26 Sep 2015

Hawke's Bay iwi signs $100m settlement deal

7:12 pm on 26 September 2015

The Crown has signed a deed of settlement with Hawke's Bay iwi Heretaunga Tamatea, settling its historical treaty claims.

Treaty Negotiations Minister Chris Finlayson

Treaty Negotiations Minister Chris Finlayson Photo: RNZ / Robin Martin

The agreement - marked by an official ceremony today at Te Aute College - includes an apology and redress for the Crown's past actions, including large-scale land purchasing that left the tribe virtually landless.

Heretaunga Tamatea has a population of 1600 and its area of interest extends from southern Napier to Takapau in central Hawke's Bay.

Almost all iwi voters said 'yes' to the deed, with 96.5 percent giving their consent earlier this month.

The Minister of Treaty Negotiations, Chris Finlayson, said the $100 million settlement gave the iwi a good base for a strong cultural and economic future.

"They know only too well how much land they lost in a couple of generations in the 1850s but they're determined to get on and do the very best they can with the money that will be provided in the settlement."

He said Heretaunga Tamatea would hold a further $5 million for investment in Te Aute College.

Negotiating body He Toa Takitini chair David Tipene Leach said the iwi would take an innovative approach to handling the main settlement funds.

That would include putting $50 million into a central fund, $25 million into a fund for regional initiatives, and giving the remaining $25 million dollars to its marae.