web analytics

Labour’s support for renters

Written By: - Date published: 7:05 am, September 4th, 2017 - 54 comments
Categories: housing, labour - Tags: , , , ,

National have bungled the housing market and the crazy prices are turning us into a nation of renters. Renting is the norm in many countries, but they typically have better legal protection for tenants than us. So this move by Labour is both realistic and timely:

Making renting secure and healthy

“Labour is committed to restoring the Kiwi dream of owning your own place. We also recognise that long-term renting has become a reality for more families, but the current law creates instability and insecurity for many.

Labour will extend notice periods to 90 days so that renters have the time they need to move their lives. We will also abolish “no-cause” terminations. Rent increases will be limited to once a year instead of the current six months, and the formula for increases will need to be set in tenancy agreements so that tenants know what to expect. Letting fees will also be abolished.

“Labour will pass the Healthy Homes Bill into law, ensuring that all rentals are warm, dry, and healthy to live in. We’ll help with this by offering landlords $2,000 grants for insulation and heating. These measures will help stop our kids getting sick and dying of preventable diseases that have no place in a country like New Zealand.

“This package has been designed, based on international examples, to get the balance between tenants and landlords right.

“It’s time to make renting a stable, healthy option for families. Let’s do this,” says Jacinda Ardern.

Coverage:
Decision 17: Labour takes the side of renters
Labour strengthens renters’ rights with limits on rent rises, 90 day notices
Labour’s rental plan: no more letting fees and longer notice periods
Labour’s generation rent plan

While National revert to type with populist scaremongering, Labour is getting on with the business of releasing practical policy that supports real people and addresses real problems.

54 comments on “Labour’s support for renters”

  1. Carolyn_nth 1

    I want to know how this compares with TOP, The Green Party and NZ First policies.

    TOP Home not Houses Policy

    Tax reform on assets plus:

    TOP will change the regulations around residential tenancy law to match the German approach. Under this model the default standard lease makes it far easier for a tenant to remain in the premises long term. This will be achieved by restricting the conditions under which a landlord can evict a tenant to those of non-payment of rent or property damage. Sale of a property is not necessarily a legitimate reason for eviction.

    OP will expand the supply of social and affordable rental housing provided by not-for-profit organisations. We will achieve this by gifting Housing NZ stock to these community housing providers, giving them the equity and land they need to invest in expanding social housing and at-cost rental housing stock.

    Green Party Residential Tenancies (Safe and Secure Rentals) Amendment Bill

    Clearly they’ve spent a lot of time on this, and haven’t just parachuted it in to the election campaign, as it’s a Bill prepared a while ago.

    This Bill will:

    Remove the obligation on tenants to pay leasing fees
    Set a default of three years for fixed-term tenancies on the standard tenancy form, while maintaining the provision for both parties to opt out and set the term of their choice
    Remove the ability of landlords to give a reduced notice period of 42 days in the event that they decide to sell their tenanted property, and restore the standard 90-day notice period
    Limit rent increases to no more than once a year, regardless of tenancy type or term
    Require that the formula for calculating any future rent increase be included in tenancy agreement forms
    Allow tenants right of renewal on rental agreements

    And the Bill includes:

    Clause 6
    amends section 51, which relates to termination of tenancies by notice, to
    remove a landlord’s ability to give a reduced period of notice when the rental prem-
    ises are sold

    NZ First Housing policy includes:

    Encourage private investment in upgrading rental housing through the taxation system. Owners of rental houses could invest in specified qualifying home improvements and be able to expense them for income tax purposes in the year in which the expense is incurred, including home insulation, solar heating, heat pumps, HRV heating systems, wood pellet and other approved burners, earthquake strengthening, fire, food and other disaster protection.

    So, basically, good on the Labour Party for following the Green Party lead. And the GP have long been working on improving home insulation. In addition, the GP will make the default rental period 3 years, and will give tenants right of renewal of tenancies.

    I’ll also go and look at the rental policies for Mana and the Mp.

    • Carolyn_nth 1.1

      Mana Party housing policy:

      has a lot of focus on state housing, with income related rents.

      Private rentals

      Develop an income rent control system for the private sector
      Introduce a ‘warrant of fitness’ for all rental housing

      Māori Party Housing policy:

      Create a Minister for Māori and Pacific Housing so work to address the huge challenges whanau / fanau / ainga face, from homelessness to home ownership, can be prioritised.
      Develop a National Housing Strategy taking into account the specific rights and interests of Māori under Te Tiriti o Waitangi.
      Establish a Housing Sector Committee within the first 3 months of the next Parliament to co-design a 25-year government enabled housing strategy that addresses the entire housing crisis.

      Homelessness

      Require the government to set a target to eliminate homelessness by 2020.
      Address the over representation of Māori and Pacific whānau in severe housing deprivation.
      Build 90,000 affordable houses by 2022 (60,000 in Auckland and 30,000 in other areas where there is severe housing deprivation).

      Supporting tenants

      Improve the rights of renters.
      Freeze rents on all social housing stock and review every five years.
      Enforce compulsory annual warrant of fitness for all rental homes.
      Introduce a cap on rent increases for all sate-owned social housing stock and explore rent caps for private rentals.
      Review the bond refund system and create fairer and more streamlined processes to get bonds released sooner.

      • Siobhan 1.1.1

        Don’t forget Nationals policies!…getting tough on Meth Heads (ie at least 70% of tenants if what I read in the Herald is anything to go by) and, erm, helping their Corporate pals Sanitarium and Fonterra earn brownie points by feeding the children of the ‘meth heads’ breakfast.
        Though I would have thought getting Sanitarium to pay tax would pay for something a bit more substantial than weet-bix.. paninis for breakfast?.

        for anyone curious, here’s Nationals rather esoteric policies…

        https://www.national.org.nz/10_ways_national_is_helping_families_get_ahead

  2. Stuart Munro 2

    I really think that the cost of rentals needs to be addressed too. I know the idea that market rents should prevail is deeply entrenched, and that landlords and speculators will strongly oppose any regulation of cost. But letting them have it their way is part of what got us into this crisis. And one of the roles of government is to correct the imbalances of power between groups. I doubt the rental market will be greatly improved by any measure that does not address cost as a primary aim.

    • Carolyn_nth 2.1

      As far as I can see, Mana is the only Party with a policy of rent caps.

      • Stuart Munro 2.1.1

        Maybe we need to survey offshore solutions – since our own major parties are too… comfortable… to look seriously at resolving this.

    • UncookedSelachimorpha 2.2

      Bring in comprehensive rent control. Other countries have it, with very good outcomes.

      It is not like the gouging we encourage in NZ is leading to anything good – there is not a flurry of housebuilding driven by high rents etc.

  3. Ad 3

    There could not be a more direct on National’s big donors in the property management arms of Bayleys, Barfoot and Thompson, Augusta Group and the others laundered through the Waitemata Trust. The very definition of rent-seeking.

    Banning letting fees is seriously massive and will enrage those rich corporates against Labour.

    Labour better be ready.

    • Enough is Enough 3.1

      Good

      It shows Labour is finally doing something right if the rich are getting pissed off.

      Lets not appease these types, lets draw them out into the open and have them attack the socially just policies.

  4. Ethica 4

    Right wing headline lies from property industry and advertisers in the Dom Post today “Labour plan ‘may hurt renters’.”

    • tracey 4.1

      Rather than Labour offers landlords money from taxpayers to improve the value of their properties

      • Karen 4.1.1

        I have a niece with 5 kids living in a cold draughty rental. You can see the ground through the floorboards, the walls aren’t lined and the windows have gaps. She is on DPB and she lives there because it is all she can afford. If her landlord had to pay for insulation to meet new standards he’d put the rent up, if he can get a grant then maybe he won’t.

        I doubt whether $2000 of insulation makes any difference to property values, but it sure as hell can make a difference to people’s lives.

        • tracey 4.1.1.1

          I was being slightly tongue in cheek but yes insulated homes have greater value than not. For good reason Greens and now Labour are now proposing incentives to landlords to do the right thing. They could propose no such incentive and have large fines for the recalcitrants. But in some quarters this is still painted as so hard on the poor landlord. Pah!

          Can you imagine if we paid beneficiaries a 2000 incentive to go to job interviews 😉

          • Antoine 4.1.1.1.1

            Speaking as a landlord I thought the $2000 grant sounded quite helpful

            I understand you already must provide insulation under the law change coming in soon, so getting a grant to partially pay this would be beneficial

            A.

            • tracey 4.1.1.1.1.1

              I am glad cos it is very helpful and very generous. How will you feel being a beneficiary? 😉

              • Antoine

                My place is already fine, but no doubt other people will get the benefit

                A.

              • One Anonymous Bloke

                Just so long as he isn’t cohabiting with anyone he should be fine.

                Antoine, bring all your financial records to our offices and three different case workers will lose them for you.

                • Antoine

                  I am very much cohabiting with someone 🙂 🙂

                  > Antoine, bring all your financial records to our offices and three different case workers will lose them for you.

                  Thanks but I am quite capable of losing my own records without assistance!

                  A.

                  • One Anonymous Bloke

                    Your inadequate record keeping has been recorded for training purposes. You may hear from one of our investigators.

                  • tracey

                    And we will not tell you exactly when we are coming to check your compliance but if you are not there and we cannot inspect we can still fine you for not allowing us access

    • Et Tu Brute 4.2

      That is why Labour addresses both sides. Of course this will put upward pressure on rent. But then Labour will increase Working for Families and other tax credits to compensate. Letting Fees now are paid at the beginning of a tenancy. Under Labour, these will be paid by landlords or factored into management fees. So at most a 2% increase in rents, or say $10 a week for a $500 a week property. WFF will at the same time go up $50 or more a week above what National proposed.

      • Carolyn_nth 4.2.1

        So, for those of us that don’t get WFF, rent privately, and have been in the same rental for a few years (hence no more letting fee), will we still get the same rental increase as others?

        I think WFF is just another subsidy to landlords and employers, and contributes to pushing up rents across the board.

        • Et Tu Brute 4.2.1.1

          Yeah well it is upwards pressure. It doesn’t mean the end result will be evenly applied. But it does mean more vulnerable tenants won’t have to front up with the money at the start of their tenancy. And yes, the more money people have in hand the more they are willing to pay in rents, so prices go up.

    • The Chairman 4.3

      “Lies” you claim.

      Can you substantiate your claim?

  5. tracey 5

    Landlords getting a nice taxpayer subsidy to increase the value of their property.

  6. Antoine 6

    > Labour will extend notice periods to 90 days so that renters have the time they need to move their lives.

    Would be nice if landlords could also get 90 days notice from tenants

    A.

    • Carolyn_nth 6.1

      The problem for tenants is that it’s hard to find a new rental in a few weeks. I’ve sometimes ended up paying rent on 2 properties for a week or two. When I’ve found a new place to rent, generally, the landlord wants me to move in pretty quickly.

    • tracey 6.2

      Leases helped by fixing terms. I had a hell of a time breaking my lease from end of 1 Nov to 1 September even though I gave 2.5 months notice. I had to pay a week rent plus gst with no guarantee a new tenant would be found.

      I guess the problem with 3 mobths for tenants can be they get a job in another town and city and cannot wait 3 months or afford to pay in two places at once?

      • Antoine 6.2.1

        I was being snarky. I don’t really think tenants should have to give 3 months. I don’t particularly think landlords should either, but I guess it’s better than the more extreme scenario where the landlord simply can’t get the tenant to leave unless they stop paying rent etc.

        A.

        • One Anonymous Bloke 6.2.1.1

          Renters need security of tenure. I’m sure landlords will get over having to put up with reliable income from long-term tenants.

          Such a burden!

          • Antoine 6.2.1.1.1

            I’m sure landlords will get over the 90 day thing (with a certain amount of groaning and financial losses).

            The ‘can’t get the tenant to leave’ scenario would be worse. I guess I think about this in a simplistic way. Consider the scenario where the homeowner knows they are travelling for X months or Y years. They want to rent the house while they’re away and they want to move back in when they come back. If you can’t do a true fixed term tenancy, this becomes impossible.

            A.

            • Carolyn_nth 6.2.1.1.1.1

              As a renter, I think landlords should be looking on renting out properties as a business venture, not something for property owners to dabble in when it suits them.

              • Antoine

                What else are you supposed to do with a house you’re not going to be living in for a known period, other than rent it?

                A.

                • Carolyn_nth

                  An owner still has the property. Lucky them if they own property and can travel overseas as well. I don’t think that qualifies as being on the breadline.

                  Better still, there needs to be more properties available for long term rentals. Having more state houses for rent at income related rents, will ease the situation.

                  Then those people wanting to rent out their properties for short periods, will need to find short term tenants.

                  • Antoine

                    > Then those people wanting to rent out their properties for short periods, will need to find short term tenants.

                    Right, my point exactly, you need to be able to have short term tenancies by mutual agreement. This is possible under the status quo, also possible under Labour’s proposed changes, not possible under some other policies that have been proposed by Greens and TOP from time to time.

                    A.

                    • Carolyn_nth

                      Possibly – if they can’t find a short term tenant.

                      Renters need somewhere to live – most of them long term these days. So there need to be an adequate supply of long term rentals. Too many landlords are currently dabbling to suit themselves.

                    • Antoine

                      (Sorry Carolyn the Nth, I edited my comment while you were replying to it, hence the exchange looks a bit disjoint at this point.

                      Yes ‘an adequate supply of long term rentals’ is a fine thing, while noting that an adequate supply of short term rentals is also good, as sometimes people only plan to live somewhere for a short period.)

                    • Carolyn_nth

                      I think the GP policy is that the default position should be 3 years minimum. That doesn’t mean shorter tenancies wouldn’t happen.

                      If it’s just a few months, then it’s more like a holiday rental.

                      But really. I don’t think the main bulk of rental housing should be to suit owner occupiers’ travelling arrangements.

                      i know the situation on Waiheke has been that several landlords rent properties to people wanting somewhere to live. Then terminate the tenancy around Xmas, so the owner can go stay on Waiheke for their summer hols.

                    • Antoine

                      As opposed to e.g the TOP policy where the landlord simply cannot opt for a fixed term lease (http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/political/336605/give-up-on-home-ownership-strengthen-renters-rights-morgan)

                    • Carolyn_nth

                      the TOP policy does not say fixed term leases cannot happen. It follows the German model, which does allow fixed term rentals:

                      Click to access German%20Landlord%20Tenant%20Law.pdf

                    • Antoine

                      The German model allows fixed term leases, the TOP policy seems to depart from it in this respect. If it is described properly at http://www.stuff.co.nz/dominion-post/news/politics/95505946/Gareth-Morgans-TOP-rental-policy-would-make-it-far-harder-to-kick-out-tenants – “Lease terms would essentially be abolished, with the assumption that all tenancies are long-term.”

                      (I guess Stuff could have got it wrong)

                      Irregardless of what daft ideas Gareth may have, can we agree that “you need to be able to have short term tenancies by mutual agreement” and leave it at that?

                      A.

                    • Carolyn_nth

                      That Stuff article doesn’t say there wouyld be no fixed term leases under TOP policy. They are just indicating they would be relatively rare.

                      Seriously, this is a red herring. Rental housing should mainly be a long term thing. Landlords may have to leave their homes empty while overseas. Renting homes should not be something home owners dabble in when it suits them.

                      Edit: when renting a property, I don’t want somewhere with all the landlord’s stuff in it. I’d prefer totally empty where I can bring my own furniture, as I’ve found when renting overseas.

                    • Antoine

                      > Landlords may have to leave their homes empty while overseas.

                      Well, I’ll disagree that that would be a good outcome, and leave it there

                      A.

            • One Anonymous Bloke 6.2.1.1.1.2

              What an insurmountable problem! No wonder you’re hysterical with fear.

              No, wait, what if fixed term tenancy agreements were possible? Hallelujah!

              • Antoine

                That’s right, the problem I am discussing occurs neither under the status quo nor under the Labour policy, only under some other policies that have been discussed from time to time. So not a major at this point.

                A.

                • Carolyn_nth

                  I don’t see any policy which says fixed term leases cannot happen. But the aim of the policies of TOP and The Greens is to make most rentals be available for long term rentals. At the moment the assumption is that most tenants only want a place relatively short term.

  7. David Mac 7

    For good reason another house or 2 has become our superannuation policy of choice. 85% of rentals are owned by people that have 1 or 2 rentals. Over a decade or 2 no investment class can hold a candle to the advantages of gambling our non-working futures on a rental property or 2.

    This is not healthy for our society, swapping escalating assets between ourselves and all-comers. It doesn’t grow NZ, it’s treading water. But this is the way it is, you’re a mug if you’re not sticking your under the mattress money into a house.

    With almost everything we rent, car, canoe or motel unit we’re saddled with and accept onerous conditions. It seems fair that the owner sets the terms… “It’s mine, these are the rules”. Housing needs to be handled differently because it’s a fundamental need for life.

    Increasing the rights of non-owners to determine the future of these assets will of course diminish the rights of those that own them. They will become a less attractive Mum and Dad superannuation option and we will see increased corporate ownership and management of rental portfolios and an increase in overheads that will settle with the end users, the empowered tenants.

    Beyond improving conditions for tenants I see sliding in this direction as a positive move for our nation. Mums and Dads parking their money in replanting our felled Pinus Radiata makes a whole lot more sense than playing Monopoly with our houses. There is lots and lots of community owned housing in Sweden. Their well known world brands, Scania, Ikea, ABB, Husqvarna etc etc, that’s where Swedish Mums and Dads have their under the mattress Kronor parked, where they work. Not unlike Draco’s co-op model. Made sense to me.

    • Antoine 7.1

      > increased corporate ownership and management of rental portfolios and an increase in overheads that will settle with the end users, the empowered tenants

      Increased corporate ownership and higher rents, this doesn’t actually seem like a fantastic end game to me?

      A.

      • David Mac 7.1.1

        Hi Antoine, subsidising rent has become an intrinsic feature of life in NZ. By way of a full benefit, accom supp or WFF…If a govt were to pull the pin on it, tenants and rent dependant investors alike, our nation would fall over.

        Housing NZ have determined that to lead anything approaching a reasonable standard of life for the vast majority of us, a third of our income spent on housing is a reasonable expectation. I agree with this, I think most of us would.

        Yes, empowering tenants will push up costs for renters, this can be met by increasing govt paid rent subsidies that slowly push most of us towards that optimum 1/3 figure.

        How to pay for this? When Mum’s and Dads aren’t parking their rainy day money in do nothing houses and into flourishing Forests_R-Us, the purchasers of their logs can meet the increased housing subsidy requirements via the tax Forests-R-Us will pay.

        I’d take it a step further, an individual or couple could direct their rental subsidy into paying off a mortgage on their own place if that is what suited them.

  8. AsleepWhileWalking 8

    Instead of continuing subsidising rents that ratchet higher let’s just amortise (hope that’s the word)/roll up the subsidy projected and let people buy their own damn home.

    I’m sick of hearing landlord whining. You are supposedly running a business, therefore its your job to figure things out not the government’s to do it for you.

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • Green Party opposes RMA fast-track bill that cut corners on environmental safeguards and public cons...
    The Green Party has opposed the COVID-19 Recovery Fast-track Consenting Bill which shortcuts normal consenting processes under the Resource Management Act (RMA), reduces public participation and narrows environmental considerations. ...
    3 hours ago
  • Site of new freight hub revealed
    Hon Shane Jones, Minister of Regional Economic Development A regional freight hub for the lower North Island will be built just northeast of Palmerston North, Regional Development Minister Shane Jones has announced. The Government is investing $40 million through the Provincial Growth Fund to designate and buy land and design ...
    13 hours ago
  • Greens call for Guaranteed Minimum Income to alleviate skyrocketing debt with MSD
    Green Party Co-leader Marama Davidson is calling for the introduction of a Guaranteed Minimum Income to lift hundreds of thousands of people out of poverty and prevent more families entering into further debt with the Ministry of Social Development.  ...
    13 hours ago
  • Winston Peters: Facts matter when taxpayer money is on the line
    There has been renewed focus on New Zealand First acting as a handbrake on the Government after our decision to not support Auckland light rail. We are a handbrake for bad ideas, that is true, but our track record since 2017 has seen New Zealand First constructively also serve as an ...
    15 hours ago
  • Bill raising minimum residency requirement for NZ Super passes first reading
    Mark Patterson MP, New Zealand First List MP New Zealand First’s Fair Residency for Superannuation Bill passed its First Reading in Parliament today. The Bill makes a significant change to NZ Super by raising the minimum residency requirement from 10 to 20 years, after age 20. “Currently, a migrant of ...
    16 hours ago
  • Harsher penalties for assaults on first responders one step closer
    Darroch Ball MP, Spokesperson for Law and Order A New Zealand First member’s bill in the name of Darroch Ball introducing a six-month minimum prison sentence for assaults on first responders has passed its second reading in Parliament. The new offence of "injuring a first responder or corrections officer with ...
    1 day ago
  • Criminal Cases Review Commission delivers Coalition promise
    Fletcher Tabuteau MP, Deputy Leader of New Zealand First New Zealand First welcomes the launch of the new Criminal Cases Review Commission, gifted with the name from Waikato-Tainui - Te Kāhui Tātari Ture, announced in Hamilton today by Justice Minister Andrew Little. “New Zealand First has long believed in and ...
    1 day ago
  • Greens welcome huge new investment in sustainable projects
    The Green Party is celebrating over $800m in new funding for green projects, which will get people into jobs while solving New Zealand’s long-term challenges. ...
    2 days ago
  • New Zealand First demands answers from Meridian Energy
    Mark Patterson MP, Spokesperson for Primary Industries New Zealand First is appalled that Meridian seems to have been unnecessarily spilling water from its dams to drive up its profits."While New Zealanders have been coming together in some of our darkest hours, we don’t expect power gentailers to waste water and ...
    2 days ago
  • Getting New Zealand moving again: June 2020
    We wrapped up the first half of 2020 with a busy month, taking additional steps to support New Zealanders as we continue with our economic recovery. We rolled out targeted packages to support key industries like tourism and construction, helped create jobs in the environmental and agriculture sectors, and set ...
    2 days ago
  • Māori union leader appointed to Infrastructure Commission board
    Hon Shane Jones, Minister for Infrastructure Infrastructure Minister Shane Jones has welcomed the appointment of Maurice Davis and his deep infrastructure and construction experience to the board of the Infrastructure Commission. Mr Davis (Ngāti Maniapoto), is the seventh and final appointment to the board led by former Reserve Bank Governor ...
    3 days ago
  • Click-bait journalism at its worst
    Rt Hon Winston Peters, Leader of New Zealand First New Zealand’s click bait journalism is taking a turn for the worse, with yet another example of sensationalist, wilful-misrepresentation of the facts. “New Zealand First has worked constructively with its Coalition partner on hundreds of pieces of legislation and policy, and ...
    3 days ago
  • Green Party proposes transformational Poverty Action Plan
    The Green Party is today unveiling its Poverty Action Plan, which includes a Guaranteed Minimum Income to ensure people have enough to live with dignity.     ...
    4 days ago
  • PGF accelerates Rotorua projects
    Rt Hon Winston Peters, Deputy Prime Minister Fletcher Tabuteau MP, Under-Secretary for Regional Economic Development The Rotorua Museum redevelopment and Whakarewarewa and Tokorangi Forest projects will be accelerated thanks to a $2.09 million Provincial Growth Fund (PGF) boost, Deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters and Under-Secretary for Regional Economic Development Fletcher ...
    6 days ago
  • Week That Was: Getting people into jobs
    This week, we rolled out the next steps of our recovery plan, with new infrastructure investment, extra support for tourism operators, and a new programme to get Kiwis into agriculture careers. The global economic consequences of COVID-19 will continue to be a challenge, but we have a detailed plan to ...
    6 days ago
  • Coalition commitment establishing Mental Health Commission delivered
    Jenny Marcroft MP, Spokesperson for Health New Zealand First welcomes the passage of the Mental Health and Wellbeing Commission Bill through its final reading in Parliament today fulfilling a coalition agreement commitment. “This is an important step in saving the lives of New Zealanders and delivers a key coalition commitment ...
    6 days ago
  • Whakatāne gets a $2.5m ‘turbo boost’
    Whakatāne has been given a $2.5 million boost to speed up previously funded projects and create more than 450 jobs in the next decade. Of those, the equivalent of 160 full-time jobs could be delivered in the next six weeks. Deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters is in town to make ...
    7 days ago
  • $2.5m PGF funding to speed up economic recovery in Whakatāne
    Rt Hon Winston Peters, Deputy Prime Minister Fletcher Tabuteau MP, Under-Secretary for Regional Economic Development The Provincial Growth Fund (PGF) is investing $2.5 million to accelerate three infrastructure projects in Whakatāne, Deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters and Under-Secretary for Regional Economic Development Fletcher Tabuteau announced today. “This package is about ...
    7 days ago
  • Shane Jones calls out those holding drought-stricken Auckland ‘to ransom’ over water
    Infrastructure Minister Shane Jones is throwing his weight behind a bid by the Auckland Council to fast-track the more than doubling of the city's water allowance from the Waikato River. And he's coming out strongly against anyone who plans on getting in the way of this campaign. "It is my ...
    7 days ago
  • Another Green win as climate change considerations inserted into the RMA
    The Green Party is thrilled to see changes to the Resource Management Act (RMA) that mean consents for large projects can be declined if they will have significant climate change implications that are inconsistent with the Zero Carbon Act and Aotearoa New Zealand’s Paris Agreement obligations.  ...
    1 week ago
  • New Navy vessel Aotearoa to arrive in New Zealand
    Hon Ron Mark, Minister of Defence The Royal New Zealand Navy’s new ship, Aotearoa, set sail for New Zealand on 10 June from the Republic of Korea, and is due to arrive in Auckland tomorrow, announced Minister of Defence Ron Mark. “Aotearoa is the Royal New Zealand Navy’s new fleet ...
    1 week ago
  • Racing Industry Bill passes third reading
    Rt Hon Winston Peters, Deputy Prime Minister, Minister for Racing Racing Minister Winston Peters has today welcomed the Racing Industry Bill passing its third reading, creating the legislative framework for revitalising the racing industry while limiting the need for future government intervention. “For too long our domestic racing industry has ...
    1 week ago
  • Green Party seek amendment to ensure all prisoners can vote
    The Green Party has today put forward an amendment to the Electoral (Registration of Sentenced Prisoners) Amendment Bill to ensure all people in prisons can vote in general elections. ...
    1 week ago
  • Green Party welcomes new approach to delivering light rail
    The Green Party welcomes the decision to not proceed with Public Public Investment (PPI) delivery of Auckland’s light rail project and to instead run the process through the public service. ...
    1 week ago
  • New Zealand First welcomes PGF investment in Wairarapa Water
    Hon Ron Mark, New Zealand First List MP based in the Wairarapa New Zealand First List MP Hon Ron Mark welcomes the announcement of Provincial Growth Funding investment of $1.4 million to help secure the Wairarapa’s water supply. The funding boost will allow the Greater Wellington Regional Council (GWRC), and ...
    1 week ago
  • New Zealand First MP Mark Patterson selected as candidate for Taieri
    New Zealand First list MP Mark Patterson has been selected to represent the party in the newly formed Taieri electorate at the upcoming election. Mr Patterson, his wife Jude and two daughters farm sheep and beef at Lawrence and Waitahuna. He previously stood in the Clutha-Southland electorate however boundary changes ...
    1 week ago
  • Ground-breaking on NZ Post depot
    Hon Shane Jones, Associate Minister for State Owned Enterprises A new ‘super depot’ to be built for NZ Post in Wellington will create around 350 jobs during construction, Associate Minister for State Owned Enterprises Shane Jones says. Shane Jones today attended a ground-breaking and blessing ceremony for the parcel-processing depot ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Week That Was: Putting our economic plan into action
    Our strong economic management prior to COVID-19 - with surpluses, low debt and near-record-low unemployment - put us in a good position to weather the impact of the virus and start to rebuild our economy much earlier than many other countries. Now we're putting our plan to recover and rebuild ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Fleeing drivers hit new record-high yet again
    Darroch Ball MP, New Zealand First Spokesperson for Law and Order Recently released Police fleeing driver statistics have shown yet another increase in incidents with another record-high in the latest quarter. “This new quarterly record-high is the latest in a string of record-high numbers since 2014.  The data shows incidents ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Fletcher Tabuteau selected as candidate for Rotorua
    New Zealand First MP Fletcher Tabuteau is pleased to be confirmed today as the party’s candidate for the Rotorua electorate. Speaking at the Rotorua AGM for New Zealand First, Mr Tabuteau said this is an election that is incredibly important for the people of Rotorua. “The founding principles of New ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Greens call for Government office to address Rainbow issues following Human Rights Commission report
    The Human Rights Commission’s PRISM report on the issues impacting people based on their sexual orientation, gender identity and expression, and sex characteristics (SOGIESC) provides an excellent programme of work for future governments to follow, say the Greens. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Winston Peters continues push for trans-Tasman travel as military take control of operations
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters said the trans-Tasman bubble had not been jeopardised after a border botch-up resulted in New Zealand having two active cases of COVID-19. On Friday, Mr Peters told RNZ's Morning Report he had heard from Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison that borders for trans-Tasman travel would open by ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Winston Peters on the Government’s Covid-19 border blunder
    Deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters said today he was pleased the army was now running the quarantine and isolation process - up until now it has been the Ministry of Health. Peters told Newstalk ZB's Mike Hosking that the army knew how to introduce and follow protocols and instil discipline. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • New Zealand First’s Ron Mark confirms bid for the Wairarapa seat
    Hon Ron Mark, New Zealand First List MP based in the Wairarapa New Zealand First MP and Minister for Defence and Veteran’s Affairs Ron Mark has confirmed his bid for the Wairarapa seat.“The Coalition Government has done a lot of good work throughout the Wairarapa, but many constituents have told ...
    2 weeks ago
  • New Zealand First welcomes second tranche of candidates
    New Zealand First is pleased to release the names of its next tranche of candidates for the 2020 election. We’re proud to announce these hardworking New Zealanders that have put their hand up to fight for a commonsense and resilient future.Jamie Arbuckle – Kaikoura Mark Arneil – Christchurch Central Jackie ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Joint effort under way to repatriate stranded Vanuatu nationals
    Rt Hon Winston Peters, Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Foreign Affairs Hon Ron Mark, Minister of Defence A massive joint effort between New Zealand Government agencies, employers, and the Vanuatu Government is underway to repatriate over 1000 Vanuatu nationals stranded in New Zealand, Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters and Defence Minister Ron ...
    2 weeks ago
  • $40m for regional apprenticeships
    Hon Shane Jones, Minister of Regional Economic Development Reprioritised funding of $40 million from the Provincial Growth Fund will support up to 1000 regional apprenticeships, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones said today. The Regional Apprenticeship Initiative is part of the wider Apprenticeship Boost announced by Education Minister Chris Hipkins ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Greens welcome new ACC zero carbon plans, call for ruling out any future fossil fuel investment
    The Green Party welcomes the ACC’s announcement to achieve net zero carbon emissions by 2050 but emphasises the need to go further, and faster to truly meet the climate change challenge. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Farmers pleased with NZ First amendments to firearms bill
    Farmers are rejoicing after Labour agreed to an amendment pushed by New Zealand First in the firearms bill that will allow the use of restricted guns for pest control.  Concessions on gun control mean farmers will be able to apply for a licence to use restricted firearms for pest control. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • New Zealand launches free trade talks with the UK
    New Zealand has formally launched free trade negotiations with the United Kingdom, with hopes a swift deal could assist with the country's post-Covid recovery. The two countries announced the start of FTA talks on Wednesday afternoon, offering a new avenue for trade progress. In a statement announcing the start of ...
    2 weeks ago

  • Fast-track consenting law boosts jobs and economic recovery
    The law to boost the economic recovery from the impact of COVID-19 by speeding up resource consenting on selected projects has passed its second and third readings in the House today. “Accelerating nationwide projects and activities by government, iwi and the private sector will help deliver faster economic recovery and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 hours ago
  • Whanganui Port gets PGF boost
    Five port-related projects in Whanganui will receive a $26.75 million Provincial Growth Fund investment to support local economic recovery and create new opportunities for growth, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones announced today. “This is a significant investment that will support the redevelopment of the Whanganui Port, a project governed ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    10 hours ago
  • More support for Sarjeant Gallery
    Whanganui’s Sarjeant Gallery will receive an investment of up to $12 million administered by the Provincial Growth Fund to support its redevelopment, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones announced today. The project is included in a $3 billion infrastructure pipeline announced by Finance Minister Grant Robertson and Shane Jones yesterday. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    10 hours ago
  • Funding for training and upskilling
    The Provincial Growth Fund is investing nearly $2.5 million into three Te Ara Mahi programmes to support Manawatū-Whanganui jobseekers and employees to quickly train and upskill, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones announced today. “Up to 154 local people will be supported into employment within the first year by these ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    12 hours ago
  • Statement from the Minister of Health Dr David Clark
      This morning I have formally tendered my resignation as Minister of Health, which was accepted by the Prime Minister. Serving as Minister of Health has been an absolute privilege – particularly through these extraordinary last few months. It’s no secret that Health is a challenging portfolio. I have given ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    14 hours ago
  • Scholarship placements for agricultural emissions scientists doubles
    Scholarships for 57 early-career agricultural emissions scientists from 20 developing countries is another example of New Zealand’s international leadership in primary sector sustainability, says Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor. Mr O’Connor, announcing the scholarships today, says hundreds of applications were received for this fourth round of the CLIFF-GRADS programme (Climate, Food ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    15 hours ago
  • Funding for Foxton regeneration
    A project to help rejuvenate the Horowhenua town of Foxton will receive a Provincial Growth Fund investment of $3.86 million, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones announced today. “This funding for the Foxton Regeneration project will be used to make the well-known holiday town even more attractive for visitors and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    15 hours ago
  • Plan to improve protection of moa bones
    Moa bones and other sub-fossil remains of extinct species are set to have improved protection with proposals to prevent the trade in extinct species announced the Minister of Conservation Eugenie Sage today. “We have lost too many of our native species, but these lost species, such as moa, remain an ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    16 hours ago
  • Free lunches served up to thousands of school children in the South Island
    The Government’s free and healthy school lunches programme moves south for the first time creating jobs for around 30 people in Otago and Southland. “Eighteen schools with 3000 students are joining the programme – 11 have already begun serving lunches, and seven are preparing to start during Term 3. This is ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    19 hours ago
  • Screen Sector recovery package protects jobs, boosts investment
    Thousands of Kiwi jobs and investment in New Zealand productions will be protected through a screen sector support package announced today by Associate Minister for Arts Culture and Heritage Carmel Sepuloni, Minister for Economic Development Phil Twyford and Minister for Broadcasting Kris Faafoi. The package also includes investment in broadcasting ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • New fund to help save local events and jobs
    The Government has established a new $10 million fund for the domestic events sector to help save jobs and protect incomes as it recovers from the impacts of COVID-19, Minister of Economic Development Phil Twyford announced today. This funding from Budget 2020 follows talks with the event sector designed to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Bill to improve fuel market competition
    The Government has taken another step in its commitment to making sure New Zealanders get a fairer deal at the petrol pump with the introduction of legislation to improve competition in the retail fuel market, says Energy and Resources Minister Megan Woods. “The fuel market study that this Government ordered ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • New Zealand joins global facility for pre-purchase of COVID-19 Vaccine
    New Zealand has joined a global initiative that aims to enable all countries to access a safe and effective Covid-19 vaccine, Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters announced today. The COVAX Facility was recently launched by Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance. The Alliance includes the World Health Organization, UNICEF, the World Bank ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Right to legal representation in Family Court restored today
    From today new legislation takes effect to both restore the right to legal representation at the start of a Care of Children (CoCA) dispute in the Family Court, and allow parties to those proceedings to access legal aid where eligible. During a visit to the Family Court in Auckland today, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Transitioning to a fully-qualified home-based ECE workforce
    Home-based early childhood education (ECE) subsidised by the government will transition to a fully qualified workforce by 2025 to ensure better and more consistent quality, Education Minister Chris Hipkins announced today. “Quality early learning helps provide children with a strong foundation for their future,” Chris Hipkins said. From 1 January ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Criminal Cases Review Commission gets to work
    The new Criminal Cases Review Commission | Te Kāhui Tātari Ture (CCRC) has started work and can now independently investigate claimed miscarriages of justice. “Even though we have appeal rights and safeguards against unsafe convictions, from time to time our justice system does get things wrong. The design of the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Speech by the Minister of Defence to the New Zealand Institute of International Affairs
    E ngā mana, e ngā reo, e ngā karangatanga maha, tēnā koutou Ki a koutou Te Āti Awa, Taranaki Whānui, Ngāti Toa Rangatira, ngā mana whenua o te rohe nei, tēnā koutou Ko Te Whare Wānanga o Aotearoa ki ngā take o te Ao (NZIIA), Ko te Rōpū Tohu Tono ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Six months with baby and $20 more a week for new parents
    The Government’s increase to paid parental leave kicks in today with another 4 weeks taking New Zealand up to a full 6 months (26 weeks, up from 22 weeks) leave for new parents, and the maximum weekly payment will increase by $20pw, Workplace Relations and Safety Minister Iain Lees-Galloway says. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Infrastructure investment to create jobs, kick-start COVID rebuild
    A new package of infrastructure investments will help kick-start the post-COVID rebuild by creating more than 20,000 jobs and unlocking more than $5 billion of projects up and down New Zealand. Finance Minister Grant Robertson and Infrastructure Minister Shane Jones today outlined how the $3 billion infrastructure fund in the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Statement on passage of national security law for Hong Kong
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters today expressed the New Zealand Government’s deep disappointment at the passage by China’s National People’s Congress Standing Committee of a national security law for Hong Kong. “New Zealand has consistently emphasised its serious concern about the imposition of this legislation on Hong Kong without inclusive ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • July 1 marks progress for workers, families
    More jobs and more family time with newborns are the centrepiece of a suite of Government initiatives coming into effect today. July 1 is a milestone day for the Government as a host of key policies take effect, demonstrating the critical areas where progress has been made. “The Coalition Government ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Auckland water consent referred to Board of Inquiry
    Environment Minister David Parker has today “called in” Auckland’s application to the Waikato Regional Council to take an extra 200 million litres of water a day from the lower reaches of the Waikato River for Auckland drinking water and other municipal uses.  The call-in means the application has been referred ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • New Zealand to host virtual APEC in 2021
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters and Trade and Export Growth Minister David Parker announced today that New Zealand’s hosting of APEC in 2021 will go ahead using virtual digital platforms. Mr Peters said the global disruption caused by COVID-19, including resultant border restrictions, had been the major factor in the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Matakana Link Road construction kicks off and drives jobs
    The start of construction on a new link road between Matakana Road and State Highway 1 will create jobs and support the significant population growth expected in the Warkworth area, Transport Minister Phil Twyford and Mayor Phil Goff announced today. Transport Minister Phil Twyford said construction of the Matakana Link ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • PPE supplies secured as COVID-19 response focuses on border
    The Government is prioritising its latest investment in PPE for frontline health workers, including staff at managed isolation and quarantine facilities, Health Minister David Clark says. “With no community transmission of COVID-19 our response now has a firm focus on keeping our border safe and secure. “We must ensure that ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • PGF funding for Parihaka settlement
    The Parihaka Papakāinga Trust in Taranaki will receive up to $14 million for a new visitor centre and other improvements at the historic settlement that will boost the local economy and provide much-needed jobs, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones and Minister for Treaty of Waitangi Negotiations Andrew Little have ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Protections for workers in triangular employment
    Protections for workers who are employees of one employer but working under the direction of another business or organisation have come into force, closing a gap in legislation that  made the personal grievance process inaccessible for some workers, says Workplace Relations Minister Iain Lees-Galloway. “This Government is working hard to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Government strengthens managed isolation system
    A range of improvements are already underway to address issues identified in the rapid review of the Managed Isolation and Quarantine system released today, Housing Minister Megan Woods said. The review was commissioned just over a week ago to identify and understand current and emerging risks to ensure the end-to-end ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Whakatāne to go predator free with Government backing Ngāti Awa led efforts
    The important brown kiwi habitat around Whakatāne will receive added protection through an Iwi-led predator free project announced by Minister of Conservation Eugenie Sage and Under Secretary for Regional Economic Development Fletcher Tabuteau. “The Government is investing nearly $5 million into Te Rūnanga o Ngāti Awa’s environmental projects with $2.5 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Growing Goodwood: Expanding wood waste recycling plant in Bay of Plenty, Waikato
    An extra 4,000 tonnes of offcuts and scraps of untreated wood per year will soon be able to be recycled into useful products such as horticultural and garden mulch, playground safety surfacing and animal bedding as a result of a $660,000 investment from the Waste Minimisation Fund, Associate Environment Minister ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Scott Watson’s convictions to be referred to Court of Appeal
    The Governor-General has referred Scott Watson’s convictions for murder back to the Court of Appeal, Justice Minister Andrew Little announced today. Mr Watson was convicted in 1999 of the murders of Ben Smart and Olivia Hope. His appeal to the Court of Appeal in 2000 was unsuccessful, as was his ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Protecting Kiwis with stronger financial supervision
    A new five-year funding agreement for the Reserve Bank will mean it can boost its work to protect New Zealanders’ finances, Finance Minister Grant Robertson says. “New Zealand has a strong and stable financial system. Financial stability is an area that we are not prepared to cut corners for, particularly ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Forgotten funds and missing money
    A law change has been introduced to make it easier for forgotten funds in institutional accounts to be returned more easily to their rightful owners. Revenue Minister Stuart Nash has introduced an amendment to the Unclaimed Money Act 1971. It will update the rules controlling forgotten sums of money held ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Government delivers on mental health commitment
    The Government is delivering on election commitments and a key recommendation of He Ara Oranga: Report of the Government Inquiry into Mental Health and Addiction with the establishment of a permanent independent Mental Health and Wellbeing Commission, Health Minister Dr David Clark says. Legislation enabling the establishment of the fully ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • New Zealand privacy law modernised
    A Bill to replace New Zealand’s Privacy Act passed its third reading in Parliament today, Justice Minister Andrew Little has announced. “The protections in the Privacy Bill are vitally important. The key purpose of the reforms is to promote and protect people’s privacy and give them confidence that their personal ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Tourism operators provided extra support
    Extra support is being provided to tourism businesses operating on public conservation land announced Tourism Minister Kelvin Davis and Conservation Minister Eugenie Sage today.  The Government is providing $25m worth of support to tourism operators impacted by COVID-19, with a decision to waive most Department of Conservation tourism related concession ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Queenstown infrastructure package to bolster local economy
    A central Government partnership with Queenstown will help unlock around $300 million of projects in the township and create about 320 direct jobs, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has announced today. The Government will contribute $85 million to the Queenstown Town Centre ($35m) project and Stage One of the Queenstown Arterials ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Key appointments to ensure high quality healthcare for New Zealanders
    Health Minister Dr David Clark welcomes the appointment of Auckland coroner Morag McDowell to the role of Health and Disability Commissioner. He is also pleased his appointments to the inaugural Paramedic Council were confirmed by gazette this week. The new Health and Disability Commissioner Ms McDowell will commence the role ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Whakatāne Māori food producers receive $2.1m PGF boost
    The Provincial Growth Fund is investing $2.1 million in a blueberry orchard initiative, Deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters and Under-Secretary for Regional Economic Development Fletcher Tabuteau announced today. “The Meihana Koata Trust will receive a loan from the PGF’s Whenua Māori allocation to develop an 18.8 hectare blueberry orchard on ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • PGF investment in Rewa’s Village
    A well-known Māori tourism in Northland will receive $1.25 million from the Provincial Growth Fund for much-needed redevelopment, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones says. Te Rūnanga o Ngāti Rēhia Charitable Trust will use the funding to upgrade Te Pā Kāinga o Rewa, or Rewa’s Village, in Kerikeri. The long-established ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago