No. 222.—Petition of Hugh Thomas and 29 Others.
Petitioners state that they are tenants on the Native reserve at Arahura; that when they got possession of the land it was covered with dense bush; that they have spent £20 to £50 per acre in clearing it, in hope of making a permanent home for their children; that "The Native Reserves Act, 1882," makes no provision for the renewal of their leases, though it was well understood that at the expiry of their term there would be a ronewal at reasonable rents; and that the passing of the Act named has deprived them of their property in the land. Petitioners pray that they should either receive compensation for their improvements, or should have their leases at the expiry of the present term renewed at present rentals.page 6
I am directed to report as follows:—
That a similar petition (No. 47) from residents in the Motueka District has already been reported upon by the Committee. The Committee recommends the subject to the earnest attention of Government, with a view to such legislation as may cover just claims.