• Tau Henare
Maori Affairs

Mr Henare today moved to allay fears that recent proposals regarding the Maori Reserved Land Bill would disadvantage Maori owners.

The National New Zealand First Government has moved to accommodate concerns of the lessees in relation to the Maori Reserved Lands Bill by agreeing to a Supplementary Order Paper that would allow leaseholders who believe that the value of the properties has been significantly eroded to test that in the Land Valuation Tribunal

However, Mr Henare wanted to stress that the Supplementary Order Paper will also give Maori owners the same right to test the adequacy of their compensation via the Land Valuation Tribunal process.

"So in this way, lessees and owners would have the right to elect to have their compensation determined by the Land Valuation Tribunal instead of by the compensation formula provided in the Bill. This is what the lessees have been asking for, but it is only fair that we also offer that process to the owners."

Mr Henare said that the effect of the Supplementary Order Paper will be to give both owners and lessees the option to either take the compensation offered under the Bill, or to opt for the Land Valuation Tribunal process. "This is fair to both parties, and neither the lessees nor the lessors have been disadvantaged in any way".

Mr Henare was confident that the both parties would see this is as a useful change to the Bill.