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CGT Now!

Written By: - Date published: 10:45 am, June 5th, 2012 - 32 comments
Categories: capital gains, economy, housing - Tags: ,

It’s been said so often that surely everyone understands it by now. New Zealanders invest too much in property. It’s “unproductive” investment in that it doesn’t create or export anything. It’s often done on borrowed money, which drives up debt. Oh and just incidentally, it prices houses out of reach of ordinary Kiwis (never mind Mum and Dad investing in privatised assets, currently they can’t afford to stay in their own homes).

Bernard Hickey addressed part of this messy picture in his Sunday piece:

All our eggs are in the wrong basket

Finance Minister Bill English made a habit of brandishing one chart in his first few years in the job. It showed how the “good” tradeable sector, which includes productive sectors that export and compete with imports, had languished through the mid to late 2000s under Labour at the benefit of the “bad” non-tradeable sector, which includes government, financial services and real estate.

It was a useful tool to help him argue for a re-balancing of the economy. It powered the “big tax switch” of 2010 that encouraged saving by increasing GST and reduced incentives for residential property investing by changing the tax rules on property depreciation.

The theory was great. New Zealanders would save more, reducing the need for foreign capital. We would also invest less in rental property and more in “productive” assets that generated export returns or competed with imports, improving our trade surplus and our ability to pay our way in the world, which we haven’t done for a while.

Nice theory. Except it hasn’t worked. The chart was noticeable by its absence in the minister’s Budget presentation last week. Dig it out though and it shows the “tradeable” portion of the economy has kept declining since the National Government was elected in 2008 and is now back to levels last seen in 2002. …

All this is happening as the Government forecast in its Budget that New Zealand’s current account deficit will widen to 6.7 per cent of GDP in 2015/16 from a forecast 4.2 per cent of GDP this year as our demand for capital to go on spending outpaces our ability to pay for it.

How to cool the property market and thus redirect investment elsewhere? How to raise some revenue to address the current account deficit? I know, how about a Capital Gains Tax! Labour did all the hard work before the last election, and the proposal was almost universally well received by the experts. Time for the Nats to swallow their pride, and do what’s best for the country. CGT Now. Because taxing paperboys isn’t going to cut it.

32 comments on “CGT Now!”

  1. Jono 1

    While a large proportion thereof, Auckland and Christchurch are not the New Zealand property market. We have just sold our place, for $40k less than we bought our starter home for in late 2006 and the real estate market in our provincial city is still the worst it has been in 25 years. We have been waiting to spend money on building a new house for two years while we tried to sell! Improving employment prospects in the regions and incentivising people to get out of Auckland and establish themselves (cheaply!) in other centres would take some of the wind out of Auckland’s sales.

  2. tc 2

    The NACT have their heads in the sand regarding a CGT and alot of other issues they refuse to address as the Hollowman script doesn’t contain those items.

    Put the emotional rehetoric to one side and ask yourself if it’s fair that people can plan for and make an untaxable gain off property deliberately as a hedge against our pathetic superannuation regime.

    Gains are a result of a healthy market so to not clip the ticket for the infrastructure strain, obvious speculative behaviour etc is bonkers.

  3. Bill 3

    Granted, a CGT would raise tax revenue. But what else would it do? If banks would overwhelmingly rather lend money for property purchases than for business development due to risk factors – which I think is how it is – then how would a CGT dampen the housing market?

    Even with a CGT in place, someone looking to borrow/invest for business purposes would still be as likely to be turned down as today. And so would invest in property because that’s the banks’ preferred option.

    And if more and more people are ‘under water’, isn’t that more to do with needing a household income (ie <104 pay cheques but >52 pay cheques) to service a mortgage as against needing a single income (ie <52 pay cheques) and all the vulnerabilities that come with that scenario? I.e. you or your partner become unemployed for whatever reason then, unlike when only one income could service a mortgage and a certain amount of leeway was afforded, these days that results in an unservicable mortgage.

    • Zorr 3.1

      ummm… you misunderstand the term “under water” when used in relation to home loans means that the mortgage is worth more than the value of the home. It has nothing to do with earning potential – you could be John Key and still have an under water home loan…

      • Bill 3.1.1

        Yup. My bad. I obviously meant to mean the growing number of people being unable make their mortage repayments… as highlighted by the linked article.

  4. BillODrees 4

    The Kiwi Guide to paying bugger all tax: 
    1.Own a business, ideally with a good retail component.
    2.Siphon off cash and keep in safe or one of the “tax-paid” saving products from, say, UDC Finance.  
    3.Charge as many of your family’s expenses to the business.
    4.Buy a house that needs a significant do-up.
    5.Engage Builder and buy materials with the dodgy cash.
    6.Sell shiny lovely house.
    7.Pocket the profit, tax free, and all legit.
    Repeat every two years.

    Variation on the theme: use siphoned cash to deal in works of Art; combine your passion with dodging tax. 

    • vto 4.1

      Not quite “7.Pocket the profit, tax free, and all legit.”

      Far from legit.

      2. siphon off cash. If you mean without declaring it then that is illegal and effectively theft.
      3. Charge family expenses to the business. Also illegal.
      7. Pocket the profit tax-free. Also illegal if the doer-upper was bought for the purpose of selling for gain.

      All of the above have been done by EVERY single person I have ever known who has partaken in any of the above. Virtually all New Zealanders are tax cheats and thieves.

      As for the topic…

      1. Housing is not an unproductive sector. If that is so then the entire global economy is unproductive as nothing is exported from earth to, say, mars. Think about it.

      2. A CGT will have virtually no bearing on the occurence of future booms and busts in the property market.

      3. A CGT is good in that it spreads the tax-take across more of those earning money and not just the salary and wage earner.

    • just saying 4.2

      Step 3.5 Liaise with other business owners so that you all may write-up non-tax-deductible personal expenditure as business expenses for each other.

  5. tsmithfield 5

    “New Zealanders invest too much in property. It’s “unproductive” investment in that it doesn’t create or export anything.”

    Not always true. My business is supported by mortgages over the 3 houses of myself and two business partners. This means we are able to employ another 8 people. I suspect there are a lot of small to medium sized businesses in NZ in a similar situation.

    • lprent 5.1

      Yeah. I have been in or advised several businesses that were started only using mortgages on property by family members. There is a particular issue with that, especially with export businesses.

      It is fine to bootstrap a local business that way because the local market is so small that you rapidly get to the point of not having into expand further. But basically local businesses do virtually nothing for anyone apart from their owners and their few local employees (usually less than 20).

      The overseas markets are so vast by comparision to NZ, that if a company has even minor success you need to expand your capital rapidly to follow up. So where do you raise capital from?

      Banks basically won’t lend on a startup’s non-provable demand. The local public stock market essentially doesn’t provide money for IPO’s unless you already have millions of dollars in revenue. There aren’t many private investors outside of peoples families because it is safer and usually more lucrative investing on the property bubble. And your mortgages on your properties won’t spread to the setup costs of the overseas distribution chain or sales offices or further development.

      You’re left with local venture capitalists using overseas money or Goliath overseas fairy godparent partner companies. So you offload most of your equity.

      Then the second or third round of capital injection happens. All the same things apply. Now you’re mostly owned by overseas investors because all of the local ones are so busy chasing largely tax free capital gains. Any local investors have been selling out their stakes to overseas investors because they’re dismayed at how much investment is required to stay in the game (and the overseas people are offering really great returns).

      At some stage through the process you get listed directly or indirectly on overseas bourses because who in the hell would try to raise capital in our peanut exchange with it’s incestuous brokers?

      Eventually the best people are taken offshore to live where ever the company makes its new home. Nett result is that we just lost another export industry based on peoples brains.

      Stick a bloody capital gains tax in damnit!

  6. How to cool the property market and thus redirect investment elsewhere?

    Has that been successful in Australia? Do they avoid property booms? What about other countries, where has a CGT keep property markets in check.

    What about Ireland, they had a far worse property boom than here – do they have a CGT? USA?

    How to raise some revenue to address the current account deficit?

    Regardless of everything else, Labour made it clear CGT revenue would have only started to kick in half a decade after being introduced. It was never intended as an immediate revenue earner.

    • Lanthanide 6.1

      I don’t think it was ever intended as the single silver bullet that would stop property booms, either. Nor was it marketed as such.

    • bbfloyd 6.2

      her we go again….. little pete, do you have any idea what fueled australia’s housing boom??

      I suspect you do, but nevertheless you misuse the facts to suit whatever waffle you deem suits what is becoming an exercise in deckchair shuffling at united future headquarters(or in the broom closet which would be room enough for party membership nowadays)…

      I’ll tell you just to be fair…. the liberal/national government introduced a $14,000 subsidy for new house owners…. actually a gift, as it didn’t need to be repaid…. if you had the house built, then another $14,000 was given to subsidise the land purchase….

      the accounting oversight was so loose as to allow people to claim their “gifts” in the name of their children, family dog, cat, goldfish, etc….

      this was a blatant election bribe at the time, and was acknowledged as such…. this didn’t stop hundreds of thousands of people taking advantage of the scheme….. it was introduced as a temporary measure, then extended for another three years just before the last term of the liberal/national government….

      this had the effect of whole suburbs springing up overnight where i was (perth)at the time… it also had the effect of pushing up property prices to over double what they had been selling for before the subsidy kicked in….

      perth now has not only a massive oversupply of houses, but a large group of people who owned houses that were massively overpriced, with huge mortgages that without the infrastructure work being carried out there(WA)would have seen an epidemic of mortgagee sales.. as it is, a lot of people became trapped with debts larger than the worth of the house they owned…

      it has ruined what was a relatively healthy, and affordable housing market in that state…. rents there have gone from less than half what you would pay in auckland, to being on a par now… driven by owners need to cover the huge debts incurred in the boom…..

      in short…. the “bubble” was caused by pork barrelling politics rather than any lack of effectiveness of the tax system there…..just as the ‘bubbles” elsewhere were created as a result of the mindless greed dictating lending policies of the capitalist worlds financial institutions….

  7. AAMC 7

    Catch with CGT is it requires Capital Gains, which are realized on the sale of your property.

    Spain has had a 50% decrease in property value, economists predicting a further 30% to go, Greece I’m sure has similar numbers. England is starting to deleverage, USA has already corrected but not hit a bottom yet, China has tumbled.

    Melborne property prices have been reported to have cooled by 2% and Sydney by 1.5%.

    It is inevitable, in light of affordability as Bill alludes, that we will very shortly see in the cities some correction similar to what Jono mentions outside of the main centers . As we have all noted many times, our news is sponsored by banks, who control property value via how much they’re prepared to lend. But that bubble can’t inflate forever as we are layed off and we’re subject to stagflation.

    I’ve recently had a realestate agent move in next door to me, he is pumping that bubble real hard, skiting that he’s selling property in Arch Hill with original bathrooms and kitchens for 900k, a Grey Lynn property recently selling for 2.6 mill. Even if you’re on 100k, that mortgage is going to prevent you from spending a cent anywhere else in the economy, it won’t last forever.

    So I wouldn’t pin your hopes on some great windfall from CGT!

  8. A CGT is just tweaking the system. Worse it embeds lies about capitalism.
    Capital Gains Tax are three words the validate capitalism.
    Capital is theft since it originates in the surplus value of workers appropriated by their employers. Profits and Shares are derivatives of Capital that also validate private profit.
    Applied to land it is a ‘rent’ tax, as rent is part of the value deducted from wages and surplus value deducted from capital and paid to landlords for the use of land.
    ‘Gains’, legitimates the idea of gain from rent, when rent is the product of ownership of a scarce commodity, land. Thus most rent results from the unearned increment, the so-called ‘value’ of land created by the demand for land by those who do not own land. That is why ideally capitalists like to bypass landlords and own land as their own means of production. 
    Rent is a hangover from feudalism though kept alive as source of speculation in countries like NZ that heavily depend on extensive land-based commodity production. Thus ‘gains’ based on ownership and speculation in land should be rejected and replaced with a word like ‘theft’ as in Proudhon’s “property is theft”, rent rorts, or if you have an historical bent, ‘unearned increment’.
    ‘Tax’, is also an insidious term implying that the income or source of income taxed originates legitimately as private property. This results in bullshit spew such as Bob Jones, NZs No 1 property ‘thief’, moaning about the right not to pay tax in today’s NZH. 
    Hence those who propose a CGT should be rename it a ‘social fund’ understood as the re-appropriation of all socially derived value from the private ownership of property. 
    That, or at least the understanding of what it entails, would be a small step towards the burial of capitalism.

  9. her 9

    CGT is always going to be a hard sell in a farming country and this policy alone will probably get National a third term.

    What would Helen have done?

  10. As a property investor I would be really concerned if a “blanket”CGT was introduced.
    Not for myself because I just won’t sell my properties. No sale, no CGT tax revenue.
    Bit of a bummer then for first time buyers given the supply of properties will shrink and price good homes even further out of reach.

    • vto 10.1

      The supply of properties will not shrink. Why will it? Because some people don’t want to realise their gain and pay tax on it? Don’t think so. Most house sales follow human demographic trends i.e. move on average every 7 years. That won’t change.

      Sounds to me like you are exactly the type of person the CGT is aimed at – those who buy with a view to sell later at a higher price. And that means you are obliged to pay income tax on it today. Hope you have declared all past gains otherwise you will be a tax cheat.

      • I have never bought with a view to sell later at a higher price, actooally. No need to assume I’m a tax cheat. I don’t sell property I just buy it,rent it out and pay tax on the profits. Like any normal business. How else you gonna get me now, assuming that you’ve decided I’m an arsehole and want to apply the appropriate arsehole tax?

        • vto 10.1.1.1

          Calm down. I didn’t assume. It was implied in your original post as you said it won’t affect you because you wont sell your properties (anymore because of the CGT). Implied / assumed was the (anymore etc).

          How will they get you now? After you draw your final breath and the properties get transferred to the next owner the taxman will taketh. Not as much as if the properties had been transferred several times before your last breath though. Actually, that’s not right. If the property gets transferred say 4 times at 50k gain each time it will net about the same as one transfer at 200k. So not selling makes no difference in the end, to the taxmanwoman.

          One trick is to simply out-live the taxman…

          And if all tax cheats are arseholes then I aint met a single New Zealander yet who isn’t an arsehole.

          • Monique Watson 10.1.1.1.1

            That’s residential property and I guess profits/wealth for you. Can’t milk it, can’t fuck it and take it with you. 🙂
            much calmer now thanks.

  11. quartz 11

    Increase tenants rights too. Minimum standards for rental housing to ensure warm dry and energy efficient stock would increase demand by pushing a lot of shoddy do-up stock onto the market but add stronger tenant-occupier rights (such as they have in Europe) to the equation and you’ll reduce the demand too. Watch that price-point drop.

    As a tenant considering buying I’ve got to say there’s nothing worse than feeling like you’re being squeezed between having no rights in your rental and the prospect of paying hundreds of thousands of dollars in interest to an Australian bank for a mortgage.

  12. tsmithfield 12

    I would be happy to support a capital gains tax only if capital losses can be claimed as an expense.
    If I am to be taxed on a capital gain, then why shouldn’t I be able to claim on a capital loss? It only seems fair to me.

    • Lanthanide 12.1

      Which is exactly what Labour proposed.

      • tsmithfield 12.1.1

        I am not sure about that. I thought they wanted to weasel out of letting people claim for losses.

    • Uturn 12.2

      See dave browns comment at #8. You’d be claiming compensation for the stuff you couldn’t steal. Which now I think about it is not all that unusual. So what the hell, steal what you can, claim back what you can’t steal, take everything you see, hear and imagine. Oh yeah, and then complain that other people aren’t making you rich enough or refusing to emulate or validate your theft. That’s the best part.

    • felix 12.3

      “If I am to be taxed on a capital gain, then why shouldn’t I be able to claim on a capital loss? It only seems fair to me.”

      Presumably you’d also argue for all workers – whether salary or contract – to be able to claim for expenses.

    • mike e 12.4

      Tsm Thats why labour were going to tax at 15% instead of the company tax rate which would possibly leave the govt worse off.

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    Housing Prices

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  • France’s anti-Zionism is anti-liberté
    by Daphna Whitmore Last week France passed a law that equates anti-Zionism with anti-Semitism. It is based on a definition of anti-Semitism that includes criticism of Israel such as: “Denying the Jewish people their right to self-determination, e.g., by claiming that the existence of a State of Israel is a racist ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    6 days ago
  • Another bus lockout
    Over the past year we've seen major bus problems in Hamilton and Wellington, as drivers have sought better wages and an end to the bullshit of split shifts, which basicly see them "married to the job". And now its Auckland's turn. When NZBus's drivers planned low-level strike action of not ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Climate Change: Showing us how its done
    The government has been congratulating itself over the passage of the Zero Carbon Act, which sets out long-term emissions targets. But those targets are insufficient. Meanwhile, Denmark is showing us how its done:Denmark’s parliament adopted a new climate law on Friday, committing to reach 70% below its 1990 emissions in ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • New Fisk
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Public sector dysfunction should not be allowed to undermine freedom of information
    Another day, another piece of legislation with a secrecy clause. This time its the innocuous-seeming Mental Health and Wellbeing Commission Bill, which (after establishing a new body and making it subject to the OIA in three different ways) includes the rapidly-becoming-standard clauses enabling it to request information from other public ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • “This is England, this knife of Sheffield steel…”
    The state of the United Kingdom is fractured, torn up, shredded. The Empire is gone, it died a long time ago. And yet, the country is still tracking with a lead in favour of the ones who play to the ingrained, class-bound division for political gain. It is a disgrace ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    1 week ago
  • CORSIA, coming soon to an airport near you
    On 27 September, Greta Thunberg addressed a crowd of 500,000 at the School Strike for Climate in Montreal, saying: “You are a nation that is allegedly a climate leader. And Sweden is also a nation that is allegedly a climate leader. And in both cases, it means absolutely nothing. Because ...
    SciBlogsBy Robert McLachlan
    1 week ago
  • Cloaking hate speech and fake news in the right to free expression.
    It should be obvious by now but let’s be clear: The same folk who regularly traffic in disinformation, misinformation and “fake news” are also those who most strongly claim that their freedom of expression rights are being violated when moves are made to curb hate speech (as opposed to protected ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    1 week ago
  • The Physics (and Economics, and Politics) of Wheelchairs on Planes
    Michael Schulson When Shane Burcaw flies on an airplane, he brings along a customized gel cushion, a car seat, and about 10 pieces of memory foam. The whole arsenal costs around $1,000, but for Burcaw it’s a necessity. The 27-year-old author and speaker — who, alongside his fiancée, Hannah ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • To Advance Civil Rights, Oppose Transgender Extremism
    We are very pleased to publish this submission is from Lucinda Stoan. She is a social justice activist, mother, and educator, based in Washington State in the  US.   This detailed and comprehensive source-linked overview of trans issues and what is at stake will be useful for many people, especially in ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Faafoi should be fired
    Newshub last night reported that Broadcasting Minister Kris Faafoi had apparently promised to help out a mate with an immigration issue. While its normal for people to approach MPs for assistance in this area, when you're a Minister, the rules are different: as the Cabinet Manual says, Ministers must "at ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Adrian Orr – The Reserve Bank’s Revolutionary Governor?
    New Zealand's Underarm Banker: It bears recalling that the “independence” of the Reserve Bank Governor was for decades held up by neoliberal capitalists as the most compelling justification for passing the Reserve Bank Act. Interesting, is it not, how the ruling class’s support for the Bank’s independence lasted no longer than ...
    1 week ago
  • Driving Us Up The Poll.
    Rubbish In, Rubbish Out: Put all this together, and it’s difficult to avoid the conclusion that anyone who responds positively to a pollster’s request to “answer a few questions” is just ever-so-slightly weird. Desperately lonely? Some sort of psephological train-spotter? Political party member primed to skew the poll for or against ...
    1 week ago
  • Jordan Williams, Colin Craig podcast series announced
    “Free at last, Free at last, Thank God almighty we are free at last.” ― Martin Luther King Jr. A long and bitter court feud between former Conservative Party leader Colin Craig and Jordan Williams has been settled, with an apology and compensation from Williams. On Tuesday, Craig sent out ...
    The PaepaeBy Peter Aranyi
    1 week ago
  • How plant-based meat is stretching New Zealand’s cultural and legal boundaries
    Samuel Becher, Victoria University of Wellington and Jessica C Lai, Victoria University of Wellington Earlier this year, the New Zealand-based pizza chain Hell Pizza offered a limited-edition “Burger Pizza”. Its customers weren’t told that the “meat” was plant-based. Some customers complained to the Commerce Commission, which enforces consumer law in ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • Scientific integrity requires critical investigation – not blind acceptance
    Some people seem to want to close down any critical discussion of the current research into the relationship between water fluoride and child IQ. They appear to argue that claims made by researchers should not be open to critical review and that the claims be accepted without proper consideration ...
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: The shameful reality
    The government has been congratulating itself over the passage of the Zero Carbon Act, which sets out long-term emissions targets. Meanwhile, Climate Action Tracker has the shameful reality: those targets are insufficient:While New Zealand is showing leadership by having passed the world’s second-ever Zero Carbon Act in November 2019, under ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • More secrecy
    The government introduced a Racing Industry Bill today. As an urban who horse racing as pointless-to-cruel, and gambling as a tax on stupidity and/or hope, this isn't normally a bill which would interest me in the slightest, beyond grumpiness at more government money for a dying industry. But there is ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Unlikely online bully, Liam Hehir
    Check. Check. One, two, three, four. Is this thing ON? Hello readers, I logged in last night (yeah, it’s been a while) to mark THE END of the landmark legal case, Jordan Williams v Colin Craig, which (gulp) reached The Supreme Court, in which New Zealand’s most-defamed man was suing the politician he ...
    The PaepaeBy Peter Aranyi
    1 week ago
  • The Birth Of Israel: Wrong At The Right Time.
    Before The Birth: Israel’s most fervent supporters set their clocks ticking in Biblical times. They cite the kingdoms of David and Solomon as proof that, in the words of the Exodus movie’s theme-song: “This land is mine.” The majority of Israel’s backers, however, start their clocks in 1933 – the year Adolf ...
    1 week ago
  • Hard News: Public Address Word of the Year 2019: Korero phase
    In an unreliable, strange and confusing world, Public Address is proud to present a measure of comfort and stability by annually asking everyone what words or phrases sum up the year that's been – and then giving some of them consumer goods as prizes for being clever or simply lucky.Well, ...
    1 week ago
  • Generalist to specialist
    Both my parents are pretty handy – and they seem to have the right tools for most jobs in the garage and they know how to fix practically anything. A similar story could be told about their generation’s experience in the workforce – being a generalist was not unusual and ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • A “coincidence”
    When it was revealed that NZ First had tried to enrich itself from public office via the Provoncial Growth Fund, the Prime Minister assured us that everything was OK as Shane Jones, the Minister responsible for the fund, had recused himself. Except it seems that that recusal came very late ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Member’s Day
    Today is a Member's Day, and probably the last one of the year. After the marathon of the End of Life Choice Act, most of the bills up for debate today are uncontentious. First up is the second reading of Chlöe Swarbrick's Election Access Fund Bill. This will be followed ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Worse than I thought
    The Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade Committee has reported back on the government's odious and tyrannical control orders bill. As expected, the fraudulent select committee process has made no significant changes (partly because they couldn't agree, but mostly because it was a stitch-up from the start, with no intention of ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • The cannabis bill and the referendum
    Yesterday, the government released its draft Cannabis Legalisation and Control Bill, which will be put to a non-binding referendum at the next election. I'm not a drug policy expert, but Russell Brown is, and he thinks its pretty good. And pretty obviously, it will be a massive improvement on the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Hard News: The Cannabis Legalisation and Control Bill: pretty good so far
    As you're probably aware, the draft bill outlining the proposed legal cannabis regime to be put to a referendum late next year was published yesterday, and has already attracted a flurry of comment. It's notable that a good deal of the comment is about proposals that aren't actually new.A minimum ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Climate Change: Alignment
    One of the big problems in New Zealand climate change policy is the government working at cross-purposes with itself. It wants to reduce fossil fuel use, but encourages oil and gas exploration. It wants to reduce transport emissions, but then builds enormous new roads. The problem could be avoided if ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • How climate change will affect food production and security
    Climate Explained is a collaboration between The Conversation, Stuff and the New Zealand Science Media Centre to answer your questions about climate change. If you have a question you’d like an expert to answer, please send it to climate.change@stuff.co.nz According to the United Nations, food shortages are a threat ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks ago
  • More bad faith
    Last year, the government announced it was ending offshore oil exploration by no longer issuing new permits. The idea was that the industry would then die off as permits expired. Except almost immediately the government revealed its bad faith, by saying they would extend permits and alter conditions to keep ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Banning foreign money from our elections
    The government has said it will ban foreign donations to political parties and candidates, and will be introducing legislation to be passed under all-stages urgency this afternoon. While I agree with the goal, I don't see a particular case for urgency, unless the government is concerned about a flood of ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Reforming the Education Acts
    The government introduced the Education and Training Bill to Parliament yesterday. Its a massive bill, which replaces both existing Education Acts, as well as various other bits of legislation (including some which are still proceeding through the House). I'll leave the serious analysis to teachers and people who actually know ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Bite-sized learning
    Amelia SharmanThere’s no one-size-fits-all when it comes to micro-credentials, those bits of bite-sized learning that can help workers stay on top of technological change.  What’s a micro-credential? While definitions vary, micro-credentials can be understood as short courses that allow people to learn new skills or have an existing competency recognised. ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks ago
  • “Not The Labour Party We Once Knew.”
    All Smiles Now: Claire Szabo is taking up her presidential role after serving as the CEO of Habitat For Humanity. Which is absolutely perfect! After KiwiBuild was so comprehensively mismanaged by Phil Twyford, the party has not only elected a new president from a thoroughly respectable not-for-profit, but one who ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Marxist versus liberal methodology on transgender ideology/identity politics
    While much of the NZ left has transitioned to postmodern and identity politics in relation to transgender ideology, there are some very good articles about that deploy Marxist methodology in relation to this subject.  The one below is from the British marxist group Counterfire and appeared on their site here ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Book review: The Farm by Joanne Ramos
    by Daphna Whitmore At Golden Oaks, a luxurious country retreat in the Hudson Valley, pregnant women have the best care money can buy. From the organic food, personalised exercise programmes, private yoga instruction and daily massages Golden Oaks looks like a country lodge for the upper class. Set some time ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    2 weeks ago
  • Loosening the purse strings
    When Labour was running for election in 2017, it felt it needed to demonstrate "fiscal responsibility" and signed itself up to masochistic "budget responsibility rules". It was a fool's errand: the sorts of voters who demand fiscal responsibility are also the sorts of voters who believe that labour can never ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Climate Change: How to get there
    Writing in Stuff, Joel MacManus looks at what we need to do to meet the Zero Carbon Act's targets. The core of it:1. Convert 85 per cent of vehicles on the road to electric. 2. Eliminate fossil fuels from all industrial heating up to 300 degrees Celsius. 3. Double our ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • anti-vaxxers in a measles epidemic: so many ways to be untruthful
    “Anti-vaxers are a pro-death movement,” those comments from Dr Helen Petousis-Harris speaking about six more Measles related deaths in Samoa over the past twenty-four hours. “Anti-vaxers are a pro-death movement,” those comments from Dr Helen Petousis-Harris speaking about six more Measles related deaths in Samoa ...
    SciBlogsBy Alison Campbell
    2 weeks ago
  • Is Youth Vaping a Problem in New Zealand?
    Professors Janet Hoek and Richard Edwards, Emeritus Professor Phil Gendall, Jude Ball, Dr Judith McCool, Anaru Waa, Dr Becky Freeman Recent media reports have presented conflicting evidence on youth vaping in NZ. While some NZ school principals report concerns about increasing vaping on school grounds and confiscating vapes, ASH Year ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    2 weeks ago

  • Record export highs picked for primary sector
    Sustained high growth in primary industry exports looks set to continue over the next two years with strong prices predicted for farmers, fishers, growers and rural communities. Minister of Agriculture and Minister of State for Trade and Export Growth Damien O’Connor today released the latest Situation and Outlook report for ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 hours ago
  • New partnership to boost screen sector job opportunities
    Auckland’s growing screen sector is the catalyst for a new partnership between the Ministry of Social Development and Auckland’s economic development agency Auckland Tourism, Events and Economic Development (ATEED). The launch today at FilmFX in Henderson, is to celebrate the partnership which looks to capitalise on the social and economic development opportunities ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • A minute’s silence for Whakaari White Island victims
    A minute’s silence will be observed at 2.11pm on Monday 16 December in honour of the victims of the Whakaari White Island eruption, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has confirmed. “Wherever you are in New Zealand, or around the world, this is a moment we can stand alongside those who have ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • NZ to help fund fight against measles in the Pacific region
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters has announced New Zealand will contribute NZ$1 million of funding towards the joint United Nations Fund for Children (UNICEF) and World Health Organisation (WHO) Pacific Regional Action Plan for Measles.   “Prevention through vaccination is the most effective way of avoiding illness and a costly health emergency. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • New Zealand remembers Sir Peter Snell
    New Zealand is today remembering one of our true sporting heroes, triple Olympic gold medal winner Sir Peter Snell. “He was a legend, here and around the world,” Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said. “Our thoughts are with Sir Peter’s wife Miki and their family.” “Sir Peter is recognised as New ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • PM congratulates Boris Johnson on election victory
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has congratulated United Kingdom Prime Minister Boris Johnson on his election victory.  “New Zealand and the United Kingdom are close friends and despite our distance we are strongly connected by our history and people,” Jacinda Ardern said.  “I look forward to continuing to work with Prime ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Building a platform for the future of rail
    The Government has released its long term vision for a sustainable 21st Century rail network that gets our cities moving, connects our regions and gets more freight off the roads.   Deputy Prime Minister and State Owned Enterprises Minister Winston Peters said the Government is committed to rebuilding New Zealand’s ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Prime Minister statement Whakaari White Island recovery operation
    I want to start by acknowledging the families who have experienced such grief and such loss since the extraordinary tragedy on Monday. Today was all about reuniting them with their loved ones. We've just come from the airport where many of them were gathered and in amongst what you can ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • New Zealand medical specialists to provide further support to Samoa
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters today announced further support for Samoa’s longer term needs as it continues to respond to a devastating measles epidemic. “Samoa’s health system has experienced massive strain in the wake of the measles epidemic. The volume of patients needing care during this outbreak, and the number of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Discounted electric-bikes offered to public sector workers
    Discounted electric bikes will be offered up to public sector staff across the country as part of the Government’s work to reduce transport emissions and support healthier transport options.  Associate Minister of Transport Julie Anne Genter officially launched the new initiative at Wellington Hospital today.  “The Government has negotiated bulk-purchase ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Australia and New Zealand confirm joint bid for FIFA Women’s World Cup
    The Australian and New Zealand Governments today launch an historic joint bid to bring the FIFA Women’s World Cup to the Southern Hemisphere for the first time. Australian Minister for Youth and Sport, Richard Colbeck and New Zealand Minister for Sport and Recreation Grant Robertson will announce the bold campaign, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Blackwater gold mine gets PGF boost
    The Provincial Growth Fund (PGF) has approved a $15 million loan to help re-establish a gold mining operation at Blackwater Gold Mine, near Reefton, Rural Communities Minister and local MP Damien O’Connor announced at an event on the West Coast today. “This is great news for the Coast that could ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Papakāinga model inspires whānau well-being
    Papakāinga model inspires whānau well-being A housing project by Kohupātiki whānau in Hastings is an outstanding example of a Māori-led housing initiative that can reduce financial pressure and reconnect whānau to their whakapapa says the Minister for Māori Development Hon Nanaia Mahuta.  Minister Mahuta officially opened the Aroha Te Rangi ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Government provides more funding for major community wetland restoration project
    Restoration efforts for a significant wetland in the Hawke’s Bay are getting more support announced Associate Minister for the Environment Eugenie Sage. “Wetlands are vital to healthy landscapes and ecosystems. They function as nature’s ‘kidneys’, filtering and protecting water quality, acting as nature’s sponges after rain and are home to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Housing First to help Nelson Tasman homeless
    Nelson has today seen the launch of Housing First Nelson Tasman. Today’s launch marks the expansion of the Government’s homelessness programme, Housing First, to the top of the South Island. “Housing First is a proven programme that puts people who are experiencing homelessness and multiple, high and complex needs into ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • New funding to support Environment Centres working for sustainable local solutions
    New Government funding announced today will help communities make a difference in tackling environmental issues Associate Minister for the Environment Eugenie Sage announced in Hawkes Bay today. The Ministry for the Environment’s Community Environment Fund is dedicating $243,101 to growing the capacity and capability of the Environment Hubs Aotearoa’s (EHA) ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Government takes bite out of loan sharks
    The days of vulnerable consumers falling victim to loan sharks, truck shops and other predatory lenders are numbered, following the Credit Contracts Legislation Amendment Bill passing its third reading tonight. “Too many Kiwis are being given loans that are unaffordable and unsuitable, trapping them in debt and leaving their families ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • New Zealand safer as Terrorism Suppression (Control Orders Bill) becomes law
    A Bill that prevents terrorism and supports the de-radicalisation of New Zealanders returning from overseas has passed its third reading, Justice Minister Andrew Little says. The Terrorism Suppression (Control Orders) Bill is a carefully targeted response to manage the risk posed by a small number of New Zealanders who have ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Foreign Minister and Pacific Peoples Minister to visit Samoa
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters and Minister for Pacific Peoples Aupito William Sio will travel to Samoa on Friday, where New Zealand medical teams are helping Samoa respond to an outbreak of measles. “New Zealand has been working closely with the Government of Samoa and offering our assistance from the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • New Pastoral Care Code will support tertiary students in 2020
    The Government has changed the law to improve student safety and welfare in university halls of residence and other student accommodation. The Education (Pastoral Care) Amendment Bill passed its third reading this afternoon and details of an interim Code of Practice setting out the Government’s expectations of tertiary providers have also been released. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • New infrastructure funding tool to build housing developments faster
    A new tool to help councils fund and finance infrastructure could mean some housing developments happen a decade earlier than currently planned, Urban Development Minister Phil Twyford said today. “This new tool, developed by the Government in partnership with industry and high-growth councils, will allow councils to access private debt ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Vision to unite the primary sector launched today
    Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor has welcomed the release of a bold new vision for the country’s vital food and fibre sector. “I’m delighted that New Zealand’s major farmer and grower organisations are today supporting the Primary Sector Council’s vision – Fit for a Better World,” he said. “The international consumers ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • NZ congratulates PNG and Autonomous Bougainville Government on referendum
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters has congratulated the Government of Papua New Guinea and the Autonomous Bougainville Government for completing a well-conducted referendum on the future political status of Bougainville. “New Zealand supported the referendum process by providing technical advice through the New Zealand Electoral Commission and leading a Regional Police ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Next steps for Upper North Island logistics
    In light of Cabinet’s position that freight operations on prime land in downtown Auckland are no longer viable, the Government will now embark on a short work programme to enable decision-making in the first half of next year, Associate Transport Minister Shane Jones says. Minister Jones is today releasing the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Surgical mesh restorative justice report received
    Associate Health Minister Julie Anne Genter has received the report back from a surgical mesh restorative justice process undertaken by Victoria University. The process heard stories, either in person or online submission, from more than 600 people affected by surgical mesh. “The report made for heart-breaking and confronting reading,” says ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • The Water Services Regulator Bill – Taumata Arowai a milestone for drinking water safety
    The Water Services Regulator Bill – Taumata Arowai , introduced to Parliament today, is a milestone for drinking water safety in New Zealand and will help improve environmental outcomes for urban waterways, rivers and lakes.  “This is a breakthrough for New Zealanders in terms of providing safe drinking water throughout ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Speech to new direction for criminal justice reform announcement
    Kia ora koutouE ngā mana, e ngā reo, e ngā matā wakaTēnā koutou katoaHaere ngā, moe maiKoutou ma ngā Rangatira Ko Anaru ahauKo au te Minita mo ngā TureHe Honore tino nui kei roto I ahau No reira tena koutou katoa Today, we are releasing two reports that are the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • New direction for criminal justice reform
    The Government is looking to turn around the long-term challenges of criminal justice by taking a new approach to break the cycle of offending to ensure there are fewer victims of crime. Justice Minister Andrew Little released two reports today, Turuki! Turuki! from Te Uepū Hāpai I te Ora, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • New law sets up $300m Venture Capital Fund
    New Zealand firms expanding beyond the start-up phase are set for more support after today’s passage of the Venture Capital Fund Bill, Associate Finance Minister David Parker said. The Bill, which establishes a $300 million Venture Capital Fund, puts in place a key initiative of the Wellbeing Budget’s economic package. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • New Zealand’s National Statement to COP25
    E ngā mana, e ngā reo, e ngā iwi, e ngā rau rangatira mā. Tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou katoa. Señora Presidenta, Excellencies, Delegates. International action A common thread that runs through the Paris Agreement is the commitment we have made to each other to do what we can to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • $12 billion in extra infrastructure investment
    The Government is lifting capital investment to the highest level in more than 20 years as it takes the next step to future-proof New Zealand. Finance Minister Grant Robertson has announced $12 billion of new investment, with $8 billion for specific capital projects and $4 billion to be added to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Strong economy, careful spending gives $12bn of surpluses
    The Government is forecast to run $12 billion worth of surpluses across the four years to 2023/24 as the economy continues to grow. The surpluses will help fund day-to-day capital requirements each year. These include fixing leaky hospitals, building new classrooms to cover population growth and take pressure off class ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Priorities for 2020 Wellbeing Budget outlined
    Budget 2020 will continue the Coalition Government’s focus on tackling the long-term challenges facing New Zealand while also investing to future-proof the economy. When the Government took office in 2017 it was left with crumbling infrastructure, severe underinvestment in public services, degraded rivers and lakes, a housing crisis and rising ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Minister welcomes data-rich coastline mapping tool
    The Minister responsible for the Marine and Coastal Area (Takutai Moana) Act 2011 (te Takutai Moana Act 2011), Andrew Little has welcomed the launch of an online geospatial tool that provides data-rich, dynamic coastline maps that will significantly boost research and evidence-gathering under the Act. Te Kete Kōrero a Te ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Chief Victims Advisor reappointed for a further two years
    The Chief Victims Advisor to Government Dr Kim McGregor, QSO, has been reappointed in her role for a further two years. Dr McGregor has held the role since it was established in November 2015. She provides independent advice to government on how to improve the criminal justice system for victims. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • New Zealand tsunami monitoring and detection system to be established
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters and Civil Defence Minister Peeni Henare have today announced the deployment of a network of DART (Deep-ocean Assessment and Reporting of Tsunami) buoys. “New Zealand and the Pacific region are particularly vulnerable to natural disasters. It is vital we have adequate warning systems in place,” ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • DART Buoys Announcement
    DART Buoys Announcement Aotea Wharf, 9.30am 11 December 2019   Acknowledgements Acknowledgements to Minister for Civil Defence Hon Peeni Henare also here today. White Island It is with regret that this event shadows the tragic natural disaster two days ago. The volcanic eruptions on White Island have claimed 5 lives, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Final steps for racing industry reform
    Racing Minister Winston Peters has welcomed the first reading of the Racing Industry Bill in parliament today. This is the second of two Bills that have been introduced this year to revitalise New Zealand’s racing industry. “Our domestic racing industry has been in serious decline.  The Government is committed to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Funding to promote New Zealand Sign Language initiatives
    Minister for Disability Issues, Carmel Sepuloni, is pleased to announce that $291,321 is to be awarded to national and local community initiatives to maintain and promote the use of New Zealand Sign Language (NZSL). “New Zealand is one of the few countries  in the world where Sign Language is an ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • How New Zealand defines and recognises veterans
    Minister for Veterans Ron Mark has announced today the Coalition Government’s initial response to work completed by the independent statutory body, the Veterans’ Advisory Board. “When Professor Ron Paterson completed his review of the Veterans’ Support Act in 2018, he made a number of recommendations, including one which I referred ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago