The purpose of this Bill is to ensure that former owners of Māori or general land taken or acquired by the Crown for the purposes of a public work are given the first right of refusal to purchase that land where the Crown no longer requires it for the public work for which it was originally taken and/or acquired. The Bill also provides for solatium payments to be made for loss of land and/or opportunities associated with the use of that land where land was acquired or alienated for a public works use for which it was not actually used. Where the former owners of the land are deceased, these rights may be exercised by their descendants.
Māori land has both been taken under the Public Works Act 1981 for a specific purpose and/or purchased by the Crown for a specific purpose. In most instances land sold to the Crown for a specific purpose is only sold by Māori for that purpose and for no other. It is with that principle in mind that this Bill proposes land sold to the Crown should be offered back to the original owners and/or their descendants.
Clause 1 is the Title.
Clause 2 provides for the Bill to come into force on the day after the date on which it receives the Royal assent.
Clause 3 indicates that the principal Act being amended is the Public Works Act 1981.
Clause 4 explains the purpose of the Bill.
Clause 5 makes the changes required to ensure that the original owners or their successors of any land acquired for a public work are given first right of refusal on that land where it is no longer required for the public work for which it was acquired.
Clause 6 provides for solatium payments to be made for loss of land and/or opportunities associated with the use of that land where land was acquired or alienated for a public works use for which it was not actually used.
Clause 7 makes consequential amendments required to support the purpose of this Bill.