JUMP TO MAIN CONTENT / HIGH CONTRAST VIEW
Consultation

Legislative Reform

Māori Trust Boards Amendment Act – guidance for transitioning to new financial accountability requirements

The passage of the Māori Purposes Bill 2011 has resulted in the enactment of four new Acts: The Māori Trust Boards Amendment Act 2011, the Māori Purposes Act 2011, Te Ture Whenua Māori Amendment Act 2011, and the Māori Fisheries Amendment Act 2011.

The Māori Trust Board Amendment Act 2011 entered into law on 16 September 2011. This Act amends the Māori Trust Boards Act 1955 to provide for direct accountability between Trust Boards and their beneficiaries. These amendments update financial reporting requirements for Māori Trust Boards in the following ways:

Old requirementsNew requirements
Māori Trust Boards must have their financial statements (including balance sheets) audited by the Auditor-GeneralMāori Trust Boards must have their financial statements audited no less than five months after the end of the financial year to which they relate through private audit
Māori Trust Boards must receive their audited accounts via the Minister of Māori Affairs, who is empowered to make comments on themEach Māori Trust Board must supply the Minister of Māori Affairs with a copy of its audited accounts for information only
Māori Trust Boards must send their annual budget and other financial information to the Minister of Māori Affairs for approvalEach Māori Trust Board must hold an Annual General Meeting to report to beneficiaries on its activities and plans for the future, including the presentation of annual accounts and budgets

When do these new financial accountability requirements take effect?

The Māori Trust Boards Amendment Act 2011 provides two options for Māori Trust Boards to transition to these new financial accountability requirements:

Option one: standard transition

The new financial accountability requirements apply automatically to each Māori Trust Board from the start date of the second accounting period of the Board that begins after the commencement date of the Amendment Act (16 September 2011).1

For example, if a Māori Trust Board’s balance date is 30 June, then the first accounting period of the Board beginning after the commencement date of the Amendment Act will be 1 July 2012 – 30 June 2013, and the transition date for the Board will be 1 July 2013 (the start of the second accounting period for the Board beginning after the Act’s commencement date).

Option two: early transition

However, the Amendment Act also gives Māori Trust Boards the option to transition to the new financial accountability requirements from the starting date of the first accounting period of the Board that begins after the commencement date of the Amendment Act (16 September 2011) 2.

For example, if a Māori Trust Board’s balance date is 30 June, then the first accounting period of the Board beginning after the commencement date of the Amendment Act will be 1 July 2012 – 30 June 2013. The transition date for the Board would therefore be 1 July 2012 (if the Board elected to transition early).

Māori Trust Boards wishing to transition to the new financial accountability requirements at the earlier of these two dates must inform Te Puni Kōkiri officials on or before Wednesday 21 December 2011, as this option requires the Governor-General to pass an Order in Council specifying the earlier transition date. Please contact Nancy Watters on 04 819 6758 or email wattn@tpk.govt.nz.

Audit implications

Once a Trust Board has transitioned to the new financial accountability requirements, the Auditor-General will cease to be its auditor, and each Trust Board will then need to engage its own auditor. However, the Auditor-General will still be the Trust Board’s auditor for any prior period financial statements that have not yet been audited.

A Trust Board will most likely find it difficult to engage their own auditor until prior financial period audits have been completed. Each Trust Board will therefore need to work cooperatively with its current auditor to clear the audits of any prior period financial statements.

The Amendment Act also requires all Trust Boards to hold a hui for the beneficiaries of the Trust Board no later than six months after the Board’s transition date, at which the Board must present its financial statements for the prior accounting period.3 This means that any outstanding prior period financial statements must be cleared (i.e. prepared, and audited by the Auditor-General’s appointed auditor) before that time.

A recent fact sheet on the amendments within the Māori Purposes Act (including the Māori Trust Boards Amendment Act) can be accessed here: http://www.tpk.govt.nz/en/in-print/our-publications/fact-sheets/the/

Section 9(1)(a) Māori Trust Boards Amendment Act 2011
Section 9(1)(b) Māori Trust Boards Amendment Act 2011
Section 9(5)(a)(iii) Māori Trust Boards Amendment Act 2011

The Māori Purposes Bill 2011: Four New Māori Affairs Acts

A Māori Purposes Bill is an omnibus bill amending legislation relating to Māori Affairs. The passage of the Māori Purposes Bill 2011 has resulted in the enactment of four new Acts: The Māori Trust Boards Amendment Act 2011, The Māori Purposes Act 2011, Te Ture Whenua Māori Amendment Act 2011 and the Māori Fisheries Amendment Act 2011. These Acts, which came into force on the 16 September 2011, make a range of important changes to legislation affecting Māori:

  • The Māori Trust Boards Amendment Act 2011 has amended the Māori Trust Boards Act 1955 to provide for direct accountability between Trust Boards and their beneficiaries;
  • The Māori Purposes Act 2011 removes Crown involvement in the administration of the Pukepuke Tangiora Estate and extends the distribution period for the Estate;
  • Te Ture Whenua Māori Amendment Act 2011 sets out minor technical changes to Te Ture Whenua Māori Act 1993 and the Māori Incorporations Constitution Regulations 1994; and
  • The Māori Fisheries Amendment Act 2011 has amended the Māori Fisheries Act 2004. It enables the transfer of Mandated Iwi Organisation status and fisheries settlement assets from an existing Mandated Iwi Organisation to another separate entity of the same iwi, and exempts this transfer from the protective provisions of the Māori Fisheries Act that would require their sale.

A copy of the Regulatory Impact Statement relating to the Māori Purposes Bill produced by Te Puni Kōkiri on 25 May 2010 can be found here.

Recent Legislative Reform

The following Acts have recently been passed by Parliament and come within the responsibility of the Māori Affairs portfolio.

Summary of the Acts

Whakarewarewa and Roto-a-Tamaheke Vesting Act 2009

This Act vests the fee simple estate in the Southern Arikikapakapa Reserve, the Whakarewarewa Thermal Springs Reserve and the Roto-a-Tamaheke Reserve, which are currently vested in the Crown, in a joint trust established by Ngāti Whakaue and Tūhourangi Ngāti Wāhiao, subject to certain terms and conditions.

Ngāti Whakaue, Tūhourangi Ngāti Wāhiao and the Te Pūmautanga trustees (on behalf of the Affiliate Te Arawa Iwi/Hapū) entered into a deed with the Crown, dated 5 August 2008, providing for the transfer of the Whakarewarewa Valley Land and the Roto-a-Tamaheke Reserve. This Act effects that transfer.

View the full text of the Whakarewarewa and Roto-a-Tamaheke Vesting Act.


The Māori Trustee Amendment Act 2009

The Māori Trustee Amendment Act came into force on 1 July 2009. The Māori Trustee is now a stand alone entity, separate from Te Puni Kōkiri. For information on the Māori Trustee, including questions and answers regarding the new legislation, go to www.maoritrustee.co.nz .

The Māori Trustee Amendment Act set up the Māori Trustee as a stand alone organisation included in the 4th schedule of the Public Finance Act 1989. The Act also made changes to the way in which payments on funds held in trust in the Common Fund are paid, so that they better reflect what the Māori Trustee earns in the investment of these funds.

View the full text of the Māori Trustee Act 1953.
 

Bill before Parliament

The following Bill is currently before Parliament and comes within the responsibility of the Māori Affairs portfolio.

Summary of the Bill

The Māori Trustee and Māori Development Amendment Bill

The Māori Trustee and Māori Development Amendment Bill (No 181-2) sets up a new statutory corporation with the title Māori Business Aotearoa New Zealand (MBANZ) to further Māori economic development by utilising resources available to Māori.

The Bill is currently on the order paper awaiting its second reading.

View the full text of the Māori Trustee and Māori Development Amendment Bill, as reported back by the Māori Affairs Committee.

View archive material on the Māori Trustee and Māori Development Amendment Bill as originally introduced.

Other Information

Contacts

For further information on any of the Bills or to make an enquiry, please email tpkbills@tpk.govt.nz.

Last modified: 17/03/2014