Co-Management, a step forward
Two heads are always better than one wouldn't you say?
A positive shift is occurring. Ngāti Mutunga are backing a proposal to co-manage Onaero Reserve, a Taranaki beachfront campground reserve which was returned to the iwi in their 2005 Treaty settlement. Currently, New Plymouth District Council is responsible for the administration of the recreation reserve, although the reserve is owned by the iwi.
Councillors are working through all the nuts and bolts and have yet to give the go-ahead, but a report this week to the iwi liaison committee Te Huinga Taumatua said work was already underway on the co-managment proposal. "The Onaero Reserve Management Plan will be a co-management plan with Te Rūnanga o Ngāti Mutunga," the report said. They said a working group in place, that has been meeting and working alongside council officers on the delivery of this co-management plan.
A full-colour draft 'concept masterplan' to upgrade the reserve features tree planting, paving, more coastal protective planting, carvings, and interpretive signs including the history of Ngāti Mutunga and the eight pā that were on the river.
This shared approach has been well received, and the hope is that other councils will follow suit, strengthening their bonds with iwi, working together to protect the areas history and environment.
For the full story by Craig Ashworth, Click here