The public galleries at Parliament were full on Tuesday with iwi representatives watching the first debate on three Treaty of Waitangi settlement bills.
They are: the Nga Wai o Maniapoto (Waipa River) Bill, the Ngati Pahauwera Treaty Claims Settlement Bill and the Ngati Porou Claims Settlement Bill.
The Maniapoto bill includes a co-management framework for the Waipa River, and the Ngati Pahauwera bill relates to that iwi's loss of land.
The Ngati Porou bill gives effect to the deed of settlement signed at the end of last year which includes financial redress of $110 million.
Maori Party co-leader Tariana Turia told Parliament it is a significant day for the three iwi and the bills represent a monumental milestone in their development.