Sir Bob Jones writes: Recently, a shop tenancy changed in a modern 17-storey Auckland CBD office building owned by my company. The previous tenant had blocked off some of its window which we now intended putting back to the conventional shop front. At this stage, sit down with a stiff drink and accept my assurance I’m not making this up. For we were then informed by a planner my Auckland office uses for council dealings (which can be laborious) that under the new council rules, changes to a building’s appearance require resource consent and we would be subject to penalty if we simply put back the window.
Bob Jones on Auckland Council's cultural impact requirements
Other provisions in the Education and Training Bill that transfer powers to Maori and create de facto Maori quotas, as outlined in section 9(2):
- section 307(1)(c) power of Maori Advisory Committee to elect 1 member of the NZIST Board
- section 312(1) requires the NZIST to establish a Maori Advisory Committee
- section 312(3)(a) NZIST Council must consult with the Maori Advisory Committee
- education Councils acknowledge the principles of the Treaty in the exercise of their functions and powers
- the NZ Institute of Science and Technology collaborate with Maori and iwi partners to improve outcomes for Maori learners and Maori communities
- New Zealand Institute of Science and Technology: Schedule 13 requires that the Institute's governance, management and operations give effect to the Treaty of Waitangi etc; recognise that Maori are key actors in regional social, environmental, and economic development
De facto Maori quotas in employment rules
- section 258(2)(a) NZIST Council must include at least 1 "Maori"
- section 344(3)(b) Workforce Development Council must include representation by Maori employers
- section 128 a school Board's policies and practices must reflect cultural diversity. Presumably this governs Board's roles in the appointment of Principals, which may favour an applicant's ancestry over competence.
- section 380 the Tertiary Education Commission appoint members only after consultation with the Minister of Maori Development
- section 449(4)(b)(v) require the Minister to consider the collective understanding of partnership principles when considering appointments to the Teaching Council
- section 564(2)(d) general principles: schools and training providers to recognise the aims and aspirations of Maori, the employment requirements of Maori and the greater need of Maori in the education service
Under these provisions, all "Maori" are relegated to belonging to a generic minority "identity", stigmatised and patronised as requiring special attention regardless of their individual skills and unique personality.
Another woman said that koha payments are not recorded by Councils, even though they can be compulsory under the Councils' terms of operation.
Source: Ryan Wood: SunLive, 13 June, 2018: https://www.sunlive.co.nz/news/181863-koha-and-apartheid-discussed-at-mp-meeting.html
Numerous issues arise from the need for property owners to consult with tribal trusts, these include:
- What services do tribal trusts provide in order to receive "koha" from property owners?
- Are tribal trusts legally or de facto in a position to prevent property owners from obtaining Council consent for drilling water bores or other activities?
- How much do property owners pay iwi/hapu in koha, and are these koha recorded and tax deductible by property owners?
New Zealanders will pay more for their electricity and have less security of supply as a result of Maori spiritual arguments over the Resource Management Act, says National's Environment spokesman Nick Smith.
He is commenting on yesterday's Environment Court decision that will allow power generator Genesis to use water from the Whanganui River for only a further 10 years.
"It is political correctness gone mad when key decisions on infrastructure are made on the basis that diverting the Whanganui River for hydro development will adversely affect Maori spiritual beliefs and self-esteem," Dr Smith says.
"Maori families struggle to pay their power bills like everyone else, and keeping their children warm at a reasonable cost is far more important than any spiritual attachment to water hundreds of kilometres away.
"This decision is also concerning in that it invites Maori and Genesis to have 'a meeting of the minds' over the next 10 years to resolve the future use of the water. This is an invitation for backhanders, given the huge value of electricity and the leverage that Whanganui iwi will have over Genesis.
"It highlights the urgent need to reform the Resource Management Act. We have seen roads diverted for the taniwha and now electricity generation is being compromised because of Maori spirits.
"This will send a further shiver down the spine of the electricity industry, which cannot invest with any certainty with this length of consent," Dr Smith says.
Source: Scoop Independent News: Press Release New Zealand National Party, Tuesday 25 May 2004
From one of a myriad of examples of soft coersion:
“The signing of a Relationship Agreement between Genesis Energy and six Huntly Marae and the Huntly based Waahi Whaanui Trust was the culmination of five years of engagement and dialogue. The agreement records the parties’ intention to establish an enduring, positive and beneficial relationship which directly addresses the effects of the Huntly Power Station on local Marae, while recognising the Huntly Power Station is a key strategic asset for Genesis Energy and New Zealand. Through regular engagement and funding provided by Genesis Energy, the parties seek to deliver the broad objectives of developing a long term relationship, assisting Marae development, fostering cultural understanding, supporting the kaitiaki role of the Marae and enhancing the environment and supporting education and training initiatives”.
Source: Genesis Energy Ltd Annual Report 2010: https://www.genesisenergy.co.nz/documents/10180/14637/Annual+Report+2009-2010/92fce4ae-f2aa-4dff-925f-daaa05037b77 : Pg 5
Sir Bob Jones writes:
Recently, a shop tenancy changed in a modern 17-storey Auckland CBD office building owned by my company. The previous tenant had blocked off some of its window which we now intended putting back to the conventional shop front.
At this stage, sit down with a stiff drink and accept my assurance I’m not making this up.
For we were then informed by a planner my Auckland office uses for council dealings (which can be laborious) that under the new council rules, changes to a building’s appearance require resource consent and we would be subject to penalty if we simply put back the window.
If that’s not outrageously absurd enough, things then became truly Kafkaesque and illustrate why the Government, against ill-considered opposition parties’ objections, wishes to tone down the Resource Management Act.
For we were then told that under the new Draft Unitary Plan, not yet enacted, our building being within 50 metres of a designated Maori heritage site, we needed RMA approval (for a new shop window, for God’s sake), this instantly forthcoming at a cost of $4500 plus the approval of 13 iwi.
$4,500 for a new window!
The council refused to advise the addresses of these iwi outfits, yet added that without their consent, we can’t put back the window.
So the planner located then wrote to the 13 iwi, ranging from Taranaki to Whangarei.
Five replied stating they had no concerns while others said they were considering the matter, presumably calling huis to weigh up this window crisis.
One respondent bearing that fine old Maori name of Jeff Lee, representing something called Ngai Tai Ki Tamaki, contacted the planner.
Look up their website if you have tolerance for Maori “sacred footstep in the earth” guff, although it’s 100 per cent on the mark with its proclamation: “Our vision is only limited by our imagination.”
I’m sceptical about Mr Lee’s vision but have no doubt about his imagination, for after advising the planners verbally that no Cultural Impact Assessment Report was required for the window, he nevertheless asked them to consider it – brace yourselves – given his ancestors, centuries ago, gathered in the vicinity.
Lee then wrote, outlining his terms for “assessing the window’s cultural impact” which, he said, would take him “a total of six to eight hours”.
For this he sought $90 per hour plus GST and “travel expenses of 0.77c p/km.”
The council has designated 61 sites across Auckland and nominated 3600 others “of interest”. Undertake earthworks (swimming pool, building foundations, a shed etc) within 50m of a scheduled site and one must engage (pay) iwi.
None are of Stonehenge moment but instead claptrap such as “our ancestors beached canoes nearby” and the “feather-gathering” ilk.
A candidate for Mayor in 2016 should pledge to get rid of this nonsense, and they’ll win in a landslide. Shane Jones attacked the policy when he was an MP as political correctness gone mad or something like it. It does nothing for actual cultural heritage – it is simply a massive compliance cost.
Source: Sir Bob Jones “Bureaucrats Wallowing in Cultural Correctness”; New Zealand Herald, 9 September 2014: http://www.nzherald.co.nz/opinion/news/article.cfm?c_id=466&objectid=11321027
“the third point I want to make is a broader question. It is in respect of the Resource Management Act. At the weekend we saw reported what I think is a very sad development for New Zealand. This country takes great pride in being a corruption-free country, a country where things are done upfront.
We saw through the resource management process, a payment to Tainui of over $1 million. On exactly the same day the deal was drafted, an Environment Court Appeal was withdrawn. We are to believe that it is a co-incidence that the funding agreement just happens to expire on 1 January 2023, the day that the resource consent expires. This is a very sad reflection on Carter Holt Harvey. It is a sad reflection on Tainui. I believe that there are dozens of such cases. The only thing that is unique about this one is that it was reported because of the internal wrangles within Tainui” .
Dr Nick Smith, June 13 2001
1. New Zealand Hansard archives: Wednesday, June 13 2001; Dr Nick Smith: Hauraki Gulf Marine Park Amendment Bill: Third Reading http://www.vdig.net/hansard/archive.jsp?y=2001&m=06&d=13&o=70&p=74
“Greenpeace is concerned that an oil company with an exploration licence off Northland may be bribing iwi leaders to bolster support for their controversial drilling plans. Greenpeace has taken a picture of three executives from Norwegian oil giant Statoil meeting with an Iwi leader at a Wellington cafe.
Campaigner Mike Smith said it goes against the Norwegian government's protocols specifying that consultation must be done through appropriate procedures and representative institutions. He said it's an effort to win over individual iwi leaders rather than engaging collectively. "They've got clear instructions from the Norwegian government that they should only deal with institutions and mandated representatives, that's our main concern."
In some situations, consenting authorities and courts are required to deliberate on the effects of a matter on tribal “spiritual values”. The courts have accepted that ancestral land is land that has been "owned" by ancestors (i.e. it need not have remained in Māori ownership). Generally, once a relationship with Maori is recognised, consultation is imperative.
A Maori official “assisting” the Auckland Council preparing a billion dollar under-water rail tunnel told Council that the proposed route would trespass upon the territory of “horotiu” the taniwha (ancestral demon) The official noted to the Committee “there are always ways to placate taniwha”.
Round, D --- "Here Be Dragons?"  OtaLawRw 3; (2005) 11 Otago Law Review 31
See also: "Horotiu the Taniwha Stirs" David Round: https://www.nzcpr.com/horotiu-the-taniwha-stirs/
1998: Ngati Wai object to plans to take 2 million cu m of sand from the seabed off Pakiri Beach over 35 years.
2001: The tribe drops its objection one day before the hearing after accepting an offer from Kaipara Ltd to pay it 50c for every cubic metre of sand extracted up to $1 million.