Agreements in Principle signed with Ngāti Rangiwewehi and Tapuika

  • Christopher Finlayson
Treaty of Waitangi Negotiations

The Crown signed agreements in principle towards settling historical Treaty grievances with Ngāti Rangiwewehi and Tapuika in Wellington today, Minister for Treaty of Waitangi Negotiations Christopher Finlayson announced.

The agreements in principle outline broad settlement packages which include historical, cultural, financial and commercial redress to settle the historical Treaty claims of the iwi.

The Ngāti Rangiwewehi and Tapuika agreements include a total financial redress amount of $6 million each. The agreements also include cultural redress and the right to purchase particular Crown-owned properties for each iwi. As part of the cultural redress, the Crown will vest the Hamurana Springs Recreational Reserve in Ngāti Rangiwewehi and Pokopoko Stream Scenic Reserve in Tapuika, subject to conditions including the protection of public access.

“These agreements bring the final resolution of all historical Treaty claims in the region a step closer,” Mr Finlayson said.  “The historical claims of the Te Arawa confederation of iwi are for the most part settled, with only a handful of groups remaining. Agreements such as those reached today give iwi and the wider community a sense of certainty of what our landscape will look like once this important task is finished.”

Representatives from Ngāti Rangiwewehi and Tapuika travelled from the Rotorua and Bay of Plenty area to Wellington today to attend the signing ceremony event for the milestone.
The next step for the Crown and Ngāti Rangiwewehi and Tapuika is to negotiate detailed deeds of settlement based on the Agreements, which will set out the full redress packages in detail. When the deeds of settlement are ratified by the people of Ngāti Rangiwewehi and Tapuika, the settlements will be signed and implemented through legislation.
 

Questions and answers

1. What is the total cost to the Crown?

The total cost to the Crown of the Ngāti Rangiwewehi and Tapuika settlement redress is $12 million ($6 million each), plus the value of the cultural redress properties, and interest, and redress for enhancing cultural presence.

2. Is there any private land involved?

No.

3. Are the public’s rights affected?

No.  All existing public access rights in relation to areas affected by this settlement will be preserved.  Public access, recreational use, reserve status and existing third party rights are all maintained.

4. Are any place names changed?

The offer agrees to explore the possibility of five place name changes (three in Ngāti Rangiwewehi’s agreement in principle, two in Tapuika’s) with the New Zealand Geographic Board/Ngā Pou Taunaha o Aotearoa. These will be reflected in the Ngāti Rangiwewehi Deed of Settlement if the names are changed.

5. What happens to memorials on private titles?

The legislative restrictions (memorials) placed on the title of Crown properties and former Crown properties now in private ownership will be removed once all Treaty claims in the area have been settled.

6. When will the settlement take effect?

Ngāti Rangiwewehi and Tapuika, respectively, and the Crown will commence drafting deeds of settlement following the signing of these agreements in principle. Once the deeds of settlement have been agreed and ratified by the claimant communities, settlement legislation will process through the House. The settlement will take effect 20 business days after the settlement legislation receives the Royal Assent.

7. Does Ngāti Rangiwewehi have the right to come back and make further claims about the behaviour of the Crown in the 19th and 20th centuries?

No. If a Deed of Settlement is ratified and passed into law, parties agree it will be a final and comprehensive settlement of all the historical (relating to events before 21 September 1992) Treaty of Waitangi claims of the iwi. The settlement legislation, once passed, will prevent Ngāti Rangiwewehi and Tapuika, respectively, from re-litigating the historical claims before the Waitangi Tribunal or the courts.

The settlement package will still allow the iwi to pursue claims against the Crown for acts or omissions after 21 September 1992, including claims based on the continued existence of aboriginal title or customary rights relating to land or water. The Crown also retains the right to dispute such claims or the existence of such title rights.

8. Who benefits from the settlements?

All members of Ngāti Rangiwewehi and Tapuika, respectively, wherever they may now live.
 

Summary of the Agreement in Principle between the Crown and Ngāti Rangiwewehi

Background to the Agreement in Principle

Ngāti Rangiwewehi is a Te Arawa iwi with an area of interest in the Rotorua area and a population of approximately 2,300 according to the 2006 census.  Ngāti Rangiwewehi and others stood aside from the Affiliate Te Arawa Iwi and Hapū settlement negotiated in 2008, and are not part of the Central North Island Forests Iwi Collective.

Ngāti Rangiwewehi is represented in negotiations by Te Maru o Ngāti Rangiwewehi Iwi Authority who, together with the Tapuika Iwi Authority, signed joint terms of negotiation with the Crown on 14 August 2008.  The Crown recognised their mandate on 30 October 2008.  The Ngāti Rangiteaorere Claims Committee joined the negotiations in 2009 – the three together form the collective Nga Punawai o Te Tokotoru.

On 16 June 2011, the Crown signed an Agreement in Principle with Te Maru o Ngāti Rangiwewehi Iwi Authority.  The parties will now develop a detailed Deed of Settlement based on this agreement.

Summary of the redress

The Agreement in Principle state that the Ngāti Rangiwewehi Deed of Settlement will be the final settlement of all historical claims of Ngāti Rangiwewehi resulting from acts or omissions by the Crown prior to 21 September 1992.  The redress package includes:

• an agreed historical account and Crown acknowledgements, which form the basis for a Crown apology to Ngāti Rangiwewehi;
• cultural redress; and
• financial and commercial redress

Historical account, Crown acknowledgements, and Crown apology

The Deed of Settlement will contain an agreed historical account that will outline the historical relationship between the Crown and Ngāti Rangiwewehi.

On the basis of the historical account, the Crown will acknowledge in the Deed of Settlement that certain actions or omissions of the Crown were a breach of the Treaty of Waitangi and its principles. The Crown will then offer an apology to Ngāti Rangiwewehi for the acknowledged Crown breaches.

Ngāti Rangiwewehi and the Crown have largely agreed on the key themes and structure of the historical account. 

Cultural redress

Cultural redress recognises the spiritual, cultural and historical associations of iwi with places in their respective rohe.

In recognising the relationship of Ngāti Rangiwewehi with the land and waterways within their rohe and the paramount cultural importance of Hamurana Springs, the Crown will vest Hamurana Springs Recreational Reserve (36.7 hectares) to Ngāti Rangiwewehi subject to conditions. Three other sites will also be vested in recognition of their cultural significance.

The Crown will provide 15 statutory acknowledgements over whenua and waterways of historical, cultural and spiritual significance to Ngāti Rangiwewehi. This is to recognise the association Ngāti Rangiwewehi has with a particular site and enhances their ability to participate in specified Resource Management Act processes.

The Crown is aware of the enduring sense of grievance felt by Ngāti Rangiwewehi at the taking of land around Taniwha Springs, the location of the concrete pump-house over Taniwha Springs and the continued abstraction of water from the spring. The Crown will continue to facilitate discussions between Ngāti Rangiwewehi and the Rotorua District Council until the finalising of the Deed of Settlement. 

The Deed of Settlement will also provide for relationship instruments to improve the relationships that Ngāti Rangiwewehi has with the Crown, local authorities and relevant third parties. This includes protocols setting out the way in which specific government agencies will interact with Ngāti Rangiwewehi in the future, a letter of recognition from the Ministry of Fisheries confirming that Ngāti Rangiwewehi are entitled to participate in the Ministry’s fisheries planning processes, an undertaking from the Crown to facilitate a new relationship with the Bay of Plenty District and Regional Councils, and an undertaking from the Minister for Treaty of Waitangi Negotiations to write letters of introduction to relevant third parties.

Financial and commercial redress

The total financial redress amount to be paid under the settlement is $6.0 million, plus interest on the remaining settlement amount.  Interest will accrue until settlement date, depending on the timing of the initialling of the settlement.

The Crown offers five commercial transfer properties for purchase by Ngāti Rangiwewehi including parts of Te Matai and Mamaku North forests.

The Crown further offers the opportunity to purchase five Crown properties at market value through a right of first refusal, should they become surplus within a period of 171 years.

Ngāti Rangiwewehi has threshold interests in the Crown Agreed Proportion (CAP) of lands in the Central North Island Forests Land Settlement (CNI Settlement). The Crown remains open to receiving a proposal from iwi for resolution of the CAP and both parties will endeavour to resolve the interests of Ngāti Rangiwewehi before finalising the deed of settlement.

Next steps

The Agreement in Principle is subject to the Crown confirming that the overlapping interests of neighbouring groups in relation to the settlement redress outlined above have been addressed to its satisfaction.

Ngāti Rangiwewehi and the Crown will now draft a detailed Deed of Settlement, which will be subject to ratification by the respective claimant communities.  All eligible registered members of Ngāti Rangiwewehi will have the opportunity to vote on whether to accept the Crown’s offer in their Deed of Settlement.

If the claimant community ratifies the Deed of Settlement, the Deed will be signed by the Crown and the iwi authority, and the settlement will be implemented through legislation. The settlement will be for the benefit of all members of Ngāti Rangiwewehi.

Summary of the Agreement in Principle between the Crown and Tapuika

The origins of Tapuika date back to the arrival of Tia and his son Tapuika aboard the Te Arawa waka. The tribal estate of the Tapuika iwi was formed on the lands within the taumau of Tia – the claim bespoken of by Tia know as Te Takapu o Tapuika. Te Takapu o Tapuika (around the Bay of Plenty area) extends from Wairakei stream on the coast to Maketu and Waihi, inland via the Kaikokopu / Pokopoko stream to Te Hiapo, towards the Pueto (Haruru) stream, onto the Ohaupara stream and to Otanewainuku, west to Opoutihi and on to the Waoku area, then to Otawa along the Papamoa Ridge to the starting point at Wairakei.   

Tapuika is represented in negotiations by the Tapuika Iwi Authority who, together with Te Maru o Ngāti Rangiwewehi Iwi Authority, signed joint terms of negotiation with the Crown on 14 August 2008. The Crown recognised their mandate on 30 October 2008. The Ngāti Rangiteaorere Claims Committee joined the negotiations in 2009 – the three together form the collective Nga Punawai o Te Tokotoru.

On 16 June 2011, the Crown signed an Agreement in Principle with the Tapuika Iwi Authority. The parties will now develop a detailed Deed of Settlement based on this agreement.

Summary of the redress

The Agreement in Principle state that the Tapuika Deed of Settlement will be the final settlement of all historical claims of Tapuika resulting from acts or omissions by the Crown prior to 21 September 1992.  The redress package includes:
• an agreed historical account and Crown acknowledgements, which form the basis for a Crown apology to Tapuika;
• cultural redress; and
• financial and commercial redress

Historical account, Crown acknowledgements, and Crown apology

The Deed of Settlement will contain an agreed historical account that will outline the historical relationship between the Crown and Tapuika.

On the basis of the historical account, the Crown will acknowledge in the Deed of Settlement that certain actions or omissions of the Crown were a breach of the Treaty of Waitangi and its principles. The Crown will then offer an apology to Tapuika for the acknowledged Crown breaches.

Tapuika and the Crown have largely agreed on the key themes and structure of the historical account.

Cultural Redress

Cultural redress recognises the spiritual, cultural and historical associations of iwi with places in their respective rohe.

The Crown will vest Pokopoko Stream Scenic Reserve (134.4 hectares) and 12 other sites of cultural significance (subject to relevant conditions) in Tapuika. In recognising the strong cultural association Tapuika has with Te Puke, the Crown offers $0.5 million to Tapuika to enhance their cultural presence in that area.

The Crown will provide an overlay classification over Opoutihi (20 hectares), which recognises a statement of how Tapuika describes their values and principles, their association with the area, and identifies actions to avoid harm to these. The Crown will also provide 21 statutory acknowledgements over whenua and waterways of historical, cultural and spiritual significance to Tapuika, as well as a deed of recognition over the Kaituna River.     

The Crown will continue negotiations with Tapuika on establishing a co-governance arrangement for the lower Kaituna River catchment to recognise the paramount importance of the Kaituna River and its tributaries to Tapuika and to address the deep concern of Tapuika regarding the health and wellbeing of the river. The Crown will facilitate discussions between Tapuika, the Bay of Plenty Regional Council, relevant local authorities and other iwi with interests in the lower Kaituna River catchment until the finalising of the Deed of Settlement.

The Deed of Settlement will also provide for relationship instruments to improve the relationships that Tapuika has with the Crown, local authorities and relevant third parties. This includes protocols setting out the way in which specific government agencies will interact with Tapuika in the future, a letter of recognition from the Ministry of Fisheries confirming that Tapuika are entitled to participate in the Ministry’s fisheries planning processes, an undertaking from the Crown to facilitate discussions between Tapuika and the Western Bay of Plenty District Council, and an undertaking from the Minister for Treaty of Waitangi Negotiations to write letters of introduction to relevant third parties.

Financial redress and commercial redress

The total financial redress amount to be paid under the settlement is $6.0 million, plus interest on the remaining settlement amount.  Interest will accrue until settlement date, depending on the timing of the initialling of the settlements.

The Crown offers 11 commercial transfer properties for purchase by Tapuika including parts of Te Matai, Kaharoa, and Puwhenua forests.  The Crown further offers 7 properties in central Te Puke as commercial transfer or deferred selection properties.

The Crown offers Tapuika the opportunity to purchase the land under the Police Station in Te Puke and lease it back to the Crown on similar terms as other New Zealand Police properties in recent Treaty settlements.

Finally the Crown offers rights of first refusal over 16 properties (either Ministry of Education or New Zealand Transport Agency properties). In addition the Crown offers a second right of purchase to Tapuika over 7 properties that are currently offered to Waitaha. If these properties are not taken by Waitaha, Tapuika will be offered the option to purchase these properties at market value on settlement date.

Next steps

The Crown will explore providing a Deed of Recognition over Te Rerenga and Waiari Streams, and including in the Tapuika Deed of Settlement the ability of Tapuika to bring a contemporary claim to water.

The Agreement in Principle is subject to the Crown confirming that the overlapping interests of neighbouring groups in relation to the settlement redress outlined above have been addressed to its satisfaction.

Tapuika and the Crown will now draft a detailed Deed of Settlement, which will be subject to ratification by the respective claimant communities.  All eligible registered members of Tapuika will have the opportunity to vote on whether to accept the Crown’s offer in their Deed of Settlement.

If the claimant community ratifies the Deed of Settlement, the deed will be signed by the Crown and the iwi authority, and the settlement will be implemented through legislation. The settlement will be for the benefit of all members of Tapuika.