web analytics
The Standard

Tax cut speculation

Written By: - Date published: 2:39 pm, May 9th, 2008 - 55 comments
Categories: tax - Tags: , ,

Now that Michael Cullen has ruled out a tax-free bracket but promised that everyone will benefit from Labour’s tax-cut package, what cuts will he give?

The simplest option would be to cut the bottom tax rate, which would deliver a tax cut for everyone. As a percentage of income the tax cut would be largest for those on the lowest incomes, while the actual monetary value of the cuts would rise until the end of the first tax bracket, and then remain constant. That would satisfy Cullen’s desire to deliver more money to those on middle incomes without giving massive cuts to those on high incomes.

In the graph below the current effective tax rate at different incomes is compared to what would happen if the 19.5% rate was cut to 16.5% or 14.5%.

(data)

The 16.5% option would cost roughly $2.3 billion and give a $23 a week tax cut for people earning $38,000+. The 14.5% option would cost $3.7 billion and deliver $38 a week. On an income of $35,000 your tax would drop by 16% in the first option and 26% in the second. My money is on a cut somewhere between these two, perhaps in several steps: say a cut to 16.5% on October 1 and another two percent off by 2010. Cullen will probably include an increase in the tax bracket thresholds as well: an initial substantial rise and inflation indexing to deliver on the promise of multi-year cuts.

Some hopefully not altogether baseless speculation to ponder.

[Vernon Small raised the idea of an additional top tax rate of 45% at $150,000 like Australia has, to fund more cuts at lower incomes. This is unlikely to happen: any increase at that level would deliver relatively little revenue ($100 to $200 million) and encourage more tax dodging, so it wouldn’t allow much more cuts at a lower level. Hardly worth the effort and the political cost of not making a clean cut.]

55 comments on “Tax cut speculation”

  1. higherstandard 1

    Steve

    I’d be surprised if you weren’t very close to the money on your speculation.

    It’ll be interesting to see the publics reaction – I suspect whatever is announced the public will view it as not enough – who’d be a politician eh

  2. roger nome 2

    Excellent post steve. That looks like a lot of work.

  3. AncientGeek 3

    I’d prefer a more sustainable approach to start the process of moving the levels of tax brackets to reduce fiscal drag effects.

    Whatever way it gets done, starting in the lowest tax bracket is the best place to work in for whole of society. Doesn’t worry me whatever way it goes really – I’m in the extreme right of that graph.

  4. Billy 4

    “I’m in the extreme right of that graph.”

    You big showoff.

    Mind you, with that impressive atom thing you did on the other thread, ssounds like you deserve to be.

  5. AncientGeek 5

    That was just digging tables out of an old textbook. Fortunately I’m at home today.

    “Geochemistry” by Arthur H Brownlow Prentice-Hall 1979. It was state of the art at the time. Reading the modern stuff makes my head hurt.

    I’m more impressed by this graph of Steves. I’m reading through the data link at present – it is more interesting than what I should be working on.

  6. big bruv 6

    Higher

    Of course it will not be enough, after nine years of over taxation the public are not going to believe a word that Cullen says.

    They would also do well to remember that he has lied once over tax cuts and will definitely do it again if he has the chance.

  7. AncientGeek 7

    Steve: What would the reduction in lowest bracket tax do to the effect of low income rebates? And I don’t understand this at the treasury site:-

    Statutory tax scale from 1 April 2000

    * 19.5c per $1 on income up to $38,000
    * 33c per $1 on income between $38,000 and $60,000
    * 39c per $1 on income over $60,000

    With low-income rebate, effective rates are:

    * 15c per $1 on income up to $9,500
    * 21c per $1 on income between $9,500 and $38,000
    * 33c per $1 on income between $38,000 and $60,000
    * 39c per $1 on income over $60,000

    How can the rate of tax increase with a rebate?

    [the rebate goes to everyone for their first $9,500 and is abated over the remainder of the 19.5% bracket. So, your first $9,500 is at 15%, then the next $28,500 is at 21%, bringing a total at $38,000 of 19.5%. Between $9,500 and $38,000, the total tax you pay gradually rises from 15% to 19.5% of your income. It’s kind of confusing, try making a graph based on the above figures and you’ll see. The “interesting” thing is there are effectively four tax brackets but we only talk about three, and it would be historically more accurate to talk of four becuase there was a 21% bracket and that got replaced by the 19.5% bracket, which as you see is really 21 cents for the most part. SP]

  8. Matthew Pilott 8

    There is talk of ‘fiscal drag’ and of course the oft-mentioned fact that only a small percentage would be in the top tax bracket when it was introduced; that number is far greater now.

    Two thoughts, one is that the government’s purchases are succeptable to inflationary pressures as well. Two, fiscal drag is caused by wages increasing – but pay increases are necesary in the public sector as well.

    Therefore continuously adjusting tax thresholds for ‘fiscal drag’ would reduce the tax take of the government, its ability to purchase goods and services, and ability to give salary increases in line with inflation to public servants…

    AG – isn’t the net effect there $0 for someone on $38,000, but with a lower rate up to $9,500 (15%) and a higher rate above it (21%) people earning under $38,000 will benefit?

  9. Patrick 9

    Just at a guess AncientGreek (sorry, it’s Friday afternon, I’m not doing any sums!) – it looks as though having a 15c rate for the first $9,500 would decrease the net amount of tax you paid.

    I vaguely recall something like this when I was doing part-time work as a student, but I never really understood it and certainly don’t now…

    Impressive post Steve, thanks for that!

  10. AncientGeek 10

    MP: I’m actually more concerned with the fiscal drag at the bottom end rather than the top end.

    If you look at the slopes in the graph above you can see the change in the velocity of tax increase with income. It steps. Now consider that just wages at the rate of inflation is is steadily going to move people to move up that slope. It makes little difference to me – but it would at 33k because the base costs are similar, but the residual income after costs is less. Note these are probably the wrong terms…

    I’m just unsure of the effect of the low-income rebate. I feel like I’m either missing something, or the numbers are incorrect.

    Anyway – better stop reading this and get some work done.

  11. Billy 11

    47% of the poulation earns less than $20k. That is astounding.

  12. Santi 12

    “47% of the poulation earns less than $20k. That is astounding.”

    Another great achievement of the socialist Labour government!

    Keep the masses impoverished so they can cast a vote for the reds in the hope of more benefits, handouts, welfare, grants and WFF.

    [pathetic Santi. even more people earnt less than that under National. Higher employment, higher labour force participation, higher minimum wage, stronger unions, have all contributed to an average 15% increase in incoems after inflation since Labour took power – add to that the increase in the social wage – Kiwisaver, 20Free, Working for Families, etc. SP]

  13. Billy 13

    59% earn less than $30k and, on current polling, at least 9% of them would vote for National.

  14. higherstandard 14

    Remember that the 47% earning less than 20k includes retirees and children.

    [It doesn’t include children who don’t work but it does include retirees. It’s 47% of registered taxpayers, not all of whom pay tax in a given year. SP]

  15. Daveo 15

    It’s a pity WFF is so hard to model as it’d be good to factor that into the effective tax rates .

  16. big bruv 16

    SP

    Despite your sickening party political statement the fact remains that Santi is right.

    Labour have done nothing in REAL terms for their core supporters, the fact remains that 47% earn less than 20k, that is disgusting.

  17. Billy 17

    SP, maybe you guys are going to have to re-evaluate your oft-repeated line that National represents a narrow interest group of big business and landed gentry. If 59% of the population earns less than $30k and National is polling over 50%, either being in the landed gentry is not what it was, or National appeals to a wider range of voters than you give it credit for.

  18. Daveo 18

    Santi- here’s one example – the minimum wage is up 70% since 1999. How does that square with your claim that “Labour have done nothing in REAL terms for their core supporters”

  19. Patrick 19

    bruv, can you please remind me, what was the minimum wage 9 years ago? What is it now?

  20. mike 20

    Surely the envy tax threshold will have to move.
    It was put in place to only affect 5% of workers and now hits 12%

  21. Daveo 21

    If 59% of the population earns less than $30k and National is polling over 50%, either being in the landed gentry is not what it was, or National appeals to a wider range of voters than you give it credit for.

    The left doesn’t argue that National doesn’t appeal to wage and salary earners, we point out National’s policies won’t benefit them (which is where dogwhistling and PR come in). There’s a crucial difference there.

  22. Daveo 22

    Surely the envy tax threshold will have to move.

    There’s no envy involved, just a recognition that those on higher incomes can afford to pay a greater share.

  23. BB. This graph includes everyone who pays tax. Now, That includes retired people, kids who work a few hours a week, beneficaires, and the 30-odd% of adults of working age who are registered for tax but aren’t in the labour force. So, those people all have low earnings but are in this graph. If you wnat info on wage growth under National and Labour, go to the archives..

  24. Joker 24

    Without wishing to single out Ancient Greek I think he has unintentionally confirmed my (very) amateur profiling of the “champagne socialist”.

    By volunteering information about how much he earns for no particular reason as some kind of boast it would appear to me that no one (i.e. his parents) taught him that this is a ghastly nouveau riche thing to do.

    From this I deduce that his parents were working class old school labour supporters.

    Having no doubt worked very hard to make himself reasonably succesful for Ancient Greek at some time there must have been some allure in the economics of the right.

    However a sense of guilt from loyalty to his working class roots or the continual exposure to socialist dogma in his formative years will always cloud his judgement.

  25. mike 25

    “Therefore continuously adjusting tax thresholds for ‘fiscal drag’ would reduce the tax take of the government, its ability to purchase goods and services, and ability to give salary increases in line with inflation to public servants ”

    So in other words the private sectors real take home pay should slowly fall to keep welfare payments and public sector’s pay high.
    And you wonder why the tide is turning…

  26. The low income rebate thing is a bit hard to understand. i tried explaining it one way above, now I’ll try the other way.

    All income to $38,000 is taxed at 19.5% but you get 4.5% back on the first $9,500. After that they gradually take back that rebate from you by adding 1.5% to the 19.5%. At $38,000, the rebate is all gone but if you earn less than $38,000 (like most people) you still get some part of the rebate).

    The graph I’ve done is a little unsatisfactory because it’s based on incomes groups, and so the line jerks about a bit when in reality it’s a series of curves – at the start of every bracket the curve is relatively steep and then eases off as it starts to approach the level of that threshold – the effective rate of tax paid can never reach the bracket rate (execpt in the first bracket) because not all your income has been taxed at that bracket, hence the shape of the curve, apporaching the rate at the declerating rate, never able to touch it (think of dividing 1 by 2, then the result by 2, then the result by 2, you get closer and closer to 0 at a slower and slower rate but can’t touch it, same shape curve)

  27. Here’s that the current effective tax rates actually look like

    Tax as a percent of income graph

    like I say, couldn’t do that in combination with the population distribution. Might see if Tane, our images guru, can work something out for when the real tax cuts come.

    [lprent: corrected link so it was readable]

  28. Matthew Pilott 28

    Mike,

    1 – still sticking with the envy tax line are we? So how are your politics of greed going? Seems even National has abandoned them, rough bro. Can’t say I’m sorry…

    2 – “So in other words the private sectors real take home pay should slowly fall to keep welfare payments and public sector’s pay high.
    And you wonder why the tide is turning

    No. Drag only occurs with increase in pay. You get a pay rise and an increased proportion gets taken out in tax but your real take-home pay increases. Learn some basic maths, and try to think beyond making irrelevant inflammatory statements, they don’t add much.

  29. Matthew Pilott 29

    Joker, as an amateur profiler, what are you singling out a champagne socialist from? A 1950’s Soviet Railway worker perhaps?

    That term has no meaning, unless you think all socialists are poor, or anyone who is wealthy will automatically become conservative.

    Or are you saying that all socialists must live on collective farms and read Little Red Books?

  30. AncientGeek 30

    Joker: you name yourself well. Your simplified assumptions say more about your intellect than almost anything else you could have done.

    The reason why I gave an idea of my income is because there has been too much concentration on the upper incomes in the tax debate. The real issues for the whole of society are at the bottom income levels. A standard wingnut tactic is to denigrate on relative advantage in tax cuts.

    FYI: If you scale it in terms of income tax. Most of my extended family are usually in the mid to top brackets and have been since the depression. But we have and have had family members in just about every income bracket. It depends on what you find important. The family doesn’t do much inherited wealth transfer – we live too long. So everyone starts low. This gives an appreciation of choices to make.

    In the family, there is general agreement that what is good for all of society is good for us in the long-term.

    So we don’t get carried away by quick-fix solutions offered by the conservatives. That is something for people without a sense of history

  31. higherstandard 31

    MP

    “Or are you saying that all socialists must live on collective farms and read Little Red Books?”

    There’s no denying it would be a vote winner !

  32. AncientGeek 32

    Steve: thanks – those explanations (especially the graph) made it much clearer.

  33. Billy 33

    “Or are you saying that all socialists must live on collective farms and read Little Red Books?”

    I think that is only reasonable.

  34. rex brown 34

    “As a percentage of income the tax cut would be largest for those on the lowest incomes”

    Is that the goal? If so, why?

  35. Matthew Pilott 35

    Social Democrat Billy, remember there’s a difference!

  36. Billy 36

    So you say…

  37. Phil 37

    “[Vernon Small raised the idea of an additional top tax rate of 45% at $150,000 like Australia has, to fund more cuts at lower incomes. This is unlikely to happen: any increase at that level would deliver relatively little revenue ($100 to $200 million) and encourage more tax dodging, so it wouldn’t allow much more cuts at a lower level. Hardly worth the effort and the political cost of not making a clean cut.]”

    I think you need to be a little clearer about “tax dodging” which, when taken out of context, can be a very serious allegation to be levelled at an individual person or company.

    There is a distinct difference between “Tax Evasion” (illegal) and “Tax Avoidance” (which is transparent and legal). The type of ‘tax dodge’ that you talk about is the latter.

  38. Hillary 38

    Phil,’tax dodge’ as in rich people paying expensive accountants and lawyers to ‘minimise their tax liability’. While wage earners have almost no scope to ‘minimise their tax liability’. Fair, aye?

  39. mike 39

    “No. Drag only occurs with increase in pay. You get a pay rise and an increased proportion gets taken out in tax but your real take-home pay increases.”

    Why should pay increases be sucked up by fiscal drag?
    Will you socialists ever learn that rewarding production is the answer not penalising it.

  40. ak 40

    ah gee, so sad. A whole thread on money. Saw it coming.

    When the tories put up the most blatant election bribe I’ve ever seen in 2005 they dragged everyone down to their level. With the Press now so obviously shallow and blatantly pro-tory it could be a $30/wk versus a $45/wk election.

    Jesus. What an ignominious situation for such a proud, idealistic and world-leading country.

    Labour must continue to lead. Onya Hells and Culls – Slippery’s munificent flip-flops have delivered you an unprecedented and fully mandated platform to project us (and the world) yet further along the path of social evolution.

    Be bold. Race relations is both huge opportunity and electoral – hang on the league tests on – seeya

  41. Why should pay increases be sucked up by fiscal drag?
    Will you socialists ever learn that rewarding production is the answer not penalising it.

    ————–

    You mean profit, and generally its considered its own reward.

  42. ak 42

    (bastard! – no urgency, overhyped, overpaid pack of …. anyway, yes where were we, that’s right

    – GO! Cully and Hels, Slippery’s craven flipflops have given your progress to date an indelible seal of approval and the mandate to press on with further advances in social justice.

    Kiwis won’t be fooled again by the private-owned media. Go for it. Ignore the “New Zealand Sucks” fearmongers and Hollow Men arse-lickers: seize the advantage and pledge to raise maori life expectancy by four years within ten.

    It’s achieveable. It’s world-leading. It’s disgraceful that it hasn’t yet been seriously attempted.
    Go on Hels. Is Slippery going to say it’s an undesirable outcome? Ask him: and the Maori Party.

  43. mike 43

    “pledge to raise maori life expectancy by four years within ten.”

    More racist policy from the left. What a laugh
    Didn’t dear leader retreat on “closing the gaps” faster than “carbon neutrality”

  44. Higherstandard 44

    From a medical perspective it would be a miracle to raise the life expectancy of Maori by this amount in such a short period.

  45. big bruv 45

    ak

    Seems like “Culls and Hells” are going to suffer the same fate as your league team.

  46. Higherstandard 46

    BB

    Unlike the league team they will however fight tooth and nail.

    Don’t know what it is about our rugby and league players at the moment seems to be an acute “lack of ticker”

  47. Phil 47

    Hillary

    ” ‘tax dodge’ as in rich people paying expensive accountants and lawyers to ‘minimise their tax liability’. While wage earners have almost no scope to ‘minimise their tax liability’. Fair, aye ”

    Sure, because it’s so very expensive to set up a company in New Zealand, and it’s so very hard to complete all the documentation required to run it that you simply must spend thousands of dollars on expensive lawyers and accountants to do it.

    If someone is earning enough that it’s cheaper to set themselves up as a company and pay the company tax rate on their personal income, then good on them. That’s the beauty of progessive tax systems. If you want to offer an alternative (flat-tax anyone?) then be my guest.

  48. ak 48

    bruv: “”Culls and Hells’ are going to suffer the same fate as your league team”

    too right bruv – start off behind and convincingly win the second half in November

    HS: “miracle”: that’s what I’d always thought too – “too hard basket” – until I recently saw (by accident) a paper on improvements in cardiac intervention rates for Maori males that had come about purely from the introduction of a “check list” for specialists. You should know better than anyone that late presentation is a huge factor – something as simple as more community-based kaiawhina with a focus on primary checks could work wonders.

  49. higherstandard 49

    ak

    While I applaud your optimism you will not be able to lift Maori life expectancy by 4 years in a decade while surgery is my specialty current public health intiatives will be lucky to maintain current life expectancy in light of the increasing incidence of diabetes and cardiovascular disease.

    The major problem is poor diet and inactivity amongst this group coupled with thrifty genetics these behaviours aren’t changed in 10 years.

  50. randal 50

    I hear JOhn KEYS IS PROMISING A 10% GENERAL WAGE ORDER IF NATIONAL WINS?

  51. “There is a distinct difference between “Tax Evasion” (illegal) and “Tax Avoidance” (which is transparent and legal). The type of ‘tax dodge’ that you talk about is the latter.”

    Yeah, Phil, I’m aware of the difference between evasion and avoidance. There’s no arguing that the latter is still not a concerted effort to avoid tax, ie dodge it.

    Like Hillary says, that’s a rich man’s game.

    I disagree with your comments on the cost of opening a company in NZ – we’re rated the second easiest country in the world to do so, and it only costs, what, $400?

    Does a progressive tax system open room for tax avoidance? Sure. Does it also allow us to get the level of public services the public desires without taxing the poor into the ground? Yes. There’s no reason to throw the baby out with the bathwater by going for flat tax because of what are only minor tax avoidance issues and false economies.

    Perhaps more suitable for some future post, but most the tax avoidance uses trusts, which are taxed at 30%, to take income that would normally be taxed at 39%. I question the value of trusts fullstop but, without going that extreme, I believe there must be a way to clamp down on this gaming of the system by the wealthy for their beneift and everyone else’s lost (I wonder how many of those people on zero income in the graph are actually raking it in and using companies and trusts to avoid tax.. it’s not illegal but it should be).

  52. Billy 52

    Steve, I think you will find that trustee income is taxed at 33%.

    [right you are. I thought it was moved with the corporate rate. SP]

  53. Matthew Pilott 53

    Billy – not if it’s a PIE

  54. Santi 54

    Long live the PIEs, one good idea of this socialist government helping me to reduce my tax take and maximise the use of cash resources.

    It’s just a pity that it generates more work for accountants and tax advisers, due to its complexity.

    Lower taxes and make live simpler, I’d say.

  55. uroskin 55

    Leona Helmsley said tax is something only the little people pay.
    If you can’t afford a creative accountant, you shouldn’t be in business.

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • 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… ...
    1 day 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… ...
    2 days 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
    2 days 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
    2 days 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
    2 days 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.… ...
    2 days 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… ...
    3 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… ...
    3 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
    3 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
    3 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
    3 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… ...
    4 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
    4 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… ...
    4 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… ...
    4 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… ...
    4 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… ...
    5 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… ...
    5 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… ...
    5 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
    6 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… ...
    6 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… ...
    6 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… ...
    6 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
    2 weeks 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… ...
    2 weeks 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… ...
    2 weeks 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… ...
    2 weeks 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… ...
    2 weeks 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… ...
    2 weeks 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… ...
    2 weeks ago

Public service advertisements by The Standard

Current CO2 level in the atmosphere