Governance of Te Urewera
The Te Urewera Act replaces the Te Urewera National Parks Act for the governance and management of Te Urewera. The key principles of the new Act are:
Te Urewera ceases to be a national park and is vested in itself as its own legal identity. Te Urewera will own itself in perpetuity with the Board to speak as its voice to provide governance and management in accordance with the principles of the Act.
The purpose of the Act is to establish and preserve in perpetuity a legal identity and protected status for Te Urewera for its intrinsic worth, its distinctive natural and cultural values, the integrity of those values, and for its national importance, and in particular to –
1. Strengthen and maintain the connection between Tūhoe and Te Urewera; and
2. Preserve as far as possible the natural features and beauty of Te Urewera, the integrity of its indigenous ecological systems and biodiversity, and its historical and cultural heritage; and
3. Provide for Te Urewera as a place for public use and enjoyment, for recreation, learning, and spiritual reflection, and as an inspiration for all.
The Te Urewera Board will be responsible for producing the management plan and a statement of priorities in accordance with the objectives of the Act.
The make-up of the Te Urewera Board
Te Urewera will be governed by a Board of 4 Crown and 4 Tūhoe representatives, changing after 3 years to 3 Crown and 6 Tūhoe members. The Ministers of Treaty of Waitangi Negotiations and the Minister of Conservation appoints the Crown representatives, as agreed to by Tūhoe. The inaugural Tūhoe representatives are chosen by the Te Uru Taumatua Board, in future all Tūhoe representatives will be appointed by the Tūhoe Tribals. The chair position of the Board will be a Tūhoe person, in perpetuity. Following the three year rotation, the next Crown representatives will be selected by the Minister of Conservation solely.