Hauraki iwi to have say on river plan
Part of the northeast Waikato is to be withdrawn from the currently notified Proposed Waikato Regional Plan Change 1 – Waikato and Waipa River Catchments to allow for consultation with Hauraki iwi.
The land area of just over 120,000 hectares to be withdrawn fans out from just north of Morrinsville, northward along the eastern side of Lake Waikare to Tuakau, across to the Hunua Ranges, to the northern regional boundary.
The land involved is about 11 per cent of the Waikato and Waipa rivers catchment in total.
It has 6135 unique ratepayers (about six per cent of landowners affected by the plan change), including those in small centres like Te Kauwhata.
The area includes the towns of Te Kauwhata, Meremere, Mercer, Pokeno, Waeranga and Maramarua, and key water bodies, including part of the main stem of the Waikato River, the Whangamarino Wetland, Maramarua River, Whangamarino River, Mangatawhiri River, Mangatangi Stream, Upper Mangatawhiri Res- ervoir and the Mangatangi Reservoir.
‘‘Consultation with those Hauraki iwi authorities who have an interest in the catchment will enable issues of concern to be identified and how these issues could be addressed,’’ said council chief executive Vaughan Payne.
‘‘Waikato Regional Council intends that the area being withdrawn may be re-incorporated into the plan change process next year.’’
The area being withdrawn from the plan change for now relates to an area of interest that Hauraki iwi hold in the catchment.
The withdrawal comes after Hauraki iwi authorities raised concerns regarding consultation with them during the Healthy Rivers Wai Ora project, which developed the proposed plan change to start achieving the Crown-iwi Vision and Strategy for the Waikato and Waipa rivers.
Late last month, the council passed a unanimous resolution to withdraw that part of the plan where Hauraki iwi authorities have an interest so that formal consultation could take place.
Hauraki iwi also have an interest in the area and as such the council has been considering consultation with the relevant Hauraki iwi.
The council and Hauraki have had some conversations on this matter.
However, in light of legal proceedings, the council has decided the best way to manage things is to withdraw the relevant area to allow for consultation with Hauraki to occur.
Part of the northeast Waikato is to be withdrawn from the Healthy Rivers proposal.