web analytics
The Standard

Sky City, pokies and corruption

Written By: - Date published: 7:56 am, May 13th, 2013 - 50 comments
Categories: accountability, capitalism, child welfare, corruption, democracy under attack, john key, Public Private Partnerships, same old national, slippery, Steven Joyce - Tags: ,

So John Key’s (and Stephen Joyce’s) National party made sure Gilmore was out of the way before they announced their dubious Sky City for (more) pokies deal.  The pokies system in NZ is rife with dubious goings on. An article this morning on Stuff, reports on Joyce’s announcement on RNZ:

A $350 million deal to supply Sky City Casino with more pokies in exchange for a national convention centre is set to be formally announced today.

The controversial deal will see Sky City build and operate a national convention centre in exchange for changes to existing laws over the operation of casinos.

Economic Development Minister Steven Joyce confirmed on Radio NZ this morning the deal would see more pokie machines at the casino.

The article recaps that a report by Deputy Auditor-General Phillippa Smithon the Sky City deal stated there was:

 … lack of documentation and analysis for the procurement process.

There was too much focus on the politics and commercial interest and not enough on proper process, Smith’s report said.

“Although decisions were made on the merits of the different proposals, we do not consider that the evaluation process was transparent or even handed.”

Pokies are about the most addictive form of gambling. I posted before on the problems of NZ’s pokie industry  in Pokies and corruption.  I’ll repeat my comments, without the quotes from articles:

How deep does it go?

Steve Kilgallon, in today’s Stuff [31 March 2013], is reporting that evidence of wrong doing by Pokie trusts, presented to Internal Affairs mysteriously went missing. The article, perhaps necessarily because of lack of evidence, provides the most positive slant on the disappearance, putting it down to sloppiness.

It is all a bit murky.  But back in November 2010 shortly after the investigation began, Graeme Ramsey of the Problem Gambling Foundation predicted there was more evidence of abuse of the funding of Pokies trusts to come.

It seems like some in the pokie industry have a lot of influence and a long reach.  Some in this industry benefited from John Key and Steven Joyce’s SkyCity convention centre deal.  The deal was made through flawed processes, as argued by the Green Party:

The end result of this flawed process was a deal that would include an increase in SkyCity pokie machines.  Meanwhile, increasing numbers of children are left unattended around SkyCity’s gambling areas.

Significant International Affairs files going missing, deals made through flawed government processes.

So NZ is not a corrupt country, then, just one governed through sloppy processes?

Cui bono?

[update: responses, opposition]

As reported by Adam Bennett and John Armstrong in the NZ Herald (Dunne will vote for the enabling Bill and the Maori Party against).  Planned “harm minimisation” procedures may be inadequate, and

Labour Leader David Shearer last night said his party objected to the deal on two ground.

The first was that it was “a shonky process”.

“Obviously there was a backroom deal done between John Key and and his mates at SkyCity,” he said.

“Secondly, I personally find it objectionable to build a convention centre effectively on the backs of problem gamblers.”

TVNZ reports, that there is still a question mark over the TVNZ land require for the convention centre site:

“John Key keeps saying this deal is good because it’s essentially free. The cost of the deal is the social harms caused by increased gambling,” said Green Party co-leader Metiria Turei.

She added Key “has got a lot of political capital riding on this deal happening and he is going to ram it through regardless”.

“I think SkyCity wants that land for free. I think they want this as part of the deal and that is the a cost to the Government and the public,” Turei said.

50 comments on “Sky City, pokies and corruption”

  1. CnrJoe 1

    this govt makes me feel dirty

    clean green nz – yeah – Right

  2. They have given Sky an extension of its licence to 2048 from 2021 as part of the deal …

    • DH 3.1

      What wasn’t mentioned in the news was that in conjunction with the extension they’ve also made an agreement to compensate SkyCity if any future government makes changes to gambling laws that might affect SkyCity’s profits.

      Pretty cosy deal huh. Guaranteed monopoly rights for the next 35 years.

  3. David H 4

    What I want to know is how much Key and co are going to make out of this in the long run?
    ie: share packages ‘just to show our appreciation’.

    Also it now shows the rest of the world the cost of doing business in NZ is cheap. Just take out the PM for dinner a few times, he won’t remember it.

  4. David H 5

    Why isn’t John Key announcing this? As it was all his back room dealings that made it happen. Or is it so poisonous that Key don’t want a bar of it? Or is Joyce being touted as the next leader because Key has had enough, and is pissing off to Hawaii to make a fortune off of what he knows about NZ?

  5. DH 6

    This is a black day for NZ. No-one can convince me that money hasn’t changed hands here, this ranks up with the worst commercial deals I’ve ever seen and I’ve made some boners of my own that I’d be embarassed to tell anyone about.

    The Govt has gifted SkyCity an enormous commercial advantage over every other business in Auckland and a person with Key’s background must surely know that. They’ve already been quietly building a small business empire and this gifts SkyCity more control over the CBD.

    SkyCity already have a monopoly on casino gambling in Auckland. Now they have a monopoly on convention centre business. I find it inconceivable that anyone with serious business nous would allow that to happen. We’ve got a supposed free-market mob in Treasury & the likes and they say nothing about a deal that’s as anti-competitive as you can get.

    The gaming concessions almost certainly represent the extra business that SkyCity expect to generate from the convention centre. They’ve just been gifted a new captive market of fresh meat who can be directed to stay at SkyCity hotels, eat at SkyCity restaurants, gamble at SkyCity casinos etc etc. As operator of the convention centre they’ll take a lot of the bookings and enquiries which is a hugely unfair commercial advantage.

    The media have failed us badly on this.

    • Rich the other 6.1

      DH,

      ( enormous commercial advantage over every other business ?? )

      It’s not a monopoly ,you can have one to , just come up with the money.

      Key expects up to 5 million tourists a year from China , many of them love to have a gamble.
      Big Chinese business will utilise the convention centre , combining work and recreation.

      It’s pay day, just get on with it.

      • Kelt 6.1.1

        Absolutely agree

      • DH 6.1.2

        Of course it’s a monopoly you cretin. SkyCity aren’t paying a cent for the convention centre, the gaming & licence concessions they’re receiving have been valued at the same cost as the centre. Who else can build a convention centre on those terms?

        • Rich the other 6.1.2.1

          DH,
          Isn’t that what I said , Just Come Up With The Money,
          Sky city have worked out a way to do it, you could try, good luck!

          The bottom line is , Tourists need attractions to spend their money on ,this is another option for them.
          Not all tourists want to wonder around the hills and if they did the greens would object ,they might tread on a worm or something.

          • karol 6.1.2.1.1

            Sky City were given opportunities to come up with the money, in a way given to no other organisation.

          • DH 6.1.2.1.2

            Pay attention Rich, we were talking about monopolies and anti-competitive behaviour here. I bet your school report card read “could try harder”

            • Rich the other 6.1.2.1.2.1

              DH,
              Lets invite in another big international casino operator , quadruple the amount of gambling facilities and they could build a second convention centre , would that make you happy??.

              NZ is not closed to other operators, it’s open to competition.

              Again , you to can have one , just come up with the money, sky city has.

              • One Anonymous Knucklehead

                Insider trading your way to brighter future?

              • Draco T Bastard

                Again , you to can have one , just come up with the money, sky city has.

                Actually, it hasn’t – the government has.

              • DH

                You’re not exactly impressing anyone with your business acumen here Rich. It obviously hasn’t occured to you yet that the Govt could simply have sold SkyCity the extra licences and then they’d have the cash to build a convention centre free of any onerous conditions or monopoly rights. Flush with cash they could then tender it out to to the best offer that benefits Auckland instead of a deal that benefits SkyCity.

                They could also have taken the opportunity to bring some competition to the casino industry by offering up the licences as a new casino licence. They could open it up to tenders from other casino operators who are very, very, keen to set up operations here and who would pay more than SkyCity just get a foothold in the NZ market.

                The Govt would collect more than $400million from that, we’d get all the economic benefits from building a new casino and we’d also get a free convention centre. How’s that for a great deal Rich?

                You see mate, even looking at it from a right-wing business perspective it’s still a lousy deal for the country!

                • Rich the other

                  O’dear ,another dreamer.

                  (1) I don’t know what a licence is worth but $400 million ???? your dreaming.

                  (2) You are suggesting we flood Auckland with casinos , you lefty mates would disown you.

                  • DH

                    Not very quick are you Rich. It pays to look before you leap, the licences that SkyCity are receiving in exchange for the centre have been independently valued at between $328 and $412 million. That’s their estimated market value buddy, try reading the reports on the deal before you mouth off.

                    Feel look a fool yet? You should…… dreamer

                    The lefties are smart enough to realise that another casino using the same licences would create no more gambling than giving SkyCity these extra licences. They wouldn’t like either option equally but they are a little better at applying the grey matter than you.

                    • Rich the other

                      DaH, you must vote green , your only possible excuse.

                      The Corda Mentha report you quote is a report for Sky City and the Govt , no other operator.

                      The value to sky is vastly different than to any other operator, the reason being for Sky it’s enhances their current operating business and for that they are paying a premium.

                      No other operator would set up a new business which can only have 260? pokie machines and a few more tables costing $406 million , it simply wouldn’t be viable.

                      The licence values quoted apply to sky city based on what its worth to them and them only, hence a win win situation for both party’s.

                    • One Anonymous Knucklehead

                      Sky City get profits. The National Party gets political donations. New Zealand loses, but only until the next election. If Sky City can’t make a profit without insider trading and bribes then they don’t deserve a licence.

                    • DH

                      “The value to sky is vastly different than to any other operator, the reason being for Sky it’s enhances their current operating business and for that they are paying a premium.”

                      You have a reading comprehension problem, which isn’t unusual for your kind. The report made it clear that the values were lower due to SkyCity’s existing operation, in that the new pokies & gaming tables wouldn’t get the same ulitisation as existing machines. To translate that it means they’re worth more to another party who would get the full use out of them.

                      “No other operator would set up a new business which can only have 260? pokie machines and a few more tables costing $406 million , it simply wouldn’t be viable.”

                      Only a fool would suggest that other casino operators wouldn’t be interested in buying gaming licences that a large accounting firm claimed would generate income of over $40million per year.

                      “The licence values quoted apply to sky city based on what its worth to them and them only, hence a win win situation for both party’s.”

                      Stop making stuff up, bullshit & bluster doesn’t work here.

      • freedom 6.1.3

        How is it a pay day for NZ, or were you just talking about the owners again?

        • Rich the other 6.1.3.1

          freedom , ( only prosperity will give you that)

          Kelt has given a pretty good idea on that .
          But just going over the obvious,
          Employment , taxes paid , gst on gambling ,profits for share holders which includes retirement funds eg kiwi saver, growth for AK economy and plenty of rub off for the rest of the community, tourists do visit and spend at other businesses.

          That’s not bad for starters is it, try to be a little more positive , it won’t hurt.

          • karol 6.1.3.1.1

            Jam tomorrow.

            • DH 6.1.3.1.1.1

              You might find this interesting Karol, it’s an independent valuation of the gaming licences & concessions the Govt are giving SkyCity.

              http://media.nzherald.co.nz/webcontent/document/pdf/201320/KordaMentha.pdf

              It refers to another report that estimates 70% of convention goers will visit the casino.

              The report also excludes future benefits derived from the monopoly rights such as more hotels etc, it’s basing valuation figures on existing capacity. It’s pretty clear that SkyCity are getting far more from this deal than they’re putting in.

              The most puzzling thing about this is that we don’t owe SkyCity anything. They exist solely at our favour, they enjoy monopoly casino rights that were granted by statute. There’s a queue of casino operators who’d pay a fortune for a licence to operate here so we have absolutely no reason or even the slightest obligation to do SkyCity any favours. They owe us and yet this Govt have been bending over backwards to pander to them. Have to wonder why…..

      • Murray Olsen 6.1.4

        They didn’t come up with the money. We did, via our ever generous prumstah. Sky City came up with a compliant prumstah.
        At the moment, we get about 2.5 million tourists a year from all countries. Key expects twice this from China alone? Where will they stay? Who will run the extra flights? He also expected Gilmore to be a good MP.
        Rich Chinese do not gamble at poker machines. Poor Kiwis with gambling problems or drug dealers with money to launder do.
        Why would all these Chinese business people come to Auckland for a convention? It won’t be to listen to your bullshit, that’s for sure.

        We have the worst type of corruption in the world. We can’t pay $20 to get off a traffic ticket, but a big company can pay a few million (refunded with interest by the present regime) to get industrial law changed. Just like our birthright of clean water, lush forests, and kaimoana, it is available and for sale to the rich.

  6. Kelt 7

    ACC is one of the largest shareholders in Skycity (approx 4% when I last looked). Many of the Kiwisaver funds are also significant shareholders
    The Governement has recently allowed visa concessions to Asian businessmen
    Sky city have been given permission by the Gambling Commission for overseas bank accounts.
    Sky City have been given permission from the Gambling commission for a revamped upper floor with private gaming rooms
    WHY
    The pokies were a smoke screen which sucked in every egotistical politicain and lazy journalist.
    Sky want to increase their revenue from international clients. (Its currentl;y around 3%. The Ozzy casinos get around 17%) The tables were what they were after. Its for their new private gaming rooms aimed specifically at the asian market

    And whats wrong with that. Im sick of the liars from the problem gambling foundation and green party’s, feathering their own nests by spouting of fraudulent tales of woe when the real story never got aired.

    Is it fair that Sky City targets high rolling asian punters. Yes or No

    • ghostrider888 7.1

      Yes, if costs to New Zealand society are ameliorated.

    • fender 7.2

      So a new sign outside will read: Asians Only. Yes or No?

    • prism 7.3

      Oh Kelt I hope you are rolling in it, whatever is important to you and nice, but I fear that outside of that you have a tainted smell which will grow to a stench, and even niceness can go bad given time..

    • Draco T Bastard 7.4

      The only people lying about this so far have been National but that’s normal for them.

  7. prism 8

    Sky City is introducing more measures to identify problem gamblers and stop them. Is that to identify which gamblers to facilitate and massage, and stop them leaving too early, ie before they have spent the week’s electricity and medicine money?

    We didn’t have pokies here before Roger Douglas and his band of hoons and smartarses got in and said that business was generic, so gambling to excess and drinking to excess is good business. Then they learned how it can be subtly encouraged by psychological measures and general PR advertising, while uttering weasel words about ‘individual’ control and assisting the ‘very few’ unhinged people who become addicted and sick and waste and damage their own lives and prosperity and spoil the lives of their connections.

  8. Martin Legge 9

    Steve Kilgallon’s article about a significant file being lost by internal affairs does give an impression of sloppiness but let say it is far more contrived than that. The lost file contained conclusive documents and testimony linking a pokie trust, The Trusts Community Foundation (TTCF) of West Auckland to serious illegal activity involving the approval of millions of dollars of grants from 3 South Auckland Bars back to the interests of Otago Rugby and Racing. Why? – because those interests had an ownership/interest in the bars and wanted all the proceeds for themselves while South Auckland communities were deliberately starved of those funds.

    At the time Senior DIA Mgt must have become aware the file was lost, rather than look for the file or simply go back to the persons who provided the information, they instead granted TTCF a “clean bill of health” and embarked on a campaign of covering up the loss and fudging the facts from Steve Kilgallon, the public, the OAG and even their own Minister (Chris Tremain), all the time knowing there will never be any repercussions or accountabilty for corporate pokie trusts from this Government.

    • ghostrider888 9.1

      there was a series ran in The Herald (or Dominion Post) on the corruption revealed by a former “Trusts” overseer; it was the messenger they came gunning for.

  9. Matt damon 10

    Matt Damon !

  10. “Greens co-leader Metiria Turei said the deal was “disastrous” but she had not yet sought legal advice on the implications of rejecting the deal.

    She said it could become a bottom line in future coalition discussions between the Greens and Labour and the Greens would want the legislation repealed.

    “Whether we can negotiation that with them in the future – we will see. The Green Party does not accept being held to ransom like this and will repeal this legislation if we get into Government,” she said.”

    Good on you, love.

    “Shearer said governments should be able to make changes to legislation but he would not make a commitment to stopping the deal, saying he would look at the fine print.”

    Friction burns on the palm of his right hand says what?

  11. Martin Legge 12

    The reason Labour is not all over the rorts within corporate pokie trusts but in particular The Trusts Community Foundation Ltd, is because West Auckland is David Cunliffe’s territory. He has saved their skins in the past and no doubt he’ll do it again. He is happy to come out against Sky City Casino because TTCF and its largest clients, the Portage and Waitakere Licensing Trusts, will have made it clear that more pokies at the casino will the gambling business out west.

    Interesting to hear on the Duncan Garner radio show how Sky City CEO, Nigel Morrison, produced stats that point to the fact that largest numbers of problem gamblers are caused by the bars and clubs scattered throughout our community and not casinos.

Links to post

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • Solarizing Greece with #PeoplePower is a way out of the crisis
    Greece is facing a depression on a scale arguably comparable to the US Great Depression of the late 1920s. Huge unemployment rates and a dramatic drop in family incomes of over 40 percent have Greek citizens pondering what the impacts will be… ...
    4 hours ago
  • July ’15 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
    Image credit: Rachel Knowles – Successful blogging workshop Big problems with Sitemeter The problems with SiteMeter are still bad  this month. No data could be obtained for about 50 blogs using SiteMeter. People have also reported strange results. So if… ...
    7 hours ago
  • NO DEAL IN MAUI!
    The post-Maui Ministerial Press Conference is just wrapping up, where Ministers yet again were unable to conclude a deal. The Press Conference was heavy on platitudes but light on detail of actual progress, with Ministers trailing out the oft-repeated mantras around… ...
    Its our futureBy Edward Miller
    7 hours ago
  • Time for a car free Domain?
    If New York can make most of Central Park car free, then why can’t we do the same with the Domain. That was my thought when watching this video from Streetfilms. Last week, people walking and biking on the Central… ...
    7 hours ago
  • Be Careful What You Wish For: What If The Government Rejects The TPPA?
    Grim Faces And Patriotic Words: With a few, well-chosen, words, Key could place the 2017 General Election beyond the Opposition’s grasp. The Left has been clamouring for New Zealand’s negotiators to reject the TPPA in its current form. But… ...
    12 hours ago
  • So what is the rationale for private prisons?
    . . On 14 December, 2010, there was great excitement and jubilation  in the Beehive when then-Corrections Minister Judith Collins announced; “This Government is committed to a world-class Corrections system in New Zealand. To achieve that, we must have access… ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    14 hours ago
  • So what is the rationale for private prisons?
    . . On 14 December, 2010, there was great excitement and jubilation  in the Beehive when then-Corrections Minister Judith Collins announced; “This Government is committed to a world-class Corrections system in New Zealand. To achieve that, we must have access… ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    14 hours ago
  • Stalled TPP chance for wider discussion
    Press Release – New Zealand Labour Party Failure to get the TPP agreement across the line gives New Zealanders an opportunity to put more pressure on the Government not to sign away our sovereignty, Opposition leader Andrew Little says.ANDREW LITTLE… ...
    Its our futureBy ScoopBlogPush
    16 hours ago
  • Time for the Govt to come clean on flailing TPP
    Press Release – Green Party The Government should come clean about what concessions it has already made and what issues have been left on the TPP negotiating table, the Green Party said today. 1 August 2015 Time for the Govt… ...
    Its our futureBy ScoopBlogPush
    17 hours ago
  • Groser proves trade credentials by insisting on a good deal
    Press Release – DCANZ – Dairy Companies Association New Zealand The Dairy Companies Association of New Zealand (DCANZ) is commending New Zealand Trade Minister, Tim Groser, for standing firm against enormous pressure to concede to a sub-standard deal for dairy.… ...
    Its our futureBy ScoopBlogPush
    17 hours ago
  • Groser disappointed TPP deal not reached
    Press Release – New Zealand Government Trade Minister Tim Groser is disappointed that the TPP negotiations were unable to reach a conclusion today, but TPP ministers collectively pledged to meet again as soon as possible to finalise the deal.Hon Tim… ...
    Its our futureBy ScoopBlogPush
    17 hours ago
  • Failed Trans-Pacific (TPP) talks show folly of trading
    Press Release – AFTINET The failure of TPP Ministers to reach agreement in what was supposed to be the final round of negotiations vindicates the deep concerns of community groups that the TPP is secretly trading away issues like access… ...
    Its our futureBy ScoopBlogPush
    17 hours ago
  • TPPA ministerial fails – time for NZ Govt. to cut losses
    Press Release – Professor Jane Kelsey The final ministerial meeting on the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA) in Maui has failed. Not opting to stay another day shows the gridlock is serious and potentially intractable, according to University of Auckland law… ...
    Its our futureBy ScoopBlogPush
    17 hours ago
  • Yet Another ‘Final’ TPP Ministerial and Again No Deal
    Press Release – Public Citizen’s Global Trade Watch Todays fourth final TPP ministerial without a deal means the clock has run on possible U.S. congressional votes in 2015. No deal means the TPP is thrown into the political maelstrom of… ...
    Its our futureBy ScoopBlogPush
    17 hours ago
  • No TPP deal in Maui, but Groser ‘extremely confident’
    Article – BusinessDesk Aug. 1 (BusinessDesk) – Intensive negotiations to seal the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade and investment pact in Hawaii this week have failed.No TPP deal in Maui, but Groser ‘extremely confident’ of conclusion + By Pattrick Smellie Aug. 1… ...
    Its our futureBy ScoopBlogPush
    19 hours ago
  • Tova O’Brien interviews Murray McCully
    Press Release – The Nation Headlines: With sanctions being lifted on Iran, McCully says there are big opportunities for New Zealand businesses in Iran and some have been giving the market a lot of thought. the opportunities are significant… ...
    Its our futureBy ScoopBlogPush
    23 hours ago
  • Affordable medicines at risk in trade deal
    Press Release – Doctors for Healthy Trade Once again the pharmaceutical industry is pumping out misleading information, suggesting that theres no need to worry about price hikes to New Zealand medicines under the Trans Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA) says… ...
    Its our futureBy ScoopBlogPush
    23 hours ago
  • Today’s awful politicians
    by Redliners “Labor is prior to and independent of capital. Capital is only the fruit of labor, and could never have existed if labor had not first existed. Labor is the superior of capital, and deserves much the higher consideration.”… ...
    RedlineBy daphna
    1 day ago
  • Not as much as it sounds
    According to TV3, the police are being inundated with OIA requests:Police are struggling to cope with the overwhelming number of Official Information Act (OIA) requests which flood their offices every day, and some of their time-saving measures are now prompting… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 day ago
  • Taxpayers condemned to a life sentence with Serco
    Public Service Association/Te Pukenga Here Tikanga Mahi (PSA) national secretary Erin Polaczuk and organisers Willie Cochrane & Nerinda Cropp will attend the privatisation protest outside Mt Eden Prison this Saturday, 1 August at 11am. ...
    1 day ago
  • Journalism isn’t treason
    Back in February, German news website Netzpolitik.org published stories based on leaked documents showing that the domestic intelligence agency BfV was seeking additional funding to increase online surveillance and monitor social media. The German government's response? Investigate them for treason:Germany… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 day ago
  • Questions in the House this week on TPPA.
    A busy time in the House this week with a lot of questions on the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement. James Shaw asking John Key about the benefits to the ICT sector and the risks of investor-state dispute settlement and Andrew Little… ...
    Its our futureBy Edward Miller
    1 day ago
  • Vice covers the latest TPPA leak: describes “horrorshow”
    Vice Magazine has an article by Jordan Pearson covering the latest TPPA leaks and concluding that the agreement is a “horrorshow” based on the leaked content. The Vice article gives a great introduction to the perils of a completed TPPA, including… ...
    Its our futureBy Sunil Williams
    1 day ago
  • Vice covers the latest TPPA leak: describes “horrorshow”
    Vice Magazine has an article by Jordan Pearson covering the latest TPPA leaks and concluding that the agreement is a “horrorshow” based on the leaked content. The Vice article gives a great introduction to the perils of a completed TPPA, including… ...
    Its our futureBy Sunil Williams
    1 day ago
  • Do we have enough trains?
    The new electric trains have by in large been a fantastic addition to Auckland. This is not to say that there haven’t been implementation issues however they are things that I expect Auckland Transport, Transdev, CAF and Kiwirail will iron… ...
    1 day ago
  • Do we have enough trains?
    The new electric trains have by in large been a fantastic addition to Auckland. This is not to say that there haven’t been implementation issues however they are things that I expect Auckland Transport, Transdev, CAF and Kiwirail will iron… ...
    1 day ago
  • Feeling aspirational
    Yesterday the Rich List showed the number of people who have over 50 million of wealth had increased by another 15 people since last year. Collectively this group are now worth 55 billion, an increase of over 7% since last… ...
    frogblogBy Jan Logie
    1 day ago
  • The end of the unarmed police force
    Since forever, the New Zealand police have been arguing for more and better weapons with which to intimidate the public. And once again, they've got what they want:New Zealand police will now routinely carry Tasers, it has been announced. Police… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 day ago
  • Music Will Save The World: Anna & Elizabeth
      ADAM WHITE, long-time anarchist and music aficionado, alerted me to Anna & Elizabeth – and I’m so pleased that he did. These two, superb, 25-year-old folk-singers, Elizabeth LaPrelle, from Virginia, and New Englander, Anna Roberts-Gevalt, have carved out an enviable reputation… ...
    1 day ago
  • Music Will Save The World: Anna & Elizabeth
      ADAM WHITE, long-time anarchist and music aficionado, alerted me to Anna & Elizabeth – and I’m so pleased that he did. These two, superb, 25-year-old folk-singers, Elizabeth LaPrelle, from Virginia, and New Englander, Anna Roberts-Gevalt, have carved out an enviable reputation… ...
    1 day ago
  • Music Will Save The World: Anna & Elizabeth
      ADAM WHITE, long-time anarchist and music aficionado, alerted me to Anna & Elizabeth – and I’m so pleased that he did. These two, superb, 25-year-old folk-singers, Elizabeth LaPrelle, from Virginia, and New Englander, Anna Roberts-Gevalt, have carved out an enviable reputation… ...
    1 day ago
  • A bad deal
    For the past seven years the government has been negotiating the Trans-Pacific Partnership. All along they've told us that this would be the road to economic nirvana, that the negotiations would deliver a "high quality" free trade agreement which would… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 day ago
  • A bad deal
    For the past seven years the government has been negotiating the Trans-Pacific Partnership. All along they've told us that this would be the road to economic nirvana, that the negotiations would deliver a "high quality" free trade agreement which would… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 day ago
  • A bad deal
    For the past seven years the government has been negotiating the Trans-Pacific Partnership. All along they've told us that this would be the road to economic nirvana, that the negotiations would deliver a "high quality" free trade agreement which would… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 day ago
  • Navel Gazing with Toni Street – a lesson in trust.
    They should rename this cross: Navel Gazing with Toni Street A diet requires a variety of food groups.  Yet whenever healthy eating is discussed in the context of legislating for better food sources in our supermarkets, or a new study… ...
    Politically CorrectedBy sleepdepriveddiva
    1 day ago
  • The Impotence Of Purity
    "Certainly, The Impotent Are Pure": Gough Whitlam struggled to make the left of his party understand that purity at the expense of power is a poor bargain. “It is true that some parties can exist only as pressure groups… ...
    1 day ago
  • Target Tokyo – Docs Show NSA Targets Japan Over Trade Deal
    Press Release – Wikileaks Today, Friday 31 July 2015, 9am CEST, WikiLeaks publishes “Target Tokyo”, 35 Top Secret NSA targets in Japan including the Japanese cabinet and Japanese companies such as Mitsubishi, together with intercepts relating to US-Japan relations, trade… ...
    Its our futureBy ScoopBlogPush
    1 day ago
  • K-pop’s loyal New Zealand fanbase
    Ahead of the Wellington K-Pop World Festival competition we talk to some of the stand out contestants.   K-pop is music at its pop-iest with ultra polished dance sequences, catchy melodies, and elaborate outfits. While it may be some… ...
    1 day ago
  • Hard News: Friday Music: Not just consumers, but patrons too
    Lydia Jenkin's New Zealand Herald feature on the paltry earnings of New Zealand musical artists in the age of streaming services is a story you should read if you care about having music made here. To say it's sobering is an… ...
    2 days ago
  • Ban junk food marketing to kids
    One in three Kiwi kids are overweight or obese. They face a life where they are 3-10 times more likely to be obese, and this weight will be harder for them to shift than it is for others. Long term,… ...
    Gareth’s WorldBy Geoff Simmons
    2 days ago
  • Tauranga Eastern Link complete
    Yesterday the Prime Minister John Key and Minister of Transport Simon Bridges officially opened just the second Roads of National Significance to be completed – the $455 million Tauranga Eastern Link. All up the project is 21km long from Te Maunga… ...
    2 days ago
  • Secrecy of TPPA documents heads to court
    Press Release – Association of Salaried Medical Specialists A legal challenge to the secrecy of the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA) negotiations will be launched in the High Court next week.31 July 2015 Secrecy of TPPA documents heads to court A… ...
    Its our futureBy ScoopBlogPush
    2 days ago
  • Guild interested to learn more about TPPA details
    Press Release – Pharmacy Guild The Pharmacy Guild of New Zealand (the Guild) is keen to learn more about how the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA) will impact New Zealands health sector if it is accepted by the Government.Guild interested to… ...
    Its our futureBy ScoopBlogPush
    2 days ago
  • Secrecy of TPPA documents heads to court
    Press Release – Professor Jane Kelsey Secrecy of TPPA documents heads to court A legal challenge to the secrecy of the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA) negotiations will be launched in the High Court next week. An urgent application for… ...
    Its our futureBy ScoopBlogPush
    2 days ago
  • Achieving Patient-Centred Care Or Floccinaucinihipilfication
    Press Release – ASMS Thank you for the opportunity to address you again. As always my comments are personal observations, although in broad terms at least I believe they are consistent with the Associations view on the matters discussed. In… ...
    Its our futureBy ScoopBlogPush
    2 days ago
  • A Free Trade Deal must include Free Trade
    Press Release – Federated Farmers Federated Farmers says the Government must hold firm on a deal for agriculture at the Trans Pacific Partnership talks in Hawaii.31 July 2015 A Free Trade Deal must include Free Trade Federated Farmers says the… ...
    Its our futureBy ScoopBlogPush
    2 days ago
  • Will poor TPP dairy outcome stop National selling our homes?
    Press Release – New Zealand Labour Party After failing to protect the right to stop foreign speculators buying our houses its clear the Government is not going to get wins on dairy in their TPP negotiations either, Labours Trade and… ...
    Its our futureBy ScoopBlogPush
    2 days ago
  • More Farmland Falling into Foreign Hands
    Press Release – New Zealand First Party More Farmland Falling into Foreign Hands, Despite English Saying Only Kiwi Farmers Can Make a ProfitMore Farmland Falling into Foreign Hands, Despite English Saying Only Kiwi Farmers Can Make a Profit Finance… ...
    Its our futureBy ScoopBlogPush
    2 days ago
  • Government Tilts the Playing Fields
    The most shocking example of Government bias can be seen when comparing the treatment of the Problem Gambling Foundation and Relationships Aotearoa with how they bail out failing private and Charter Schools.Wanganui Collegiate is an elite Private School of around… ...
    2 days ago
  • Gordon Campbell on Tim Groser missing in action on the TPP
    While rapid change is always possible in trade talks as they approach the deadline, lets assume that the offers on the table for dairy at the TPP talks in Maui won’t improve much beyond the “appallingly bad” level currently being… ...
    2 days ago

  • Stalled TPP chance for wider discussion
    Failure to get the TPP agreement across the line gives New Zealanders an opportunity to put more pressure on the Government not to sign away our sovereignty, Opposition leader Andrew Little says.“New Zealand land, dairy and medicines are up for… ...
    4 hours ago
  • Will poor TPP dairy outcome stop National selling out our homes?
    After failing to protect the right to stop foreign speculators buying our houses it’s clear the Government is not going to get wins on dairy in their TPP negotiations either, Labour’s Trade and Export spokesperson David Parker says. “Labour has… ...
    1 day ago
  • Feeling aspirational
    Yesterday the Rich List showed the number of people who have over 50 million of wealth had increased by another 15 people since last year. Collectively this group are now worth 55 billion, an increase of over 7% since last… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie MP
    1 day ago
  • Feeling aspirational
    Yesterday the Rich List showed the number of people who have over 50 million of wealth had increased by another 15 people since last year. Collectively this group are now worth 55 billion, an increase of over 7% since last… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie MP
    1 day ago
  • Feeling aspirational
    Yesterday the Rich List showed the number of people who have over 50 million of wealth had increased by another 15 people since last year. Collectively this group are now worth 55 billion, an increase of over 7% since last… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie MP
    1 day ago
  • Bennett’s legacy a test for Tolley
    Former Social Development Minister Paula Bennett has been thrown under the bus by her successor after its been suggested that Ms Bennett gave the green light to an ‘unethical’ observational study of high-risk children, Labour Children’s spokesperson Jacinda Ardern says.… ...
    1 day ago
  • Submission to Greater Christchurch Earthquake Recovery: Transition to Rege...
    Thank you for the opportunity to contribute to the Draft Transition Recovery Plan on behalf of the New Zealand Labour Party.  It is important that the citizens of Canterbury have a voice in the governance of the next step of… ...
    2 days ago
  • Troubled school wanted $25,000 dollars to fence farm
    The troubled Whangaruru charter school asked Hekia Parata for $25,000 to fence the school farm at the expense of spending on teaching, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “This unbelievable revelation comes hard on the heels of Hekia Parata’s decision to… ...
    2 days ago
  • Troubled school wanted $25,000 dollars to fence farm
    The troubled Whangaruru charter school asked Hekia Parata for $25,000 to fence the school farm at the expense of spending on teaching, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “This unbelievable revelation comes hard on the heels of Hekia Parata’s decision to… ...
    2 days ago
  • Government report on sexual & family violence a good first step
    Yesterday the Government released the cabinet paper on progress on the work programme of the Ministerial Group on Family Violence and Sexual Violence. Along with the Human Rights Commissioner and Women’s Refuge, I really welcome the report. I’m relieved that… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie MP
    2 days ago
  • Government report on sexual & family violence a good first step
    Yesterday the Government released the cabinet paper on progress on the work programme of the Ministerial Group on Family Violence and Sexual Violence. Along with the Human Rights Commissioner and Women’s Refuge, I really welcome the report. I’m relieved that… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie MP
    2 days ago
  • Prisoner voting disqualification and the Bill of Rights Act
    In 2010, National rammed the Electoral (Disqualification of Sentenced Prisoners) Amendment Bill through Parliament. Paul Quinn’s Member’s Bill existed because Paul Quinn thought anyone who’d been imprisoned was a serious offender, and serious offenders had ‘forfeited’ their right to vote.… ...
    GreensBy David Clendon MP
    2 days ago
  • Mainfreight ‘appalled’ by Government’s rail madness
    The Government has been given a serve by New Zealand-based international trucking and logistics firm Mainfreight which says it lacks a national transport strategy, and has treated rail badly, Labour's Transport spokesperson Phil Twyford says. The company has told shareholders it… ...
    3 days ago
  • National’s Health and Safety Reform Bill: less safety and fewer rights at...
    The New Zealand Council of Trade Unions is embarking on a campaign to fight the changes that weaken the Health and Safety Reform bill. As part of the campaign the CTU has organised vigils with the display of 291 crosses… ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche MP
    3 days ago
  • All options need to be put on meat sector table
    Farmers must be given every assurance that all potential risks have been considered before Silver Fern Farms opens its door to foreign equity, Labour’s Primary Industries spokesperson Damien O’Connor says. “The ongoing saga involving the meat sector and amalgamation has… ...
    3 days ago
  • Flag the referendum if 50% or more don’t vote
    Labour has moved to have the second flag referendum canned if the first attracts fewer than half the eligible number of voters, Opposition Leader Andrew Little says. “John Key has already wasted more than $8 million on his vanity project… ...
    3 days ago
  • 90,000 cars reclassified in botched ACC ratings
    New figures obtained by Labour show the ACC Minister’s botched motor vehicle levy system has resulted in 90,000 vehicles having to be reclassified so far – at a cost of $6 million, Labour’s ACC spokesperson Sue Moroney says. “Nikki Kaye’s… ...
    3 days ago
  • Brutal health cuts confirmed, crucial services suffer
    Chronic under-funding by National has seen the health budget slashed by $1.7 billion in just five years, Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King says. A report by Infometrics, commissioned by Labour, shows health funding has been cut in four of the… ...
    4 days ago
  • Meth ring under Serco’s nose
    The news that two Serco inmates have been arrested for helping to run a methamphetamine ring from prison should be the final straw and see their contract cancelled, says Labour’s Corrections Spokesperson Kelvin Davis. “National has stood by Serco despite… ...
    4 days ago
  • Ministers failing women and their own targets
    New figures showing just five Ministers have met the Government’s own reduced targets for appointing women to state sector boards is evidence National is failing Kiwi women, Labour’s Women’s Affairs spokesperson Sue Moroney says. “The Ministry for Women’s 2015 Gender… ...
    4 days ago
  • Charges up for some as funding up for grabs
    A proposal being considered by the Government would see some people having to pay more for health care and district health boards forced to fight amongst themselves to fund regional health services, Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King says “Information leaked… ...
    5 days ago
  • Stop experimenting on kids
    The trouble with the Charter school model is that it is a publicly funded experiment on children. The National Government has consistently put its desire to open charter schools ahead of the safety of the children in them, ignoring repeated… ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty MP
    5 days ago
  • Bank puts the squeeze on mid Canterbury farmers
    News that an unnamed bank in Ashburton has put a receiver on notice over financially vulnerable farmers will send a chill through rural New Zealand, says Labour’s Finance Spokesperson Grant Robertson. “The Government needs to work with  New Zealand’s banks… ...
    5 days ago
  • Key is trading away New Zealand land and homes
    John Key yesterday admitted what National dishonestly refused to confirm in Parliament last week – he is trading away New Zealand’s right to control who buys our homes and land, says Opposition leader Andrew Little. “The Prime Minister must now… ...
    5 days ago
  • Razor gang takes scalpel to health
    Plans by the Government to take a scalpel to democratically elected health boards are deceitful and underhand, coming just months after an election during which they were never signalled, Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King says “Leaked documents reveals a radical… ...
    5 days ago
  • Spin lines show a department in chaos
    Corrections Spin Doctors sending their place holder lines to journalists instead of responding to serious allegations shows the scale of chaos at the department over the Serco scandal, says Labour’s Corrections Spokesperson Kelvin Davis. “As more and more serious allegations… ...
    1 week ago
  • Court ruling shows law should never have been passed
    A High Court ruling that a law banning prisoners from voting is inconsistent with a properly functioning democracy should be a wake-up call for the Government, Labour’s Justice spokesperson Jacinda Ardern says. In an unprecedented ruling Justice Paul Heath has… ...
    1 week ago
  • Judicial Review Gamble Pays Off for Problem Gambling Foundation
    Congratulations are due to the Problem Gambling Foundation (PGFNZ) who have won their legal case around how the Ministry of Health decided to award their contracts for problem gambling services to another service provider. Congratulations are due not just for… ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche MP
    1 week ago
  • Environmental Protection Agency appoints GE advocate as new CEO
    This week, the Environmental Protection Authority Amendment Bill passed its first reading in Parliament. The Bill puts protection of the environment into the core purpose of the Environmental Protection Authority. This month, Dr Allan Freeth, the former Chief Executive of… ...
    GreensBy Steffan Browning MP
    1 week ago
  • Charanpreet Dhaliwal death demands genuine health and safety reform
    The killing of a security guard on his first night on the job is exactly the kind of incident that National’s watered-down health and safety bill won’t prevent, says Te Atatu MP Phil Twyford. The coronial inquest into 22-year-old Charanpreet… ...
    1 week ago
  • Arbitrary sanctions hit children hardest
    Increasing numbers of single parents are being penalised under a regime that is overly focussed on sanctions rather than getting more people into work, Labour’s Social Development spokesperson Carmel Sepuloni says. “Figures, obtained through Parliamentary questions show 3000 more sanctions,… ...
    1 week ago
  • Hekia just won’t face the facts
    Hekia Parata’s decision to keep troubled Whangaruru Charter school open despite being presented with a catalogue of failure defies belief, goes against official advice and breaks a Government promise to close these schools if they were failing, says Labour’s Education… ...
    1 week ago
  • No more silent witnesses
    Yesterday I attended the launch of a new initiative developed by and for Asian, Middle eastern and African youth to support young people to name and get support if there is domestic violence at home. The impact on children of… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie MP
    1 week ago
  • Single Use Plastic Bags campaign – Some wins and some green-washing
    As we near the end of Plastic Free July I’m nearing the conclusion of my Say No To Plastic Bag tour when I will have completed all 30 of my public meetings. The campaign was designed to work with community… ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche MP
    1 week ago
  • Single Use Plastic Bags campaign – Some wins and some green-washing
    As we near the end of Plastic Free July I’m nearing the conclusion of my Say No To Plastic Bag tour when I will have completed all 30 of my public meetings. The campaign was designed to work with community… ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche MP
    1 week ago
  • Minister must take responsibility for problem gambling debacle
    The Government’s handling of the Problem Gambling Foundation’s axing in a cost-cutting exercise has been ham-fisted and harmful to some of the most vulnerable people in society, Associate Health Labour spokesperson David Clark says.“Today’s court ruling overturning the axing of… ...
    1 week ago
  • Labour will not support TPP if it undermines NZ sovereignty
    The Labour Party will not support the Trans Pacific Partnership Agreement unless key protections for New Zealanders are met, Opposition leader Andrew Little says.“Labour supports free trade. However, we will not support a TPP agreement that undermines New Zealand’s sovereignty. ...
    1 week ago
  • Coleman can’t ignore latest warnings
    Resident doctors have advised that a severe staffing shortage at North Shore Hospital is putting patients’ lives at risk, Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King says. “They say a mismatch between staffing levels and patient workloads at North Shore has… ...
    1 week ago
  • ACC must remove barriers to appeals
    The Government must prioritise removing barriers to justice for ACC claimants following a damning report by Acclaim Otago, Labour’s ACC spokesperson Sue Moroney says. “ACC Minister Nikki Kaye must urgently scrap her flawed plan to remove claimant’s right to redress… ...
    1 week ago
  • Six months’ paid parental leave back on the agenda
    Six months’ paid parental leave is back on the agenda and a step closer to reality for Kiwi parents after Labour’s new Member’s Bill was pulled from today’s ballot, the Bill’s sponsor and Labour MP Sue Moroney says. “My Bill… ...
    1 week ago
  • Sole parents at risk of having no income
    New requirements for sole parents to undertake a reapplication process after a year is likely to mean a large number will face benefit cancellations, but not because they have obtained work, Labour’s Social Development spokesperson Carmel Sepuloni says. “Increasing numbers… ...
    1 week ago
  • Juking the Welfare Stats Again
    Last week the government’s major initiative to combat child poverty (a paltry $25 increase) was exposed for what it is, a lie. The Government, through the Budget this year, claims to be engaging in the child poverty debate, but instead,… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie MP
    1 week ago
  • OCR rate cut a result of flagging economy
    The Reserve Bank's decision to cut the Official Cash Rate to 3 per cent shows there is no encore for the so-called 'rock star' economy, says Labour's Finance Spokesperson Grant Robertson.   "Today's interest rate cut comes off the back… ...
    1 week ago
  • Reboot to an innovation economy, an Internet economy and a clean economy
    In my short 33 years on this planet we’ve seen phenomenal technological, economic and social change, and it’s realistic to expect the next 33 will see even more, even faster change. You can see it in the non-descript warehouse near… ...
    GreensBy Gareth Hughes MP
    1 week ago
  • Bill that puts the environment into the EPA passes first hurdle
    A Bill that puts the environment squarely into legislation governing the Environmental Protection Authority passed its first reading today, says Meka Whaitiri.  “I introduced this member’s bill as the current law doesn’t actually make protecting the environment a goal of… ...
    1 week ago
  • Key’s KiwiSaver deception exposed
    KiwiSaver statistics released today expose John Key's claim that the cutting of the kickstart payment "will not make a blind bit of difference to the number of people who join KiwiSaver” to be duplicitous, says Labour Finance Spokesperson Grant Robertson.  “Official… ...
    1 week ago
  • Minimum Wage Amendment Bill to protect contractors
    All New Zealanders should be treated fairly at work. Currently, the law allows non-employment relationships to be used to get around the minimum wage. This is unfair, says Labour MP David Parker. “The Minimum Wage (Contractor Remuneration) Amendment Bill, a… ...
    1 week ago
  • Bill raises bar to protect Kiwi farmland
    The Government’s rubber-stamping of every one of the nearly 400 applications from overseas investors to buy New Zealand farm land over the last three years proves tougher laws are needed, Labour MP Phil Goff says. “In the last term of… ...
    1 week ago
  • Costly flag referendum should be dumped
    John Key must ditch the flag referendum before any more taxpayer money is wasted, Opposition Leader Andrew Little says. “Millions of dollars could be saved if the Prime Minister called a halt to this hugely expensive, and highly unpopular, vanity… ...
    1 week ago
  • Nats letting Serco off scot free
    Government members have prevented Parliament’s Law and Order select committee from getting answers out of a senior Serco director about the fight clubs being run at Mt Eden prisons, says Labour’s Corrections Spokesperson Kelvin Davis. “At today’s Law and Order… ...
    1 week ago

Public service advertisements by The Standard

Current CO2 level in the atmosphere