Local councils will watch the progress of legislation introducing Stewart Island entry fees. A $5 figure has been mentioned.

Concerns have been raised about whether the bill sets a precedent for other councils to bring in similar measures as an alternative means of local funding.

Local Government New Zealand spokesman Mike Reid said: "You could do it at Waiheke [Island], Great Barrier Island maybe ... It would make a lot of sense if you could apply something similar at Chatham Islands, so I think they will be very excited to see this go through."