Treaty settlement bills stoush could re-ignite controversy over Taranaki local govt Maori representation

A controversy over Maori representation in Taranaki that saw New Plymouth mayor Andrew Judd decide not to stand for re-election may be set to reignite.

Another councillor has put his hand up for the mayor job after Andrew Judd revealed he’s throwing in the towel after being abused. Source: 1 NEWS

It has come to light after New Zealand First's refusal to vote for some Treaty settlement bills that were set to go through Parliament unopposed this week.

The Government has called leader Winston Peters' actions appalling and petty after his decision to oppose the bill led the Government to cancel the final readings of five bills tomorrow.

Hundreds of iwi members from Taranaki, Manawatu and Northland were due to travel to Wellington to witness the bills pass.

It's all over the last minute cancellation of a special sitting of Parliament to pass five Treaty settlement bills. Source: 1 NEWS

But Mr Peters says one of his main objections is to a provision in one of the bills that allows for Maori representation on local councils.

The Taranaki Iwi Settlements Bill allows for three iwi members to be appointed to two different council committees, responsible for policy and planning and regulatory functions.

They will be entitled to the same remuneration and expenses as other members of the committee.

Mayor Andrew Judd has confirmed with ONE News the issue is the same one that has divided parts of the New Plymouth community and led him to decide to stand down.

His support for Maori representation saw his personal support slashed.

Mr Judd had travelled to Wellington to see the bills pass.

The second reading of the bills are being heard in Parliament today.

Raft of stricter dog control measures in proposed new law

Dogs and their owners are set to be subject to stricter controls.

The amnesty period has ended, and dog officers are being overwhelmed by thousands of illegal animals in the city.
Source: 1 NEWS

They will come alongside a new summer programme aimed at reducing the risk of dog attacks.

Associate Local Government Minister Louise Upston is providing Government funding of $850,000 to subsidise the neutering of high risk dogs.

"Neutering has been proven to reduce aggression in dogs which is important as we move into summer months and the school holidays," Ms Upston says.

She says statistics show dog bites are on the rise and children are over represented as victims of dog attacks.

Proposed law changes to be introduced next year include: Neutering all high-risk dogs; keeping high risk dogs in a fenced area; displaying signs at the front of properties to alert people of high-risk dogs; ensuring dangerous or menacing dogs wear collars identifying them as high-risk.

Animal shelters will also be prevented from adopting out high-risk dogs new owners.


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