2.4 Tangata Whenua Interests
Iwi interests are acknowledged in this project. In particular it is acknowledged that Tuwharetoa, Raukawa, Waikato and Maniapoto iwi are key stakeholders in matters relating to the rivers in the catchment. These interests relate to the relationship of Maori, their culture and traditions with ancestral land, water, Waahi tapu sites, valued flora and fauna and other Taonga.
During the consultation phase of Project Watershed a number of iwi groups submitted a concern that the Treaty interests of Maori may be prejudiced by rating systems and works within the catchment.
Council considers that nothing in the Waikato River Catchment Services programme and Funding Policy should prejudice iwi claims with the Crown regarding the river, its beds, its riverbanks, surrounding lands and tributaries.
Iwi representatives served on the liaison subcommittees during the informal consultation process. To facilitate ongoing consultation issues with iwi, Council has resolved to invite iwi representatives to form a Project Watershed Advisory Committee.