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NRT: “Shoulder-tapping” vs public service values

Written By: - Date published: 11:39 am, April 23rd, 2014 - 59 comments
Categories: accountability, Politics, public services - Tags:

no-right-turn-256No Right Turn points out the other issue with Shane Jone’s “new” job. The jobs for cronies with taxpayer money.

Another angle to the Shane Jones resignation:

Mr Jones said he would leave Parliament next month after he was shoulder tapped by Foreign Minister Murray McCully for a new role as a roving economic ambassador across the Pacific.

This is of course a total violation of public service values, and an unlawful exercise of Ministerial power.

For more than a hundred years, New Zealand has had a professional, politically neutral public service. In 1912 the Public Service Act removed Ministers from the appointment process, ending their ability to treat the public service as a means of rewarding their cronies. That ideal is given modern form in section 33 of the State Sector Act, which requires Chief Executives to act independently in employment matters, including appointments, promotions, demotions, transfers, disciplinary proceedings, or sackings. Chief Executives are explicitly not responsible to Ministers for these decisions. Ministers “shoulder tapping” preferred candidates for public service roles is precisely what the law is supposed to prevent. Instead, it looks like we’re back to Seddon and his infamous “learn him”.

Just a few years ago, both a Minister and a Chief Executive were forced to resign over unlawful interference in employment matters (the former by demanding that someone be sacked, the latter for obeying, then bowing to the “suggestion” of the next Minister to employ a crony). That lesson appears not to have been learned. Clearly we need to put some more heads on spikes, until Ministers and Chief Executives start obeying the law.

59 comments on “NRT: “Shoulder-tapping” vs public service values”

  1. Sacha 1

    McCully has form for constantly interfering in Ministries he oversees. Didn’t he get fired from government in the late 90s for doing exactly that?

  2. Marksman33 2

    Fuck,it never ends.

  3. Maryan Street 3

    This is pure McCully: reach way down into the public service and pull out those whom he doesn’t want and install those he does. I have criticised him every time he has done it, both in the Overseas Aid and the State Services portfolio. Even as recently as yesterday. The list of professional casualties is growing by the day, as is the list of beneficiaries. I am promoting nothing less than a wholesale review of the state services. Get back to 1912 principles, I say.

    • Puckish Rogue 3.1

      Jones didn’t have to take the role but he obviously saw more of a future in the offered role then in a labour opposition

    • One Anonymous Bloke 3.2

      ..and put heads on spikes.

      If it’s illegal why aren’t the courts involved?

      • Puckish Rogue 3.2.1

        Fortunately just because the left doesn’t like something doesn’t mean its against the law

        • One Anonymous Bloke 3.2.1.1

          If you can’t see that removing political interference from public service appointments would apply equally to Ministers from all parties then I can’t help you.

          • Puckish Rogue 3.2.1.1.1

            Well how about we go through the process of how it actually happened before we start deciding its illegal, you know due process and all that stuff

            • One Anonymous Bloke 3.2.1.1.1.1

              I can’t imagine a more obvious example of interference than a shoulder-tap.

              This government has a habit of appointing people this way, and before you say it I’m sure Labour did it too.

              How many tonnes of powdered milk will Oravida have to sell to afford the kind of donations that buy appointments as well as audiences and promotional photographs?

              • Puckish Rogue

                🙂 keep talking about Oravida its doing wonders for the left 🙂

                • anker

                  Sure does do wonders for the left, that’s because there is a real issue here, mark my words.

                  • Puckish Rogue

                    No there isn’t, its a beltway issue but by all means keep going on about it 🙂

          • srylands 3.2.1.1.2

            It is not a public service appointment. If you don’t get that I can’t help you.

            • Lanthanide 3.2.1.1.2.1

              So who would Shane Jones be ‘serving’, if not ‘the public’?

              • srylands

                The Government. He will not be serving the public at all. And he will not be a public servant.

        • srylands 3.2.1.2

          How so?

      • Once was Pete 3.2.2

        Because it is not illegal. I can tell you for a fact that both Labour and National ministers have appointed from outside when they deemed there was good reason.

    • Blue 3.3

      1912 principles eh? Is that how far back you want to take the country Maryan? Please make it an election slogan.

      • Hanswurst 3.3.1

        I’m sure Labour would be happy to adopt that slogan… if National adopted the slogan, “We don’t know what principles we want, so actually we’re quite happy to let them slip back to a time before 1912, although we haven’t really thought too hard about what that means, or something… dunno.”

      • karol 3.3.2

        Early Labour Party principles, implemented in accordance with 21st Century circumstances seem good to me – better than the return to Victorian times that NAct are taking us to:

        Labour speech from 1912:

        <blockquote>"We intend to gather in all classes of the community. There are some people who are under the impression that the party comprises onlylabourers and waterside workers. This is not so. ' The Labour Party is to include all sections of useful people. We ■wish, to gather in the people of the town, of the country, the shopkeeper, the farmer, or any useful person who is prepared to stand shoulder to shoulder •with us in the fight against privilege aud monopoly."

        […]
        Street cars, gas and so on, should be in the hands of the municipality, and the railways controlled by, the Government.

      • felix 3.3.3

        That word, principles. It always confuses the righties.

  4. Once was Tim 4

    Public Service values? There haven’t been any since the mid 1980’s. It’s something the NZ Labour Party need to re-learn.
    Christ – we don’t even have a Middle or Senior PS management who abide by a basic code of conduct. It’s all very ISO900 – the standards and procedures that only need to be documented, and then promptly discarded when inconvenient.
    It’s why the peons work in spite or their management, rather than because of them.
    Hey – got any airpoints going spare bro?

  5. Matthew Poole at Public Address:

    Before anyone chimes in to echo No Right Turn’s suggestion that McCully appointing Jones as an ambassador is illegal, I’ll point out that heads of mission/heads of post are appointed by “the Governor General”, and we all know what that means.

    This reeks to high heaven, and it looks worse, but from a legal/procedural standpoint it’s entirely legitimate for the Minister to establish a new diplomatic role with the status of a head-of-mission/head-of-post and pluck out a sitting MP to fill said role.

    http://publicaddress.net/system/cafe/hard-news-jones-the-contender-leaves/?p=311017#post311017

    Just passing this comment on.

    • wtl 5.1

      Rich of Observationz at Public Address:

      He’s going to be a “roving economic ambassador across the Pacific”.

      Is that a head of mission / head of post?

      head of mission means a person who is appointed by the Governor-General to be—
      (a)High Commissioner for New Zealand in any Commonwealth country, or in the Cook Islands; or
      (aa)High Commissioner for New Zealand in Niue; or
      (b)Ambassador of New Zealand to any State that is not a Commonwealth country; or
      (c)head of mission for New Zealand at any international organisation; or
      (d)head of mission for New Zealand (not being a high commissioner or ambassador) to any State

      head of post means a person who is not a head of mission but is appointed by the Governor-General to be the head of a New Zealand government office in any State

      I don’t think some sort of “roving ambassador” post counts. The only way they could elevate that role would be to create a special government office on some Pacific island, and even then one could argue that a “post” is the sole NZG diplomatic presence in a state, so could not be in a place where we already have one.
      http://publicaddress.net/system/cafe/hard-news-jones-the-contender-leaves/?p=311022#post311022

      Just passing this comment on.

      • Pete George 5.1.1

        Matthew Poole again:

        They could appoint him as Ambassador/HoM for New Zealand to the Pacific Islands Forum, which is a treaty-established international organisation. We do not appear to have representation there at present, and it would work perfectly in terms of the focal area of the Forum (of which NZ is a member).

        Do not underestimate McCully’s cunning.

        • One Anonymous Bloke 5.1.1.1

          :roll:

        • wtl 5.1.1.2

          I’m not going to continue reposting a debate on another forum here. I have no idea why you are choosing to do so, my point was to simply counter your point which was apparently that “everything is perfectly legal and there is nothing to see here”.

          The thing is no one knows any details because nothing has been finalised. Until then, speculating is pointless. Regardless of the actual legality, the whole thing is unethical – a minister ‘shoulder tapping’ an opposition MP and creating a special role just for him? You seem to have a rather low standard of ethics.

          • Pete George 5.1.1.2.1

            I simply contributed information on the topic, I didn’t imply in any way that I thought everything was legal and there was nothing to see.

            The thing is no one knows any details because nothing has been finalised. Until then, speculating is pointless. Regardless of the actual legality, the whole thing is unethical – a minister ‘shoulder tapping’ an opposition MP and creating a special role just for him?

            You say no one knows any details, speculating is pointless – and then you speculate.

            • wtl 5.1.1.2.1.1

              I simply contributed information on the topic, I didn’t imply in any way that I thought everything was legal and there was nothing to see.

              Actually reposting the comment does imply that you thought that.

              You say no one knows any details, speculating is pointless – and then you speculate.

              Okay, let me rephrase because my point went over your head. The details surrounding this appointment are not yet clear, therefore speculating about the legality of the appointment is rather pointless. However, the appointment does appear to me to be unethical for reasons I outlined. Your failure to criticise this deal and you reposting comments indicating it is perfectly legal suggest that you do not find it unethical and I therefore believe that you have a low standard of ethics.

              • felix

                “That Pete George chap sure is a dishonest shitbag. He never owns anything he says.”

                Something I overheard someone say. Don’t mean to imply that I agree or disagree, just providing the information.

                :roll:

                • I don’t believe you. No evidence, and you have a habit of making things up. People here often call that sort of thing lying. That would make you a dishonest hypocrite.

                  • felix

                    Weirdly the next thing I overheard was “That Pete George, he exhibits no self-awareness at all. It’s like he has the soul of a mollusk, but without the self-awareness.”

                    Not that I agree or disagree. Many people post quotes here that don’t match their own thoughts. Often the opposite.

                  • Murray Olsen

                    I have been told that Pete George is a blithering idiot who has never been known to contribute anything worthwhile and waffles on, and on, and on, and on……. I don’t think the person who told me this was talking about another Pete George.

                    I won’t imply that I agree. I’ll be 100% specific about it.

              • Actually reposting the comment does imply that you thought that.

                No it doesn’t. You just assumed incorrectly.

                Many people post quotes here that don’t match their own thoughts. Often the opposite.

                • wtl

                  No it doesn’t. You just assumed incorrectly.

                  Yes it does. If I am wrong, you could simply clarify your actual opinion on the matter but you have not yet done so and instead appear to be trying very hard to avoid addressing the issue directly.

                  Many people post quotes here that don’t match their own thoughts. Often the opposite

                  Yes, and when they do they usually provide they own opinions or criticism of the quotes, rather than simply reposting comments from elsewhere with no comment of their own.

        • ghostwhowalksnz 5.1.1.3

          The Catholic Church have being doing this for millenia.

          A good number of bishops are appointed to ‘titular’ dioceses, which are generally ones that only exist on paper throughout Africa and Middle East. Back in the days before those pesky fellows Mohammed and Martin Luther came along.

          There has also been non existent cabinet posts as well- Vice President of the Executive Council anyone

  6. srylands 6

    The premise of this post is incorrect. It is an ambassador role, which is a Ministerial appointment. All governments have made extensive Ministerial appointments to overseas posts.

    So it is laughable to suggest it is unlawful.

    Arguably McCully has made such appointments more open by making them available to outsiders, including advertising diplomatic posts in the press for anyone to apply. Such openness has never happened before.

    So you may not like the result, but in criticising the process, you are displaying woeful ignorance of both the State Sector Act and the practice of all New Zealand Governments in such appointments since the 1950s!

    Very sloppy indeed.

  7. Skinny 7

    Shrillands has made a very good point, if incorrect please correct. It must be said that ethics wise very poor taking a plum appointment offered by your opposition.

    Winston gave Shane some very sound advice that National have under funded our Governments contribution to the pacific nations economic development in the tune of tens of millions. He also advised Jones to have a good lawyer to check over the employment contract carefully.

  8. Populuxe1 8

    You mean like Helen Clark shoulder-tapped Jim Bolger for Kiwibank?

  9. Foreign Waka 9

    The whole affair is a farce. Mr Jones is in my opinion an opportunist, given that he now implies that he better suited to a right leaning party. In other words, he did not get a leadership role so he is now searching for something else and to make it count under the Key Government. Tribal laws, tribal behavior and tribal government. There is nothing to say to this other than why bother to vote for anybody with this kind of going on. Who knows what the dealings behind the scenes are and quite frankly, I am loosing interest. Perhaps it is time to look for somewhere were some kind of law and order exists, meaning for EVERYBODY.

  10. Whatever next? 10

    Seems like National have strategically placed “their people” in all positions of influence.Not sure if this is a strategic position for Shane, more of a strategic distraction.

  11. emergency mike 11

    “…roving economic ambassador across the Pacific…”

    Where is this on the ‘Sweet Gig’ scale exactly?

  12. Jrobin 12

    Who cares, it’s great to see him gone. Kelvin Davis gets his chance to shine at last . Thank you National this will backfire Nicely.Shane can join with his kindred spirits at last and sail off into the sunset. David Cunliffe handled this with dignity too unlike the leering gloater we have the misfortune to call PM. I congratulate the protesters who egged the BMW ! And the children who showed more discernment than many adults by showing Key up. Kia kaha.

  13. red blooded 13

    Shane Jones is a self-interested blow-hard. It’s a pity he’s a bit of a media darling boy. I’ve worried about the high profile he’s had recently cos it’s seemed to me like an undermining of the actual leadership team. Having said that, it’s also a worry that there’s enough unhappiness and division in the caucus for him to throw a grenade like this at this stage if things. We can’t pretend that this is good news for Labour. Part if the problem, of course, is that we don’t see many sitting in caucus who have a proactive media presence and thus are seen as talented. I also think that the party has to actively rebut the “party of academics” label that’s being used as an insult (how dreadful – people who are trained thinkers on parliament!).

    As to whether this is legal, I suspect it pushes the boundaries significantly – where’s the open process that identifies a role and advertises it in irder to choose the best applicant? I’m sure people have been shoulder-tapped in the past, but at the very least there should be a chance for others to apply and for their skills and experimences to be weighed up against a job description.

    Overall though, I see this more as an issue of ethics (on the SJ/Nat side) and team management (on the Labour/Cunliffe side).

  14. red blooded 14

    What are you questioning? That SJ is a self-interested blow-hard? That his media presence has been undermining for the leadership team? That more in Labour need strong media skills? That the lack of open process and opportunism inherent in this appointment push ethical boundaries? That the whole situation suggest problems within the wider caucus and in particular the relationships with the management team..?

    Notice how I manage to be specific?

  15. red blooded 15

    Just an observation: the order of these comments is mangled (it may be different if I wasn’t using my phone?). Plus, Srylands, you seem to be living in the past. I’ve suspected it for some time, and now the date label on your latest comment confirms it.

  16. No matter how obvious it seems, we still have to go through the due process and all that stuff.

  17. Let’s just hope that due process is properly served.

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  • Gordon Campbell on the rise of the far right, and battle bots
    In his victory speech at the Cannes film festival this week, the British film director Ken Loach warned that the rise of far right parties in Europe was being fuelled by the economic policies of austerity, and manifested in a… ...
    1 day ago
  • Why Corrections prevented Tony Robertson from getting treatment in prison
    Tony Robertson was sentenced to eight years in prison for indecently assaulting a five year old girl in 2005. He was considered a high risk prisoner and the parole board declined to release him on four separate occasions.  He was… ...
    PunditBy Roger Brooking
    1 day ago
  • Have We a Housing Policy?
    The Prime Minister’s announcement that there is nothing new about homelessness is both an example of his strengths in reassuring the public that there is never really a problem and the weaknesses of the government’s policy approach..read more ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    1 day ago
  • Have We a Housing Policy?
    The Prime Minister’s announcement that there is nothing new about homelessness is both an example of his strengths in reassuring the public that there is never really a problem and the weaknesses of the government’s policy approach..read more ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    1 day ago
  • Climate denial arguments fail a blind test
    As we saw in the recent legal ruling against Peabody coal, arguments and myths that are based in denial of the reality of human-caused global warming rarely withstand scientific scrutiny. In a new study published in Global Environmental Change, a team led by Stephen Lewandowsky… ...
    1 day ago
  • Palmerston North librarians gather to support UCOL colleagues
    At 5pm today at the UCOL Library, representatives of library staff from the City Library, Massey, Te Wānanga o Aotearoa, and local schools will meet in a show of support for UCOL Library staff whose jobs are threatened. “We all… ...
    1 day ago
  • Accountability for Iraq?
    Six years after it was established, the Chilcot Inquiry into the UK's involvement in the Iraq war is finally about to report back. And from the sound of it, its going to pin the blame squarely where it belongs: on… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 day ago
  • Accountability for Iraq?
    Six years after it was established, the Chilcot Inquiry into the UK's involvement in the Iraq war is finally about to report back. And from the sound of it, its going to pin the blame squarely where it belongs: on… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 day ago
  • Not Quite But Getting There
    It seems that Labour might have finally gotten the memo about getting it’s A into G but perhaps not quite digested the content. Still it’s a start. The last month has seen a steady stream of both Labour and Little… ...
    1 day ago
  • Climate change: The latest inventory
    The annual inventory report [PDF] of our greenhouse gas emissions was released on Friday. The headline data: emissions are still increasing: There's been another "recalculation" in the last 12 months, making year-to-year comparisons difficult. Naurally, this seems to have shifted… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 day ago
  • Climate change: The latest inventory
    The annual inventory report [PDF] of our greenhouse gas emissions was released on Friday. The headline data: emissions are still increasing: There's been another "recalculation" in the last 12 months, making year-to-year comparisons difficult. Naurally, this seems to have shifted… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 day ago
  • Australia lets kiwi detainees literally rot
    What are our "closest friends" Australia doing to kiwis awaiting deportation? Letting them literally rot away in prison due to substandard medical care:A New Zealander held at an Australian immigration detention centre will find out today if his leg has… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • Australia lets kiwi detainees literally rot
    What are our "closest friends" Australia doing to kiwis awaiting deportation? Letting them literally rot away in prison due to substandard medical care:A New Zealander held at an Australian immigration detention centre will find out today if his leg has… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • CRL already impacting land use on city fringe
    The City Rail Link will be one of the most transformational projects Auckland has ever seen. Perhaps nowhere else will see experience that transformation more than the inner west of the isthmus which effectively gets picked up and moved much closer to… ...
    2 days ago
  • CRL already impacting land use on city fringe
    The City Rail Link will be one of the most transformational projects Auckland has ever seen. Perhaps nowhere else will see experience that transformation more than the inner west of the isthmus which effectively gets picked up and moved much closer to… ...
    2 days ago
  • National should give us our $13,000 back
    We all know that National works for the rich and screw over ordinary New Zealanders to funnel wealth upwards into the pockets of its rich mates. But how bad have they been? $13,000 bad:Yesterday, Mr Little said that since National… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • National should give us our $13,000 back
    We all know that National works for the rich and screw over ordinary New Zealanders to funnel wealth upwards into the pockets of its rich mates. But how bad have they been? $13,000 bad:Yesterday, Mr Little said that since National… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • Access: The Universal Basic Income and its implications for citizenship
    The suggestion about a possible Universal Basic Income (UBI) was only one of numerous suggestions to come out of Labour’s Future of Work initiative. This a wide-ranging policy discussion that the Party’s economic development spokesman, Wellington Central MP Grant Robertson,… ...
    2 days ago
  • Access: The Universal Basic Income and its implications for citizenship
    The suggestion about a possible Universal Basic Income (UBI) was only one of numerous suggestions to come out of Labour’s Future of Work initiative. This a wide-ranging policy discussion that the Party’s economic development spokesman, Wellington Central MP Grant Robertson,… ...
    2 days ago
  • Review: The Block Party
    Did New Zealand’s 'premier urban music' event live up to the hype?   Photo: Nicole Semitara Hunt ‘Old school’ was the name of the game on Friday night at The Block Party, where several thousand converged on ASB… ...
    2 days ago
  • Hard News: The media awards are dead – long live the media awards!
    Friday's Canon Media Awards was the most interesting instance of the long-running national ceremony in a long time, maybe ever. There were notable insurgencies – The SpinOff took two awards from 11 first-time nominations, Radio NZ's The Wireless won Website… ...
    2 days ago
  • Hard News: The media awards are dead – long live the media awards!
    Friday's Canon Media Awards was the most interesting instance of the long-running national ceremony in a long time, maybe ever. There were notable insurgencies – The SpinOff took two awards from 11 first-time nominations, Radio NZ's The Wireless won Website… ...
    2 days ago
  • New research confirms water fluoridation does not cause bone cancers
    The most common type of bone cancer is Osteosarcoma. Image credit:  Osteosarcoma This time for Texas. A new study confirms what other researchers have found elsewhere. It is reported in this recent paper: Archer, N. P., Napier, T. S., & Villanacci, J. F. (2016).&hellip; ...
    2 days ago
  • Redline on the Labour Party
    No-one on the anti-capitalist left in this country today puts forward a case that Labour is on the side of the working class.  There are certainly people who call themselves ‘socialist’ who do, but they are essentially liberals with vested… ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 days ago
  • Selfie-takers think they’re the greatest
    Science says otherwise.  “People often perceive themselves as more attractive and likable than others [perceive them to be].” This is the cutting conclusion from a new study that has found you're probably not as great as you think you… ...
    2 days ago
  • UCOL cutting the staff who lifted student results
    UCOL needs to halt its proposed cuts to student support services now that it knows those services are improving student outcomes. On Friday, in an email to all staff, UCOL released its provisional 2015 Educational Performance Indicator (EPI) results which… ...
    2 days ago
  • Another Road Only Harbour Crossing on the Cards?
    The absence of rail as well as walking and cycling options to the North Shore has been considered an oversight by many probably ever since the Harbour Bridge was first approved for construction over 60 years ago. While Skypath will… ...
    2 days ago
  • Leaked UK Briefing Shows NZ-EU Trade Deal is a Sham
    Press Release – New Zealand First Party Rt Hon Winston Peters New Zealand First Leader Member of Parliament for Northland 23 MAY 2016 Leaked UK Briefing Shows NZ-EU Trade Deal is a Sham The Prime Ministers EU trade deal… ...
    Its our futureBy ScoopBlogPush
    2 days ago
  • Gordon Campbell on bank scandals and air crashes
    Libor. It stands for the London Interbank Offered rate. Back in 2012, Libor became synonymous with a scandal involving the dodgy manipulation of how interest rates were fixed – during the years before and after the Global Financial Crisis –… ...
    2 days ago
  • March Against Monsanto
    Press Release – TPP Action Waikato March Against Monsanto (MAM)is a global form of action aimed at informing the public, calling into question the long term health risks of genetically modified foods and Roundup ready crops.Today Waikato people rally, at… ...
    Its our futureBy ScoopBlogPush
    2 days ago

  • Key’s “brain fart” on tax cuts news to English
    John Key didn’t tell his own Finance Minister he was about to go on radio and announce he wanted $3b of tax cuts, just days after Bill English ruled them out, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “In Parliament today… ...
    10 hours ago
  • What I’m looking for in Budget 2016 – A better start for our tamariki
    Ensuring the best start for our tamariki is a priority for me in everything I do. And so in Budget 2016, my first budget as an MP, I looking for the Government to make a real investment in the wellbeing… ...
    GreensBy Marama Davidson
    11 hours ago
  • What I’m looking for in Budget 2016 – A better start for our tamariki
    Ensuring the best start for our tamariki is a priority for me in everything I do. And so in Budget 2016, my first budget as an MP, I looking for the Government to make a real investment in the wellbeing… ...
    GreensBy Marama Davidson
    11 hours ago
  • Denise Roche: What I’m looking for in Budget 2016 Pt II
    Aotearoa’s new New Zealanders,  come to our country in vulnerable position: – often away from the culture, communities and families they know, sometimes in neighbourhoods without familiar faces and often encountering barriers to employment. With net migration at 50,000+ a… ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche
    15 hours ago
  • Equal Pay and Budget 2016
    The last few years we’ve seen equal pay for women flagged as an undefined risk in the budget. This year we should expect to see this, as well as budgeted money to deliver equal pay to caregivers and funding for,… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    17 hours ago
  • Equal Pay and Budget 2016
    The last few years we’ve seen equal pay for women flagged as an undefined risk in the budget. This year we should expect to see this, as well as budgeted money to deliver equal pay to caregivers and funding for,… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    17 hours ago
  • A great Budget would
    A great Budget would embrace the challenge of our polluted rivers and move the money away from justifying the status quo water rules into cleaning up waterways. A great Budget would take the Ministry for the Environment freshwater budget and… ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty
    17 hours ago
  • Budget building materials policy backfires
    On the eve of this year’s Budget official figures show Nick Smith’s Budget 2014 centrepiece to reduce the cost of building materials has backfired, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment officials have spent the… ...
    17 hours ago
  • Smarter, Better, Cleaner, Stronger
    This Thursday Bill English will deliver his eighth Budget. Will it continue the trend of previous National budgets, making tertiary education less affordable, putting only token funds into innovation, and subsidising polluters? Budgets aren’t what they used to be. Once… ...
    GreensBy Gareth Hughes
    18 hours ago
  • Govt must come clean on tax cuts in Budget
    National is making a mockery of the Budget process by dangling the promise of tax cuts but failing to include them in the Budget, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “National’s tax cut promises have turned into a farce. One… ...
    2 days ago
  • Grant Robertson Pre-Budget Speech
    Today I want to talk about success. As we know success can come in many different forms, from the fact you all made it here at such an early hour on a Monday, for which I am very grateful, to… ...
    2 days ago
  • Budget must deliver for middle New Zealand
    The Government must ensure next week’s Budget stops the squeeze on middle New Zealand and delivers shared prosperity for all New Zealanders, Leader of the Opposition Andrew Little says. The call follows new research commissioned by Labour that shows working… ...
    2 days ago
  • Our housing emergency – why we have to act
    Marama and Metiria at Homes Not Cars launch On Thursday, Metiria Turei announced the Green Party’s plan to start addressing the emergency housing crisis facing our country. Too many people are without homes right now – homeless. It is the… ...
    GreensBy Marama Davidson
    4 days ago
  • Will funding boost for sexual violence services go to the right places?
    This week the Government announced $46million for sexual violence services. This announcement was a result of decades of work by advocates and everyone who submitted to the Select Committee inquiry into funding for sexual violence services that I initiated with… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    4 days ago
  • Will funding boost for sexual violence services go to the right places?
    This week the Government announced $46million for sexual violence services. This announcement was a result of decades of work by advocates and everyone who submitted to the Select Committee inquiry into funding for sexual violence services that I initiated with… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    4 days ago
  • Denise Roche – What I’m looking for in this year’s Budget
    Two of the things I’ll be looking for in the Budget next week are more funding for refugees and for our arts and culture sector. More funding for refugees I’m a strong supporter of the #DoubleTheQuota campaign and its goals… ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche
    4 days ago
  • Denise Roche – What I’m looking for in this year’s Budget
    Two of the things I’ll be looking for in the Budget next week are more funding for refugees and for our arts and culture sector. More funding for refugees I’m a strong supporter of the #DoubleTheQuota campaign and its goals… ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche
    4 days ago
  • Car rego victims must get a refund
    Motorists who have been overcharged for their car registration should get a refund, says Labour’s Transport spokesperson Sue Moroney.  “Minister Nikki Kaye’s ‘faulty risk’ rating scheme has blown up in her face with over 170 different models of car having… ...
    5 days ago
  • Council statement shows they just don’t get it
    The Auckland Council’s statement today shows they don’t understand the problems created by the urban growth boundary, says Labour’s housing spokesperson Phil Twyford.  “I have been the first to defend the Auckland City Council when Bill English has been blaming… ...
    5 days ago
  • Inspecting electronic devices a potential privacy threat
    Labour is expressing concern for New Zealanders’ privacy rights as the Government signals Customs will have the power to inspect electronic devices coming across the border, says Labour’s Customs Spokesperson Rino Tirikatene. “We agree that customs officers should have the… ...
    5 days ago
  • The Price of Water
    This week I hosted a public meeting at EIT in Hawkes Bay to discuss how we might put a price on the commercial use of water, so that water may be valued and treated more sustainably. I invited a… ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty
    5 days ago
  • Caption It NZ!
    Today I received a petition from the NZ Captioning Working Group urging the government to legislate for accessibility via closed captioning for deaf and hard of hearing New Zealanders. It was timely because today is the fifth Global Accessibility Awareness&hellip; ...
    GreensBy Mojo Mathers
    5 days ago
  • Older Kiwis to miss out on electives
    The Government is not doing enough elective surgery to keep up with New Zealand’s ageing population, says Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King.  “It’s damning that the targeted national intervention rate for cataract and knee and hip surgery is the same… ...
    6 days ago
  • Most principals say their college is underfunded
    The Government must substantially increase funding for secondary schools in next week’s Budget after a new survey found 86 per cent of principals consider their college under-resourced, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “Just 14 per cent of secondary principals… ...
    6 days ago
  • Bill English and Nick Smith on different pages
    The Government’s support for Labour’s policy to remove the Auckland urban growth boundary is good news, but National needs to clarify its position, Labour’s Housing and Auckland Issues spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “The Acting Prime Minister has acknowledged our position… ...
    6 days ago
  • Bill English and Nick Smith on different pages
    The Government’s support for Labour’s policy to remove the Auckland urban growth boundary is good news, but National needs to clarify its position, Labour’s Housing and Auckland Issues spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “The Acting Prime Minister has acknowledged our position… ...
    6 days ago
  • Labour calls for independent inquiry into illegal fish dumping
    The Labour Party is reiterating its call for an independent inquiry into New Zealand’s fishing industry after two reports revealed the Ministry for Primary Industries turned a blind eye to widespread fish dumping in New Zealand waters, says Labour’s Fisheries… ...
    6 days ago
  • Mt Karangahake and Newcrest Mining
    On Wednesday and Sunday of last week the local residents of the Karangahake mountain in the Karangahake gorge of Hauraki/Coromandel peacefully protested against a gold mining drill rig on private land adjacent to the DOC land. The drilling rig was… ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty
    6 days ago
  • Robbing Aucklanders to pay Rio Tinto
    New Zealand’s national electricity grid stretches the length of the country and contains some 11,803 kilometres of high-voltage lines and 178 substations. It wouldn’t make sense for competing power companies to duplicate and build their own expensive electricity transmission system… ...
    GreensBy Gareth Hughes
    6 days ago
  • Government should abolish Auckland urban growth boundary
    The Government should rule out any possibility of an urban growth boundary in Auckland Council’s Unitary Plan if it is serious about fixing the housing crisis, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “Over 25 years the urban growth boundary hasn’t… ...
    7 days ago
  • Kiwis don’t want iPads for Land deals
     It is outrageous that schools are relying on money and iPads from foreign land investors to meet the learning needs of their students, says Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins.  “Several OIO land applications by offshore investors have claimed that without… ...
    7 days ago
  • Homelessness – National has failed all of us
    A young South Auckland Māori woman recently tried to get hold of me around midnight. I missed her call. The woman wanted me to know the sharp reality facing too many families looking for a stable place to live. Things… ...
    GreensBy Marama Davidson
    1 week ago
  • Moko case should never have been manslaughter deal
    Confirmation again yesterday that the manslaughter charge in the Moko Rangitoheriri case was a deal done by the Crown Prosecution Service is justifiably the cause of outrage, says Labour’s Children’s spokesperson Jacinda Ardern.“This should never have been a case where… ...
    1 week ago
  • Overseas investor funds school’s digital devices
    The Government must address the inequality laptops and tablets in classrooms are causing after a Queenstown school was forced to use a donation from an overseas investor to get their students digital devices, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins. “Documents obtained… ...
    1 week ago
  • Child Youth and Family Review and Domestic Violence
    This Government has consistently failed to recognise the links between Child Youth and Family Services (CYFS) and intimate partner violence. For me, the recent review of CYFS has highlighted this misunderstanding of the dynamics of domestic violence and its impacts… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    1 week ago
  • Child Youth and Family Review and Domestic Violence
    This Government has consistently failed to recognise the links between Child Youth and Family Services (CYFS) and intimate partner violence. For me, the recent review of CYFS has highlighted this misunderstanding of the dynamics of domestic violence and its impacts… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    1 week ago
  • Canterbury rebuild: How wood is a better choice for the new city
    It was interesting to attend the ForestWood Conference in Auckland recently and learn about the extent of innovation in the wood processing and manufacturing sector. The forestry sector may be New Zealand’s third largest export earner, but raw logs make… ...
    GreensBy Eugenie Sage
    1 week ago
  • Canterbury rebuild: How wood is a better choice for the new city
    It was interesting to attend the ForestWood Conference in Auckland recently and learn about the extent of innovation in the wood processing and manufacturing sector. The forestry sector may be New Zealand’s third largest export earner, but raw logs make… ...
    GreensBy Eugenie Sage
    1 week ago
  • Key plucks $3b out of thin air – reckless and irresponsible
    John Key refuses to give up on his dream of tax cuts to the wealthy, despite being shot down by Bill English, and is resorting to plucking numbers out of thin air, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “On radio… ...
    1 week ago
  • John Key woefully out of touch on homelessness
    John Key is completely out of touch if he thinks desperate South Auckland families forced to live in cars can simply go to Work and Income for help, Opposition Leader Andrew Little says. “Many of these families are working and… ...
    1 week ago
  • Under-reporting shows need to review quota system
    The Government must launch an independent review into New Zealand’s 30-year-old Quota Management System following a new report suggesting gross under-reporting of catch in the New Zealand fishing industry, Labour’s Environment spokesperson David Parker says.  “The Auckland University report found… ...
    1 week ago
  • Investigations into tertiary institutions overdue
    A Tertiary Education Commission investigation into the Tai Poutini Polytechnic is overdue and should have been launched last year, Labour’s Associate Education (Tertiary) spokesperson David Cunliffe says. “Labour has been calling for an inquiry into potential rorts at Tai Poutini… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Investigations into tertiary institutions overdue
    A Tertiary Education Commission investigation into the Tai Poutini Polytechnic is overdue and should have been launched last year, Labour’s Associate Education (Tertiary) spokesperson David Cunliffe says. “Labour has been calling for an inquiry into potential rorts at Tai Poutini… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Where is the fair share for most New Zealanders?
    Most New Zealanders reading the news that chief executive pay has risen 12 per cent in the last year will be wondering when they are going to get their fair share, Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson says. “More and more… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Where is the fair share for most New Zealanders?
    Most New Zealanders reading the news that chief executive pay has risen 12 per cent in the last year will be wondering when they are going to get their fair share, Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson says. “More and more… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Mega media merger is bad news
    Some people call newspapers “tomorrow’s fish and chips” but this week’s news around a mega media merger is not an issue we should discard. Media giants Fairfax and APN News & Media announced they were in discussions to merge their… ...
    GreensBy Gareth Hughes
    2 weeks ago
  • Mega media merger is bad news
    Some people call newspapers “tomorrow’s fish and chips” but this week’s news around a mega media merger is not an issue we should discard. Media giants Fairfax and APN News & Media announced they were in discussions to merge their… ...
    GreensBy Gareth Hughes
    2 weeks ago
  • National puts Easter trading in the too hard basket
    All Labour MPs will vote against National’s move to leave Easter trading laws up to councils, Labour’s Workplace Relations spokesperson Iain-Lees Galloway says.  “Despite this being a conscience vote, Labour MPs are united in their opposition to the Government’s moves… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • National puts Easter trading in the too hard basket
    All Labour MPs will vote against National’s move to leave Easter trading laws up to councils, Labour’s Workplace Relations spokesperson Iain-Lees Galloway says.  “Despite this being a conscience vote, Labour MPs are united in their opposition to the Government’s moves… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Law Commission speaks up for domestic violence survivors
    I want to give kudos to the Minister for Justice for getting the Law Commission to review options for how our justice system responds when victims of domestic violence kill their partners. This is a relatively discrete piece of work… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    2 weeks ago

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