web analytics
The Standard
Advertising

KiwiBuild roundup

Written By: - Date published: 7:41 am, November 22nd, 2012 - 144 comments
Categories: housing, labour - Tags:

With everything else going on, KiwiBuild didn’t get the attention that it should have. But there was still a range of reaction in the media. RNZ had a mixed review:

Critics doubt Labour housing plan will solve crisis

[Labour] says under the scheme, first-home buyers will be able to buy a modest house for about $300,000. …

However Hugh Pavelitch, co-author of the annual Demographia International Housing Affordability Survey, says that is still more than five times the average New Zealand salary, so is not affordable by international measures. Mr Pavelitch says Labour is ignoring the two main drivers of the housing affordability crisis – land supply and lack of infrastructure investment. …

The Registered Master Builders Federation says despite losing thousands of skilled workers, it could train new staff and gear up over several years. The federation says it is currently building about 30% to 40% fewer homes than its long-term average. Chief executive Warwick Quinn says a programme such as the one Labour is proposing would give builders much-needed confidence in the market. Mr Quinn says providing growth increased over several years, the industry would be able to bring through apprentices to help build significantly more homes. ….

The Salvation Army has welcomed the policy, saying it has previously called for a large-scale approach to build housing. The national director of its social policy unit, Major Campbell Roberts, says more detail is needed, especially on the ability to build that many additional homes.

Of course it isn’t going to “solve the crisis” no one ever claimed it would. But it is going to help. Economist Peter Lyons writes in the ODT:

Shearer’s building plan has merit

Labour leader David Shearer has painted a bold vision. His KiwiBuild announcement is big picture stuff. He has announced Labour’s intention to build 100,000 affordable houses for first-home buyers over the next decade in a public-private arrangement.

My main reservation is where is the land coming from? This appears to be the main problem of housing affordability in certain areas at present.

The reason I like the announcement is that average houses in New Zealand are way overvalued. Our houses are generally nothing spectacular as dwellings but we are paying premium dollars for them.

This is an aspect of our economy which we have control over. We can’t control international oil or dairy prices and the productivity of our farms is limited by technology. We do have the ability to control the prices we pay for our houses, if we choose to exercise it as a nation. …

Mr Shearer has pointed to the big advantage a government-sponsored building programme has. It is economics of scale. This should ensure a fall in construction costs for first homes but it doesn’t overcome the issue of land costs in key areas. …

I applaud Mr Shearer’s big picture approach. He has identified the major area of our economy over which we have control if we choose to exercise it. He will be criticised by market zealots who abhor any form of government intervention. He also needs to confront the land affordability issue.

But as an avenue to economic prosperity the plan has merit. It will create jobs and skills and reduce the price of the main financial transaction in most peoples’ lives. It is far superior to relying on monetary policy and low interest rates, which serves to further inflate house prices and indebtedness. Unless we solve this housing affordability issue we will continue our economic stagnation and relative decline. We can fix it if we choose to.

An anonymous editorial in The Herald is likewise supportive:

Kiwi build solid base for future at last

The previous Labour Government bequeathed the country KiwiSaver, Kiwibank and KiwiRail. The next one proposes to establish “KiwiBuild”, a construction programme that could help many young couples afford their first home. …

If Labour is wrong, its project would divert a great deal of the country’s building industry into activity of little value and the economy would suffer. But if it is right, many young first-home seekers would reap the benefit. For the moment, the party has a concrete policy to clarify its political character and offer voters something distinctive at the election two years from now.

By far the best coverage came from Brian Rudman:

It’s bold, but Labour housing scheme looks do able

Whatever the eventual outcome of Labour’s leadership struggles, let’s hope the brave and adventurous Kiwibuild housing project announced by leader David Shearer at last weekend’s party conference, doesn’t get lost in the melee. Any young Aucklander seeking to buy a first home, knows from bitter experience that the sainted “market” is failing to deliver homes they can afford to buy. …

Instead of waiting for the market, Labour’s plan is to build 100,000 affordable entry-level homes to buy over a ten year period, with two-thirds of the houses built in the first five years located in Auckland.

Mr Shearer said they could be built for less than $300,000 each, and housing spokesman Annette King followed up in a television interview, suggesting a breakdown of around $250,000 for the house, and $50,000 for the land.

Despite scepticism from political opponents, industry sources confirm that even in Auckland, this $300,000 benchmark is achievable, able to produce a one or two bedroom, 90 sq metre, two-storey terrace house, all wired and piped and ready for occupation. That’s based on a conservative costing of $1,000 a sq metre for 120 sq m of land, and a 90 sq m home, costing $2,000 a sq m to build. …

We’ll have to wait and see whether Labour’s solution for the rental crisis is equally brave.

There are certainly hurdles to clear for KiwiBuild to be successful, and no it isn’t on its own going to solve the housing crisis. But on the whole the policy has been well received. It will have a significant impact on housing supply, it will create jobs and economic stimulus, it is the most ambitious state building program in over 50 years. I’m sticking with my first reaction, this is a historic policy.

144 comments on “KiwiBuild roundup”

  1. David H 1

    I’m sorry but this just shows how far out of touch Shearer and co are. Yay! Lets build thousands of houses, and we will charge 300k each for them. And they are for New home buyers, and the poor. Oh well, when they have stood derelict for years, not built, or rented out. BECAUSE WE DON’T HAVE 300K for a house, I don’t have $30 spare. This is why Labour will go down in 2014. A leader that’s useless. A Caucus that’s out of control. And pie in the sky policies like this.

    Now how about something about jobs??? No Too Hard?
    Warm Houses?? Greens Policy
    Bashing beneficiaries for painting roofs?? Easy Peasy. National AND Labour policy.

    My Predictions for 2014
    National
    Greens
    Mana
    Labour

    And I have been saying this for a while except that now even I have the Nacts winning due to the bullshit from last weekend. What a weak kneed, panty waist, Shearer has become.

    • r0b 1.1

      I guess for a while every post is going to turn in to an “I hate David Shearer” discussion. Tedious, but there it is.

    • Tracey 1.2

      You do get that building that many houses will create jobs, don’t you? Probably more than, say, two mines and an oil rig

    • Pete 1.3

      You can have a small one or two bed now for that price, but few people seem to want to live in them. They want three bed and a yard.

      Labours plan appears to be – according to Rudman – horizontal apartments. Good luck getting a car park outside your house, too.

  2. vto 2

    It would be interesting to see the how… any possible links to this? Poor old Shearer bumbled through his answer to this ‘how’ question last night I see. So, how?

    Great policy though and it must driven forward with determination. Forget all the nay-sayers – just point them to the state housing schemes of the past It can be done but it would be most interesting to see the ‘how’.

    • r0b 2.1

      That’s why I was reassured by the Rudman piece. He has gone out and talked to people in the industry, who say it can be done. Worth reading.

      • vto 2.1.1

        yes I see that. Either $50,000 for land and $250,000 for build, or $120,000 for land and $180,000 for build. The latter is the more probable, King’s suggestions being a bit wayward on the land side.

        So I guess the ‘how’ is slice off the usual margin and sales costs, perhaps also funding costs, and get economies of scale (quick, buy shares in Fletchers again). Not too much available through economies of scale while margin saving and those others would be around $80-100,000. How much do places of this size and type sell for currently in and around, say, Auckland? That would be a bit of a guide.

        Just curious. But the ‘how’ is not as important as the ‘do’. Just get stuck in and start building them. The costs will fine-tune nce underway and the process improve. Teething problems, no doubt, but yep, just get stuck in.

        A bit like this government got stuck in to quickly pay $1,700,000,000 to finance company investors (people alreday with homes generally), and to quickly rip away normal democratic processes in Canterbury and offer $400,000,000 to farmers’ irrigation schemes (people already with homes, and farms, generally), and to quickly offer a $35,000,000 loan to Stephen Joyce’s ex-business Mediaworks.

        Get into it in the exact same way…

  3. Hami Shearlie 3

    Even an outstanding policy needs a great salesman. David Shearer showed last night on TV3 that he is not that person. Sad but true!

  4. Chris 4

    “Of course it isn’t going to “solve the crisis” no one ever claimed it would”

    Except Labour have said it will solve the crisis, to quote from the policty factsheet – “to fix this hole in New Zealand’s housing market”, “Labour is offering a serious solution to one of our enduring issues” and finally “this solution offers a bold and comprehensive answer…”

    • r0b 4.1

      As Labour claims it fixes a hole in housing supply for those who can afford to buy (and yes the price seems too high to me, but that is apparently the best price that a house can be built at these days).

      It doesn’t address the need for an adequate supply of well priced rental accommodation, which is also a pressing need. The “housing crisis” is a multi-headed beast. Hence I would say that it doesn’t solve the housing crisis. But it’s a start.

      • Chris 4.1.1

        I agree and I hope the leadership in Labour see at as such. I worry that with a huge policy like this it could become the only thing they do about the issue – ignoring the fact that there are other items that need to be addressed in order to fix it.

  5. debatewatcher 5

    I think the policy is a bad one in terms of rorting etc. and it’s not exactly left-wing. Why not build more state houses? It’s pretty simple.

    But most voters don’t think these things through. It’s a policy aimed at the middle classes and even if few people will end up benefiting from the cheap houses (it is a lottery as has been pointed out), it might attract a few voters. The working class can probably be bribed better with a marginally higher minimum wage or no GST on fruit and vegetables (worked so well last time).

    Kiwibuild, aka Capital Gains for Families, is a cynical policy for that reason. I’m sure Mickey Savage (the historical one, not the well-known commenter here) would approve. Not.

    • Fortran 5.1

      That’s completing 192 houses a week – yea.
      Where is the land and at what cost coming from ?
      I am sure that builders can build within a cost, but such as Council fees will stuff most land purchases, before building starts.

  6. vto 6

    One thing I love about this policy is how it throws the free market back in the free market’s face.

    People cry – ooohh, rort rort, distort distort, wah wah. They can go jump. The government is entitled to act in manner as free as the free market itself. The government is just another player in the economy. So get stuck in, government, just as other players do. There is absolutely no moral or political or other basis for not jumping in and building and selling houses on terms that any free marketeer is similarly free to do…. if they can compete that is. The taxpayers and voters of NZ are as much a free market player free to do exactly as they wish just as much as anyone else. Yeehaaa, ride ‘em cowboy..

    Always love it when the game gets played straight back at the game players… the look of possum in the headlights ….

    • rosy 6.1

      “The government is just another player in the economy. So get stuck in, government, just as other players do”

      ^^ This. The government has the tools, so use them. Most successful countries (economically + societally) do.

    • Kleefer 6.2

      The government is absolutely not “just another player” in the market (I won’t use the term free market because the housing market in New Zealand is anything but free). For one thing, it uses money taken from people by force as opposed to money voluntarily spent/lended. I won’t bother with this argument too much as most readers of this site support violent redistribution of wealth.

      But from a purely practical perspective, there are several important differences between the government and other market participants. One of them is that the government doesn’t have to play by the rules it sets for others. A good example of this is local councils suing dairy farms for polluting rivers while dumping raw sewage into those same rivers. Another one is how National re-wrote the RMA to “fast-track” government projects like motorways of dubious value while homeowners are left tangled in red tape if they try to so much as extend their kitchen.

      The other key difference is that, absent the “signal” given by profit and loss (which private market participants use to steer their decision-making), the government has no rational way of allocating resources. How does it decide where to build, what types of houses to build, etc? Private developers, builders etc get “feedback” from prices and from the profitability of their activities. The government doesn’t have this, and it looks like Labour is trying to somehow legislate around the laws of economics to prevent the lucky few taking advantage of the artificially low prices to get a government-subsidised capital gain.

      As one commenter above mentioned, this is probably something Savage would have opposed. Surely the point of state involvement in accommodation is to provide housing the private market isn’t providing (for whatever reason), not to try and compete on an uneven playing field with those in the market. There is huge potential here for cronyism, given that builders who aren’t the recipients of government contracts could be forced out of business by taxpayer-subsidised competitors.

      Sure, build some more state houses if you believe that’s the right thing to do, but first take a hard look at the structural issues causing housing affordability and address those. That would require acknowledging the overwhelming evidence that ring-fencing cities with urban limits causes land prices inside the boundaries to rise. Unfortunately Labour and especially the Greens deny this is the case. National seem to recognise it but have done bugger-all about it so far. Maybe when renters outnumber home-owners someone will see the political mileage that can be achieved from allowing affordable housing to be built.

      • Colonial Viper 6.2.1

        I don’t see much problem here: the Government can provide a better, cheaper deal for housing for ordinary people.

        If the private sector thinks it can do it just as efficiently and cheaply, then good for them, they can try and compete. Prospective home owners can choose the deal which suits them best.

        It’s a free market.

      • Draco T Bastard 6.2.2

        The other key difference is that, absent the “signal” given by profit and loss (which private market participants use to steer their decision-making), the government has no rational way of allocating resources. How does it decide where to build, what types of houses to build, etc?

        Ensuring that the people in society don’t live in poverty and that resource use is kept within sustainable limits seems to be quite rational to me. Certainly a hell of a lot more rational than relying upon the greed of the few and the dead weight loss of profit (and, yes, the fact that profit is a dead weight loss is proven.).

        There is huge potential here for cronyism, given that builders who aren’t the recipients of government contracts could be forced out of business by taxpayer-subsidised competitors.

        Easy solution, although i doubt that it will be sued, reinstitute the Ministry of Works and don’t hire private contractors. Be even cheaper that way as it won’t have to pay out the dead weight loss of profit to the contractors.

        The government doesn’t have this, and it looks like Labour is trying to somehow legislate around the laws of economics to prevent the lucky few taking advantage of the artificially low prices to get a government-subsidised capital gain.

        hahahahahaha

        The laws of economics that you religiously adhere to are completely fucken bunk – as has been proven time and time again over the last century or so.

        That would require acknowledging the overwhelming evidence that ring-fencing cities with urban limits causes land prices inside the boundaries to rise.

        Land price isn’t the problem – sprawl is. In fact, increasing the amount of land available will increase the costs of houses and living in them. We really do only have one option – building in more density.

    • Pete 6.3

      How dangerous a little knowledge can be vto. Or, in this case, no knowledge at all.

      The government has to play by the same council rules, therefore faces the same costs, therefore will not be able to build cheap houses anymore than a developer can now.

      The reason developers don’t build one or two bed tiny houses is because few people want to live in them, and council places restictions on density and light planes.

      Remove those restrictions, and somehow make this type of living popular, and the private sector can do sub 300k right now.

      • McFlock 6.3.1

        of course, developers aren’t in a position to rewrite any particularly cumbersome law or regulation.

        • felix 6.3.1.1

          I love how they think that just because they’ve fallen for the neo-lib bullshit about govt doing nothing, we all have to promise to do the same.

          lolz.

          • Pete 6.3.1.1.1

            You’re faced with the exact same costs that make them uneconomic now.

            If the govt removes council restrictions to make their program cheaper, great. Developers don’t want these expensive restrictions either.

            Nice to see those on the left finally grasping the costs involved in regulation.

            • McFlock 6.3.1.1.1.1

              Apart from the fact that developers would be happy putting everyone in fecking cupboards with black mould and damp. 
                   
              So they need to be restrained by regulation.
                 
              But there’s no problem with the government issuing blanket permission for a specific project or array of designs, especially when its supervision of the development is a matter of public interest. If a public official signed off on producing some of the shite I’ve seen people expected to buy or pay rent for, even one of Key’s ministers would be forced to resign. All their goddamn portfolios, too, not some fucking clayton’s resignation like “what else did I do wrong?”.

              • pete

                But there’s no problem with the government issuing blanket permission for a specific project or array of designs, especially when its supervision of the development is a matter of public interest

                The house design isn’t the problem. After all, we have the likes of Lockwood, and other companies, providing generic house builds from existing templates.

                The problem is how you use the land. This is where a big chunk of the costs lays. Herodotus points out the issues. They aren’t going to go away just because the government becomes the builder.

                • McFlock

                  So now “the problem” isn’t council regulation at all, but practical issues around infrastructure development and urban layout. 
                             
                  I’m sure those could be solved by a decently-resourced and accountable public service, just as they were for the original state housing programmes.  
                           
                  Next you’ll be complaining that the likely albedo of the dwellings will increase Climate Change. Anything to stop the plebs from owning their own homes, eh? 

            • Draco T Bastard 6.3.1.1.1.2

              Point me to the regulations that prevent developers from building cheap houses please.

              Hint: You won’t find any because there aren’t any, the reason developers don’t build cheap houses is because they can make more building expensive houses.

              • pete

                Herodotus has pointed them out.

                The house structure cost is not the issue. It has remained fairly static over the years. It’s the regulation concerning land use i.e. densities, site coverage (% of land the house takes up), light planes, and councils ticket clicking. All that adds to the total cost. In order to absorb those costs, you need to build a more expensive house.

                So, the government faces the exact same costs. If government wants to remove some of those regulations to get KiwiBuild through, great. Developers would welcome them, too.

  7. Lanthanide 7

    Is 120m2 of land legal to build a house on? Smallest sections I see in CHCH are around 320-330m.

    Funny that Annette says $50k for the land, when the above is $1k for just 120m of land, 140% more costly than her figure.

    • vto 7.1

      Lanthanide, there stacks of sites around Christchurch that have land areas around 120m2, and some a lot less. This is medium density stuff they are talking about with those numbers. Two level 90 m2 terrace houses (45m2 per level on 120m2).

      As for herodotus points below – most of those issues exist already and are not created by this policy. There are no additional issues created.

      • Herodotus 7.1.1

        Vto most issues are created by this policy , section sizes are controlled by council site coverage, height to boundary and other rules. Site coverage is part bound by what measures have been out into place and paid for by the developer to manage storm water, increase runoff require major sllutions, as not to pass on any flooding to down stream neighbours, how will this be mitigated ? We are no longer permitted to just pipe and send the untreated water into the sea

        • vto 7.1.1.1

          Appreciate all of that herodotus but this policy really does not create any issue greater than already exists. The reason is that this policy does not create more roofs over heads – there are still 4 million souls who sleep each night in our fair land.

          A policy which would create more of these issues in the manner you suggest is one which increases the population, as more roofs would be needed.

          This policy is about catering to the existing population. Instead of their roofs being rentals the roofs become their own. Same number of roofs, same amount of stormwater.

          make sense?

          • Herodotus 7.1.1.1.1

            Not really the houses that these potential 1st home buyers will still exist even if they move out of their rentals.
            Increasing density also increases the costs associated with the new buildings. The smaller the section the greater the % of land is taken up in roads. As an estimate 30% of land is taken up in roads decrease the section size the % quickly rises. Think of sections that are 25 m deep for every 50 m of depth there is another 8m of road & footpath, narrow the section to 12m2 then a road is required for every 24m2. This will increase the cost of net yieldable land. Also to comply with existing sitr coverage rules of 45% you would require a section the size of 200m, this is 67% greater than being suggested also increasing the cost. The difficulty in building creates cost implications, as storm water pipes that service lots by running down the back of the sections require bridging of foundations to support the loading on the pipes and the load bearing walls, this costs more.
            Your situation works if you are replacing existing properties with new ones or building taller, but much of the policy is in regard to stand alone houses.
            I am not opposed to the idea, t just appears to me that no one with any knowledge of the industry has been involved in preparing the figures to see if they are valid. Which then makes you wonder about the thought that has gone into such a foundation policy for the next election. Come out with a policy that has been peer reviewed and release this- as many like myself would be reassured that such a policy has been well thought out and is a goer and can be the basis of Labour 2014. But this appears lacking.
            Just one person opinion, and as an aside my 1st home was a 2 bedroom 85m2 masonry place, the size does work for a newly wed couple, but this was on a cross leased 800m2 section with 2 carports.

  8. Herodotus 8

    That’s based on a conservative costing of $1,000 a sq metre for 120 sq m of land, and a 90 sq m home, ” So we have houses built on 75% site coverage + pathways. So we have a sea of concrete and impervious areas. There is no council controls that allow for this. What of the infrastructure requirements: storm water management ( as all rain will enter the system think of the size of pipes and ponds), recreational facilities, public transport to complement such densities, power, fibre? With small sites say 10 x 12 m2 dimensions All cars will have to be accommodated by on-street parking, which will require larger width carriageways.
    The issues with such a policy is what appears to me the lack of thinking as to how it will work in reality, the tough questions are no being answered, like $300k is what in 2017, where is the land, what happens to new home owners who require 2+ bedrooms (for children, extended family) what is the cost of such a 2+bedroom house ??
    “..with two-thirds of the houses built in the first five years located in Auckland.” Where and how will the govt override town planning requirements. That takes time and $ to build the infrastructure required.
    Whilst the policy has merits its lack IMO detail that many in the industry cannot see how this can be achieved within the time frame and within $1.5b rolling debt level.
    Many here observe that lack of details to support the current govt policies, where is the same commentary for Labours ???

  9. Steve Wrathall 9

    A more rortable policy you couldn’t think of. From the same genius party that brought us GST off bananas and “working” for families credits to beneficiaries.
    http://cheezburger.com/6795321600

    • vto 9.1

      What, more rortable than the Government retail deposit guarantee scheme which cost the taxpayer $1.7 billion do you mean?

      Or more rortable than the tax evaders who each year cost the people about 100x times more than any beneficiary rorting?

      What planet are you on Steve Wrathall? You need to do some more thinking I think. Such thinking will result in the realisation that the true rorts lie on the other side of the political spectrum.

      • pete 9.1.1

        Cullens scheme was a disaster, yes.

        • felix 9.1.1.1

          Cullen left office in 2008. Bill English signed off on the scheme every time from then on.

          • pete 9.1.1.1.1

            It was still Cullen’s baby. But I agree – I was against it at the time. Rort central.

            Same goes for this Housing Lotto plan. I do hope they have a lot more details, because what’s been presented so far doesn’t make any sense.

  10. The Gormless Fool formerly known as Oleolebiscuitbarrell 10

    This is just stupid.

    The government is going to pick selected people and make them rich by selling them a valuable asset at a massive undervalue.

    A tiny number of people are going to receive free money based on winning a lottery.

    I thought the left was against unfariness.

    • vto 10.1

      Too many assumptions gormless. See my post above to steve wrathall and apply that to, let’s see, irrigation schemes around the country and the massive wealth effect that has on farmers, or, um, asset sales and the effect on those who can afford to buy the shares (or actually the lotto of applying for those shares), or, um, the NZX itself getting those massive taxpayer companies.

      you’re all out of balance mr gormless. how do manage to walk in a straight line?

      • The Gormless Fool formerly known as Oleolebiscuitbarrell 10.1.1

        So you are in favour of all of those things you listed, vto?

        • vto 10.1.1.1

          i can’t tell if you are or not

          but seriously, i imagine if demand is such for these that some will miss out while others “win the lotto” as you incorrectly describe it, then supply would be ramped up under this policy to meet that demand. pretty simple simple.

    • Lanthanide 10.2

      “The government is going to pick selected people and make them rich by selling them a valuable asset at a massive undervalue.”

      Not sure how it’s “massive undervalue”, if they’re selling it at the cost price. Also once these are in the market, the median and average market price by definition will be reduced.

      Also I’m not sure that living in a 90m house is going to be particularly desirable, especially for anyone wanting children (which most people do).

      • The Gormless Fool formerly known as Oleolebiscuitbarrell 10.2.1

        Well, you can’t have it both ways. I understood that the houses being sold for $100 grand less than they are worth was being touted as a virtue (in fact, the whole point) of the scheme.

        If the government is picking people to get a house for $100k less than it is worth, it has just made some lucky person rich.

        Just doesn’t seem very fair to me.

        • felix 10.2.1.1

          It probably doesn’t seem fair because you’re only imagining one house.

          Try again, but this time imagine that we keep building them until everyone who needs a house to live in has one.

          • The Gormless Fool formerly known as Oleolebiscuitbarrell 10.2.1.1.1

            Oh, I hadn’t realised that they were suggesting that everyone gets a hundred grand. You’re right, that seems much fairer.

            Who pays for it, again?

            Labour should totally use that as their slogan: Vote for us. Free money for everyone.

            • Colonial Viper 10.2.1.1.1.1

              The banks give out free money, why not the Government?

              • The Gormless Fool formerly known as Oleolebiscuitbarrell

                Well done, CV. You’ve solved all of mankind’s problems.

                Who do I talk to to get my free money?

            • vto 10.2.1.1.1.2

              This shouldn’t need pointing out but nobody is being given 100 grand. Think man think.

              • The Gormless Fool formerly known as Oleolebiscuitbarrell

                If you are given an assets worth $450 grand for $350 grand, you have been given $100 grand.

                • vto

                  No you are 100% wrong. Keep thinking

                • Lanthanide

                  I wouldn’t be keen to pay $450k for a house that I know the original occupants bought for just $350k.

                • felix

                  If everyone who needs a house to live in can get one for 350 then they’re not really “worth” 450 anymore, Ole.

                  ps when did it go up to 350? That was quick.

                  • vto

                    He he yep, both you and Lanthanide make similar points. One of many that gormless fails to acknowledge in his simplistic approach. I am sure he has one leg shorter than the other and that is why he walks around in circles going nowhere…. unless he walks forwards and backwrds and forwards and backwards ad infinitum thereby weaving an S down the road.

                  • pete

                    But they can’t. Well, not unless you’re going to build a lot of apartment buildings and force people to live in them by removing choice.

                    Hmmm…..perhaps that’s what they’re not telling us.

                    • felix

                      Can’t what?

                    • Pete

                      Can’t build a family home with yard for 300k in Auckland. You can build a tiny one or two bed for that right now. So Labour is offering nothing new, other that hinting at building horizontal apartments stretching off into the horizon.

                      Or perhaps they have neglected to mention theses homes are actually apartments.

                    • felix

                      You can’t. You’d be surprised how much of a discount you can get when you order them 10,000 at a time though.

                    • Pete

                      See Brian Rudmans comment above.

                      The house cost isn’t the problem. It’s the council requirements and land price, as has been explained.

                      Ignoring these issues doesn’t mean they disappear.

                    • felix

                      See my comment earlier. It’s the freakin government, they’re not subservient to local councils.

                      Just because you’ve bought into the ideology that says the government has to hobble itself to “compete” with the private sector doesn’t mean the rest of us are so blinded.

                    • Herodotus

                      Rudman comments appear lacking as he has not addressed anything regarding the cost to develop land, town planning requirements, time to earth work and complete the civils and where is the land and the difficulty in producing small sections. And as I have mentioned above that Annette King’s 120m2 sections are not workable. Which gives me some concern that a housing spokesman for Labour has no idea. So if 120m2 are not workable what does that do to the costings and ability to deliver $300k.
                      For such a major policy there should have been more thought into the workability of it.
                      Make housing affordability IMO restrict bank lending practices, limit deductibility of interest for investments, cgt , non resident buying (Not sure how you do this), increase HNZ stock as a few suggestions,

                    • pete

                      Rudman comments appear lacking as he has not addressed anything regarding the cost to develop land, town planning requirements, time to earth work and complete the civils and where is the land and the difficulty in producing small sections.

                      Exactly. He also doesn’t seem to appreciate that the buyer demand is for houses with a bit of space. There are plenty of apartments of the dimensions he’s talking about, and they are already pretty cheap, but not many families want them.

                    • pete

                      See my comment earlier. It’s the freakin government, they’re not subservient to local councils.

                      Just because you’ve bought into the ideology that says the government has to hobble itself to “compete” with the private sector doesn’t mean the rest of us are so blinded.

                      So, you’re saying that the government does have to work to the existing council constraints, just as developers have to do now, or not? Because if you’re saying they don’t, then you’re acknowledging existing regulation is a problem affecting affordability.

                      I haven’t bought into an ideology. I must work within existing law. So does the government. If you see the existing law as having a “hobbling” effect on low priced development, then we’re in agreement.

                      You’ve just admitted existing regulation is the problem, which you expect the government to change. Great. Developers welcome that, too.

        • Herodotus 10.2.1.2

          “Cost price” is misleading any accountant could make the cost fit the answer. How can in 2012 anyone comment on what the cost price of a policy that will not be known for 4 years ??
          Especially as what is being promoted is not compliant with council policy, and if implemented who pays for the new infrastructure required???
          What is the cost and dimensions for a 3,4 or 5 bedroom property ??
          Spend the resources on HNZ stock
          Where is the detail and answers to valid questions a strawman policy as it stands. Great headline but no substance

      • Draco T Bastard 10.2.2

        90m house is perfectly fine for raising children in.

        • Puddleglum 10.2.2.1

          I live in a 73m^2 house and we have a daughter. It can be a bit tight but that’s partly because we still have furniture from when we lived in a bigger house.

          I think the trick is to have a pretty big living space and minimise bedroom size. We also have an (attached) outside laundry and, up until a few years ago, an outside toilet – but I think the outside laundry is part of the calculation of the floor space.

          If we had two children we could try bunks but I guess there would be a point when we’d need an extra room (we could take some room off the living room/lounge I guess – it’s quite big, but then that would cramp the living space). 

  11. I think the policy is a clear sign of how things have changed over the last 30 years.

    I imagine that if Roger Douglas had thought of this policy back then he would have been very keen on it. It would have fitted his purposes very well.

    First, it would – like family support that he introduced – have looked ‘leftist’ by targeting the deserving ‘poor/first home buyer’, those in need, etc. and so gained the support of liberals.

    Second, it provides opportunities for the private sector to benefit from taxpayer money rather than citizens benefiting directly without the market mediating the benefit.

    Third, it weans people off the expectation that they can, collectively (in this case via the state apparatus) provide non-market solutions to social, health, etc. problems.

    It seems we are all neo-liberals now. 

    I would have thought that the best way to reduce demand in the housing market was to provide people the option of having secure dwelling outside the market.

    This seems like a lot of money to put into a market-based solution – money which could have supported various forms of social and community and cooperative housing initiatives (not just state houses) which would provide innovative options and models for the future concerning how we house ourselves in ways that provide a buffer against the inevitable trend towards un-affordability in the market.

    Increasing benefits and wages would help those who remain in the housing market to meet market prices.

    In combination, such broad economic policy changes could help alleviate the affordability issue without directly having the state operate in the market.

    I’m happy to be convinced otherwise and/or to be shown to be economically naive. Always happy to learn.

    • Saarbo 11.1

      Interesting thoughts P. I need to read the details of the policy but I think it comes back to cost. I agree with your 3 points though:

       First, it would – like family support that he introduced – have looked ‘leftist’ by targeting the deserving ‘poor/first home buyer’, those in need, etc. and so gained the support of liberals.
      Second, it provides opportunities for the private sector to benefit from taxpayer money rather than citizens benefiting directly without the market mediating the benefit.
      Third, it weans people off the expectation that they can, collectively (in this case via the state apparatus) provide non-market solutions to social, health, etc. problems.
      It seems we are all neo-liberals now. 

      • Puddleglum 11.1.1

        Thanks Saarbo.

        Yes, I understand the cost argument – building the same number of state houses, for example, over the ten years would be prohibitively expensive under current fiscal and economic settings/conditions.

        But I think the argument from cost actually takes as given the economic structures and assumptions that arise from seeing this as primarily a ‘market failure’ issue.

        It isn’t – it’s a social failure issue. Our society has allowed significant numbers of people to live in unsanitary, overcrowded conditions and/or be exposed to crippling rents.

        Once it is seen primarily as a ‘social failure’ issue then it opens the door to thinking about solutions in terms of ‘new’ forms of social organisation, rather than tweaking the market. The cost calculation would then change, presumably (and I mean that in a strictly economic/financial sense rather than in terms of social costs).

        • vto 11.1.1.1

          you’re right puddleglum, housing is a social issue.

          Televisions and cars and x-boxes and movies and fancy shirts and gadgets are market issues and the market can be left to deal with all that silly stuff.

          But housing is without doubt a social issue. How can we sit by while our neighbours live in cold, unsanitary, etc homes? It is appalling. It is also appalling that so many people see it as a market issue (take note Gerry Brownlee on your approach to east Chch residents plight, you despicable man)

          Basic necessities of life are social issues. That so many do not see or recognise that in their political outlooks is a sad indictment on our current times.

          So this sort of policy is entirely justified and can be defended until our dying days. Labour has no choice but to head down this path and it should do so with increasing vigour and determination.

        • Draco T Bastard 11.1.1.2

          Once it is seen primarily as a ‘social failure’ issue then it opens the door to thinking about solutions in terms of ‘new’ forms of social organisation, rather than tweaking the market.

          Agreed but Labour are trying very hard to make the market work and thus they put in place policies that prop-up the market such as this Kiwibuild BS.

        • rosy 11.1.1.3

          “Once it is seen primarily as a ‘social failure’ issue then it opens the door to thinking about solutions in terms of ‘new’ forms of social organisation, rather than tweaking the market”

          Yes, housing in New Zealand is a social failure and also a market failure – there is demand for affordable housing but the market can’t meet it. This policy addresses the market failure in affordable housing. That’s all. It can’t be seen as a full housing policy.

          Third, it weans people off the expectation that they can, collectively (in this case via the state apparatus) provide non-market solutions to social, health, etc. problems

          This is really important, and a problem with targeted assistance in any form. Targeted assistance can lack legitimacy and lead to stigmatisation of those receiving the assistance (one of the strong arguments for a universal income). In housing this failure of targeting is also really clear to people who have been around long enough to see the move from state housing changing from helping families into homes to the state housing being the last resort for the homeless.

          In the more successful countries, overall social policy itself has been universalistic, and targeting has been be used as simply one instrument for making universalism effective; this is what Theda Skocpol has referred as “targeting within universalism”, in which extra benefits are
          directed to low-income groups within the context of a universal policy design (Skocpol 1990)
          and involves the fine-tuning of what are fundamentally universalist policies. (p16)

          The above quote comes from a UN paper on targeting vs. universalism that argues policy assistance to reduce poverty in developing countries has been shown time and again to fail to achieve it’s target when compared to universal assistance. I believe the same holds true in the housing market. This Labour policy should have State housing in the mix to make it a policy of the left by establishing a universal rather than targeted policy (were all in this together).

          It’s interesting that the policy is drawing on the resources of the State to target to people who are not the poorest. I’m still trying to get my head around why they’ve done this. If an extra dollop of State/social housing was included it would make it a universal, and therefore (if the about quote is to believed) more legitimate policy that actually raises the standard of living for those most at risk of being homeless without stigmatising them.

          I’s sort of exploring ideas here. I live in Vienna and see the results of State intervention in the housing market everyday. It has not become the most livable city in the world by leaving housing to the free market. The State (local not national) is heavily involved in the housing market – and has been since the 1930s. Today the Viennese are looking at similar problems to Auckland – a prime city, growing fast, with a large immigrant population. The State continues to take a hands on role is planning and managing big housing developments (I mean projects that delivers thousands of homes, not just a few dozen here and there) that include private homes, private rentals and affordable and rent-controlled housing. But it does draw on the resources of the market to realise these developments. I’m trying to get a handle on how it all works together, but most stuff is written in German. One day soon I’ll have very fixed ideas on housing policy, at the moment it’s a bit difficult to work through but wanted to put my 2cents worth in from a different perspective.

          Anyway, in terms of a social-democratic policy that helps the poorest, this policy fails. In terms of a universal policy that demonstrates the State can intervene in market failures it is a good thing. i.e. that it intervenes on behalf of people who are not the poorest would not a problem if it it were a universal policy. But it’s not. It’s sort of an inverse targeting. A more complete housing policy should use the resources of the State and to integrate State/social housing within the housing policy, not as some additional targeted policy somewhere down the line (if there are plans for social housing, that is).

  12. gobsmacked 12

    I’m afraid it’s a little bit “Apart from that, how did you enjoy the play, Mrs Lincoln?”

    Yes, there has been positive media coverage of KiwiBuild. Even critical coverage is useful, because it turns attention to housing, and Labour can engage the public on an issue of their choosing, not National’s. It’s a chance for Labour to do what they want they need to: “move on” and “focus on what matters”, etc. Talk policy, talk about an issue that matters to millions.

    But … but … no round-up of media coverage can credibly exclude TV. And no round-up of commentary on a policy can credibly exclude the policy’s salesman.

    For every voter reading an in-depth ODT column by Peter Lyons, there’s a dozen more watching the evening news. Elections are (sadly) presidential, and the leader’s policy pitch is the only one most voters will notice. What they noticed last night was an embarrassment.

    I appreciate that you want to be positive, Anthony, and so do most of us, but if we’re going to talk about Labour policies in the media, then let’s talk about Labour policies in the media. Denial won’t work.

  13. $300,000 still five times the average wage proves our wages really need to go up and fast

    • Colonial Viper 13.1

      Average wage is just less than $50,000 so that factor is 6x not 5x.

      • lefty 13.1.1

        $300,000 still five times the average wage proves our wages really need to go up and fast

        The people who most need housing don’t bring in anywhere near the average wage.

        Most full time workers in New Zealanders get paid much less than the average wage and on top of that there are many who can only get part time or casual work.

        Then there are all those who can get not work at all, or are on benefits for other reasons.

        No matter how loose the criteria was they wouldn’t be likely to get a loan for a house because they have no secure income – and they would be foolish to take it if they did because it would end up becoming a mortgagee sale.

        In fact housing loans to people who couldn’t service them was what precipitated the GFC.

        Our politicians still seem to think being out of work or stuck in low paid insecure work is unusual or temporary.

        That is so last century.

        And why a third of the population don’t bother to vote for people who refuse to recognise they even exist, except for when they want to find someone to blame for the failure of their economic theories.

        • Colonial Viper 13.1.1.1

          So let’s just admit that KB is targetted at people with solidly paying jobs, $50,000 to $60,000 pa say, and does sweet very little for those earning under $20/hr.

          • McFlock 13.1.1.1.1

            Household income.
                     
            But it will also employ thousands.
               
            And it’s not Labour’s only policy.  

          • Te Reo Putake 13.1.1.1.2

            Well, to put it simply, its useful to anyone who can afford twenty bones a week ($1,042.86 pa). The government then kicks in $521.43, a 50% RoI. That $521 used to be twice as much under Labour, by the way.
             
            So, still useful at $30-50 k pa for a lot of kiwis, except perhaps for those of you living in that Auckland.

  14. Tracey 14

    To get land at those prices will be further outside Auckland SO it needs to be coupled with infrastructure of the public transport type… and let’s not copy Rodney District’s sewerage debacle…d

    • vto 14.1

      Tracey (and others above). Infrastructure is to a large extent a red herring. For example, it is usually cheaper to instal a sewer system servicing just the particular development than it is to hook up to the local Council one (they charge totally exhorbitant costs).

      • BM 14.1.1

        Which is the reason houses are so expensive, horrendous council fees.

        All that has to be done is to lower council fees, you don’t need Kiwi Build.

        • felix 14.1.1.1

          Yeah, developers would definitely pass that saving on to the buyer, especially in a housing shortage.

          *facepalm* (your face, my palm)

          • BM 14.1.1.1.1

            Do you know anything about building?
            Have you had anything to do with the construction industry?

            • Colonial Viper 14.1.1.1.1.1

              All you need is to be a capitalist to figure it out…

              • BM

                I spent a good 15 years working with and around spec builders, housing companies, developers so I probably have a bit more knowledge than Felix.

                Back in 2000 you could buy a 800m2 section in a good area for 60-70k,
                now you’re paying in the vicinity of 250k upwards.
                Cost of building the house has barely changed.

                All the cost is in the land.Council fees, regulations, slowness are the reasons land costs have exploded.

                Fix that and you’re 90% of the way there.

                • felix

                  Makes no sense at all. Regulations don’t push up the cost of land.

                  • BM

                    More the development of the land, zillions of hoops to jump through.

                    Not land cost, but do know you now need to erect scaffolding for a one story dwelling, crazy.

                    • felix

                      I agree some aspects are way over-regulated, and often for stupid reasons. It particularly bothers me how much extra expense has been lumped on to cover the arses of the manufacturers who bought us the shit materials that caused the leaky buildings debacle and the councils that ok’d it. (Stainless nails and treated framing? Give me a break, it was never a problem until some bright spark decided to make the cladding out of cardboard).

                      I see the point you’re making. I do think it’s a little overstated though.

                    • BM

                      I think Branz didn’t copped enough punishment in the leaky homes bs.

                      Most builders were just following branz approved methods, for example branz said it was acceptable to use zinc coated corner reinforcement in exterior plaster systems
                      Surprise, it started rusting a couple of years down the track, allowing water to get in behind the cladding, so they switched to stainless.
                      Tough luck for the people who had zinc though.

                    • felix

                      Yep, and who owns branz? The same companies that manufacture the products they’re certifying. And have a look at how branz changed their ownership & governance structure in the early 2000s, effectively putting a firewall between the corporate and operational divisions of the organisation to limit corporate responsibility for their dodginess.

            • felix 14.1.1.1.1.2

              Yeah I do and yeah I have. And yeah council fees are too high.

              But that’s not what’s causing a situation where ordinary people can’t afford a home and only an imbecile would say it was.

  15. tracey 15

    Vto

    You may be right but have you read about the debacle north of auckland. However its transport that interests me from the outskirts of auckland.

  16. Wayne (a different one) 16

    Won’t work, can’t work – Mr Shearer and his advisers have not done their math. 100,000 homes over 10 years = 10,000 per year, or 192 per week, 27 each day, for 10 years. Please tell us Mr Shearer, where is the labour going to come from to build these homes when we are already struggling in Christchurch to secure the workforce to undertake the re-build their.

    In addition, the economics don’t add up $300,000 house & land packages, really! Are we looking at the Chatham Islands?

    Its a dumber than dumb proposal, thought up on the “hoof” by people with no economic or strategic nouce.

    • rod 16.1

      Hey Wayne, is your surname Kerr?

      • Wayne (a different one) 16.1.1

        No Rod it’s not – so can’t accommodate your warped sense of humour unfortunately.

        But that aside, tell me Rod – you have obviously bought into this “wacky” housing proposal, so let’s hear how it’s going too work – because I sure as hell can’t work it out, we await with baited breath for your enlightened perspective.

        Or are you another sheep follower, excuse the pun! Who just simply follows the socialist doctrine, no matter what is put up?

        • Colonial Viper 16.1.1.1

          What do you mean “where is the labour coming from”?

          We’ve got tens of thousands of unemployed looking for work. Building 27 houses per day with that kind of resource is a piece of piss.

          A year to get geared up with training and what not, then full bore into it.

    • McFlock 16.2

      wow – someone gave the little parrots a line. “Wayne” is the third dropkick to use basic math and absolutely no economic or practical knowledge. 
           
      If this is typical of the arguments against, it’s a fair indication that it’s a practical policy.

      • felix 16.2.1

        It’s exactly the same line as last night, pretty much word for word.

        Sauce?

      • Wayne (a different one) 16.2.2

        Really? already the more enlightened Economists are seriously questioning the economics, let alone the basic strategic logistics.

        This is nothing more than another classic “voter carrott” like WFF and Student Loans – brilliant Labour policies that have crippled the country economically.

        McFlock, your name does you justice – “Flockin dumb”.

        • felix 16.2.2.1

          Hey Wayne, can you tell us where you got the sentence that ends with “10 years” please?

        • PlanetOrphan 16.2.2.2

          Student loans educated a Generation Wayne including u probably, freakin steal the money and run Y don’t ya.

          Our kids deserve to go to University Wayne, that’s Expensive Wayne.

          What’s your beloved Gnats’ doing to help your kids go to Uni Wayne?

          • Wayne (a different one) 16.2.2.2.1

            No orphan, didn’t go to University, so not one of those bluddgers, unlike you and your family obviously – hand out for all you can get.

            You Socialists dont get it -you are stuck in the welfare mentality, that’s why you are always bleeting about your lot – snivelling, envious knockers .

            Worked all my life (44 years), still am and, never once asked the Govt for a hand out.

            Look at the current state of the World and, ask which country’s economy is holding up very well – answer NZ – thats why our dollar is so strong – investors see NZ as a safe, stable economy.

            As for the 170,000 unemployed – perhaps these are some of those that Labour hid under the sickness benefit and ACC and National have put them correctly where they should be. But the flip side of the unemployment list, is there are a record numbr of jobs on Seek etc. So you tell me!

            • Pascal's bookie 16.2.2.2.1.1

              5:36 PM This is nothing more than another classic “voter carrott” like WFF and Student Loans – brilliant Labour policies that have crippled the country economically.

              6:02 PM Look at the current state of the World and, ask which country’s economy is holding up very well – answer NZ – thats why our dollar is so strong – investors see NZ as a safe, stable economy

              Smarter morans please.

            • Descendant Of Smith 16.2.2.2.1.2

              National must be currently hiding plenty of people on Sickness Benefit because numbers have gone up significantly under National.

              2007 49,489
              2011 53,111

              Add that to the ones they are hiding in Australia….

              And sure our economy is holding up well – but only for those of us who have managed to keep a job. There’s plenty of people suffering but yeah it’s their own fault ain’t it.

              The same people who don’t work here want to work when they go to Oz. Fuck it is magic how moving to Oz miraculously turns you from a bludger to a noble worker. Someone should develop some “substance of Oz” pills if that’s all it takes.

              A flight to Oz to make this miracle happen is cheaper than a boot-camp.

              I know plenty of people who lost their jobs in recent times and they all lost their jobs because there was no work, no contracts, cancelled contracts or the boss ripped the firm off.

              Not one I know lost their job cause they didn’t want to work.

              • Excellent comment, Descendant of Smith.

                My nephew was one of those who found the miraculous Australian cure for his bludging. He had a contract/temporary job (in fact, a series) that finished. He looked for work for several months with no luck.

                Then, in February this year went to Perth and got a job within two weeks that paid $10 per hour more (from $18 to $28) doing much the same work.

                He must have suddenly become hyper-motivated during the flight over … or something. 

            • Draco T Bastard 16.2.2.2.1.3

              You may not have noticed wayne but the worlds economy is collapsing purely due to the policies that you advocate for.

            • Tracey 16.2.2.2.1.4

              If your children went to school, you had a “hand out”, if you drive or walk or cycle on roads, you had a “hand out”. Ever gone to A & E? A hand out?

            • PlanetOrphan 16.2.2.2.1.5

              Counts for polytech to off course buddy, never went to UNI myself.
              BloodyOrphans don’t deserve it M8! , just ask the Gnats!

        • McFlock 16.2.2.3

          ” the more enlightened Economists” – lol. 
               
          Actually, Wayne, the goal is realistic given the concomitant boost in trades apprenticeships and other roles. In fact, capacity is not likely to be a problem, given the 170,000 unemployed who are celebrating dunnokeyo’s “brighter future”.

          You want more basic math: if the programme started today, there are almost two unemployed workers who can work on each house for the next three years. Quibble all you want about skillsets, qualifications and supervision: there is no shortage of site labourers at any rate.
                    
          You know what, it is a voter carrot: making society better, giving people jobs and control of their own homes, raising their standards of living… only a fucking tory would think that improving the lives of hundreds of thousands of NZers is a bad thing.
                   
          We’ve had enough tory “enlightened” economic management. Those who haven’t lost their homes, left the country, or died could do with some improvement in their lives. 

      • David H 16.2.3

        ” we await with baited breath for your enlightened perspective.” Who the fuck is WE Wayne?? You shore your last name aint Kerr?? A Wayne?

        • Wayne (a different one) 16.2.3.1

          You sound a lovely chap! Well educated, with an excellent grasp of the english language. You will no doubt go a long way in life with that attitude. But then I expect nothing less from the left!

          • vto 16.2.3.1.1

            Hello Wayne, have read some of your comments above and note an underlying mem perhaps best exposed in this of yours …

            “No orphan, didn’t go to University, so not one of those bluddgers, unlike you and your family obviously – hand out for all you can get.

            You Socialists dont get it -you are stuck in the welfare mentality, that’s why you are always bleeting about your lot – snivelling, envious knockers .

            Worked all my life (44 years), still am and, never once asked the Govt for a hand out.

            Look at the current state of the World and, ask which country’s economy is holding up very well – answer NZ – thats why our dollar is so strong – investors see NZ as a safe, stable economy.”

            A mindset which describes all university attendees (and by implication all higher learning) as bludgers is simply ignorant. Perhaps you should have got out more and done something other than have a job (note the differentiation from work. There are myriad ways to work and contribute to society you do realise. A job is merely one.)

            As for welfare mentality …. try thinking a little more. You may notice a sub-thread down further which covers how housing is a social issue rather than a market issue (despite current political ideology having it otherwise). We all have an obligation to ensure our neighbours, families, friends and wider community are adequately housed. It is entirely different from buying, for example, a television. Man is a social creature and we live in herds. We are not a bunch of individuals.

            It is nothing to do with welfare, it is to do with ensuring that our people are housed. It seems that you don’t care for how people are housed. Government is one form of organisation that can attend to this and that is what they propose.

            As for its feasibility. I have some heavy involvement in this sector and am firmly of the opinion that it can be done. In fact, more than opinion as I have 90m2 pads on my desk right now. I know their cost, I know the land supply issues, the infrastructure issues, the parameters, the margins, the lot.

            But now aint the time to go into the details other than to know it is broadly correct. The issue now is to acknowledge that housing is a social issue, that we have an obligation to house our neighbours adequately, and that this is one way to help. For fucks sake I don’t even normally vote to the left and they are stepping into my sector potentially mucking up my business but I still see that it is good policy – for society and for the economy. And it is achievable.

            I realise it becomes difficult to think in new ways, or even old ways, as age begins to creep up on us, but you should give it a go. The world is a moving beast.

          • McFlock 16.2.3.1.2

            For someone who gets their lines from a greasy cetacean and decides “Flockin dumb” is a sophisticated play on words, it’s a big call to pretend you have the intellectual high ground.
                   
            But I suppose if you view things upside down, from your perspective you’d be Oscar Wilde and Dorothy Parker’s love child. Rather than that of Carrot Top and Tommy Chong’s personae.

    • Hey wayne you can erect a prefab house in 5 days M8

      Can’t be done aye ?, your the bleedin Gnat sheep M8!

    • Draco T Bastard 16.4

      I believe you need this document where it points out that somewhat in excess of 30000 per year were consented in the mid 2000s. Of course, just because they were consented doesn’t mean that they were built but it’s a fairly good bet that most of them were.

  17. Draco T Bastard 17

    This is due to our monetary system only increasing money supply through debt which means that growth in the economy can only happen through debt. Kiwibuild has got close to zero to do with building affordable homes and everything to do with getting people to borrow again.

    • AAMC 17.1

      despite the fact we already have the second highest aggregate debt on the planet and haven’t deleveraged like others have started to. We need a jubilee before we should get people borrowing again, or the whole thing’ll pop.

  18. tracey 18

    Bm, i have alot to do with the construction industry and the developers dont suffer from the council fees, the owner/builders do. Developers get a dedicated council team, fast track, opportunity to pay fees off over months not in one go. Developers wont pass on the saving but it would impact in a small way on tge decreasing number of owner/builders.

  19. tracey 19

    How do you suggest the shortage is dealt with wayne?

    I have read some national party naysaying which is ironic coming from the no policy government.

    • Wayne (a different one) 19.1

      Well tracey, certainly not through building “cheap crap” housing in ghettos, because that’s what you will get ultimately.

      If Councils were forced to release more land for urban housing, this will in time force land values down, which is where the significant cost lies.

      In addition, from my perspective, we need more competition in the hosing supplies market, Fletchers dominate and thus control the pricing. Look at Australia, more competition = better value for money.

      And lastly, we need a strong economy, which in my humble opinion the National Government are really focussing hard on – because that will in turn equal a better working enviroment for all, including higher wages, so people can afford housing.

      But I will ask you this, where are the 400k homeless people living currently that require these houses?

      • PlanetOrphan 19.1.1

        A Strong economy Wayne? the Gnats’ are “Focusing”?, 170,000 unemployed and rising Wayne.

        And it aint the freakin GFC Wayne, it’s thet Gnats’ Wayne.

      • Tracey 19.1.2

        “If Councils were forced to release more land for urban housing, this will in time force land values down, which is where the significant cost lies.” Council is part of the policy Wayne.

        I agree about Fletchers, they are heavily subsidised by our governments…. oh no one calls it a subsidy but it is.

        “because that will in turn equal a better working enviroment for all, including higher wages, so people can afford housing.” How’s this going so far after 4 years? So far just legislation to lower wages? Also, how much have real wages increased over the last 20 years? You are dreaming if you believe this government is about higher wages.

        What is your definition of a strong economy, and how do you achieve that?

        As for your statement about 400k homeless people, are you saying there isn’t a housing shortgaae, or just not as big as Labour intends trying to address? You don’t live in Auckland do you?

  20. Brendon Harre 20

    Councils and the RMA rules that central government have imposed on them cause 80% of the increase in the cost of building new houses. The other 20% is that the building supplies duopoly hasn’t been broken up. The cost of new houses flows through to existing house prices and rents.

    Delays in getting consents mean developers with building permits have a local monopoly http://www.newgeography.com/content/002471-florida-repeals-smart-growth-law .

    So house prices are the result of bureaucratic monopoly times building duopoly times developers monopoly. With the banks and existing property owners being cheerleaders for their own selfish reasons.

    The reason it is so hard to reform this rigged system is the above vested interests are so powerful.

  21. Tracey 21

    Brendon, am not disputing your figures but am interested at how you reached them?

    “cause 80% of the increase in the cost of building new houses.”

    I am currently applying for a RC and then a BC and am interested in your breakdown.

  22. Draco T Bastard 22

    http://transportblog.co.nz/2012/11/18/rodney-hide-redux/

    The policy works by the council imposing a huge number of planning rules which limit density: height limits, density controls, yard controls, setback requirements, single-use rules and so forth. In the places where people most want to live and where prices are increasing the fastest, the planning rules actively stop the construction of more housing. It’s the planning rules that make building apartments, terraced houses and townhouses in the inner suburbs so difficult.

  23. lorraine 23

    Auckland council is developing guidelines for medium density housing. Some apartments are affordable to first home buyers at $300. I don’t think the Labour policy is about building apartments, terraced houses or townhouses. They are talking about detached houses with a plot of land. $300 all up for that is not affordable in Auckland or other places with a housing shortage.

  24. Populuxe1 24

    What I want to know is what will prevent this resulting in a Clinton-esque real estate bubble?

Important links

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • Way opening for April Sun in Cuba
    The United States of America’s President’s historic announcement yesterday to restore diplomatic ties with Cuba should be applauded by the New Zealand Government. The announcement marks a turning point in more than five decades of hostility between the two countries...
    frogblog
  • Hard News: We’re in this together
    A couple of months ago, the excellent Katharine Viner, deputy editor of The Guardian and editor of Guardian Australia, gave a speech called The rise of the reader: journalism in the age of the open web. It voiced many of the...
    Public Address
  • The art of persistence
    I’m an Aucklander who has to travel into the city every day for work. As […] The post The art of persistence appeared first on Connected....
    Potentia
  • The inverted ethics of doxxing?
    Came across this word “doxxing” lately. According to Wikipedia it refers to “the Internet-based practice of researching and broadcasting personally identifiable information about an individual.” My introduction to this new word was in a discussion of the ethics of identifying...
    Open Parachute
  • The inverted ethics of doxxing?
    Came across this word “doxxing” lately. According to Wikipedia it refers to “the Internet-based practice of researching and broadcasting personally identifiable information about an individual.” My introduction to this new word was in a discussion of the ethics of identifying...
    Open Parachute
  • John Key’s war on P is a failure
    Back in 2009, John Key launched a "war on P", in the form of his Methamphetamine Action Plan. An important part of the plan was regular progress reports, tracking the price, purity and availability of methamphetamine, so we could see...
    No Right Turn
  • Time to cut out the middle-woman
    Four days before the Scottish Independence Referendum, the UK's supposedly neutral monarch intervened, telling the Scots to "think very carefully about the future". While cloaked as a "private exchange", it has now emerged that the whole thing was scripted by...
    No Right Turn
  • The courts and the Public Records Act
    Nicky Hager won an important victory in his case against the police yesterday, forcing discovery of the police's internal working documents about the decision to apply for and execute a search warrant against him. While some of the documents will...
    No Right Turn
  • Deficit deficit deficit deficit deficit deficit deficit tax cuts!
    Bill English’s laser-like focus on delivering tax cuts in 2017 whether it is a good idea or not reveals a deep problem that right-leaning parties have with being responsible. The whole idea behind deficit spending, which National has done a...
    Polity
  • Does intensification increase traffic congestion?
    Earlier this week, I took a look at the relationship between congestion and density. I was investigating geographer Phil McDermott’s claim, based on some dodgy data comparing between cities, that increasing density would increase congestion. Economists know that it is...
    Transport Blog
  • Busytown: Tell You What: A Nonfiction Giveaway!
    When Susanna Andrew and I sat down to write our proposal for that old-fashioned thing, a book on paper, we wanted to make the book we wanted to read. What we wanted was to sit down each summer to a...
    Public Address
  • LMAO
    Andrea Vance reports / mocks: Acronyms will go MIA in Defence Force briefing papers as new minister Gerry Brownlee says NOMW (not on my watch). Brownlee has ordered military top brass to remove all acronyms from their ministerial documents as...
    Polity
  • What do plummeting milk prices mean for our fresh water?
    This year milk prices have soured like a bottle left in the sun. There has been much wailing and gnashing of teeth about the economic impact of the fall in prices, but what, if anything does it mean for our...
    Gareth’s World
  • Gordon Campbell on the Pakistan schoolchildren killings
    The slaughter of the children in Pakistan is incomprehensibly awful. On the side, it has thrown a spotlight onto something that’s become a pop cultural meme. Fans of the Homeland TV series will be well aware of the collusion between...
    Gordon Campbell
  • Cuba libre
    President Obama announced this morning: President Barack Obama announced the United States would restore diplomatic relations it severed with Cuba more than 50 years ago, drawing resistance from lawmakers opposed to reconciling with the communist-run island. Apparently those opponents include...
    Polity
  • Find the perfect gift for the gender stereotype in your life
    Trademe has decided to make your holiday shopping easier with a handy-dandy gift finder. Just plug in the vital statistics of the person you’re shopping for, and voila! It’s the perfect tool to reduce the stress of the gifting season....
    On the Left
  • Auckland housing facts
    Statistics New Zealand has published a new study on housing trends in Auckland. It is sobering stuff. Here are the core findings: Since the mid 1980s, home ownership has plummeted in Auckland even faster than across the rest of the...
    Polity
  • Minister ducking for cover over ‘Diplomat Case’
    Apparently the Ministerial Inquiry into what now seems to be being referred to as ‘The Diplomat Case’ ( I have a few other names for it) has been completed and is in front of Foreign Affairs Minister McCully. Initial Reports seem to...
    frogblog
  • An economic comedy in four acts
    Scene IBill English bounces out of his Beehive bed with a surplus of energy, yet feeling rather lacklustre can only pour himself a glass of milk and drag himself to the balcony looking out over central Wellington. He glances over at...
    Pundit
  • Ten best paid bosses in tertiary education
    And their lowest paid colleagues Tertiary Update Vol 17 No 44 Last week the State Services Commission announced the total remuneration for chief executives and vice-chancellors at public tertiary education institutions. Prof Stuart McCutcheon earned at least $660,000. That is...
    Tertiary Education Union
  • Ten most popular stories of 2014
    This Tertiary Update’s top ten most read stories for the year included, at number ten, the massive job cuts at Manukau Institute of Technology and at number two the petition opposing those job cuts. Two more of our most read...
    Tertiary Education Union
  • Ten branches that recruited the most new TEU members
    Waikato Institute of Technology – of 142 members in September 41 joined in the last 12 months = 28.9 percent Tai Poutini Polytechnic – of 54 members in September 14 joined in the last 12 months = 25.9 percent NorthTec...
    Tertiary Education Union
  • Ten rights the government will take away next year
    …but that TEU plans to protect Next year several new laws will come into force that will remove some of your rights. It is more important than ever that you protect your rights by being active in a strong union...
    Tertiary Education Union
  • Ten Te Kaupapa Whaioranga wishes for the New Year
    For the tertiary education worker who has already got a partridge in a pear tree, and a pair of socks, here are other ten things they’ll be looking for. Sadly you will need to campaign for them rather than be gifted...
    Tertiary Education Union
  • Ten of our favourite TEU photos for the year
    ...
    Tertiary Education Union
  • City Centre Priority Cycle Routes
    An update to the Auckland City Centre Advisory Board (page 25) provides some new information about improvements to cycling planned for the CBD and include some artist impressions of just what they might look like – although unfortunately because it comes from a...
    Transport Blog
  • TISA text: US threat to privacy, civil rights, data security
    Press Release – AFTINET Leaked US proposals in the Trade in the secret Services (TISA) negotiations include rules that would threaten privacy and civil rights protections for digital personal data Dr Patricia Ranald, Coordinator of the Australian Fair Trade and...
    Its our future
  • Leaked TISA text exposes US threat to privacy, data security
    Press Release – Professor Jane Kelsey The US is demanding that New Zealand and other countries accept sweeping rules that would override privacy protections for digitised personal and other data, according to Professor Jane Kelsey from the University of Auckland.17...
    Its our future
  • Males only?
    Like Vaughan Rowsell I get asked to facilitate or be on panels and speak at events a fair bit. Actually not quite like Vaughan – he’s incredibly popular, and for good reason. Vaughan’s publicly announced that he will not accept...
    Lance Wiggs
  • An OTL milestone
    I have no idea how this happened, but this is the 100th post on On The Left! Things are probably going to slow down a bit around here over the holiday break, but thanks to all our bloggers and readers...
    On the Left
  • It’s nearly Foodmass
    Christmas is coming. The halls are decked with boughs of holly (plastic), and decorated with snow (artificial). Tips for Christmas (stress-free) have been appearing since November. Children are over-excited and desperate shoppers are looking for the perfect presents for people...
    Pundit
  • No justice in the UK
    Four years ago, G4S guards killed Jimmy Mubenga by restraining him inappropriately during a deportation - effectively asphyixiating him. But today, a British jury refused to convict them:Three private security guards who restrained the Angolan deportee Jimmy Mubenga have been...
    No Right Turn
  • John Key wants arbitrary detention
    That's the only conclusion that can be drawn from his comments today about the need to lower the threshold for detention:Prime Minister John Key said the Sydney siege gunman highlighted the conundrum for authorities over protecting citizens against potential terrorism...
    No Right Turn
  • Futility: Educating an IED
    Through this year, I have sadly been lured into spending energy trying to teach Martyn Bradbury about modern political science, and what it means for modern politics. He appeared misinformed about what polls are and how they work, so I...
    Polity
  • The OIA Review
    Yesterday, the Ombudsman announced that they had begun their review of OIA compliance. They'll be looking closely at 12 central government agencies, and surveying 63 more, as well as all 27 Ministerial offices. They'll also be soliciting submissions from the...
    No Right Turn
  • Biosecurity it’s everyone’s responsibility
    Biosecurity costs New Zealand millions of dollars in attempting pest eradication and much more in ongoing management of pests in farming, horticulture, beekeeping and conservation, as well as in our own backyards and recreation areas. More work must happen at...
    frogblog
  • Equality, Efficiency and Economic Theory (Social Journal Europe)
    Dani RodrikIn the pantheon of economic theories, the tradeoff between equality and efficiency used to occupy an exalted position. The American economist Arthur Okun, whose classic work on the topic is called Equality and Efficiency: The Big Tradeoff, believed that public...
    the Irascible Curmudgeon
  • New Fisk
    Peshawar school attack: Massacre of the innocents born of ambivalence towards Taliban...
    No Right Turn
  • How we pay for a universal basic income – Whiteboard Wednesday.
    Lots of people like the idea of an Unconditional Basic Income (UBI), but can we afford it as a nation? In this Whiteboard Wednesday Geoff looks at the three parts of the Big Kahuna package – Unconditional Basic Income, Flat...
    Gareth’s World
  • This will go down well
    Back in September, Mexican police arrested a group of 43 student teachers who had been travelling to Iguala for a protest against the local government. They handed them over to a local drug gang, who murdered them. Since the massacre,...
    No Right Turn
  • AT Metro Launched
    Last week we mentioned about how Auckland Transport was launching a new PT brand. That occurred yesterday and as well as new look buses, they have also launched a new brand for their public transport operations – AT Metro. Auckland Transport has...
    Transport Blog
  • Whales, dolphins, and ‘gunshots’
    I've just returned from seven days on board SV Vega as part of a small team monitoring the impacts of seismic testing on marine mammals off the west coast of Northland. No research has been done in this area, so...
    Greenpeace NZ blog
  • Meat workers need Jobs that Count
    The CTU is supporting todays Meat Workers Union campaign to combat insecure work in a core New Zealand export industry. Photo:  ...
    CTU
  • 2014: A Venture Capital Odyssey
    Fresh off the wire from Hong Kong, from your friends and mine at io9: Hong Kong based venture capital firm Deep Knowledge Ventures (DKV) has appointed a machine learning program to its board. Called VITAL, it's an "equal member" that...
    Polity
  • Buzzfeed takes the Herald
    Here's a Herald article this week, titled (I kid you not): 20 somewhat horrible things I do to my kids that I don't feel guilty about [Facepalm] I want the Herald to be good. I really do. I know some...
    Polity
  • Sad
    There's a lot of non-cheery news out there in the lead up to Christmas. There's the Taliban school massacre, the Sydney siege, the US Torture Report, and - at a much lower level, and closer to home - the Treasury's...
    Polity
  • “I said surface, not surplus”
    Here are ten explanations, excuses or distractions Bill English might like to employ over the coming days in response to news that his long promised budget surplus looks to have disappeared....
    Imperator Fish
  • Talking terror
    [Content note: discussion of terrorism and violence] Last month I wrote about the aims of ISIS as NZ’s terror legislation ramped up, how their structure and organisation has become almost impossibly fluid, adapted to social media and the internet in...
    On the Left
  • Letter to the editor – Time to milk a tragedy again, by our Dear Leader
    . . from: Frank Macskasy <fmacskasy@gmail.com> to: Dominion Post <letters@dompost.co.nz> date: Tue, Dec 16, 2014 subject: Letter to the editor . The Editor Dominion Post . Once again, predictably, our esteemed Prime Minister has exploited a tragic situation for his...
    Frankly Speaking
  • Hard News: Word of the Year 2014: #dirtypolitics
    A transient political scandal which has been dealt with, resolved and thoroughly moved-on-from with no hard feelings at all has somehow been named as the Public Address Word of the Year 2014."I honestly can't understand how this has happened," said...
    Public Address
  • Govt spend on transport out of step with reality
    The National Government is planning to allocate ever increasing amounts of taxpayer funding to build expensive new motorways despite record numbers of New Zealanders flocking to buses and trains, said the Green Party. The Government released its Government Policy Statement...
    Greens
  • Solar homes stymied by Govt inaction
    Government inaction is allowing the big power companies to discourage the nascent solar power sector, the Green Party said today. Green Party MP Gareth Hughes launched a petition today calling on the Government to empower the Electricity Authority to act...
    Greens
  • Foreign buyers for iconic island must add value
    Labour will look very closely at any Overseas Investment Office application to purchase Pakatoa Island if it is not bought by a Kiwi, says Labour’s Land information Spokesperson Stuart Nash. “Pakatoa is an iconic island in the middle of Hauraki...
    Labour
  • Way opening for April Sun in Cuba
    The United States of America’s President’s historic announcement yesterday to restore diplomatic ties with Cuba should be applauded by the New Zealand Government. The announcement marks a turning point in more than five decades of hostility between the two countries...
    Greens
  • Minister ducking for cover over ‘Diplomat Case’
    Apparently the Ministerial Inquiry into what now seems to be being referred to as ‘The Diplomat Case’ ( I have a few other names for it) has been completed and is in front of Foreign Affairs Minister McCully. Initial Reports seem to...
    Greens
  • Energy users need answers on Vector share plans
    Energy Minister Simon Bridges needs to stop ducking for cover about whether or not the Government will support plans to nationalise and then privatise $2.1 billion of shares in the Auckland Electricity Consumer Trust, Labour's Energy spokesperson Stuart Nash says. “It...
    Labour
  • Turning up the heat on working conditions
    A “Jobs That Count” campaign has the full support of Labour, the party’s Labour Relations spokesperson Iain Lees-Galloway says. Organised by the Meat Workers Union, the campaign aims to put the spotlight on job insecurity in the meat processing industry....
    Labour
  • Biosecurity it’s everyone’s responsibility
    Biosecurity costs New Zealand millions of dollars in attempting pest eradication and much more in ongoing management of pests in farming, horticulture, beekeeping and conservation, as well as in our own backyards and recreation areas. More work must happen at...
    Greens
  • Failure to diversify puts prosperity at risk
    Beyond the news that a long-promised surplus is unlikely, further embarrassment is hidden in the fine print of the half year economic and fiscal update, Labour says. "National’s failure to rebalance the economy is further exposed in projections from its...
    Labour
  • Ombudsman probe targets Ministerial integrity
    John Key is on notice that the entrenched cynical and manipulative abuse of official information requests by his Government will no longer be tolerated, Labour’s Open Government spokesperson Clare Curran says. “The announcement by the Ombudsman of a wide-ranging review...
    Labour
  • Bill English’s face is redder than his books
    The Government owes New Zealanders an apology for failing to deliver the surplus it spent four years and two election campaigns promising, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “Bill English’s face is redder than the Crown accounts. This is the...
    Labour
  • Is the Health Minister accountable to the public? He doesn’t seem to thin...
    Lately I’ve been involved in a sort of farcical standoff with the Health Minister, who seems to be under the illusion that I have no right to ask questions about conflicts involving Health Promotion Agency Board member Katherine Rich, and...
    Greens
  • Irresponsible tax cuts lead to seventh successive deficit
    National's borrowing to pay for cutting the top tax rate was irresponsible and will likely lead to a seventh successive deficit, the Green Party said today. Treasury have forecast a $572 million deficit this year in its Half Year Economic...
    Greens
  • Minister closes down dissent on climate change
    Minister closes down dissent on climate change In a threatening letter to Maori leaders, Minister for Climate Change Tim Groser says he will be requiring future international delegations to toe the party line, Labour’s Climate Change spokesperson Megan Woods says. “In...
    Labour
  • Heartfelt sympathy for Sydneysiders
    The Labour Party has offered its heartfelt sympathy to the people of Sydney after the hostage situation in the city, says Labour’s Acting leader Grant Robertson.  “Our thoughts are with all those who went through this horrific and traumatic experience....
    Labour
  • Farewell at Phillipstown
    Last Wednesday, I attended the farewell for Tony Simpson, Principal of Phillipstown School. It was a very emotional event where many of us in the large crowd shed tears. Bagpipes and tiny tamariki performing kapahaka brought the house down and...
    Greens
  • The CIA Torture Report
    Earlier this week, the United States Select Committee on Intelligence released the Committee Study of the Central Intelligence Agency’s Detention and Interrogation Program.  The report, which was five years in the making, looked into the CIA’s interrogation techniques from 2001...
    Greens
  • Haere Rā 2014
    We’ve almost reached the end of the Parliamentary year so I wanted to take a moment to reflect on some of my highlights of the term in this blog post. It’s been an absolutely hectic year juggling an election campaign...
    Greens
  • Labour applauds High Court decision on Ruataniwha
    Today’s decision by the High Court on the Ruataniwha scheme is a victory for NewZealand’s environmental groups, says Labour’s Conservation spokesperson RuthDyson....
    Labour
  • A welfare system for the 21st Century
    Today Child Poverty Action Group released a background paper on ‘The complexities of ‘relationship’ in the welfare system and the consequences for children.‘ The report includes 16 recommendations to modernise our welfare system which is no longer fit for the...
    Greens
  • Welfare system out of date and out of touch
    A new Child Poverty Action Group report released today highlights another example of how our outmoded social welfare system is harming kids, says Labour’s Social Development Spokesperson Carmel Sepuloni.  “The complexities of how a ‘relationship’ is defined in the welfare...
    Labour
  • NZ should formally recognise Palestine
    New Zealand should follow the lead of Sweden, and now recognise Palestine as a separate state On 30 October, Sweden’s new government formally recognised the state of Palestine, only the second Western country to do so, after Iceland. Down here...
    Greens
  • James Shaw’s adjournment speech on behalf of the Green Party
    It is a great honour for me to speak on behalf of the Green Party in this adjournment debate. I thank my colleagues for the privilege. I became a MP only 12 weeks ago, a period of time that seems...
    Greens
  • Time to end legalised cruelty of factory farms
    We can ensure that animals are kept in safe and ethical conditions. Claims of economic impact and practicality as justification for animal cruelty just don't stack up.Use our easy e-letter to write to the Minister for Primary Industries Nathan Guy...
    Greens
  • Government can’t rely on geothermal to grow itself
    While Electricity Authority figures showing geothermal has risen from the fourth to the second highest source of power generation are a promising sign for a geothermal renaissance, there can be no cause for complacency, Labour’s Energy spokesperson Stuart Nash says....
    Labour
  • Big bickies for bosses despite subpar performance
    While public service workers are experiencing Grinch-like wage increases state sector bosses have pocketed early Christmas presents in the form of whopper pay hikes, Labour’s State Services spokesperson Kris Faafoi says. “Unbelievably State Services Commissioner Iain Rennie got an additional...
    Labour
  • Consent should come before research grants for phosphate mining
      The Government’s decision to make a grant by Callaghan Innovation to Chatham Rock Phosphate is highly questionable, says Labour’s Science spokesperson David Cunliffe.  “The fact is that the company still has to get a marine consent to mine the Chatham...
    Labour
  • A Tale of Two Farms
    Pig farming has yet again been thrust into the public view with two programmes this week on Campbell Live highlighting the very different conditions for pigs on two very different farms. The first programme exposed the awful conditions on a...
    Greens
  • Dirty Dairy Accord failing to clean up rivers
    The first monitoring report of the Sustainable Dairying Water Accord fails to show progress on cleaning up our rivers since the Accord was introduced, the Green Party said today. The Accord's targets for stock exclusion are weaker than the previous...
    Greens
  • The Indignant Kiwi: Why we need to do more to protect our national bird
    A kiwi, about to be released into the wild, was first introduced to Prime Minister John Key and German Chancellor Dr Angela Merkel on her recent visit to New Zealand. By all reports, Dr Merkel was delighted to meet the rather indignant...
    Greens
  • Conflicted interests and health promotion; my opinion.
    As it happens, I know quite a bit about health promotion. It was an area I worked in prior to becoming an MP. What differentiates health promotion from the strict biomedical model, or from health education, for example, is its...
    Greens
  • Transparency on foreign buyers register needed
    News that Overseas Investment Office officials have been working on a register of foreign buyers of New Zealand homes is a welcome surprise, but Land Information Minister Louise Upston now needs to be clear on the details of the project,...
    Labour
  • National moves on state house sell off
    The Labour Party understands the Government has decided to move ahead with a mass sell-off of state houses. Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says he has been told by sources that Cabinet agreed the plan for their sell-off this week....
    Labour
  • Back-down on expert teacher plan welcomed
    News that the Government has backed down and returned to the drawing board on its flagship ‘expert teacher’ policy will come as a welcome Christmas present to schools and teachers, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “Teachers throughout New Zealand...
    Labour
  • John Key can’t duck the blame for internet and phone price increases
    Shareholders are winning out over Kiwi households in the latest episode of the long-running fiasco on copper network phone and internet prices, Labour ICT spokesperson Clare Curran said today. “As predicted last week hundreds of thousands of Kiwi households now...
    Labour
  • An astounding disregard for Māori Affairs
    I have sat on the Māori Affairs Select Committee for most of the last 12 years. I love the committee, its work, its constituency and I especially love how it works differently than other committees, with a strong commitment to...
    Greens
  • Plunging dairy payout will hit regions hard
    The plunging dairy payout will hit New Zealand’s provincial towns and farm service industries hard, Labour’s Primary Industries spokesperson Damien O’Connor says. “Farmers have been bracing themselves for this expected announcement but it will be small towns and those who...
    Labour
  • Reducing inequality creates a stronger economy
    An OECD report finding New Zealand has one of the fast growing rates of income inequality shows “trickle down” economics has failed and that everyone is better off under a stronger economy, Labour Leader Andrew Little says. “The Government should...
    Labour
  • Government surplus target turning sour
    The Government’s golden surplus target is under threat with today’s Crown accounts showing the deficit is $260 million worse than expected, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “It is two blows in one morning for the Government’s economic credibility after...
    Labour
  • Greens call for end to cruelty of factory farming
    The Government must end the legalised cruelty of factory farming, the Green Party said today.Footage shown on Campbell Live this week revealed yet again the appalling, but legal, conditions pigs are routinely kept in on factory farms. The conditions the...
    Greens
  • Milk price plunge creates $6b economic black hole
    The plunge in Fonterra’s forecast dairy payout to a seven-year low for farmers will create a $6 billion economic black hole, showing yet again that National’s failure to diversify is hurting the economy, Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson says. “The...
    Labour
  • Gender Pay Gap: It’s a Matter of Leadership
    The State Services Commission’s annual Human Resource Capability report for the public sector shows the gender pay gap has not decreased since at least 2010. The gap is 14% across all management roles – a slightly bigger gap than for...
    Greens
  • Pardon me Minister, but the cracks are showing
    Cracks are appearing in Cabinet ranks with the Minister of Pacific Peoples, Peseta Sam Lotu-Iiga, throwing his predecessor under the bus over a huge spike in spending by advisers, Labour's State Services spokesman Kris Faafoi says. "Spending to 'staff the...
    Labour
  • Confirmation of no confidence in schools plan
    That just 90 of the country’s 2500 schools have signed up to the Government's one-size-fits all performance pay scheme confirms a wide-spread lack of confidence in it, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “The scheme, which creates ‘executive’ and ‘lead...
    Labour
  • John Key’s secret foreign buyers register
    John Key has been secretly planning a register for foreign buyers without telling New Zealanders, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “Last week Andrew Little called on John Key to adopt the Australian policy on foreign buyers....
    Labour
  • Another kick in the guts for Christchurch
    The government has walked away from the people of Christchurch with Cabinet’s decision today to cut funding available through local Members of Parliament offices to assist people with their earthquake related issues, says Labour’s Earthquake Recovery Spokesperson, Ruth Dyson.  “Over the...
    Labour
  • State house sell off will make transience worse
    The National Government’s plans to sell off state housing will increase the rate of transience among the poorest families, says Labour’s housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. The Growing Up in New Zealand study released today reveals families with children under two...
    Labour
  • Report shows need for independent food safety agency
    The inquiry into the botulism botch-up shows the decision to merge the food safety authority into the Ministry of Primary Industries was a failure, Labour’s Primary Industries spokesperson Damien O’Connor says. “MPI has been severely criticised in this report for...
    Labour
  • National needs to pull their head out of the sand on climate change
    Green MPs were out across the country attending Heads in the Sand events this weekend. I spoke at the Christchurch event where a couple of hundred people mimicked the Government’s climate policy by burying their heads in the sand. It...
    Greens
  • Claims of pumping up the volume all noise
    New manufacturing figures from Statistics NZ reveal a further decline in New Zealand's export performance, highlighting the Government's ongoing failure to rebalance the economy, Labour's Economic Development spokesperson David Clark says."The National Government has adopted a volume-based approach in an...
    Labour
  • Mediation Between Lyttelton Port and Union Fails
    The Rail and Maritime Union (RMTU) has opted to continue its overtime ban indefinitely after mediation with the Lyttelton Port of Christchurch (LPC) failed to progress collective bargaining.   “There was no substantial shift in LPC’s position today so the...
    The Daily Blog
  • Letter from Pakistan
    I was in Peshawar last week. It is a vibrant city with a real energy to it. It is my favourite place to be in Pakistan. You feel the energy as you drive around the city. I am in an...
    The Daily Blog
  • Lyttelton Port workers begin overtime ban
    Media Release: Rail & Maritime Transport Union Lyttelton Port workers begin overtime ban Workers of Christchurch Rail and Lyttelton Port have begun an indefinite ban on overtime, according to the Rail and Maritime Transport Union. The ban was announced at...
    The Daily Blog
  • So the United States of Torture is the ally we are supporting to re-invade ...
    How easy is it to con the sleepy hobbits of muddle Nu Zilind? Very. The despicable means by which this corrupt dirty politics Government have gone about trying to use the fear and anger caused by the Sydney hostage situation...
    The Daily Blog
  • A tale of two gunmen – how the media spins
    A tale of two gunmen – how the media spins...
    The Daily Blog
  • GUEST BLOG: Jill Ovens – Auckland Hospital worker cuts – Democracy the ...
    Auckland Hospital kitchen workers tell CEO Ailsa Claire (far right) a week ago that they did not want to be contracted out. Such was the arrogance that no contingency plans were made in the event that these workers would be...
    The Daily Blog
  • Political opportunists out in force over Sydney hostage crisis
    It hasn’t taken long for supporters of New Zealand’s so-called “anti-terror” legislation passed last week through parliament to try and justify it in the wake of the Sydney hostage crisis. Before we even knew much about the gunman or hostage...
    The Daily Blog
  • NZs new hobby – hating the poor
    Last week people queued at the doors of the Auckland City Mission. They are people that are living without enough income to afford the basics let alone the extras we as a society have come to expect at Christmas. Extras...
    The Daily Blog
  • The only people who believed National’s surplus illusion were voters
    Sigh – the sleepy hobbits of muddle Nu Zilind are pretty easy to con aren’t they? National’s surplus was always a joke that would never happen, but in every single focus group, voters believed by overwhelming numbers that National were...
    The Daily Blog
  • Key’s crocodile tears over dirty politics
    John Key: Bloggers ‘not big part of my day’ Prime Minister John Key says bloggers are not a “big part of his day” but he lives in a world where he can’t ignore them. Speaking on TVNZ’s Breakfast programme today,...
    The Daily Blog
  • Why we are in inequality denial and climate change denial
        We are a country in denial over our inequality and climate change. Both issues have the same thread that runs through them. 30 years of neoliberalism has generated its own cultural narratives and myths. We have been taught that...
    The Daily Blog
  • This weeks Waatea news column – Why proclaiming Key as the Politician of ...
      This weeks Waatea news column – Why proclaiming Key as the Politician of the Year is ethically bankrupt...
    The Daily Blog
  • Britomart violence raises questions over rail staff safety
    Media Release: Rail and Maritime Transport Union   Britomart violence raises questions over rail staff safety   The Rail and Maritime Transport Union is raising serious questions over the safety of the staff on Auckland’s train network after violent incidents on...
    The Daily Blog
  • Australia stares down Siege – National Party politicise tragedy
    The Sydney siege has finished, from the reports that are breaking the gunman, Man Haron Monis is dead and one of the hostages has also been killed. The Australian Police seem to have acted incredibly professionally and the real Australian...
    The Daily Blog
  • The termination of the Internet Mana alliance
    Last week the Mana Movement and Internet Party wrote to the Electoral Commission to cancel the registration of the Internet-Mana political party. It was a decision which brought the arrangement between the parties to a natural end after failing to...
    The Daily Blog
  • Peace breaks out between Greens and Labour
    Finally some good news for the Left. Peace has broken out between the Greens and Labour. One of the greatest barriers to a real relationship between the Greens and Labour has been the uncompromising arrogance of the Labour Party Caucus...
    The Daily Blog
  • Little keeps it stupid, simple
    Labour MP drops euthanasia billA bill which would legalise voluntary euthanasia has been dropped by Labour MP Iain Lees-Galloway at the request of his leader Andrew Little. Mr Lees-Galloway had been canvassing support for his End of Life Choice Bill...
    The Daily Blog
  • Dear Ministry for Social Development,
    Dear Ministry for Social Development, I realise you probably already know this, but just a wee reminder of REALITY. You know – the reality of the vast majority of us who aren’t making ends meet and are struggling to live...
    The Daily Blog
  • Social Policy still in the dark ages when it comes to relationships
    Two years ago I became aware of the work of two very able barristers who defend low income women accused of relationship fraud. CPAG then began collecting cases and stories of horrendous misery and victimisation. Then penny was slow to...
    The Daily Blog
  • The truth about inequality
      The truth about inequality...
    The Daily Blog
  • Rather Than Sending Troops To Iraq … Brownlee May Wish To Consider Better...
    There’s something a little unsettling going on at the moment. Ok, many somethings. Of particular concern is the fact that right now, New Zealand troops are training at Waiouru for deployment to Iraq – and, assumedly, the ongoing war against ISIS. Brownlee,...
    The Daily Blog
  • West Papua’s Saralana Declaration most vital unity development for 52 yea...
    Newly elected spokesman for the unified West Papuan movement Benny Wenda is treated to a chiefly welcome at the opening ceremony of the “unity” meeting in Port Vila. Photo: © Ben Bohane/wakaphotos.com David Robie also blogs at Café Pacific. A...
    The Daily Blog
  • Helen says it all
    Helen says it all...
    The Daily Blog
  • When Fran O’Sullivan, John Armstrong and Cameron Slater are singing Andre...
    The mainstream media of NZ will never allow a Labour leader who threatens the bastions of neoliberalism from ever taking power. David Cunliffe found that out. So when the mainstream media establishment from Fran O’Sullivan to John Armstrong to even...
    The Daily Blog
  • Wisdom’s Mirror: Can Grant Robertson Slay the Neoliberal Gorgon?
    HOW TO ELIMINATE one’s rival without getting one’s hands dirty? It’s a problem with a prodigious political pedigree. King David’s lust for Bathsheba drove him to order Uriah, her unfortunate husband, placed in the front line of battle – where...
    The Daily Blog
  • GUEST BLOG: Miriam Pierard – Sweet Sixteen and able to vote?
    The level of voter participation in elections is an indication of the health of a democracy. Declining turnout across the democratic world, particularly among young people, has led to questions about the legitimacy of our governing institutions. It is time...
    The Daily Blog
  • Public Equity and Progressive Politics
    We heard from the OECD on Wednesday morning (10 Dec) [Focus on Inequality and Growth] that inequality suppresses economic growth. (Here are Radio New Zealand’s morning reports on this.) This is hardly a surprise to many economists and non-economists alike. The key point in...
    The Daily Blog
  • Analysis: Final Across The Ditch Bulletin for 2014 – Lorde Help Us!
    Analysis (Text & Audio): Across The Ditch – Selwyn Manning & Peter Godfrey Headline: Final Across The Ditch Bulletin for 2014 – Lorde Help Us! 5AA’s Peter Godfrey and Selwyn Manning.FiveAA’s Peter Godfrey and MIL’s Selwyn Manning present their last...
    The Daily Blog
  • Sharing intelligence with CIA torturers
    New Zealand’s spy agencies have long presented intelligence sharing with their US counterparts as mutually beneficial and benign. That stance has always lacked credibility and is now its impossible to justify. The just-released US Senate Intelligence Committee report shows that...
    The Daily Blog
  • Labour votes for Surveillance State. NZ First Opposes!
    A few weeks before the election, the New Zealand Labour Party decided to cash in on simmering popular discontent with the state of the surveillance state that National’s set up. Never mind their own previous and well-publicized brushes with egregious state-surveillance … they wanted people to know that...
    The Daily Blog
  • Economic ideology destroys us all
    The OECD’s latest report says “The biggest factor for the impact of inequality on growth is the gap between lower income households and the rest of the population. The negative effect is not just for the poorest income decile but...
    The Daily Blog
  • 3 simple words for the Labour Party
    I have 3 very simple words for all those Labour Party apologists who are trying to rinse Labour clean here. Get. A. Warrant. You can all try and spin this any way you want, but Labour voted for 24 hour...
    The Daily Blog
  • 2014 – Year of the angry white knuckle
    I knew Internet/MANA would have to fight National, ACT, Conservative Party, United Future, Maori Party and the mainstream media. I didn’t think they would also have to fight Labour, the Greens and NZ First as well. Apparently feeding hungry kids in...
    The Daily Blog
  • Chris Rock on cop shootings
    Chris Rock on cop shootings...
    The Daily Blog
  • Bank Lending: Restrictions and Favourites
    An important story in 2014 has been the Reserve Bank’s ‘loan-to-value ratio’ restrictions, which have made it extremely hard for first-time house buyers to get sufficient finance to buy a house. Corran Dann in TVNZ’s  Q+A (7 Dec) suggested that...
    The Daily Blog
  • This weeks Waatea news column – How should Waitangi Tribunal ruling on S...
      This weeks Waatea news column - How should  Waitangi Tribunal ruling on Sovereignty be implemented?...
    The Daily Blog
  • Labour sell us out on warrantless surveillance
    Isn’t it depressing that Labour are selling us out by voting for warrantless spying by an agency caught out smearing them? Last night Labour do what they always do, over compensate on Security issues. So terrified are Labour at being...
    The Daily Blog
  • This Is The Headline For Test Post
    This Is The Headline For Test Post Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Ut eget neque facilisis sapien laoreet volutpat. Nulla vel nisl nec purus interdum tincidunt. Phasellus orci sapien, vestibulum et pulvinar non, pellentesque eget leo. Sed...
    The Daily Blog
  • Question Time in Parliament Today – National Party MPs cheer graph that s...
    This is the graph the National Party were shown by Russel Norman in Parliament today and they all cheered…     …they cheered?!?!?!? That’s beyond denial, that’s just gleefully suicidal....
    The Daily Blog
  • NZ Pastor Prays For Homosexual Author To Kill Himself
    By Jayden Jameson and Jessie Hume If we ever needed a reminder that homophobia is alive and kicking in New Zealand we have Pastor Logan Robertson from the Westcity Baptist Church. The Westcity Baptist ministry could apparently be described as New...
    The Daily Blog
  • Political Journalism in the South-Pacific – a new direction for NZ influe...
    Last week, the incredible Pacific Journalism Review celebrated 20 years of promoting and supporting and standing up for Journalism in the South-Pacific. The conference at AUT featured journalists from around the pacific who have battled and fought and been punished...
    The Daily Blog
  • Antarctica minus the ice – welcome to your future
    Antarctica minus the ice – welcome to your future...
    The Daily Blog
  • REAL LIFE GUEST BLOG: Lou – 15 shifts in 12 months……permanently homel...
    This is Key’s real life – other NZers aren’t so privileged    15 shifts in 12 months……permanently homeless since May. I went to the Salvation Army yesterday on advice for emergency housing as my temporary accomodation had turned volatile. Just...
    The Daily Blog
  • Labour Party Members should be furious at reviews findings
    Let’s see The Standard use this image Well, well, well… Labour’s election review: What went wrongLabour’s review panel has reported its findings back about the party’s election campaign and the reasons for the low 25 per cent result, identifying problems...
    The Daily Blog
  • Judith Collins joins the Sunday Star Times and cements the Rights dominance...
    “I am not a Monster”, hissed Judith Collins   I don’t read the Sunday Star Times, so had no idea that they had just decided to make Judith Collins of all people a new columnist. Her appointment cements into place...
    The Daily Blog
  • Grey Lynn Festival – very Grey – Art in the Dark – very Dark
    The battle of Helm’s Deep from the Two Towers would have had better OSH conditions than Art in the Dark   Grey Lynn Festival – 2 stars So the Grey Lynn Festival happened last weekend. It’s a day where the good liberal...
    The Daily Blog
  • ‘Stalking’ Ede
      Tau Henare accuses TV3 of stalkingA former National MP has accused TV3 of stalking after one of its journalists attempted to question a former Beehive spin doctor. Today’s episode of The Nation featured an unsuccessful attempt to question former...
    The Daily Blog
  • Taxpayer Union, the NZ Herald and Len Brown’s secret hidden love den
    I love the way the NZ Herald introduced the discredited Taxpayer Union in their bullshit story about Len Brown’s secret hidden love den… ‘Secret room’ spending shows need for recall electionsA lobby group says revelations Auckland Council spent $30,000 on...
    The Daily Blog
  • Eric Garner killed by NYPD original footage
    The horror of a ultra militarised and racist American Police Force who can kill with impunity. Obama claims cameras on every office would stop this type of brutality, these cops knew they were being filmed and killed him anyway. In...
    The Daily Blog
  • Unjust to imprison us for crimes we haven’t yet committed
    Once again National and Labour have succumbed to the “law and order” brigade enabling the passage of a Bill imprisoning people for crimes they might commit in the future. The Public Safety (Public Protection Orders) Bill allows the Court to...
    The Daily Blog
  • SPCA welcomes glueboard traps ban
    The Royal New Zealand SPCA applauds the ban on the sale and use ofglueboard traps in New Zealand....
    Scoop politics
  • Mediation Between Lyttelton Port and Union Fails
    The Rail and Maritime Union (RMTU) has opted to continue its overtime ban indefinitely after mediation with the Lyttelton Port of Christchurch (LPC) failed to progress collective bargaining. “There was no substantial shift in LPC’s position today...
    Scoop politics
  • Review into Phillip Smith’s escape submitted to Government
    A multi-agency review on the escape of Phillip Smith to South America has submitted its initial report to the Government today....
    Scoop politics
  • Len Brown gets haybales from giant chicken and Ms. Santa Cla
    Today at 10.30am, Ms. Santa Claus and a giant chicken delivered haybales to Len Brown’s office, urging Auckland City Council to decline a resource consent application sought by cage egg producer Craddock Farms....
    Scoop politics
  • Increased Abuse of Parents A Predicted Outcome
    Family First NZ says that the increasing level of parental abuse , especially towards mothers, is an unfortunate but expected outcome of the rise of children’s ‘rights’ and the undermining of parental authority....
    Scoop politics
  • Brownlee’s Misplaced War on Acronyms
    The beleaguered Minister of Defence who reportedly cannot tell an RFL (required fitness level) from an AWQ (annual weapons qualification) has declared war on military acronyms while proving the proverb about those in glass houses....
    Scoop politics
  • Fluoride risks whitewashed in rushed consultation
    Ministry of Health propose to exempt toxic industrial waste products used in water fluoridation from the Medicines Act 1981...
    Scoop politics
  • Practical Tips on Working and Living in New Zealand
    JUANderful Juan” in 7-Minute Migrante Video Project Shares Practical Tips on Working and Living in New Zealand...
    Scoop politics
  • Christmas Day in Prison
    Christmas Day in prison this year will involve swapping the main meal of the day, so that dinner will be served at lunchtime, leaving the evening meal to be sandwiches. This is standard practice for this day....
    Scoop politics
  • Alcohol advertising bans need stronger evidence
    Wellington (18 December 2014): The New Zealand Initiative’s Head of Research, Dr Eric Crampton, today urged Cabinet to look to the evidence before banning alcohol advertising and sponsorship. The Ministerial Forum on Advertising and Sponsorship...
    Scoop politics
  • EPA grants marine consent to OMV NZ Ltd
    The Environmental Protection Authority (EPA) has granted a marine consent to OMV NZ Ltd to continue its development drilling programme in the Maari oil field in the South Taranaki Bight....
    Scoop politics
  • DHB puts staff and patients at risk in order to save money
    The Public Service Association (PSA) is alarmed that the Waikato District Health Board (WDHB) is proposing to cut the 4 and 2 roster system, established nationally, for mental health nurses. The PSA represents more than 210 mental health nurses working...
    Scoop politics
  • Ambivilence about alcohol marketing recommendations
    Ministers Adams and Dunn issued a media release yesterday nearly two months after receiving a final report from their Ministerial Forum on Alcohol Advertising and Sponsorship, and four years following an original announcement to review alcohol...
    Scoop politics
  • Alcohol forum recommendations: a step in the right direction
    The Forum has stated clearly that that it accepts alcohol marketing plays a role in heavy alcohol consumption and subsequent harm, and that young people need to be protected from it by regulation....
    Scoop politics
  • Court Judgment: Nicky Hager v Police on Dirty Politics Raids
    Mr Hager alleges that steps taken by the second respondent (the Police): first, in deciding to apply for a search warrant in respect of Mr Hager’s premises; secondly, in applying for the warrant; and thirdly, executing the warrant at his...
    Scoop politics
  • Holiday home hazards revealed
    Common sense ways to look after your property this summer Auckland, 18 December 2014 – Burglars aren’t the only threat to your home during the holiday season, says AA Insurance. It’s more likely to be broken water pipes, burst hot...
    Scoop politics
  • Grieving families should be able to scatter ashes in peace
    Grieving families should be able to scatter ashes in peace 18 December 2014 Funeral directors are relieved that Wellington City Council has finally dropped plans to charge families for permits to scatter ashes in public places. Funeral Directors...
    Scoop politics
  • RSA Offers Condolences To Victims Of Sydney Siege
    As an organisation representing over 100,000 New Zealanders, the RSA has today condemned the actions taken by Man Haron Monis during his siege in a Sydney café, and offered their deepest sympathies to the friends and family of Tori Johnson...
    Scoop politics
  • Kiwi activists crowdfund billboard for Simon Bridges
    Almost seven thousand New Zealanders have taken part in a crowdfunding campaign, and have raised enough money to put a billboard up in Tauranga that is directed at Simon Bridges, the Minister of Energy and Resources....
    Scoop politics
  • Leaked TISA text exposes US threat to privacy, data security
    ‘The US is demanding that New Zealand and other countries accept sweeping rules that would override privacy protections for digitised personal and other data’, according to Professor Jane Kelsey from the University of Auckland....
    Scoop politics
  • Lyttelton Port workers begin overtime ban
    Workers of Christchurch Rail and Lyttelton Port have begun an indefinite ban on overtime, according to the Rail and Maritime Transport Union. The ban was announced at a mass meeting at the Port after negotiations between Lyttelton Port of Christchurch...
    Scoop politics
  • Ban on Alcohol Advertising Could Cost Taxpayer
    Responding to yesterday's release of the report of the Ministerial Forum on Alcohol Advertising and Sponsorship, Jordan Williams, the Executive Director of the Taxpayers’ Union says:...
    Scoop politics
  • Farm safety isn’t helped by punitive fines
    Federated Farmers Health and Safety spokesperson, Katie Milne says she is concerned about the impact of the $40,000 fine for a Marlborough farm couple, who weren’t wearing helmets and carrying children as passengers. The Court case, and subsequent...
    Scoop politics
  • New online guide to NZ’s environment goes live
    The Environment Foundation* has launched a new web-based guide to the management of New Zealand’s natural environment....
    Scoop politics
  • Ban On Alcohol Advertising Just One Step
    Family First NZ says that a proposed ban on alcohol advertising at sports events as recommended by a ministerial forum is an important move, but will not solve the binge drinking and alcohol abuse issue on its own....
    Scoop politics
  • CLANZ scholarship winner to examine legal services to Crown
    Wellington in-house lawyer Tania Warburton is the inaugural winner of the research scholarship established by the Corporate Lawyers Association of New Zealand (CLANZ)....
    Scoop politics
  • Joint Australasian operation dismantles drug syndicate
    The Joint Organised Crime Task Force (JOCTF), leading a multi-agency team, has smashed a multi-million dollar international organised crime network following raids across Melbourne this morning....
    Scoop politics
  • Video: Meet Mark Gilbert, U.S. Ambassador-Designate to NZ
    Join us in welcoming Ambassador-Designate Mark Gilbert and his wife Nancy. They are arriving in New Zealand shortly and wanted to introduce themselves. Watch this video to learn about his connections with Aotearoa, and why he thinks the partnership between...
    Scoop politics
  • MIA Welcomes Review Findings
    The MIA welcomes the findings of the Health Quality & Safety Commission into child and youth mortality arising from the use of motorcycles, quads and other agricultural vehicles....
    Scoop politics
  • Quads Bikes Not for Under 16s
    Safekids Aotearoa strongly supports recommendations made in a report released today highlighting the dangers posed by quad bikes when ridden or controlled by children who are under 16 years of age....
    Scoop politics
  • Inquiry on Parliament’s legislative response to emergencies
    Public submissions are being invited on Regulations Review Committee’s Inquiry into Parliament’s legislative response to future national emergencies. The closing date for submissions is Sunday, 1 March 2015....
    Scoop politics
  • Switch off on the beach NOT at level crossings
    KiwiRail and TrackSAFE NZ have launched a new summer rail safety campaign with a message to motorists to stay focused and always look for trains at level crossings over the holidays. December is known as the month for family, festivity...
    Scoop politics
  • Report on child and youth deaths from vehicle use
    Quad bike and other off-road vehicle accidents second largest cause of child recreational deaths...
    Scoop politics
  • Inspector-General accepts apology for leak of report
    The Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security, Cheryl Gwyn, has accepted an unreserved apology from Hon Phil Goff MP for disclosing some of the contents of her recent Report into the Release of Information by the NZSIS in July and August...
    Scoop politics
  • Santa’s naughty list shows NZPork in trouble
    Santa has provided animal advocacy organisation SAFE with an early copy of this year’s naughty list , as it prominently features many animal-abusing industries and businesses, with NZPork topping the list....
    Scoop politics
  • WWI veterans had persisting higher risk of early death
    New research on the impact of the First World War on participating New Zealand soldiers shows they typically lost around eight years of life and had an increased risk of early death in the post-war period....
    Scoop politics
  • Rainbow Wellington urges further change from Blood Service
    This week the New Zealand Blood Service (NZBS) announced the implementation of the agreed changes to blood donor deferral. For men who have sex with men (MSM) this primarily involves a reduction of the deferral period from five years to...
    Scoop politics
  • New Zealand Government signals reversal of fortune
    The Government’s robust $372 million forecast surplus from Budget 2014 will turn into a $572 million deficit, according to the 2015 Half-Yearly Economic and Fiscal Update and the Budget Policy Statement. Imports are cheaper and good export prices...
    Scoop politics
  • Time for Jobs that Count in the Meat Industry
    The NZ Meat Workers Union will launch a new national campaign to highlight job insecurity in the Meat Industry this afternoon in Palmerston North....
    Scoop politics
  • Protest at killing of schoolboys – Vigil 17/12/14
    A peaceful vigil will be held in Downtown Square opposite Britomart station – cnr of Queen and Customs St from 11-45 am: Wednesday 17 December 2014....
    Scoop politics
  • Social housing provider opens development in Johnsonvillle
    Social housing provider, Accessible Properties, will be opening eight new social housing units in a new housing development in Johnsonville tomorrow....
    Scoop politics
  • NCWNZ Wins Court Case
    ComVoices welcomes and celebrates the news that the National Council of Women of New Zealand (NCWNZ) has won its High Court case against Inland Revenue and the Charities Registration Board....
    Scoop politics
  • Cut Taxes + Cut Waste = Surplus
    Responding to the Treasury's Half Year Fiscal and Economic Update, Taxpayers’ Union Executive Director, Jordan Williams, says:...
    Scoop politics
  • Cuts in public services likely fromBudget Policy Statement
    The horizon for workers looks gloomy with the release today of the Budget Policy statement. “Continuing real cuts in Government funding of public services are inevitable as a result of today’s Budget Policy Statement. The policy ignores the social,...
    Scoop politics
  • Half Year Economic and Fiscal Update 2014
    The Half Year Economic and Fiscal Update (HYEFU) 2014 provides the Treasury's latest economic forecasts and the forecast financial statements of the Government, including the implications of Government financial decisions....
    Scoop politics
  • Half Year Economic and Fiscal Update 2014
    The Half Year Economic and Fiscal Update (HYEFU) 2014 provides the Treasury's latest economic forecasts and the forecast financial statements of the Government, including the implications of Government financial decisions....
    Scoop politics
  • Chief Ombudsman launches major review of OIA practices
    The Chief Ombudsman, Dame Beverley Wakem, has today begun a wide ranging review of Official Information Act (OIA) practices in the public sector....
    Scoop politics
  • The Tasman Sea got a little smaller this morning
    “Our hearts and minds are with the people of Sydney: the Tasman Sea got a little smaller this morning,” said Race Relations Commissioner Dame Susan Devoy....
    Scoop politics
  • A safety message for the festive season from Housing NZ
    Batteries may be required for some of the best toys under the tree this year, but they are just as essential to enjoying the greatest gift of all, says Housing New Zealand General Manager of Property Services, Marcus Bosch. “Smoke...
    Scoop politics
  • Charity Wins in the High Court
    The National Council of Women of New Zealand (NCWNZ) is delighted that the High Court has found in its favour in its case against Inland Revenue and the Charities Registration Board....
    Scoop politics
Public service advertisements by The Standard

Current CO2 level in the atmosphere