rates issue
The Maori Land Court has given the green light to an application to form an ahu whenua trust to govern a block of land near Kaitaia which could become a template for resolving Far North District Council problems with collecting rates on land in multiple Maori ownership.

The court heard council discussions with the owners had led to rates arrears of about $168,000 on 11 titles in the Okahu - which the owners call "Ngakahu" - block being remitted and rates owing being reduced from about $29,000 to under $8000 a year. ...

Petition to spark Maori ward referendum
New Plymouth is destined for a referendum over a controversial move to introduce a designated seat for Maori at next year's local body elections.

The city's former Greypower president, Hugh Johnson, today gave the mayor a petition with more than 4000 signatures calling for a poll on the Maori ward initiative.

He needed 2700 signatures, or 5 per cent of eligible voters, to spark a binding referendum.

Mayor Andrew Judd received the petition backed by about 50 supporters.

He said it was now up to the people of the wider district to have their say.....

Memo to Little: Iwi Already Pay No Tax
The Taxpayers' Union is querying Labour Party leader Andrew Little's comments at Waitangi that New Zealand should consider allowing Maori to make their own laws, including tax laws, in reference to rules applicable to Native American tribal lands. Jordan Williams, Executive Director of the Taxpayers' Union says:

"Like many New Zealanders, Mr Little may be surprised to learn that iwi do not currently pay income tax, even on profits of their commercial investments."

"New Zealand is quite unique in the Commonwealth in allowing a type of group defined by blood to qualify as 'charitable' and therefore not pay income or company tax." ....

Sovereignty expressed in settlements
Manurewa MP Louisa Wall says Labour leader Andrew Little's call for a discussion on Maori sovereigty shows why he is a leader for the future.

Prime Minister John Key has dismissed Mr Little's comments at Waitangi as advocating separatism.

Mr Little said for iwi to make their own laws would be problematic.

But there are some things iwi could do that are consistent with Waitangi Tribunal findings that Maori were guaranteed a level of self governance....

Summer work gets underway on Ohakune mountain road
“All contractors working on the OMR must adhere to DoC and iwi protocols regarding the movement of materials and the cleaning of machinery prior to work commencing,” he said.....

2015 NZ Maori Golf Scholarships
For the second year running NZ Maori Golf Association in partnership with NZ Golf Inc. are offering Rangatahi Golf Scholarships.

The partnership aims to work together for the collective good of the sport and to achieve a whole of golf approach. Together the parties will provide a scholarships for up and coming rangatahi who are in the early stages of developing their golfing talent.

The scholarships will be available for rangatahi aged 16 to 19 as at 1 January 2015....

New Plymouth mayor goes in to bat for Māori wards
Sparks of separatism have been raised over establishing Māori wards on councils, but New Plymouth’s mayor, Andrew Judd, says the division is happening at the Crown's end.

“I challenged the Crown on that because it's only the creation of a Māori ward that goes to a binding poll by the community, any other ward that we create doesn't.”

Mr Judd is expecting a petition in opposition to the Māori wards, forcing a poll binding on the community for the next six years. He says it’s a process that was put in place by the Crown.

“That is divisive, and two systems for the same terms ward within the council area - that has to change.”....

Spat over Maori sovereignty versus separatism
Greater sovereignty for Maori or a dangerous path towards separatism?

That is the latest political spat between the Prime Minister and the Labour leader, following comments made by Andrew Little at Waitangi.

At the end of last year the Waitangi Tribunal found Maori leaders did not cede sovereignty when they signed the Treaty of Waitangi.

The Tribunal said rangatira agreed to share power with the British Crown, but did not give up the right to make and enforce laws in their lands.

In response, Mr Key said that was a divisive way of looking at things.

"The Crown's view is that sovereignty was ceded in 1840 but ceded to a modern New Zealand that was built for all New Zealanders."

He said he would not support any form of self-rule for Maori.....

Iwi water policy pandering
The New Zealand Maori Council wants the wider public brought into the debate over water policy.

The council is critical of the secrecy which marks the interactions between the Government and the Iwi Leaders Group on the issue.

Co-chair Sir Taihakurei Durie says the allocation and use of water is something that affects all New Zealanders.

" What we see with the government is not a policy at all but rather a pandering to economic interests. No one would deny that economic interests are important, we all depend upon economic growth for our own survival. But it is a case of making sure the development is right " he says.

Sir Taihakurei says while the Government is keen to talk with the major tribes, the way it is going about it threatens to upset the historical balance between tribes that has been maintained since 1840.....

Iwi plan million-hectare forest planting
Proposal in exchange for Government’s championing of Maori interests in international climate change deal.

Iwi leaders have drawn up an ambitious proposal to plant a million hectares of forest in exchange for Government's agreement to step up efforts to combat climate change.

The draft proposal was included in a booklet obtained by the Herald, which shows what members of the Iwi Chairs Forum raised with Prime Minister John Key at Waitangi last weekend.

The booklet contains the reports of various working groups within the 65-person forum on issues ranging from education to freshwater rights and mining.

It refers to a major proposal for a Crown-iwi partnership on climate change.

The forum's climate change working group said iwi would commit to planting a million hectares of forest over 10 years on Maori-owned, marginal land in Northland, the Central North Island and East Cape, potentially creating up to 50,000 jobs.

In exchange, iwi leaders wanted the Government to champion the interests of Maori in any international deal made at climate change talks in Paris this year......

Little sovereignty call shows Labour courage
Tai Tokerau MP Kelvin Davis says Andrew Little’s support for a discussion on Maori sovereignty will be positive for the party and the country.

Mr Little has come under fire for his call for serious consideration of the implications of a Waitangi Tribunal finding that northern Maori did not sign away their sovereignty when they signed the treaty.

The Labour leader suggested that while the suggestion Maori should be able to make their own laws on matters affecting them it would be highly problematic, it should be looked at in the context of how post-settlement iwi manage their affairs....

Key: Little's Waitangi comments push 'separatism'
Prime Minister John Key says Andrew Little's comments at Waitangi on Maori sovereignty were advancing "separatism."

"I reckon he would be leading New Zealand completely down the wrong path," Mr Key said at his post cabinet press conference today.

Mr Little told reporters the Waitangi Tribunal finding that Nga Puhi did not cede sovereignty should not be dismissed and that models of indigenous self-governance and law-making around the world should be explored.

"In 1840 when we singed the treaty, it strikes me we signed it for modern New Zealand, and that was a New Zealand where we co-habitated and ran the country together. It wasn't about separatism. It was actually about community and Andrew Little is basically suggesting that we had down a path of separatism."

He said he could not see New Zealanders supporting that.

"I cant see how it would help what is a vibrant growing multi-cultural New Zealand to succeed."

Mr Key said statutory co-governance arrangements between the Crown and iwi - such as for the Waikato River and Te Urewera National Party - were quite different from what Mr Little was suggesting "which is the independent state of Northland or something else."....

Fund for iwi freshwater improvement projects opens
Applications for a new Government fund aimed at helping iwi to improve the quality of their local freshwater bodies are now open, Environment Minister Dr Nick Smith and Māori Development Minister Te Ururoa Flavell announced today.

“The Te Mana o te Wai Fund recognises the special relationship that iwi have with their local waterways. This contestable funding will help iwi to work together with the wider community to improve and restore the quality of freshwater in their regions,” Dr Smith says.

The Te Mana o te Wai Fund was announced as part of Budget 2014 in partnership with the Māori Party, and provides $5 million over two years. It will support restoration initiatives such as riparian planting, projects to reduce nitrate levels, and community-run water restoration efforts for local waterways.

Proposed projects for the fund are required to support partnership and collaboration, and grants will be for a minimum of $200,000 to help guarantee that the successful projects will produce significant outcomes.....

Key slammed for not consulting Maori on flag change
The push to change the flag could spark a Treaty claim with some Maori unhappy about a lack of consultation.

Ngapuhi elder Patu Hohepa says John Key's speech at Waitangi on Friday was the first engagement with Maori on the flag referendum.

Dr Hohepa warns concerns could be raised at the Waitangi Tribunal.

Patu Hohepa says many in Maoridom would like to see a return to the United Tribes flag which was New Zealand's first flag, in 1834.....

Nats' Waitangi promise: We'll talk to Maori about climate change
The Government has said it will work with Maori on the two big climate change/carbon pricing decisions it faces this year – the post-2020 emissions reduction target and the review of the Emissions Trading Scheme.

Last year, iwi leaders meeting at Waitangi told Prime Minister John Key that they would mount a $600 million Waitangi Tribunal claim if the Government didn’t take action to boost carbon prices to at least $15 a tonne....

Council holding crown to account
he New Zealand Maori Council says it will hold the Government to the undertakings it made to the Supreme Court over Maori water rights.

The Government used Waitangi commemorations to announce it would formalise its work with the Iwi Leaders Group on fresh water policy, including case studies, new local clean-up initiatives and policy improvements.

Environment Minister Nick Smith said the Government’s policy is that nobody owns the water, and the work programme is about developing a better way for iwi to be involved in freshwater planning, allocation, pollution control, storage, and clean-up.

Maori Council co-chair Maanu Paul says that’s not what the Crown told the Supreme Court when it was fighting the council-led challenge on water rights.....

Iwi wants more clout over fishing body
Ngati Kahungunu wants to assert greater influence over a pan-iwi-owned fisheries company.

More clout is being called for after the tribe revealed its shares in Aotearoa Fisheries were devalued by $6 million.

The cut was due to what Ngati Kahungunu described as 'spectacular non-performance' of the firm and its 50 percent-owned subsidiary, Sealord Group.

The iwi said in terms of share value, it was back to where it was five years ago......

Maori say sought on long term plan
Maori in Tamaki Makaurau are being asked for their input on Auckland’s Long Term Plan, the budget up to 2025.

Ackland Council’s Maori strategy manager, Johnnie Freeland, says for those who don’t want to put pen to paper there will be a series of ‘have your say’ events over the next two months.

He says as well as the 19 mana whenua iwi, the council wants to hear from Maori from all the other iwi who make the city the world’s largest Maori city.

Mr Freeland says the mayor has set three priorities.

"Maori signature events, and we had some over the weerkend wiith the celebrations of Waitangi Day; Marae development, so we have over 50 marae across Tamaki Makaurau so how do we address the needs of our marae in becoming key centres for our communities; and another topical area is around housing so how do we enable papakainga development across Tamaki Makaurau," he says.....

Explore Maori self-governance
The possibility of Maori having self-rule is an issue that should be explored, Labour leader Andrew Little says.

As about 400 people attended a dawn service on Friday for the 175th anniversary of the signing of the Treaty of Waitangi, Mr Little said Prime Minister John Key shouldn't dismiss the Waitangi Tribunal finding that Maori didn't cede sovereignty to the Crown.

"If there are commitments made, historical commitments about preserving a level of self-governance then lets explore that - see how that can happen," he told One News.

New Zealand could still remain one country.

"There are models around the world where indigenous peoples have a level of authority over some issues and some territories that they control," Mr Little said.

Maori Party co-leader Te Ururoa Flavell says a discussion about constitution is not about Maori taking over the country or having more rights.

"It is about the ability for iwi to have a say about their affairs," he told the broadcaster.

Mr Key says he doesn't think there is room for Maori to have self-rule or self-governance in some areas of the country.....

Deadline set for freshwater deal
Iwi leaders and the Government have agreed on a deadline to sort out Maori interests in freshwater by Waitangi Day 2016.

Later in the day, at the annual iwi leaders' forum, the Government and more than 40 iwi leaders announced they aimed to resolve Maori freshwater rights by 2016.

Freshwater Iwi Leaders Group head Ta Mark Solomon said it was an ambitious plan but he was adamant it would work.

Sir Mark said the forum would not negotiate water rights on behalf of iwi but would set a framework for dealing with the Government on the kaupapa.

Mr Key said the Government maintained its position that no one owned the water.

But he said Maori did have some genuine rights and interests in water - and they needed to be defined.....

PM putting self interest over sovereignty - Little
Labour Party leader Andrew Little says the Prime Minister is too worried about his own political career to allow an honest debate about Maori sovereignty.

At Waitangi yesterday Mr Key dismissed a Waitangi Tribunal claim that Maori leaders did not cede sovereignty when they signed the Treaty of Waitangi in 1840.

The tribunal, which released the finding in November as part of its inquiry into treaty claims in Northland said rangatira agreed to share power with the British Crown, but did not give up the right to make and enforce laws in their lands.

Mr Key said it was a divisive way of looking at things.

"The Crown's view is that sovereignty was ceded in 1840 but ceded to a modern New Zealand that was built for all New Zealanders."

He said he would not support any form of self-rule for Maori.

However, Mr Little said Mr Key was showing a lack of leadership in shutting down the debate.

He said it was natural for politicians to be worried about a potential backlash from voters, but the role of a leader was to face up to difficult issues......

Treaty perceptions subject of talk
People tend to view the Treaty of Waitangi as a legal document, but its original intent was political control and colonisation, senior lecturer Dr Lachy Paterson said in a talk in Dunedin yesterday.

Entitled ''Changing Perceptions of the Treaty, 1840-2040'', the talk was given at the Dunedin Public Art Gallery and was well attended.

Dr Paterson, of the University of Otago's Te Tumu School of Maori, Pacific and Indigenous Studies, said the interpretation of the Treaty was now filtered by legal arguments and processes, which created winners and losers, and rights and wrongs.

Originally, the document was about exerting political control over Maori, which became more explicit after the chaos and acrimony of the 1860s land wars.

He rejected the view the earlier intent of the Crown was anything other than domination and control, albeit with humanitarian intent from some who represented the Crown.

An important juncture was Chief Justice Sir James Prendergast declaring the Treaty a ''simple nullity'' in 1877 during a land case, setting the tone of the courts for many decades to come, he said.....

Northland elder says New Zealand should return to its original flag
However, Northland elder Patu Hohepa says the country already has an appropriate flag, the first flag of New Zealand.

The NZ flag was in full flight at the Waitangi grounds, but the Prime Minister says, "The changing of the flag is a really important symbol of a modern new New Zealand that reflects a country that is now multicultural off that bi-cultural foundation."

However, Māori history expert Patu Hohepa says two tribes signed the Treaty of Waitangi and they already had a flag, the NZ Declaration of Independence.

Mr Hohepa says, 'If the Prime Minister and those in parliament look closely at the history of that flag, they will see that is the flag for us, Māori and Pākehā.".....

Lack of Maori input ‘disappointing’
Tauranga City Council's Draft Public Arts Policy is already starting to rankle some locals in the first week of its public consultation.

Moana FM announcer Pat Spellman is “extremely disappointed” by the draft policy and is asking council: why it did not seek direct consultation with local iwi or the Tangata Whenua Collective?

The draft policy, which was put out for consultation on Monday, aims to encourage public art which enhances the environment plus contributes to the character and identity of Tauranga.

“It seems to me there is a blatant disregard for any real partnership with council in terms of Te Ao Maori (The Maori World),” says Pat.

“I'm not sure why there is this disregard and it's a question that could be applied to a many things this city council has done in the past and continues to do.....

Mayoral candidates value ties with iwi
The desire for a stronger relationship with Rangitaane was a common theme at the final mayoral candidates' debate before the votes are tallied.

Candidates were asked to set out how the Treaty of Waitangi would work at the council under their leadership.

Yesterday's event at The Globe Theatre formed part of Palmerston North's Waitangi Day events.

All candidates except Martin Egan attended.....
See what the candidates said here > http://www.stuff.co.nz/manawatu-standard/news/65899749/Mayoral-candidates-value-ties-with-iwi

Water rights dispute boils over at Waitangi
The Government is in a new fight with Maori over water. The country’s powerful tribal chiefs claim they are close to a deal with the Government that could see them make money off water.

John Key opened his Waitangi Day celebrations with a kiss for Titewhai Harawira and a peaceful walk onto Te Tii Marae.

But behind closed doors, political tension run high as there is another standoff between the Government and Maori over water.

The commercially savvy iwi leaders’ forum claims there should be a resolution that would give Maori some control over freshwater within a year.

“We believe we have rights and interests to water,” says Ngai Tahu leader Mark Solomon.

Mr Key says in terms of water “we’ve said no one owns it”.....

PM makes pitch to Maori on flag chance
The Prime Minister has made a belated pitch to Maori to support his flag referendum.

John Key first revealed plans to change the flag ahead of Waitangi Day last year, setting the wheels in motion for a two-step referendum.

Today he's urging Maori to get involved.

"If we choose a new flag, it will serve us in times of celebration and remembrance, like Waitangi Day," he said....

Unfinished business for Taranaki iwi
Some see a Treaty settlement as the end of a process.

For others its only just the beginning.

This year marks the 175th anniversary of the signing of the Treaty of Waitangi, and for some iwi in Taranaki settlement outcomes have provided an opportunity to start over.

Six iwi have settled with the Crown so far and Taranaki is expected to sign off its deal by the end of the year. Ngati Maru, the region's smallest iwi, hopes to seek mandate from its members to begin the negotiation process shortly after runanga elections are completed next week.

Ngati Maru's court appointed trustee Holden Hohaia said his iwi had not been disadvantaged by being last around the negotiating table.

"We should be at no rush of settling our claim at the risk of selling ourselves short," he said.....

Concerns Over Water and River Ownership
An outdoor recreation umbrella group is calling for government to take a strong stand against a Maori demand at Waitangi for ownership of water. Andi Cockroft, co-chairman of the Council of Outdoor Recreation Associations of NZ (CORANZ) said water was a public resource and not for ownership by any one ethnic group.

He viewed with alarm a Ngai Tahu statement that a major reason was for “economic development” by Maori business should ownership be granted.

“We live in an egalitarian society where no one group whether it be based on affluence or ethnic ancestry, shall have special privileges of ownership,” he said.

Mr Cockroft said he realised that governments had granted Maori business special privileges as regards sea fishing.....

Prospects appear even brighter for Maori economic renaissance
Three trail-blazing iwi now have assets valued at $2.7 billion but in the next few years, 30 to 40 will emerge with that financial firepower, one expert says.

Selwyn Hayes runs EY Tahi, a Maori-focused advisory service and he has big expectations for the Maori economy, now estimated to be worth about $40 billion. That could grow to more than $100 billion in the next few years, he estimates.......

Iwi kids' school progress shown
Education Minister Hekia Parata has released figures for the first time showing iwi by iwi how Maori children do in early childhood education, primary school and NCEA.

They were presented as an education achievement profile of each iwi, from early childhood to school leavers, not in a comparative sense. But with 37 iwi in the data, comparisons can be made...

Team denied entry into basketball tournament because coach isn't Maori
A basketball coach says it is unfair his team of girls were barred from this week's National Maori Basketball Tournament because he is not Maori.

Andrew McKay coached a Ngati Whakaue team which won the under-15 division at last year's tournament in Rotorua.

But his application in October to enter the same team in the under-17 grade for this week's competition, which starts today, was initially declined by the organisers because he was non-Maori....

Funding boost needed to keep reo growing
New Zealand First is backing a call by primary school teachers for proper funding to te reo Maori in schools.

Maori affairs spokesperson Pita Paraone says the curriculum clearly states all students have the option to acquire knowledge of te reo Maori me ona tikanga.

He says money that should have gone into the area has instead been diverted into National Standards....

Irrigation projects to benefit for Maori?
The Prime Minister says any Maori water rights would be focused on economic development and conservation rights.

John Key is travelling to Kerikeri to discuss the issue with the Iwi Leaders Forum.

The Forum wants that settled by Waitangi Day next year, but Mr Key says it's more likely to be a consultation document finalised in two years.

"A number of sort-of bottom lines if you like from our point of view, which is no one owns water, there wouldn't be a national settlement when it comes to water.

"We think there are some rights and interests, but we need to determine what those are catchment by catchment."

Meanwhile, a Waitangi leader has slammed the government’s closed-door discussions with one Maori group over water rights.

Maori irrigation projects could be in line for a hand-up under the government’s new considerations of water rights....

Teachers to be schooled in te reo
A mainstream Rotorua school is ensuring all its teachers can speak te reo Maori in an effort to better reflect its community.

Owhata School teachers will be taking te reo Maori classes this year as part of their development as educators.

According to its 2014 Education Review Office report, 90 per cent of Owhata School pupils identify as Maori, compared to eight per cent European and two per cent Cook Island Maori.

Principal Bob Stiles said all staff were on board with the initiative......

Iwi freshwater resolution by Waitangi 2016
Iwi and the Crown support the resolution of iwi and hapu rights and interests in freshwater by Waitangi 2016.

After many years of uncertainty and legal challenges in the Waitangi Tribunal and Supreme Court, iwi and the Crown have agreed on a work plan to address over allocation and iwi and hapu rights and interests in freshwater.

The work plan was agreed by Cabinet last Monday and approved by more than 40 iwi chairs in attendance at the Iwi Chairs Forum held in Kerikeri yesterday. The Iwi Chairs Forum will be outlining their support for the work plan to the Prime Minister and Cabinet Ministers this afternoon.

The Freshwater Iwi Leaders’ Group believes that with the right engagement the issue of iwi rights and interests in fresh water could be resolved by this time next year....

Council raising the flag for treaty
Dunedin Mayor Dave Cull sees no issues with flying the flag of Maori sovereignty from the council's Civic Centre to mark Waitangi Day tomorrow.

The flying of the flag will come as events are held around the South, including Ngai Tahu's Treaty Festival in Bluff, to mark 175 years since the signing of the Treaty of Waitangi.

Mr Cull said yesterday the Tino Rangatiratanga flag, which has caused controversy in the past when flown in other parts of New Zealand, had been flown from the Civic Centre dating back to before he was mayor.

He was not concerned other councils spoken to in the Otago region were not flying the flag.

''Somebody's got to be first,'' Mr Cull said.

The flag was flown after a request from sections of the local Maori community and was about recognising the two sides of the Treaty partnership.....

Apply now for Maori health scheme
Health Minister Jonathan Coleman says applications are now being taken for the Maori Health Development Scheme 2015/16.

Each year the scheme is allocated $8.89 million, which is spread over two programme areas – Maori health and disability provider development and Hauora Maori Scholarships.

Jonathan says: “This is an important scheme which works to increase the capacity and capability of Maori health and disability providers.”

Maori health and disability providers have used the funding to improve infrastructure, achieve service integration, improve the quality of services and develop workforce skills.....

Compulsory Te Reo 'a complete waste of valuable teaching time' - Brash
Dr Brash began by saying he agreed with some of Dr Morgan's ideas, like being opposed to separate Maori electorates and quotas for Maori in education.

But he called making Te Reo compulsory in schools "a complete waste of valuable teaching time" given so many can't read and write English well enough. He suggested it would be more useful to learn Mandarin or Spanish.

Dr Brash says in principle no one can object to the Crown compensating people for past wrongs. "I like the Treaty" he said, which he believes is very simple.

But he says it doesn't guarantee Te Reo in schools, or give Maori a veto over Resource Management Act decisions or prudential rights over natural resources......

New charter kura 'one-stop-shop for whanau'
The Manukau Urban Maori Authority says students at its newly-opened school will benefit from being on a marae, with access to Whanau Ora, kaumatua services and Te Reo Maori lessons.

Te Kura Maori o Waatea welcomed it first batch of akonga (students) to the bilingual school in Mangere on Monday.

Authority chief executive Willie Jackson said Nga Whare Waatea Marae was a one-stop-shop for the whanau of pupils.....

Maori money vital for Northland economy
The government says a strong Maori contribution is required for the economic development potential of Northland to be realised.

Taking advantage of the number of politicians and iwi leaders in north for Waitangi event, Economic Development Minister Steven Joyce and Primary Industries Minister Nathan Guy yesterday released the Northland Regional Growth Study.

It shows the Northland region has significant untapped economic potential and its industries could grow substantially thanks to its resource-based advantages.....

Govt cowardice over water rights
And when the discussion goes there government officials and Ministers immediately remind us that since water is a natural resource, creating mechanisms that produce a price for water is likely to trigger a treaty claim because under Article 2 tangata whenua have an interest in freshwater resources.

It is my opinion, that it is actually the treaty claim that is deterring government from introducing adequate environmental protection mechanisms for freshwater, rather than government primarily just not being interested in environmental values or being sceptical of the ability of pricing mechanisms to allocate the rights to pollute.....

Lack of Maori Law Society consultation on judges
The Māori Law Society says it is only consulted on an ad hoc basis when it comes to providing suitable tāngata whenua as candidates to be judges.

Te Hunga Rōia Māori o Aotearoa (the Māori Law Society) co-president Rachel Mullins said there was an evolving body of what is referred to as 'Māori law' in relation to Treaty Settlements and environmental issues.

"That requires a deeper understanding of the Māori dimension and a sound grasp of tikanga and Te Reo and Māori judges that bring those skills to the bench are invaluable.....

Hauraki iwi makes Kawau Island treaty claim
An historic reserve in Sunny Bay, on Kawau Island, is one of three areas in Mahurangi which may transfer to an Hauraki iwi under their Waitangi Treaty settlement.

The Office of Treaty Settlements has confirmed that the Crown and Marutuahu have signed an agreement that includes the three sites as part of cultural redress. The other sites are an area of the Motuora Recreation Reserve and the Mahurangi Scenic Reserve.

Long-time island resident Ray Weaver said he would be surprised if Marutuahu was successful in their claim.

“They aren’t the first iwi to make a claim,” he said. “Ngati Manuhiri, who settled their claim a few years ago, tried but the Tribunal did not recognise their claim. The fact that the island was privately sold by Ngati Manuhiri to James Forbes Beattie, in January 1840 – just weeks prior to the signing of the Treaty of Waitangi – is significant. It remained in one title until Andrew Joseph Farmer bought it in 1904 and began subdividing.

“If my memory serves me right, Ngati Manuhiri challenged the Tribunal’s decision in the courts and lost.”

Mr Weaver said however, the difference between the two claims could be that the Crown opposed the Ngati Manuhiri claim but it appeared it was supporting the Marutuahu claim. He said if the claim was successful, he would be concerned for other public land on the island.....

Governor General encouraged to be a strong representative for Māori
The Governor General, Sir Jerry Mateparae has been urged to support and acknowledge that Māori never ceded sovereignty when signing the Treaty of Waitangi.

Kaumatua of Te Tii Marae, Kingi Taurua spoke to the Governor General this morning in the whare saying Sir Jerry Mateparae held a very important role for Māori and urged him to remain a strong representative and be a 'father' for his people in his role.....

Iwi lobby for state houses ahead of sale
Leading Maori tribes are lobbying to get first bidding rights for state houses when they start going up for sale this year.

Iwi chairs attending their annual pre-Waitangi forum at Kerikeri will discuss the issue today and put their case to Prime Minister John Key and Housing Minister Nick Smith when they attend the forum tomorrow.

Sonny Tau, who chairs the country's biggest iwi, Ngapuhi, said he was seeking a formal right of first refusal for about 1200 state houses from Whangarei to Mahurangi north of Auckland as part of the iwi's negotiations for a Treaty of Waitangi settlement.

Two other big iwi, Tainui and Ngai Tahu, won first rights of refusal for state housing in the 1990s and Tainui leader Tukoroirangi Morgan has said his tribe wants to exercise that right to buy state houses in South Auckland and the Waikato.

Other groups, such as the Far North iwi Te Rarawa, do not have formal first refusal rights but said they expected the Crown to talk to them first.......

Warning on quake-prone marae
Maori are being told they need to wake up to the issue of earthquake-prone marae.

Dr Regan Potangaroa, associate professor of architecture at Unitec Institute of Technology, has described the situation as a 'big runaway train hurtling towards them'.

He said incoming government laws to make buildings more robust would hurt Maori economically and strike at their cultural heart.....

Iwi wants social housing clarity
One of Aotearoa's largest tribes wants more clarity from the Government so it can move forward with a project to buy state houses in its region.

Te Runanganui o Ngati Porou has been in talks with the Government to buy the 600 state houses in its tribal region.

Chief executive Teepa Wawatai said the government wanted to create more opportunities for iwi to take up social housing responsibility.

However he said the intentions for the transfer of state houses has not yet been made clear and there also needed to be greater clarity about the policy for housing in areas other than Auckland.....

Council told to honour Maori identity
The Tauranga City Council is not working hard enough to promote the area's Maori identity, a local campaigner says.

Pat Spellman, who wants both Te Reo and English signage in Tauranga, said the council was not showing any genuine commitment.

He said the council needed to start incorporating Maori culture into the city's identity.....

Gareth Morgan targets 'Brash-think' in Orewa speech
Gareth Morgan is heading to Orewa to confront what he calls the "ignorance of Brash-think".

He says there was a hotbed of ignorance which needed to be confronted because of the need for an ongoing relationship with Maori after all Treaty of Waitangi settlements are finished.

Dr Brash, meanwhile, stands by the speech, which targeted what he called the Treaty "grievance industry" and rejected Dr Morgan's interpretation.

He said the Treaty was a "crucially important document" at the time it was signed but it contained no suggestion of an ongoing partnership.

The final settlements needed to be finished and the original agreements rebalanced to meet current levels, Dr Brash said, but then "that should be the end of the matter".

"There is no suggestion in the document as an ordinary person reads it that this is an ongoing 'partnership'......

Maori flag for Rotorua Civic Centre on Waitangi Day
Rotorua Lakes Council (RLC) will again fly both the New Zealand flag and the Flag of the United Tribes of New Zealand at the council Civic Centre on Waitangi Day this week.

A decision on a flag for use on Waitangi Day in Rotorua in future years has been left with Te Pukenga Koeke o Te Arawa, the group of Te Arawa kaumatua which advises the council on cultural matters.

Council Strategy and Partnerships group manager, Jean-Paul Gaston, said the choice of a permanent Te Arawa flag to acknowledge the partnership with local Maori was a decision for Te Arawa....

Paul Moon: A post-Treaty era likely to bear lasting fruits
But just before the Treaty-haters begin to celebrate, the post-Treaty era may also usher in more assertive forms of Maori sovereignty. Some of the groundwork for this has already been laid, and co-management of Crown assets by hapu and iwi, coupled with these groups exercising greater autonomy in the areas of health, justice, and education are the likely fruits of this development.....

Maori claims in Bay 'echo of apartheid'
An outspoken scientist has likened Hawke's Bay foreshore and seabed claims to "an echo of apartheid South Africa" in front of a Napier audience.

Council of Outdoor Recreation of New Zealand secretary Hugh Barr last night spoke to about 100 people at the Napier Sailing Club in Ahuriri, saying at the public meeting that marine and coastal area claims in the Bay were a threat to public access.

Three claims were "currently in secret negotiation with [Attorney-General of New Zealand] Chris Finlayson" for areas of Bay coastline, Dr Barr said.

The Marine and Coastal Area Act had allowed for 40 claims for privatisation of areas of foreshore and seabed for tribal interests throughout New Zealand.

He said the claims would create "two classes of citizens, the privileged coastal chiefs and the rest of us, including people of Maori descent who don't belong to that tribe - second-class citizens".

"This is an echo of apartheid South Africa."

Water fresh issue for Waitangi debate
Maori rights to fresh water is firmly on the agenda this week at Waitangi for both the New Zealand Maori Council and the Iwi Leaders Group.

The council will hold an open forum at Te Tii Marae on Thursday to discuss its water policy proposal, Maori representation, Maori wardens and te reo Maori policy.

Co-chair Maanu Paul says the council wants to report back to te iwi Maori about what it has achieved over the past year and what is coming in the year ahead.

Up the road in Kerikeri, iwi leaders will talk among themselves about their attempts to influence the government’s freshwater allocation policy.....

'Leave our lands and seas alone'
Protests against Statoil's seismic oil exploration off western Northland and the "dubious" way the government had "bulldozed" the granting of deep sea oil exploration permits continue this week with a hikoi to Waitangi, timed to coincide with the arrival of government politicians there on Thursday.....

Māori Party wants benefit rates increase
The Māori Party are pushing for an increase in benefit rates, particularly for the most vulnerable such as parents with children.

Marama Fox says the Government is slow when it comes to increasing the benefit. According to statistics from 2009-2014, a couple with children had their benefit increase by $31 per week.

For a sole parent with children, a $26 increase.

However, if you look at superannuation, a single pensioner received a rise of $56 per week...

Maori immersion classroom opens
The hopes of a Whangarei school have been fulfilled with the opening of a new full Maori immersion classroom.

Yesterday morning a powhiri was held at Hikurangi School to welcome everyone back, but the first day was particularly special as it also marked the opening of their new classroom - Nga Whetu ko Hikohiko o Hikurangi - The Shining Stars of Hikurangi, a total Maori immersion classroom.

Principal Bruce Crawford said the opening of the class was a long time coming.

"I've always wanted it because I think te reo should be as common as English," he said. "We have 200 students at our school and a 63 per cent Maori roll.".....

Maori school now set to cater for year 9 students
South Taranaki school is opening a new chapter as it admits its first set of high school students this week.

Hawera's Te Kura Kaupapa Maori o Ngati Ruanui held a powhiri yesterday to welcome six year 9 students.

Previously a year 1 to 8 school, the Ministry of Education has granted it the ability to educate secondary school classes from year 9 to 13. ....

Thanks ma'am but time's up
He says the next step happens when Governor General Sir Gerry Mataparae attends Wednesday's treaty signing commemoration at Mangungu on the Hokianga Harbour.

"There will be a letter given to the Governor General to take to the Queen to thank her and the royal family from the time of Victoria for being our protector, leading us from a state of infancy to adulthood, we are now adults and could she now please tell the government and the rest of the world we are now ready to take over for ourselves," he says.

Patu Hohepa says the message to other iwi and the rest of New Zealand coming from the hui is that Te Tiriti describes an ongoing relationship that will not disappear when historical treaty claims are settled......

Petition with 4000 names slams Maori ward bid
A petition against Maori wards with more than 4000 signatures will be delivered to mayor Andrew Judd in two weeks and set in motion a referendum on the issue.

In September the New Plymouth District Council voted in favour of developing a ward to ensure Maori had a voice on the council.

The decision was condemned by many and prompted Hugh Johnson to start a petition against the move.

Current legislation allows for a binding referendum on Maori wards if a petition with at least 5 per cent of the electorate is collected.

However, that is not the case with decisions on other wards where the local government commissioner has the final say.

Five per cent of the New Plymouth electorate equates to 2749 signatures, and Johnson said he would be handing in "4000 plus" signatures to Judd on February 12......

Water rights, Te Reo Maori strategy and Maori representation
Water rights, Te Reo Maori strategy and Maori representation being discussed at Waitangi on 5 February

“New Zealand Maori Council will be discussing our key policy initiatives in an open forum at Waitangi on Thursday 5 February.” says NZMC Co-Chair Maanu Paul. “This is part of our reporting back to te iwi Maori on what Council has achieved in the past year and where we believe we will be heading in the coming year.” says Mr Paul.

“Council has arranged panel discussions on Maori representation, Maori Wardens, our Water policy proposal and our Te Reo Maori policy and are looking forward to sharing our discussions with others at Te Tii on 5 February.” says Maanu Paul. “Council will also be participating in the Taurangatira Tent discussions at Te Tii Marae”. Council policies on water, representation, Te Reo Maori, Maori Wardens and other matters can be found on www.maoricouncil.com .......

Few Maori judges in NZ's legal system
There are only 28 judges who define themselves as Māori working in New Zealand's legal system.

Te Manu Korihi has obtained the information from the Ministry of Justice and the Crown Law office, under an Official Information Act request.

Statistics New Zealand figures show Māori are over-represented in the number of people going through the court system, including Māori aged 10 to 16 still accounting for more than half of young people charged....

University of Waikato Conference - Maori Engagement in NZ's Extractive Industry: Innovative Legal Solutions
The aim of this symposium is to explore how recent developments in international law and State/Extractive Industry practice may improve Māori engagement with the Extractive Industry through: robust consultation and impact assessment processes; benefit sharing agreements with Extractive Industry; partnership agreements with Extractive Industry; and iwi-led projects.

The symposium will bring together experts in international law and indigenous rights, and domestic legal issues, and representatives of the Extractive Industry as well as a broad cross-section of Māori communities who have experience with Extractive Industry. ....

Pressure group mounts: 3 councillors on board
Three current and four former Rotorua district councillors have joined the new Rotorua Pro-Democracy Society with more than 50 people attending its inaugural meeting.

The meeting on Thursday was invitation only and was used to set the group up as an incorporated society.

Founding members Mike McVicker and Reynold Macpherson told the Rotorua Daily Post they were now in a position to raise funds and attract new members to the cause.

They said the society was set up to challenge a proposal to have unelected iwi members sit, and have voting rights, on Rotorua Lakes Council committees.

They say that proposal is "totally undemocratic".

"Now we can get serious about attracting more members and with at least 100 expressions of interest we don't think this will be too difficult," Mr Macpherson said.

"We're off to a flying start."

Mr McVicker said the society had attracted a diverse range of Rotorua residents.

"We are not just targeting Europeans, but everyone who is interested in defending our democratic rights," he said......

Waitangi Day disturbances expected after appointment
Even before Waitangi Day commemorations start a judge has signalled trouble ahead after he approved the appointment of one of the country's most disruptive women and her partner.

Despite baring her buttocks at elders at Te Tii Waitangi Marae and unproven claims of drug use, Hinewhare Harawira and Waireti Paora, have won places on its trust.

Rejecting a bid to stop them, Maori Land Court Judge David Ambler warned of deep antipathy on the marae.

Harawira, sister of defeated MP Hone Harawira, is mother of three men sent to prison two years ago for assaulting a 12-year-old. She is the daughter of activist Titewhai.

The plight of the nation's founding marae and its guardian Ngati Rahiri iwi is revealed in a tortuous 36-page judgment....

Maori doctor backs call for stomach stapling
A Maori doctor is backing a demand for more stomach stapling operations, after a New Zealand weight loss surgeon called on more government money to combat the problem.

The latest Ministry of Health figures show that one in five Maori children and almost half of Maori adults are classed as obese - disproportionately higher than other parts of the population.

George Laking of Te Whakatohea said demand exceeded availability and more funding was needed......

PM urged to apologise to Ngāpuhi and ensure new flag has Māori influence
The MP for Te Tai Tokerau, Kelvin Davis, says John Key needs to apologise to Ngāpuhi when he attends Waitangi next week over his criticism of the Waitangi Tribunal report, which claims that Ngāpuhi did not cede sovereignty by signing the Treaty of Waitangi.

Last year, Key dismissed the idea that a new flag should have Māori input. He's sticking to his guns.

He says, "In the end there will be a range of views put forward. New Zealanders will get to choose the alternative they want.”

Davis says, “If there aren't any Māori elements in the flag, then it is hardly a fair representation of this country holistically. It's merely representative of a small portion of the population.”..........

Settlements 'go some way to righting wrongs
An expert on the Treaty of Waitangi says Maori culture was ignored in the past, but the historical settlements have gone some way towards righting the disastrous effects of New Zealand's history.

Head of Research at Te Papa Tongarewa Dame Claudia Orange believes building Maori community strength through the process helped mitigate the effects of tangata whenua alienation from their lands.

Dame Claudia said 2015 was a significant year because it had been 20 years since the Treaty settlement process was established, but there was still work to be done.

She said legislation in the past destroyed any acknowledgement of Maori in relation to their land, having authority over it and the rights to develop their own ways of doing things....

Maori Party says iwi should have right of refusal
The Maori Party wants iwi to get the first right of refusal for all state houses the Government plans to sell.

"If the Government are going to go ahead and do that then we think iwi should have first right of refusal, many iwi have already settled if those houses and the land they are on had been included in a redress package Maori could have been moving in this space already.

Trust deputy chair Ngarimu Blair said it wanted to expand the sub-tribe's role in housing and said the call for first right of refusal for the sale of state homes, would have been perfect.....

Fund Maori language teaching - NZ First
The Government is failing New Zealand children by not supporting the teaching of Māori in schools.

"The 2009 New Zealand Curriculum states clearly: ‘All students have the option to acquire knowledge of te reo Maori me ona tikanga,’" says New Zealand First Spokesperson for Māori Affairs Pita Paraone.

"This is not an argument about making te reo compulsory in schools. This is about saying we want the learning of te reo to be funded as per the curriculum.

"This is not, as the Minister would have us believe, going to lead to the oppression of the language, but actively promote greater understanding of both the Māori language and the Māori culture, and deliver the rounded education we expect from New Zealand schools," says Mr Paraone......

Sovereignty hui underway in Northland
Nearly 200 people have gathered at Northland's Otiria marae for a two-day seminar and debate on Maori sovereignty.

Speakers include historian Paul Moon, and economist and philanthropist Gareth Morgan.

Mr Morgan is urging Pakeha New Zealanders to address the recent findings of the Waitangi Tribunal, that Maori did not cede sovereignty when they signed the Treaty of Waitangi.

The Ngati Hine organisers of the hui said the Crown had implied the Tribunal's findings were not relevant to the present day governance.

But they said the country would not move forward until the real implications of Te Tiriti, and the earlier New Zealand Declaration of Independence by Ngapuhi chiefs, were acknowledged and acted on......

Non-Maori urged to connect with Maori
There are too many schisms between Māori and non-Māori according to a Presbyterian Church leader, who's urging non-Māori to work harder to form positive relationships with tāngata whenua.

Reverend Norton said everyone had a responsibility to address the injustices done to Māori.

"The Treaty needs to become a living document for all New Zealanders and that is where we see the Treaty as a gift to the nation whereby it can help us live together in a relationship of manaakitanga... those are the things we need to live out the spirit of The Treaty," he said.

He believed too many blocks had been put up between Māori and non-Māori......

Iwi plans major Waitangi Day to celebrate 175 Years
Celebrate the 175th anniversary of Waitangi Day with Ngāti Kahungunu at the Hawke’s Bay Sports Park.
"We invite the whole community to come along and join us" said iwi chairman Ngāhiwi Tomoana. "The day is about family, community and nationhood".

To celebrate 175 years of partnership, six community and industry leaders will take one minute each to share one big idea they will take into their work place to mark the occasion......

Academic says rates for multiple landowners unfair
An academic says multiple owners of unproductive Māori land should not have to pay their rates while wealthy non-Māori are given rates holidays by councils.

Margaret Mutu, who is a Māori studies professor at the University of Auckland, believes tāngata whenua are justified in not paying their rates when such a double-standard exists.

However Northland Regional Councillor and chair of the Te Tai Tokerau Maori advisory committee, Dover Samuels, dismissed her criticisms.

"I'm not surprised at that response from an academic who has very little practical knowledge about local government. She lives in an ivory tower and doesn't understand what local authorities are trying to do hand-in-hand with Māori multiple landowners and bringing it into production.

"Councils have a policy of deferring rates and setting them aside, but it makes no difference what race the person is and rates are deferred for those who really need it."..

Housing a liabilty for iwi
New Zealand First leader Winston Peters says iwi should be wary of any attempt to push them into becoming social housing providers.

Prime Minister John Key yesterday unveiled his plans to create non-state providers of social housing by selling state houses cheap to agencies like the Salvation Army.

This would be backed up by extending rental subsidies now only available to state house tenants.

Mr Peters says it can be difficult to be a landlord to your own people, especially in times of high unemployment....

Ngati Whatua keen to expand housing
Auckland hapu Ngati Whatua o Orakei has welcomed the Government’s plans for state housing and want to be part of the action.

Prime Minister John Key has announced state houses will be sold to community providers, whose will also be able to qualify for income-related rental subsidies

Mr Davis says the hapu wants to broaden its sights and understand how best to provide affordable housing options for its people, and for the wider community....

Housing WOF could be price of support
The Maori Party wants a warrant of fitness for social housing to be part of the overhaul of social housing policy.

But she says a Maori Party-driven pilot last year found 90 percent of Housing New Zealand homes would fail a warrant of fitness.

She says the houses should be brought up to that standard before they are sold, and that standard maintained.

"By way of retaining accountability with the government to provide social housing of a good standard and a good quality for the most vulnerable families in our community, most of which will be Maori and Pasifika whanau, then we think a warrant of fitness on all social housing should be a minimum requirement, mandatory for all social housing at least. We think it also should be mandatory for all rental properties," Ms Fox says....

Treaty pundits put on the spot
They’ve put their views on the Treaty of Waitangi out in the public, and now the people who see themselves as guardians of the treaty have asked them to come and defend those views.

Te Kotahitanga o nga Hapu o Ngapuhi is holding a hui at Otiria Marae in Moerewa this Friday and Saturday at which authors Gareth Morgan and Paul Moon will speak, along with Annette Sykes, Valmai Toki, Moana Jackson and Tukoroirangi Morgan.

Co-chair Pita Tipene says the debate about what Te Tiriti o Waitangi means in 2015 and beyond is a response to the Waitangi Tribunal’s finding that the treaty was about Maori sharing power and authority with the crown rather than ceding sovereignty.

He says Treaty Negotiations Minister Chris Finlayson’s off-handed dismissal of the finding as having no effect won’t shut off the debate.....

Call for coastal claimants to get a hustle on
Almost 40 applications have been made to the Crown and High Court under the Marine and Coastal Area Act 2011 (MACA Act).

However, not all applications have been recognised, and there are also concerns over the costs to applicants and the threshold they must meet.

A total of 38 applications have been made under the MACA Act. 12 with the High Court, 26 with the Crown.

It's expected that a claim over the Titi Islands, near Rakiura, will be the first to be tested in the High Court at the end of this year.

Mahuta and Flavell have concerns over the costs which may be incurred by the applicants.

Mahuta says, “If the courts find there is legitimate reason for these applications to be taken, then perhaps the Crown should look at covering some of the costs incurred by applicants who go directly to the High Court.”

The Crown says it's currently in discussions with three groups and in the second half of the year, it expects the collection of evidence to start.

However, of the 26 applications, 10 have been dismissed. Nanaia Mahuta says perhaps that confirms the fear that the threshold is too high.

In April next year, the period for applications to be received will close.

Oral history to be used as evidence
A group of landowners against a wastewater plant planned for their land hope their oral history can be used as evidence in an appeal to stop the plant.

Some of their evidence would come from oral history which she said proved the land was to be used for a whanau homestead.

Ten new coastal rights for tribes
A comment by a Mahia bach owner that tribes that win customary marine title over an area of foreshore and seabed get significant rights prompted a closer look at the Marine and Coastal Area Act. John McLean, who chaired a meeting of 120 bach owners and claimants at Mahia on January 2 found 10 rights that lucky claimant tribes can benefit from that everyone else does not have.

A further a public meeting with take place at the Napier Sailing Club at 7pm on Monday, February 2, where Dr Hugh Barr, of the Council of Outdoor Recreation Associations of New Zealand, will explain how the Act has opened up the entire coastal area to claim by tribal groups.

Those special new rights are:...

Fears Mass in Te Reo Maori may die out
Christchurch Bishop Barry Jones is concerned that the celebration of Mass in Te Reo Maori is slowly dying.

“We have a shortage of priests who can celebrate the Mass in Maori. From the very beginning, the Catholic Church here in New Zealand has had a Maori dimension. And we must not lose it,”

......at the very least, learn the sign of the cross, the greeting and the dismissal in Maori.....

Crown turns down 10 foreshore applicants
Ten applicants have fallen at the first hurdle in their attempts to gain customary marine title to stretches of coastline.

The Crown has turned down their bids for rights to be recognised.

Under the Marine and Coastal Area Act, whanau, hapu and iwi can seek recognition and protection of long-standing customary interests.

On behalf of his family, Greg McDonald made an application for title to half a kilometre of foreshore and seabed in front of Pakiri Beach, north east of Auckland.

But his request did not make the cut....

Auckland Council asks iwi for input
Auckland's Mayor Len Brown says the council has asked iwi around the region to provide a list of what is critical to sustain the survival of their marae.....

Debate continues on te reo Māori being compulsory in schools
The debate around whether the Māori language should be compulsory in schools across the country has reignited.

Pākehā businessman Gareth Morgan, is the latest to back the idea in his new book about the Treaty of Waitangi, while the NZEI is calling for greater support from the government.

Pita Paraone has laid down a challenge to ministers Hekia Parata and Te Ururoa Flavell.

The New Zealand First MP and former Chief Executive of the Māori Language Commission says having the Māori language compulsory in schools is in their hands.

“The nation feared the Māori flag on top of the Auckland harbour bridge firstly and secondly on top of government buildings. At this stage, it's not an important issue,” says Flavell.

“If they want the world to change, the language to be taken up, it needs to start at primary and intermediate,” says Paraone,

Arawa leader eyes economic power
A Te Arawa leader says the iwi needs to be thinking abut how it can use all its wealth to better its people, rather than just treaty settlement assets.

Sir Toby Curtis chairs the Te Arawa Lakes Trust, which incorporates the former Te Arawa Maori Trust Board.

Last year it made a profit of almost $400,000 after its farms were converted to dairy production, and its total assets rose from $27.7 to $28.2 million.

He says a Te Puni Kokiri study estimated the current tribal asset base as worth between $6 and $8 billion, out of a total of Maori assets of around $40 billion.

"Already we are making a significant impact as a people. We need to continue that. (The Maori economy) is something in the region of $40 billion. We need to get that up to $100b, and we can. If we have that then money does not become a problem to us. Money becomes our servant to work for our betterment," Sir Toby says....

Local added to Maori advisory board
The appointment of Dannevirke's James Kendrick to the board of the St John Maori advisory group is awesome, the organisation's HR manager Tom Dodd of Auckland says.

Mr Kendrick is one of seven voluntary and paid St John staff from around New Zealand appointed to the group who will give advice on initiatives to improve Maori health outcomes, training and education for St John staff and the integration of tikanga Maori throughout St John, Mr Dodd told the Dannevirke News.

Mr Dodd said it's hoped the new advisory group will bring simple and practical ideas to Maori communities, with some initiatives being localised as the organisation realises one size doesn't fit all.

"All those on the group bring a huge background of wealth of knowledge to their roles and we looked for people who understood Maori health issues and protocols," he said.

Among the Maori health outcomes already identified by St John is the aim to have defibrillators on all marae with people trained in their use....

Christchurch school to teach on pa model
A special character Maori school opening this term in Christchurch will show that it takes a village to raise a child.

Te Pa o Rakaihautu, a state-designated character school, will offer education founded on tikanga and Te Reo Maori in a pa-based environment encouraging families to participate.

Located during term one at the old Richmond School site for year 1 to 10 pupils, the school will then move to Linwood Intermediate for at least two years growing to year 13.

"It's a little bit different to school as we knew it. It's a learning village. It's probably more akin to how it would have worked in the pa pre-European times."

"It's reconnecting with our place, our people, and our own stories."

The school would use modern technology to raise national standards and NCEA achievement of its Maori pupils.....

Iwi leaders engage on policy
The Iwi Leaders Forum is getting ready to meet ministers in Kerikeri next week to discuss the government’s legislative programme for the year ahead.

The consultation has become a regular part of the annual hui leading up to Waitangi Day commemorations.

Forum technical working group member Willie Te Aho says smaller teams are meeting officials beforehand to discuss agenda items including housing and freshwater policy.

He says it’s part of a strategy of engagement rather than trying to take the crown on in the courts....

NZEI calls for reo resources
Primary teachers’ union NZEI Te Riu Roa wants the Government to put more resources into teaching te reo Maori.

New president Louise Green says all New Zealand children should have the opportunity to learn te reo.

She says while it’s a core part of the curriculum, the available resources aren’t up to the demand from both Maori and Pakeha children and their families.

Ms Green says what is needed is a much stronger committment by Government to resource and support teachers and kaiako to improve the education system's ability to meet demand.....

PM's no show saddens Maori King
A senior member of the Rātana Church says the Maori King, Tuheitia Paki, would have been very disappointed that the Prime Minister did not attend the church's annual celebrations at the weekend.

Andre Meihana, an Apotoro Wairua (spiritual apostle) for the church, said the King usually visits Rātana Pā for the event on Saturday, but went on Friday this year so he could meet with the Prime Minister.

Mr Meihana said King Tuheitia arrived early for the pōwhiri, before the Government, to show John Key how united Māori are as a whole, including the bond between the Rātana Church and the King.

He said King Tuheitia, who is very unwell, left his sickbed to meet with Mr Key, but the Prime Minister only let the church know the day before the celebrations began that he was not going to attend....

Maori sovereignty on agenda for Otiria hui
The issue of Ngapuhi sovereignty, after a landmark Waitangi Tribunal decision, will be under the spotlight at the marae near Moerewa with some high-profile New Zealanders leading the debate.

In November the Waitangi Tribunal ruled that Ngapuhi did not cede sovereignty to the Crown when its rangatira signed the Treaty of Waitangi.

Te Kotahitanga o nga Hapu Ngapuhi instigated the inquiry and co-chairman Pita Tipene said the hapu and whanau of Tai Tokerau were elated because their case that sovereignty had never been ceded to the settler government had been vindicated.

Mr Tipene said the ruling meant that the way the country had been governed might need to be looked at and changed to give more autonomy to hapu. However, the Government has said nothing will change.

A large gathering is expected at Otiria on Friday and Saturday when a strong line-up of keynote speakers will start a robust discussion and debate around He Whakaputanga (Declaration of Independence 1835) and the Treaty of Waitangi.

The keynote speakers will include Professor of History at AUT University Dr Paul Moon, economist and philanthropist Gareth Morgan, lawyer Annette Sykes, lecturer in law at the University of Auckland Valmaine Toki, former MP and Tainui leader Tuku Morgan and lawyer Moana Jackson.

Te Kotahitanga has called the hui.

Dr Moon, a leading commentator on the treaty, maintains there is an erroneous belief that the Treaty of Waitangi is the foundation for New Zealand's system of government......

Treaty about rules of engagement
Economist Gareth Morgan believes the country needs to give serious consideration to what the Treaty of Waitangi relationship will look like once historical claims are settled.

Mr Morgan spoke at Ratana Pa yesterday on some of the ideas in his new book on the treaty, Are We There Yet?

He says it’s a topic Maori are very familiar with, but many Pakeha are just waiting for it to go away.

He says too many Pakeha think the current settlement process will be the beginning and end of any discussion about the treaty.

"As any Maori person will tell you, or any reasonable person really who has read the treaty, it’s not about the breaches, the subsequent grievances and the subsequent settlements, it’s about the rules of engagement of how these two societies coexist together, share this land, and have a mutual respect and care," Mr Morgan says....

Ngāti Whātua Ōrakei leader reflects on Auckland history
Hawke says, "We're always going to the Crown to say look we've been denied to live on our land for a hundred and something years and you want to charge us the rate that's going now because of Paratai Drive and Mission Bay."

Hawke has lived in Auckland for more than 75 years, he's chaired the Ngāti Whātua Ōrākei Trust board and has clear views about where to from here for the iwi.

"What I'd like to establish is a real good honohono with all those other groups, those 14 other groups and that we can improve the status of those Māori or tangata whenua here in Tāmaki Makaurau so that we have our own systems to be able to develop these things through councils. Assist rather than going to them and begging," says Hawke...

Tuwharetoa on track to buy crown properties
The Tuwharetoa Settlement Trust is teaming up with other entities within the iwi to buy Crown properties available under its deferred settlement process.

The trust’s ability to pick up the properties was compromised by its first set of trustees, who lost $9 millions of the tribe’s forestry settlement through poor investments and gave away another $11 million of its capital in grants.

Chair Dylan Tehau says new trustees have almost completed the restructure of the trust finances, and it now has equity of $17.7 million and is running profitably and with lower costs.

Its commercial subsidiary Tuwharetoa Limited raised $7.5 million in capital and set up a limited liability partnership with Tuwharetoa Maori Trust Board, Lake Taupo Forest Trust and Te Pae o Waimihia to buy commercial redress properties including nine schools and the Taupo courthouse, making it one of the largest land owners in the Taupo Township.

It also bought 11 forest enclaves in and around Lake Taupo and Lake Rotoaira Forests, which were on sold to the respective forest trusts.

Mr Tahau says it is now trying to pull together other trusts to help it buy 8500 hectares of Department of Corrections land and forest, valued at more than $50 million.

Time right to work for true partnership
Politicians visiting Ratana Marae yesterday got a strong message from speaker Uruea Abraham who broke protocol by speaking in English and saying it was "obvious that many of you are sitting here without being able to understand the eloquence and beauty of the Maori language".

Mr Abraham said Maori had had 175 years of understanding the English language and that the Treaty of Waitangi settlements equated to just "one cent in the dollar.

"Don't play with the Treaty of Waitangi and treat it like a game of ping pong" he urged visiting politicians. It was time for government to work towards a future of true partnership with Maori.....

Kohanga Reo's doors open to deregistered charities
The Kohanga Reo National Trust says their doors are open to some Kohanga Reo which have been de-registered for not filing their returns on time.

Charities Services is in the process of deregistering those who have not sent in an annual return for at least two years.

Some 2000 charities were warned last year that if they did not get up to date, they would be de-registered, losing their tax breaks, and the right to call themselves charities.

Four independent Kohanga Reo - separate to the National Trust - have since been de-registered.

The Kohanga Reo National Trust's spokesperson, Derek Fox, said more than 450 kohanga, which is the majority, come under the trust......

Opportunity to learn te reo Maori critical for success
All New Zealand children should have the opportunity to learn te reo Maori, NZEI Te Riu Roa says.

NZEI Te Riu Roa President Louise Green says the New Zealanders of the future will need to be more bi-cultural and multi-cultural, not less.

"Schools and ECE services want to support the right of all Kiwi kids to access our country's cultural heritage and the ability to be competent and comfortable in a bi-cultural environment.

"It's a core part of our curriculum already but we could do much better.. The issue is not about making language learning compulsory or not. It is about the urgent need to meet today's demand - many children and their families, both Pakeha and Maori, cannot access the level of teaching and learning of, or in, te reo that they want now...

Treaty settlements not 'genuine partnership' – Greens
Many Treaty of Waitangi settlements aren't "as good as they need to be" the Green Party says, and it wants a review of the settlement process.

In her speech this morning at Ratana, near Whanganui, Greens co-leader Metiria Turei said the Crown has used its power to "force through" many of the deals so far.

"Our people have had to accept them due to political constraints and the pressures of poverty and time."

Ms Turei says her party has no faith the current settlement process "is a reflection of a genuine partnership".

"Indeed, this divisive process has the potential to create new breaches of Te Tiriti (the treaty). They cannot be full and final when new grievances are being created with each one."

The Government dictates terms of negotiations from start to finish, she said.

"It is this dominant view that sees next to no land returned to tangata whenua, and only small amounts of financial redress."

The Greens want a comprehensive review of the treaty settlement process "that sets out to put the power back in the hands of hapū and iwi, and that honours the generations of work that Māori have put into holding the Crown to account for its breaches".....

Pharmac dishes rongoa advice at Ratana
Government drug buying agency Pharmac, Quitline and the Maori Pharmacists Association Nga Kaitiaki o te Puna Rongoa are at Ratana Pa today and tomorrow dispensing advice on the medications people are using.

Maori responsiveness manager Angela Cathro from Ngati Raukawa says Pharmac’s job is not just to ensure the right medicines are available for New Zealanders at the right price, but also that people know how to use their medication effectively.

"We’ve teamed up with the Maori Pharmacists Association because we acknoweldge they are experts when it comes to Maori and medications and we want to provide a space where Maori feel comfortable to come in and talk to Maori pharmacists about their medications," she says....

Water - Should it be managed nationally or regionally?
Despite it not being a major focus, both groups say the issue of financial revenue must also be discussed.

“They are profiting from the sale of water use amongst themselves. What we are saying is we need to sit down and discuss that side of the issue to do with water as well,” says Sir Curtis.

“We would expect income to come in from that commission, a proportion to go to Māori people because of their customary association with the rivers so that they are able to engage their own people,” says Sir Durie.....

Iwi leader: Tuwharetoa will bounce back
An inquiry by the Tuwharetoa Settlement Trust has found it only has $16 million of its 2009 $66 million settlement left because of bad financial decisions.

Haami Piripi - from Te Rarawa Runanga in the Far North - said there would always be problems for an iwi which had a strong community focus rather than being driven by purely profit.

He said all iwi have a need for increased financial support to understand and utilise financial advice and the government should have a role.

"It's no use just handing us redress payments and assets and just walking away from the relationship."...

Māori Conservation Foundation Course
Eleven men and women of Ngāti Pāhauwera descent are celebrating after recently graduating from the Māori Conservation Foundation Course.

Following the Ngāti Pāhauwera Treaty Settlement, DOC committed to enhancing our relationship with Ngāti Pāhauwera. We worked with Ngāti Pāhauwera and The Ministry of Social Development to create an eight-week pilot programme— the Māori Conservation Foundation Course.

The pilot was designed to give Ngāti Pāhauwera descendants the means to develop a sustainable future for themselves and their land.

The students spent their time undertaking a mix of classroom and practical learning, with lots of opportunities to connect with the land....

Students lacking politcal awareness
A member of a Maori lobby group says younger Maori seem to have little appetite for protest.

Te Ao Pritchard is a member of Te Ata Tino Toa, which successfully lobbied for the Maori flag to be flown from the Auckland Harbour Bridge and other institutions.

She says when she speaks to today’s students, they show little interest in taking action to support change.

Her generation of activists learned from previous groups like Nga Tamatoa and Te Kawariki.....

Bad calls cut treaty payout cash from $66m to $16m but Tuwharetoa Settlement Trust founders escape court action
Buying out bad loans and other poor investment decisions helped slash an iwi group's Treaty of Waitangi settlement from $66 million to $16 million, an inquiry has found.

But the trust group in charge of the remaining money says it will not take it's founding trustees to court to recover the money because of the cost and "ongoing damage to the reputation of the trust and the iwi"......

Science looks to traditional Maori techniques
Plant and Food Research is focussing on recruiting Māori students to help fulfil a growing need for specialist skills in horticulture and food science.

It is also working with Māori communities around the country to get rangatahi interested in the industry.

The centre offers scholarships to Maori for its summer student programme....

Shipley to talk on treaty gift
Former prime minister Dame Jenny Shipley and Anglican Bishop Kito Pikaahu will share the floor at Te Herenga Waka Marae in Wellington on Sunday for the 12th annual Waitangi Rua Rautau lectures.

The lectures were started in 2001 by the New Zealand Maori Council as an annual acknowledgement of improvement in ethnic relations and progress on the Treaty of Waitangi, with the aim of setting goals as to what the country should be like in 2040, the 200th anniversary of the treaty.

Dame Jenny Shipley describes her lecture as reflections, observations and projections by an informed and committed Pakeha New Zealander on the purpose and relevance of Waitangi Day commemorations, the gift the Treaty offers and its future relevance as we continue to develop our identity as New Zealanders....

Kohanga teachers learn of kingitanga
Kohanga reo teachers from around the Waikato are at a hui at Waahi Pa this week learning about the Kingitanga.

The workshop is being run by Te Kahui Rangatahi, a youth group dedicated to fostering interest in the Kingitanga among younger generations.

The hui was about empowering whanau to share and educate tamariki and whanau about the movement and tikanga Maori.....

Roopu encouraged to fly Maori flag
Councils, government agencies, schools and other organisations are being encouraged to fly the Maori flag this Waitangi Day.

Te Ao Pritchard from Te Ata Tino Toa says the battle to have the flag flown on the Auckand Harbour Bridge has been won, but other roopu seem slow to take up what is an official symbol...

Fresh assault on Resource Management Act
Maori Development Minister Te Ururoa Flavell is expecting water issues and the Resource Management Act to be major issues for the year ahead.

Mr Flavell says part of the debate will be water allocation and the nature of Maori rights in water.

"The Iwi Leaders Forum and their technical team have certainly got the ear of the ministers for Finance, Deputy Prime Minister, the Minister for Environment and myself. My role is to support iwi with regard to their claims, I have no qualms about that, but it remains to be seen how far that discussion goes," he says....

Land and language top priorities for Flavell
Minister of Maori Development Te Ururoa Flavell's two top priorities this year are Te Reo Rangatira and Maori land.

The Ture Whenua Maori Act was currently being reviewed, while public feedback on the Maori language bill, which was called for by the Maori Affairs Committee, closed at the beginning of last month.

This year, his eye was firmly locked on improvements for tangata whenua.

He said in terms of Maori development he wanted to look to the future.

Mr Flavell said it was important to complete the review of the Ture Whenua Act to allow tangata whenua to use their land they had and turn them into economic asset instead of a burden.

He said he hoped the Reo Maori review and the Maori language entity, Te Matawai, would be finished by the end of the year.

Mr Flavell said improving Whanau Ora was also a priority, so agencies were working together rather than in isolation.

Moves to reassure public over water rights
The Māori Council has moved to reassure people that while tāngata whenua would have rights to water under a new proposal, they would not prevail over the interests of the general public.

"We are very keen to affirm that all people have rights and acknowledge that Māori people do have a 'senior right' - to use a term that is sometimes used in the United States, but it must not prevail over the general public good.

"We can make provisions that do acknowledge the Māori interest while ensuring that water is available for the future generations of all people....

Why my Pakeha child goes to Kohanga Reo
So, here is why.

My nearly 2-year-old daughter, Fern, may be Pakeha, but she is from Aotearoa, New Zealand. She can learn Pakeha culture and the English language from her parents and family, but I also want her to learn Maori customs and culture. We live in a bicultural (if not multicultural) society and I want her to be equally familiar and comfortable interacting with Pakeha and Maori, in English or Te Reo.

I only moved to Hamilton from overseas two years ago. Before that, I was shockingly ignorant about New Zealand's history, and when I learned about this country's past 250-plus years, I felt sadness about the historical relationship between Maori and white colonisers.

Even today, I often feel I am living in a divided society. I have witnessed the full spectrum from outright racism to unintended discrimination and embedded prejudices from both sides, and I wish it wasn't like this.

Not growing up here, I have been told I just don't understand the relationship between Pakeha and Maori, and maybe I never will. But I know that I don't want my daughter to grow up with stereotypes and prejudices about people from different races....

.Then she'll grow up and fight institutional and systemic injustice and prejudices. Yep, that's definitely how it plays out in my mind.

Because we are all people. Not all the same, but definitely all equal.....

Full article here > http://www.stuff.co.nz/stuff-nation/11091816/Why-I-send-my-Pakeha-child-to-Kohanga-Reo

Indigenous voice critical in oil protest
A Greenpeace campaigner against deep sea oil drilling says Maori opposition will be an important factor in whether Norway’s Statoil will continue its exploration programme off the Northland coast.....

But what they are very vulnerable to is opposition from indigenous peoples. Indigenous peoples around the world have led campaigns, very successful campaigns against the exploitation of their natural resources and the associated pollution that comes with that " he says.

Rough water for year ahead
The Iwi Leaders Group and the New Zealand Maori Council could be coming to a joint position on water.

It’s a hot topic this year, as the Government tries to develop a new policy for water allocation.

It has tried to exclude the Maori Council from the discussions, despite the council leading action in the courts and the Waitangi Tribunal over the partial privatisaiton of state power generators.

It could upset the Government’s plans if the iwi leaders pick up the Maori Council position, which includes usage charges for commercial users and the prospect of rent being paid to some Maori resource owners.

The two groups will be discussing the issue this week as they prepare for the Waitangi hui, where Government ministers are booked to meet with the Iwi Leaders Forum.....

Interesting Stats
* Life expectancy for Maori men is 72.8 years while it is 80.2 years for Pakeha males. It is 76.5 for Maori woman and 83.7 for Pakeha women

* Prevalence of smoking within Maori are 39.7% while it is only 18.6% amongst Pakeha

* Obesity is 76.3% amongst Maori and 60.8% amongst Pakeha.

* Suicides per 100 000 are 23.9% for Maori men and 8.8% for Maori women and 15.4% for Pakeha men and 5.7% for Pakeha women.

* Infant mortality per 1000 births are 7% for maori and 5.5% for Pakeha

* Participation in early childhood is 90.9% for Maori and 98% for Pakeha

* 60.9% of Maori leaving school have NCEA while 82.1% of Pakeha school leavers have it.

* Only 9.1% of Maori have a University degree, 18.6% of Pakeha do,

* Unemployment in 2012 soared amongst Maori (14.8%) while it only marginally increased for Pakeha to 5.5%

* In 2013 Maori media weekly income was $767 while it was $863 for Pakeha.

* The proportion of Maori who are on income tested benefits is 20% while only 6.2% for Pakeha.

* Household over crowding impacts 2.7% of Pakeha households but impacts 11% of Maori households.

* 86% of Pakeha households have internet access, only 68% of Maori households have it.

No more cake stalls for He Toa Takitimu
The head of one of the largest Ngati Kahungunu settlement groups says it wants to become a major investor in the Hawkes Bay economy.

He Toa Takitimu, representing the hapu of Heretaunga-Tamatea, is in line to receive a settlement of more than $100 million.

It signed an agreement-in-principle last June this year and hopes to complete negotiations and have settlement legislation passed by June 2016.

In a recent briefing, chair David Tipene-Leach told Hastings District councillors it would be one of the largest settlements so far.

"For so long our marae have been dependent on sausage sizzles and cake stalls and that is no longer going to be the way that things work," he said.

The deal will include some crown land, including the vesting and gift back of a reserve at Cape Kidnappers, known to Maori as Mataupo Maui, the fish hook of Maui.

The iwi wants to talk with the Geographic Board about renaming Clive and Hastings as Waipureku and Heretaunga respectively........

Tribe's ban on kaimoana to continue
A rahui barring fishing or collecting seafood along the Doubtless Bay coast has been extended by a month because a diver missing at Cable Bay has yet to be found.

Rangi Tapu, 25, of Auckland, went missing while diving for kina about 50m offshore last Thursday. As of yesterday he had not been found, despite extensive searches by police, family members, Far North Land Search and Rescue, Coastguard and firefighters. Members of the Police National Dive Squad also conducted a grid search of the sea floor on Friday.

The official search ended on Friday night but the family's beachside vigil is continuing.

A rahui placed on the coast between Mangonui and Taipa by Ngati Kahu kaumatua on Friday has now been extended a month.

Anahera Herbert-Graves, chief executive of Te Runanga-a-Iwi o Ngati Kahu, asked the public to abide by tikanga by not catching fish or taking seafood from the area.

Ngati Kahu tikanga called for a two-week rahui if a body was found in the first week after a drowning; if the body had not been found after a week, a month-long rahui was imposed....

Locals want to put a stop to littering on Uretiti Beach
"They really have no idea, which is sad. What is the priority here is the need to induct them into the practices of Māori world in relation to the land, the sea and collecting seafood," says Paki.

Patuharakeke had already filed an application to manage the traditional seafood resources in their territory and remain focussed on the realisation of their rights under the Treaty of Waitangi to have authority over their resources.

Paki says, "Patuharakeke are the stewards of the place. This has been passed down us by our ancestors, the need to care for the land, sea and coastline.".....

Waikato Maori science students shine
Seventeen Maori science and engineering students at the University of Waikato had their studies boosted by scholarships totaling $174,000.

The awards, ranging from $250 to 20,000, came from the university, private trusts, iwi, and leading New Zealand companies.

The biggest putea went to Master of Science student Te Puea Dempsey, who picked up two scholarships totaling $30,000, including a Rena Research Scholarship.

Another $20,000 Rena Research Scholarship went to Caleb Sweeney.

MSc student Kate Mauriohooho received two scholarships totalling $17,000, and Blaise Forrester-Gauntlet was awarded $17,700 from four scholarships.....

Kohanga reo ready to open Palmerston North
A long-awaited kohanga reo will be opening in Highbury this month - the next step in the Palmerston North suburb's efforts to foster families' education opportunities.

The community has been granted a licence by the Ministry of Education to open its new Maori language immersion early childhood centre with $100,000 of government funding.

The hapu trust offices in the Highbury Shopping Centre near Tui Reserve have been transformed into the kohanga and the budget was likely to hit $500,000.

The centre has received the nod from Te Runanga Nui o Nga Kura Kaupapa Maori, the governing body of New Zealand's kura kaupapa, to be a chartered, or independent, facility offering free education.

The playcentre's 20 spots are already filled and a waiting list is in place....

Dawn of a New Era for the Bible in Te Reo Maori

Anglican Bishop Kito Pikaahu, Bishop of Te Tai Tokerau (Northland-Auckland), says Bible Society's new Gospel of Luke in Māori is exciting because it presents the Good News of Jesus Christ in a fresh way.

More than 60 years after the current Māori Bible was published, Bible Society New Zealand (BSNZ) has just published not one, but two brand new sample translations of Te Rongopai a Ruka, the Gospel of Luke in Māori.

Bible Society is so keen to bring the Bible to a new generation of Māori speakers the publication has a blank feedback column for reader's notes. The idea is to stimulate wider discussion within the Māori community on which translation style is more suited to today’s Māori speakers.....

Stephen Pattemore, BSNZ Translations Director commented, "now 200 years after that first reading from Luke’s Gospel, it is still an important and urgent task that all New Zealanders should hear and understand the 'good tidings of great joy.' As society changes, language changes with it, and the language of our grandchildren is not the same as the language of our grandfathers."

Government agree to create water strategy
The issue of water is back on the agenda after the Government agreed to creating a water strategy.

Iwi leaders are taking this matter of significant importance to Māori nationwide for discussion before entering into talks with the Crown at Waitangi this year.....

Tau says, “They'll have to come round in the end because their own law is telling them they are wrong. If they fail to address that under their law, then they'll have to step aside and let Māori run this country.”

Te Aho says, “The whole matter is being held up due to the Crown not meeting its obligations to covenants that were tabled in the Supreme Court. If it fails to do so, then the door will open to us again to determine our rights and authority over this resource.”....

Monolingual kiwis a risk to the economy
Harvey says young people overseas are learning two and more languages: "Why are we short-changing New Zealand young people? Ideally, New Zealand students should be leaving secondary school with high level achievement in Maori, English and one other language. In as many cases as possible, one of these languages should be a students' home language." ....

Maniapoto gear up for claim talks
The group which coordinated the 183 Ngati Maniapoto claims in the Te Rohe Potae hearings wants the mandate to negotiate a settlement.

According to the application filed with the Office of Treaty Settlements, the Ngati Maniapoto Large Natural Grouping Mandate Body will be known as Te Kawau Maro for the negotiations.

Waitangi Tribunal hearings in the claim area finished in December, and there will be one last hearing in Wellington next month.

The Manipoto claims cover about 200 hapu and more than 57 marae from the King Country or Te Rohe Potae and the south Waikato region.

Ngati Raukawa, Ngati Tuwharetoa, tribes from Whanganui, Ngati Hikairo and other tribes affiliated to Tainui waka also had claims within Te Rohe Potae which need to be negotiated separately.

It is proposed Te Kawau Maro will include not more than 16 members, two each from the Maniapoto Maori Trust Board, Te Kaumatua Kaunihera o Maniapoto and the six claim regions.

A postal and internet ballot will be required before the mandate is confirmed.

Submissions on the draft mandate strategy need to be in to the OTS by February 8.

In 1886 the Te Rohe Potae covered 1,636,000 acres.

The Waitangi Trubunal heard about what Maniapoto call the Ohaki Tapu or sacred oath, consisting of agreements with the Crown recognising the full autonomy of the Rohe Potae chiefs over their lands.....

More than $174K for Māori science and engineering students
In 2014, more than $174,000 in scholarships was awarded to Māori Science and Engineering students from the University of Waikato.

The awards, which ranged from $250 to $20,000, gave 17 students a financial boost towards their undergraduate, masters or PhD studies.

The scholarships came from a variety of supporters, including Waikato University, private trusts, iwi and leading New Zealand companies. ....

Scholarship up to $3k for Maori
Northland's Maori tertiary students with a passion for their language and culture can now apply for a Sir Apirana Ngata Memorial Scholarship.

The scholarship, funded by the Maori Soldiers Trust, distributes between $500 and $3000 per recipient to support students on their academic journey.

Established by the Maori Soldiers Trust Act 1957, the scholarship was set up to promote and support higher education amongst Maori.

Five Northlanders have been awarded the scholarship in previous years with one Whangarei woman receiving $2000......

New approach to recover $4m in unpaid rates
The Northland Regional Council is a looking at a two-pronged approach to rating to help recover almost $4 million in unpaid rates, with almost two-thirds owed on Maori-owned land.

The council's Te Tai Tokerau Maori advisory committee chairman, Dover Samuels, says the problem of unpaid rates on Maori land has languished in the "too hard" basket for too long.

The regional council is owed more than $4 million of unpaid rates and penalties in the Far North District alone, as of June 30 this year, and Mr Samuels said roughly two-thirds of that related to Maori land.

"That's a lot of money by anyone's account, especially if you consider our council's entire rates demand in the Far North for the current financial year is just over $7 million.".....

Coastal claim stuns Mahia bach owners
Mahia bach owners were stunned yesterday to find out that a claim for customary marine title to the foreshore and seabed around Mahia Peninsula could exclude those who are not members of the Rongomaiwahine group with fines of up to $5000 for those who go there without permission.

Around 120 bach owners and claimants crammed the Mokotahi Hall 187km north of Napier at 4pm yesterday to hear Hugh Barr of the Council of Outdoor Recreation Associations of New Zealand explain how the Marine and Coastal Area Act 2011 opened up the entire coastal area to claim by tribal groups......

Mr Barr told the sometimes-rowdy meeting that from 1840 to 2011 New Zealand’s foreshore and seabed was owned by the Crown on behalf of all New Zealanders as a public common, available to everyone.

This all changed in 2011 when Prime Minister John Key gave away public ownership of the coastal area to buy the parliamentary support of the Maori Party by passing the Marine and Coastal Area Act, Mr Barr said.

Disregarding 174 years of settled law, the Act allows a coastal tribe to gain customary marine title if they can show that they have exclusively occupied and used the foreshore and seabed since 1840.

Customary marine title gives the right of veto, the ability to charge fees for use of current and new slipways, wharves, aquaculture areas, marinas, and exclusive mining rights to iron-sand and minerals in the area...

Four other coastal claims are in progress with more likely.

The biggest claim is by Ngati Porou for about 200km of the coast north of Gisborne, Ngati Pahauwera wants 30km either side of the mouth of the Mohaka River between Wairoa and Napier, while There are two separate claims for the Coromandel coast....

Tainui look ahead to 2050
Rāhui Papa says, “relationships were strengthened last year, whether it was with politicians, Government, or Iwi, these relationships have been grounded and will blossom in the year ahead.” ...

Goals for year 2015 include,Tainui Group Holding reaching a billion dollars, looking further into the claims for shores of the west coast, while being active about what we can do to take better care of the river. ....