Commentators on the Budget

Written By: - Date published: 4:30 pm, May 22nd, 2008 - 36 comments
Categories: budget 2008 - Tags: , , ,

From John Armstrong in The Herald:

Is it enough? Michael Cullen has given it his best shot. He has been about as generous as he could be.

He and his Labour colleagues will not die wondering what might have been had the Finance minister’s tax cuts been bolder. He could not have been bolder without seriously risking pushing the Government accounts into the red.

His tax cuts – as he said – are at the limits of his comfort zone…

The clever feature of the tax cuts is that they deliver where it counts politically.

Single people on modest incomes will hardly be dancing in gratitude at the prospect of an extra $12 to $16 a week from October.

For families, however, it is a different story. Labour has again targeted more assistance to them – very deliberately.

So a two-child household earning $65,000 will get an extra $43 a week.

This is the territory where the election will be fought.

Cullen has laid down a challenge to National to do better without being profligate.

If the Budget does not give voters in the crucial $50,000 to $80,000 household income band who are leaning National’s way pause for thought, then nothing will.

From Vernon Small, “Budget proves Labour’s will to win”:

That is one brave – as in almost reckless – Budget.

And if any one doubted Labour still had the will to win the election, this should dispel it.

Delivering $22 to $55 a week in tax cuts and moving all the thresholds far beyond inflation adjustments over three years – is not even the half of it. By the time the programme is rolled out about half of all taxpayers will have at least $50 more in the hand making John Key’s ‘north of $50″aspiration less radical than it seemed.

On the way Cullen has thrown down the gauntlet to National. Everyone will get a cut on October 1 probably at least a month before they go to the polls including an extra kick for the 500,000 superannuitants  worth $48 a fortnight for a couple.

Colin James writes: “Michael Cullen usually plays golf. In today’s Budget he switched to snooker.”

Brian Fallow dubs it “the rainy day Budget”.

Michael Cullen has been as good as his word. 

When the economy was booming and the Government’s coffers overflowing he banked the surpluses and took the political heat.

Now economic growth is at a standstill, the coffers are underflowing and he has pushed the fiscal accelerator to the limits of prudence.

Colin Espiner is less satisfied with his tax cut but concedes: “Let’s give Cullen some credit. He did what he felt he could without going against everything he believes in. “

36 comments on “Commentators on the Budget ”

  1. IrishBill 1

    I was pleased to see some decent commentary. So far only Colin Espiner has run the “cheese” line “Colby budget” and none of them have picked up any of the trite lines that were predicted so accurately in spin bingo and its comments section.

  2. Aj 2

    Polically a very canny, nay, inspirational budget. Now lets see how long National can go without producing specifics.

  3. toms 3

    David Farrar is reacting like a petulent child who has been told he can’t have his big lollipop. Thats good to be a good sign.

  4. r0b 4

    IB – agreed. Bit disappointed in Colin, he’s often better than that.

  5. ak 5

    Yeah, shame to see Gingaspinner sticking out like a sore right thumb lately (he recently accused Winnie of wooing the “mentally ill” and mused on a “stench of death” around the govt) – he used to have some semblance of impartiality now and then.

    Good for the nutty Helen-hating blog comment numbers but (and probably the chance of promotion) – all he needs to do now is add porn and he’ll be right up there with whaleoil in no time.

  6. r0b 6

    Well Audrey wasn’t quite as quick of the mark, and her commentary has a rather narrow focus (what does this mean for an incoming National government), but at least she manages to avoid cheese references, so some marks there.

  7. lprent 8

    Finally had time to look at the budget – starting with what it means for me. It pays the cost of running this site, and provided that I don’t have expand it next year, then it pays for expansion in 2010 and 2011.

    Cool!

  8. Rex Widerstrom 9

    A canny and politically astute budget indeed. But one that is good for the economy?

    It was, of course, hoping for too much to think that a party running 20% behind in the polls wouldn’t follow a path, at the end of which lies a predicted increase in net core Crown debt from $1.8 billion to $13.2 billion.

  9. Lew 10

    The Honourable Dr Michael Cullen is a careful steward of the economy, but he is above all else a shrewd and long-sighted political operator. Helen Clark (whose `fingerprints’ are all over this budget, in the words of Tony Alexander) is another. More than an economic budget, therefore, this is a political budget, though I don’t expect the True Believers to agree with this. It’s a challenge to John Key and Bill English which essentially says: `I’m a good enough Minister of Finance to empty out the coffers and still be able to avoid running the country fiscally aground. Are you?’ With an added twist along the lines of `If you think you can do better, let’s see some policy.’ It’s a budget which asks National to put up or shut up, and might provide the impetus the electorate needs to begin demanding policy from John Key before they vote for him.

    Colin James, as noted, has called this the Snooker Budget because it leaves National snookered with poor choices: blag it, talk big for now and try desperately to make the numbers work in the future; or criticise the budget as simplistic, cynical and fiscally irresponsible. John Key in his response speech took the first option, undoubtedly the correct one in the short term, but I suspect we may yet see him adopt the second view, which seems to be held by DPF among others. At some time the cold light of day is going to have to be shone on those numbers, and John Key might rue his `too little too late’ response, although the `too late’ bit is manifestly true as far as the electorate is concerned.

    Either way, FY2009 becomes battle of the finance ministers: whowever holds that position is going to have to weather `if I were him’ and `I told you so’ assaults from his opposite, who will be free to talk without the responsibility of acting, as Key is now. I think Cullen has the chops to make this budget work, but if I were Bill English I’d be worried about what I’d do if I won the election, because it’s either learn to live lean (as an almost-virgin finance minister under adverse conditions) or cut spending and suffer the resulting electoral fallout.

    Option 2 would be the wise option there. Taking option 1 and accepting Cullen’s poisoned chalice genuinely will be Labour Lite behaviour. John Key is talking about `expenditure review’ already, and if there genuinely is as much profligacy in government spending as the wingnuts think there is, he might be able to get away with cutting it in ways which don’t impact on the ordinary battlers – but I’m not convinced there is. In any case he’s going to have to decide and campaign on one of these two broad courses of action *before* he does the expenditure review, which means that even if he finds little or no fat, he will have to cut something. That could prove costly, in more than one sense of the word.

    Congratulations to IrishBill for picking the `cheese’ meme. We’ll see this come up time and time again in the next few years. They gave away a block at Back Benches one night as a luxury item, so it’s already becoming part of NZ’s political landscape.

    Bring on the next lot of polls.

    L

  10. Chris S 11

    Thank you, Lew, for that measured and thought out comment.

  11. gobsmacked 12

    “Bring on the next lot of polls.”

    Taken before the budget, the latest poll tells a rather different story from the well-publicised one at the weekend. The gap is halved from 27 points to 14.

    http://www.roymorgan.com/news/polls/2008/4295/

  12. National disgrace 13

    According to John Key on Close Up, and Campbell tonight, he will keep Wellington public service levels exactly as they are (saving half a billion according to him!?)and, ah , um close an embassy in Sweden that doesn’t yet exist to fund tax cuts three times as large as Labour’s (>$50 c.f. $16). No jobs cut, no services slashed. What an financial genius he is! No wonder he’s rich. I’d mortgage my house to buy an apartment from him. He seems really smart.

  13. ak 14

    Yes, lovely Lew: but I fear Key may have miscued by not ripping in with option 2 right from the break.

    When John Campbell (rightly) labels you “slippery as a snake in wet grass” on national TV and even Sainsbury pulls no punches, it’s a sure sign that the “love me for who I am” honeymoon has done its dash.

    Slippery has “me-tooed” himself into the mother of all snookers and the game is now “show us the money”.

    His shot, black to win. Spectacular masse required from a C-grade player, clock ticking, sweaty sheen developing.

    Hope I’m wrong, but when the cue’s in the rack on this one, watch for his handlers to pull out and head back to the Races with good old “Onelaw”.

  14. Yeah – Key looked real dark on close-up and he wasn’t even pressed very hard. Christ knows how he’s going to go head to head with Helen.

  15. outofbed 16

    The Ray Morgon poll shows that the race is by no means over.
    On these figures a couple or three percentage points down and National are toast (sortof)

  16. Lew 17

    Um … well, perhaps if ALL parties get a couple or three points, from National. Even 14% is a hell of a mountain to climb. This’ll be the comeback of the century if Labour is re-elected.

    I wonder what odds the TAB has?

    L

  17. Pascal's bookie 18

    Lew, at the risk of being branded with the frankly insulting True Believer tag, I’m going to disagree.

    Yes, it is a political budget. All budgets are political, especially election year budgets. This is tautology. Any budget can only be passed if you have the upper political hand. Every budget has an eye on the political landscape.

    However the budget itself is an end to which the winning of political games is a means. Not the other way around, which is how I am reading you. (Apologies if I’m reading you wrong.)

    It should be fairly clear by now that Cullen is a Keyensian. If he had of been one to put even medium term politics ahead of good economic management (as he sees it) we would have seen tax cuts long before now. Look at all the talk about “why has it taken nine years?” Because Cullen sees tax policy in Keyensian terms. Cuts come when needed to stimulate growth. Taxation rates are tools to smooth the troughs. That’s why he talks about the right’s view of ‘tax cuts being always good because tax is theft’ as being ‘religious’. He disagrees that there is anything normative about taxation rates.

    It’s not something that gets talked about a lot because Keynes aint that trendy these days, for many reasons. Mostly due to how his ideas were abused by those politicians that liked the ‘spend up large’ part while ignoring the ‘pay off debt while the times are good’ bit. So to my mind this budget is firmly in keeping with his ‘steward’ aspect, if you accept that he is a Keyensian. This applies whether or not you agree with a Keyensian framework, what matters is whether Cullen does.

    So that’s where I disagree. I think it’s a long term economic budget tweaked to have short term political benefits.

    None of this is to say that the political aspects are not important or broadly as you outline them, but those aspects are there to help push and maintain the Keyensian model that Cullen prefers.

    I agree that it puts English in a bind. But again I disagree that a policy of cutting spending would be wise. It would threaten to deepen the recession, just for starters. The political price would be significant as the spending slashed would hit hardest not just on the poorest as with Richardson. The latest from the US looks strangely stagflationist.

    I’ll also say that ‘Labour Lite’ seems to be working for them in a way that ‘Act in Drag’ doesn’t. The base is still with them, in spite of the fact that they now have taken on board pretty much everything Brash ran against. The only people upset about ‘Labour Lite’ are redbaiter and the slash and burn posse. (All 200 of them. Who cares?)

    The electoral centre has moved left in policy terms over the last few years.(overton windows?) The political pendulum has swung to National because that what pendulums do. There is a belief that Labour have had long enough and that the Nat’s deserve a turn. If National are wise they will govern accordingly. (small c conservatives remember). Richardson didn’t have to worry about MMP.

    All of this is just my view of course, which I freely admit is based around the naive and romantic idea that politicians from all parties have beliefs about what works, and play the ‘game’ in order to try and make the country better, being guided by those beliefs. IOW the politics, while fun to watch, and distracting to the journo’s, is in the end subordinate to the policy. Which is why the game gets played.

  18. Pascal's bookie 19

    Sh*t that ended up being a bit long. sorry.

  19. outofbed 21

    Lew
    Its not a 14 point gap between the right and the Left
    Run the morgan poll figures through the election seat calculator
    Its close bro

  20. Harry 22

    More from Roy Morgans

    “Helen Clark’s Government has been well behind the National Party for more than a year and the plunging Government Confidence (down 11pts to a record low 93.5) shows electors are losing confidence in Clark.”

    Not that much of a boost I reckon.

  21. Tane 23

    Harry, Gary Morgan’s analysis is a running joke. He’s based in Australia and comes out with some truly weird shit about NZ politics. Excellent pollster, crap analyst.

  22. Lew 24

    Pascal: Regarding which is the means and which the end: of course, you’re right in the general case.

    “I think it’s a long term economic budget tweaked to have short term political benefits.”

    I can see this, too, but I’m a propaganda geek, it doesn’t come naturally. It becomes a poison cup game, soon enough: is it propaganda being written as policy or is it policy being implemented as propaganda? The budget is very much being written in order to appeal to the immediate, but looks far-sighted as well – and this from a government which isn’t sure if it won’t be half as big in six months. You can see it either way: is it wise policy which they should have implemented years ago, or is it overly ambitious and they’ll be glad if the opposition has to try and implement it?

    I quite agree with your assessment of National’s overall policy of appealing to the centre, and that Labour’s political culture is the current orthodoxy. That’s part of the problem, though, and part of the reason for the backlash.

    L

  23. So, Roy Morgan confirms what everyone except the press gallery and fairfax already knew – there was no plummet in Labour support – all the parties remain in the same range they’ve been in for the last few months. National is ahead but drop 3% and they’re in trouble.

    Be interesting to see Tane’s graph. What’s also interesting is the gradual rise of NZF through the Roy Morgan polls. The Nats have been foolish in their approach to Winston and have not sucessfully taken his support base.

    captcha: ounce predicted. Nandor did have thoughts on the future of drug reform…

  24. Lyn 26

    PB – that was an excellent comment – I actually feel better informed. Thanks. And ditto Lew.

  25. mike 27

    Great tory budget thankyou MC.
    The greens must be livered for all their support they get tossed a few pink batts for the beneficiaries.
    A good start for Key to build on.

  26. Lew 28

    Pascal, re the Keynesian thing. My argument is mostly based on a recent column by Colin James (http://www.colinjames.co.nz/management/Management_column_08May.htm), who reckons that if he overplayed this one, `Cullen would be remembered less for his early careful stewardship than his later relaxing the reins.’ In a way, then, this is a double-play on English: not only does Cullen consider himself a more capable finance minister, but the fact he’s been able to set these terms of reference gives him another advantage.

    This is why I think National will come around to the line that Cullen has been irresponsible, because it’s Bill English, not John Key, who’ll have to take those reins if National wins, and this sort of caution is his mode.

    From an economic standpoint (though I’m not an economist) I personally agree with your assessment that cutting government spending in favour of a tax cut would seem likely to stimulate stagflation in the short term; but all the economists seem to be disagreeing with me. I defer to them.

    Let me also echo Lyn’s sentiments 🙂

    L

  27. Ha! Just heard the vox-pops on RNZ and everyone is whinging that the cuts are not enough. Jeez – what a surprise! This is a big cut package and National are not gonna offer much more. Maybe people will start to realise that tax-cut were never the answer and National’s shrill focus on tax is just a PR beat-up that raised expectations beyond any realistic point.

  28. Ari 30

    Lew: I’m pretty much agreed with you on everything, and this was exactly what I was expecting from this budget. Labour are shrewd political operators, and there was no doubt that given that National was essentially running on a “tax cuts” platform, and we were approaching a really bad time for the global economy, that Labour would empty the bank and make things hard for National. Whether it’s political game-playing or not ultimately doesn’t matter: It was good policy, and we kept the tax relief until it was needed, and we had that surplus there to deal with natural disasters and the like. Cullen has shown his credentials, which is part of why Key was so rabid on the news last night- he can’t be seen as not being the party that can manage the economy, because that’s his only real edge over Labour at the moment.

    Hopefully Labour will catch that it needs to make emotive arguements about who’ll do better with the economy and start coming out strong. If not, well… we’ll be seeing whether National would only last a single term, or not.

    mike: The greens haven’t been supporting the government this term, so that’s a very weird statement. The Government has, however, picked up support for a few of the Greens’ member’s bills.

  29. Lew 31

    Ari: “Whether it’s political game-playing or not ultimately doesn’t matter”

    Yes, ultimately the intent is irrelevant: what matters is how it’s perceived. If the `cynical’ line catches on it could be worse than doing nothing.

    “It was good policy, and we kept the tax relief until it was needed, and we had that surplus there to deal with natural disasters and the like.”

    The electorate disagrees with you on this one – people clearly think it was stingy, rather than prudent.

    “[Key] can’t be seen as not being the party that can manage the economy, because that’s his only real edge over Labour at the moment.”

    And this one too. `Not Helen Clark’ seems to be a pretty big edge for Key at this early stage. It won’t be enough if he’s seen as weak on economic matters, though, I think you’re right there.

    L

  30. RedLogix 32

    Quote from JK on RNZ this morning:

    Tax cuts alone do not win elections, what also matters is the vision for the future

    We will not be announcing our tax cuts until 5-6 weeks before the election. They will be larger than Labours….. that are pitifully small and are only a cynical last minute attempt just before an election.

    Take out messages:

    1. National will delay until the last possible moment to announce its actual policy, until the middle of an election campaign. This will be done to minimise any actual debate and scrutiny.

    2. If Labour’s cuts are “pitiful”, what does this imply about the size of the cuts National need to offer in order not to be so. Twice as large? Or north of that?

    3. And of course the insane dissonance… Labour’s measured cuts during the course of a routine Budget are “cynical”, while somehow National’s proposed cuts just days before an election is somehow “visionary”.

    Captcha: right tabloid

  31. RedLogix 33

    The electorate disagrees with you on this one – people clearly think it was stingy, rather than prudent.

    Mainly because that is what the pundits are telling them to think.
    Where is the analysis in the media that is telling the people how cuts “north of $50 pw” would rip the guts out of the public sector? If these Budget cuts are pitiful, then what is not be pitiful?

    If National attempt to trump Labour with cuts closer to $100 pw (and that was the expectation he was talking up when referring to the Australian Budget in the House yesterday), then where is the analysis that attempts to explain just what would happen to our hospitals and schools when something in the order of $16b, or over 25% was slashed off Govt income?

    There is none.

    And why not, you really have to ask yourself.

  32. Lew 34

    RedLogix: Right or wrong, it’s what the electorate believes, and as someone mentioned on another thread, tax is 23% higher in real terms due to inflation since 2000, so it’s not just National party spin and a compliant media.

    Why not? Because nobody cares enough to do any, is the flippant but strictly correct answer. It’s down to the government, its supporters and those concerned about the possible social impacts of a big tax cut and requisite spending to map out the dangers – but it’s very hard to do so until there’s firm policy. One can only speculate until then.

    I think we’ll see plenty of analysis once National release some policy.

    L

  33. RedLogix 35

    tax is 23% higher in real terms due to inflation since 2000, so it’s not just National party spin and a compliant media.

    In 2000 the public sector was after a decade of being run down was tettering on collapse. Such a position was not sustainable regardless of what party was in power.

    Imagine for instance is we were still spending on health at year 2000 levels. We have trouble enough retaining highly valuable medical staff as it is, so realistically, what would have happened if we had done nothing? I think we can categorically state that the system would have collapsed, with huge numbers of people being drawn off overseas.

    National’s proposed tax cuts in the order of 20-25% of real Govt income, would I suggest propel us back to our parlous Year 2000 conditions; lining up very closely with your quote above.

  34. Lew 36

    RedLogix: The point I’m trying to make is about perception, not about policy. The fact is that tax is effectively higher now than in 2008; the fact is also that investment in the public service is also significantly higher. If there’s a gap between perception and the actual impacts of policy such that one of these two facts is more accepted or given more weight than the other (and I agree with you that this is the case), it’s the government’s responsibility to bridge that gap. No amount of actual substantive policy will get a government support unless that policy is clearly communicated, and that’s been Labour’s major failing. The fact that people believe they are overtaxed in NZ in 2008 signifies that National is winning this battle for agenda control.

    L

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • Middle East, Africa deployments extended
    The Government has approved two-year extensions for four New Zealand Defence Force deployments to the Middle East and Africa, Defence Minister Judith Collins and Foreign Minister Winston Peters announced today. “These deployments are long-standing New Zealand commitments, which reflect our ongoing interest in promoting peace and stability, and making active ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 hours ago
  • Climate Change Commission Chair to retire
    The Climate Change Commission Chair, Dr Rod Carr, has confirmed his plans to retire at the end of his term later this year, Climate Change Minister Simon Watts says. “Prior to the election, Dr Carr advised me he would be retiring when his term concluded. Dr Rod Carr has led ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 hours ago
  • Inaugural Board of Integrity Sport & Recreation Commission announced
    Nine highly respected experts have been appointed to the inaugural board of the new Integrity Sport and Recreation Commission, Sport & Recreation Minister Chris Bishop says. “The Integrity Sport and Recreation Commission is a new independent Crown entity which was established under the Integrity Sport and Recreation Act last year, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    8 hours ago
  • A balanced Foreign Affairs budget
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters confirmed today that Vote Foreign Affairs in Budget 2024 will balance two crucial priorities of the Coalition Government.    While Budget 2024 reflects the constrained fiscal environment, the Government also recognises the critical role MFAT plays in keeping New Zealanders safe and prosperous.    “Consistent with ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    11 hours ago
  • New social housing places to support families into homes
    New social housing funding in Budget 2024 will ensure the Government can continue supporting more families into warm, dry homes from July 2025, Housing Ministers Chris Bishop and Tama Potaka say. “Earlier this week I was proud to announce that Budget 2024 allocates $140 million to fund 1,500 new social ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    13 hours ago
  • New Zealand’s minerals future
    Introduction Today, we are sharing a red-letter occasion. A Blackball event on hallowed ground. Today  we underscore the importance of our mineral estate. A reminder that our natural resource sector has much to offer.  Such a contribution will not come to pass without investment.  However, more than money is needed. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Government sets out vision for minerals future
    Increasing national and regional prosperity, providing the minerals needed for new technology and the clean energy transition, and doubling the value of minerals exports are the bold aims of the Government’s vision for the minerals sector. Resources Minister Shane Jones today launched a draft strategy for the minerals sector in ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Government progresses Māori wards legislation
    The coalition Government’s legislation to restore the rights of communities to determine whether to introduce Māori wards has passed its first reading in Parliament, Local Government Minister Simeon Brown says. “Divisive changes introduced by the previous government denied local communities the ability to determine whether to establish Māori wards.” The ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • First RMA amendment Bill introduced to Parliament
    The coalition Government has today introduced legislation to slash the tangle of red and green tape throttling some of New Zealand’s key sectors, including farming, mining and other primary industries. RMA Reform Minister Chris Bishop says the Government is committed to  unlocking development and investment while ensuring the environment is ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Government welcomes EPA decision
    The decision by Environmental Protection Authority (EPA) to approve the continued use of hydrogen cyanamide, known as Hi-Cane, has been welcomed by Environment Minister Penny Simmonds and Agriculture Minister Todd McClay.  “The EPA decision introduces appropriate environmental safeguards which will allow kiwifruit and other growers to use Hi-Cane responsibly,” Ms ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Speech to Employers and Manufacturers Association: Relief for today, hope for tomorrow
    Kia ora, Ngā mihi nui ki a koutou kātoa Tāmaki Herenga Waka, Tāmaki Herenga tangata Ngā mihi ki ngā mana whenua o tēnei rohe Ngāti Whātua ō Ōrākei me nga iwi kātoa kua tae mai. Mauriora. Greetings everyone. Thank you to the EMA for hosting this event. Let me acknowledge ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Government invests in 1,500 more social homes
    The coalition Government is investing in social housing for New Zealanders who are most in need of a warm dry home, Housing Minister Chris Bishop says. Budget 2024 will allocate $140 million in new funding for 1,500 new social housing places to be provided by Community Housing Providers (CHPs), not ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • $24 million boost for Gumboot Friday
    Thousands more young New Zealanders will have better access to mental health services as the Government delivers on its commitment to fund the Gumboot Friday initiative, says Deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters and Mental Health Minister Matt Doocey.  “Budget 2024 will provide $24 million over four years to contract the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Residential Tenancies Amendment Bill passes first reading
    The Coalition Government’s Residential Tenancies Amendment Bill, which will improve tenancy laws and help increase the supply of rental properties, has passed its first reading in Parliament says Housing Minister Chris Bishop. “The Bill proposes much-needed changes to the Residential Tenancies Act 1986 that will remove barriers to increasing private ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Montecassino Commemorative Address, Cassino War Cemetery
    Standing here in Cassino War Cemetery, among the graves looking up at the beautiful Abbey of Montecassino, it is hard to imagine the utter devastation left behind by the battles which ended here in May 1944. Hundreds of thousands of shells and bombs of every description left nothing but piled ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • First Reading – Repeal of Section 7AA of the Oranga Tamariki Act 1989
    I present a legislative statement on the Oranga Tamariki (Repeal of Section 7AA) Amendment Bill Mr. Speaker, I move that the Oranga Tamariki (Repeal of Section 7AA) Amendment Bill be now read a first time. I nominate the Social Services and Community Committee to consider the Bill. Thank you, Mr. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • First reading of 7AA’s repeal: progress for children
    The Bill to repeal Section 7AA of the Oranga Tamariki Act has had its first reading in Parliament today. The Bill reaffirms the Coalition Government’s commitment to the care and safety of children in care, says Minister for Children Karen Chhour.  “When I became the Minister for Children, I made ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • China Business Summit 2024
    Kia ora koutou, good morning, and zao shang hao. Thank you Fran for the opportunity to speak at the 2024 China Business Summit – it’s great to be here today. I’d also like to acknowledge: Simon Bridges - CEO of the Auckland Chamber of Commerce. His Excellency Ambassador - Wang ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Assisted depatures from New Caledonia
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters has confirmed a New Zealand Government plane will head to New Caledonia in the next hour in the first in a series of proposed flights to begin bringing New Zealanders home.    “New Zealanders in New Caledonia have faced a challenging few days - and bringing ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Assisted departures from New Caledonia
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters has confirmed a New Zealand Government plane will head to New Caledonia in the next hour in the first in a series of proposed flights to begin bringing New Zealanders home.  “New Zealanders in New Caledonia have faced a challenging few days - and bringing them ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Government to rollout roadside drug testing
    The Coalition Government will introduce legislation this year that will enable roadside drug testing as part of our commitment to improve road safety and restore law and order, Transport Minister Simeon Brown says.  “Alcohol and drugs are the number one contributing factor in fatal road crashes in New Zealand. In ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Minister responds to review of Kāinga Ora
    The Government has announced a series of immediate actions in response to the independent review of Kāinga Ora – Homes and Communities, Housing Minister Chris Bishop says. “Kāinga Ora is a large and important Crown entity, with assets of $45 billion and over $2.5 billion of expenditure each year. It ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Pseudoephedrine back on shelves
    Associate Health Minister David Seymour is pleased that Pseudoephedrine can now be purchased by the general public to protect them from winter illness, after the coalition government worked swiftly to change the law and oversaw a fast approval process by Medsafe. “Pharmacies are now putting the medicines back on their ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • New Zealand-China Business Summit
    Tēnā koutou katoa. Da jia hao.  Good morning everyone.   Prime Minister Luxon, your excellency, a great friend of New Zealand and my friend Ambassador Wang, Mayor of what he tells me is the best city in New Zealand, Wayne Brown, the highly respected Fran O’Sullivan, Champion of the Auckland business ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • New measures to protect powerlines from trees
    Energy Minister Simeon Brown has announced that the Government will make it easier for lines firms to take action to remove vegetation from obstructing local powerlines. The change will ensure greater security of electricity supply in local communities, particularly during severe weather events.  “Trees or parts of trees falling on ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Wairarapa Moana ki Pouakani win top Māori dairy farming award
    Wairarapa Moana ki Pouakani were the top winners at this year’s Ahuwhenua Trophy awards recognising the best in Māori dairy farming. Māori Development Minister Tama Potaka announced the winners and congratulated runners-up, Whakatōhea Māori Trust Board, at an awards celebration also attended by Prime Minister Christopher Luxon and Finance Minister ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • DJ Fred Again – Assurance report received
    "On the 27th of March, I sought assurances from the Chief Executive, Department of Internal Affairs, that the Department’s correct processes and policies had been followed in regards to a passport application which received media attention,” says Minister of Internal Affairs Brooke van Velden.  “I raised my concerns after being ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • District Court Judges appointed
    Attorney-General Judith Collins has announced the appointment of three new District Court Judges, to replace Judges who have recently retired. Peter James Davey of Auckland has been appointed a District Court Judge with a jury jurisdiction to be based at Whangarei. Mr Davey initially started work as a law clerk/solicitor with ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Unions should put learning ahead of ideology
    Associate Education Minister David Seymour is calling on the Post Primary Teachers’ Association (PPTA) to put ideology to the side and focus on students’ learning, in reaction to the union holding paid teacher meetings across New Zealand about charter schools.     “The PPTA is disrupting schools up and down the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Craig Stobo appointed as chair of FMA
    Commerce and Consumer Affairs Minister Andrew Bayly today announced the appointment of Craig Stobo as the new chair of the Financial Markets Authority (FMA). Mr Stobo takes over from Mark Todd, whose term expired at the end of April. Mr Stobo’s appointment is for a five-year term. “The FMA plays ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Budget 2024 invests in lifeguards and coastguard
    Surf Life Saving New Zealand and Coastguard New Zealand will continue to be able to keep people safe in, on, and around the water following a funding boost of $63.644 million over four years, Transport Minister Simeon Brown and Associate Transport Minister Matt Doocey say. “Heading to the beach for ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • New Zealand and Tuvalu reaffirm close relationship
    New Zealand and Tuvalu have reaffirmed their close relationship, Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters says.  “New Zealand is committed to working with Tuvalu on a shared vision of resilience, prosperity and security, in close concert with Australia,” says Mr Peters, who last visited Tuvalu in 2019.  “It is my pleasure ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • New Zealand calls for calm, constructive dialogue in New Caledonia
    New Zealand is gravely concerned about the situation in New Caledonia, Foreign Minister Winston Peters says.  “The escalating situation and violent protests in Nouméa are of serious concern across the Pacific Islands region,” Mr Peters says.  “The immediate priority must be for all sides to take steps to de-escalate the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • New Zealand welcomes Samoa Head of State
    Prime Minister Christopher Luxon met today with Samoa’s O le Ao o le Malo, Afioga Tuimalealiifano Vaaletoa Sualauvi II, who is making a State Visit to New Zealand. “His Highness and I reflected on our two countries’ extensive community links, with Samoan–New Zealanders contributing to all areas of our national ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Island Direct eligible for SuperGold Card funding
    Transport Minister Simeon Brown has announced that he has approved Waiheke Island ferry operator Island Direct to be eligible for SuperGold Card funding, paving the way for a commercial agreement to bring the operator into the scheme. “Island Direct started operating in November 2023, offering an additional option for people ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Further sanctions against Russia
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters today announced further sanctions on 28 individuals and 14 entities providing military and strategic support for Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.  “Russia is directly supported by its military-industrial complex in its illegal aggression against Ukraine, attacking its sovereignty and territorial integrity. New Zealand condemns all entities and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • One year on from Loafers Lodge
    A year on from the tragedy at Loafers Lodge, the Government is working hard to improve building fire safety, Building and Construction Minister Chris Penk says. “I want to share my sincere condolences with the families and friends of the victims on the anniversary of the tragic fire at Loafers ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Pre-Budget speech to Auckland Business Chamber
    Ka nui te mihi kia koutou. Kia ora and good afternoon, everyone. Thank you so much for having me here in the lead up to my Government’s first Budget. Before I get started can I acknowledge: Simon Bridges – Auckland Business Chamber CEO. Steve Jurkovich – Kiwibank CEO. Kids born ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • New Zealand and Vanuatu to deepen collaboration
    New Zealand and Vanuatu will enhance collaboration on issues of mutual interest, Foreign Minister Winston Peters says.    “It is important to return to Port Vila this week with a broad, high-level political delegation which demonstrates our deep commitment to New Zealand’s relationship with Vanuatu,” Mr Peters says.    “This ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Penk travels to Peru for trade meetings
    Minister for Land Information, Chris Penk will travel to Peru this week to represent New Zealand at a meeting of trade ministers from the Asia-Pacific region on behalf of Trade Minister Todd McClay. The annual Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Ministers Responsible for Trade meeting will be held on 17-18 May ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago

Page generated in The Standard by Wordpress at 2024-05-24T09:51:44+00:00