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Cunliffe’s not so shabby question: broadband costs

Written By: - Date published: 12:57 pm, September 18th, 2013 - 39 comments
Categories: capitalism, david cunliffe, infrastructure, john key, news, Steven Joyce, telecommunications, tv - Tags:

The MSM, especially TV One and TV 3′s 6pm news, reported on Cunliffe stumbling over the word Chorus in his first question yesterday to PM Key.

They failed to significantly report on the substance of Cunliffe’s question, that exposes Key’s prevarications on the costs to Kiwis of his Ultrafast Broadband plan.

Cunliffe lays out the importance of his question in a press release:

Kiwis will pay $150 more a year for their broadband than they should thanks to the National Government – and John Key knows it, says Labour Leader David Cunliffe.

“John Key’s government is planning to keep the price of copper broadband services artificially high because it has a political problem and is trying to make its ultrafast broadband plan more attractive to consumers.

“The Commerce Commission’s draft determination would have cut prices for broadband by up to $12.50 a month.  But the Minister’s proposals override the independent regulator, and would keep prices higher for longer.

“John Key’s claim in Parliament today that “under every scenario consumers will pay less” is just plain wrong.  Every scenario put forward by the Government in its discussion document would see Kiwis pay more than they would under the Commerce Commission’s plan.

“This is corporate welfare.  National is once again propping up big business at the expense of Kiwi families.

Cunliffe also points out the crony capitalism involved in Key’s slippery deal:

“Embarrassingly, John Key’s former boss at Bankers Trust, Gavin Walker, is the chair of Chorus’ UFB Steering Committee.  Given the $600-million estimated subsidy involved, that is just too close for comfort.

Following this question and Key’s comments on it later yesterday, Paul McBeth and NBR staff report on the dodgy way Key operates, getting advice by phone from Chorus Chair and passing it off as official advice. (h/t Penny Bright)

At question time in Parliament today, Prime Minister John Key defended comments that Chorus may go broke if the Commerce Commission pressed ahead with plans for a sharp cut in the regulated price on the copper lines, saying Cabinet had received advice based on commercial and in-confidence briefings between Chorus and Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment.

In his post-Cabinet press conference yesterday, Key said he could not recall where the advice had come from.

He said today that those briefings probably would have come after he received a phone call from Chorus chair Sue Sheldon in December last year when she shared her view on the impact of the regulator’s draft decision and gave the government “some understanding of the issues they would face.”

The article goes on to point out the significance of Cunliffe’s question, in relation to the manipulations of Joyce and Key around the comparative pricing of copper wire and brroadband connections.

He was answering the first question directed to him by the newly elected leader of the Labour Party, David Cunliffe, who asked if Key still believed Chorus would “go broke” if proposals to drop the price of copper services in line with Commerce Commission recommendations went ahead.

The new Labour leader also asked why then-ICT Minister Steven Joyce did not include base copper pricing in UFB contract negotiations.

Cunliffe’s choice is significant because he was Communications Minister in 2006 when he surprised Telecom by forcing operational separation between its core infrastructure and competitive telephony and broadband services in a move that saw prices to consumers drop.

Cunliffe is expected to campaign heavily on that record in the context of the current spat over how to price copper services in a way that doesn’t undermine the government’s desire to see consumers switch quickly to the fibre-based ultra-fast broadband network, which the government is underwriting.

So there may be more to come on this story.  I hope the MSM are paying attention.

[update] Press release from Coalition for Fair Internet Pricing.

ASX & ASIC Asked to Investigate Chorus Insolvency Speculation

Ongoing speculation of a risk that Chorus Ltd (CNU) may become insolvent has led New Zealand’s Coalition for Fair Internet Pricing to ask the Australian Securities Exchange (ASX) and the regulator, the Australian Securities & Investments Commission (ASIC), to inquire into the company.

[...]

A spokeswoman for the Coalition for Fair Internet Pricing, Sue Chetwin, also Chief Executive of Consumer NZ, said today: “We continue to be concerned that there may be information circulating in Wellington, as the Prime Minister has confirmed, about the financial viability of Chorus Ltd under the Commerce Commission’s draft determination that is not available to its shareholders or to the broader market.

 

39 comments on “Cunliffe’s not so shabby question: broadband costs”

  1. The FACTS are that you cannot have either transparency or democratic accountability without proper written records.

    Here the Public Records Act 2005 is quite pivotal.

    Unfortunately, the RULE OF LAW – ie: the implementation and enforcement of the Public Records Act 2005, is being violated in a major way at both central and local government level.

    eg: ‘the books’ are not open at central and local government level, and we aren’t given the ‘devilish detail’ of where exactly public tax and rates monies are being spent, invested or borrowed.

    New Zealand is effectively like a legislative ‘Wild West’.

    On so many pivotal fronts the RULE OF LAW is not upheld, those who make the law don’t follow it themselves, and those responsible for upholding and implementing the LAW – just ‘make it up’.

    This won’t be happening on my watch!

    Good on David Cunliffe for helping to expose more corrupt, crony capitalism!

    ‘Her Warship’ ;)

    Penny Bright

  2. Herodotus 2

    From an alternative angle, what would have been chorus’s pricing policy should they not have won the fibre tender? Should that not indicate what premium there is?
    Perhaps in reflection the govt should have owned the fibre lines we already have invested $1b into the process.
    This has the ability to save households as much if not more than the Lab &Greens power policy.
    This fibre is something that has an immediate impact on our daily lives, coupled with SNA1 whereby there is a perception that corporates come 1st.
    This is a great commencing point in differentiation between Cunliffe / Key

    • Draco T Bastard 2.1

      Perhaps in reflection the govt should have owned the fibre lines we already have invested $1b into the process.

      The government should own the entire telecommunications sector. Having private investors has cost us $17b dollars in loss just for Telecom. Add in the other telco’s and the loss goes up.

      We are, IMO, a minimum of five years behind where we would be if telecommunications hadn’t been deregulated and sold.

      • billbrowne 2.1.1

        Yes, at a minimum Chorus should be re-nationalised, they own both the Copper mine that the NZ people paid for and the fibre mine that the NZ people are paying for.

      • srylands 2.1.2

        Don’t be ridiculous.

        That table suggests that the Crown would have recieved the same dividend stream from BNZ had it not neen sold to NAB! Without a sale there would not have been a BNZ.

        Same with Telecom – if it had stayed in State ownership why do you think it would have performed exactly the same over the last 23 years?

        • Colonial Viper 2.1.2.1

          Of course Telecom wouldn’t have “performed exactly the same”: it would have instead extracted less money out of communities, and it would not have shipped those monies overseas.

          That table suggests that the Crown would have recieved the same dividend stream from BNZ had it not neen sold to NAB! Without a sale there would not have been a BNZ.

          BULLSHIT.

          The Government could have recapped BNZ easy.

        • KJT 2.1.2.2

          Looking at the SOE’s over the same time period the evidence is that Telecom would have performed considerably better as under State ownership. AND the dividends would have stayed in New Zealand.

          AND. Kiwibank shows the value of a State owned bank, for keeping the banking cartels charges within reason, for one!

        • Telecom CEOs or shareholders wouldn’t be as rich, but our businesses and communities would more than make up the difference.

        • Draco T Bastard 2.1.2.4

          Without a sale there would not have been a BNZ.

          Actually, without the government bailout there wouldn’t have been a BNZ.

          The sale of Telecom didn’t magically make it start producing profit. It was doing that throughout the 1980s. No, what the sale did was shift that profit from being put directly back into the network and upgrading it to being dished out as dividends to the free-riding bludgers otherwise known as shareholders. which is why we’re now having to pay out even more taxpayer dollars to upgrade the network.

          Same with Telecom – if it had stayed in State ownership why do you think it would have performed exactly the same over the last 23 years?

          I don’t think it would have performed exactly the same – I think it would have performed better:
          1.) We’d already have FTTH across most, if not all, of the country
          2.) We wouldn’t have to be paying out billions to corporations to upgrade the network and
          3.) IMO, we wouldn’t be paying anywhere near as much per month for telecommunications

          Telecom is the proof that the private economic system doesn’t actually work.

          • millsy 2.1.2.4.1

            “Actually, without the government bailout there wouldn’t have been a BNZ.”

            Given the on-going social costs resulting from Ruth Richardson’s austerity package, to pay for the bailout, one wonders if it was worth keeping, especially as it is now 100% Australian owned, Bank of NZ being in name only.

        • millsy 2.1.2.5

          The old NZPO and its predessor, the Post and Telegraph department, seemed to do OK with rolling out phone lines to almost all of the country (and telegraph lines before). Not to mention other communications services. I shudder to think what would be the case if we left it up to the private sector to build our telecoms network.

          Compare and contrast with broadband today, where you are stuffed if you leave the cities.

          National’s original proposal of a single fibre to the home network, that all retailers could use was a good one, and even its watered down proposal of local fibre companies was pretty good. But Chorus was allowed to join in and the whole thing became a shambles.

          Hopefully Messiah-boy will sort it when he gets in next year.

          UFB could unlock this country’s potential in a way that we could never imagine.

          • Draco T Bastard 2.1.2.5.1

            I shudder to think what would be the case if we left it up to the private sector to build our telecoms network.

            We wouldn’t have one as the BS with paying Chorus billions to do the job, despite having the income to do it before hand, shows.

  3. Blue 3

    It was quite funny to see that although the political journalists seemed to see Question Time yesterday as some sort of victory for Key, complete with stupid Herald cartoon suggesting that Cunliffe had been ‘knocked out’, the fact is that the issue he raised got significant coverage today.

    Forcing Steven Joyce into this is nothing to sneeze at.

  4. tracey 4

    Good to see nbr doing serious reporting. Political journos hang your pasty faces in shame

  5. bad12 5

    Right now the price of a ‘copper wire’ connection is probably not foremost on a lot of peoples minds, however the machinations of the Prime Minister in having the ex Telecom ‘Chorus’ set it’s own prices for such internet connections is likely to become as damaging to Slippery’s Government as was the GCSB Legislation,

    i have to wonder here what the rumored involvement of both Hooten and Farrer in the recently set up group opposing the Governments involvement in ‘price fixing’ on behalf of Chorus shareholders spells for the PM,

    What could Farrar and Hooten expect to gain from the Prime Minister on this issue, a ‘back-down’ where the Commerce Commission gets to set the price of internet access for the average Kiwi household would come at the price of a messy public campaign which would see Slippery, His fingerprints already all over the deal, lose even more appeal in the wider electorate,

    Perhaps the ‘two spinners’ of the National Party message have decided to exploit the slide in Nationals popularity with a view to a little night of the long knives leadership coup in favor of their particular pet candidate,

    Having played carrot and stick with both 2 degrees and voda-phone over their initial support for the campaign against the ‘copper tax’ Slippery’s right hand man Steven Joyce is in this little drama right up to His armpits, the rumor being is that to pacify the other tel-cos He has had to earmark the best part of the old analogue tv spectrum to be dished out to them on the cheap,

    Perhaps Slippery should have listened to Ruth Richardson’s historical call that Government has no business in business, especially one as inept as this one is proving to be,

    The PM is probably busily scratching out the hairy implants from His bald spot wondering why, recently, everything He touches seems to turn to s**t and it wasn’t like that in the good old money trading days,

    At the time of course He was doing exactly what He was told to do from the big boys upstairs who have fall guys like Slippery as the well paid middle men for times when the brown stuff hits the fan,

    i can’t see any minor servant of the Government in sight to take the fall for this latest of foot in mouth brain fades from our Prime Minister…

  6. alwyn 6

    It is a bit futile complaining that the MSM are reporting this as being a fall at the first fence by Cunliffe when he set himself up for it.
    It was Cunliffe who has promoted his activities as being a battle with his talk that “the party is on a war footing” and “We are taking the fight to the Key Government”. He also claims that “Key knows I have his measure”.
    Add to this the the statement that “I’m not expecting to have his trousers around his ankles at the first meeting”, with it’s implication that it won’t be long though and you have to expect that the media will highlight the fact that it took him THREE attempts to read a dozen words of a sheet of paper before he got them right.
    Under promise David, under promise and then out-perform. You are doing it the wrong way round.
    If you want to see how the questioning works best look back at Lockwood Smith and Tony Ryall in 2005-2008.

    • framu 6.1

      yes, because stumbling over one words is totally the big story here.

      while i agree that complaining about the MSM is a little futile – i find your sticking up for shit journalism a bit weird

      Does stumbling over one word really negate all the quotes youve picked out? Really?

      Or is it just a distraction from the substance of the question and the reply it got?

      • alwyn 6.1.1

        You misunderstand what I am trying to say.
        I shall try and be a bit clearer.
        It was Cunliffe who spent his time giving quotes to the press about how he was going to take Key apart and basically saying that Key would crumble before him.
        Then he goes into Parliament and makes a fool of himself.
        I am NOT sticking up for shit journalism as you call it.
        Stumbling over a word is totally trivial. It does not however fit in with the image Cunliffe was claiming for himself as the man who would demolish Key.

        • framu 6.1.1.1

          ok – i get you now :-)

        • karol 6.1.1.2

          Yet you quote Cunliffe as saying this:

          “I’m not expecting to have his trousers around his ankles at the first meeting”,

          And so he was not building up expectations as you claim. The line about taking on Key was for the party in the context of the leadership contest.

          To the media, he said in effect, “I know I will make mistakes, I am not expecting an instant knockout blow in the House – we are beginning a long election campaign.”
          Of course, the short term memory, drama queens in the MSM want instant results.

          • alwyn 6.1.1.2.1

            Now I am getting seriously concerned.
            Are you saying that Cunliffe will say one thing to a party audience, where he is trying to get them to vote for him, and then feed another line to the media?
            What does he actually mean then. The options appear to be
            1. The members of the party are so stupid they won’t even realise I don’t actually have any real belief that I can or will do what I am telling them.
            2. The members of the media are so stupid that they won’t find out that I was boasting about what I was going to do to Key in the party meetings.
            3. I can’t remember what I said last week.
            4. Why should I say what I mean. I’m a leading Labour politician and it’s my right to lie whenever I feel like it.
            Incidentally, everything I quoted him as saying was reported in the media, as direct quotes mostly. Are you sure that he only said it to party audiences?
            As for your interpretation that he was saying “I know I will make mistakes … ” can you show me ANY occasion when he has admitted to making a mistake?

            • karol 6.1.1.2.1.1

              Oh, alwyn, we all frame things differently to different audiences – nothing sinister about it.

              See Gordon Campbell on that.

              nd since it will be Labour Party members, unions and Labour MPs who will decide the leadership contest, it was inevitable that hating on John Key would become a default option, and an easy way of looking staunch. Yet to outsiders, the fixation the three contenders seem to have with the taking down of John Key – up to and including Shane Jones’ rant last week about torturing his testicles – is kind of embarrassing. Hopefully, it has just been campaign rhetoric. Because if the successful candidate wants to reach a wider audience and win the 2014 election, Labour will need to dial it back.

              Cunliffe said to members he can take on Key – people were especially calling for that re-election debates, etc.

              But there’s more to leadership of a team than on-on-one encounters between leaders.

        • Anne 6.1.1.3

          Cunliffe was claiming for himself as the man who would demolish Key.

          He didn’t say he was going to do it overnight and Alwyn knows it.

          Beware the worm that turns?

        • felix 6.1.1.4

          “It was Cunliffe who spent his time giving quotes to the press about how he was going to take Key apart and basically saying that Key would crumble before him.”

          alwyn, I think you’re mistaken. I can’t seem to find a quote of Cunliffe saying anything of the sort.

          I can find a couple of him say he would “take the fight to John Key” but that’s nothing at all like what you claimed.

          Would you like to rephrase?

          • Colonial Viper 6.1.1.4.1

            alwyn is permitted his personal alternate reality…

          • alwyn 6.1.1.4.2

            You won’t find him saying those exact words but that isn’t what I was claiming.
            As you say he said he would take the fight to key.
            He also said that it would be war, although I haven’t pinned down a reference.

            He did say “Prime Minister John Key should be worried” and “John Keys got a problem”
            http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11125165

            He also said “We will be taking the fight to the Government” and “I believe I have his number and I believe he knows I do”
            http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11125621

            He also opined that “I’ve got his number” and “I can foot it with John Key … in any debate, anywhere, anytime”
            http://blog.labour.org.nz/2013/09/13/winning-why-are-you-the-one-to-take-on-and-beat-john-key-labour-leadership-qa-14/

            If that isn’t claiming he was going to best Key rather easily I don’t know what is.
            Then he couldn’t even read out his questiom!

            • karol 6.1.1.4.2.1

              Cunliffe not only stated his questions, but as I said in my post, that and Key’s answers raised serious questions from some journalists/commentators. And Key’s answers show him to be a little on the dodgy side.

              But, as CV says, Alwyn’s comments seem to come from some ARG.

              • Arfamo

                I watched that stumble on TV One Newsotainment. It was amusing. Even David laughed at it. It’s yesterday’s news, and not really even news. Why is anyone getting their knickers in a twist over it? People are far more interested in everything else Cunliffe is saying and doing. Jesus, if we focussed on the number of stupid mis-speaks Key makes we’d never notice what else he’s up to.

                • Pascal's bookie

                  ” Why is anyone getting their knickers in a twist over it? ”

                  Lack of anything substantive to criticise I would think.

            • felix 6.1.1.4.2.2

              “If that isn’t claiming he was going to best Key rather easily I don’t know what is.”

              Then you don’t know what is.

              Every one of those statements implies being ready for a tough battle. Nothing in there about an easy besting at all.

  7. tracey 7

    And yet the pm was still exposed again… loss of memory… phone calls with the chair is direct interference in a company. Only last week srylands was hollering how they cant do this.

  8. Sable 8

    I wonder if the public at large really understand this?They are misinformed at every turn by the sleazy mainstream media and Key’s isn’t about to fess up.

    I think Cunliffe and the Greens really need a proper nationwide media campaign of their own outlining this and other shortcomings of this current government explained in terms people can readily understand.

    The only way to bypass the MSM’s lies is to take them on at their own game.

    • Anne 8.1

      Cunliffe and the Greens really need a proper nationwide media campaign of their own outlining this and other shortcomings of this current government explained in terms people can readily understand.

      That is what I thought Red Alert was going to do… :mad:

      • Draco T Bastard 8.1.1

        Haven’t been over to RA for years now.

        • felix 8.1.1.1

          Hilariously, despite two new posts since Sunday, redalert authors still haven’t mentioned that the NZ Labour Party has a new leader.

          Amazing.

          • Colonial Viper 8.1.1.1.1

            This can’t be happening
            This can’t be happening
            This can’t be happening
            This can’t be happening
            This can’t be happening
            This can’t be happening
            This can’t be happening
            This can’t be happening
            This can’t be happening
            This can’t be happening
            This can’t be happening
            This can’t be happening
            This can’t be happening
            etc…

          • Anne 8.1.1.1.2

            Well, look who the moderating authors are… all of them ABCers. It was set up by the ABCs for the ABCs. We just didn’t know it.

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    "The increase in the Reserve Bank's interest rate, while expected, shows little imagination and will raise mortgage costs for home owners," says CTU economist Bill Rosenberg. “The focus should be on getting housing costs down, and raising wages to make...
    CTU | 23-04
  • One year on: progress made to prevent another Rana Plaza tragedy
    Date of Release: Thursday, April 24, 2014Body:  An official from one of the two global union bodies that negotiated the Bangladesh Accord on Fire and Building Safety, currently visiting New Zealand, says that the Accord continues to make big steps forward to ensure...
    First Union Media | 23-04
  • Update from Dr.Gevil
    We wanted to share with you a little fun....
    Gareth’s World | 23-04
  • Matauri Bay: There are certain stories that get under your skin
    There are certain stories that get under your skin, stories that no matter how many times you hear them somehow strike you in a way that you never forget, stories that become a very part of you. The story of...
    Greenpeace NZ blog | 23-04
  • Anit-fluoridation advertising deceptive
     Looks like the scientific fight-back against the misinformation coming from anti-fluoridation groups is having some success. This press release from the on-line Making Sense of Fluoride group. Anti Fluoridation Advertisements Rejected by The Advertising Complaints Authority Over the past week,...
    Open Parachute | 23-04
  • The Art of Letting Go
    via Porcupine Farm   While the big news with regard to the rebuild has been the scaling back of the Arts Precinct, this is just one part of a wider narrative that sees the grand plan unravelling. Since I wrote...
    Rebuilding Christchurch | 23-04
  • Joyce tells Otago to ship in more students
    Tertiary Update Vol 17 No 11 Tertiary education minister Steven Joyce is using threatened changes to university councils to bully the University of Otago to take more international students, says TEU national secretary Sharn...
    TEU | 23-04
  • New money for Māori innovation won’t cover cuts to Māori research
    Ngā Pae o te Māramatanga, New Zealand’s Māori centre of research excellence is welcoming the  government’s decision to invest up to $2.5 million a year over the next two years in Māori-led science and...
    TEU | 23-04
  • UCOL staff given holiday but not pay rise
    UCOL staff got two extra days’ holiday they did not bargain for this week between Easter and Anzac Day, but what they really want is a pay rise. The polytechnic’s chief executive Paul McIlroy said...
    TEU | 23-04
  • Workers Memorial Day 2014
    Please be advised that there are three events planned to commemorate Workers Memorial Day (28 April) in Wellington. The media are invited to attend all three events.What When Photo:  ...
    CTU | 23-04
  • Shane Jones speaks out
    On 3news last night, Shane Jones gave a staged interview where he got some things off his chest. Not exactly a graceful exit, but there you go. Two of the things he said were especially interesting to me. Shane said:...
    Polity | 23-04
  • No Economic Rationale for $760m Warkworth Toll Road
    This is the fifth in a series of posts based on the Campaign for Better Transport’s submission to the Puhoi to Warkworth Board of Inquiry. The full presentation is over at bettertransport.org.nz In this post we look at the economic...
    Transport Blog | 23-04
  • iPredict Ltd 2014 Election Update #15
    Column – iPredict iPredicts 7000 registered traders continue to believe Winston Peters NZ First party will hold the balance of power after the election and allow National to govern. There has been a small gain to Act and the Conservatives...
    Its our future | 23-04
  • Photo of the day – Vulcan Lane
    Vulcan Lane alive with people Photo is credited to oh.yes.melbourne...
    Transport Blog | 23-04
  • Have your say on what Internet rights should look like
    Today I launched my Internet Rights and Freedoms Bill – NZ’s first ever bill crowdsourced by a political party. The launch happened live on Reddit, and I was joined in my office Joy Liddicoat (former Human Rights Commissioner and present...
    frogblog | 23-04
  • Michael Porter on Social Progress
    via CNN, Fareed Zakaria has a fascinating interview with Harvard's Michael Porter, architect of the Social Progress Index that was launched to great fanfare a little while back. New Zealand won the top rank in that index, and Porter's main...
    Polity | 23-04
  • Time running out to save uni councils
    There’s only a week left to have your say on the Government’s changes to university and wānanga councils. Tertiary Education Minister Steven Joyce has put forward dramatic changes to the way uni and wānanga councils are made up – removing...
    frogblog | 23-04
  • Another reason why we need an enforceable BORA
    Back in 2003, the then-Labour government, faced with the "threat" of an unpopular child-sex offender being released from prison at the end of their sentance, enacted the Parole (Extended Supervision) and Sentencing Amendment Act, allowing them to be detained for...
    No Right Turn | 23-04
  • Govt response to alcohol report simplistic
    The Government's response to a Ministry of Justice report on minimum alcohol pricing is simplistic and turns its back on those who are most susceptible to alcohol marketing promoting greater consumption, Labour's Justice spokesperson Andrew Little says. "The Ministry's report...
    Labour | 25-04
  • Govt fails Southern Cross Forest workers
    The Government's failure to deal with problems in the wood processing industry has resulted in more needless job losses, Green Party forestry spokesperson Steffan Browning said today.Southern Cross Forest Products announcement of another sawmill closure brings the tally of closures...
    Greens | 24-04
  • Humiliation for Government in Chinese dictat
    New Zealand’s food safety systems should be respected by our trading partners, but instead the Government has been humiliated with the Chinese dictating the terms of our infant formula production, Labour’s Primary Industries spokesperson Damien O’Connor says.   “The Government...
    Labour | 24-04
  • Honouring our Pacific soldiers
    Labour’s Pacific Affairs spokesperson and MP for Mangere, Su’a William Sio, will pay a special tribute to the many Pacific Islanders who fought in the New Zealand Armed Forces during the First World War in a speech he is giving...
    Labour | 24-04
  • Government inaction on power and housing to blame for latest rate rise
    Green Party Co-leader Metiria Turei says today's interest rate rise, that will hit home owners and businesses, is a consequence of the government's failure to get a grip on electricity prices and the property market, particularly in Auckland."The Green Party...
    Greens | 23-04
  • Rate rise not needed if Government was doing its job
    Today’s interest rate rise wouldn’t have been necessary if the Government had been doing its job properly and targeting the sources of inflation, Labour says. “New Zealand interest rates are among the highest in the world, putting more and more...
    Labour | 23-04
  • Real independence needed in food safety
    The Green Party are calling for a truly independent body to regulate our food safety.Food safety Minister Nikki Kaye has announced the establishment of a Food Safety and Assurance Advisory Council as part of the Government's response to last year's...
    Greens | 23-04
  • Another report won’t help the East Coast
    The Government has a critical role to play in regional development on the East Coast says Gisborne-based Labour MP Moana Mackey “The release of the East Coast Regional Economic Potential Study highlights a number of areas of strength and weakness...
    Labour | 23-04
  • Another interest rate hike will punish mortgage holders
    Green Party Co-leader Metiria Turei says another interest rate hike on Thursday will cost home owners an extra $25 a month on a $250,000 mortgage, on top of the $25 dollars a month from the previous rates rise, and she...
    Greens | 23-04
  • Green Party launches Internet Rights and Freedoms Bill
    The Green Party has today launched the Internet Rights and Freedoms Bill, New Zealand's first ever Bill crowdsourced by a political party.Members of the public will be invited to shape the proposed law, which will protect ten basic rights and...
    Greens | 23-04
  • Sanil Kumar has to leave New Zealand tomorrow
    The Associate Minister of Immigration Nikki Kaye’s decision not to intervene means kidney transplant patient Sanil Kumar must leave New Zealand by tomorrow, says Labour’s Immigration spokesperson Rajen Prasad. “Kumar, a plumber and sheet metal worker, was on a work visa...
    Labour | 22-04
  • Time to do the right thing for our veterans
    A Labour government will adopt the Law Commission’s recommendation to ensure all war veterans are eligible for a Veteran’s Pension, Labour Leader David Cunliffe says. “Veterans are only eligible for the pension if they are considered ‘significantly’ disabled, or more...
    Labour | 22-04
  • Public servant is owed an apology
    Nigel Fyfe is owed an apology from the State Services Commissioner Iain Rennie and Foreign Affairs Minister Murray McCully, says Labour's State Services spokesperson, Maryan Street. “The former MFAT official has now been restored to a position in the Ministry...
    Labour | 22-04
  • Laws for enforcing not trading off
    The idea that a Government department can give a nod and a wink to traders that it won’t enforce shop trading laws and for a Government MP to then claim it as grounds for a review of the law is...
    Labour | 21-04