Let them eat cake

Written By: - Date published: 8:51 am, March 5th, 2024 - 73 comments
Categories: act, david seymour, education, national, national/act government, nicola willis, poverty, same old national - Tags:

Three months ago Nicola Willis was talking about fiscal cliffs. These were areas of activity which the previous Government had funded but not into the distant future. She presented it as some sort of conspiracy to not continue with beneficial activities when the reality is that it is what you do with new programmes to make sure they are worth while.

Free School lunches was one such activity. The last Government had launched the program, funded it for a period but wanted to review and check to see how it was going. During the election campaign it had committed to continuing with the funding.

Nicola Willis attacked the pause and made reassuring noises that National would continue to fund the policy. Or at least it did not campaign on cutting it.

From Thomas Coughan at the Herald in November last year:

There is a grey area, however, when the Government gives time-limited funding to something that could be funded in perpetuity – especially if the Government doesn’t go to great lengths to flag the fact that the funding is only temporary.

The lunches in schools programme falls into this category. The former Government could have chosen to fund this programme into the future, but it chose not to, funding it only for a discrete period of time. The current round of funding ends at the end of the current school year. National said it will renew that money, although in its coalition agreement with Act it said it would try to improve the cost-effectiveness of the programme.

Leaving it up to Seymour will mean that the funding will be cut. And so it came to pass.

From Radio New Zealand yesterday:

Associate Education Minister David Seymour said 10,000 lunches were wasted each day and there was no hard evidence the programme, which cost about $325 million annually, improved school attendance or achievement.

On Monday, he told Checkpoint he was looking to cut funding for the programme by up to half.

The figure of 10,000 daily wastage sounds large but not when you consider that a million free school lunches are delivered each week. And it has been around for a while. As I said previously:

The shock horror headline was that 10,000 school lunches were being wasted every day.  This is an impressive number but when you think that a million school lunches are prepared each week this accounts for 5% of all prepared lunches.  If there is a restaurant out there which has less than 5% wastage I would be pleased to know about them.

And unfortunately for Seymour there was hard evidence showing that the scheme was an outstanding success. Again from Radio New Zealand:

Dr Pippa McKelvie-Sebileau has been researching the effectiveness of the programme, particularly in Hawke’s Bay.

She said the difference in achievement when students missed meals was “pretty stark”, even accounting for other factors associated with hunger, like socioeconomic deprivation.

As well as the Pisa study, data from the Trends in International Maths and Science study showed “the same enormous differences” in achievement between students with enough food and those who went hungry, McKelvie-Sebileau said.

The Treasury report which the Government has referred to was carried out in 2021 “during a really bizarre time” – the aftermath of the Covid-19 lockdowns, when “it was really hard to get students into schools” according to Dr McKelvie-Sebileau.

Act has always had a thing about poor people and expects them to be able to support themselves no matter how bad things get.

And there is more than a hint of class prejudice. This is what Seymour said about the policy in 2023:

“The vast majority of parents can take care of their own kids. Politicians shouldn’t be taking over the job of parents. It sends the wrong message and undermines personal responsibility.

“No one will ever spend taxpayer’s money as carefully as their own.

Stand by while a perfectly sensible policy is cut. So that landlords can get tax cuts.

A French Princess famously said “let them eat cake” to complaints by French pesants that could not afford bread. The French Revolution happened shortly after that.

Seymour’s comments and proposals show all the subtlety and understanding of the French aristocracy.

73 comments on “Let them eat cake ”

  1. Mr Nobody 1

    If this program is such a success why:

    1) Are the attendance rates so poor, especially in lower socioeconomic areas where "food availability" is supposedly so extreme?

    2) Again as this program is targeting these lower socioeconomic areas where there are large dependency rates on benefits are me not in effect paying for this twice? Which despite all the increases that previous governments have made to benefits has not made a difference?

    3) Why did the previous Government not provide long term funding for this program?

    • That_guy 1.1

      1) We do not know that attendance rates are poor because the study on attendance rates was conducted during a very unusual time and cannot possibly be described as the final word on the matter, unless you are a statistical illiterate or David Seymour.

      While the Treasury study did not show an improvement in attendance in students receiving free school lunches, it was carried out in 2021 "during a really bizarre time" – the aftermath of the Covid-19 lockdowns, when "it was really hard to get students into schools", she said.

      2) Because the simple fact is: it's incredibly expensive to provide a healthy diet to a family and benefits do not cover it. https://www.heartfoundation.org.nz/about-us/news/blogs/the-cost-of-a-healthy-diet

      A one-income family with two children living on the minimum wage needs to spend one-third of their net income to purchase a no-frills healthy diet. For a similar family on the unemployment benefit, it costs more than half their net income to have a basic healthy diet. Overall, families on a low income need to spend between 23-52% of net income and 43-89% once rent is deducted to purchase a ‘basic’ healthy diet.

      3) Good question.

      • Mr Nobody 1.1.1

        1) While Treasury may not have studied it the MOE has and based on the reports of the latest data from Term 2 last year its crap with 53% of kids not attending school reguarly (see link to below article).

        https://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/school-attendance-more-than-half-of-students-not-regularly-attending-in-term-2-2023/QDSV6SPBWJECJC2AV4PDM23RQM/

        2) I agree, but considering the amount of money that benefits have increased by it is clear jo matter what amount of money is paid some parents still will jot feed their kids. In which case if they won't should the state be reducing their benefits and doing it themselves to ensure the kids are fed or prosecuting the parents for neglect.

        I personally don't care if the lunch program continues and happy if taxes/benefits increase accordingly as long as it a) results in kids being feed and not hungry (though if things are that bad at home how do they survive during the holidays) and b) Attendance increases accordingly, otherwise the program in my opinion is failing its purpose.

        • Nic the NZer 1.1.1.1

          We might convert the very sensitive measure to a more meaningful effective class time attended. That's worth considering in order not to blow things well out of proportion.

          Assuming that 53% are still attending 8 of their 10 days, then 90% of possible school attendance is still occurring. In fact the 53% figure is not very different to the same figure pre-covid and might well just be down to some kids being home sick from school fairly regularly (maybe some parents have become a bit more sensitive to conscientious keeping kids home with illness over the last few years). I don't think there is enough detail on the motivations of parents with kids not attending to attribute those numbers to particular motivations.

          • Mr Nobody 1.1.1.1.1

            Potentially though it could be worse. I know from my own family's school aged kids that it's common for schools these days to have quiet hubs where kids can go if stressed/not coping etc.

            As a result Kids can go to these places instead of classes until they feel able to return to class during which many are instead watching tik tok, YouTube or streaming services like Disney+ or Netflix.

            So while a kid might be attending school it doesn't necessarily mean they are attending class and learning.

            • Nic the NZer 1.1.1.1.1.1

              What is the possible relevance of this to the original statistics you raised?

              • Mr Nobody

                Because if as you suggest we were to convert the statistics to "meaningful class time" you then need to determine

                A) What exactly is meaningful class time eg Is for example attending a daily home class where school notices etc are usually distributed, etc?

                B) How much meaningful class time are kids actually participating in.

                • Nic the NZer

                  Lol. Please do share with the MoE when you have a working predictive model of how much education kids are getting out of their schooling.

                  I also think you need to have a strong ongoing commentary on education with your choice of school regarding timeout practices. They just love engaged parents and you will probably get some kind of reputation with them no doubt.

                • Nic the NZer

                  My apologies, I've been a bit mean to your comments and it was all my fault. I accidentally wrote something which could be miss interpreted and you got the wrong idea.

                  "We might convert the very sensitive measure to a more meaningful effective class time attended", this just means considering how much time kids are actually in class. I don't think its possible to measure how much of that time is actually being effective at all. Just that the statistic of 53% is a more sensitive statistical measure of high attendance rate students. Even the lowest attendance rate students some are in class up to 70% of school time. Clearly when I highlighted we don't even know why students are not in attendance (including responsibly taking absence due to illness, often while still studying online actually), I needed to take into account the lowest common denominator of people who might read this. I needed to take this into account when describing how numbers around 50% is not a number applying to any student attendance individually or collectively.

        • That_guy 1.1.1.2

          2) I agree, but considering the amount of money that benefits have increased by it is clear jo matter what amount of money is paid some parents still will jot feed their kids. In which case if they won't should the state be reducing their benefits and doing it themselves to ensure the kids are fed or prosecuting the parents for neglect.

          I'm not going to pretend I have a magic solution but I fundamentally disagree with the idea that we should remove schemes explicitly targeted at kids simply because their parents are shit.

          Regarding attendance, why would attendance improve if you take away one of the benefits of school attendance?

          • Mr Nobody 1.1.1.2.1

            I agree. However what the statistics indicate is that despite all the money and effort that had been poured into this scheme that school attendance or achievement has significantly improved.

            That doesn't mean kids aren't going hungry or that the goals aren't worthwhile it simply means the current approach isn't the answer or at least the whole answer and it should be addressed.

            Personally I think it has been over complicated and should be simplifed to target only the specific kids in need vs the entire school.

            • UncookedSelachimorpha 1.1.1.2.1.1

              "Personally I think it has been over complicated and should be simplifed to target only the specific kids in need vs the entire school."

              Avoiding the social stigma of being the only kids who need it, is hugely important.

        • Descendant Of Smith 1.1.1.3

          So you refer to an article which specifically says this:

          The Ministry of Education said the incidence of Covid and typical winter illnesses continued to be associated with an increase in medical absences compared to 2019 (pre-Covid) and was the main driver of non-attendance in term 2 this year.

          but choose to blame bad parenting for non attendance. Fuck you're a tosser.

          • Mr Nobody 1.1.1.3.1

            I'm sorry that is your take away and feel the need to resort to name calling.

            I have come here and engaged in civil and open conversation. I don't believe my opinion is the only one or that it is necessarily correct in which case I am more than happy to hear alternative ones so that it may be altered, shaped and refined.

            However I can't be bothered with meaningless personal attacks so will leave you to your echo chamber until I grow bored and try again.

            • That_guy 1.1.1.3.1.1

              I personally don’t mind you being here and I value your contribution, even though I think you’re mostly wrong or have priorities I don’t share.

              People who ask questions force us to refine and reexamine our arguments. The ability to critically analyse our own ideas used to be what separated the right from the left. I’d like those days to return.

            • Descendant Of Smith 1.1.1.3.1.2

              You cited an article as evidence that your ongoing proposition that bad parents were to blame for poor attendance at school which in fact said the opposite – that increased illness was responsible and indeed goes on further to clearly infer that parents are doing the right thing ie the attendance drop is due to good student behaviour and good parenting.

              “This suggests that students and their parents continue to follow Ministry of Health advice, ie, for students to stay home if unwell,” the ministry said.

              Your faux apology to say it's my fault, your continual use of superlatives, your seeming politeness (while at the same time drawing a completely apposite conclusion from the evidence you provide) are all the things that right wing passive aggressives do all the time. I took bets with myself that you would respond exactly in the way you did – feign offense and not address the fact that the article you cited didn't put any blame on parents and was supportive of them not sending their kids to school.

              We are dealing with three seasonal outbreaks now instead of two – cold virus, flu virus and COVID virus. Anyone with even a small amount of intellectual honesty would accept that there will be increased absences as a result.

              This stuff isn't even rocket science.

            • Incognito 1.1.1.3.1.3

              You’re pretending to be a wronged victim but I’m not buying it from the tone & content of your commentary here, which is more alike a thin-skinned bully who likes to dish it out but cannot handle a robust response.

              In fact, when it gets too hot for you here, you do a runner in a huff & puff, after your typical spray & walk-away comments. This is not the first time (https://thestandard.org.nz/open-mike-25-11-2023/#comment-1978097) and you seem to think that you can just come & go here on your own terms before a Mod boots you off the reserve. Each time it will take less time to get bored with you – if you don’t like ‘our echo chamber’ then don’t come here and/or stay away if you cannot lift your game.

      • Mr Nobody 1.1.2

        1) While Treasury may not have studied it the MOE has and based on the reports of the latest data from Term 2 last year its crap with 53% of kids not attending school reguarly (see link to below article).

        https://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/school-attendance-more-than-half-of-students-not-regularly-attending-in-term-2-2023/QDSV6SPBWJECJC2AV4PDM23RQM/

        2) I agree, but considering the amount of money that benefits have increased by it is clear jo matter what amount of money is paid some parents still will jot feed their kids. In which case if they won't should the state be reducing their benefits and doing it themselves to ensure the kids are fed or prosecuting the parents for neglect.

        I personally don't care if the lunch program continues and happy if taxes/benefits increase accordingly as long as it a) results in kids being feed and not hungry (though if things are that bad at home how do they survive during the holidays) and b) Attendence increases accordingly, otherwise the program in my opinion is failing its purpose.

        • Drowsy M. Kram 1.1.2.1

          School attendance data for term 3 (2023) is available. Regular (>90%) attendance took a big (pandemic-related?) hit in 2022, and has not recovered, although the percentage of students with at least 70% attendance is relatively stable from 2019 – 2023 [92.7%, 91.6%, 91.2%, 87.1%, 87.7%].

          Factors affecting school attendance are likely quite complex – if poverty is a contributor, then how to 'motivate' impoverished Kiwi kids to attend school?

          Why poverty in New Zealand is everyone's concern
          Liang describes poverty as a "heritable condition" that perpetuates and amplifies through generations: "It is also not hard to see how individual poverty flows into communities and society, with downstream effects on economics, crime and health, as well as many other systems. Loosen one strand and everything else unravels."

          A Kete Half Empty
          Poverty is your problem, it is everyone's problem, not just those who are in poverty. – Rebecca, a child from Te Puru

        • UncookedSelachimorpha 1.1.2.2

          " but considering the amount of money that benefits have increased by it is clear jo matter what amount of money is paid some parents still will jot feed their kids. In which case if they won't should the state be reducing their benefits and doing it themselves to ensure the kids are fed or prosecuting the parents for neglect."

          Many poor parents try extremely hard to look after their kids, but yes, there are some absolutely negligent and appalling parents also (I've had direct exposure to quite a few).

          Often the solution to poverty is (drum roll….) to throw money at the problem. The situation with useless parents is not made better by reducing the available resources even further. In fact, vastly more resources are needed in precisely those situations (of one sort or another) – and the political forces wanting to cut lunches etc show no sign of wanting to add any such resources.

          It may seem like some waste – but remember, every one of these needy families and kids are in the poorest 50% of New Zealanders – and that part of the population owns only 3% of the nation's wealth. So they haven't been very effective at bleeding everyone else dry, with only 3%.

          Of course, the existing wealth of our single richest citizen could pay for the entire lunch program as-is, for the entire country, for 50 years – and he would still have enough money left to live a lifestyle far beyond that imaginable by most New Zealanders. Of course, he could almost certainly do it with just a portion of the annual capital return on his wealth – indefinitely, while his wealth still increased. Put another way, a 2% wealth tax on that one person would pay for it, indefinitely. That end of town gets little scrutiny, compared to someone living on a desperate benefit.

    • Descendant Of Smith 1.2

      Which despite all the increases that previous governments have made to benefits has not made a difference?

      Sadly rapacious landlords took it all and more in many cases.

      • Mr Nobody 1.2.1

        In some case I agree that could be argued but not in all cases.

        Equally thouugh didn't the last government fix the issues of Child poverty and housing as they were such important issues and seeing how they had a complete majority?

        • Descendant Of Smith 1.2.1.1

          You have no idea in other words and are just parroting lines.

          • Mr Nobody 1.2.1.1.1

            As we're you with you comment of "Sadly rapicous landlords took it all and more in many cases"

            If you don't want to just hear parroted lines don't offer them up as insightful commentary.

            • Descendant Of Smith 1.2.1.1.1.1

              Here's the difference:

              Equally thouugh didn't the last government fix the issues of Child poverty and housing as they were such important issues and seeing how they had a complete majority?

              No one has ever said that, no-one believes it to be true and it is patently a false supposition.

              Sadly rapacious landlords took it all and more in many cases.

              Food banks, budgeters, research, treasury, real estate agents, etc etc are all sayings rents have risen sharply in the last twelve months.

              These increases have clearly outstripped increases in benefits.

              https://www.stuff.co.nz/business/property/133102811/here-are-the-regions-with-the-biggest-rent-increases-this-year

              "But rents in some regions rose more sharply over the last year.

              Northland had the biggest increase, up 14.9% to a median of $580 a week. It meant tenants were being asked to pay $75 more a week than last year.

              Marlborough and Auckland followed, with median weekly rents climbing 14% to $570 and 11.7% to $670 respectively.

              Rents in Taranaki, Bay of Plenty and Canterbury were up 11.1%, 10.2% and 10% to $600, $650, and $550. Wellington rents were up 6.7% to $640."

        • Incognito 1.2.1.2

          And here you sound like a diversion troll with whataboutery that is off-topic with regards to the OP.

    • SPC 1.3

      1.Poor people get moved from housing so the landlord can charge higher rent. Transiency results in homelessness. Homelessness means not being in the school zone. This impacts on accessibility to school enrollment.

      These people are dependent on food banks.

      2.Compare that to paying $1.5B per annum in super to people earning over $100,000 pa from work income. And lowering the tax bills on rent income of landlords by $700M each year.

      https://www.stuff.co.nz/money/350177826/50000-people-earn-over-100k-get-pension-commission

      3.Programmes are funded from the annual budget as are other areas of government spending.

      • Mr Nobody 1.3.1

        1) Agree with the premise however I don't believe that scenario is the reason behind a significant proportion of the kids turning up to school hungry.

        I suspect realistically it is: lack of money, leading to lacknof foodnin the house or a lack parents not actually making a lunch for the kids and the kids then not making it themselves (which happens frequently with my 3 kids my wife and I don't make them make a lunchbox don't ourselves).

        The second scenario I personally don't care about, the first however I believe is criminal. NO PERSON LET ALONE A CHILD SHOULD BE GOING HUNGRY IN THIS COUNTRY.

        If that means increasing taxes, putting a food stamp program in place so money can't be spent on no n essentials I don't care as long as the scheme works and I don't believe the current scheme is working.

        There is no doubt in my mind that there is a need, however I don't believe from the information I have seen that this program is addressing that need.

        2) See above.

        3) If governments or citizens see a program as critical then it should be funded long term.

        The fact the previous government clearly advised that the funding for this program ended this year makes it clear they either felt it wasn't critical or saw it as a political gotcha.

        Could you imagine a government funding health, policing, education or welfare until only the end of the year and leaving it hanging like they did this program?

        • SPC 1.3.1.1
          1. You misunderstand my point – it was about not turning up school because they have no permanent address to enroll in one. The former school calls them truant until they enroll at a new one.

          Your point 1 was about attendance rates. This and greater focus on not spreading viruses (cold/flu/COVID) and more other problems

          https://www.weforum.org/agenda/2023/02/other-infections-rising-since-covid-pandemic/

          And then there are secondary school age children missing days because of employment to help families afford rent increases.

          2. There is no doubt in my mind that there is a need, however I don't believe from the information I have seen that this program is addressing that need.

          It is addressing a need, and until there is another programme that resolves the problem – sufficient income to housing cost – attacks on the programme are merely distraction to enable Seymour's agenda.

          3. Labour had funded the programme till the end of the 2024 school year – beyond the end of the 2023-2024 budget

          https://www.rnz.co.nz/news/election-2023/498509/labour-promises-to-keep-school-lunch-programme

          It was in the Labour Party's plan for 2025-2026 if re-elected.

  2. That_guy 2

    In times of uncertainty, I like to ask God (actually ChatGPT) for guidance:

    what percentage of food in a typical restaurant is wasted?

    The percentage of food wasted in a typical restaurant can vary widely depending on various factors such as the type of restaurant, its size, location, efficiency of operations, and waste management practices. However, studies suggest that food waste in restaurants can range from 10% to as high as 30% of total food purchased. Some larger-scale operations or buffet-style restaurants may even see higher rates of waste due to factors like over-preparation and customer plate waste. On the other hand, smaller, more efficient establishments may have lower rates of waste through careful portion control and inventory management. Overall, reducing food waste in the restaurant industry is a significant challenge and area of focus for sustainability efforts.

    • Mr Nobody 2.1

      I believe this is part of the issue. From my understanding schools can either opt in 100% or not at all.

      This means that say they have a problem with only 5 of the kids turning up without food lunches for the entire school roll have to be supplied so the 5 don't feel "different".

      The rest of the lunches are either then given to kids who may already have brought lunch from home or whose parents use to provide food from home but now accept this taxpayer subsidy, given to third party groups which range from food banks, old folks home and even Police and Fire Stations for staff or binned.

  3. Mike the Lefty 3

    ACT certainly has a thing about poor people.

    It goes all the way back to early Industrial Revolution England era.

    The rich, who made maximum profits on the backs of paying their workers minimum wages, convinced themselves that if a person was poor, it was because he/she wanted to be poor.

    Alternatively they would say that if a person was unemployed it was because he/she wanted to be unemployed and/or they were idle.

    That is what ACT intrinsically believe, although they are too smart to say it openly.

    Far from the progressive libertarian image that they profess to support, most of ACT's policies come from a time when ordinary people had few social, political or economic rights.

    • tc 3.1

      Its objectivism, a randian philosophy.

      Self interest, laissez-faire capitalism i.e. unregulated, market rules, everyone out for themselves.

      The less government involvement the better for the randian acolytes. Gives capital a free reign.

  4. Tiger Mountain 4

    “Atlas Dave” is possibly more concerned about ideology than cost saving. Certain Government (taxpayer) provided social services are a no no for committed neo liberals.

    Micky and That_guy are right about food wastage, it happens in institutions, private homes, and commercial settings. Expected or hoped for numbers fluctuate and so do appetites and preferences.

    Educationalists, Principals, Teachers and Teacher Aids have said for years that hungry kids do not learn or interact well socially with others. Free lunches and breakfasts in some cases, are the best or only food some kids get that day.

    There are more millions in ‘wasted’ national superannuation paid to those that do not need it–such as the current Deputy PM.

    Scandinavian countries are generally well off, and they have universal free school meals. Healthy food is a win for kids and the people and businesses that produce it.

    • SPC 4.1

      It’s $700M in lost tax on rent income from landlords and multiple billions of dollars in payments of super to those still working.

    • Phillip ure 4.2

      I like 'atlas dave'….I think I will start using it..

      That and Dr shane ciga-reti are the best.. so far..

      • SPC 4.2.1

        Seemore Atlas, tour the world when you can afford to off the tenants rent and untaxed CG.

  5. SPC 5

    The logistics problem with food in schools is that provision is made on the basis of the school roll and attendance level varies (illness, medical appointments, family circumstance etc)

    Food outlets that provide for customer turn-up on the day have the same problem.

    Which is why some charity groups pick up spare food, including from schools – and otherwise some children take food home.

  6. Macro 6

    Typical Tory Govt.

    Promise you everything, deliver nothing, and before you get it they take it off you.

    • georgecom 6.1

      typical ACT as well. If Seymour wants to save some money go and have a look at what else double dipton chris is pocketing, or scrap a $2 billion east-west motorway in Auckland. That dud of a road was forecast to cost $330 million per km back in 2017, heaven knows what now. simple simeon says $2 billion, the roads 5.5 km long, that's $363 million per km.very likely simple simeon has undercooked his figures, maybe up round $2.2 to $2.5 billion? severals tens of millions on food in schools is chicken feed for SS's new road, an easy saving there

  7. AB 7

    The coalition of crackpots can cut free school lunches – but only if they end poverty first. The primary purpose of free lunches for lower decile schools is to soften the effects of our shameful poverty and inequality levels. It's a way of indirectly doing something small but useful about poverty and inequality, especially if you lack the courage to attack those problems directly. I personally don't give a sh*t if attendance and educational performance doesn't clearly show a major short-term improvement – especially in a period disrupted by a pandemic. Why on earth would you expect a problem that has taken generations in the making to be solved in a few years by such a minor gesture? This pretense by the right that they are driven by evidence rather than by their inbuilt sociopathy is typically pernicious.

    • Tiger Mountain 7.1

      yes

    • That_guy 7.2

      Well said.

      Evidence isnt a bad thing but I know of nobody on the right who takes a responsible attitude towards evidence. As in: what are the limitations of this evidence, what are the caveats, what are the alternative explanations for this result, are the stats solid, was this data gathered in an unbiased and representative way. Nobody.

      TBH its not something the left is great at either.

    • Yes they ignore the science if it doesn't suit, it also appears such inconvenient subjects such as climate change and covid impacts are to be ignored or minimised. imo

  8. Reality 8

    Many people, even if they did not vote this government in, would have hoped that some things were going to benefit people and that we would not wake up each morning with a feeling of who else are they going to "slap around the ears" today. Jacinda's time as PM is sadly long gone when we could see her charming smile and feel well things are not perfect but she gave people a sense that she cared. A robotic Luxon cares about his entitlements and one day getting a knighthood.

    • Tiger Mountain 8.1

      Heh, arise Sir Baldrick…thanks for your service to the NZ ruling class and international capital…just like another recent NZ National PM.

      “SirKey” was on the AirNZ board for a couple of years as I recall during Mr Luxon’s time there.

      from the link below…
      “Mr Luxon in June told Newstalk ZB he was not "John Key 2.0", but added the former PM had encouraged him to stand for National. The speculation escalated when Christchurch businessman Steve Brooks took out a half-page ad in the Herald featuring an image of John Key morphing into Luxon.”

      https://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/john-key-backs-christopher-luxon-as-national-botany-candidate-jami-lee-ross-issues-challenge/3GQ2QMCG363EWSXJU23JPDJRZI/

    • Michael P 8.2

      "…she gave people a sense that she cared…"

      If she really cared about inequality she would have introduced some form of wealth tax and would have seriously looked at how to transition tax revenues away from work and towards wealth.

      But her position (as is the current leadership's) was essentially "no wealth tax" while she was Labour leader, end of story, no arguments.

      If Chris Hipkins is still leader at next election I won't be voting Labour (again) for this reason alone without even looking at any of their other policies.

      I really felt for David Parker. Having produced the report which showed how unfair the tax system is and which made a clear argument for some sort of wealth tax and / or major changes to the way tax is collected, his leader(s) slammed the door in his face without even a discussion. He would have been gutted.

      Drastically changing the tax system is the ONLY way to start doing anything about inequality in this country. Reducing inequality or at the very least acknowledging that something MUST be done to address it (Tinkering doesn't cut the mustard) is the ONLY way to avoid an economic catastrophe at some point in the (near) future.

      IMO.

      • Phillip ure 8.2.1

        Parker is a serious man…with a big brain..

        I could see him as labour leader..

        I could see him working well with the greens/maori party..

        To bring about the changes this country needs/is crying out for..

        • Tiger Mountain 8.2.1.1

          Agree. Serious would be good after the pack of revenge merchants in office at the moment.

          All is not lost though the vandals will have done much damage by 2026. There will be a number of boomer funerals over 3 years, and more new voters open to change.

          George Galloway in the UK Rochdale by-election showed that sometimes ordinary people can win against the party machines (and yes there are many specific features to George’s win not applicable to NZ).

      • Mike the Lefty 8.2.3

        By the way Michael P. I am still waiting for you to validate your claim that the Hurricanes Poua team receive taxpayer funding.

  9. tsmithfield 9

    From a humanitarian perspective, I don't have a problem with feeding children who are going hungry. But, what is being used at the moment appears to be a fairly blunt way of doing that.

    From a philisophical standpoint, I think this type of initiative allows parents to progressively hand more and more responsibility for their children to the state. In the long-run, I don't think this is good for children or their parents. So, I think the foood in schools is really just a band-aid solution to much deeper problems.

    We need to be finding ways of addressing the dysfunctional issues within some of these families that affects the children in more ways than just lack of food.

    • I Feel Love 9.1

      "We need to be finding ways of addressing the dysfunctional issues within some of these families that affects the children in more ways than just lack of food." – absolutely!!!

      & in the meantime use the "blunt instrument" of feeding kids in schools.

    • SPC 9.2

      Food to children is more efficient than money to parents (whether benefit, WFF tax credit and AS) as those payments can be leveraged by landlords to extract higher rent.

      Anyone arguing otherwise is working for the Ministry of Landlords, called NatIonal + ACT or National + NZF.

      The last time NZF was in coalition with National they allowed market rents for state houses – a boon for private landlords.

      Have we not had enough of their circular arguments – “we need a spending card for those receiving beneficiary payments to ensure support goes to children” and “food to children is wasteful government spending”.

      First world nations with less child poverty than us have universal food in school.

      The attitude behind doing that is why they have less child poverty.

      35/36 have a CGT and 24/36 have an estate/inheritance tax.

    • Descendant Of Smith 9.3

      So it's OK for white kids at Lindisfarne to have lunch at school but not for brown kids in Porirua?

      Those Lindisfarne parents should be making their kids take packed lunches! Many private schools provide lunch and for the same reasons – to ensure students have good nutrition and can concentrate at school.

      Why is it good for one group but not for the other – the other having additional reasons such as lack of food and nutrition at home.

      • Belladonna 9.3.1

        That seems to be a very weak argument.
        The Lindisfarne parents (in general) can afford to buy whatever lunch solutions they choose. [And, given it's a boarding school, with some day pupils – it seems likely that the logistics make a school lunch option sensible]

        Whether that is luxe packed lunches or equally luxe cafeteria or set-menu options – all paid for by parents – has no bearing on whether or not the Porirua students need school lunches.

        What I don't support is government funding for the Lindisfarne lunches.

        • Muttonbird 9.3.1.1

          Lindisfarne College students are publicly funded:

          Meanwhile, funding of state and state-integrated schools in 2019 was an average of $8475 per student.

          That's an average of state and state-integrated, but I know a similar state-integrated school in Auckland has public funding of about $6000 per student so let's call it that. Worth a lot of lunches anyway…

          https://newsroom.co.nz/2020/09/13/govt-cant-afford-to-stop-funding-private-schools-yet/

          • Belladonna 9.3.1.1.1

            And the state funding of the State schools (being rather more substantial), would presumably fund even more lunches.

            It's a pointlessly stupid argument. None of the funding provided directly to schools in NZ (whether state or integrated) is intended for school lunches.

            All schools have more than enough uses for whatever funding they get – in actually providing education.

    • mickysavage 9.4

      "From a philisophical standpoint, I think this type of initiative allows parents to progressively hand more and more responsibility for their children to the state."

      But at least their kids are fed and can learn.

    • Craig H 9.5

      It's the same debate as any government support – targeted which means some level of administrative complexity to only support the targeted group, or general which means administrative simplicity and obviously supporting more broadly than is strictly necessary.

      Here, the previous government used deciles, so targeted a bit, but kept it general at the school level. It could be more granular than that e.g. community services card holders, but schools have a targeting system, and free food is not bad. I would also guess that bulk food is cheaper and easier to do than non-bulk food. The marginal cost is there, but it's not a uniform rate where the last sandwich costs as much as the first one.

      • Descendant Of Smith 9.5.1

        This has only really been a debate since the increase of the middle class who benefitted from universalism.

        My parents generation got universal family benefit, tax deductions for non-working spouses, tax deductions for life insurance, capitalisation of family benefit to purchase a house, free education, and so on. In addition they had a welfare system that had full employment as an objective which gave the unemployed and many disabled and unwell people a meaningful job in the public service. Local management and services manifested in subtle things like my grand parents washing the Ministry of Works tea towels etc for a little more money to feed their family or the railways knowing that state houses did not come with a clothes-line allowing the workshops in their downtime to make clotheslines for the tenants (this was allowed rather than a sign of theft as some have tried to portray). Targeting was done by way of having public health nurses in communities or having seven days in hospital after having birth so any additional services could be assessed.

        These things helped them (20 individuals between both sides) move from poverty to owning a house without having had any inherited wealth. The universal nature of most assistance likely made this the largest shift in NZ from renting to home ownership ever.

        The rise of the middle class however means they benefitted less and less from these things as their fortunes and wealth rose. The middle class instead of being united with the poor become critical of them and began to be manipulated to a large extent by the rich who were always opposed to welfare, who in a Orwellian Animal Farm closing scene got them to think they were just like them.

        Universalism moved to targeting. Targeting eventually moves some to the cold, cold heart of charity and religious capitalism – poor houses (social housing), foodbanks, etc

        Maybe we will never get back to universal without a middle class collapse. A willingness to pay more tax to support universal assistance is really what is needed. If we are going to do lunch in schools – fund it in all schools – rich, poor doesn't really matter. Either it is good for kids or it is not.

        • joe90 9.5.1.1

          (this was allowed rather than a sign of theft as some have tried to portray).

          I was there (NZED) and a culture of entitlement prevailed.

          Rabbits (because white rabbits disappear) were always regarded as theft but anyone who was in a position to rein in the larceny had always been part of that culture of entitlement.

          ( tea towel washing etc was usually done by the widows of former employees)

          • Descendant Of Smith 9.5.1.1.1

            Occasionally a young new staff member would try something on where I had family working. They would get a hiding out the back and told never to do it again.

            Thieving at work was detested. Most of the thieving was members of the public at night but the staff got blamed. It was harder than people think because everything down to pens and pencils was counted and controlled. It soon became obvious.

            Obviously some variation depending on where you were.

            Biggest staff thieving I believe was at freezing works according to someone who went round cleaning it up.

        • Craig H 9.5.1.2

          Highly in favour of returning to universalism and progressive taxation over our current model of flattish taxation (when GST etc are taken into account) and targeted assistance.

        • KJT 9.5.1.3

          “Targeting eventually moves some to the cold, cold heart of charity and religious capitalism – poor houses (social housing), foodbanks, etc”
          “Maybe we will never get back to universal without a middle class collapse. A willingness to pay more tax to support universal assistance is really what is needed.”
          yes

          We won’t get there if the remaining universal services/welfare is munted, as some who should know better are advocating.
          Broadening the tax base with CGT and wealthy inheritance taxes, lessons the burden of tax increases on middle income wage earners, who currently pay 60% of all taxes.

  10. mary_a 10

    Bellamys' would be a good place to begin reducing state subsidised food wastage! Not cut our impoverished children's school lunch programme.

  11. Peter 12

    I can see the Jethro's and Goobers of Act and National fizzing about how their policies are going to reform gang members and prisoners.

    There's also probably a Simon in West Auckland who's worked out if sandwiches in school lunches are turned sideways and cut diagonally twice as many mouths can be filled.

    Be sure there'll be a David in Epsom knowing it's worth trying it as a bloody good idea.

  12. newsense 13

    This is kind of annoying. Part of the blame lies with the intelligent but dumb, part with a party who refused to defend and articulate the positive work they’d done, but rather empahasised that they were cutting costs, scaling back engagement with Maori etc too.

    Here Verity gets stuck into Seymour:

    So let’s not sugar coat this. We’re not allowed to soothe ourselves with, “oh but it’ll teach these parents a lesson and they’ll change.” Nope. It won’t. If we do this, there will just be sadder, hungrier kids out there.

    And we could help them. But we’d rather not.

    The same columnist said that a vote for Labour was somehow passé and boring. But it seems obvious enough- if you want school meals which is a Labour policy, perhaps vote for Labour? Or the Greens? I understand you don’t want to reward Labour’s current leadership and their tack to the right. But you could have helped them, but it was passé or something. Sadder hungrier kids is on every non-vote or mistaken vote for wolves in sheep’s clothing as a result of this cluttered, confused thinking.

    https://www.stuff.co.nz/politics/350202896/if-we-cut-school-lunches-were-not-allowed-lie-ourselves

  13. randal mcmurphy 14

    seemore is greedy beyond belief. he is a prime example of the vile maxim; Adam Smith — 'All for ourselves, and nothing for other people, seems, in every age of the world, to have been the vile maxim of the masters of mankind.'

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    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
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  • In a structural deficit, the only real tax cut is a spending cut
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    Point of OrderBy poonzteam5443
    5 days ago
  • A Return to Kindness?
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    Point of OrderBy poonzteam5443
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  • Back to the future, with a 2032 deadline
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    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
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    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    5 days ago
  • Grifters, Bigots & Booling With the Dawgs
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    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    5 days ago
  • Goldsmith spots a cost-saver in his Justice domain – let’s further erode our right (under Magna ...
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    Point of OrderBy Bob Edlin
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  • Climate Adam: Is Global Warming Speeding Up?
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    5 days ago
  • Brooke is on the TV, being a Minister!
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    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
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  • There’s gold – or rather, energy without carbon – in that rock, but Jones reminds us of the Tr...
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    Point of OrderBy Bob Edlin
    5 days ago
  • Climate Change: Bad faith from National
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    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • Gordon Campbell on Israel’s murderous use of AI in Gaza
    This may seem like a dumb question– but how come Israel has managed to kill at least 33,000 Palestinian civilians in Gaza, including over 13,000 children? Of course, saturation aerial bombing and artillery shelling of densely populated civilian neighbourhoods will do that. So will the targeting of children by IDF ...
    Gordon CampbellBy ScoopEditor
    5 days ago
  • Total Eclipse of the Mind.
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    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    5 days ago
  • So why do that degree… here?
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    Point of OrderBy poonzteam5443
    6 days ago
  • The hunt is on for an asterix for farm emissions
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    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    6 days ago
  • Geoffrey Miller: Aukus or not, New Zealand’s foreign policy is being remade
    This could be a watershed week for New Zealand’s international relations. Winston Peters, the foreign minister, is heading to Washington DC for a full week of meetings. The surprisingly lengthy trip just happens to coincide with a major trilateral summit of leaders from the United States, Japan and the Philippines. ...
    Democracy ProjectBy Geoffrey Miller
    6 days ago
  • The Kaka’s diary for the week to April 15 and beyond
    TL;DR: The six key events to watch in Aotearoa-NZ’s political economy in the week to April 15 include:PM Christopher Luxon is scheduled to hold a post-Cabinet news conference at 4 pm today. The Climate Commission will publish advice to the Government this evening.Parliament is sitting from Question Time at 2pm ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    6 days ago
  • 2024 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #14
    A listing of 34 news and opinion articles we found interesting and shared on social media during the past week: Sun, March 31, 2024 thru Sat, April 6, 2024. Story of the week Proxy measurement via Facebook "engagement" suggests a widely welcoming audience for Prof. Andrew Dessler's The Climate ...
    6 days ago
  • Their Money or Your Life.
    Brooke van Velden appeared this morning on Q&A, presumably paying homage to Margaret Thatcher. The robotic one had come in an 80s pink, shoulder-padded jacket, much favoured by the likes of Thatcher or Hosking. She also brought the spirit of Margaret, seemingly occupying her previously vacant soul compartment.Jack asked for ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    7 days ago
  • Truth pulls its boots on
    It's a lot easier to pull off a lie if people don't know much about what you're lying about.Sometimes, watching Christopher Luxon, you get the impression he doesn't know all that much about it, either.​​ That's the charitable interpretation. The other is that he knows full well.He was on the ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    7 days ago

  • Huge interest in Government’s infrastructure plans
    Hundreds of people in little over a week have turned out in Northland to hear Regional Development Minister Shane Jones speak about plans for boosting the regional economy through infrastructure. About 200 people from the infrastructure and associated sectors attended an event headlined by Mr Jones in Whangarei today. Last ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Health Minister thanks outgoing Health New Zealand Chair
    Health Minister Dr Shane Reti has today thanked outgoing Health New Zealand – Te Whatu Ora Chair Dame Karen Poutasi for her service on the Board.   “Dame Karen tendered her resignation as Chair and as a member of the Board today,” says Dr Reti.  “I have asked her to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Roads of National Significance planning underway
    The NZ Transport Agency (NZTA) has signalled their proposed delivery approach for the Government’s 15 Roads of National Significance (RoNS), with the release of the State Highway Investment Proposal (SHIP) today, Transport Minister Simeon Brown says.  “Boosting economic growth and productivity is a key part of the Government’s plan to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Navigating an unstable global environment
    New Zealand is renewing its connections with a world facing urgent challenges by pursuing an active, energetic foreign policy, Foreign Minister Winston Peters says.   “Our country faces the most unstable global environment in decades,” Mr Peters says at the conclusion of two weeks of engagements in Egypt, Europe and the United States.    “We cannot afford to sit back in splendid ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • NZ welcomes Australian Governor-General
    Prime Minister Christopher Luxon has announced the Australian Governor-General, His Excellency General The Honourable David Hurley and his wife Her Excellency Mrs Linda Hurley, will make a State visit to New Zealand from Tuesday 16 April to Thursday 18 April. The visit reciprocates the State visit of former Governor-General Dame Patsy Reddy ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Pseudoephedrine back on shelves for Winter
    Associate Health Minister David Seymour has announced that Medsafe has approved 11 cold and flu medicines containing pseudoephedrine. Pharmaceutical suppliers have indicated they may be able to supply the first products in June. “This is much earlier than the original expectation of medicines being available by 2025. The Government recognised ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • NZ and the US: an ever closer partnership
    New Zealand and the United States have recommitted to their strategic partnership in Washington DC today, pledging to work ever more closely together in support of shared values and interests, Foreign Minister Winston Peters says.    “The strategic environment that New Zealand and the United States face is considerably more ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Joint US and NZ declaration
    April 11, 2024 Joint Declaration by United States Secretary of State the Honorable Antony J. Blinken and New Zealand Minister of Foreign Affairs the Right Honourable Winston Peters We met today in Washington, D.C. to recommit to the historic partnership between our two countries and the principles that underpin it—rule ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • NZ and US to undertake further practical Pacific cooperation
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters has announced further New Zealand cooperation with the United States in the Pacific Islands region through $16.4 million in funding for initiatives in digital connectivity and oceans and fisheries research.   “New Zealand can achieve more in the Pacific if we work together more urgently and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Government redress for Te Korowai o Wainuiārua
    The Government is continuing the bipartisan effort to restore its relationship with iwi as the Te Korowai o Wainuiārua Claims Settlement Bill passed its first reading in Parliament today, says Treaty Negotiations Minister Paul Goldsmith. “Historical grievances of Te Korowai o Wainuiārua relate to 19th century warfare, land purchased or taken ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Focus on outstanding minerals permit applications
    New Zealand Petroleum and Minerals is working to resolve almost 150 outstanding minerals permit applications by the end of the financial year, enabling valuable mining activity and signalling to the sector that New Zealand is open for business, Resources Minister Shane Jones says.  “While there are no set timeframes for ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Applications open for NZ-Ireland Research Call
    The New Zealand and Irish governments have today announced that applications for the 2024 New Zealand-Ireland Joint Research Call on Agriculture and Climate Change are now open. This is the third research call in the three-year Joint Research Initiative pilot launched in 2022 by the Ministry for Primary Industries and Ireland’s ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Tenancy rules changes to improve rental market
    The coalition Government has today announced changes to the Residential Tenancies Act to encourage landlords back to the rental property market, says Housing Minister Chris Bishop. “The previous Government waged a war on landlords. Many landlords told us this caused them to exit the rental market altogether. It caused worse ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Boosting NZ’s trade and agricultural relationship with China
    Trade and Agriculture Minister Todd McClay will visit China next week, to strengthen relationships, support Kiwi exporters and promote New Zealand businesses on the world stage. “China is one of New Zealand’s most significant trade and economic relationships and remains an important destination for New Zealand’s products, accounting for nearly 22 per cent of our good and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Freshwater farm plan systems to be improved
    The coalition Government intends to improve freshwater farm plans so that they are more cost-effective and practical for farmers, Associate Environment Minister Andrew Hoggard and Agriculture Minister Todd McClay have announced. “A fit-for-purpose freshwater farm plan system will enable farmers and growers to find the right solutions for their farm ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • New Fast Track Projects advisory group named
    The coalition Government has today announced the expert advisory group who will provide independent recommendations to Ministers on projects to be included in the Fast Track Approvals Bill, say RMA Reform Minister Chris Bishop and Regional Development Minister Shane Jones. “Our Fast Track Approval process will make it easier and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Pacific and Gaza focus of UN talks
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters says his official talks with the United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres in New York today focused on a shared commitment to partnering with the Pacific Islands region and a common concern about the humanitarian catastrophe in Gaza.    “Small states in the Pacific rely on collective ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Government honours Taranaki Maunga deal
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    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Enhanced partnership to reduce agricultural emissions
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    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • 110km/h limit proposed for Kāpiti Expressway
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    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • New Zealand Biosecurity Awards – Winners announced
    Two New Zealanders who’ve used their unique skills to help fight the exotic caulerpa seaweed are this year’s Biosecurity Awards Supreme Winners, says Biosecurity Minister Andrew Hoggard. “Strong biosecurity is vital and underpins the whole New Zealand economy and our native flora and fauna. These awards celebrate all those in ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Attendance action plan to lift student attendance rates
    The Government is taking action to address the truancy crisis and raise attendance by delivering the attendance action plan, Associate Education Minister David Seymour announced today.   New Zealand attendance rates are low by national and international standards. Regular attendance, defined as being in school over 90 per cent of the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • World must act to halt Gaza catastrophe – Peters
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters has told the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) in New York today that an immediate ceasefire is needed in Gaza to halt the ongoing humanitarian catastrophe.    “Palestinian civilians continue to bear the brunt of Israel’s military actions,” Mr Peters said in his speech to a ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Speech to United Nations General Assembly: 66th plenary meeting, 78th session
    Mr President,   The situation in Gaza is an utter catastrophe.   New Zealand condemns Hamas for its heinous terrorist attacks on 7 October and since, including its barbaric violations of women and children. All of us here must demand that Hamas release all remaining hostages immediately.   At the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Government woolshed roadshow kicks off
    Today the Government Agriculture Ministers started their national woolshed roadshow, kicking off in the Wairarapa. Agriculture Minister Todd McClay said it has been a tough time for farmers over the past few years. The sector has faced high domestic inflation rates, high interest rates, adverse weather events, and increasing farm ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • PM heads to Singapore, Thailand, and Philippines
    Prime Minister Christopher Luxon will travel to Singapore, Thailand and the Philippines this week (April 14-20), along with a senior business delegation, signalling the Government’s commitment to deepen New Zealand’s international engagement, especially our relationships in South East Asia. “South East Asia is a region that is more crucial than ever to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Prime Minister launches Government Targets
    Prime Minister Christopher Luxon has announced further steps to get New Zealand back on track, launching nine ambitious Government Targets to help improve the lives of New Zealanders. “Our Government has a plan that is focused on three key promises we made to New Zealanders – to rebuild the economy, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Natural hydrogen resource should be free of Treaty claims entanglement
    Natural hydrogen could be a game-changing new source of energy for New Zealand but it is essential it is treated as a critical development that benefits all New Zealanders, Resources Minister Shane Jones says. Mr Jones is seeking to give regulatory certainty for those keen to develop natural, or geological, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Government responds to unsustainable net migration
    ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • New Zealand on stage at global Space Symposium
    Space Minister Judith Collins will speak at the Space Symposium in the United States next week, promoting New Zealand’s rapidly growing place in the sector as we work to rebuild the economy. “As one of the largest global space events, attended by more than 10,000 business and government representatives from ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • $4.9m project completed with marae reopening
    A significant marae has reopened in the heart of Rotorua marking the end of renovations for the Ruatāhuna Marae Renovation Cluster, a project that provided much-needed jobs and regional economic stimulus, Regional Development Minister Shane Jones says. Mr Jones was at the official reopening of Mātaatua ki Rotorua Marae today. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Pure Tūroa Limited to operate Tūroa ski field
    Ko Tahuarangi te waka – Tahuarangi is the ancestral vessel Ko Rangitukutuku te aho – Rangitukutuku is the fishing line Ko Pikimairawea te matau – Pikimairawea is the hook Ko Hāhā te Whenua te ika kei rō-wai – Hāhā te whenua is the fish (of Māui) whilst under the ocean ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Methane targets to be independently reviewed
    Rebuilding New Zealand’s economy will rely on the valuable agricultural sector working sustainably towards our climate change goals.  Today, the Climate Change and Agriculture Ministers announced that an independent panel of experts will review agricultural biogenic methane science and targets for consistency with no additional warming. Agriculture Minister Todd McClay ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • NZ and Nordics: likeminded partners
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters has highlighted the strong ties that bind New Zealand and the Nordic countries of Northern Europe during a trip to Sweden today.    “There are few countries in the world more likeminded with New Zealand than our friends in Northern Europe,” Mr Peters says.    “We ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • First New Zealand C-130J Hercules takes flight
    The first New Zealand C-130J Hercules to come off the production line in the United States has successfully completed its first test flights, Defence Minister Judith Collins announced today. “These successful flights are a significant milestone for the New Zealand Defence Force, bringing this once-in-a-generation renewal of a critical airlift ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Government to rephase NCEA Change Programme
      The coalition Government is making significant changes to the NCEA Change Programme, delaying the implementation by two years, Minister of Education Erica Stanford announced today. “Ensuring New Zealand’s curriculum is world leading is a vital part of the Government’s plan to deliver better public services and ensure all students ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • New Ngāpuhi investment fund Chair appointed
    Ben Dalton has been appointed the new board Chair of Tupu Tonu, the Ngāpuhi Investment Fund, says Treaty Negotiations Minister Paul Goldsmith and Associate Finance Minister Shane Jones. “Ben brings a wealth of experience in governance and economic development to the position. He will have a strong focus on ensuring ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Education should be prioritised ahead of protesting
    Students should be in school and learning instead of protesting during school hours, Associate Education Minister David Seymour says. “If students feel strongly about sending a message, they could have marched on Tuesday when there was a nationwide teacher only day, or during the upcoming school holidays. It has become ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Delivering on Local Water Done Well
    Cabinet has agreed on key steps to implement Local Water Done Well, the Coalition Government’s plan for financially sustainable locally delivered water infrastructure and services, Local Government Minister Simeon Brown says.  "Councils and voters resoundingly rejected Labour’s expensive and bureaucratic Three Waters regime, and earlier this year the Coalition Government ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Peters to visit New York, Washington D.C.
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters will engage with high-level United States Government and United Nations officials in the United States next week (6-12 April).    The visit, with programmes in New York and Washington D.C., will focus on major global and regional security challenges and includes meetings with US Secretary of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago

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