Banks joins the spenders’ club

Written By: - Date published: 9:57 am, June 29th, 2010 - 41 comments
Categories: accountability, auckland supercity, john banks, len brown, local body elections, supercity - Tags: ,

I have very mixed feelings about all this scrutiny of the spending of public figures. On the one hand it is clear that abuses of the system exist – major ones like the outlandish cases that were happening in the UK, or Bill English’s Double Dipton housing rort. These need to be dragged into the sunlight. But on the other hand, where does the process end? When does it become panty sniffing, or a tool of political mudslinging? The hounding of Len Brown certainly has the latter feel about it.

Well, for the record, now Mr Banks can join the club of those who have broken the rules. And his sanctimonious claims about spending turn out to have been wrong too. Bernard Orsman reports:

‘I completely forgot about any of that’ – Banks

Auckland City Mayor John Banks has admitted claiming $438.80 in entertainment costs after issuing a Super City mayoral campaign bulletin saying he had “never charged a sandwich, lunch or coffee to the ratepayers of Auckland”.

And he broke council rules when office staff sought reimbursement for the entertainment against a bill for private use of his cellphone instead of making an expenses claim.

Last night, Mr Banks said it was a genuine mistake to say he had never charged anything to ratepayers outside work in the Town Hall, and he would run a correction in his next online campaign bulletin.

No doubt we will now see a full spectrum Herald campaign against Banks driving him into an emotional apology, and snarky concern troll editorials questioning his suitability to lead. Any moment now…

41 comments on “Banks joins the spenders’ club ”

  1. Bored 1

    How wholly unholy!!!! Could not have happened to a nicer guy!

  2. Lindsey 2

    Maybe now the MSM will be interested in the $50,000 I understand it cost to provide garaging in the Town Hall for Bank’s Bentley. The open air Mayoral carpark space outside the Grey’s Ave building was good enough for every other Mayor but not good enough for Banks.

    • Lanthanide 2.1

      Now that truly is much more of a scandal than anything anyone else has recently been pilloried for doing with their expenses.

  3. Anne 3

    Will there be a hounding of Banks on the grounds he “mis-spent our money”? No.
    Will he be dragged before his council and ordered to explain himself? No.
    Will he be forced to apologise to the rate-payers of Auckland for his transgressions? No.
    Will his future as a politician – read super city council mayoral candidate – be irrevocably tarnished? No.

    Will he be forgiven by media (and rate-payers) because he never knew it was wrong? Yes.

    • Margaret 3.1

      Anne you are wrong, Banks will not be hauled over the coals because he is a National Party man.

      He is the one who has been chosen to push the privatisation of Auckland ahead for the National Party.

      Len Brown is a lefty so he needs destroying, got out of the way for Banks to have a clear run.

  4. Bright Red 4

    The Right has been running the line that if Brown can’t run his credit card he can’t run the super-city, well what do they say to Banks’ “‘I completely forgot about any of that”?

    • Draco T Bastard 4.1

      Probably something like: Oh, good, that means he’ll forget about all this other oversight stuff that stops us making a profit at the ratepayers expense as well.

  5. Mako 5

    And right on cue, D Farrar and C Slater jump to His Lordship’s defence. Slater, who let’s not forget, has plastered his blog with Brown smears (heh) for the past three weeks, says Banks “made a bit of an oops”. Farrar describes it as “embarrassing”, but then notes that it’s “refreshing to see the names of the people entertained”. So this will be their theme for the coming week(s): “Looney Len” must reveal the identities of the people he took to dinner. This will be the line that’s relentlessly pushed, perhaps even sloganised; this is how they will try to keep this story alive. As for Banks’ failing memory, not a word more will be said.

  6. BLiP 6

    I had to have a cynical chuckle to myself at the weekend. I got dragged along to the Panmure “King of the Mountain” fun-run where, having never ever attended previously, who was all over the scene glad-handing and working the crowd – none other than John Banks!

    Normally, you’d have to drag Banksy kicking and screaming anywhere south of the Ellerslie border but there he was pressing the flesh and generally making a nuisance of himself. I was wondering why the usual Southside dignitaries were not in obvious attendance – turns out the event has been handed over to Athletics Marketing and Management – a company owned by one Dick Quax.

    • ghostwhowalksnz 6.1

      When has ‘southside’ been up to Panmure.?
      Its Auckland City.

      The real south starts after Otahuhu but often includes it.

      • BLiP 6.1.1

        Otahuhu is Auckland City as well – in my hood, Panmure is the gateway to Southside. I’m talking about South Auckland, I think you might be confusing Southside with Manukau. You’ll be correct when the SuperShitty comes into force, of course.

      • BLiP 6.1.2

        I’m talking about South Auckland, I think you might be confusing Southside with Manukau. You’ll be correct when the SuperShitty comes into force, of course.

        Ooops – you’re right. I’ve been corrected by my neighbour’s son, a regular “g in da hood”. Serves me right for trying to be hip, or is that cool, or maybe sick, or bad . . . oh, I dunno.

  7. MikeG 7

    I think that the more important paragraphs in Orsman’s piese are:

    “Figures also show that Mr Banks, who has made a virtue of being frugal with ratepayers’ money, has exceeded the mayoral office budget of $570,865 by $41,606 over the past year.

    The biggest problem has been temporary staff costs, which jumped from the budget of $10,000 to $88,372, and catering charges, which have gone from $26,006 to $36,691.

    Mr Banks’ weekly breakfast meeting with 25 senior staff and councillors costs $235.50, regular fruit bowls cost $20 and morning teas and working lunches generally cost less than $100.”

    So it’s quite ok for banks to have a “working lunch” paid for by the ratepayers, but if Len Brown does, then somwhow it’s inappropriate. And catering charges are over-budget by $10,000 but that’s not significant?

    • Bright Red 7.1

      on the wireless yesterday, Banks was saying ‘yeah but I spend nearly all my salary on my media person, which means the council doesn’t have to pay for them’ the reporter pointed out this media person is really his campaign media person.

    • Herodotus 7.2

      Why should Mr Banks be pillared for some poor budgeting by a minor council officer who does not understand the payback benefit or necessity of such spending.
      re the hireed hand spin dr- Banks I take it is paid as a PAYE worker thus gets taxed at the appropiate rate. He pays for his side arm personnally or from another entity (coy?) If it was from another coy how then can this accrue any income/benefit so should not be a deductable expense. Why does not someone investiage the mechanisms that (Sir) John Banks uses. Just like Capone use the taxman to achieve what you canot do otherwise 😆

      • MikeG 7.2.1

        “Why should Mr Banks be pillared for some poor budgeting by a minor council officer who does not understand the payback benefit or necessity of such spending.”
        I’m not quite sure what your point is here. Banks supporters have been saying about Brown – ‘if he can’t control his credit card spending, how will he control the finances of the Super City’. My point is that with significant budget over-runs in the Auckland Mayoral office, the same thing could be said about Banks.

        • Herodotus 7.2.1.1

          Humour is lost on the masses !!
          But myfollow up comment was on the basis that there maybe some irregularities in his book keeping. The IRD is a very powerful and under utilised tool, as on the surface to me I hope Sir John B is not claiming his hired gun as a means to deduct some expenses and get an indirect govt subsidy of 30% (Coy tax rate).

  8. Andrew 8

    The spending seems to be for the following:

    “The $438.80 claim covers four occasions – entertaining the United States Ambassador at Euro Restaurant on the waterfront for $215.50, catching up with arts patron James Wallace at Frasers cafe in Mt Eden ($23.80), discussing the Peter Blake memorial with businessman John Street at the Stamford Plaza Hotel ($44) and having lunch with Britomart developer Peter Cooper at the Northern Club ($155.50)”

    Can’t see how any of those are not legitimate expenses. At least he owned up to who he was entertaining i guess.

    • ghostwhowalksnz 8.1

      Legitimate expense taking a High Court judge to a box at the tennis?

      This is too outragaeous- for Banks AND for the judge

      The tennis is not a legit place to take anybody when its on the Council tab !
      A meal might be OK , invite someone to a Council function OK but a junket at something that is unrelated to Council business

      And what the heck is a judge availing himself of corporate style hospitality. ( During work hours ?)

      I think we have another case for the Judicial conduct commission

  9. American Gardener 9

    John Banks expenses seem a lot more legitimate than the unexplained $810.

    • Bright Red 9.1

      you mean the charity dinner that the council CEO signed off on?

      • Max Walker 9.1.1

        @Bright Red – I think this is the same dinner that Brown said he would never disclose who he took.

    • ghostwhowalksnz 9.2

      Thats only on the personal card .

      What else has been spent as his ‘office expenses’ of over $0.5m .

      Staff costs may be most of it , But lets see ALL the little details since Banks memory seems to be faulty and we mean invoices not line items in the accounts

  10. ianmac 10

    And he broke council rules when office staff sought reimbursement for the entertainment against a bill for private use of his cellphone instead of making an expenses claim.
    Since when is it right or legal to lay off the cost of one item as a credit on another? Accountants please explain.

    • Herodotus 10.1

      It would be advisable to claim both sides, as there maybe some entertainment tax issues and the inability to claim GST on these related entertainment expenses. Sir John has also been very fortunate that both amounts are the same netting off to a nil balance. But then public entity accounting maybe different to the private sector, as I have never heard of a tax/GST audit being conducted on a concil, as I am sure from experience that many councils may have tax and or GST issues regarding timing of income and future expenditure

      • Bored 10.1.1

        Whats this “Sir” crap? Something dusted off from ancient history? Nasty title for a nasty man.

        • Herodotus 10.1.1.1

          Like Judges, any long serving mayor receives this title (that is the real price for the successful winner to this local election) as recognition for their valued work towards the community, and as Sir John has given so freely to many deserving communities and time in parliament I thought that this site would be a great test for acceptance of such a honor!!!!! :mrgreen:

          • Mac1 10.1.1.1.1

            Hoo, boy, Herodotus. You of all historians should know about the dangers of hubris! 🙂

            “Herodotus believed that the universe is ruled by Fate and Chance, and that nothing is stable in human affairs. Moral choice is still important, however, since arrogance (Hubris) brings down upon itself the retribution of the gods (Nemesis).” ref. Age-of-the-Sage.com

  11. Looking forward to an OIA on John Banks Personal Assistant.
    Said assistant has a council credit card so i would suggest a slight of hand on John Banks’ part.
    Question. Why does the assistant need a council card?

    • Craig Glen Eden 11.1

      So what we now know is John Banks is a hypocrite with a poor memory and when he does not have his own money he will use the rate payers, his personal expenses go on his assistants card and he is not fit to run a city because he cant run a credit card.

      But according to the wingnuts its all ok because they approve of who he spends Auckland rate payers money on illegally. What a disgrace !

      • Armchair Critic 11.1.1

        So what we now know is John Banks is a hypocrite with a poor memory
        We already knew that. He also forgot whether he supported the changes that lead to leaky buildings when he was a National govt. minister back in the 1990s. Still doesn’t know, apparently. Hard to believe.

  12. Irascible 12

    The difference in the minds of Banks & his ACT cronies is that he is using an accounting method to hide his misuse of the ratepayers’ money which is acceptable because he doesn’t use a credit card. Credit cards imply the user is liable to use it frivolously and irresponsibly (look at all those south aucklanders who get into trouble with credit and loan sharks!).
    Anyone using a credit card can’t be trusted. Therefore Banks can be trusted.
    Yeah Right!!

  13. tc 13

    If only he could be gagged and tied up till after the election then the Nat’s may be in with a chance as he just doesn’t live in the world we all habitate.

    Yet another classic example of the low IQ bufoon that Banks is and with the likes of Ralston in his corner there will be plenty more foot in mouth opportunities for this serial trougher on his full beehive pension on top of his substantial wealth.

    Time for fresh thinking and enthusiasm….not more of the same crap he delivered as akl mayor !

  14. rod 14

    No doubt Duncan Garner will get stuck into Banksie on this one. Could keep it going for a week or so. Can’t wait.

  15. Armchair Critic 15

    I’d like to know two things:
    First – how the hell does he manage to spend $10k a year on cellphone calls? Surely his provider can provide him with a plan that doesn’t cost $800+ a month. Or he can wait until he has access to a landline phone. I’d love to have $10k a year to spend on cellphones, but back in the real world….
    Second – why is he making private calls on his council phone? Cellphones aren’t that big, it’s easy enough to carry two around, one for work, one private one. If it is good enough for government ministers to present two credit cards at hotels to cover the separate government and personal expenses then the same standard can apply to Mr Banks and his cellphone.

  16. I dreamed a dream 16

    Really, John Banks’ Olympics dream is either sheer stupidity or a purposeful decoy to divert attention from something.

  17. deemac 17

    see today’s Herald for details of petty claims by Quax et al. How mean do you have to be to claim for travel expenses – to go to an ANZAC Day ceremony??

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    Radio NZ reports: Te Pāti Māori’s co-leader Debbie Ngarewa-Packer has accused the new government of “deliberate .. systemic genocide” over its policies to roll back the smokefree policy and the Māori Health Authority. The left love hysterical language. If you oppose racial quotas in laws, you are a racist. And now if you sack ...
    Point of OrderBy Bob Edlin
    5 days ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #48 2023
    Open access notables From this week's government/NGO section, longitudinal data is gold and Leisorowitz, Maibachi et al. continue to mine ore from the US public with Climate Change in the American Mind: Politics & Policy, Fall 2023: Drawing on a representative sample of the U.S. adult population, the authors describe how registered ...
    5 days ago
  • ELE LUDEMANN: It wasn’t just $55 million
    Ele Ludemann writes –  Winston Peters reckons media outlets were bribed by the $55 million Public Interest Journalism Fund. He is not the first to make such an accusation. Last year, the Platform outlined conditions media signed up to in return for funds from the PJIF: . . . ...
    Point of OrderBy Bob Edlin
    5 days ago
  • Weekly Roundup 1-December-2023
    Wow, it’s December already, and it’s a Friday. So here are few things that caught our attention recently. This Week in Greater Auckland On Monday Matt covered the new government’s coalition agreements and what they mean for transport. On Tuesday Matt looked at AT’s plans for fare increases ...
    Greater AucklandBy Greater Auckland
    5 days ago
  • Shane MacGowan Is Gone.
    Late 1996, The Dogs Bollix, Tamaki Makaurau.I’m at the front of the bar yelling my order to the bartender, jostling with other thirsty punters on a Friday night, keen to piss their wages up against a wall letting loose. The black stuff, long luscious pints of creamy goodness. Back down ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    5 days ago
  • The Hoon around the week to Dec 1
    Nicola Willis, Chris Bishop and other National, ACT and NZ First MPs applaud the signing of the coalition agreements, which included the reversal of anti-smoking measures while accelerating tax cuts for landlords. Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: The five things that mattered in Aotearoa’s political economy that we wrote ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    5 days ago
  • 2023 More Reading: November (+ Writing Update)
    Completed reads for November: A Modern Utopia, by H.G. Wells The Vampire (poem), by Heinrich August Ossenfelder The Corpus Hermeticum The Corpus Hermeticum is Mead’s translation. Now, this is indeed a very quiet month for reading. But there is a reason for that… You see, ...
    6 days ago
  • Forward to 2017
    The coalition party agreements are mainly about returning to 2017 when National lost power. They show commonalities but also some serious divergencies.The two coalition agreements – one National and ACT, the other National and New Zealand First – are more than policy documents. They also describe the processes of the ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    6 days ago
  • Questions a nine year old might ask the new Prime Minister
    First QuestionYou’re going to crack down on people ram-raiding dairies, because you say hard-working dairy owners shouldn’t have to worry about getting ram-raided.But once the chemist shops have pseudoephedrine in them again, they're going to get ram-raided all the time. Do chemists not work as hard as dairy owners?Second QuestionYou ...
    More than a fieldingBy David Slack
    6 days ago
  • Questions a nine year old might ask the new Prime Minister
    First QuestionYou’re going to crack down on people ram-raiding dairies, because you say hard-working dairy owners shouldn’t have to worry about getting ram-raided.But once the chemist shops have pseudoephedrine in them again, they're going to get ram-raided all the time. Do chemists not work as hard as dairy owners?Second QuestionYou ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    6 days ago
  • Finally
    Henry Kissinger is finally dead. Good fucking riddance. While Americans loved him, he was a war criminal, responsible for most of the atrocities of the final quarter of the twentieth century. Cambodia. Bangladesh. Chile. East Timor. All Kissinger. Because of these crimes, Americans revere him as a "statesman" (which says ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Government in a hurry – Luxon lists 49 priorities in 100-day plan while Peters pledges to strength...
    Buzz from the Beehive Yes, ministers in the new government are delivering speeches and releasing press statements. But the message on the government’s official website was the same as it has been for the past several days, when Point of Order went looking for news from the Beehive that had ...
    Point of OrderBy Bob Edlin
    6 days ago
  • DAVID FARRAR: Luxon is absolutely right
    David Farrar writes  –  1 News reports: Christopher Luxon says he was told by some Kiwis on the campaign trail they “didn’t know” the difference between Waka Kotahi, Te Pūkenga and Te Whatu Ora. Speaking to Breakfast, the incoming prime minister said having English first on government agencies will “make sure” ...
    Point of OrderBy poonzteam5443
    6 days ago
  • Top 10 at 10 am for Thursday, Nov 30
    There are fears that mooted changes to building consent liability could end up driving the building industry into an uninsured hole. Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: Here’s my pick of the top 10 news and analysis links elsewhere as of 10 am on Thursday, November 30, including:The new Government’s ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    6 days ago
  • Gordon Campbell on how climate change threatens cricket‘s future
    Well that didn’t last long, did it? Mere days after taking on what he called the “awesome responsibility” of being Prime Minister, M Christopher Luxon has started blaming everyone else, and complaining that he has inherited “economic vandalism on an unprecedented scale” – which is how most of us are ...
    6 days ago
  • We need to talk about Tory.
    The first I knew of the news about Tory Whanau was when a tweet came up in my feed.The sort of tweet that makes you question humanity, or at least why you bother with Twitter. Which is increasingly a cesspit of vile inhabitants who lurk spreading negativity, hate, and every ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    6 days ago
  • Dangling Transport Solutions
    Cable Cars, Gondolas, Ropeways and Aerial Trams are all names for essentially the same technology and the world’s biggest maker of them are here to sell them as an public transport solution. Stuff reports: Austrian cable car company Doppelmayr has launched its case for adding aerial cable cars to New ...
    6 days ago
  • November AMA
    Hi,It’s been awhile since I’ve done an Ask-Me-Anything on here, so today’s the day. Ask anything you like in the comments section, and I’ll be checking in today and tomorrow to answer.Leave a commentNext week I’ll be giving away a bunch of these Mister Organ blu-rays for readers in New ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    6 days ago
  • National’s early moves adding to cost of living pressure
    The cost of living grind continues, and the economic and inflation honeymoon is over before it began. Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: PM Christopher Luxon unveiled his 100 day plan yesterday with an avowed focus of reducing cost-of-living pressures, but his Government’s initial moves and promises are actually elevating ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    6 days ago
  • Backwards to the future
    Prime Minister Christopher Luxon has confirmed that it will be back to the future on planning legislation. This will be just one of a number of moves which will see the new government go backwards as it repeals and cost-cuts its way into power. They will completely repeal one ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    6 days ago
  • New initiatives in science and technology could point the way ahead for Luxon government
    As the new government settles into the Beehive, expectations are high that it can sort out some  of  the  economic issues  confronting  New Zealand. It may take time for some new  ministers to get to grips with the range of their portfolio work and responsibilities before they can launch the  changes that  ...
    Point of OrderBy tutere44
    7 days ago
  • Treaty pledge to secure funding is contentious – but is Peters being pursued by a lynch mob after ...
    TV3 political editor Jenna Lynch was among the corps of political reporters who bridled, when Deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters told them what he thinks of them (which is not much). She was unabashed about letting her audience know she had bridled. More usefully, she drew attention to something which ...
    Point of OrderBy Bob Edlin
    7 days ago
  • How long does this last?
    I have a clear memory of every election since 1969 in this plucky little nation of ours. I swear I cannot recall a single one where the question being asked repeatedly in the first week of the new government was: how long do you reckon they’ll last? And that includes all ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    7 days ago
  • National’s giveaway politics
    We already know that national plans to boost smoking rates to collect more tobacco tax so they can give huge tax-cuts to mega-landlords. But this morning that policy got even more obscene - because it turns out that the tax cut is retrospective: Residential landlords will be able to ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • CHRIS TROTTER: Who’s driving the right-wing bus?
    Who’s At The Wheel? The electorate’s message, as aggregated in the polling booths on 14 October, turned out to be a conservative political agenda stronger than anything New Zealand has seen in five decades. In 1975, Bill Rowling was run over by just one bus, with Rob Muldoon at the wheel. In 2023, ...
    Point of OrderBy poonzteam5443
    7 days ago
  • GRAHAM ADAMS:  Media knives flashing for Luxon’s government
    The fear and loathing among legacy journalists is astonishing Graham Adams writes – No one is going to die wondering how some of the nation’s most influential journalists personally view the new National-led government. It has become abundantly clear within a few days of the coalition agreements ...
    Point of OrderBy gadams1000
    1 week ago
  • Top 10 news links for Wednesday, Nov 29
    TL;DR: Here’s my pick of top 10 news links elsewhere for Wednesday November 29, including:The early return of interest deductibility for landlords could see rebates paid on previous taxes and the cost increase to $3 billion from National’s initial estimate of $2.1 billion, CTU Economist Craig Renney estimated here last ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    1 week ago
  • Smokefree Fallout and a High Profile Resignation.
    The day after being sworn in the new cabinet met yesterday, to enjoy their honeymoon phase. You remember, that period after a new government takes power where the country, and the media, are optimistic about them, because they haven’t had a chance to stuff anything about yet.Sadly the nuptials complete ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    1 week ago
  • As Cabinet revs up, building plans go on hold
    Wellington Council hoardings proclaim its preparations for population growth, but around the country councils are putting things on hold in the absence of clear funding pathways for infrastructure, and despite exploding migrant numbers. Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: Cabinet meets in earnest today to consider the new Government’s 100-day ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    1 week ago
  • National takes over infrastructure
    Though New Zealand First may have had ambitions to run the infrastructure portfolios, National would seem to have ended up firmly in control of them.  POLITIK has obtained a private memo to members of Infrastructure NZ yesterday, which shows that the peak organisation for infrastructure sees  National MPs Chris ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    1 week ago
  • At a glance – Evidence for global warming
    On February 14, 2023 we announced our Rebuttal Update Project. This included an ask for feedback about the added "At a glance" section in the updated basic rebuttal versions. This weekly blog post series highlights this new section of one of the updated basic rebuttal versions and serves as a ...
    1 week ago
  • Who’s Driving The Right-Wing Bus?
    Who’s At The Wheel? The electorate’s message, as aggregated in the polling booths on 14 October, turned out to be a conservative political agenda stronger than anything New Zealand has seen in five decades. In 1975, Bill Rowling was run over by just one bus, with Rob Muldoon at the wheel. In ...
    1 week ago

  • PISA results show urgent need to teach the basics
    With 2022 PISA results showing a decline in achievement, Education Minister Erica Stanford is confident that the Coalition Government’s 100-day plan for education will improve outcomes for Kiwi kids.  The 2022 PISA results show a significant decline in the performance of 15-year-old students in maths compared to 2018 and confirms ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    15 hours ago
  • Collins leaves for Pacific defence meeting
    Defence Minister Judith Collins today departed for New Caledonia to attend the 8th annual South Pacific Defence Ministers’ meeting (SPDMM). “This meeting is an excellent opportunity to meet face-to-face with my Pacific counterparts to discuss regional security matters and to demonstrate our ongoing commitment to the Pacific,” Judith Collins says. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Working for Families gets cost of living boost
    Putting more money in the pockets of hard-working families is a priority of this Coalition Government, starting with an increase to Working for Families, Prime Minister Christopher Luxon says. “We are starting our 100-day plan with a laser focus on bringing down the cost of living, because that is what ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Lake Onslow pumped hydro scheme scrapped
    The Government has axed the $16 billion Lake Onslow pumped hydro scheme championed by the previous government, Energy Minister Simeon Brown says. “This hugely wasteful project was pouring money down the drain at a time when we need to be reining in spending and focussing on rebuilding the economy and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • NZ welcomes further pause in fighting in Gaza
    New Zealand welcomes the further one-day extension of the pause in fighting, which will allow the delivery of more urgently-needed humanitarian aid into Gaza and the release of more hostages, Foreign Minister Winston Peters said. “The human cost of the conflict is horrific, and New Zealand wants to see the violence ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Condolences on passing of Henry Kissinger
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters today expressed on behalf of the New Zealand Government his condolences to the family of former US Secretary of State Henry Kissinger, who has passed away at the age of 100 at his home in Connecticut. “While opinions on his legacy are varied, Secretary Kissinger was ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Backing our kids to learn the basics
    Every child deserves a world-leading education, and the Coalition Government is making that a priority as part of its 100-day plan. Education Minister Erica Stanford says that will start with banning cellphone use at school and ensuring all primary students spend one hour on reading, writing, and maths each day. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • US Business Summit Speech – Regional stability through trade
    I would like to begin by echoing the Prime Minister’s thanks to the organisers of this Summit, Fran O’Sullivan and the Auckland Business Chamber.  I want to also acknowledge the many leading exporters, sector representatives, diplomats, and other leaders we have joining us in the room. In particular, I would like ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Keynote Address to the United States Business Summit, Auckland
    Good morning. Thank you, Rosemary, for your warm introduction, and to Fran and Simon for this opportunity to make some brief comments about New Zealand’s relationship with the United States.  This is also a chance to acknowledge my colleague, Minister for Trade Todd McClay, Ambassador Tom Udall, Secretary of Foreign ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • India New Zealand Business Council Speech, India as a Strategic Priority
    Good morning, tēnā koutou and namaskar. Many thanks, Michael, for your warm welcome. I would like to acknowledge the work of the India New Zealand Business Council in facilitating today’s event and for the Council’s broader work in supporting a coordinated approach for lifting New Zealand-India relations. I want to also ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Coalition Government unveils 100-day plan
    Prime Minister Christopher Luxon has laid out the Coalition Government’s plan for its first 100 days from today. “The last few years have been incredibly tough for so many New Zealanders. People have put their trust in National, ACT and NZ First to steer them towards a better, more prosperous ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • New Zealand welcomes European Parliament vote on the NZ-EU Free Trade Agreement
    A significant milestone in ratifying the NZ-EU Free Trade Agreement (FTA) was reached last night, with 524 of the 705 member European Parliament voting in favour to approve the agreement. “I’m delighted to hear of the successful vote to approve the NZ-EU FTA in the European Parliament overnight. This is ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Further humanitarian support for Gaza, the West Bank and Israel
    The Government is contributing a further $5 million to support the response to urgent humanitarian needs in Gaza, the West Bank and Israel, bringing New Zealand’s total contribution to the humanitarian response so far to $10 million. “New Zealand is deeply saddened by the loss of civilian life and the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 weeks ago

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