web analytics
The Standard

KiwiBuild vs. what?

Written By: - Date published: 10:04 am, November 21st, 2012 - 50 comments
Categories: housing, john key, labour - Tags: , , ,

Key amuses me sometimes. This is one of those occasions. Key on KiwiBuild:

Mr Key says the plan lacks substance.

“The truth is that it’s a very complex issue … I don’t think some fanciful concept is really going to fix the problem.”

(1) “Lacks substance”. Really? National’s most recent housing announcement consisted of:
• 2,500 to 3000 new houses
• built at Hobsonville in Auckland
• 80% costing more than $485,000, the remaining 20% (500 – 600 houses) described as “affordable”.

This underwhelming prospect was variously described as a “wet bus ticket” and “Package? What package?”. In contrast Labour’s KiwiBuild is proposing:
• 100,00 new houses
• built all over the country
• costing around $300,000

If John Key wants to compare the substance of the two plans, it isn’t KiwiBuild that is lacking.

(2) It’s a “fanciful concept”. Really? It’s 100,000 new homes, bricks and mortar, there’s nothing very fanciful about that. It’s a government partnership with the private sector, creating a massive economic boost and thousands of jobs, there’s nothing very fanciful about that. This is exactly the sort of project that any government with any “ambition” for New Zealand should be promoting. But the best that the useless Nats can manage is to describe it as fanciful?

KiwiBuild is an excellent policy that would make a real difference to housing, jobs, and the economy in NZ. Compare and contrast with John Key’s personal flagship economic policy – how’s that cycleway doing again?

50 comments on “KiwiBuild vs. what?”

  1. vto 1

    I think it is a great idea and it isn’t as if it hasn’t been done before.

    The government is the largest home owner in the country and has been for decades so it already has a foot in the door for this.

    Keep pushing it, loud and clear. People will love it. There will be queues out the door. Remember, housing is crucial to people’s daily lives.

    As for Key, perhaps the line in response to his criticism is along the lines of “what on earth would a money trader know about housing?” or “Key should stick to being a wide boy”

    onwards ….

  2. tracey 2

    Things to be wary of;

    Quality of homes and those building. Builders and designers will have personal liability but will mobie or ministry of housing have immunity?

    In auckland, on average apparently, homes double in value every ten years. Most people will probably stay put for a few years once in IF they have young children. Schools prompt home sales aa children get older.

    Perhaps if you choose to not live in the home, the home has a contracted capped rent, managed by the ministry and rented to those in need?

    Cgt is a good idea if not primary residence OR cgt if home owned by a trust.

  3. tracey 3

    Given his address what cld key possibly know about affordable housing… Its a few decades since he was near one. Except for the family in owairaka of course…

  4. Enough is Enough 4

    Where is the land coming from for these 100,000 new homes.

    Will the government be buying private land on mass and if so where. I am thinking of Auckland as that is the only place where there really is an issue.

    I think it is a daft policy because the right can and are driving trucks through the holes in the policy.

    How do you stop the rich taking advantage of this?

    How do you stop the firt time home owners profiteering fom this? Making 100k over 2-3years in capital gains?

    How can they be sold at cost. Won’t the builders and land owners want to see some kind of profit?

    • Lanthanide 4.1

      “How do you stop the rich taking advantage of this?”
      Limiting it to first-time buyers. I’d suggest if they’re serious about it they’ll need to put some sort of limitation on the title that the property can never be used as a rental and must be owner-occupied.

      “How do you stop the firt time home owners profiteering fom this? Making 100k over 2-3years in capital gains?”
      Capital gains tax?

      • Enough is Enough 4.1.1

        Capital gains tax will not apply to the family home?

        Or is that policy being revised as well?

        Even if a CGT does apply, why would it deter homeowners selling at market rates? A house that cost you $300k in Auckland would have an instant market value of $400 at least. I flick it off pay my CGT and pocket a handsome profit.

        Now many will see that as fine but I am not sure how it is addressing the issue of affordable housing in Auckland

      • Chris 4.1.2

        A capital gains tax will just mean they get a profit of say $70k instead of $100k. It doesn’t stop people making a profit. By definition it is a tax on gains, it can never stop someone making a gain simply lower it. The only way to stop this would be to bond people to the house for say a period of ten years, although this is just delaying the capital gain (presumably would make a gain).

        Also just because people are rich does not mean they have owned a house – sure that would knock out a lot of the older rich people but their children would still be classified as first home buyers. Simplest solution would be to make open to any home buyer who has never had a house or an interest in a trust which has held a house for the last ten years or something. It won’t stop everyone but will stop a lot.

        In response to enough is enough’s third point – presumably it means cost to the government – i.e. builders and land owners will still make a profit, the government however wouldn’t make a profit.

        Edit – also if someone purchased the house with the intention to sell in a couple of years they would have to pay tax on the sale under current laws anyway so a CGT would make no difference at all.

    • Fortran 4.2

      Enough

      Agreed – where is the land coming from at what price.
      Sure most of the major building companies can build at $200,000 – $275,000 but what price land – say $175,000 – so
      Do we have enough physical builders who are prepared to build outside Christchurch at present.
      Are there many spare people available for this cheaper quality building ?

      • mike e 4.2.1

        This could carry on from the CHCH rebuild using up the flood of labour their! smart move by labour land would have to be bought larger sections turned into higher density housing! smaller sections turned into low rise apartments such as Rod Oram talked about like Melbourne!

  5. Richard Christie 5

    “I don’t think some fanciful concept is really going to fix the problem.””

    Isn’t that exactly what Key once said about asset sales?

  6. tracey 6

    Enough, i gather auckland council has been consulted and has land. The land which national wants its developers to make a profit and run fromi assume.

  7. The Gormless Fool formerly known as Oleolebiscuitbarrell 7

    “KiwiBuild is an excellent policy that would make a real difference to housing, jobs, and the economy in NZ.”

    Really, I thought it was a policy that would see the government giving $100 grand to randomly selected New Zealanders paid for by everyone else.

    • Lanthanide 7.1

      “Really, I thought it was a policy that would see the government giving $100 grand to randomly selected New Zealanders paid for by everyone else.”

      Not sure how you get the “paid for by everyone else” part, since the people who buy these houses have to pay for them.

      • The Gormless Fool formerly known as Oleolebiscuitbarrell 7.1.1

        They pay $100 grand less than the houses are worth. That’s $100 grand for free in anyone’s language.

        Here we have a party who claims its primary concern is equity, picking people at random to make rich.

        I just hope they pick me.

  8. Poission 8

    The first problem that needs to be addressed is the unconstrained sale of residential property to non resident overseas investors,here a mitigating tax is necessary to alleviate the AK bubble,

    The Greens seem to be on the case.

    http://www.interest.co.nz/property/62124/govt-needs-restrict-foreign-buyers-nz-property-green-party-says-following-real-estate

    The nz property tax system is a complete basket case under Dunne.

    • insider 8.1

      If you know it’s a problem, no doubt you have some data showing the numbers of sales and their value and how they are driving the market….

      Most of the ‘proof’ seems to be anecdotes that an asian has been seen buying a property at an auction.

  9. Brendon Harre 9

    This is an election bribe, mainly directed at Auckland.

    For better or worse houses are privately sold. Even 100,000 houses provided over 10 years will not change that fact. Houses are expensive in New Zealand for a variety of reasons. Strong demand coming from population growth, migration and foreign buyers. Banks offering easy credit as the more they lend the higher their profits. Supply is restricted by strict planning laws, expensive building consent fees. Building supplies are expensive because of duopoly pricing and property developers have monopoly pricing power for their sections because the length of time it takes to get consent for new sections means their is no effective competition.

    Shearer’s plan ignores these problems because they are difficult. To really change the housing market means upsetting some of the above vested interests. Is Shearer prepared to do that? Or will reward a few lucky ones with cheap houses while letting the rigged system remain for the majority?

  10. gomango 10

    Don’t even call this a policy – it is a politicians desperate attempt to get some attention.

    It fails on any test of economic reality or fairness. Even a year 1 NCEA economics student knows what the effect of a subsidy is on demand and price. Any subsidy just gets capitalised in to the price (failing the understanding economics test) and the gain is captured by whoever is lucky enough or connected enough to get the subsidy (failure of the fairness test).

    And do the math: 1.5 billion divided by 100,000 homes = $15,000 per home. How does that equate with building new homes in the place we need them – Auckland?

    False advertising to call this a policy. A desperate attempt by a desperate politician to capture the votes of stupid people. Who will love a stupid policy like this is property developers and building companies. They will be the real winners.

    Lack of housing affordability is primarily due to restrictions on land use leading to low density rather than high, expensive RMA process and the fact almost no-one in NZ wants to live in said high density housing. But allow the build of decent high density housing stock (as opposed to the corruption based shitboxes built around Auckland city in the 2000’s) close to where people want to live and that would go a long way to resovling the shortage and hence the high prices.

    • insider 10.1

      it’s the new interest free student loans – remember when they were only going to cost $300m a year….

      • Lanthanide 10.1.1

        For as much bleating as there is about interest free student loans, without it there would be a hell of a lot more graduates leaving for Australia. My partner would likely be among them (Phd, Mechanical Engineering).

        • insider 10.1.1.1

          I’d rather education were free in the first place… but the point was that the cost was vastly underestimated and this will probably go the same way (although loans was actually done while this may never happen)

          • KJT 10.1.1.1.1

            Complaining about student loan cost and then saying education should be free. Which is it?

            • insider 10.1.1.1.1.1

              read carefully. The comment was about the underestimation of the true cost. This is not likely to be a 1.5b policy any more than interest free loans was likely to be only 300m a year.

              Note that interest free loans have also been criticised as a middle class rort/buy off, similar to the criticisms of this housing policy.

    • Lanthanide 10.2

      “And do the math: 1.5 billion divided by 100,000 homes = $15,000 per home. How does that equate with building new homes in the place we need them – Auckland?”

      Funnily enough, they don’t intend to build 100,000 homes with $1.5b. Instead, the plan is to build houses, sell them, and use the money recouped from the sale to build more.

      • McFlock 10.2.1

        I guess NCEA Level 1 got a “not achieved”.

      • mike e 10.2.2

        Lanthanide they are going to issue govt bonds to finance these houses the $15,000 is probably the equivalent to the existing home start loan.

  11. Seti 11

    Don’t developers usually have to fund roading, drainage etc for new subdivisions? Has this cost been factored it?

    What effect will 10 years of inflation and land price increases have?

    100,000 homes over 10 years is 27 every day. You would need an army of builders, which would delay and increase the cost in the non-Kiwibuild construction sector. Tradesmen would then be drawn away from Kiwibuild as costs rise in the private sector.

    The numbers involved are not realistic.

    • mike e 11.1

      Seti so the equivalent numbers are required for the CHCH rebuild those builders will go overseas after the main build has finished its better they stay here and add value to our economy than some one else’s!
      Besides most modern economies are having jobless recoveries its time the govt stepped in and did something as all the Manufacturing jobs are going and Nactuf are doing Zilch!
      We have an old housing stock also a shortage of 13,000 new home in Auckland, Queenstown’s growth is being hampered by the shortage of reasonable priced accommodation for workers,Northland has a huge problem!
      Its time we did something about it !
      The greens were wanting 6,000new houses each year this works well for labour!
      Its going to provide more than the 400 jobs the cycle way provided!
      Most of the materials will be NZ made .
      The money will probably come from Kiwisaver via Govt bonds cutting overseas debt as well!
      Where is Don Brashes productivity commission when you need them!

  12. KJT 12

    This is excellent policy for many reasons.

    1. It is finally a move by Labour away from the Neo-Liberal meme. “The market will provide”.
    2. It will help to gradually lower house pricing.
    We need prices to lower gradually over time. The effect of too fast a lowering, unless we get banks to take a haircut at the same time, would be too recessionary.
    3. Overall lower house pricing helps new home owners and poorer people the most. It is rubbish this will just help the middle class.

    More policies such as restrictions on foreign land ownership and banker/speculation pushing up prices, more State rentals, sweat equity, CGT and maybe changes to the RBA are required, but this is a good start.

    • Herodotus 12.1

      So when will the 1st house roll out ??? Not in the 1st term of a Labour govt.
      What happens if there are overruns in costs, does the tax payer pick these up or the unfortunate 1st home owner?
      Westpac economist believes that Auck property will increase over the next 2 years by 6% and 8% in the following year. 15% in 2 years !!! so if I am right that it will take 3 yrs to implement this policy we start on 15% and should the bubble not burst go higher. $300k today = $350+k in 2017. I bet that real wages will not improve over this period.
      And where are these 10k new home owners p.a. coming from ? or 100k in 10 years ?
      Better to spend the $$ on HNZ stock.

      • millsy 12.1.1

        Increasing state/social housing (as wells as ditching the renewable tenancies) (perhaps also subsidizing people into buying their state house), would probably achieve what KiwiBuild and a CGT would set out to acheive for cheaper rate.

        Providing warm, clean and secure accomodation to those at the bottom without gouging them in rent would push the slum lords and speculators who target them out of the market, and will improve the standard of rental accomodation, as well as bring house prices down. It is no co-incidence that when state housing was sold off back in the 90’s house prices rose.

        KiwiBuild is an interesting idea though. I think these also offer a chance to experiment with grassroots democracy/localism. Imagine every KiwiBuild development being represented by a neighbourhood council elected by residence in that development. This council would also be responsible for things like parks, schools, libaries etc…

  13. CJA 13

    Okay just running the numbers : 100,000 new houses in a ten period meaning 10,000 a year meaning 192 a week or 27 houses a day being built. Come on guys seriously. Okay I understand housing is an issue in New Zealand as well as house prices but coming up with an unrealistic policy is not the way to fix it. Come up with something realistic then pitch it to the voting public.

    • McFlock 13.1

      Seti got there first with that line. 
             
      And that’s 27 houses+units+apartments per day on average.  
      2,000 apprenticeships. Let’s assume 10% operational at any time: that’s 200 apprentices, plus additional labourers and qualified trades staff.
             
      Doesn’t look quite so outlandish now. Oh, there is plenty of room to quibble, but the “unrealistic” call is a bit strained. 

      • Seti 13.1.1

        Doesn’t look quite so outlandish now. Oh, there is plenty of room to quibble, but the “unrealistic” call is a bit strained.

        Unrealistic is a huge understatement. 27 houses a day, on top of Christchurch reconstruction and all other housing and building projects? Considering this from Stonewoods homes website –

        How long will it take to build my house?

        90 working days (approx 20 weeks) Build time for a single storey 105 working days for a two storey

        That’s without admin, code of compliance, accessible roads, external drainage etc. So 5 months just for construction from a professional building co. Sure, some synergies will be gained with a mass rollout but 10,000 additional houses a year? NF way.

        • PlanetOrphan 13.1.1.1

          Check out the Pre Fabricated walls etc numbers before you call it impossible Seti.

        • mike e 13.1.1.2

          SETI VINI RAMPUKA Its been done before and its 2 years from the election in which time Canterbury will be well and truly under way what are we going to do with the labour force when Canterbury will be starting to wind down !

        • McFlock 13.1.1.3

          dude, you don’t build them one at a time.

      • CJA 13.1.2

        Sorry don’t quite get what your point is and yes Seti did get there first but I guess it’s more a case of reiiterating the point that the policy is unrealistic.

  14. Of course Key calls it fanciful , How can you asset strip KiwiBuild M8?

    Key would have to wait for the “Free Market” to claim them before being able too do anything M8!

    DunnoKeyo obviously doesn’t know how to “Print Money” …. Bleedin Moron M8s

    • mike e 14.1

      PO the free market you would think would put enough pressure on in the Auckland market to meet demand but its not happening !
      Market failure is whats happening and shonkey and his b(W) anking m8s are having a field day those banks that are lending in Auckland’s bubble are creaming it for no extra risk or work.These speculators are also seriously damaging New Zealands productive sector as well . Whats Shonkey the mrerchant B(w)anker doing nothing zero zilch stuffing farmers manufacturers the Tourism sector etc!

  15. AAMC 15

    My fear, please correct me if I’m wrong…

    Won’t this be a speculative boom for early purchasers? Is there some sort of means testing to establish who is “allowed” to purchase?

    Won’t this be another win for the banks who will be the ones giving mortgages to those buying? It’s in their interests for the houses to inflate in value so they can create some more money and to increase their interest yeild.

    When the Ozzies subsidized people into houses to ward off the worst effects of GFC1, all it did was further inflate their bubble, will this do the same?

    Assuming more supply will solve the problem just illustrates we are still stuck in a neo-classical supply & demand model, not having learnt that, around the world, even with supply and Gapital Gains Taxs, bubbles grew as banks pumped debt into the system.

    Is anybody ever going to talk about the root problems?

    • The root problem is base price escalation/overvaluation.

      KiwiBuild will fix that by introducing fixed price housing and rentals.

      KiwiSaver already has good checks etc, would be hard to extend.

      A good basic idea that, can only truly be defined completely when implemented and would have to be “maintained” periodically (At the mo at least once a year)

  16. AAMC 16

    The root problem is an un-managed endogenous monetary system which has inflated assets out of sycnc with income for 30 years.

    All of these other things are factors, sure, but until there are some measures to reign in the banks, it’ll be a very short lived band aid. We have to start having that conversation if we really want to tackle property prices, there are more than 100,000 of us, and it’s a societal systemic issue, which prevents even those on high incomes from participating in the broader economy as all their income is tied up in mortgage debt.

    If they’re being released onto the market that is, rather than being State houses. I don’t know the details of the policy, that’s why I’m asking

    Are there measures to stop an investor from buying as rentals, or to flick once they inevitably inflate to meet the rest of the market?

    Here’s Keen yesterday on Capital account > http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KXGqnu5RA-E

  17. Binders full of women 17

    Since a lot of this will be aimed out west ..here’s some Waitakere-man thoughts.
    Pros- Govt can be involved in housing & building as it has size and regulatory clout and we are at the mercy of a duopoly of suppliers for building materials now.
    Cons- Annette King looked weak when challenged on where the 50k sections would be found in Auckland..her reply “some will be more expensive” so others will have to be less expensive to balance out..hmm less than 50k sections?? There is NOTHING in this that stops a wealthy parent bankrolling 2 or 3 kids into the ladder, or renting them out to ‘flatmates’.. oh I see we are gonna need a Ministry of Inspections to go along with other pointless ministries. Final con- there is no crisis, just people who are too picky to go to the working class suburbs or move to the provinces. No one has a right to live in the now over-priced suburb in which they grew up in.

    • karol 17.1

      Picky?  I am in a “working class” suburb, out in Waitakere.  I and a few other middleclass, not-so-young people I know have had difficulty finding rental accommodation, at an affordable price, and near work.

      • Binders full of women 17.1.1

        Fair call- overstatement. I just also really worry hugely about the loss of greenbelt (out west esp) and the motorway grind. Do we now have to realise that if you want to/have to live in Auckland then the 1/8 acre paradise is no longer an option? The provinces could do with another 100,000 houses and 400,000 people.

        • karol 17.1.1.1

          Actually Bfow, I didn’t think it was so much an “overstatement”, as insulting.  It’s my guess you have not had to look for rental accommodation in Auckland recently, and/or have no idea how difficult it has become for people on low incomes to find somewhere affordable, safe and secure to live. 

          There IS a noticeable shortage of affordable accommodation. 

  18. pete 18

    100,000 in ten years. 27 per day.

    You’d have to be barking to believe these numbers. They’ll be lucky if they manage one per day.

    Where are they all going, anyway?

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • Housing crisis hurting export growth
    If Steven Joyce wants to revive his failing export growth target he needs to make sure the Government gets to grips with the housing crisis, says David Parker, Labour’s Export Growth and Trade spokesperson. “Our exporters are struggling to compete… ...
    3 days ago
  • Gallipoli’s lesson: never forget, never repeat
     A special monument to one of our greatest war heroes should be a priority for the new Pukeahu National War Memorial Park, Labour Leader Andrew Little says.  “This will honour the spirit of Lieutenant Colonel William Malone, who led 760… ...
    3 days ago
  • Minister for who? Women, or Team Key?
    Louise Upston yesterday broke her silence on John Key’s repeated unwanted touching of a woman who works at his local café, to jump to the defence of her Boss. Upston repeated Key’s apology but, according to media reports “she refused… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie MP
    3 days ago
  • Taxpayer bucks backing US billionaire
    Kiwis will be horrified to know they are backing a Team Oracle subsidiary owned by a US billionaire, Labour’s Sports and Recreation spokesperson Trevor Mallard says. It has been revealed today that a Warkworth boat building company, which is wholly… ...
    4 days ago
  • English’s sins of omission: ‘Nothing left to be done’ on housing
    When Bill English said ‘there is nothing left to be done’ on the Auckland housing crisis he had overlooked a few things – a few things, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says.  “He’s right if you ignore: ...
    4 days ago
  • Climate change now hurts Kiwis
    Kiwis have twice been given timely and grave warnings on how climate change will hit them in their hip pockets this week, says Climate Change spokesperson Megan Woods.  “The first is the closure of the Sanford mussel plant and the… ...
    4 days ago
  • Clean, green and chocolate!
    Like many people I absolutely love chocolate! But until recently I hadn’t given much thought to how it was grown and produced. Fair trade and ethical food production are core Green Party principles, so yesterday Steffan Browning and I were… ...
    GreensBy Mojo Mathers MP
    4 days ago
  • National admits loan shark law not up to it
    National has admitted new laws to crack down on loan sharks, truck shops and dodgy credit merchants aren’t up to the task of protecting vulnerable consumers, Labour’s Commerce spokesperson Kris Faafoi says. “Paul Goldsmith has acknowledged the laws might just… ...
    4 days ago
  • Power and the Prime Minister
    I’d like to acknowledge the young woman* who has publically told her story. It was a very brave thing to do. She kept her story very simple and focussed on her experience of what happened. It told of unwanted attention… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie MP
    4 days ago
  • Extra holiday offers time to reflect
    The Mondayisation of Anzac Day provides New Zealanders with an opportunity to spend more time with their families and their communities, Dunedin North Labour MP David Clark says. “This is the first time legislation I introduced, to have Anzac and… ...
    4 days ago
  • More angst and anguish for red zone locals
    Local residents will be bitterly disappointed by the Government’s cherry picking of the Supreme Court’s decision regarding compensation for red zoned property owners, Labour Canterbury Earthquake Recovery spokesperson and Port Hills MP Ruth Dyson says. “Home owners have taken all… ...
    5 days ago
  • Australia shows why we need a sovereign wealth fund now
    Australia has not managed its great mining boom well, says HSBC’s chief economist for Australia and New Zealand, Paul Bloxham. When times are good, governments need to save for the bad times that will inevitably follow, and this can be… ...
    GreensBy Russel Norman MP
    5 days ago
  • Pure Water- pure rip off
    New Zealanders’ rights to fresh water must be protected before commercial allocations are given, but the Government is allowing resources to be taken, says Kelvin Davis MP for Te Tai Tokerau.  “The Government needs to resolve the issue of water… ...
    5 days ago
  • Cabinet paper reveals weak case for Iraq deployment
    A heavily redacted copy of a Cabinet paper on New Zealand’s military deployment to Iraq reveals how weak the case is for military involvement in that conflict, says Labour’s Defence spokesperson Phil Goff.  The paper warns that given the failure… ...
    5 days ago
  • Malaysia’s booty is Kiwis’ lost homeownership dream
    It’s unsurprising the Auckland property market is so overheated when Malaysians are being told they can live large on Kiwi’s hard-earned rent money, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “A Malaysian property website lists nearly 4000 New Zealand houses and… ...
    5 days ago
  • Ministry’s food safety resources slashed to the bone
    The Ministry for Primary Industries’ failure to monitor toxic and illegal chemicals in red meat is a dereliction of duty, Labour’s Primary Industries and Food Safety spokesperson Damien O’Connor says. “MPI compliance officer Gary Orr today admitted National’s much-vaunted super… ...
    5 days ago
  • Ministry must protect organic food industry
    The Ministry for Primary Industries must take urgent action to protect New Zealand’s $150 million organic food and beverage industry by establishing a certification regime, Labour’s Primary Industries spokesperson Damien O’Connor says. “Despite working with Organics Aotearoa on the issue… ...
    6 days ago
  • Tony Abbott, indigenous rights, and refugees
    This week, Tony Abbott has visited Aotearoa New Zealand, bringing with him his racist policies against indigenous Australians and his appalling record on refugee detention camps. Abbott has launched a policy “to close” remote aboriginal communities, which is about as… ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty MP
    6 days ago
  • PM’s housing outburst bizarre
    Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford has described the Prime Minister’s latest comments on the Auckland housing crisis as bizarre. “John Key is deep in denial. He must be one of the only people left who are not concerned about the risk… ...
    7 days ago
  • Deflation: Another economic headache linked to housing crisis
    National’s housing crisis is causing even further damage with the second consecutive quarter of deflation a genuine concern the Reserve Bank can do little about, as it focusses on Auckland house prices, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “This is… ...
    7 days ago
  • Pot calling the kettle black over fossil fuel subsidies.
    Over the weekend alongside nine other countries the New Zealand Government has endorsed a statement that supports eliminating inefficient subsidies on fossil fuels. Fossil fuel subsidies are a big driver of increasing emissions. Good on the Government for working internationally… ...
    GreensBy Gareth Hughes MP
    7 days ago
  • At last – a common sense plan for Christchurch
    The Common Sense Plan for Christchurch released by The People’s Choice today is a welcome relief from the shallow debate about rates rises versus asset sales, Labour’s Christchurch MPs say. "Local residents – who have spent weeks trawling through the… ...
    1 week ago
  • National must lead by example on climate change
    The National Government must meet its own climate change obligations before it preaches to the rest of the world, Labour's Climate Change spokesperson Megan Woods says. "Calls today by Climate Change Minister Tim Groser for an end to fossil fuel… ...
    1 week ago
  • Biosecurity rethink a long time
    The Government has opened New Zealand’s borders to biosecurity risks and its rethinking of bag screening at airports is an admission of failure, Labour’s Primary Industries spokesperson Damien O’Connor says. Nathan Guy today announced a review of biosecurity systems in… ...
    1 week ago
  • Chinese rail workers must be paid minimum wage
    KiwiRail must immediately stop further Chinese engineers from working here until they can guarantee they are being paid the New Zealand minimum wage, Labour’s MP for Hutt South Trevor Mallard says. The Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment today released… ...
    1 week ago
  • Better consultation needed on Christchurch asset sales
    The Christchurch City Council (CCC) should be promoting wide and genuine public consultation on its draft ten year budget and plan given the serious implications for the city’s future of its proposed asset sales, outlined in the plan. Instead, it… ...
    GreensBy Eugenie Sage MP
    1 week ago
  • ‘Healthy Families’ a good start but not enough to tackle obesity relate...
    Today the Government is making a the meal out of the launch of its ‘Healthy Families’ package to promote ‘healthier decisions’ and ‘changing mindsets’ over nutrition, physical activity and obesity. Great! The programme is based on a successful model from… ...
    GreensBy Kevin Hague MP
    1 week ago
  • ‘Healthy Families’ a good start but not enough to tackle obesity relate...
    Today the Government is making a the meal out of the launch of its ‘Healthy Families’ package to promote ‘healthier decisions’ and ‘changing mindsets’ over nutrition, physical activity and obesity. Great! The programme is based on a successful model from… ...
    GreensBy Kevin Hague MP
    1 week ago
  • No more sweet talk on obesity
    The Government should be looking at broader measures to combat obesity rather than re-hashing pre-announced initiatives, Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King says.  “While it is encouraging to see the Government finally waking from its slumber and restoring a focus on… ...
    1 week ago
  • Government two-faced on zero-hour contracts
    The Government should look to ban zero-hour contracts in its own back yard before getting too high and mighty about other employers using them, Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King says. “Information collated by Labour shows at least three district health… ...
    1 week ago
  • Scrutiny of battlefield deaths should continue
    As New Zealand troops head to Iraq under a shroud of secrecy, the Government is pushing ahead with legislation to remove independent scrutiny of incidents where Kiwi soldiers are killed in hostile action overseas, Labour’s Defence spokesperson Phil Goff says.… ...
    1 week ago
  • Damp-free homes a right for tenants
    Labour is urging tenants to use a little known rule which gives them the right to live in damp-free rental homes. Otago University researchers have today highlighted the Housing Improvement Regulations 1947 as a way tenants can force landlords to… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • National must take action on speculators
    The Government must take action on property speculators who are damaging the housing market and shutting families and young people out of the home ownership dream, Labour Leader Andrew Little says.  “There are a number of options the Government could… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Milk price halves: A $7b economic black hole
    Global milk prices have halved since the peak last year, creating an economic black hole of almost $7 billion that will suck in regions reliant on dairy, crucial industries and the Government’s books, says Labour’s Finance Spokesperson Grant Robertson. “The… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Kitchen plan set to swallow up health boards’ funds
    The financial impacts of implementing a proposal to outsource hospital food, forced on them by a crown-owned company which is now facing an auditor-general’s inquiry, are being felt by district health boards across the country, Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Reserve Bank scathing of Government
    The Reserve Bank’s most scathing critique to date of National’s inability to handle the housing crisis shows the Bank is sick of having to pick up the pieces, Labour Leader Andrew Little says.  “John Key continues to deny there is… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Time for McDonald’s to upsize work hours
    Labour is calling on McDonald’s to have more respect for their workers and offer them more guaranteed work hours. McDonald’s is proposing to guarantee its workers 80 per cent of their rostered hours, Labour’s spokesperson for Labour Issues Iain Lees-Galloway… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Brownlee misses the boat on asbestos
    Gerry Brownlee has once again missed an opportunity to improve the lives of Cantabrians post-earthquakes, Labour’s Canterbury Earthquake Recovery spokesperson Ruth Dyson says. A new report from the Royal Society of New Zealand and the Prime Minister’s Chief Science Adviser,… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Government must come clean on troop deployment and protections
    New Zealanders deserve more than to hear about their troops’ deployment overseas from Australian media, Opposition Leader Andrew Little says. “News from Australia that Kiwi troops are on their way to Iraq this week is another example of the culture… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Cancer prevention calls gain momentum
    Research showing bowel cancer treatment sucks up more public health dollars than other cancers once again highlights the need for a national screening programme, Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King says. A study by Otago University, which found colon cancer is… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Burger King shows zero-hour contracts not needed
    The abandonment of zero-hour contracts by Burger King is further evidence good employers do not need to use them, Labour’s spokesperson on Labour Issues Iain Lees-Galloway says. "Congratulations to the Unite Union and Burger King for settling an employment agreement… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Kiwis deserve more than reheats
    The Government looks set to rely on regurgitated announcements for this year’s Budget if today’s speech is anything to go by, Labour Leader Andrew Little says. “National has been building up to this Budget for seven long years, promising a… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Landlords not cashing in on insulation schemes
    The fact so few landlords have taken up the generous taxpayer subsidy for retrofitting shows it is time to legislate minimum standards, says Labour’s Associate Housing spokesperson Poto Williams. “Many landlords aren’t using Government insulation schemes because they don’t want… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Zero excuses, end zero hour contracts now
    It’s time Workplace Relations Minister Michael Woodhouse cut the weasel words and banned zero hour contracts, Labour Leader Andrew Little says. “Michael Woodhouse today acknowledged zero hour contracts are unfair. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • We’ve reached Peak Key with ‘artificial target’
    John Key’s attempt to redefine his cornerstone promise of two election campaigns as an artificial target suggests his other promises are works of fiction, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “For seven years and two election campaigns, John Key has… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Top 10 need to know facts on climate change
    All the numbers and stats around climate change can be confusing, so we’ve put together a handy list of the top 10 numbers about climate change that we should all know- and then do something about. You can sign up here to… ...
    GreensBy Frog
    2 weeks ago
  • Campbell Live a bastion of investigative journalism
    The announcement that current affairs programme Campbell Live is under review and may be axed has sparked outrage from the New Zealand public, for good reason, says Labour’s Broadcasting Spokesperson Clare Curran. “Investigative journalism is a precious resource in today’s… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Ground Zero for ‘disastrous’ contracts
    Yesterday the Green Party called on the Government to follow the leadership of Restaurant Brands and ditch zero-hour contracts. Currently it looks like the Government is a large part of the zero-hours problem. It allows these types of “non-jobs” to… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie MP
    2 weeks ago
  • Trust in National will disappear with deficit
    Bill English is set to break his promise to get the books back in the black this year and lose the trust of Kiwis who have had to do it too hard for too long, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Dorothy Jelicich passes away
    It is with sincere sadness that the Labour Party conveys its sympathies and condolences to the bereaved family of Dorothy Jelicich who passed away last night at the age of 87 years, says the MP for Mangere, Su’a William Sio.… ...
    2 weeks ago

Public service advertisements by The Standard

Current CO2 level in the atmosphere