A marae in Hawkes Bay says it's very close to securing a transfer of state houses, seven years after the community's proposal.
Te Aranga o Heretaunga Marae in Flaxmere, or Paharakeke, has proposed a project to the government to buy more than 300 state houses in the rohe.
The project, which is expected to be signed off at the end of the year, will make the marae trust the landlords and also look to sell the homes to whanau for affordable prices.
Chair Henare O'Keefe said it had been a very long time coming - but he could see the light at the end of the tunnel.
He said it was exciting that the pent-up frustration over the last seven years was finally subsiding.
Mr O'Keefe said Finance Minister Bill English had assured him that negotiations were on track.
He met with Mr English late last year.