Good potential, will it deliver?

Written By: - Date published: 6:04 pm, August 2nd, 2009 - 31 comments
Categories: economy, unemployment, workers' rights - Tags:

17,000 youth jobs. That’s what Key has promised with a $152 million programme (some of this is existing money). Like Colin Espiner says “ambitious plan”.

We’ll see if he manages to deliver. The record so far has been big promises and bigger failure to deliver – the money hasn’t been spent and the jobs haven’t materialised.

As we’ve been saying for a long, long time, a lot of job creation can be done that is revenue neutral. The cost of $9000 per job will be largely covered by lower dole payments and more tax revenue.

The challenge will be to make the jobs that are created useful and sustainable. There’s no use creating jobs that aren’t contributing to infrastructure or serving as training opportunities to upskill the youth workforce. There will have to be work done to ensure that these minimum-wage jobs don’t compete with workers on better wages. We don’t need a whole lot of low-skill, low-wage jobs that aren’t going to help grow the economy in the long-term and only serve to undermine the wages of other workers.

So, some pitfalls they’ll need to be careful to avoid but this has the potential to deliver some of what we’ve been pleading for from the Key Government for half a year. Let’s hope they deliver this time.

31 comments on “Good potential, will it deliver? ”

  1. Lew 1

    Lynn, I think Eddie’s account has been compromised. This post is fair!

    L

  2. DeeDub 2

    Yes, a very interesting set of ideas from Key. It got a lot of coverage at the expense of . . . .

    English is ‘refusing to count out’ a capital gains tax now I see? Oh, and proposing another tax cut for the rich to offset it but… wait for it…… an increase in GST to 15%

    Nice one, Bill. That’s fair.

    As a proportion of income who is hurt most by an increase in GST?

    I wonder?

    • Ari 2.1

      I understand treasury is pushing hard for a CGT, and frankly, it makes a lot of sense.

      Are they seriously floating raising GST?

      • RedLogix 2.1.1

        As I’ve said often before, CGT’s don’t work very well. They really only treat the symptom of an asset bubble, not the root cause which is irresponsible bank lending.

        The last big property bubble happened in every developed nation regardless of what kind of CGT regime they had in place. That fact alone tells you all you need to know.

        • Lew 2.1.1.1

          RL, that assumes the purpose of CGT is to prevent speculative property bubbles. It’s not, really. Their purpose (assuming that a family home is exempt, and that rates and such are comparable to other taxes) is to even out the tax landscape so that property isn’t hugely more attractive than any other any asset class, so any property bubbles which occur are at least due to market perceptions of the value of property, not due in any part to property’s beneficial tax status.

          L

          • RedLogix 2.1.1.1.1

            Well most people who are currently calling for a CGT are doing so in the belief that it will prevent bubbles from happening. Well they don’t.

            Besides that is exactly what you appear to be arguing anyhow:

            so any property bubbles which occur are at least due to market perceptions of the value of property, not due in any part to property’s beneficial tax status.

            Besides as I said, CGT’s don’t appear to have the desired effect in any other country, so why imagine it would work here?

            In fact the overseas experience is that they can have quite perverse effects:

            1. They create a huge incentive NEVER to sell, what happens over generations is that more and more property gets concentrated into fewer and fewer hands.

            2. They also create a huge incentive to NEVER do any improvements, beyond the bare minimum to keep the place rentable, because any money invested in improving the capital value, becomes taxable on sale.

            These effects directly combine to create slum landlording on a massive scale. (Exactly what the Nats would want of course.)

            Sorry about the threadjack..

            • Lew 2.1.1.1.1.1

              RL,

              Well most people who are currently calling for a CGT are doing so in the belief that it will prevent bubbles from happening. Well they don’t.

              Quite agree.

              Besides that is exactly what you appear to be arguing anyhow

              Not at all. I’m arguing for the status quo (or something closely resembling it) to be applied to all asset classes. Bubbles still occur in properly-taxed asset classes; they will still occur in property with a CGT, at least partially because not all the reasons for choosing property over other asset classes are wholly rational. That’s ok; that’s how markets are. All I’m arguing is that there be no additional reasons to choose property than those which already exist.

              In fact the overseas experience is that they can have quite perverse effects

              These sorts of arguments against CGT I can agree with in principle, though I’d question their magnitude and whether other things could not be done to mitigate them.

              L

            • SPC 2.1.1.1.1.2

              Red Logix

              The idea that a CGT will simply result in people not selling is spread by those arguing against a CGT. Its not a difficult problem to resolve.

              Simply apply an annual land tax on rental property and have this deductible against any CGT liability when it is sold.

              As for the idea that a CGT would ruin the property business as we know it – why it would be no higher a tax than applies on other forms of income?

              All property is improved for sale to maximise value. Property is also improved to attract tenants and improve rent income in the market. If not tenants go elsewhere and pay for better accomodation, or buy up the cheap run down properties and do them up as their homes.

              The idea that people would not seek a 70% cut of a capital gain if they were not gaining 100% is nonsense – many existing operators are already run rental property businesses and pay tax on their profits buying and selling houses. It should be an even playing field in this business and all income should be taxed.

              Of course the inflation component should not be taxed and thus the annual CPI would need to be deducted from any assessment of a capital gain (a property from 300,000 to 400,000 should not be taxed on the $100,000 value increase but this amount less the CPI factor over the years the property was held).

            • Quoth the Raven 2.1.1.1.1.3

              How about simply apply a land tax full stop and offset it by reductions in income tax, GST, sin taxes etc?

            • SPC 2.1.1.1.1.4

              QtR

              I don’t support a land tax falling on peoples homes only rental property.

            • RedLogix 2.1.1.1.1.5

              As for the idea that a CGT would ruin the property business as we know it

              Never said that. All that would happen is that the costs would ultimately be passed onto tenants, AND still not have the desired effect of preventing property bubbles.

          • Quoth the Raven 2.1.1.1.2

            SPC – It’s not alright for it to fall on people’s homes (technically it is not on people’s homes but their land), but it is alright for it to fall on people’s incomes?

            • SPC 2.1.1.1.2.1

              Red Logix

              You wrote (7.12) that landlords would not sell their property and they would not improve their property – so we have slum landlords like they do overseas.

              That’s not ruin the rental property business as we know it?

              I disagreed, I explained why these things would not happen.

              You now say the cost of a CGT would be passed onto tenants and thus for the sake of the “tenants” we should not do it.

              The CGT revenue would/could fund an increase in accomodation supplement. Thus a fairer tax regime for all and at no cost to tenants.

              QtR

              Land is taxed now via rates.

              A separate land tax in lieu of CGT (until it falls due) falling on the property business is additional to this and for a singular purpose.

    • SPC 2.2

      I personally have no problem with a higher GST rate – I prefer 20% and introducing it when there is no inflationary pressure (and yet external upward pressure on finance costs) is the ideal time to do so.

      Of course the only fair way to introduce it would be to cut GST on food to zero and cut income taxes equally for all tax payers – say by lowering tax rates up to the minimum wage to around 10% adjusting upward WFF and increasing tax paid benefits by an equivalent amount (at the same time deducting the CPI from interest before the income is taxed to increase after tax income from saving to distribute revenue to those with the capacity to save and not spend).

      The amount of tax revenue from GST has declined against other forms of revenue over the past decade (one reason is that so much of our spending has moved into an area outside the range of GST – on property).

      Another option to introduce GST on mortgages (which would allow a commensusrate fall in the OCR – lower business norrowing costs and a lower dollar beneficial to exporter income and tax receipts would result). This would be similar in effect to a surcharge on mortgages which Bollard proposed a few years ago after ideas proposed to Cullen many years before that.

      Increasing the incentive to save and not spend and taxing property via bringing it into GST and also some form of CGT. My preference is to regard ALL residential rental property as a business, taxed as a business. I would however annual land tax these properties in lieu of any CGT liability and they can deduct land taxes paid from any subsequent CGT liability (after all otherwise they would simply borrow against the unrealised profit and buy more rental properties with this money and then place them all into a Trust for the children A). Oh and some exemption for newly built property – say for a period of years afterward would help direct investment into this area and this is necessary to prevent housing shortages.

      • RedLogix 2.2.1

        My preference is to regard ALL residential rental property as a business, taxed as a business.

        Common misconception. In fact residential rental businesses are ALREADY taxed exactly the same as any other business.

        There are already quite strict rules about the distinction between an rental business and a developer/speculator. Furthermore IRD is poised to implement new and quite draconian ‘associated persons’ rules, that will close the loopholes on all the common dodges.

        In general it seems hugely underappreciated that anyone whom IRD deems to be in the business of developing/speculating WILL have company profit tax imposed on any net capital gain. In effect if you are running a business and you sell more than two properties inside a few years, or buy and sell a property within 10 years… you are already being taxed on capital gains.

        The people who are NOT being caught are individuals who buy and sell outside of any formal company structure, people with second homes and baches, etc.

        I agree however with the Land Tax idea. It has a credible intellectual history going back to the Georgists and earlier. It should however be applicable to ALL land, not just rental properties. I cannot see any way to justify penalising tenants, who will have the cost passed onto them, in a way that homeowners are not liable to.

        Oh and some exemption for newly built property . It’s what I do; I’ve built six units in seven years… I appreciate that someone understands the distinction.

        • SPC 2.2.1.1

          QtR

          That was the point I was trying to make some people are paying CGT while others in the same business are not.

          I favour a CGT on all rental property and this paid up front via an annual land tax until it is sold (and written off against any CGT liability at this point).

          We will disagree about land tax on homes and baches, though the idea of one applying at higher values is not without merit.

          I am on the side of those who build new homes – they grow the economy with their investment (in a risky business) and meet real need for new housing: unlike the real speculators who just buy up and on sell property and try and avoid CGT while doing so.

          • SPC 2.2.1.1.1

            Red Logix (unable to edit my earlier post)

            What misconception?

            That was the point I was trying to make, some people are paying CGT while others in the same business are not.

            I favour a CGT on all rental property and this paid up front via an annual land tax until it is sold (and written off against any CGT liability at this point).

            We will disagree about land tax on homes and baches, though the idea of one applying at higher values is not without merit.

            I am on the side of those who build new homes they grow the economy with their investment (in a risky business) and meet real need for new housing: unlike the real speculators who just buy up and on sell property and try and avoid CGT while doing so.

            • RedLogix 2.2.1.1.1.1

              OK. I’ve nothing especial against a CGT, but please be aware that it will likely not have the hoped for effect of preventing asset bubbles.

              Also if property prices deflate can I get a tax rebate?

              That was the point I was trying to make, some people are paying CGT while others in the same business are not.

              The problem is that the Nat govt in the 90’s deliberately directed IRD to write some very vague rules around all this. As a result billions of dollars of tax was avoided to the benefit of wealthy friends of the National Party.

              Later on as more and more people got in on the scam, Cullen had IRD tighten the rules considerably. What is not appreciated by lots of people is that capital gains are already taxable if you are deemed by IRD to be a developer/speculator.

              By contrast the majority of residential rental businesses that hold a properties long-term are not… if for no other good reason other than ultimately the costs would simply be passed onto tenants anyhow.

            • SPC 2.2.1.1.1.2

              Red Logix

              My prime hope is that because of a fairer tax system people put more of their investment money into new house building, bank deposits (reduces our foreign debt) and venture capital or new issue share capital etc.

              I have no problem with ALL landlords paying CGT (and doing so via annual land taxes deductable when they sell up). The money raised being used to increase accomodation supplements as/if their rents rise as a consequence.

              Sure there may be some periods of decline in property values and those forced to sell then (most would obviously try and avoid this) might realise losses and have them offset their other tax liabilities (just as in any business where there are lines in profit and lines making a loss).

              I am surprised that currently IRD target developers when they have the highest risk of failure and loss and do most for economic development with their investment (meet rising demand for housing). The rest of the sector should ALSO be subject to CGT and ways to favour new property found so as not to discourage housing starts which benefit the economy (perhaps exempting those landlords who buy new homes from any land tax/CGT for * number of years).

    • rave 2.3

      Its called the even playing field.
      They own the field and will even let you play after work.

  3. Ari 3

    Yeah, we’ll see. I mean, if this ends up to be painting building’s roofs white to offset climate change, that’s not exactly a great jobs program. But if there’s some really good apprenticeship stuff in there, that’d rock.

  4. Nick C 4

    “We don’t need a whole lot of low-skill, low-wage jobs that aren’t going to help grow the economy in the long-term and only serve to undermine the wages of other workers.”

    I find it absurd how you use the word ‘undermine’ here. Would you say that free trade ‘undermines’ prices of food and clothing?

    • Bill 4.1

      Putting aside speculative gambling and it’s effect.

      Depends whether the power resides more with the buyer or with the seller.

      If with the buyer, then prices fall. If with the seller, they rise.

      Food and clothing prices are skewed rather than undermined.

      There is no free trade, just layers of power differentials pushing the price of traded goods (labour and commodities) higher or lower and a whole pile of resulting knock on effects

  5. SPC 5

    It’s smart politics.

    Progressive/Labour had the idea of education or training or a job for those under 18 and then later age 20. So they cannot question this focus.

    However a number of existing programmes training young people have had cuts and one wonders whether starting new ones to be seen to be doing something is the best use of money (new programmes have start up and running costs).

    Also the full funding will only be realised if employers want to take on people and pay them the minimum wage. The subsidy for the Friday off take up rates shows there is likely to be a gap between the idea and the practical impact.

    I give some credit for them paying young people the minimum wage rate for the 30 hour programme (let’s hope there is some workskill development realised as well) – this will allow them some self respect (which was denied those on work for the dole programmes). And over the years turnover on this sort of programme will give more and more the awareness of the difference to be made working over the dole amount (it’s over $15,000 net after tax even at only 30 hours a week and well under $10,000 on the dole for those under 18) and inspire some aspiration.

    If they want some free advice – for older beneficiaries they should offer similar but more part-time work at the minimum wage. Thus these beneficiaries can top up their meagre incomes by working for extra money (this work option and an increase in the non abatement rate to $120 a week from $80 is so necessary to alleviate poverty amongst those long term on DPB, IB and SB unable to work full-time one is still staggered Labour did nothing).

  6. Mike 6

    Good plan,
    Bill needs some people to work on his house.

  7. Ed 7

    I’d be interested in a comparison between the programmes that National has cut since they were elected with these now being announced.

    My impression is that the gap between getting rid of modern apprenticeships (for example) and this announcement is so that they can claim this as new spending, and also because by delaying they are saving some costs and spreading announcements out.

    They seem to be keener on subsidising employers for unskilled jobs rather than assisting development of a skilled labour force as well – is this just encouraging cannon fodder rather than intelligent use of capital – and in the process cementing in a low wage economy?

  8. BLiP 8

    National Inc’s latest jobs plan looks like the thin end of the wedge in the privatisation of social services. Why not spend ALL the money with existing government providers? The whole thing has got corporate welfare written all over it.

    • just another student 8.1

      Business is surely going to win out of this scheme. I do wonder though, how many employers will ditch these employees as soon as they are able, in order to obtain new subsidised ones. (This was already happening for the few that were subsidised).

      I much preferred the idea of apprenticeships, allowing people to gain real training and a real marketable skill, rather than some work experience in menial tasks.

      Have got to say I find it interesting that a week ago they were saying “we are in a recession, we have to make tough decisions”, yet now they can find all this money to pay to the businesses.

  9. What? 9

    ED – Did National actually get rid of Modern Apprenticeships? I’ve seen this said before on this website but can’t see any proof it’s happened.. http://www.modern-apprenticeships.govt.nz/ the website is also live.

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    6 days ago
  • Consumer confidence collapses after Budget, in contrast with rest of world
    The first widespread survey of consumers and voters since the Budget on May 30 shows a collapse in confidence. Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: The belt-tightening and tax-cutting Budget delivered on May 30 has not delivered the boost to confidence in the economy the National-ACT-NZ First Government might have ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    6 days ago
  • The end for the Air Force 757s
    The Air Force 757 that broke down with the Prime Minister on board in Port Moresby on Sunday is considered so unreliable that it carries a substantial stock of spare parts when it travels overseas. And the plane also carries an Air Force maintenance team on board ready to make ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    6 days ago
  • At a glance – Was 1934 the hottest year on record?
    On February 14, 2023 we announced our Rebuttal Update Project. This included an ask for feedback about the added "At a glance" section in the updated basic rebuttal versions. This weekly blog post series highlights this new section of one of the updated basic rebuttal versions and serves as a ...
    7 days ago
  • It's not New Zealand they've never heard of, it's him
    Sometimes you’ll just be so dog-tired, you can only keep yourself awake with a short stab of self-inflicted pain.A quick bite of the lip, for instance.Maybe a slight bite on the tongue or a dig of the nails.But what if you’re needing something a bit more painful?The solution is as ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    7 days ago
  • Some “scrutiny” II
    Last month I blogged about the Ministry of Justice's Open Government Partnership commitment to strengthen scrutiny of Official Information Act exemption clauses in legislation", and how their existing efforts did not give much reason for confidence. As part of that, I mentioned that I had asked the Ministry for its ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • Gordon Campbell on why the Biden “peace plan” for Gaza is doomed
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    WerewolfBy lyndon
    7 days ago
  • Raised crossings: hearing the voice of vulnerable pedestrians
    This is a guest post by Vivian Naylor, who is the Barrier Free Advisor and Educator at CCS Disability Action, Northern Region, the largest disability support and advocacy organisation in Aotearoa New Zealand. She also advises on AT’s Public Transport and Capital Projects Accessibility Groups. Vivian has been advocating and ...
    Greater AucklandBy Guest Post
    1 week ago
  • Leaving on a Jet Plane
    So kiss me and smile for meTell me that you'll wait for meHold me like you'll never let me go'Cause I'm leavin' on a jet planeDon't know when I'll be back againOh babe, I hate to go“The true measure of any society can be found in how it treats its ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    1 week ago
  • Bernard's mid-winter pick 'n' mix for Tuesday, June 18
    The election promises of ‘better economic management’ are now ringing hollow, as NZ appears to be falling into a deeper recession, while other economies are turning the corner. Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: The economy and the housing market are slumping back into a deep recession this winter, contrasting ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    1 week ago
  • Scrutiny week off to rocky start
    Parliament’s new “Scrutiny” process, which is supposed to allow Select Committees to interrogate Ministers and officials in much more depth, has got off to a rocky start. Yesterday was the first day of “Scrutiny Week” which is supposed to see the Government grilled on how it spends taxpayers’ money and ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    1 week ago
  • The choice could not be more stark’: How Trump and Biden compare on climate change
    This is a re-post from Yale Climate Connections by Barbara Grady Illustration by Samantha Harrington. Photo credits: Justin Lane-Pool/Getty Images, Win McNamee/Getty Images, European Space Agency. In an empty wind-swept field in Richmond, California, next to the county landfill, a company called RavenSr has plotted out land and won ...
    1 week ago
  • Differentiating between democracy and republic
    Although NZ readers may not be that interested in the subject and in lieu of US Fathers Day missives (not celebrated in NZ), I thought I would lay out some brief thoughts on a political subject being debated in the … Continue reading ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    1 week ago
  • Bernard's mid-winter pick 'n' mix for Monday, June 17
    TL;DR: Chris Bishop talks up the use of value capture, congestion charging, PPPs, water meters, tolling and rebating GST on building materials to councils to ramp up infrastructure investment in the absence of the Government simply borrowing more to provide the capital.Meanwhile, Christopher Luxon wants to double the number of ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    1 week ago
  • You do have the power to change things
    When I was invited to come aboard and help with Greater Auckland a few months ago (thanks to Patrick!), it was suggested it might be a good idea to write some sort of autobiographical post by way of an introduction. This post isn’t quite that – although I’m sure I’lll ...
    Greater AucklandBy Connor Sharp
    1 week ago
  • Turning Away – Who Cares If We Don't?
    On the turning awayFrom the pale and downtroddenAnd the words they say which we won't understandDon't accept that, what's happeningIs just a case of other's sufferingOr you'll find that you're joining inThe turning awayToday’s guest kōrero is from Author Catherine Lea. So without further ado, over to Catherine…I’m so honoured ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    1 week ago
  • Dissecting Tickled
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    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    1 week ago
  • New Zealand Webworm Popup + Tickled!
    Hi,I’m doing a Webworm merch popup followed by a Tickled screening in Auckland, New Zealand on July 13th — and I’d love you to come. I got the urge to do this while writing this Webworm piece breaking down how we made Tickled, and talking to all the people who ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    1 week ago
  • What China wants from NZ business
    One simple statistic said it all: China Premier Li Qiang asked Fonterra CEO Miles Hurrell what percentage of the company’s overall sales were made in China. “Thirty per cent,” said Hurrell. In other words, New Zealand’s largest company is more or less dependent on the Chinese market. But Hurrell is ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    1 week ago
  • Review: The Worm Ouroboros, by E.R. Eddison (1922)
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    1 week ago
  • 2024 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #24
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    1 week ago
  • Sunday Morning Chat
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    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    1 week ago
  • The Book of Henry
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    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    1 week ago
  • Fact Brief – Is ocean acidification from human activities enough to impact marine ecosystems?
    Skeptical Science is partnering with Gigafact to produce fact briefs — bite-sized fact checks of trending claims. This fact brief was written by Sue Bin Park in collaboration with members from the Skeptical Science team. You can submit claims you think need checking via the tipline. Is ocean acidification from human ...
    1 week ago
  • Happiness is a Warm Gun
    She's not a girl who misses muchDo do do do do do, oh yeahShe's well-acquainted with the touch of the velvet handLike a lizard on a window paneI wouldn’t associate ACT with warmth, other than a certain fabled, notoriously hot, destination where surely they’re heading and many would like them ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    1 week ago
  • Still doing a good 20
    Hello! Here comes the Saturday edition of More Than A Feilding, catching you up on the past somewhat interrupted week. Still on the move!Share Read more ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    1 week ago
  • Coalition of the Unwilling?
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    PunditBy Brian Easton
    2 weeks ago
  • Of red flags and warning signs in comments on social media
    Somewhat surprisingly for what is regarded as a network of professionals, climate science misinformation is getting shared on LinkedIn, joining other channels where this is happening. Several of our recent posts published on LinkedIn have attracted the ire of various commenters who apparently are in denial about human-caused climate change. Based ...
    2 weeks ago
  • All good, still
    1. On what subject is Paul Henry even remotely worth giving the time of day?a. The state of our nationb. The state of the ACT partyc. How to freak out potential buyers of your gin palace by baking the remains of your deceased parent into its fittings2. Now that New ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    2 weeks ago
  • The looting is the point
    Last time National was in power, they looted the state, privatising public assets and signing hugely wasteful public-private partnership (PPP) contracts which saw foreign consortiums provide substandard infrastructure while gouging us for profits. You only have to look at the ongoing fiasco of Transmission Gully to see how it was ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • The Illusion of Power: How Local Government Bureaucrats Overawe Democratically-Elected Councillors..
    The Democratic Façade Of Local Government: Our district and city councillors are democratically elected to govern their communities on one very strict condition – that they never, ever, under any circumstances, attempt to do so.A DISINTEGRATION OF LOYALTIES on the Wellington City Council has left Mayor Tory Whanau without a ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Lowlights & Bright Spots
    I can feel the lowlights coming over meI can feel the lowlights, from the state I’m inI can see the light now even thought it’s dimA little glow on the horizonAnother week of lowlights from our government, with the odd bright spot and a glow on the horizon. The light ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    2 weeks ago
  • Weekly Roundup 14-June-2024
    Another week, another roundup of things that caught our eye on our favourite topics of transport, housing and how to make cities a little bit greater. This Week in Greater Auckland On Monday, Connor wrote about Kāinga Ora’s role as an urban development agency Tuesday’s guest post by ...
    Greater AucklandBy Greater Auckland
    2 weeks ago
  • The Hoon around the week to June 14
    Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: The podcast above of the weekly ‘hoon’ webinar for paying subscribers features co-hosts and talking with:The Kākā’s climate correspondent about the National-ACT-NZ First Government’s moves this week to take farming out of the ETS and encourage more mining and oil and ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    2 weeks ago
  • Climate policy axed in broad daylight, while taxpayer liabilities grow in the dark
    In 2019, Shane Jones addressed the “50 Shades of Green” protest at Parliament: Now he is part of a government giving those farmers a pass on becoming part of the ETS, as well as threatening to lock in offshore oil exploration and mining for decades. Photo: Lynn GrievesonTL;DR: Here’s the ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    2 weeks ago
  • Rage Bait!
    Hi,Today’s newsletter is all about how easy it is to get sucked into “rage bait” online, and how easy it is to get played.But first I wanted to share something that elicited the exact opposite of rage in me — something that made me feel incredibly proud, whilst also making ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    2 weeks ago
  • Bernard's Dawn Chorus and pick 'n' mix for Friday, June 14
    Seymour said lower speed limits “drained the joy from life as people were forced to follow rules they knew made no sense.” File Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: My six things to note in Aotearoa-NZ’s political economy around housing, climate and poverty on Friday, June 14 were:The National/ACT/NZ First ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    2 weeks ago
  • Friendly but frank talks with China Premier
    It sounded like the best word to describe yesterday’s talks between Chinese Premier Li Qiang and his heavyweight delegation of Ministers and officials and Prime Minister Christopher Luxon and New Zealand Ministers and officials was “frank.” But it was the kind of frankness that friends can indulge in. It ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    2 weeks ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #24 2024
    Open access notables Wildfire smoke impacts lake ecosystems, Farruggia et al., Global Change Biology: We introduce the concept of the lake smoke-day, or the number of days any given lake is exposed to smoke in any given fire season, and quantify the total lake smoke-day exposure in North America from 2019 ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Join us for the weekly Hoon on YouTube Live
    Photo by Mathias Elle on UnsplashIt’s that new day of the week (Thursday rather than Friday) when we have our ‘hoon’ webinar with paying subscribers to The Kākā for an hour at 5 pm.Jump on this link on YouTube Livestream for our chat about the week’s news with special guests:5.00 ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    2 weeks ago
  • Geoffrey Miller: China’s message to New Zealand – don’t put it all at risk
    Don’t put it all at risk. That’s likely to be the take-home message for New Zealand Prime Minister Christopher Luxon in his meetings with Li Qiang, the Chinese Premier. Li’s visit to Wellington this week is the highest-ranking visit by a Chinese official since 2017. The trip down under – ...
    Democracy ProjectBy Geoffrey Miller
    2 weeks ago

  • Transformative investment in cancer treatments and more new medicines
    The coalition Government is delivering up to 26 cancer treatments as part of an overall package of up to 54 more new medicines, Health Minister Dr Shane Reti and Associate Health Minister David Seymour announced today. “Pharmac estimates that around 175,000 people will benefit from the additional treatments in just ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    18 hours ago
  • More support for drought-affected communities
    The coalition Government is providing more financial support to drought-stricken farmers and growers in many parts of the country to help with essential living costs. “Rural Assistance Payments have been made available in 38 districts affected by dry conditions to help eligible farmers and growers whose income has taken a ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    23 hours ago
  • Job seekers to report on progress after six months from today
    A new requirement for people on Jobseeker Support benefits to meet with MSD after six months to assess how their job search is going gets underway today. About 20,000 Jobseeker beneficiaries with full-time work obligations are expected to attend MSD’s new ‘Work check-in’ seminars over the next 12 months, Social ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    24 hours ago
  • New cops means more Police on the beat
    The decision to deploy more Police on the beat in Auckland CBD has been welcomed by Police Minister Mark Mitchell and Associate Police Minister Casey Costello. Starting from 1 July, an additional 21 police officers will be redeployed in Auckland City, bringing the total number of beat police in the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Government takes action to address youth crime
    The Government is introducing a new declaration for young offenders to ensure they face tougher consequences and are better supported to turn their lives around, Children’s Minister Karen Chhour announced today. The establishment of a Young Serious Offender declaration delivers on a coalition Government commitment and supports the Government’s target ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Reserve Bank chair reappointed
    Professor Neil Quigley has been reappointed as Chair of the Reserve Bank of New Zealand Board for a further term of two years, until 30 June 2026.  “Professor Quigley has played a key role in establishing the new Board after the commencement of the new RBNZ Act on 1 July ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • School attendance increases
    School attendance data released today shows an increase in the number of students regularly attending school to 61.7 per cent in term one. This compares to 59.5 per cent in term one last year and 53.6 per cent in term four. “It is encouraging to see more children getting to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Record investment in public transport services
    The Government has announced a record 41 per cent increase in indicative funding for public transport services and operations, and confirmed the rollout of the National Ticketing Solution (NTS) that will enable contactless debit and credit card payments starting this year in Auckland, Transport Minister Simeon Brown says.“This Government is ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • GDP data shows need to strengthen and grow the economy
    GDP figures for the March quarter reinforce the importance of restoring fiscal discipline to public spending and driving more economic growth, Finance Minister Nicola Willis says.  Data released today by Stats NZ shows GDP has risen 0.2 per cent for the quarter to March.   “While today’s data is technically in ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Women continue to make up over 50 per cent on public sector boards
    Women’s representation on public sector boards and committees has reached 50 per cent or above for the fourth consecutive year, with women holding 53.9 per cent of public sector board roles, Acting Minister for Women Louise Upston says. “This is a fantastic achievement, but the work is not done. To ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Government supporting Māori business success
    The Coalition Government is supporting Māori to boost development and the Māori economy through investment in projects that benefit the regions, Regional Development Minister Shane Jones and Māori Development Minister Tama Potaka say. “As the Regional Development Minister, I am focused on supporting Māori to succeed. The Provincial Growth Fund ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Better solutions for earthquake-prone buildings
    Building and Construction Minister Chris Penk has announced that the review into better managing the risks of earthquake-prone buildings has commenced. “The terms of reference published today demonstrate the Government’s commitment to ensuring we get the balance right between public safety and costs to building owners,” Mr Penk says.  “The Government ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Prime Minister wraps up visit to Japan
    Prime Minister Christopher Luxon has just finished a successful three-day visit to Japan, where he strengthened political relationships and boosted business links. Mr Luxon’s visit culminated in a bilateral meeting with Japanese Prime Minister Kishida Fumio followed by a state dinner. “It was important for me to meet Prime Minister Kishida in person ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Major business deals signed on PM’s Japan trip
    Significant business deals have been closed during the visit of Prime Minister Christopher Luxon to Japan this week, including in the areas of space, renewable energy and investment.  “Commercial deals like this demonstrate that we don’t just export high-quality agricultural products to Japan, but also our world-class technology, expertise, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Strategic Security speech, Tokyo
    Minasan, konnichiwa, kia ora and good afternoon everyone. Thank you for the invitation to speak to you today and thank you to our friends at the Institute for International Socio-Economic Studies and NEC for making this event possible today.  It gives me great pleasure to be here today, speaking with ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • National Infrastructure Pipeline worth over $120 billion
    The National Infrastructure Pipeline, which provides a national view of current or planned infrastructure projects, from roads, to water infrastructure, to schools, and more, has climbed above $120 billion, Infrastructure Minister Chris Bishop says. “Our Government is investing a record amount in modern infrastructure that Kiwis can rely on as ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Making it easier to build infrastructure
    The Government is modernising the Public Works Act to make it easier to build infrastructure, Minister for Land Information Chris Penk announced today. An independent panel will undertake an eight-week review of the Act and advise on common sense changes to enable large scale public works to be built faster and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • NZ enhances North Korea sanctions monitoring
    New Zealand will enhance its defence contributions to monitoring violations of sanctions against North Korea, Prime Minister Christopher Luxon announced today.  The enhancement will see the New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF) increase its contributions to North Korea sanctions monitoring, operating out of Japan. “This increase reflects the importance New Zealand ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Speech to Safeguard National Health and Safety Conference
    Good afternoon everyone. It’s great to be with you all today before we wrap up Day One of the annual Safeguard National Health and Safety Conference. Thank you to the organisers and sponsors of this conference, for the chance to talk to you about the upcoming health and safety consultation. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Ōtaki to north of Levin alliance agreements signed
    Transport Minister Simeon Brown has welcomed an important milestone for the Ōtaki to north of Levin Road of National Significance (RoNS), following the NZ Transport Agency (NZTA) signing interim alliance agreements with two design and construction teams who will develop and ultimately build the new expressway.“The Government’s priority for transport ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Improvements to stopping Digital Child Exploitation
    The Department of Internal Affairs [Department] is making a significant upgrade to their Digital Child Exploitation Filtering System, which blocks access to websites known to host child sexual abuse material, says Minister of Internal Affairs Brooke van Velden.  “The Department will incorporate the up-to-date lists of websites hosting child sexual ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • New vaccine research aims to combat prevalent bovine disease
    A vaccine to prevent an infectious disease that costs New Zealand cattle farmers more than $190 million each year could radically improve the health of our cows and boost on-farm productivity, Associate Agriculture Minister Andrew Hoggard says. The Ministry for Primary Industries is backing a project that aims to develop ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Making it easier to build granny flats
    The Government has today announced that it is making it easier for people to build granny flats, Acting Prime Minister Winston Peters and RMA Reform Minister Chris Bishop say. “Making it easier to build granny flats will make it more affordable for families to live the way that suits them ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • High Court Judge appointed
    Attorney-General Judith Collins today announced the appointment of Auckland King’s Counsel Gregory Peter Blanchard as a High Court Judge. Justice Blanchard attended the University of Auckland from 1991 to 1995, graduating with an LLB (Honours) and Bachelor of Arts (English). He was a solicitor with the firm that is now Dentons ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Health workforce numbers rise
    Health Minister Dr Shane Reti says new data released today shows encouraging growth in the health workforce, with a continued increase in the numbers of doctors, nurses and midwives joining Health New Zealand. “Frontline healthcare workers are the beating heart of the healthcare system. Increasing and retaining our health workforce ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Government to overhaul firearms laws
    Associate Justice Minister Nicole McKee has today announced a comprehensive programme to reform New Zealand's outdated and complicated firearms laws. “The Arms Act has been in place for over 40 years. It has been amended several times – in a piecemeal, and sometimes rushed way. This has resulted in outdated ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Government delivers landmark specialist schools investment
    The coalition Government is delivering record levels of targeted investment in specialist schools so children with additional needs can thrive. As part of Budget 24, $89 million has been ringfenced to redevelop specialist facilities and increase satellite classrooms for students with high needs. This includes: $63 million in depreciation funding ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Major health and safety consultation begins
    A substantial consultation on work health and safety will begin today with a roadshow across the regions over the coming months, says Workplace Relations and Safety Minister Brooke van Velden.  This the first step to deliver on the commitment to reforming health and safety law and regulations, set out in ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Growing the potential of New Zealand’s forestry sector in partnership
    Forestry Minister Todd McClay, today announced the start of the Government’s plan to restore certainty and confidence in the forestry and wood processing sector. “This government will drive investment to unlock the industry’s economic potential for growth,” Mr McClay says. “Forestry’s success is critical to rebuilding New Zealand’s economy, boosting ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Government cancels forestry ETS annual service charges for 2023-24
    Annual service charges in the forestry Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS) will be cancelled for 2023/24, Forestry Minister Todd McClay says. “The sector has told me the costs imposed on forestry owners by the previous government were excessive and unreasonable and I agree,” Mr McClay says. “They have said that there ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • Speech to the LGNZ Infrastructure Symposium
    Introduction Thank you for having me here today and welcome to Wellington, the home of the Hurricanes, the next Super Rugby champions. Infrastructure – the challenge This government has inherited a series of big challenges in infrastructure. I don’t need to tell an audience as smart as this one that ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Government boosts Agriculture and food trade with China
    Trade and Agriculture Minister Todd McClay and Food Safety Minister Andrew Hoggard welcomed outcomes to boost agricultural and food trade between New Zealand and China. A number of documents were signed today at Government House that will improve the business environment between New Zealand and China, and help reduce barriers, including on infant formula ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • NZ and China launch Services Trade Negotiations
    Trade Minister Todd McClay, and China’s Commerce Minister Wang Wentao, today announced the official launch of Negotiations on Services Trade between the two countries.  “The Government is focused on opening doors for services exporters to grow the New Zealand’s economy,” Mr McClay says.  As part of the 2022 New Zealand-China Free Trade Agreement Upgrade ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Prime Minister Luxon meets with Premier Li
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    2 weeks ago
  • Government and business tackling gender pay gap
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    2 weeks ago
  • Funding Boost for Rural Support Trusts
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    2 weeks ago
  • Latest data shows size of public service decreasing
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    2 weeks ago
  • Speech to the Law Association
    Thank you to the Law Association for inviting me to speak this morning. As a former president under its previous name — the Auckland District Law Society — I take particular satisfaction in seeing this organisation, and its members, in such good heart. As Attorney-General, I am grateful for these ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • 25 years on, NZ reaffirms enduring friendship with Timor Leste
    New Zealand is committed to working closely with Timor-Leste to support its prosperity and resilience, Foreign Minister Winston Peters says.   “This year is the 25th anniversary of New Zealand sending peacekeepers to Timor-Leste, who contributed to the country’s stabilisation and ultimately its independence,” Mr Peters says.    “A quarter ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • Inquiry requested into rural banking
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    2 weeks ago

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