web analytics

On the tip of his tongue

Written By: - Date published: 9:26 am, October 30th, 2012 - 35 comments
Categories: bill english, housing - Tags:

It was almost funny listening to Bill English on Checkpoint. He had identified all, or at least most of, the problems with housing in Auckland: in short, nobody’s building affordable houses, the prevelance of bespoke houses pushes up prices, and speculative capital raises them even more. But his solutions were all, well, not solutions. Try to make consenting (which is quick by international standards) even quicker, more sprawl.

He was particularly funny on the bespoke housing issue. I’ll paraphrase because I can’t be bothered transcribing but, basically, he said ‘the problem is, we don’t have much in the way of  large scale developers’. Hmm, I thought. If only Mr English knew of a large organisation, say the largest homeowner in New Zealand, that has historically taken the lead in development. Then, English reiterated his line that no-one’s been building entry-level homes since the 1970s. And I thought, hmmm, I wonder who was building all those entry level homes before the neoliberal revolution and whether that organisation might still be around. To round it off, his lamented that there was no-one with the capital needed for this scale of work and that there was a danger that, left to the private-sector developers, Christchurch would be rebuilt with expensive sprawl housing that no-one could afford to buy.

It was funny because the answer was right in front of him – as finance minister it is literally at his fingertips – but his ideological blinkers prevented him from seeing them.

Get the bloody government to do it, Bill. You own plenty of land, you’ve got the capital, and the State isn’t (or shouldn’t be) out to make a quick buck so it can do low-return affordable housing. Just do what the State used to do – come up with a few dozen (energy-efficient, eco-friendly) modular designs and get building.

With efficiencies of scale, you can get the homes built for around $200,000 each (that’s what a basic eco-home from Lockwood costs). Think of the number of houses that a billion a year could build – and that’s chump change to a government that has spent $280 billion in four years. And how many jobs would that create?

It’s sensible, simple, and we’ve done it before the neoliberal revolution (in other words, just the kind of idea that sends Granny Herald into fits). But English just can’t go there. It’ll work but he would rather come up with his ‘do nothing’ plan and fail, just as he has on the economy.

We need a government that can go there, that can adopt sensible, economic, and sustainable solutions on housing.

35 comments on “On the tip of his tongue”

  1. vto 1

    Good post James.

    100 to 120 m2 houses at around $1,500 m2 – you’ll get them done for under $200,000. No need for fancy this and that, just straight forward build. Don’t need a garage.

    Bill English is either thick or ideologically blind.

    • One Tāne Huna 1.1

      either thick or ideologically blind.

      The former probably begets the latter.

    • aerobubble 1.2

      Worse. English made the open promise that he would do nothing about it when he said it will take years to turn around (i.e. not on his watch buddy). When added to the obvious he’ll do nothing to change the macro-economic incentives (CGT) or deal to the micro-economic problems (since that Auckland councils problem). The only thing that changed was he was moved to recognize the problem, wait, how long has he been in government, how long has the housing bubble been on the radar? No, worse! English is essentially admitting Key’s government will lose the election because obviously Key’s finance minister would not be out in front undermining Key so spectacularly. Reminds me of the other English bid to undermine Key, when he commented on the costs of imprisonment.

      Key is a pathetic PM. PM serve all the people, and young people need homes, so start building them damnit, rich people want profits, young need homes to have families in so that rich people can make profits.

      • vto 1.2.1

        Yep aero, it seems Bill English could learn a lesson or two from Henry Ford who was credited with improving the lot of the poorer…. so that they could buy his cars!

        • aerobubble 1.2.1.1

          Hey! Ford was a capitalist, he knew he needed higher wages for his consumers. English and Key are their lordships, as long as their Lordships are earning who gives a toss that the serfs aren’t getting enough food, or living in damp ghettos.

    • Rob 1.3

      Lets hope they would be an improvement on the un-insulated , asbestos – fibro planked long stilt houses from the 70’s.

    • infused 1.4

      Have you built a house recently? My dad just finished his. He said to me, building it yourself, you save nothing.

      They are building cheap houses around where I live… they basically have a 10 year life span. go go cheap housing.

      • Rob 1.4.1

        Really , a 10 year life span, so they dont comply with the Durability Clause in the building code where all structural items must have a durability of 50 years. Interesting.

  2. ianmac 2

    Decades ago the State Advances loaned money for basic housing at about 3% interest. As long as basic restrictions were followed the house was built. Whatever happened to that and could the Government restart it? Maybe a good platform for Labour/Greens? It was possible capitalise the Child Allowance too which was a step up. But no Child Allowance these days.

    • ianmac.

      A wonderfull scheme .Labour should have bought it back as soon as they were returned.Rather sad that they did not . Let’s hope the next Labour led governmment does bring something simular back
      and enables working people to buy a decent house with out going bankrupt. A whole package is needed that makes loans payable has insurance and makes sure the house is built without faults like leaking aand lax building practice .Older members will rememberv the building inspectors State Housing loans had attached . No building fault passed their beady eye . Result well built comfortable houses owned by working people. The envy of the world. Bring it back..

  3. vto 4

    This government is providing up to $400 million for a few farmers to irrigate their land in Canterbury.

    So how about a similarly large scaled building programme of housing?

    The poor are not their voters that’s why.

    • tracey 4.1

      while selling our eco systems down the river (pun intended)… farmers who choose to run dairy cows on land that is subject to drought or is arid deserve no assistance… this is subsidising bad business choices.

  4. shorts 5

    all well and good and I agree with your points… but will the opposition parties be doing or promoting such solutions? Or will it just be financial tinkering (capital gains tax et al) to address the over pricing issue they push?

    I’d suggest any policy that gives those on lower incomes a chance of home ownership and some basic security might just get many who didn’t vote last time round out and voting again – ie actual real hope for a better future for them and their kids

  5. karol 6

    If Bill can’t quite find the words for what to do, he should talk to Paula Bennett.  According to Mana, they want a Paula Bennett Housing Policy.  It goes like this:
     

    In an interview early in her political career Social Development Minister explained her circumstances to a journalist who reported it like this:
     
    “When she was only 19, Paula Bennett was on the Domestic Purposes Benefit but was able to buy her own home in Taupo with a Housing Corporation loan for $56,000. Bennett said she’d worked part-time but that she “pretty much fell apart because I was exhausted and I went back on the DPB”.”

     
    I would go for the increase of state housing option, and provide more homes for rent generally at affordable rents.
     
     
     
     

  6. Draco T Bastard 7

    You own plenty of land, you’ve got the capital, and the State isn’t (or shouldn’t be) out to make a quick buck so it can do low-return affordable housing.

    The state doesn’t need a return – just enough to cover maintenance. That’s why the capitalists don’t like the government doing stuff as they will lose out as everyone goes for the much cheaper and just as good government supplied houses.

    We need a government that can go there, that can adopt sensible, economic, and sustainable solutions on housing.

    So, one with neither National nor Labour leading it.

  7. ghostwhowalksnz 8

    You could build a house for $1200 to $1400 per sq m if you sought out and paid for each sub contractor yourself.
    A major builder charges about $2200 per sq m for the same work. And they can get even better prices than above. Effectively its a 50% markup just for managing the site and paying the bills

    • KJT 8.1

      That is bollocks.

      A builder is lucky to get 10% over wages, for himself, on a build.

      Not really a good return for chasing up all the contractors and holding liability for the guarantee.

      You are looking in the wrong place.

      Houses are cheaper in Australia even though builders get nearly double the wages.

      However it is possible to build a decent 3 bedroom for under 150k.

      Or it was when builders were allowed to design.

      The right answer to affordable housing is above. Return to State houses. Preferably financed by ourselves, not overseas borrowing.
      Getting rid of the building supplies duopoly wouldn’t hurt also!

      Worked a treat from 1935 until the neo-liberal thieves decided to de-construct our society.

  8. s y d 9

    Nothing to do with housing, all to do with LAND…..the whole affordable housing issue is simply a means by which the current landholdings of a few VIP’s (and former MP’s) can be compulsorily re-zoned from rural to residential, providing a short term massive windfall profit (e.g Tauranga land values – rural $10/m2 residential $70/m2 current land values) for the current land shark owners.
    See Bob Clarkson’s supposed ‘affordable’ housing scheme on the outskirts of Tauranga……700% returns!! any takers??

  9. tracey 10

    I’m sitting in an office dealing on a daily basis with issues involving, inter alia, large scale developers… they definitely exist. Not sur eif that is a good thing…

    I heard him on Checkpoint last night, at least she held his feet tot he fire. I almost got the sense she gave up, could almost see her rolling her eyes. It was another example of

    – it doesn’t matter what the question is, my answer will be [insert policy spin here].

    Interesting to hear this morning that now it appears affordable doesn’t mean cheaper… just not more expensive… SO with people struggling now on wages that aren’t going up anytime soon, how will this be affordable?

    I would also like to see the directors of development companies giving 10 year personal guarantees on their developments. Builders now have to give a ten year personal liability guarantee (by virtue of being Licensed Building Practioners) so why not the developers who make the calls about quality by virtue of the money calls they make… but take profit, wind up company, open a new company and start a new project.

    I see NO political will to make this simple change in eithe rof our main parties.

    • Draco T Bastard 10.1

      I see NO political will to make this simple change in eithe rof our main parties.

      Holding the rich accountable? Not going to happen.

    • KJT 10.2

      I would like to see building suppliers held to the same warranty.

      It would help if those responsible for the last “de-regulation of the building industry” to “cut red tape” were held liable also.

      Imagine if politicians, lawyers, company directors and managers and organisations such as f– farmers were held to the same standards of personal liability as builders and ship’s officers??

      • tracey 10.2.1

        +1

        Easy enough to do. Make alaw change, they have no problems changing employment law at will.

  10. tracey 11

    Why does Billkeep letting himself carry the can… he’s not housing minister, or good-time minister where are the housing minister and smiling Dunnokeyo to front this GREAT policy to help the poor get homes (like John’s mum)

  11. Richard Down South 12

    Indeed, the govt would make the money from the taxes off PAYE…

  12. peter martin 13

    And why is there not enough capital,Minister?
    Because of your short-sighted interest rate policy that you have prescribed for the reserve bank.
    Now,if you got the reserve bank to increase interest rates to a level that would attract savings you would at long last see some domestic investment capital being accumulated.
    And look,it would also have the not inconsiderable side benefit that you would not have to battle those objectional people that object to you selling our assets overseas.
    In other words,Minister,it is the answer to several of your problems.
    Willie Getonwithit

  13. Georgecom 14

    English and his Govts whole approach to solving housing can be described this way:

    They attempt to make the problems sound like a solution. That is, by explaining at some length the problems with housing affordability, they try to pass that off as their ‘plan’ to combat it. ‘We have identified the issues, therefore, we have explained our plan to overcome it’.

    Really, however, yet another example of a ‘do nothing government’ that has plagued NZ for the past 4 years on the issues that really count. A lot of effort spent recounting the issues yet precious little actual solution.

    • tracey 14.1

      ….you are right and forgot to add, they cana ct very quickly on employment law changes… then tell us to be patient on others.

  14. Some seventy years ago New Zealand was in a similar situation and one Michael Savage had the solutions. It is about time we learned the lessons from our history: http://localbodies-bsprout.blogspot.co.nz/2012/06/lessons-in-history.html

  15. Morgan 16

    The National government also ditched Labour’s assistance to first home buyers, and an act which allowed Council’s to use inclusionary zoning – which requires new developments to include a proportion of affordable housing.

    As someone who has worked in government (mainly HNZC) for a while, it is very depressing to see successive governments continually re-identify an existing problem as if it is something brand new, take years to get around to doing something, usually just in time for the government to change and start all over again.

    The answers to affordable housing are easy to find, but hard to implement. This is all nothing new, it is not unique to NZ, and has been addressed overseas. And as plenty of people note in the comments – it’s been dealt with here in the past too.

Links to post

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • Brexit vote costs NZ effective EU voice
    Despite being extremely close the result of the referendum in Britain reflects the majority voice, Labour’s Foreign Affairs spokesperson David Shearer says. “While we respect the decision to leave the EU, it goes without saying the move will usher in ...
    11 hours ago
  • Pasifika Education Centre doomed
    The Pasifika Education Centre appears doomed to close down this December, says Labour’s Pacific Island Affairs spokesperson Su’a William Sio  “In a written question I asked the Minister whether he would put a bid in for more money. His answer ...
    17 hours ago
  • Onetai Station review a shameful whitewash
    A report released today on the Overseas Investment Office’s (OIO) good character test is a whitewash that does nothing to improve New Zealand’s overseas investment regime, says Labour’s Land Information spokesperson David Cunliffe. “The review of the good character test ...
    18 hours ago
  • We need a national strategy to end homelessness now
    Long before I entered Parliament, housing and homelessness were issues dear to my heart. I know from personal experience just how hard it is to find an affordable home in Auckland. In my maiden speech, I talked about how when ...
    GreensBy Marama Davidson
    22 hours ago
  • Capital feels a chill economic wind
      Wellington is on the cusp of recession with a sharp fall in economic confidence in the latest Westpac McDermott Miller confidence survey, says Labour’s Regional Development spokesperson David Clark.  “Economic confidence amongst Wellingtonians has dropped 12% in the past ...
    1 day ago
  • Dive school rort took six years to dredge up
    News that yet another private training establishment (PTE) has rorted the Government’s tertiary funding system since 2009 shows that Steven Joyce has no control of the sector, says Labour’s Associate Education (Tertiary) spokesperson David Cunliffe. “Like Agribusiness Training and Taratahi, ...
    2 days ago
  • National’s housing crisis hitting renters hard
    National’s ongoing housing crisis is causing massive rental increases, with Auckland renters being hit the hardest, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. ...
    2 days ago
  • A Day with the PSA
    This week, along with Labour MP Kris Faafoi, I accepted an invitation to spend a day working alongside the good folk at the Public Service Association in Wellington. As the Workplace Relations and Safety spokesperson for the Greens, I was ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche
    2 days ago
  • A Day with the PSA
    This week, along with Labour MP Kris Faafoi, I accepted an invitation to spend a day working alongside the good folk at the Public Service Association in Wellington. As the Workplace Relations and Safety spokesperson for the Greens, I was ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche
    2 days ago
  • Government holds Northland back
    New information shows Northland remains the most economically depressed region in New Zealand, says Labour’s Regional Development spokesperson David Clark. “The latest Westpac McDermott Miller regional survey found that more Northlanders believe their local economy will deteriorate this year than ...
    2 days ago
  • Rebstock report into MFAT leaks a disgrace
    An Ombudsman’s report on the Paul Rebstock investigation into MFAT leaks shows the two diplomats at the centre of the case were treated disgracefully, says Labour’s State Services spokesperson Kris Faafoi.  “The Ombudsman says one of the diplomats Derek Leask ...
    2 days ago
  • More families forced to turn to food banks for meals
    Increasing numbers of families are having to go to food banks just to put a meal on the table, according to a new report that should shame the Government into action, says Labour’s Social Development spokesperson Carmel Sepuloni. ...
    2 days ago
  • We have a housing emergency in New Zealand
    Auckland, New Zealand, where house prices have risen 20 percent in the last year alone We have a housing emergency in New Zealand.  Like many people we are ashamed and angry that in a wealthy country like ours, we have ...
    GreensBy Eugenie Sage
    3 days ago
  • We have a housing emergency in New Zealand
    Auckland, New Zealand, where house prices have risen 20 percent in the last year alone We have a housing emergency in New Zealand.  Like many people we are ashamed and angry that in a wealthy country like ours, we have ...
    GreensBy Eugenie Sage
    3 days ago
  • Aussie reforms signal trouble ahead for school funding plan
    Plans by the Government to return to bulk funding are likely to see increased class sizes and schools most in need missing out on much-needed resources, Labour’s Acting Education spokesperson Grant Robertson says. “The signaled return to bulk funding is ...
    3 days ago
  • Toxic Sites – the down low on the go slow
    In  2011, I negotiated an agreement with the National Government to advance work on cleaning up contaminated sites across the country. This included establishing a National Register of the ten worst sites where the creators of the problem could not ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty
    3 days ago
  • Aucklanders face new motorway tax of up to $2500 a year
    The Government wants to tax Aucklanders thousands of dollars a year just to use the motorway network, says Labour’s Auckland Issues spokesperson Phil Twyford. “Officials estimate the average city commute is 11.8km. This means for the average Aucklander commuting five ...
    3 days ago
  • 15 corrupt bank managers identified in student fraud
    New information show 15 bank managers in India have been identified by Immigration New Zealand as presenting fraudulent documents on behalf of foreign students studying here, Labour’s Immigration spokesperson Iain Lees-Galloway says. “Documents obtained by Labour under the Official Information ...
    3 days ago
  • National leaves Kiwi savers the most vulnerable in OECD
    News last week that Israel’s Finance Minister will insure savers’ bank deposits means New Zealand will be left as the only country in the OECD that has no deposit insurance to protect savers’ funds should a bank fail. Most Kiwis ...
    GreensBy James Shaw
    4 days ago
  • Comprehensive plan for future of work needed
    A Massey University study showing many New Zealanders are unaware of the increasing role of automation in their workplace, highlights the need for a comprehensive plan for the future of work, says Grant Robertson, Chair of Labour’s Future of Work ...
    4 days ago
  • Another National Government failure: 90 day work trials
    On Friday last week, the Treasury released a report by MOTU economic consultants into the effectiveness of the controversial 90-day work trial legislation. The report found that there was “no evidence that the policy affected the number of hires by ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche
    4 days ago
  • Iraq mission extension case not made
    The Prime Minister has not made the case for extending the Iraq deployment another 18 months nor the expansion of their mission, says Opposition Leader Andrew Little.  “Labour originally opposed the deployment because the Iraqi Army’s track record was poor, ...
    5 days ago
  • Denial is a long river
    William Rolleston from Federated Farmers made the absurd claim on RNZ on Saturday that “we actually have very clean rivers”. This statement doesn’t represent the many farmers who know water quality is in big trouble and are working to clean ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty
    5 days ago
  • Denial is a long river
    William Rolleston from Federated Farmers made the absurd claim on RNZ on Saturday that “we actually have very clean rivers”. This statement doesn’t represent the many farmers who know water quality is in big trouble and are working to clean ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty
    5 days ago
  • Melanoma deaths could be avoided by an early access scheme
      The tragic death of Dunedin’s Graeme Dore from advanced Melanoma underlines the cruelty of this Government in promising a treatment but delaying for months, says Labour’s Health Spokesperson Annette King.  “Graeme was diagnosed with Melanoma last year. He used ...
    5 days ago
  • Assessing the Defence White Paper
    The Government’s recently released Defence White Paper has raised questions again about New Zealand’s defence priorities, and in particular the level and nature of public funding on defensive capabilities. The Green Party has a longstanding belief that priority must be ...
    GreensBy Kennedy Graham
    5 days ago
  • Kiwis’ confidence drops again: Economy needs a boost
    Westpac’s consumer confidence survey has fallen for the seventh time in nine quarters, with middle income households ‘increasingly worried about where the economy is heading over the next few years’, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “This survey is a ...
    5 days ago
  • Relocation grant simply kicks can down the road
    The response by state house tenants and social agencies to the Government’s rushed plan to shift families out of Auckland tells us what we already knew – this is no answer to the chronic housing shortage, Opposition Leader Andrew Little ...
    5 days ago
  • Peace hīkoi to Parihaka
    On Friday a Green crew walked with the peace hīkoi from Ōkato to Parihaka. Some of us were from Parliament and some were party members from Taranaki and further afield. It was a cloudy but gentle day and at one ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty
    5 days ago
  • Children’s Commissioner right to worry about CYF transition
    The Government must listen to the Children’s Commissioner’s concerns that young people under CYF care could be ‘negatively impacted’ as the new agency’s reforms become reality, says Labour’s Children’s spokesperson Jacinda Ardern. “Dr Russell Wills has used the second annual ...
    5 days ago
  • Bill English exaggerates PPL costs to justify veto
    The Finance Minister has used trumped-up costings to justify a financial veto against parents having 26 weeks paid parental leave, says Labour MP Sue Moroney. “Bill English’s assertion on RNZ yesterday that the measure would cost an extra $280 million ...
    7 days ago
  • Government must refund overcharged motorists
    Labour is calling on the Government to refund motor registration fees to three-quarters of a million Kiwi motorists whose vehicles were wrongly classified under National’s shambolic ACC motor vehicle risk rating system, Labour’s ACC spokesperson Sue Moroney says.“Minister Kaye’s ridiculous ...
    1 week ago
  • 90-day work trials an unfair failure which must change
    A new Treasury report shows the Government’s 90-day trials haven’t helped businesses and are inherently unfair, Labour’s Workplace Relations spokesperson Iain Lees-Galloway says. “The Motu report found that 90-day trial periods had no impact on overall employment and did not ...
    1 week ago
  • Massey East houses a start but Nick Smith should think bigger
    The Massey East 196-home development is a start but the Government must think bigger if it is to end the housing crisis, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “It is great the Government is finally realising it needs to build ...
    1 week ago
  • More changes needed to ensure fewer cases like Teina Pora’s
    Teina Pora spent 21 years behind bars for a crime he didn’t commit, shafted by a Police investigation that prioritised an investigator’s hunch over the pursuit of credible evidence. Yesterday’s announcement that the government is to pay him $2.5m in ...
    GreensBy David Clendon
    1 week ago
  • New Zealand Labour sends condolences to UK
    The New Zealand Labour Party is sickened and saddened by the murder of British Labour MP Jo Cox, Labour Leader Andrew Little says. “Ms Cox was killed in cold blood while simply doing her job as a constituent MP. She ...
    1 week ago
  • Shameful refugee quota increase still leaves NZ at the bottom of the list
    Minister for Immigration Michael Woodhouse announced this week that the government will put off increasing the refugee quota by 1000 places until 2018.  It’s a shameful decision that undermines the Government’s claim that it takes its international humanitarian obligations seriously, ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche
    1 week ago
  • Paula Bennett as a victim hard to swallow
    The National Party spin machine has gone into overdrive to try and present Paula Bennett as the victim in the Te Puea Marae smear saga, says Labour Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “Bill English in Parliament today tried valiantly to paint ...
    1 week ago
  • Voters to have the final veto on paid parental leave
    New Zealanders will have the final right of veto on a Government that has ignored democracy and is out of touch with the pressures and demands on families, says Labour MP Sue Moroney. “Today’s decision by National to veto 26 ...
    1 week ago
  • Collins should put Kiwis’ money where her mouth is
    Labour’s Police spokesman Stuart Nash is calling on anyone who has received a speeding ticket for going up to 5km/h over the 100km/hr open road speed limit to write to him and he will take it up on their behalf ...
    1 week ago
  • Where is the leadership on equal pay for work of equal value?
    The gender pay gap in the public service is worse than in the private sector. I’ve always found this particularly galling because I expect our Government to provide an example to the private sector on things like human rights, rather ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    1 week ago
  • Kiwis’ real disposable income goes nowhere for the year
    New Zealanders’ hard work for the last year resulted in no increase in real disposable income, showing Kiwis aren’t getting ahead under National, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “Today’s GDP figures reveal that real gross national disposable income per ...
    1 week ago
  • Pora case a case to learn from
    Conformation that Teina Pora will receive $2.5million from the Crown for more than 20 years of wrongful imprisonment does not fix the flaws in our system that led to this miscarriage of justice, Labour’s Justice spokesperson Jacinda Ardern says. “The ...
    1 week ago
  • Government needs to start again with RMA changes
    The National Government’s proposed changes to the Resource Management Act have attracted more than 800 submissions, many of them critical of key aspects of the Resource Legislation Bill. There has been much criticism of the new regulation making powers given ...
    GreensBy Eugenie Sage
    1 week ago
  • Bennett’s briefing completely unacceptable
    It is completely unacceptable that Paula Bennett briefed her political staff on the police investigation into Hurimoana Dennis after her meeting with him, despite it having nothing to do with her social housing portfolio, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. ...
    1 week ago
  • Speech to Green Building Council
    Building smarter, greener cities It will be clear to anyone who has been watching the public debate on the housing crisis that housing in New Zealand is sadly far from being economically sustainable when Auckland has the fourth most unaffordable ...
    1 week ago
  • Paula Bennett has more questions to answer
    It is unthinkable that Paula Bennett’s press secretary went rogue and tried to smear the reputation of someone involved in helping the homeless, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “Political staff would not take such serious unilateral action without the ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Speech on Notice of Motion on Orlando
    Mr Speaker, The Labour Party joins with the government in expressing our horror at this atrocity and our love and sympathy are with the victims and their families. Our thoughts are with the people of Orlando and of the United ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Tiakina Ngā Wai – Swimmable Rivers Report June 2016
    The campaign to clean up our rivers was launched at the Green Conference at Queens Birthday weekend. However, the work prior to the launch goes back a number of years. Russel Norman and Eugenie Sage deserve full credit for the ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty
    2 weeks ago
  • We can do more: Refugee quota should be doubled
    New Zealand is a better country than National’s miserable increase in the refugee quota that ignores our obligations to the international community and people in need, says Opposition Leader Andrew Little. “It is a sad day when the Government can’t ...
    2 weeks ago

Public service advertisements by The Standard

Current CO2 level in the atmosphere