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Govt must lead Chch rebuild

Written By: - Date published: 12:20 pm, March 1st, 2011 - 42 comments
Categories: disaster - Tags:

The government’s wage subsidy and universal redundancy for quake-affected workers is a start. But with 750 red-stickered buildings in the CBD alone and 200+ jobs already lost, it is just a start. The private sector won’t rebuild without demand, that will have to be supplied by the government upping its spending, and that needs to be paid for.

An earthquake levy that effectively reverses the tax cuts for the rich is needed. Key says that would hurt economic growth. What rot. How does Key pocketing at least $23,000 a year and Telecom’s Paul Reynolds pocketing more than $420,000 a year help the economy one jot? Does it encourage them to be more productive? Of course not. And besides, what economic growth? Even without the quake, NZIER says, growth would be just 1.3%, down from an earlier prediction of 2.3% and basically the same as population growth, due to the oil and food price shock we’re experiencing. With the quake too, growth will be just 0.3% this year and that will be entirely in the form of a one-off hit from the Rugby World Cup.

We can no longer plan to simply grow our way out of trouble. The rebuilding of Christchurch needs to be funded by tapping that enormous wealth transfer to the rich that National made with their tax cuts. No-one else has the money.

Instead, Bill English is proposing to hit Kiwi families worth even larger spending cuts, undermining public services that are already in trouble. He’s also planning to borrow more, which is interesting because a month ago we were being spun that we couldn’t borrow any more and had to sell assets. Doubtlessly, the extra debt taken on now will be used to scaremonger for asset sales at the election. All needless when the rich are sitting on hundreds of millions in new tax cuts.

Turning from funding the recovery to how it should be done-

Wage subsidies and universal redundancy – which National voted against last year and had just introduced for the quake-affected, albeit funded with public money – are good starts but Christchurch will really need a functioning economy to create jobs. The private sector will not lead this and, unfortunately, it appears the government is assuming it will. Sure, businesses will get insurance payouts but they won’t use the money to re-establish operations in Christchurch CBD if it’s a ghost-town, and every business that closes will have a domino effect. There needs to be a critical mass of economic activity, which the government can supply by taking on the rebuilding risk.

SOE Meridian is showing the way by commissioning a new building for its Christchurch call-centre despite its two existing sites being operational. This will mean more economic activity to create jobs, more office space for private businesses, and a replacement building setting the highest earthquake and energy-efficiency standards.

Housing New Zealand should undertake joint equity schemes with homeowners to ensure new homes are also built to the highest standards.

Overarching all this there should be a plan for a sustainable, more liveable city. While rebuilding the architectural charms of the city, the chance must not to lost to design transport and energy systems using the very best of 21st tech and knowledge. Rebuilding should not be done ad hoc and on the cheap. Planning needs to start now.

A final note. At the time of the first quake, I suggested transferring the EQC levy from home insurance premiums to rate so contributions to nd access to the scheme would be universal. I also suggested a tiny natural disaster income protection levy of about $5 per worker per year to cover wages up to the average wage. Obviously, neither of these ideas could have been in place in time for this second quake but they should still be looked at.

42 comments on “Govt must lead Chch rebuild”

  1. Lanthanide 1

    This is mostly sarcastic, but as the geological analysis continues, we may find that CHCH is now at ‘lesser risk’ of large quakes in the foreseeable future than Wellington. They should move parliament to CHCH.

  2. The Economic Illiteracy Support Group 2

    The other immediate source of funding for rebuilding Christchurch is the $11 billion that Steven Joyce intends spending on roads in the next decade. The choice between reconstructing people’s homes and building more motorways should not be a difficult one – except for the National Party. of course.

    • Lanthanide 2.1

      I’m wondering when/if work on the motorway they were building through CHCH (right near my house and work, I use the existing one quite frequently) will start up again.

      On Wednesday when I left, the cranes were still up in the air. On Sunday when I got back, they’d lowered them so they’re lying on the ground now.

      captcha: week

    • RobertM 2.2

      Excellent. Like San Francisco we should stop building motorways. Joyce and Blinglish don’t seem to have got the message of Celia Wade Brown’s victory. Prentergasts crime of the motorway ripping the heart out of Wellington needs to be stopped.
      Beyond the green idea of a levy, the other obvious source of revenue would be modifying the student fees which are very low by international standards.
      But I don’t know how much the CBD should be rebuilt- why not just make it a green zone extension of hagley park with a few galleries. Most of the major corporates will have relocated elsewhere within Christchurch. And I suspect the earthquake has finally destroyed the human heart of Christchurch. Most of the interesting lanes, bars and establishments that the ‘Melbournisatiion ‘ of Christchurch was being based on will have disappeared under rubble.
      Has SOL square survived. What about the Invercargill safety tram of l921 they were rebuilding at Ferrymead. Possibly two international cities Auck and Wgtn are all that is possible.

  3. lprent 3

    Bugger the buildings, that is almost a secondary consideration (although worth planning for now). What I’m interested in is seeing the plan for putting the infrastructure back in place.

    People can’t live or work effectively if the roads have ruddy great big holes in them, the water system is erratic or non-existent or contaminated by sewerage, the sewerage system excretes onto the surface or into the water tables, the power has brownouts or frequent failures, fuel storage systems create high risks from leakage and the telecoms goes up and down like a yo-yo.

    What I haven’t seen anywhere yet is a coherent timetable or where and when the money and resources will arrive to make that happen. There is quite a time constraint because if those services are not repaired over the next few months then; businesses will fold, people will leave; and a lot of the rebuilding becomes a bit moot.

    It is implicit in the bit of funding to tide over companies and their employees that this will happen in the next 6 weeks. But if there isn’t a clear plan for it now then businesses might as well use that money to shut themselves down gracefully.

  4. Tel 4

    The traditional response to disasters like Christchurch is almost always based around the Government stumping up and carrying out a rebuild. Government (and local government) resolve in disaster management carries with it muscle and firepower, but it also inherently generates waste, and high costs of compliance. There is another way.

    I’ve maintained an opinion for most of my working life in architecture that we (NZ) need to be able to opt out of complying with the Building Act and build whatever we want, out of anything we want, where ever we want. A basic national safe and sanitary standard (some of which has been written and has existed in the past with the old NZS1900) would need to exist to protect both owners and the public, and compliance with planning ordinances nationally adhered to, but otherwise do what you like. Planning bylaws in CHCH on the other hand could easily be put back to the public for re-evaluation and a new consensus formed about the future for the city. What better time than right now?

    The right winged thinkers usually throw their hands up in horror when confronted with such ideas, foaming at the mouth and gibbering wildly about plummeting house values, and sandle wearing hippies living next door, and yet the basic value is based around individuals taking responsibility and action. The consenting system could still operate in parallel, and consumers would have a choice on the property market. Purchase a code compliant building and pay a premium (? I would argue many current code compliant buildings are worth no more than houses made of old rope and cow dung) or purchase an un-consented building and let the market realise it’s true value. Given the abject failure of some of our buildings due to the CHCH earthquake and the leaky building epidemic, why would any sane person argue that it’s worked or will even continue to work?

    CHCH needs to become a vibrant happening place, encouraging free thinking and invention, and from this new industries may well spring up, creating a new momentum and enthusiasm for people to live there or seek it out.

    Under any National lead coalition all we’ll see is a strangled financial response, unsustainable haphazard private development, and decades of social problems we’ll all end up paying for one way or another. Key and his cronies are incapable of doing anything else, too fearful and conservative to take a bold step. With National “CH-CH” is the sound of a gun being loaded. I’m just wondering where they’re going to point it.

    • RedLogix 4.1

      With National “CH-CH” is the sound of a gun being loaded. I’m just wondering where they’re going to point it.

      Cripes… that’s a potent metaphor.

    • jh 4.2

      “I’ve maintained an opinion for most of my working life in architecture that we (NZ) need to be able to opt out of complying with the Building Act and build whatever we want, out of anything we want, where ever we want. ”

      Won’t that stuff things for the neighbors? EG if you build a 100 meter tower you will cast a long shadow? My freedom begins where your’s ends?
      oops sorry didn’t read it correctly.. but you’re sure that wont happen?

    • jh 4.3

      “Planning bylaws in CHCH on the other hand could easily be put back to the public for re-evaluation and a new consensus formed about the future for the city. What better time than right now?”
      How are you going to stop maximising building per site = maximum profit.

  5. Sanctuary 5

    Equality in sacrifice from ALL New Zealanders should be what we demand from John Key.

    The idea that middle and low income New Zealanders will be expected to valiantly shoulder all the cost of the rebuilding of our city while the fat cats get to keep their tax cuts and caviar should be rightly reviled as the repulsive actions of plutocrats it is by all patriotic Kiwis.

  6. Bed Rater 6

    “The private sector won’t rebuild without demand, ”

    Yes, and if there is no demand, then there is no reason to rebuild. Private funds, from insurance payouts (e.g. EQC, and private insurers) will go where the holders of these funds direct. If it’s not Christchurch, then it’s just not meant to be.

    • Colonial Viper 6.1

      Without the deftest management by the CCC and central Government, the majority of Christchurch CBD buildings which need to be rebuilt will not be.

      The business calculus for the owners of all those destroyed commercial buildings is simple. With their upcoming insurance payouts, those commercial property owners have essentially found instant buyers for their buildings.

      With those millions in insurance monies, these property owners can either decide to rebuild or they can decide to run. This is what they are going to consider while making this decision:

      – All their former tenants gone or going out of business.
      – Vast uncertainties in Christchurch property values going forwards.
      – A probability of serious urban depopulation over the next 24 months

      What would you do with the money?

  7. IrishBill 7

    It looks like it will be working people with children and students that have to pay: http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10709454

    • Teej 7.1

      Yeah – the irony is that my family will be forced to leave Christchurch (and NZ) not ‘cos of the quake, but ‘cos of Bill English’s masturbatory fixation on New Right “solutions”. Surely a levy on all Kiwis is the fairest way to generate the funds to fix my city? And besides, if it’s good enough for the Aussies, surely it’s good enough for us… Beating up on the poor, students and the rest is unnecessarily cruel.

    • Pay 7.2

      You mean they will “pay” by loosing their subsidy. I’m a working person without children to visit me when I’m lonely in my old age but I have to pay for those that do (but that’s another story).

  8. Monty 8

    This earthquake is tragic in very sense. The loss of life, of house, of community (as some people leave on a permanent basis) of everything the people of Christchurch has known is someting I would never wish on a single person.

    But rebuilding of the CBD and even of the houses lost is not the Government responsibility. Red Tape should be cleared to allow bulding to progress faster, but importantly that doing this does not sacrifice quality. And ensuring the engineering is done correctly is now so important for peace of mind as well as future proofing the new city that must emerge.

    Before any commercial property is rebuilt there will need to be insurance claims processed. Then new tenants will need to be found. The issue here is that newer and better quality buildings will be constructed to replace the older buildings. The better quality buildings will need to attract tenants. Tenants who may no longer exist, or who may have already left to set up shop elsewhere. The rebuilding will not happen overnight for these reasons. But perhaps over a decade maybe even two decades. It is foolish to think that re-building the demolished shop/ office/ factory / house will happen just because there has been an insurance payout. So much more needs to happen first – not the least the aftershocks to stop. Labour may also be a limiting factor. Have the workers left town? One thing is for sure – market rates for people with in demand skills should increase and as a result they may get wage increases. (The Market will find the right rate)

    The urgent priorities will be to get the roads and water services functional. Then there needs to be a plan for the city – high priority sites and lower priority will be identified. we know you lot just love the idea of tax cuts – but then again the country did not vote National in to raise taxes – and I suppose in November 2011 we will all decide whether or not the country wants the National Party solution or the Labour Party Solution. I have a strong feeling your envu politics will be voted down by the people. In much the same way – I do not expect your ideas on welfare expansion to get much of a showing.

    [Most of this comment is just fine… but flogging the tired old troll line ‘the politics of envy’ triggers the wrong kind of attention. …RL]

    • Red Tape should be cleared to allow bulding to progress faster

      Yep, lets clear that red tape. Get rid of it, it is unnecessary and puts a brake on private enterprise.

      We should start with earthquake standards, after all Christchurch will never be hit by an earthquake, let alone two.

      There are successful overseas models such as Haiti …

      • Monty 8.1.1

        Fool – since you are incapable of reading I will repeat this part “Red Tape should be cleared to allow bulding to progress faster, but importantly that doing this does not sacrifice quality. And ensuring the engineering is done correctly is now so important for peace of mind as well as future proofing the new city that must emerge.”

        Plenty of red tape can be cleared by improving the consent process further. National Has of course taken steps in this regard, but there is still room for improvement

        • The Voice of Reason 8.1.1.1

          “Fool – since you are incapable of reading”

          You mean comprehending, Monty. Something Micky does way better than you.

          NZ is possibly the most red tape free country in the English speaking world and our consents processes are a doddle, particularly as you are not required to bribe your way through them. I like what little red tape we do have, too, because it’s what saved thousands of lives last Tuesday.

          • Lanthanide 8.1.1.1.1

            It’s a common righty delusion that we somehow have too much regulation and red-tape. National likes to parrot it every chance they get.

            I recall a survey done that concluded that NZ was the easiest country to do business in.

            • weka 8.1.1.1.1.1

              I’m not sure exactly what is being meant by red tape here, and I have no problem at all with stringent earthquake building regulations.

              But. There has been a massive change in the past decade in terms of the building consent process. It’s much more convoluted and expensive. Most people I know in the building trade put this down to over-reactions to leaky buildling syndrome (aka arse-covering by councils). I’m speaking of the experience of house building here.

              People trying to build within the sustainability sector, people who should be being supported and encouraged as we approach peak oil and climate change effects, face extraordinary difficulties getting new technologies accepted by councils. There is also a general inconsistency across the country in this regard which suggests that councils interpret things differently and come to different conclusions about what is ok practice and process.

              That’s all general comment, nothing about Chch in particular, except I will say this – there are still many kiwis capable of building their own homes and it’s much more difficult to do that now, not because we’re being safer but because we being scared.

              • Eddie

                considering leaky homes is a problem with a cost on the scale of the Chch earthquakes ($11.3 billion is the mid-range estimate), I’m hesitant about labeling stringent controls resulting from it as overreaction.

                It’s an enormous waste of capital to build a house, which should have a design life of a hundred years plus, only to have it have a good chance of failing within a couple of decades.

                • weka

                  Yes, but wasn’t the leaky building thing about cowboys not codes? I think it’s a fallacy that leaky building syndrome happened because we had lax codes. It happened because we had too many greedy and stupid people in the building industry.

                  All I know is that it’s much harder to build houses now (I’m in the SI) and that’s not because we needed more codes. It’s because councils have to be incredibly careful post-leaky building claims. So all the cowboys that built leaky homes have affected everyone else who already knew where the sensible limits were. It’s stiffling innovation, and creating an increasingly toxic industry far from the sustainable building that we should be excelling at now.

                  It’s also making homebuilding more and more for the rich. It’s possible to build simple, safe, structurally sound houses that will last a hundred years that aren’t hugely expensive. The consent process is driving up costs unnecessarily.

                  • Lanthanide

                    “It happened because we had too many greedy and stupid people in the building industry.”

                    How has this changed?

        • mickysavage 8.1.1.2

          But Monty I was suggesting that “red tape” actually has a really important role, just like bureaucrats. Earthquake standards are just one example of red tape which has shown to be very important.

          How about you list specific areas so we can see if reductions can be made.

          And how about you list overseas areas which present a model for what we should aspire to. I suggested Haiti because it does not have many standards. But a similar sized earthquake resulted in 300,000 deaths.

          Otherwise your statement reads like a string of slogans. Who can argue with cutting of red tape while at the same time not sacrificing quality and ensuring correct engineering and future proofing. The thing is that you may actually after analysis decide this is represented by the status quo.

          • Tel 8.1.1.2.1

            I have a slightly different take on red tape. If I was a government appointed contractor looking to improve the bottom line, the obvious “red tape” (read compliance costs) to cut through is too lobby government to waive the entire consenting process and fees. Obviously government would need to sign some form of insurance bond to guarantee owners are getting the real McCoy and to reassure the council they would not be held liable for any of the applied work.

            Will the only wedge(y) Parker get, be the one from behind by the biggest play ground bully in the country? 😯 😆

  9. Fisiani 9

    http://www.national.org.nz/Article.aspx?ArticleID=35289

    The government announces it will NOT lead Christchurch rebuilding. No.
    The government announces it will lead Christchurch rebuilding.
    Straw man argument fails again.

    • Lanthanide 9.1

      If John Key said black was white I’m sure you’d believe him, too.

      Talk is cheap.

    • Colonial Viper 9.2

      You see a Press Release from NACT and cheer.

      I’m waiting for a new CBD.

      Let’s talk again a bit down the track eh?

      • Lanthanide 9.2.1

        lprent was right, Fisi is such a laputian that his statements are so full of holes that they only have one simple and obvious rebuttal.

  10. Terry 10

    Look, I’m no political genius but as a Christchurch resident I believe John Key should reverse the tax cuts for the rich and channel that money into the recovery of our city. The rich don’t need the money (they never did) but we do.

    • Agreed Terry.

      Phil Goff came out today and expressed concern that the earthquake may be used to justify cuts to working for families and interest free student loans. Hopefully he will announce the reversal of the tax cuts as Labour policy so that Christchurch can be rebuilt if Labour wins.

      • Lanthanide 10.1.1

        They can very easily stand on this if National even try and cut WFF or IFSL.

        It can go like this:
        1. National promised fiscally neutral tax cuts, on the assumption that we would have growth to pay for them
        1a. Due to the horrible fiscal management of this government (use recent growth forecast of 2.3% to 0.3% with 1/2 of that being due to poor economic state), and lately the earthquake, the economy has not grown.
        2. The tax cuts were not fiscally neutral, and gave $23,000/year to John Key, and $xxx,000 to Rob Fyfe (since Air NZ is publically owned he’s fair game)
        3. John Key believes he needs this money more than the people in Christchurch. Instead he is going to take money from working middle class families, and from students trying to get an education – he is taking money from our future to rebuild Chirstchurch, instead of stumping up some of his own money.
        4. John Key believes a holiday highway north of Auckland that is used for 4 weeks of the year is more important than funding the repair of normal suburban roads in Christchurch that are used 52 weeks of the year.

        You could make a solid speech around it with some nice sound bites for the media.

      • Herodotus 10.1.2

        Perhaps before Phil yet again priomises soemthing that he can not delivery, there should be extensive geoteck, feasibility and town planning work undertaken to make sure that we do not make a very large mistake.
        Let us just blindly rebuild. “as Labour policy so that Christchurch can be rebuilt if Labour wins.” What happens if we find out that Christchurch ground is not suitable? What happens when insurance coys will not insure property in Chch due to increased risk factors, how do we get $$ from banks to rebuild, banks like to have insurance policies before they lend?
        What happens if we find out that Chch should be relocated to a more westery or northerly direction. Outside historic reasons why is Chch there? The port is physically seperated from the town, shifting it (if it is applicable) 10-20 minutes away would do little to reduce the town functionally.
        There is a need for some rational thinking. There are many cases in history where a thriving city/town has been left desolate due to natural distasters that have made the locals rethink their wisdom.
        And MS glad that you want to rebuild chch on the increases of taxes on teachers, doctors, nurses, police. Perhaps if Lab instead centred its ideas on not allowing those rich friends of theirs to get away with paying min to no tax would be a start. Remember all those tax miniminsing schemes that were setup or allowed to continue unabated over that massive unsubstainable property boom???

    • The Voice of Reason 10.2

      You don’t have be a Christchurch resident to see the logic in what you are suggesting, Terry. I think the whole country agrees with you. Well, almost the whole country. Dipton differs:

      http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/4718219/Govt-seeks-ways-to-pay-for-Christchurch-earthquake

  11. TightyRighty 11

    For once I even half heartedly agree with the sentiments expressed in this post. I find it interesting though that you don’t take further the idea that private groups wont rebuild without demand. I see on this site the opinion that government should spend more locally on contracts, how about expanding that idea and the buy new Zealand made campaign to a buy Canterbury made? The best thing for local manufacturing is an order, always. My manufacturers in Christchurch have expressed that to me personally and I am doing my best to supply them. Why not the rest of the country? Government could of course partake in this. Its a long term solution to a medium term catastrophe that could have far reaching benefits to all manufacturing in the nation. All without the need for excessive public spending.

    • Colonial Viper 11.1

      what do you mean by “excessive public spending” exactly?

      Because strong and appropriate public spending creates jobs, creates common infrastructure and enables egalitarian societal function in ways that private for profit enterprise never will.

    • The Economic Illiteracy Support Group 11.2

      TR is right – the best way to give confidence and stability to the Christchurch companies hit by the earthquake is to do business with them. The government needs to prime the pump by preferentially buying from Christchurch (pity they don’t build BMW limousines down there) so that the private sector has time to get their orders in. But neither party can do it on their own – it will take both government cash in the short term and private sector commitment in the medium term to restart a whole bunch of Christchurch businesses.

    • lprent 11.3

      I did. That was substantially what my comment on urgently doing the infrastructure first was about. Demand requires people and business to be present to be demanding.

      • TightyRighty 11.3.1

        Wholeheartedly agree with that sentiment. Government should take the lad in providing the framework, and therefore the confidence to do business. What must be avoided are plans to promote growth by vehicles that aren’t core government business. The one exception being taking the lead on buy Canterbury made scheme that includes both employers and unions. It’s a win win plan with far reaching economic and societal benefits. Ideally I’d like it to be placed in the hands of an NGO to avoid politicking, though given the circumstances, MED can and probably should run it.

        Oh, and CV, fuck off. This disaster should not be a vehicle for you and your ilk to try and profit politically with the aim of instituting a failed political system. Parasite.

  12. Kerry 12

    What makes the left think that government can afford the pipe dreams and provide, because individuals can’t. Stupid.
    Saw an analysis about Ireland the other day. Seems true for here. “The labour party is the party of civil servants.”
    The ripoff scheme has been to seize power. And then rob the workers so the civil servants can live fat and happy.
    An earthquake provides a good opportunity to proclaim the needs of the civil servants.

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    Transformers: The disaster of the Great Depression was transformed into a new and fairer society by the democratic socialism of the First Labour Government. The disaster of the Covid-19 Pandemic offers a similar transformative possibility to the Labour-NZ First-Green Government. Seize the time, Jacinda! You will never have a better ...
    3 days ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #12, 2020
    Tamper with The System? Well, we already are. But there's a difference between accidentally trickling sand into a precision gearbox versus formulating a plan to alter it on the fly with improvements in mind. One action is more or less innocently unscrupulous, the other amenable to earning an easy ...
    3 days ago
  • Avoidable hospitalisations: Helping our health system get through COVID-19
    Associate Prof George Thomson, Louise Delany, Prof Nick Wilson While it is possible that New Zealand can use intense public health controls to eradicate COVID-19 from the country – we must also plan for other scenarios where thousands of New Zealanders are sick – including many urgently hospitalised.1 Better resilience ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    3 days ago
  • Raise the Bar: 10 questions to ask your employer proposing redundancy
    Kia ora my name is Chloe Ann-King* and I am the founder of Raise the Bar, a campaign and non-profit that gives free legal aid, advocacy and tautoko to hospitality workers in Aotearoa. Right now all over our country hospo workers are being fired at will, having shifts cut or being ...
    PosseBy chloeanneking
    3 days ago
  • An equitable way to support business
    The Herald reports that the government is planning to lend billions of dollars to large businesses to keep them operating during the pandemic. As with mortgage relief, this is necessary: we need companies to stay in business, to reduce the economic damage and help things get restarted again when this ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • Hard News: Together Alone
    We're about to do something unprecedented as a nation. We hope that by taking this extraordinary action before a single life in New Zealand has been lost to the deadly novel virus we will save tens of thousands of lives. Our  lives. We'll do it together, in households, in isolation ...
    4 days ago
  • Why timing is everything: ‘A time to refrain from embracing’ starts today
    “There is a time for everything,    and a season for every activity under the heavens.”So writes the author of Ecclesiastes, a book in the Old Testament that’s counted as a ‘wisdom’ book and written as if by an unnamed king of Jerusalem. But who would have thought there would be a time ...
    PunditBy Tim Watkin
    4 days ago
  • Dealing with the Covid-19 Tsunami.
    I was surprised when the prime minister described the Economic Response to Covid-19 package as the ‘largest peacetime government spend in New Zealand's history’. Reflecting – checking through history – I realised that the term ‘spend’ was crucial and the package had no income tax cuts. Even so, it has ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    4 days ago
  • What about renters?
    The government today announced the latest part of its pandemic relief package: a six-month mortgage holiday for people whose incomes have been affected by the pandemic. Which is great, because these people are going to need help, and that's what the government should be doing. At the same time, it ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • Living within our means.
    Years ago the Argentine sociologist Carlos Weisman wrote a book titled “Living within our Means.” It was a critique of Argentine society that focused on the paradoxical question of why, in a land of plenty, there was so much economic instability, inequality, corruption and political turmoil. His conclusion was basically ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    4 days ago
  • Transparency and the pandemic
    Parliament will be leading by example and adjourning tomorrow after a special sitting to consider an epidemic notice and state of emergency. Day-to-day oversight of the government will be delegated to a select committee. But that's not the only overight mechanism. The OIA will still be law, and (so far) ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • ‘Overjoyed’: a leading health expert on New Zealand’s coronavirus shutdown, and the challengin...
    Michael Baker, University of Otago Overjoyed. That’s not a word epidemiologists normally use, but that’s how I felt after hearing Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern’s announcement about New Zealand’s COVID-19 shutdown of everything except essential services for at least four weeks from midnight on Wednesday. More than anything, I just ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    4 days ago
  • One way to solve the housing crisis
    How much homelessness is caused by house hoarding? We're about to find out. The pandemic has destroyed tourism, which means that house hoarders who put their hoarded properties up as short-term tourist rentals are now offering them on the ordinary rental market:Property investors are pulling properties from Airbnb to offer ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • The pros and cons of planting trees to address global warming
    This is a re-post from Yale Climate Connections by Bruce Lieberman It seems like such a simple, straightforward, empowering idea: plant trees – a lot of trees – all over the world, and watch the planet’s temperature fall. Who doesn’t love a tree or two, even far more – the right ...
    5 days ago
  • Not a grand coalition, but a government of national salvation
    According to Newshub, Simon Bridges is open to joining a “grand coalition” with Labour as we hunker down to go into a month long lockdown. The idea is sound. Before now, the role of the opposition was to scrutinise and oppose. In the context of what almost amounts to a ...
    PunditBy Liam Hehir
    5 days ago
  • Raise the Bar: hospitality workers & wage subsidy entitlements
    Kia ora my name is Chloe Ann-King* and I am the founder of Raise the Bar, a campaign and non-profit that gives free legal aid, advocacy and tautoko to hospitality workers in Aotearoa. Right now all over our country hospo workers are being fired at will, having shifts cut or ...
    PosseBy chloeanneking
    5 days ago
  • Lifting our game against COVID-19
    We need to be lifting our game against COVID-19. You and I need to help those working to prevent the spread of COVID-19 while they’re trying to lift the testing and treatment efforts. We don’t want to be playing this game running backwards. Best to play it solidly forward, from ...
    SciBlogsBy Grant Jacobs
    5 days ago
  • The maths and ethics of minimising COVID-19 deaths in NZ
    Prof Tony Blakely, Prof Michael Baker, and Prof Nick Wilson The NZ Government must do more to clearly articulate its COVID-19 strategy: eradication or ‘flattening the curve’ mitigation. But to do so means understanding the maths and ethics of both these strategies. In this blog, we adapt our work for ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    5 days ago
  • All aboard the Covid Train
    A few days ago I was starting to write something about the pandemic, which now seems unconscionable. It took the form of a letter to an agony aunt:“Dear Deidre, I have an ugly confession. I am quite excited by Covid-19.”This is how the piece went:“I’m not a psychopath, honest. Although the ...
    PunditBy Phil Vine
    5 days ago
  • 2020 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming Digest #12
    Story of the Week... Toon of the Week... Climate Feedback Article Review... Coming Soon on SkS... Climate Feedback Claim Reviews... SkS Week in Review... Poster of the Week... Story of the Week... In Just 10 Years, Warming Has Increased the Odds of Disasters The likelihood of extreme events ...
    6 days ago
  • We are all socialists now
    Last week, the government announced a $12 billion initial package to support people during the pandemic. Today, the Reserve Bank is buying government bonds - effectively printing money - to keep up the money supply during the crisis. Normally such moves would have the right apoplectic. Instead, the National Party ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • A plea to experts: safeguard your role in public life
    I am a pundit, somebody who opines and comments on the news. There are no real qualifications to punditry though having a rudimentary way with words and good general knowledge helps. That is one reason there is a constant oversupply of would-be pundits and why it is quite hard to ...
    PunditBy Liam Hehir
    6 days ago
  • Enlightenment when?
    I recently encountered the following prescription from a Faculty of Education at a leading New Zealand University. At first I wondered if it was another product of the postmodern generator (http://www.elsewhere.org/journal/pomo/), designed to create gibberish in the postmodern form, but I’m told it is real: The “schooled” society: Towards the ...
    SciBlogsBy Michael Corballis
    6 days ago
  • What the Crisis Can teach Us
    The coronavirus pandemic has of course had a major impact on individual lives and on societies as a whole. But, long after the crisis has passed (assuming it does), we will begin to realise that its real and lasting significance lies in the lessons it has taught us, if only ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    7 days ago
  • Hammering home measures to stop COVID-19
    COVID-19 has plunged Aotearoa New Zealand (indeed, the world) into territory that, while maybe not totally unprecedented, certainly hasn’t been seen during the lifetimes of most of us here today. Our borders are closed to non-citizens, we’re being told not to gather in groups of more than 500 outside/100 inside, ...
    PunditBy Andrew Geddis
    7 days ago
  • What does ‘level two’ mean – and why does it matter?
    For the last few weeks, I’ve been urging you to prepare yourself, your family, business, and community for Covid-19. Now it’s time for real action.  Yesterday the director-general of health Dr Ashley Bloomfield announced another 13 confirmed cases of Covid-19 in New Zealand, bringing our total to date to 52. ...
    SciBlogsBy Siouxsie Wiles
    7 days ago
  • 2020 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #12
    A chronological listing of news articles linked to on the Skeptical Science Facebook Page during the past week, i.e., Sun, Mar 15, 2020 through Sat, Mar 21, 2020 Editor's Pick Now Isn’t the Time to Forget About Our Climate Change Efforts   Tasha Tilberg, Lindsey Wixson, and Liu Wen photographed ...
    7 days ago
  • Is the Guardian becoming  a real newspaper again?
    by Jan Rivers The article has been corrected to show that it was Ewen MacAskill, former Guardian journalist and not Luke Harding who travelled to meet Edward Snowden with journalist Glenn Greenwald and filmmaker Laura Poitras.  Some of the Guardian’s well-known journalists who did not sign the protest letter are ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Life asserts itself regardless
    by Cultural Worker Late March 2020 amidst the virus. With gigs crashing and burning all around it was without much hope that I called a long standing rest home booking: “ Hi, I’m supposed to be entertaining at your place this afternoon – is it still on?” “”If you don’t ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Politics, the possible, and the pandemic
    Whenever people demand real change from their politicians, we're told that "politics is the art of the possible". The implication is that change isn't possible, so we'd better just get used to the sucky status quo. But now that there's a pandemic, a lot of things we were previously told ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • The Only Way Through This Crisis Is Together.
    Together: In leading New Zealand through the Covid-19 Pandemic, the Prime Minister could do a lot worse than allow herself to be guided by the spirit of collective sacrifice and co-operation that animated the New Zealanders of 80 years ago. Most Kiwis alive today have had no opportunity to prove their ...
    1 week ago
  • GFC vs Covid-19
    It is said that generals fight the last war. In the case of the early stages of the Global Financial Crisis (GFC) they had learned from the Great Depression of the 1930s and they fought intelligently and successfully. Later their advice would be ignored in favour of the Austerians who ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    1 week ago
  • Nobody Left Behind.
    Solidarity Forever: All over the world, the arrival of the Covid-19 virus has exposed the fragility of the walls we erect around ourselves and our loved ones. It has shattered our illusions of autonomy and revealed to us how utterly dependent we all are on other human-beings. Finally, we see ...
    1 week ago
  • Rebuilding a truly “Democratic” counter, or a “moderate Republican” bolt-hol...
    Looking across the various arguments for/against the leading candidates to take the Democratic Nomination, you might honestly be very hard pressed to tell. There are a number of things that have now started happening since Amy Klobuchar and “Mayor Pete” Buttigieg both threw the towel in and immediately (and ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    1 week ago
  • Abortion law reform a win for women
    by Daphna Whitmore Abortion is no longer in the Crimes Act in New Zealand. The law reform passed yesterday and now abortion is a medical matter between a woman and her doctor. Many women’s groups and progressive people have campaigned for reform for decades. The women’s liberation movement and some ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • How to spot bogus science stories and read the news like a scientist
    Doug Specht, University of Westminster and Julio Gimenez, University of Westminster When fake news, misreporting and alternative facts are everywhere, reading the news can be a challenge. Not only is there plenty of misinformation about the coronavirus pandemic, climate change and other scientific topics floating around social media, you also ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • Why New Zealand needs to continue decisive action to contain coronavirus
    Michael Baker, University of Otago and Nick Wilson, University of Otago With some of the toughest border restrictions and a newly-announced NZ$500 million boost to health services, New Zealand is among a small number of countries with a strategy to contain the COVID-19 pandemic. New Zealand is also fortunate in ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    1 week ago
  • Parliament and the pandemic II
    As expected, the government has introduced a sessional order to allow Parliament to operate during the pandemic. You can read it on the Order Paper here, but the short version is that questions and motions can be filed electronicly, select committees can work remotely, and the the Business Committee can ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • When a virus goes viral: pros and cons to the coronavirus spread on social media
    Axel Bruns, Queensland University of Technology; Daniel Angus, Queensland University of Technology; Timothy Graham, Queensland University of Technology, and Tobias R. Keller, Queensland University of Technology News and views about coronavirus has spread via social media in a way that no health emergency has done before. Platforms like Twitter, Facebook, ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • How to survive 14 days of self-isolation
    So you’ve recently returned from overseas, come into contact with someone who tested positive, got a bit of a dry cough yourself or perhaps just want to self isolate for 14 days to avoid other people who might have COVID-19. Here are a few tips and tricks to help get ...
    1 week ago
  • Abortion Legislation Bill passes third reading
    Some fave speeches:     ...
    Boots TheoryBy Stephanie Rodgers
    1 week ago
  • Why Leadership Matters – More Than Anything.
    Our Good Fortune: Precisely because she has never been an ideologue (she calls herself a “pragmatic idealist”) Jacinda Ardern has a political nimbleness and spontaneity which, when infused with her exceptional emotional intelligence, produces spectacular demonstrations of leadership. Jacinda's empathic political personality contrasts sharply with the less-than-sunny ways of her ...
    1 week ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #11, 2020
    1 week ago
  • 68-51
    The Abortion Legislation Bill has just passed its third reading, 68-51. NZ First MPs bailed because their referendum amendment didn't pass, but there were plenty of MPs to provide a majority without them. The bill is a long way from perfect - most significantly, it subjects pregnant people who need ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • The ‘herd immunity’ route to fighting coronavirus is unethical and potentially dangerous
    As most of the world tries to suppress the coronavirus spread, some countries are going it alone – trying to manage the pandemic through so-called “herd immunity”. Herd immunity means letting a large number of people catch a disease, and hence develop immunity to it, to stop the virus spreading. ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • Eight new COVID-19 cases today. It’s no surprise when you look at some numbers
    So, as I sit at home with a very, very slight headache (i.e. not at work when I would otherwise be so), the now familiar figure of Ashley Bloomfield reports eight new confirmed cases of COVID-19  including two in Waikato. A surprise, given that we had just twelve yesterday? No. ...
    SciBlogsBy Marcus Wilson
    1 week ago
  • The WINZ Paradox versus the new COVID-19 Reality: Get real people, seriously…
    Many who advocated for, and voted for, the current Coalition – particularly those who voted Labour and the Green Party – expected to see a sea change in the reality of social services. A real, deep change of attitude, approach of process through which the system negotiates the difficult and ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    1 week ago
  • The Air New Zealand bailout
    Stuff reports that the government is going to have to throw $2 - 3 billion at Air new Zealand to get it through the pandemic. Good. While international routes are basicly closed, Air New Zealand is a strategic asset which is vital to our tourism industry, not to mentioning airfreight. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Why NZ’s tough coronavirus travel rules are crucial to protecting lives at home and across the Pac...
    New Zealand’s border restrictions will come with significant job and business losses in the tourism sector, both at home and in the Pacific. But the new travel rules are absolutely necessary to protect the health of New Zealanders and people right across Pacific Islands, because New Zealand is a gateway ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • The tiniest of teeth
    Back in early 2018, as a shoddy legal tactic to try and avoid the prisoner voting ban being formally declared inconsistent with the BORA by the Supreme Court, Justice Minister Andrew Little floated the idea of greater legal protection for human rights. When the Supreme Court case didn't go the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • One simple, common factor to success against COVID-19
    Professor Philip Hill and Associate Professor James Ussher Most infectious diseases have an Achilles heel, the secret is to find it. The question is if we don’t have a drug or a vaccine for COVID-19, is there something else we can do to beat it? Some people estimate that, without ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • National should isolate Simon Bridges
    The Coalition Governments $12.1 billion economic package to help combat the financial effects of COVID-19 was generally well received across the board, even amongst many business leaders who would normally be critical of a Labour led Government.However there was one glaringly obvious exception, Simon Bridges. The so-called leader of the ...
    2 weeks ago
  • How testing for Covid-19 works
    With confirmed cases of Covid-19 in New Zealand up to 12, many influential people are writing open letters and opinion pieces and doing press conferences asking why we aren’t pulling out all the stops and testing thousands of people a day like they are in South Korea. The thing is, ...
    SciBlogsBy Siouxsie Wiles
    2 weeks ago
  • The COVID-19 package and the limits of capitalism
    by Daphna Whitmore The willingness to put human life before business shows that sometimes capitalism is capable of suspending its relentless drive for profit. For a short time it can behave differently. Flatten the curve is the public health message since COVID-19 suddenly overwhelmed the hospital system in northern Italy. ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    2 weeks ago
  • Black April, May and June?
    Worldwide, the 1918 influenza epidemic – wrongly called ‘Spanish’ flu – lasted about two years. However, it lasted about six weeks in New Zealand (remembered as ‘Black November’, because the dead turned a purplish-black). It is thought about 7000 Pakeha died and 2,500 Maori. The population mortality rate was about ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    2 weeks ago
  • COVID 19 has struck… as has a lot of terrible ineptitude from far too many
    In a world and a time when the worst off and most vulnerable have been asked, time and again, to foot the bill for the complete subjugating to the will of the 1% thanks to the GFC, at a point where the world as a whole is now seeing quite ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    2 weeks ago
  • What’s in the Coronavirus Package?
    With the economy already reeling from a crisis that’s barely begun, the Government today sought to provide reassurance to workers and businesses in the form of a massive phallic pun to insert much-needed cash into the private sector and help fight the looming pandemic. Here are the key components: $5.1 ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • I just had my benefit suspended during a fucking pandemic
    I am a member of the working poor and so still need state welfare to make rent. So I had booked an appointment for yesterday with my caseworker at Work and Income New Zealand (WINZ) to apply for a transition to work grant. However the current health advice in New ...
    PosseBy chloeanneking
    2 weeks ago
  • A good first step
    Today the government announced a financial package to deal with the effects of the pandemic. So far, it looks good: an initial $500 million for health to deal with immediate priorities, wage subsidies for affected businesses, $585 a week from WINZ for people self-isolating who can't work from home, and ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago

  • Week That Was: COVID-19 Alert Level 4
    The COVID-19 situation in New Zealand is moving fast - and to avoid what we've seen overseas - the Government's response must be to move fast too. We're committed to keeping New Zealanders safe and well-informed every step of the way. ...
    10 hours ago
  • SPEECH: Green Party Co-leader James Shaw – Ministerial statement on State of National Emergency an...
    Thank you, Mr. Speaker.  The scale of what we face right now is unlike anything we have ever seen before. Overcoming it is our common purpose. ...
    3 days ago
  • Winston Peters urging New Zealanders overseas to stay put
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters is encouraging New Zealanders overseas to stay where they are amid the COVID-19 pandemic. "We are reaching a point where the best option for most New Zealanders offshore is to shelter in place, by preparing to safely stay where they are.” "This includes following the instructions ...
    4 days ago
  • New Zealanders overseas encouraged to shelter in place
    Rt. Hon. Winston Peters, Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Foreign Affairs Foreign Minister Winston Peters is encouraging the tens of thousands of New Zealanders travelling overseas to consider sheltering in place, in light of COVID-19.  “Since 18 March, we have been warning New Zealanders offshore that the window for flying ...
    4 days ago
  • Ground-breaking abortion law passes, giving NZers compassionate healthcare
    Ground-breaking law has passed that will decriminalise abortion and ensure women and pregnant people seeking abortions have compassionate healthcare. ...
    1 week ago
  • Package supports Kiwis to put collective health first
    The Green Party says that the measures announced by the Government today will help families and businesses to prioritise our collective health and wellbeing in the response to COVID-19. ...
    1 week ago
  • Winston Peters: COVID-19 rescue package ‘more significant’ than any worldwide
    As New Zealanders brace for a global downturn due to Covid-19, Deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters says his Coalition Government’s rescue package "more significant" than any other he's seen around the world. The Coalition is to reveal a multi-billion-dollar stimulus plan on Tuesday afternoon designed to cushion the economic blow ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Our response to COVID-19
    We know some people are feeling anxious about COVID-19. While the situation is serious, New Zealand has a world-class health system and we’re well-prepared to keep New Zealanders safe. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • ‘Demerit Points System’ will address youth crime
    Darroch Ball MP, Spokesperson for Law and Order A New Zealand First member’s bill drawn from the ballot today seeks to overhaul the youth justice system by instigating a system of demerit points for offences committed by young offenders. “The ‘Youth Justice Demerit Point System’ will put an end to ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Investment in kingfish farming
    Hon. Shane Jones, Minister for Regional Economic Development The Provincial Growth Fund is investing $6 million in a land-based aquaculture pilot to see whether yellowtail kingfish can be commercially farmed in Northland, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones announced today. A recirculating land-based aquaculture system will be built and operated ...
    2 weeks ago
  • 1BT grants for Northland planting
    Hon. Shane Jones, Minister for Forestry Forestry Minister Shane Jones has announced two One Billion Trees programme grants of more than $1.18 million to help hapu and iwi in Northland restore whenua and moana. “Many communities around Aotearoa have benefited from One Billion Trees funding since the programme was launched ...
    2 weeks ago
  • New Zealand reaffirms support for Flight MH17 judicial process
    Rt. Hon. Winston Peters, Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Foreign Affairs Ahead of the start of the criminal trial in the Netherlands on 9 March, Foreign Minister Winston Peters has reaffirmed the need to establish truth, accountability and justice for the downing of Flight MH17 ...
    2 weeks ago
  • PGF investment in green hydrogen
    Rt. Hon. Winston Peters, Deputy Prime Minister The Government is investing $19.9 million through the Provincial Growth Fund in a game-changing hydrogen energy facility in South Taranaki, Deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters announced today. “The development of alternative energy initiatives like this one is vital for the Taranaki region’s economy. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Coronavirus support for Pacific
    Rt. Hon. Winston Peters, Minister for Foreign Affairs Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters says New Zealand is partnering with countries in the Pacific to ensure they are prepared for, and able to respond to the global threat of Coronavirus (COVID-19). “There are currently no confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Green Party passes landmark law to ensure deaf and disabled voices heard equally in democracy
    Chlöe Swarbrick's Members Bill to support disabled general election candidates has passed into law. ...
    2 weeks ago

  • Tariff concessions on COVID-19 related products
    New Zealand will temporarily remove tariffs on all medical and hygiene imports needed for the COVID-19 response. Trade and Export Growth Minister David Parker and Commerce and Consumer Affairs Minister Kris Faafoi said today that the New Zealand Customs Service will apply tariff concessions to all diagnostic reagents and testing ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    10 hours ago
  • Clarification of modification to wage subsidy scheme
    Minister of Finance Grant Robertson has clarified that the changes to the wage subsidy scheme announced yesterday mean that employers should be passing on the full subsidy to workers, except in the case where the person’s normal income is less than the level of the subsidy. “We still want employers ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    12 hours ago
  • Face masks flowing to DHBs
    Medical face masks from the national reserve supply are now being distributed to District Health Boards, while at the same time local production is being ramped up. Yesterday more than 640,000 masks were sent to DHBS – that is an immediate two week supply, with more to follow in coming ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • COVID-19: Further steps to protect New Zealanders’ jobs
    The Government has made modifications to the wage subsidy scheme to ensure people don’t lose their jobs during the national lockdown. These changes will soften the impact of COVID-19 on workers, families and businesses, and position them to exit the lockdown and look to recovery, Finance Minister Grant Robertson says. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Tax relief for Mycoplasma Bovis farmers
    Farmers whose herds were culled in response to the outbreak of Mycoplasma bovis will be able to minimise the tax treatment of their income in some circumstances. Revenue Minister Stuart Nash says Cabinet has agreed to change the law. It means farmers may be eligible to spread their income over ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • $27 million for NGOs and community groups to continue providing essential services
    A $27 million dollar package, effective immediately, is being provided to social sector services and community groups to ensure they can continue to provide essential support to communities as we stay at home as a nation to stop the spread of COVID-19, Minister for Social Development Carmel Sepuloni announced. “At ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Statement on guilty plea of March 15 terrorist
    “The guilty plea today will provide some relief to the many people whose lives were shattered by what happened on March 15,” Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said. “These guilty pleas and conviction bring accountability for what happened and also save the families who lost loved ones, those who were injured, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • COVID-19 updates
    The Prime Minister is holding daily press conferences to update New Zealanders on the Government's response to COVID-19. Links to videos and transcripts of these updates below. These transcripts also include All of Government press conferences led by Director Ministry of Health's Director-General of Health Dr Ashley Bloomfield. 25 March: Live update from the Prime ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Police numbers break through 10,000 mark
    Frontline Police numbers have broken through the 10,000 mark for the first time in history as officers step forward to keep the community safe during the COVID19 lockdown. “Two Police graduations in Auckland and Wellington in the past week have been conducted in unprecedented circumstances,” Police Minister Stuart Nash said. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Urgent tax measures for economic recovery
    Urgent legislation has been passed to support the package of economic and social measures needed to recover from the impact of the coronavirus outbreak. “The COVID-19 Response (Taxation and Social Assistance Urgent Measures) Bill will cushion New Zealanders from the worst economic impacts of the COVID-19 outbreak,” said Revenue Minister ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Further support for farmers and growers as drought persists
    From tomorrow, Government support for farmers and growers affected by drought will be expanded and extended across the country, with access to Rural Assistance Payments (RAPS) available throughout the North Island, parts of the South Island and the Chatham Islands, Social Development Minister Carmel Sepuloni announced. “These challenging conditions have ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • COVID-19: Temporary changes to Education Act
    Parliament has passed amendments to legislation that give the Secretary of Education stronger powers to act in the fight to limit the spread of COVID-19, Education Minister Chris Hipkins said today. “They are part of a suite of changes passed under the COVID-19 Response (Urgent Management Measures) Legislation Bill,” Chris ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Canada, Australia, Chile, Brunei and Myanmar join NZ and Singapore in committing to keeping supply a...
    Canada, Australia, Chile, Brunei and Myanmar have joined forces with New Zealand and Singapore by committing to keep supply chains open and remove any existing trade restrictive measures on essential goods, especially medical supplies, in the face of the Covid-19 crisis.  Trade and Export Growth Minister David Parker today welcomed ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • COVID-19: Rent increase freeze and more protection for tenants
    Immediate freeze on rent increases Tenancies will not be terminated during the lock-down period, unless the parties agree, or in limited circumstances Tenants who had previously given notice can stay in their if they need to stay in the tenancy during the lock-down period Tenants will still be able to ...
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    3 days ago
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