Thursday, September 15, 2016
Waitemata and Hauraki Gulf Forum Councillor Mike Lee says a “disturbing” Hauraki Gulf Forum meeting was held last week to discuss proposed changes to its membership and functions. “The forum has been captured by interests that are not necessarily conservation minded or from Auckland.
“There’s a domination of the Hauraki Gulf Forum essentially by Waikato farming interests and iwi interests from Coromandel that has not worked out that well,” he says. At present six of the 21 forum members represent mana whenua, but a review has recommended that eight of the 16 members should represent Maori tribal rights over the gulf.
The review report recommends that “particular attention is paid to treaty settlement processes and the Sea Change Tai Timu Tai Pari process” and that the forum has “co-governance” with equal numbers of mana whenua and “other” members.
A critic said that the group developing the marine spatial plan has a focus of economic, social and cultural gains and considers the environment only when it complements the other three.