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Land Management
~ Whakahaere-ā-whenua


Regional Landcare Scheme

What is the Regional Landcare Scheme?

Funding assistance for projects that promote sustainable land use practises in Hawke's Bay and protect and enhance areas of ‘at risk’ biodiversity within the region.

The regional council recognises the effort and commitment that landowners/community are putting into addressing their environmental issues and the continuation of funding reflects this. The fund supports good soil conservation practices, biodiversity protection, riparian protection, wetland protection and enhancement, dune protection, coastal cliffs and estuaries with projects funded at up to 50% of their total costs.

Regional Landcare Scheme priorities

The grant applied for is specific to the current financial year. Applications are open from 1st February each year and projects must be completed and invoiced by 1st June the following year. To be eligible for consideration, projects will need to align with one or more of the following project classes and must have a project manager to oversee the project.

Priority Project Classes

Soil conservation

Targeting erodible soils on class 6-8 LUC through a variety of methods, e.g. soil stabilisation via tree planting, fencing to exclude stock, retiring land, erosion control forestry and other suitable means.

Water quality

Targeting projects which have a positive effect on water quality eg. Wetland enhancement, riparian planting, sediment dams, fencing to exclude stock (where not a requirement of legal document, company supply conditions ie. Fonterra, or other mechanism).


Targeting the restoration and protection of native bush & wetlands, e.g. fencing to exclude stock, riparian planting and pest control.


Targeting the restoration, protection and maintenance of dunes, coastal cliffs & estuaries e.g. the planting of spinifex and pingao for dune stabilisation, pest control and fencing to exclude stock/people.

Applied Research projects

Monitor farms or community projects within this region.

Who can apply?

Funding can be allocated to individuals and voluntary groups for eligible projects; this may include landowners, community and conservation groups, local Māori groups and schools.

Projects must be of long-term benefit to the local environment and show evidence of sustainable land management.

Projects designed for personal or commercial profit, are a requirement under the HB Regional Resource Management Plan or other instrument, or simply for aesthetic enhancement of a site, are not eligible for funding. Properties less than six hectares in size are not eligible to apply.

Projects must be consistent with the priority project classes and associated targets to qualify for consideration of funding.

NOTE: The RLS can contribute up to 50% of the total project cost (capped at $5000), depending on the project. The landowner must be able to provide the remainder of the cost through funding of their own, their time, other funding sources, or in-kind contributions such as donated materials. For QE11 covenants the funding is one third each from the farmer, Hawke's Bay Regional Council and the QE II National Trust.

Funding is not retrospective – the regional council will not pay for work done before funding is approved.

When can I apply?

Projects will be accepted for the current financial year from 1st February until 30th April each year, they will need to be assessed by a Land Management Advisor prior to submitting an application form. If you are interested in applying for the fund, please contact a council land management advisor to arrange your site visit.

Project approval process

This is a four stage process:

1.  Projects have their eligibility assessed via:

  • Information gained once a site assessment has been completed;
  • Ranking each project against the current priorities of the HBRC and the environmental benefits of the project.
  • RLS Budget for the associated financial year.

2. All current projects are ranked and the highest ranking projects approved until the fund is exhausted.

3. Letters will be sent to both approved and declined projects.

4.  Funding is approved once the applicant has received an approval letter from the Hawke's Bay Regional Council.

Projects without a signed project approval from HBRC have not had their funding approved.

Funding decisions made by the Hawke's Bay Regional Council are final with no rights of appeal or review. 

Help is available

If you require any further information, please do not hesitate to contact the land management team at the Hawke's Bay Regional Council. The team is able to help you assess your project's eligibility and is available to discuss the project with you on site.

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