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Clark targets housing affordability

Written By: - Date published: 3:57 pm, February 12th, 2008 - 23 comments
Categories: housing, labour - Tags: ,

In her speech today, the Prime Minister announced a slate of government plans on housing affordability. New land will be freed up for housing but it will not a National-style free-for-all where land would be gobbled up by wealthy individuals and private developers for over-priced, up-scale housing that will exclude most people. Rather, areas will be found that are suitable for large-scale developments and the government will work with local government and not-for-profit groups to build communities with affordable housing.

A shared equity scheme in which the government puts up part of the purchase cost and gets partial equity in a house will assist people who have never owned a home buying a newly built house, such as one built in the developments. Low cost housing and more state houses will also open these new developments to ordinary New Zealanders.

Sustainability should be a priority for these new developments. Ecologically and economically-minded houses should be built around carefully planned public transport with park space and community resources designed to foster a sense of community, and commercial areas to provide employment. For too long, poorly planned sprawl has been permitted that creates soulless suburbs, congested roads, and denies too many the chance to own a house. It looks like this policy will confront the problem.

(Our mates at blogblog say: “Clark builds homes, Key supplies the vacuum“)

23 comments on “Clark targets housing affordability”

  1. Patrick 1

    This is really ambitious policy going into an election year. It isn’t reactionary “chuck em on a reality TV show” type stuff, but actually looking to improve the long-term outlook for our entire society.

    I really hope that this gets well publicised and continued support, it has so much potential.

  2. mike 2

    Brilliant idea, we’ll put this with other 11 shared equity announcements Labour have issued since 2004. http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PA0802/S00143.htm

  3. jay dawgg 3

    What happens if in order to build a sustainable house it actually places it beyond the ability of the average NZer on the average age.

    Shouldn’t we think this through properly before committing ourselves on the basis of slogans. Most ordinary people simply want a roof over their heads that they can call their own. They aren’t necessarily into sustainability.

  4. r0b 4

    It isn’t reactionary “chuck em on a reality TV show’ type stuff, but actually looking to improve the long-term outlook for our entire society.

    See also KiwiSaver, Cullen Fund, student loans, sustainability… Long term thinking about the big problems.

    There’s plenty of good stuff in the full transcript of the speech.

  5. Monty 5

    It certainly is good to free up land for housing development. Long overdue – but and it is a bit but…… the RMA needs an major overhaul to really progress this ambition along. And the plan does need to be ambitious – several thousand sections in all cities throughout NZ.

    Developers need to be encouraged to make land available for subdivisions – at present it is obstacle after obstacle. The RMA simply makes it too difficult to cover off the costs and the risks. On top of that the costs of construction need to be addressed as well and a good place to start will be the $15,000 it can cost for the consents to build a house.

    And Lastly – interference by the government beyond governance will simply mean that houses will continue to be unaffordable. The free market (I can hear the screams from the left as soon as free market is mentioned) is the best way of making houses affordable and increasing demand by shared equity or dollars added to deposits simply increases demand for that product.

    So Labour may do something about home affordability – but as usual with socialist policy is that it ends up having the opposite of the desired effect. Stupid economically illiterate socialists.

  6. BeShakey 6

    “Shouldn’t we think this through properly before committing ourselves on the basis of slogans. Most ordinary people simply want a roof over their heads that they can call their own. They aren’t necessarily into sustainability.”

    I don’t think that’s a sign it hasn’t been thought through properly, quite the opposite, the government is recognising the synergies between different policy areas. While you may be right about people simply wanting a roof over their heads, addressing sustainability is likely to reduce the whole of life costs of a house. In this respect the government can be seen to be leading a change in the way NZers think about their houses. I for one will be happy to see an end to the ‘build it as cheap as possible and leave the health/safety/long term financial issues for someone else’ culture. Also good to see the government leading, rather than simply following opinion polls.

  7. r0b 7

    The free market (I can hear the screams from the left as soon as free market is mentioned) is the best way of making houses affordable

    That’s an interesting claim Monty, and I wonder if you could elaborate. Because it seems to be that it was exactly the free market that has recently made houses unaffordable.

    Compared with say, the lefty big government “state house” programme that historically brought affordable housing to thousands.

  8. Phil 8

    “…areas will be found that are suitable for large-scale developments ”

    I can’t think of anywhere in Auckland or Wellington where that is even remotely practical.
    So Helen plans to solve a problem by ignoring the two geographical places where it’s most prevalent. Yep, great idea.

  9. Matthew Pilott 9

    Phil – Newlands will be touching on to Petone soon, the northern ‘burbs of Wellington would be about right if done properly. While you’re at it, Churton Park, meet Tawa! Can’t help with Auckland though 🙁

    WRT ‘sustainability’ being a mere slogan, let’s think that through, yeah?

    You install the most efficient heating methods for the house and water that are available. You insulate. You reduce water supply requirements. You give very good access to public transport. You have park areas and appropriate amenities.

    Then, five or ten years down the track, you have families that are better off because their house is warmer, cheaper to maintain, their area isn’t running dry (water wise 😉 ), they have access to public transport in the face of huge fuel costs, and have a vibrant community.

    Sure, sustainability is just some hippie eco-terrorist buzz-word right?

    I like the idea of land developed by N.F.P groups and local govt – the private sector wouldn’t be able to build cheap, sustainable and decent housing in heaven, let alone on earth.

  10. insider 10

    Phil

    Jump in a plane and you will see large tracts of land around Wellington. There are also large amounts of land in Manukau earmarked for development south of Botany

  11. dave 11

    A couple of things, the PM didnt announce the policy in her speech. THe Herald announced it with a cojpy fo trhe speech.

    Sounds like this policy, like the “keep kids at school” policy, was borrowed in part from the UK.

    Doesnt Labour have any new ideas?

  12. Simeon 12

    No Labour does not have any new ideas.

    A lot of it is recycled. (At least they set a good example on recycling)

    [lprent: don’t web-whore unless it is in context]

  13. AncientGeek 13

    mike:

    Brilliant idea, we’ll put this with other 11 shared equity announcements Labour have issued since 2004.

    I realize that the nats (who released that release you linked), have a habit of making policy without thinking.

    Labour does not. Of course they have looked at the idea, floated it around for comment, line up support across party lines, do pilot projects before committing large amounts of money, and generally act responsibly.

    Contrast this with the party that released that press release. In the absence of any clear policies, can we can expect this to be another dead rat that they will swallow in the months leading up to the election? They do not even have a housing policy on their website, and their Building and Construction policy area only features a photo of Nick Smith with a stupid grin… Just about sums up nationals policy making ability doesn’t it.

    cap: the GROSSGERG 🙂

  14. andy 14

    Otara, was supposed to be cheap housing. Did some stats today, cheapest house (3 bdrm) sold a few weeks ago 230K, ten per cent deposit is 23k. 25 years (2 year fixed) at 9.5% on $207,000 is 417.05 weekly. Otara is about as good as it gets for affordability in Auckland, and poorer families can’t carry that debt. This is the cheapest example i could find!

    I can’t see how this scheme is going to work, Aucland city council cancelled there cheap housing scheme. 9 million dollars to help under one hundred families. The numbers will never add up, the qualification means its a middle class subsidy, as they can only afford it.

    BeShakey I agree..

    Releasing land at the fringes is foolish as well, only the wealthy can afford the higher costs to commute, pay for infrastructure, transport for kids to schools…

    BTW: Ms Street was my high school english teacher..

  15. AncientGeek 15

    I’ve always been of the opinion that more efficient housing should not be that difficult or expensive to achieve. It is just that it is not a priority with housing developers.

    Think about it. Their standard operation is to build a house or apartment and sell it, preferably before they start or finish it. They seldom (if ever) retain an ownership stack. So there is no benefit to them in building it to a standard more than is required to pass the regulations. They don’t really consider the ongoing costs of maintenance or running costs beyond what is required to get a sucker to buy the place.

    But your average house or apartment is rated for 60 or more years. As every home owner knows, within 10-20 years the maintenance costs start getting substantial (painting, roofs, guttering, plumbing, etc). The running costs are there all of the time.

    I’d bet that you could make substantial improvements in both with a few minor and probably non-costly design modifications, if that was a priority. Suggestions? I have a few ideas – but you’d really want an architect, engineer, builder, or contractor to suggest them. I’ll bet they have more than a few easy suggestions.

    Labour is proposing taking an equity stake. That means that they’d get interested in the maintenance costs at least.

  16. slightlyrighty 16

    The simplest economic theory is the the concept of supply and demand setting the price.

    So what has affected demand in the housing market? Rampant growth in property values, coupled with easy access to credit have made investment properties stunningly attractive. The generous tax breaks available have made such investment easy, low risk and profitable. Labour could have addressed this but a middle class sitting on artificially high property values is a happy middle class.

    On the supply side, the RMA and government compliance costs have gone a long way to making low cost housing uneconomic to produce consigning the lower socio economic demographic to a position where home ownership is unavailable to them. As the middle and upper class avail themselves of the largesse to the Labour Government continual lack of action in allowing the taxpayer to subsidise property investment, the supply of housing is restricted, while the supply of the needed housing is dwindling.

    Of course this situation cannot continue. Headlines this morning point to the biggest housing slump in 20 years. We may see a self correction. How will supply and demand affect the market in the next few years? My predictions are for the Baby Boomers, as they hit retirement age, will wish to realise the cash. we will see aglut of housing supply causing a drop in pricing at the mid range in the market, which will drive all pricing down.

    Subsequently, banks will be unwilling to loan at the levels seen in the last 6 years as porperty values are falling, which may in turn restrict demand a bit further, tending prices down.

    and Labour will have nothing to do with the solution to housing affordability, but a band of homeowners will be left with a mortgage debt higher than the value of the security, and that will be labours fault.

  17. insider 17

    It’s a bit rich for HC to be all concerned about affordability when here building act takes a lot of the blame.

    Labour have increased costs significantly for new homes through such things as increased obligations on insulation and double glazing. Every new home in NZ will now cost 5-10k more as a result. Doesn;t matter whether you want it or need it, you will be forced to install it (also impacts major renovations I believe).

    I don’t mind regulation per se but was there any cut in other regs to compensate? I suspect not. It is too easy for a regulator to push unnecessary costs onto a whole population to cover either their butts or the small risks an issue hypothetically might cause down the line.

    The other thing I have heard hitting home costs is leaky buildings. COuncils are running scared and overcompensating on regs and I;ve heard similar for earthquake proofing, which is increasing the volume of steel required.

    Sure we have earthquakes, but we don’t have them that often and even when we have, most timber framed homes have survived.

    We seem to have moved to a highly prescriptive system rahter than an outcomes based one which is a shame.

  18. Tane 18

    such things as increased obligations on insulation and double glazing

    These are good things. They reduce energy bills, take pressure of energy generation and reduce New Zealand’s carbon footprint. And at a very low cost.

    Every new home in NZ will now cost 5-10k more as a result.

    That doesn’t account for the 80% increase in house prices in recent years. What’s $5-10k on a $500k house? 1%? 2%?

  19. insider 19

    Sorry Tane but that is on every house – ie the physical part not the total property value. So on a $250k property that is quite a significant impact given the building will perhaps be only 200k of that. Most $500k houses will have high land values (I live in one and the rating valuation was done in December and I think the land is valued at about $200k which is probably a bit low judging by section prices in the area).

    Also the numbers for the claimed savings just don’t stack up. The policy was justified on claimed savings that don’t exist in reality. Very similar to the govt criticism of the BRT report on emissions trading costs – fanciful scenarios that don’t match reality. It’s really just another carbon tax. The poorest get hit hardest.

    Heating is about 1/3 of your power bill. The measures claimed to save up to 1/3 of heating costs. An average bill according to the govt is 8000kwh/yr and it costs about 21c/kwh. So that equals $1680 a year. One third of one third is a bit less than $200 a year. So for an outlay of 5-10k you will ‘save’ up to $200 with a minimum payback of 25 years (I suspect many will have replaced their windows by then).

    The evidence from overseas is that they don’t reduce pressure on energy consumption. They either have no impact or people use more. This is a well recognised phenomenon in NZ and overseas.

  20. slightlyrighty 20

    Tane.

    Granted, insulation in homes is a good thing and do not increase the overall in and of itself to any great degree, but the ongoing increase in compliance costs had led to compliance becoming an industry in its own right adding a huge cost to building.

    Just to subdivide a section could cost you 50k before a sod of eath is even turned in some parts of NZ.

    And to your assertion of whats is 5-10 k on a 500 k house? The average NZer cannot afford a 500k house. We need more houses in the 250-350k range but these compliance costs are making these houses uneconomic to build. 5-10k for double glazing as a percentage of 350k is much higher.

    So lets add 5k to the 50k compliance cost. What is 55k as a percentage of 350k? Is 15.7% of a house cost taken up in compliance costs acceptable when property is sundivided? How bad is it getting?
    It is now getting to the point where a homeowner may need council consent to change the putty in the window.

  21. insider 21

    Slightly

    I heard the same putty story. I think it was a joke comment by a councillor in the Hutt rather than a realistic policy

  22. slightlyrighty 22

    Insider,

    I have contacts at BOINZ, The building officails institute on NZ, and I am of the understanding that that was a valid consequent of legislation considered.

  23. dave 23

    Do any of you guys own your own home? Nah ,thought not. Are you oin 70K? Then you may be in with a chance with Labours policy. You may yet own a house.

    A couple would need to earn more than the average $68,000 household income to meet the mortgage on an affordable home at the Government’s flagship Hobsonville housing development. ( $300k plus)

    Mortgage calculators show repayments on a 30-year 90 percent loan at a current two-year fixed interest rate of 9.35 percent would be $603 a week before rates and insurance. At a rate of 8 percent, repayments would be [$27.716 a year].

    What a joke. Affordable housing, yeah right.

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  • More odious debt
    The media over the last few days has been full of stories about WINZ and odious debt. But the worst one is this:A woman with eight children living in emergency housing is facing a debt to Work and Income of… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • Additional Harbour Crossing ill-considered and over-rushed.
    We are increasingly concerned that Auckland is in the middle of very poor process where by far the nation’s biggest ever infrastructure project is being forced along and at ill-considered speed without anything like the level of public participation nor detailed… ...
    Transport BlogBy Patrick Reynolds
    2 days ago
  • Additional Harbour Crossing ill-considered and over-rushed.
    We are increasingly concerned that Auckland is in the middle of very poor process where by far the nation’s biggest ever infrastructure project is being forced along and at ill-considered speed without anything like the level of public participation nor detailed… ...
    Transport BlogBy Patrick Reynolds
    2 days ago
  • Tinder and 3nder are officially at war
    Your right to swipe for threesomes is under threat.    Some clean-cut millennials enjoying the 3nder afterglow. 1232RF Those for whom three is the magic sex-number should know that one's right to swipe one's way into a six-limb circus is… ...
    2 days ago
  • Weekly Listening: Die Antwoord, Joey Purp, King Kapisi and more
    A showcase of some of the best new music releases from the past week.   Joey Purp - GIRLS @ Feat. Chance The Rapper This track might be the catchiest three minutes and 32 seconds to hit your ears… ...
    2 days ago
  • Some big news, for me
    Two pieces of news that are kind of a big deal, for me. Firstly, I’m ditching my landline! I’m not a student and I’m not in a low income band, so make of that what you will. Secondly, after 10… ...
    GrumpollieBy Andrew
    2 days ago
  • Start as you mean to go on
    The GCSB has a new director: His family tease him by calling him Johnny English. He has a 3000-strong record collection – not classical, but some “out there” 1980s indie rock. Andrew Hampton is also a government fix-it man –… ...
    DimPostBy danylmc
    2 days ago
  • Start as you mean to go on
    The GCSB has a new director: His family tease him by calling him Johnny English. He has a 3000-strong record collection – not classical, but some “out there” 1980s indie rock. Andrew Hampton is also a government fix-it man –… ...
    DimPostBy danylmc
    2 days ago
  • Polity: Mike’s minute: Mike’s maths!
    Today, media ubiquity Mike Hosking took to nzherald.co.nz to vent his frustration at Labour for suggesting that it would re-convene the same Tax Working Group first used by National. He was clearly very upset.For Mike, Auckland’s housing crisis is a… ...
    2 days ago
  • Polity: Mike’s minute: Mike’s maths!
    Today, media ubiquity Mike Hosking took to nzherald.co.nz to vent his frustration at Labour for suggesting that it would re-convene the same Tax Working Group first used by National. He was clearly very upset.For Mike, Auckland’s housing crisis is a… ...
    2 days ago
  • Denise Roche: What I’m looking for in Budget 2016 Pt II
    Aotearoa’s new New Zealanders,  come to our country in vulnerable position: – often away from the culture, communities and families they know, sometimes in neighbourhoods without familiar faces and often encountering barriers to employment. With net migration at 50,000+ a… ...
    frogblogBy Denise Roche
    2 days ago
  • Helter smelter deja vu: Tiwai Point uncertainty stalls NZ renewables
    Simon Johnson looks at how New Zealand Aluminium Smelter Limited is behind the Meridian/Genesis deal keeping the Huntly Thermal Power Station burning coal as the threat of closing the Tiwai Point smelter is stalling the construction of consented renewable energy… ...
    Hot TopicBy Mr February
    2 days ago
  • Helter smelter deja vu: Tiwai Point uncertainty stalls NZ renewables
    Simon Johnson looks at how New Zealand Aluminium Smelter Limited is behind the Meridian/Genesis deal keeping the Huntly Thermal Power Station burning coal as the threat of closing the Tiwai Point smelter is stalling the construction of consented renewable energy… ...
    Hot TopicBy Mr February
    2 days ago
  • Equal Pay and Budget 2016
    The last few years we’ve seen equal pay for women flagged as an undefined risk in the budget. This year we should expect to see this, as well as budgeted money to deliver equal pay to caregivers and funding for,… ...
    frogblogBy Jan Logie
    2 days ago
  • Equal Pay and Budget 2016
    The last few years we’ve seen equal pay for women flagged as an undefined risk in the budget. This year we should expect to see this, as well as budgeted money to deliver equal pay to caregivers and funding for,… ...
    frogblogBy Jan Logie
    2 days ago
  • Hard News: This. Is. Crazy.
    It's eight days since the Prime Minister airily assured Guyon Espiner on Morning Report that "in my experience with Work and Income", homeless people could go along to their local office and get sorted with some emergency housing.We now know… ...
    2 days ago
  • Hard News: This. Is. Crazy.
    It's eight days since the Prime Minister airily assured Guyon Espiner on Morning Report that "in my experience with Work and Income", homeless people could go along to their local office and get sorted with some emergency housing.We now know… ...
    2 days ago
  • A great Budget would
    A great Budget would embrace the challenge of our polluted rivers and move the money away from justifying the status quo water rules into cleaning up waterways. A great Budget would take the Ministry for the Environment freshwater budget and… ...
    frogblogBy Catherine Delahunty
    2 days ago
  • Smarter, Better, Cleaner, Stronger
    This Thursday Bill English will deliver his eighth Budget. Will it continue the trend of previous National budgets, making tertiary education less affordable, putting only token funds into innovation, and subsidising polluters? Budgets aren’t what they used to be. Once… ...
    frogblogBy Gareth Hughes
    2 days ago
  • What we are expected to believe
    In recent months I have become increasingly concerned at the state of bullshit in this country. Bullshit, as Harry Frankfurt famously wrote, is distinguished not by its intentionally negative truth value (those are lies) but its absence of intentional truth… ...
    2 days ago
  • The end of Auckland’s old growth model
    The New Zealand Council for Infrastructure Development’s public shark-jumping exercise the other week got me thinking. While their flagship policy of a new megabillion eastern tunnel project is a bit mad, their report does a reasonable job of diagnosing one… ...
    Transport BlogBy Peter Nunns
    2 days ago
  • The end of Auckland’s old growth model
    The New Zealand Council for Infrastructure Development’s public shark-jumping exercise the other week got me thinking. While their flagship policy of a new megabillion eastern tunnel project is a bit mad, their report does a reasonable job of diagnosing one… ...
    Transport BlogBy Peter Nunns
    2 days ago
  • Why are whistleblowers being prosecuted as spies?
    Whistleblowers are a ‘check’ on government, corporate or organisational secrecy and malfeasance. I recently read Tim Shipman’s preview of the Chilcot report into the origins of the Tony Blair-led UK engagement in the US’s invasion of Iraq, which looked at… ...
    The PaepaeBy Peter Aranyi
    2 days ago
  • Spend and Tax
    As a general rule, New Zealanders want more public spending. Surveys (such as the 2014 Election Survey) show consistent support for increases in spending, particularly in the areas of health, education, housing, law enforcement, public transport and the environment (in… ...
    Briefing PapersBy Brian Easton
    2 days ago
  • The birth place of the artist
    It may not be the best reason to fund the arts. It’s certainly not the only one. But travelling to the small city of Rovereto, at the feet of the Italian dolomites, reminded me of the lasting influence that a… ...
    Bat bean beamBy Giovanni Tiso
    2 days ago

  • Minister won’t fess up on wrong figures
    The Minister of Health was caught out telling porkies in Parliament today when he was asked about the number of people getting access to mental health and addiction services, says Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King. ...
    12 hours ago
  • Budget 2016 and our LGBTQI communities
    LGBTI people make up about a tenth of our population, and our communities face a unique set of needs and challenges. These challenges are caused or exacerbated by discrimination, invisibility and barriers to appropriate support. We have a long way… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    13 hours ago
  • Budget 2016 and our LGBTQI communities
    LGBTI people make up about a tenth of our population, and our communities face a unique set of needs and challenges. These challenges are caused or exacerbated by discrimination, invisibility and barriers to appropriate support. We have a long way… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    13 hours ago
  • Scrambled announcement policy on the hoof
    Paula Bennett’s scrambled desperate announcement that she will pay homeless people to move to the regions is just the latest evidence of the disarray this Government’s housing policy is in, Leader of the Opposition Andrew Little says. “This is policy… ...
    13 hours ago
  • Police Minister admits resolution rates fall short of expectation
    Police Minister Judith Collins has admitted in Parliament current burglary resolution rates are not meeting the expectations of our communities, says Labour’s Police spokesman Stuart Nash “Out of 284 police stations in New Zealand in 2015, 24 stations recorded zero… ...
    14 hours ago
  • Mojo Mathers: A better deal for animals in Budget 2016
    Currently we are failing animals in NZ. On the face of it farmed and domestic animals in this country have strong legal protection from abuse, cruelty and neglect. In reality it seems that only the very worst, most extreme cases… ...
    GreensBy Mojo Mathers
    14 hours ago
  • Metiria Turei: What we need from Budget 2016
    Every family deserves a warm decent home.  Everyone believes that. This housing crisis is just the latest consequence of a Government who puts the interests of the few wealthy people above the needs of NZ families.  Families are doing it… ...
    GreensBy Metiria Turei
    16 hours ago
  • Dairy exports fall of 11%: Budget action on diversification needed
    Dairy exports have fallen 11 per cent compared to this time last year, a fall of almost $1.5b, showing the Government must take clear action on diversifying the economy in tomorrow’s Budget, says Labour’s Trade and Export Growth spokesperson David… ...
    16 hours ago
  • Investors driving families out of homes in South and West Auckland
    Investors cashing in on skyrocketing Auckland house prices are driving families out of homes in South and West Auckland and causing homeownership rates in some of our poorest suburbs to plummet, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “New analysis shows… ...
    19 hours ago
  • Budget must deliver on paid parental leave
    Budget 2016 must deliver 26 weeks paid parental leave by April 2018 – anything less will be short-changing families, says Labour MP Sue Moroney. “My Bill which is before Parliament this afternoon has majority support and does just that. I… ...
    19 hours ago
  • Key’s “brain fart” on tax cuts news to English
    John Key didn’t tell his own Finance Minister he was about to go on radio and announce he wanted $3b of tax cuts, just days after Bill English ruled them out, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “In Parliament today… ...
    2 days ago
  • What I’m looking for in Budget 2016 – A better start for our tamariki
    Ensuring the best start for our tamariki is a priority for me in everything I do. And so in Budget 2016, my first budget as an MP, I looking for the Government to make a real investment in the wellbeing… ...
    GreensBy Marama Davidson
    2 days ago
  • What I’m looking for in Budget 2016 – A better start for our tamariki
    Ensuring the best start for our tamariki is a priority for me in everything I do. And so in Budget 2016, my first budget as an MP, I looking for the Government to make a real investment in the wellbeing… ...
    GreensBy Marama Davidson
    2 days ago
  • Denise Roche: What I’m looking for in Budget 2016 Pt II
    Aotearoa’s new New Zealanders,  come to our country in vulnerable position: – often away from the culture, communities and families they know, sometimes in neighbourhoods without familiar faces and often encountering barriers to employment. With net migration at 50,000+ a… ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche
    2 days ago
  • Equal Pay and Budget 2016
    The last few years we’ve seen equal pay for women flagged as an undefined risk in the budget. This year we should expect to see this, as well as budgeted money to deliver equal pay to caregivers and funding for,… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    2 days ago
  • Equal Pay and Budget 2016
    The last few years we’ve seen equal pay for women flagged as an undefined risk in the budget. This year we should expect to see this, as well as budgeted money to deliver equal pay to caregivers and funding for,… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    2 days ago
  • A great Budget would
    A great Budget would embrace the challenge of our polluted rivers and move the money away from justifying the status quo water rules into cleaning up waterways. A great Budget would take the Ministry for the Environment freshwater budget and… ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty
    2 days ago
  • Budget building materials policy backfires
    On the eve of this year’s Budget official figures show Nick Smith’s Budget 2014 centrepiece to reduce the cost of building materials has backfired, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment officials have spent the… ...
    2 days ago
  • Smarter, Better, Cleaner, Stronger
    This Thursday Bill English will deliver his eighth Budget. Will it continue the trend of previous National budgets, making tertiary education less affordable, putting only token funds into innovation, and subsidising polluters? Budgets aren’t what they used to be. Once… ...
    GreensBy Gareth Hughes
    2 days ago
  • Govt must come clean on tax cuts in Budget
    National is making a mockery of the Budget process by dangling the promise of tax cuts but failing to include them in the Budget, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “National’s tax cut promises have turned into a farce. One… ...
    3 days ago
  • Grant Robertson Pre-Budget Speech
    Today I want to talk about success. As we know success can come in many different forms, from the fact you all made it here at such an early hour on a Monday, for which I am very grateful, to… ...
    3 days ago
  • Budget must deliver for middle New Zealand
    The Government must ensure next week’s Budget stops the squeeze on middle New Zealand and delivers shared prosperity for all New Zealanders, Leader of the Opposition Andrew Little says. The call follows new research commissioned by Labour that shows working… ...
    4 days ago
  • Our housing emergency – why we have to act
    Marama and Metiria at Homes Not Cars launch On Thursday, Metiria Turei announced the Green Party’s plan to start addressing the emergency housing crisis facing our country. Too many people are without homes right now – homeless. It is the… ...
    GreensBy Marama Davidson
    5 days ago
  • Will funding boost for sexual violence services go to the right places?
    This week the Government announced $46million for sexual violence services. This announcement was a result of decades of work by advocates and everyone who submitted to the Select Committee inquiry into funding for sexual violence services that I initiated with… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    6 days ago
  • Will funding boost for sexual violence services go to the right places?
    This week the Government announced $46million for sexual violence services. This announcement was a result of decades of work by advocates and everyone who submitted to the Select Committee inquiry into funding for sexual violence services that I initiated with… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    6 days ago
  • Denise Roche – What I’m looking for in this year’s Budget
    Two of the things I’ll be looking for in the Budget next week are more funding for refugees and for our arts and culture sector. More funding for refugees I’m a strong supporter of the #DoubleTheQuota campaign and its goals… ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche
    6 days ago
  • Denise Roche – What I’m looking for in this year’s Budget
    Two of the things I’ll be looking for in the Budget next week are more funding for refugees and for our arts and culture sector. More funding for refugees I’m a strong supporter of the #DoubleTheQuota campaign and its goals… ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche
    6 days ago
  • Car rego victims must get a refund
    Motorists who have been overcharged for their car registration should get a refund, says Labour’s Transport spokesperson Sue Moroney.  “Minister Nikki Kaye’s ‘faulty risk’ rating scheme has blown up in her face with over 170 different models of car having… ...
    6 days ago
  • Council statement shows they just don’t get it
    The Auckland Council’s statement today shows they don’t understand the problems created by the urban growth boundary, says Labour’s housing spokesperson Phil Twyford.  “I have been the first to defend the Auckland City Council when Bill English has been blaming… ...
    6 days ago
  • Inspecting electronic devices a potential privacy threat
    Labour is expressing concern for New Zealanders’ privacy rights as the Government signals Customs will have the power to inspect electronic devices coming across the border, says Labour’s Customs Spokesperson Rino Tirikatene. “We agree that customs officers should have the… ...
    6 days ago
  • The Price of Water
    This week I hosted a public meeting at EIT in Hawkes Bay to discuss how we might put a price on the commercial use of water, so that water may be valued and treated more sustainably. I invited a… ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty
    6 days ago
  • Caption It NZ!
    Today I received a petition from the NZ Captioning Working Group urging the government to legislate for accessibility via closed captioning for deaf and hard of hearing New Zealanders. It was timely because today is the fifth Global Accessibility Awareness… ...
    GreensBy Mojo Mathers
    7 days ago
  • Older Kiwis to miss out on electives
    The Government is not doing enough elective surgery to keep up with New Zealand’s ageing population, says Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King.  “It’s damning that the targeted national intervention rate for cataract and knee and hip surgery is the same… ...
    7 days ago
  • Most principals say their college is underfunded
    The Government must substantially increase funding for secondary schools in next week’s Budget after a new survey found 86 per cent of principals consider their college under-resourced, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “Just 14 per cent of secondary principals… ...
    7 days ago
  • Bill English and Nick Smith on different pages
    The Government’s support for Labour’s policy to remove the Auckland urban growth boundary is good news, but National needs to clarify its position, Labour’s Housing and Auckland Issues spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “The Acting Prime Minister has acknowledged our position… ...
    7 days ago
  • Bill English and Nick Smith on different pages
    The Government’s support for Labour’s policy to remove the Auckland urban growth boundary is good news, but National needs to clarify its position, Labour’s Housing and Auckland Issues spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “The Acting Prime Minister has acknowledged our position… ...
    7 days ago
  • Labour calls for independent inquiry into illegal fish dumping
    The Labour Party is reiterating its call for an independent inquiry into New Zealand’s fishing industry after two reports revealed the Ministry for Primary Industries turned a blind eye to widespread fish dumping in New Zealand waters, says Labour’s Fisheries… ...
    7 days ago
  • Mt Karangahake and Newcrest Mining
    On Wednesday and Sunday of last week the local residents of the Karangahake mountain in the Karangahake gorge of Hauraki/Coromandel peacefully protested against a gold mining drill rig on private land adjacent to the DOC land. The drilling rig was… ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty
    1 week ago
  • Robbing Aucklanders to pay Rio Tinto
    New Zealand’s national electricity grid stretches the length of the country and contains some 11,803 kilometres of high-voltage lines and 178 substations. It wouldn’t make sense for competing power companies to duplicate and build their own expensive electricity transmission system… ...
    GreensBy Gareth Hughes
    1 week ago
  • Government should abolish Auckland urban growth boundary
    The Government should rule out any possibility of an urban growth boundary in Auckland Council’s Unitary Plan if it is serious about fixing the housing crisis, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “Over 25 years the urban growth boundary hasn’t… ...
    1 week ago
  • Kiwis don’t want iPads for Land deals
     It is outrageous that schools are relying on money and iPads from foreign land investors to meet the learning needs of their students, says Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins.  “Several OIO land applications by offshore investors have claimed that without… ...
    1 week ago
  • Homelessness – National has failed all of us
    A young South Auckland Māori woman recently tried to get hold of me around midnight. I missed her call. The woman wanted me to know the sharp reality facing too many families looking for a stable place to live. Things… ...
    GreensBy Marama Davidson
    1 week ago
  • Moko case should never have been manslaughter deal
    Confirmation again yesterday that the manslaughter charge in the Moko Rangitoheriri case was a deal done by the Crown Prosecution Service is justifiably the cause of outrage, says Labour’s Children’s spokesperson Jacinda Ardern.“This should never have been a case where… ...
    1 week ago
  • Overseas investor funds school’s digital devices
    The Government must address the inequality laptops and tablets in classrooms are causing after a Queenstown school was forced to use a donation from an overseas investor to get their students digital devices, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins. “Documents obtained… ...
    1 week ago
  • Child Youth and Family Review and Domestic Violence
    This Government has consistently failed to recognise the links between Child Youth and Family Services (CYFS) and intimate partner violence. For me, the recent review of CYFS has highlighted this misunderstanding of the dynamics of domestic violence and its impacts… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    1 week ago
  • Child Youth and Family Review and Domestic Violence
    This Government has consistently failed to recognise the links between Child Youth and Family Services (CYFS) and intimate partner violence. For me, the recent review of CYFS has highlighted this misunderstanding of the dynamics of domestic violence and its impacts… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    1 week ago
  • Canterbury rebuild: How wood is a better choice for the new city
    It was interesting to attend the ForestWood Conference in Auckland recently and learn about the extent of innovation in the wood processing and manufacturing sector. The forestry sector may be New Zealand’s third largest export earner, but raw logs make… ...
    GreensBy Eugenie Sage
    1 week ago
  • Canterbury rebuild: How wood is a better choice for the new city
    It was interesting to attend the ForestWood Conference in Auckland recently and learn about the extent of innovation in the wood processing and manufacturing sector. The forestry sector may be New Zealand’s third largest export earner, but raw logs make… ...
    GreensBy Eugenie Sage
    1 week ago
  • Key plucks $3b out of thin air – reckless and irresponsible
    John Key refuses to give up on his dream of tax cuts to the wealthy, despite being shot down by Bill English, and is resorting to plucking numbers out of thin air, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “On radio… ...
    1 week ago
  • John Key woefully out of touch on homelessness
    John Key is completely out of touch if he thinks desperate South Auckland families forced to live in cars can simply go to Work and Income for help, Opposition Leader Andrew Little says. “Many of these families are working and… ...
    1 week ago

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