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Maori support for Labour

Written By: - Date published: 10:25 am, October 1st, 2014 - 56 comments
Categories: labour, maori party, Maori seats - Tags: ,

One of the few bright spots for Labour in the election was the renewed support of Maori. Labour now holds 6 of the 7 Maori seats. Only Waiariki was retained for the Maori Party by co-leader Te Ururoa Flavell. Combined with a party vote of just 1.3% it seems clear that the Maori Party has failed to convince Maori that it represents their interests. This should hardly come as a surprise – poll after poll showed that the Maori electorate wanted the party to align with Labour, election after election they aligned with National.

Personally distressing as this must be for the Maori Party founders, Tariana Turia’s angry outburst in a recent speech probably hasn’t done the Maori Party any favours, and has drawn a critical response:

Turia ‘beaten wives’ speech angers

Labour MP Kelvin Davis has come out swinging against outgoing Maori Party co-leader Tariana Turia, who likened Maori who voted Labour to “beaten wives” going back to their husbands. …

[Turia] quoted a Facebook post made by one her family members, which said:

“Maori will never learn. Like a beaten wife they go back for more, believing they can’t do without that particular partner. Either way Maori are again the biggest losers in a democratic system. Politics should be a must for mokopuna to learn through the education system if we are ever to see through the muddy waters of fear and lies.”

But Te Tai Tokerau and Labour MP Kelvin Davis has slammed the comment. “It’s really inappropriate to undermine the issue of domestic violence,” he said. Turia was “understandably smarting” at the Maori Party’s loss of votes this election, but she needed to “stay classy”. … “I don’t think it does anything for the fight against domestic violence.”

Turia was not immediately available for comment, but further along in her speech acknowledged it was a controversial statement.

What now for the Maori Party?

One goal for Labour in the Maori electorates should be to engage with and raise the participation of Maori in the electoral process. As Turia also pointed out “45 percent of Maori failed to even make it to the ballot box”. That is a huge concern. Every political party should be asking themselves why so many Maori, and so many Kiwis in general, choose not to vote.

56 comments on “Maori support for Labour”

  1. BM 1

    Turia is right, Fucks knows why Maori keep voting Labour.

    The only thing I can think of is that Maori unionists are very active within the various marae organisations making sure every one votes labour.

    Because lets be honest, comparing Labour to National, Maori have achieved bugger all with labour.

    • Lanthanide 1.1

      But, one can be sure that any Labour government will do more in co-operation with the Maori Party (and/or Mana) than could be achieved between those parties and National.

      • Roflcopter 1.1.1

        Really? How does that come about when you’re told you’re the last cab off the rank?

        • Lanthanide

          2005 was almost 10 years ago.

          • Roflcopter

            With a Labour Party in 2014 full of the same people as in 2005… and a 2014 election comment that no deal would be done with the Māori Party.

            • Lanthanide

              “and a 2014 election comment that no deal would be done with the Māori Party.”

              Largely, I suspect, because Winston Peters ruled it out. Had National required Winston to form a government, it would have been the same situation for the MP then as well.

    • DoublePlus Good 1.2

      Only wealthy tribal elites do well out of the Maori party’s involvement with National. The rest are better served by the left.

      • swordfish 1.2.1

        Yep. The Maori Party has simply been a vehicle for delivering a whole swathe of Labour-preferring Maori voters to the National Party.

    • Chris 1.3

      What’s the bet National will abolish the Maori seats?

      • boldsirbrian 1.3.1

        @ Chris (1.3)

        Not a chance. Little incentive. Would be seen as anti-Maori. Dirty John is many things but could work this out easily.

        However, that may become part of the agenda, if Labour became smarter about the Maori seats. Did a deal, giving the electorate seats to a friendly coalition Party, in exchange for the Party votes.. Potentially a lot of extra seats for a smart Left coalition. Dirty John and his mate Whaleoil would quickly come up with a different narrative.

        • Chris

          It was National’s policy to do that possibly as late as 2008. For National it’s a matter of time.

    • I thought those on the right have been criticising analyses that suggest that voters don’t know what is in their best interests?

      • swordfish 1.4.1

        Yep. And after a good deal of highly-sophisticated theorising and elaborate conjecture, BM’s come up with an ingenious analytical framework that seeks to understand the complexities of the Maori vote through the nuanced prism of: A bunch of aggressive Maori Trade Unionists strong-arm everyone on the Marae in to voting Labour.

    • Foreign Waka 1.5

      It is not Maori but the upper hierarchy of Maori that leans towards national. This should not come as a surprise. It is in the Maori Hierarchy interest to do so as a tribal structure feed all funds upwards. This is very similar to the way National designs its polices. Look at the statistics. After 6 years of that great relationship Maori kids are the greatest proportion of the poorest in the country. All the funds that were received and National has boasted about its great record, the situation has worsened. Why would that be?

    • Murray Olsen 1.6

      Great post, BM. It shows that you don’t have a clue about the history of our country and almost everything you think you know comes from Whalespew. It’s pretty obvious why hardly any of them still vote for the Maori Party, given its subservience to NAct.

  2. DoublePlus Good 2

    The 7 Maori seats averaged around 18000 votes. By contrast, Mangere, Manukau East and Manurewa had around 22000 votes, Kelston was around 26000, and all others were in the 28000-35000 range.

    If turnout was another 10,000 in each of the 10 electorates with the worst turnout (so they’d roughly match the low end of other electorates), and those extra votes mirrored the result in those 10 electorates, that’s something like 70,000 extra votes for Labour, Greens, NZ First and Mana compared to 30,000 for Maori party and National.
    A very rough calculation indicates that to be something like +1.2% for the left, which could be enough that National would not have an absolute majority and would need to rely on Peter Dunne, David Seymour and the two Maori party candidates to form a government.
    If the two Maori party candidates weren’t there and Mana was in parliament because Labour had shown some semblance of understanding of how to MMP, then at a stretch even a Labour-led government could have been formed.

    So Labour focussing on increasing turnout in the Maori electorates and in South Auckland could pay off in a huge way.

    • Lanthanide 2.1

      So Cunliffe’s idea of a Maori deputy (or co-deputy?) is a pragmatic approach.

    • lprent 2.3

      There are programs to do exactly that. They are based around neighbourhood level efforts so are pretty slow to expand. But they do seem to be working. Needless to say that they seem to be largely run without much party level support.

  3. Tariana’s choice of words was unfortunate and the analogy doesn’t really work for me but the sentiment is correct imo. The ‘bright spot’ for labour is a dark spot for tangata whenua but as they voted so shall they reapith. As for kd – his true colours will come out soon enough and mark my words they won’t be any hue of red.

  4. Ant 4

    I can get what Tariana is saying, but the Māori Party failed to live up to its potential, and also failed to articulate what real gains it was making for Māori in return for legitimising National and Key.

    Personally, I voted for Peeni although I would have preferred Rangi sans the Māori Party. (not to take anything away from Peeni because he seems like he will still be good).

    I still hope Mana and the Māori Party can reconcile at some point.

  5. Used to be a socialist 5

    Maori party were excluded by Clarke, they were invited into the tent by John Key. The old saying it is better in the tent pissing out than out of the tent trying to piss in. Thus Flavell is right, his choice is to be in Government all the time no matter if Labour or National win. Maori in general who voted for Labour are now outside the tent with no say of what is going on or what to do. I can’t put it simpler than “it is better to have some influence than none at all”!

    [lprent: BTW tagging you as a probable troll. The misspelling of Clark is symptomatic. You will be on moderation for some time until you can convince me that sufficient intelligence to participate in the debate lurks behind such a stupid interior. ]

    • lprent 5.1

      Perhaps you should also point out that the Maori party are going rapidly backwards electorally in the clutches of National. From the wikipedia page.

      Election # of candidates nominated (electorate/list) # of seats won # of party votes  % of popular vote
      42 / 51

      4 / 121
      7 / 19

      5 / 122

      11 / 17

      3 / 121
      24 / 24

      2 / 121


      It rather looks to me as if the only thing that kept Flavell in his seat this time around was the split between Labour and the Mana party. They are widely regarded as being the party of the Iwi corporates, including by many of those who support them.

      • Kiwiri 5.1.1

        Labour (sans Davis) and Mana should have had a chat about a progressive arrangement to enhance representation in Parliament:

        Labour would campaign for the party, not electorate, vote in TTT.

        In turn, Mana would campaign for the party, not electorate, vote in Waiariki.

        • lprent

          There is a basic issue with these kinds of deals. The experience of getting *dependent* on the largess of a larger party in NZ (and offshore) for sweetheart deals is that they appear to lead to the most dependent party dying over time.

          For long-term survival, parties need to be able to win their electorates and/or party vote. If they can’t then they should merge or die.

          In NZ the resilience of both NZ First and the Greens is due to them building a constituency and then retaining and building on it. Admittedly NZ First had to do that several times 🙂

          • SPC

            Labour only won this seat because of the National and NZ First vote for Davis.

            It is Davis who is the dependent.

      • The Lone Haranguer 5.1.2

        Lynn, you are correct that the Maori Party are getting eaten alive electorally, by being in bed with the Nats. And it would be a very accurate summary of the ACT story too – they did okay till they got around the Cabinet table.

        And looking back further in time, the small parties that took seats around the Cabinet table with the Clark led Labour government didnt fare much better really, largely because they lose their identity and the big party seems keen to hoover up their voters over time.

        Even Winston had three years in the wilderness.

        Both of the big parties think and act in a very FPP kind of way. I guess its in their blood.

    • One Anonymous Bloke 5.2


      Before LBJ’s famous remark about J. Edgar Hoover gets mangled any further let’s remember what he actually said: “It’s probably better to have him inside the tent pissing out, than outside the tent pissing in.”

  6. Jay 6

    I very much agree with Mrs Turia. Sit in opposition, achieve little. Sit in government, achieve more. And the more seats you have, the more you achieve. Instead of five mps in government for the next three years they have two, with them languishing in opposition. What’s the point. Why not just for coalitions with whoever each election? It’s a no brainer.

    • DoublePlus Good 6.1

      “Achieve more” in this case means making some cosmetic improvements that look like you are doing something for Maori while you prop up a government that is making things dramatically worse for Maori.

      • boldsirbrian 6.1.1

        Remember it was the Labour Party who unnecessarily rejected the Maori Party before the Election. NOT the other way around. There could possibly have been a result where the Maori Party could have been the kingmakers. And in that situation may have chosen Labour. Labour do need to learn about MMP.

        The Maori Party is not propping the Government up at the moment. They had the choice of being in Opposition, alongside an unfriendly Labour Party, or achieving some limited goals within Government. I cant say I blame them.

        Would they have fared any better staying on the Left of politics? Doesn’t seem likely, based on how Labour treated Mana. Labour was just as happy to rub Mana’s face into the ground. It’s almost as if Labour were campaigning for extra votes from the Greens and Mana, and not so concerned about attracting votes away from Dirty John.

        Labour actively opposed both the Maori Party and the Mana Party. What I read from that, is that Labour are far more interested in the power achieved from the Maori seats than they re about making things dramatically better for Maori. How little things seem to have changed from when Helen Clark contemptuously treated Maori concerns.

        What Mana policies do Labour actually object to? Is there something dreadfully wrong with Hone Harawira’s concerns with poverty? Because if there isn’t, Labour should go back to classes in MMP 101, and work WITH Hone. Let Mana have two or three electorate seats (Mana have some excellent candidates), and in return campaign for the Party vote in those electorates. Labour have done it before with Anderton; Dirty John is doing it with Seymour and Dunne. It’s not rocket science.

        Remember it was Cunliffe (the darling of the so called left of Labour) who appeared to find Mana’s Poverty and Justice concerns so objectionable. Things get very topsy turvey in politics sometimes. I could perhaps have more faith in poverty concerns from the so called “nasty neoliberal rightists” of Labour. Even Dirty John is sensing a gap in this policy area, and is craftily attempting to drive a wedge into this area (or at least appear to be doing so)

        There is the opportunity for Labour to show that they have won the Maori seats and are willing to treat the seats with respect. Time will tell.

        These will be the issues that I will taking into account, before I cast my vote for Labour Leader in the next few weeks.

        I don’t give a damn whether the candidates are left/right; up/down; or east/west. I don’t give a damn whether the candidates are neo-liberal or neo-communist or neo-Burger-King, which seem to be the concerns of far too many people on this blog.

        Where do the candidates stand, but more importantly what will they do, for poverty, for inequality, for employment, for fairness, for justice, for the environment, for science, for the arts and leisure, and last but not least for prosperity?

        • Colonial Viper

          fair and broad ranging criticisms. Labour’s extinguishing of potential allies and cross party partnerships even as its own clarity of purpose and party vote declines further, has done no one on the ‘Left’ any favours.

          I’m still pissed off that we lost Hone and Laila, and got bloody Kelvin Davis, yet another future Labour leader to be, instead. National on the other hand actually get MMP, and keeps its useful pets around so it can get political cover for ever more ridiculous and damaging policies.

        • Lanthanide

          “Remember it was the Labour Party who unnecessarily rejected the Maori Party before the Election.”

          Actually it was NZFirst. Labour clearly needed NZFirst to form a government, so had to echo his comments. National also could have been in exactly the same position.

          “There could possibly have been a result where the Maori Party could have been the kingmakers. And in that situation may have chosen Labour. Labour do need to learn about MMP.”
          It would be incredibly unlikely that the MP could be a in kingmaker position that was not eclipsed by NZFirst.

          “Remember it was Cunliffe (the darling of the so called left of Labour) who appeared to find Mana’s Poverty and Justice concerns so objectionable. ”

          No, it was the public who found Mana, and more importantly Kim Dotcom, so objectionable, and Cunliffe tried to distance Labour from them so as not to completely turn off “middle NZ”, whose votes they need in order to win the election (as was clearly demonstrated by their loss).

          • boldsirbrian

            @ Lanthanide (

            “Remember it was the Labour Party who unnecessarily rejected the Maori Party before the Election.”

            Actually it was NZFirst. Labour clearly needed NZFirst to form a government, so had to echo his comments. National also could have been in exactly the same position.

            Labour did not “have” to do anything of the sort. Labour did what it did because it wanted to. For a start,
            (1) I heard no demand from NZFirst to do so;
            (2) I heard no agreement that NZFirst would go into coalition with Labour on the condition that the Maori party were snubbed and
            (3) I heard NZFirst say nothing else than they would wait and see what the result of the election was before negotiating
            (4) Far more importantly I do not accept that Labour has to sell it’s soul to gain power. Labour should do what is right. If what you say is true that Labour was simply treating Winston Peters as their Master, their politics have slipped to an all time low. ……


            “There could possibly have been a result where the Maori Party could have been the kingmakers. And in that situation may have chosen Labour. Labour do need to learn about MMP.”
            It would be incredibly unlikely that the MP could be a in kingmaker position that was not eclipsed by NZFirst.

            Of course it would have been unlikely. But when should principles be compromised by how likely something is to happen?

            “I’m going to dangle this block of concrete above your head. But that’s ok, because there is only a one in a million chance of the rope breaking…. OK?


            “Remember it was Cunliffe (the darling of the so called left of Labour) who appeared to find Mana’s Poverty and Justice concerns so objectionable. ”

            No, it was the public who found Mana, and more importantly Kim Dotcom, so objectionable, and Cunliffe tried to distance Labour from them so as not to completely turn off “middle NZ”, whose votes they need in order to win the election (as was clearly demonstrated by their loss).

            For a start they were distanced from Mana and the Internet Parties in exactly the same way that National was distanced from the minor parties on the right. They were different parties. At the very worst, Labour could have treated Mana in exactly the same way as National treated the Conservatives – by keeping a button on the lips.

            Labour chose to react to the story that was the making of Dirty John, and in knee jerk reaction in vilifying Mana themselves, Labour set the “objectionable” story about Mana for the public as much as Dirty John was responsible. Labour chose to let Dirty John set the agenda. Dirty John in contrast, astute politician, maintained his own position for his far more lunatic (potential) partners on the far right.

            Pray tell in what way was the Mana-Internet Party so objectionable? They were certainly objectionable to Dirty John…. as there were potentially two or three or even four seats that he might not receive. But I’m not aware of a whole lot of policies that they were promoting that the Left could not have embraced. What was objectionable about Mana’s main plank of fighting poverty; promoting justice?

            What was objectionable about Dotcom? His weight? His country of origin? The fact that he had a criminal conviction? The fact that he was rich? They are all smears…. We have had plenty of obese politicians. Dotcom’s wealth was achieved in almost an exact parallel way that Dirty John himself became wealthy. Germans have a wonderful reputation in New Zealand … World War 2 started 75 years ago! There are plenty of politicians who have had a past that included a criminal conviction.

            Where on Earth did Labour park any sense of fairness and justice over all this? At the first sign of a smear, they panicked, and panicked bad. What they could have done is talked with pride about their own policies, and explained how close and admirably similar the Internet Mana party’s main policies also were. It’s called integrity, and believing in your own party, believing in fairness, believing in justice, and believing in not succumbing to bigotry and ignorance.

            I hope that there is a lesson in there for Labour.

            • Murray Olsen

              You make a lot of sense, Boldsirbrian. I also wonder what role Matt McCarten may have played in distancing Labour from Mana. I certainly didn’t see any evidence of the political genius proclaimed so loudly on The Daily Bog.

              Over the long term I predict that Maori will continue to leave Labour and Labour will continue to take Maori for granted.

              • boldsirbrian

                @ Murray Olsen (

                I don’t know about Matt McCarten’s role. Regardless of the person who thought it up, the buck must stop with David Cunliffe, for implementing the “strategy”

                In the election Maori have “come back to Labour”, with regard to the Maori seats. So Labour do have an opportunity now to not repeat the mistakes of the past. I’m optimistic that Labour will consider this issue well in their review, and not take Maori for granted ??

                It’s sort of a Clayton’s win though with all the Maori seats. A win that is not really a win. They have dealt a king hit to Mana, who could have been a potential valuable MMP partner. That is the part that is the most frustrating, for those wanting a Left victory in the future. The Mana Party is the sort of Party that I could have imagined a smart Labour Party inventing, rather than killing off.

    • Tracey 6.2

      they still get less than ACT… and, arguably, peter dunne.

      4500 people innz voted for dunne.

      ANY suggestion that the MP is getting stuff reflecting their electoral position is a little misguided… less so this time due to drop in party vote, but white middle aged male parties known as act and uf are boxing WAY above their electorate weight.

  7. swordfish 7

    While I agree with the broad thrust, Anthony, you’re possibly being just a tad naughty with your suggestion: “Combined with a party vote of just 1.3% it seems clear that the Maori Party has failed to convince Maori that it represents their interests.”

    This implies that the Maori Party only averaged 1.3% across the Maori seats, when, of course, it’s actually the New Zealand-wide figure (and that’s not really all that much down on 2011’s 1.4%). In the Maori seats, the Maori Party’s Election Night Party-Vote ranged from a low of 10.1% to a high of 21.4%.

    Hate to be some sort of self-righteous, holier-than-thou lurgee-type figure, but there you are.

    The reality is: this time around, the Maori Party took a hit in the Candidate-Vote, but not the Party-Vote. They’d taken a major hit in the latter back in 2011.

  8. mikesh 8

    Has Flavell been offered a ministerial role? And if not might this not portend the abolition of the Maori seats?

    • The Lone Haranguer 8.1

      I think thats getting announced next week. No idea why it wasnt announced with the ACT and UF deals tho.

      Key did say, post election, Flavell would probably get Maori affairs

      • Dazzer 8.1.1

        As I understand it, Flavell is undertaking hui around the countryside before agreeing (or not) to the proposal.

  9. Phil 9

    … poll after poll showed that the Maori electorate wanted the party to align with Labour, election after election they aligned with National.

    Incorrect. Poll after poll showed that Maori Party party-voters wanted the MP to align with Labour if the party held the balance of power. They haven’t, and the only post-election choices available to the party have been to support national or be in opposition. Also remember that the post-election hui have supported being in government rather than being in opposition.

  10. SPC 10

    The Maori MP’s are subordinated within the wider Labour caucus and Labour cannot give them anything without compromising itself in the centre.

    Only by having an independent ally can this be avoided, as National does with MP.

    Turia is right. This is the best for Maori.

    Thus Labour could well get out of these electorates and allow a left wing Maori Party as an alternative to the “iwi corporate” MP.

    The one provisio, National would respond to this by getting cold feet about the Maori electorates delivering electorate seats (overhang) to a Labour ally. Thus end support for Maori seats continuing while Maori wanted them to and seek to put this to a wider referendum.

    Having Mana operate (winning one or two of the seats) and compete with Labour is the less than optimum compromise, but it avoids that risk.

  11. Tautoko Viper 11

    Although I was disappointed that Hone lost the Te Tai Tokerau seat and that the split vote Hone/Labour didn’t eventuate, I do see some good signs in the Māori support for Labour. I believe they voted for the social justice policies. If Labour is moved towards the centre, then this support will be withdrawn, along with that of grassroots LEC members.
    The party does not “belong’ to the MPs. The direction of the party will be determined by the people. If an MP finds that direction untenable, then he/she should resign.

    • Colonial Viper 11.1

      The party does not “belong’ to the MPs. The direction of the party will be determined by the people. If an MP finds that direction untenable, then he/she should resign.

      And that is the entire game, right there, in two sentences.

  12. Used to be a socialist 12

    To Comrade iprent: hit a we nerve did we? To castigate me for spelling Clark’s name is petty. In doing so on such a small matter you missed the big picture altogether!

    [lprent: Just bored with inadequate trolls.

    “used to be a socialist”, misspelling of Clark, and being a stupid jerkoff just scream “RWNJ concern troll” to me. It wasn’t as if you said anything of significance. I’ve seen tens of thousands of similar comments on the site in the past 7 years. So we won’t waste any more time with an such a pathetic troll refugee from 2008. I think even the right wingers on the site will be bored.

    Go back home to blubberboy. Bye bye ]

  13. word 13

    Tariana Turia is showing her true colours, she is behaving like a nasty RWNJ. Turia should know that Maori do not support her Right Wing Maori Party.

    • boldsirbrian 13.1

      @ word (12)

      One thing about Tariana is that she cares much less about right wing and left wing, and is more passionate about policies that will benefit Maori.

      Tariana had a senior position in Labour, and was treated by Labour with contempt. She walked from Labour on a point of principle, even with a high prospect of political oblivion.

      That she formed the Maori Party that has achieved more successes is to her credit. That she has been treated better by the Nats than she was by Labour may annoy Labour supporters, but who can blame the Party?

      I think there may be only one or two MPS (if any) in the whole house who did not have a high respect for Tariana as a politician.

      The landscape has now changed, a decade later. The Maori Party exists; Mana has come and gone, but still not finished; and Labour has, once again, got the majority of Maori seats.

      This should have been a lesson for Labour. Not to stick the knife into your allies. To cherish what you have and not neglect it; and before throwing the barbs, look in the mirror first.

      Labour have an opportunity. They once “owned” the Maori seats. But nothing can be taken for granted. The seats have experimented with Winston First, and the Maori Party. It’s time for Labour to pay far more than lip service to the needs of Maori.
      My vision: A caring Society, with comparable statistics for Maori and Pakeha for wealth, employment, health, education, justice, will provide benefits for both Maori and Pakeha

      And if Labour get that, it would be a fitting tribute to Tariana.

      • word 13.1.1

        @Boldsirbrian. Tariana Turia had a point of principle while propping up the National Party, donned her revolutionary cap, but continued to support John key to sell this country and its people out. Money and false sense of power won over her and Sharples so called set of “principles”

      • DS 13.1.2

        Actually, Helen Clark bent over backwards to accommodate Tariana Turia. Allowing her to vote against Government legislation while remaining a cabinet minister was unprecedented.

        Turia was so blinded by spite that she jumped into bed with a party that consciously screws over her people whenever they get the chance.

  14. red blooded 14

    True. Tariana Turia was given considerably more latitude and respect than she later gave Hone Hawarera. And let’s take note that the Māori Party did not convince National to repeal or substantially alter the Seabed and Fireshore Act (its stated aim).

    While the Labour MPs now representing most voters on the Māori roll don’t have immediate influence over this government they will, both by virtue of numbers and of their symbolic importance to Labour, have significant impact on the policies and priorities of the next Labour government and should help to provide a strong pool of talent for ministerial portfolios in times to come.

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    This week we moved into the second half of 2020 - and our Government delivered another week of big changes and major progress for New Zealanders. Read below for a wrap of the key things moments from the week - from extending paid parental leave, to making major investments in ...
    2 weeks ago
  • 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. ...
    2 weeks 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 ...
    2 weeks 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.  ...
    2 weeks 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 ...
    2 weeks 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 ...
    2 weeks 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 ...
    2 weeks 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 ...
    2 weeks 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 weeks 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 weeks 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 weeks 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 ...
    2 weeks 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 ...
    2 weeks 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.     ...
    2 weeks 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 ...
    2 weeks 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 ...
    3 weeks 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 ...
    3 weeks 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 ...
    3 weeks 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 ...
    3 weeks 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 ...
    3 weeks 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.  ...
    3 weeks 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 ...
    3 weeks 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 ...
    3 weeks ago

  • Wellbeing infrastructure for Kaipara
    A package of wellbeing infrastructure investments in Kaipara which focuses on improving the lives of the elderly and upgrading the iconic Kauri Museum has been announced by Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones today. “These shovel-ready projects will have significant benefits for their respective communities and I’m pleased this funding ...
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    8 hours ago
  • More support rolls out for SMEs
    More support is rolling out for small and medium enterprises (SMEs) from the COVID Response and Recovery Fund, to help them adapt and innovate to deal with the impact of the virus. The Ministers for Economic Development and Small Business have announced a further $40 million for the Regional Business ...
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    9 hours ago
  • District Court Judge appointed
    Stephen Clark, Māori Land Court Judge of Hamilton has been appointed as a District Court Judge with jury jurisdiction to be based in Hamilton, Attorney-General David Parker announced today. Judge Clark graduated with an LLB from Auckland University in 1988 and was admitted to the Bar in the same year. ...
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    1 day ago
  • Hawke’s Bay Airport agreement protects jobs, safeguards terminal development
    The Crown will provide a loan to Hawke’s Bay Airport to ensure it can trade through COVID-19 economic impacts, support the region’s recovery and protect up to 200 jobs. The Crown has a 50 percent shareholding in Hawke’s Bay Airport Limited (HBAL), with Napier City Council holding 26 percent and ...
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    1 day ago
  • Funding boost for four cultural events
    Four celebrated Māori and Pasifika events will receive up to $100,000 each in funding from the new Creative and Cultural Events Incubator fund, Economic Development Minister Phil Twyford announced today. The four events that were successful in the inaugural funding round are: Kia Mau Festival, Wellington Māoriland Film Festival, Otaki ...
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    1 day ago
  • Inaugural launch of Kiribati Language Week
    The Minister for Pacific Peoples, Aupito William Sio is pleased to announce the inaugural launch of Kiribati Language Week as part of the 2020 Pacific language Weeks programme. “I am so pleased that this year we are able to provide resourcing support to the Kiribati community in Aotearoa which will ...
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    3 days ago
  • New support package for wildlife institutions
    Wildlife institutions affected by a loss of visitor revenue during the COVID-19 lockdown are set to receive government support with nearly $15 million of funding available announced Minister of Conservation Eugenie Sage.  “Eco-sanctuaries, zoos, aquariums, wildlife parks, and wildlife rescue, hospital and rehabilitation facilities provide crucial support for the recovery ...
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    3 days ago
  • 300,000 students to benefit from free mental health services
    The Government is expanding and accelerating frontline mental health and wellbeing services at tertiary education institutes (TEI) to help students manage ongoing stresses related to COVID-19. “The lockdown has been hugely disruptive for students. Many of them have had to relocate and move to online learning, isolating them from their ...
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    3 days ago
  • Gang crime, meth harm targeted in Waikato
    The Minister of Police says a major operation against the Mongrel Mob in Waikato will make a big dent in drug harm and violent offending linked to organised crime networks. “Senior leadership of the Waikato Mongrel Mob has been taken out as a result of Operation Kingsville, which resulted in ...
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    4 days ago
  • Supporting victims and families to attend mosque attack sentencing
    The Government is extending the border exception criteria to enable some offshore victims and support people of the Christchurch mosque attacks to attend the sentencing of the accused beginning on 24 August2020, says Immigration Minister Iain Lees-Galloway. “We want to support our valued Muslim brothers and sisters who were directly ...
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    4 days ago
  • Boost for community freshwater restoration projects
    A project to support volunteer efforts to look after streams and rivers is getting a boost thanks to support from DOC’s Community Conservation Fund announced Minister of Conservation Eugenie Sage today.  “The government is backing efforts to look after waterways with $199,400 for the Mountains to Sea Conservation Trust from ...
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    4 days ago
  • More support for women and girls
    Minister for Women Julie Anne Genter today announced that funding for the COVID-19 Community Fund for women and girls will be doubled, as the first successful funding applications for the initial $1million were revealed. “Women and girls across the country have suffered because of the effects of COVID-19, and I ...
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    4 days ago
  • Crown accounts stronger than forecast with higher consumer spending
    The Government’s books were better than forecast with a higher GST take as the economy got moving again after lockdown, Finance Minister Grant Robertson says. The Crown Accounts for the 11 months to the end of May indicate the year end results for tax revenue will be stronger than forecast. ...
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    4 days ago
  • Govt releases plan to revitalise wool sector
    A plan to revitalise New Zealand’s strong wool sector and set it on a new, more sustainable and profitable path was unveiled today by Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor. The newly-released report - Vision and Action for New Zealand’s Wool Sector - was developed by the Wool Industry Project Action Group ...
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    4 days ago
  • Funding for Predator Free Whangārei
    Community efforts to create a Predator Free Whangārei will receive a $6 million boost, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones and Conservation Minister Eugenie Sage announced today. The new funding, through Government company Predator Free 2050 Ltd, will create around 12 jobs while enabling the complete removal of possums over ...
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    4 days ago
  • New Zealand to review relationship settings with Hong Kong
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters has announced that the New Zealand Government is reviewing the settings of its relationship with Hong Kong. “China’s decision to pass a new national security law for Hong Kong has fundamentally changed the environment for international engagement there,” Mr Peters said. “New Zealand remains deeply ...
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    5 days ago
  • Funding for Whangārei’s infrastructure projects revealed
    Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones has announced details of a multimillion-dollar investment in Whangārei for infrastructure projects that will help it recover from the economic fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic. More than 200 jobs are expected to be created through the $26 million investment from the Government’s rejuvenation package ...
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    5 days ago
  • Managed isolation and quarantine update
    Following a second incident in which a person escaped from a managed isolation facility, security is being enhanced, including more police presence onsite, Minister Megan Woods said. “The actions of some individuals who choose to break the very clear rules to stay within the facilities means that more resourcing is ...
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    5 days ago
  • Funding for Kaipara district community waste programmes
    Waste reduction and recycling programmes in Kaipara are set to get a boost with Associate Environment Minister Eugenie Sage today announcing a $361,447 grant from the Ministry for the Environment’s Waste Minimisation Fund (WMF) Sustainable Kaipara. “The new funding will allow Sustainable Kaipara to partner with local schools, kura, community ...
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    5 days ago
  • Government will support the people and economy of Southland
    The Government will support the Southland economy in the wake of multinational mining company Rio Tinto’s decision to follow through with its long signalled closure of the Tiwai Point aluminium smelter. “This day has unfortunately been on the cards for some time now, but nevertheless the final decision is a ...
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    5 days ago
  • New transformational tools for the Predator Free 2050 effort
    New tools being developed to help boost Aotearoa’s Predator Free 2050 effort were unveiled today by Minister of Conservation Eugenie Sage and Under Secretary for Regional Economic Development Fletcher Tabuteau. A new rat poison, a camera with predator recognition software to detect and report predators, a new predator lure and a ...
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    5 days ago
  • New Armoured vehicles for New Zealand Army
    The Coalition Government has approved the purchase of a fleet of Bushmaster vehicles to replace the New Zealand Army’s armoured Pinzgauers, Defence Minister Ron Mark has announced today. The new fleet of 43 Australian-designed and built Bushmaster NZ5.5 will provide better protection for personnel and improved carrying capacity. “The age ...
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    6 days ago
  • Community-led solutions to prevent family violence
    The Government’s three prevention frameworks to reduce family violence in Aotearoa were launched this week by Associate Minister for Social Development Poto Williams.   The frameworks were developed in partnership with communities around New Zealand, and build on the work the Government has already begun with its new family violence prevention ...
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    6 days ago
  • Govt confirms investment in better radiology and surgical services for Hawke’s Bay
    The Government is pleased to confirm funding for improvements to radiology and surgical services at Hawke's Bay DHB, Health Minister Chris Hipkins says.     "The Minister of Finance the Hon Grant Robertson and former Health Minister Dr David Clark approved funding for Hawke's Bay DHB’s redevelopment of their radiology facilities ...
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    6 days ago
  • Specialist alcohol and drug addiction services strengthened across New Zealand
    •    New funding for four beds at Napier’s Springhill Residential Addiction Centre •    A new managed withdrawal home and community service, and peer support before and after residential care at Tairāwhiti DHB  •    A co-ordinated network of withdrawal management services throughout the South Island •    Peer support in Rotorua and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Coastal Shipping Webinar
    Introduction, seafarers and POAL Good morning everyone, I am delighted to be online with you all today. Before I begin, I have to acknowledge that COVID-19 has disrupted the maritime sector on an unprecedented scale. The work of seafarers and the maritime industry is keeping many economies around the world ...
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    6 days ago
  • Support for resilient rail connection to the West Coast
    A $13 million investment from Government will create jobs and improve the resilience of the rail connection between Christchurch and the West Coast, Infrastructure Minister Shane Jones and Regional Economic Development Under-Secretary Fletcher Tabuteau say. The funding comes from the tagged contingency set aside in Budget 2020 for infrastructure projects ...
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    6 days ago
  • Major investment in safe drinking water
    The Government is investing $761 million to assist local government upgrade under-pressure water services across the country, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Local Government Minister Nanaia Mahuta announced today.  The announcement was made at the site of the water bore that was found to be the source of the fatal ...
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    6 days ago
  • Supporting stranded seasonal workers to keep working with more flexible options
    Recognised Seasonal Employers and migrant seasonal workers stranded in New Zealand will be able to continue working and supporting themselves with more flexible hours and roles, says Immigration Minister Iain Lees-Galloway. The time-limited visa changes are: Stranded RSE workers will be able to work part-time (a minimum of 15 hours ...
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    6 days ago
  • Relief for temporary migrants, employers and New Zealanders who need work
    The Government is making immediate short-term changes to visa settings to support temporary migrants already onshore in New Zealand and their employers, while also ensuring New Zealanders needing work are prioritised, Immigration Minister Iain Lees-Galloway says. We are: Extending temporary work visas due to expire by the end of 2020 ...
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    1 week ago
  • Freshwater commissioners and fast-track consenting convenor appointed
    Professor Peter Skelton CNZM has been appointed as Chief Freshwater Commissioner and Alternate Environment Court Judge Craig James Thompson as Deputy Chief Freshwater Commissioner for the newly established Freshwater Planning Process (FPP). Environment Minister David Parker today also announced the appointment of Chief Environment Court Judge Laurie Newhook as the ...
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    1 week ago
  • Appointment of Judge of the High Court
    Auckland Queen’s Counsel Neil Campbell has been appointed a Judge of the High Court, Attorney‑General David Parker announced today. Justice Campbell graduated with a BCom and LLB (Hons) from the University of Auckland in 1992. He spent two years with Bell Gully Buddle Weir in Auckland before travelling to the United ...
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    1 week ago
  • Feedback sought – Commercial Film and Video Production Facilities
    The Associate Minister for Greater Christchurch Regeneration, Poto Williams, is seeking feedback on a proposal to better enable the development and operation of commercial film and video facilities in Christchurch. The Proposal, developed by Regenerate Christchurch in response to a request from Christchurch City Council, asks that powers under section ...
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    1 week ago
  • Govt launches bold primary sector plan to boost economic recovery
    The Government has launched a bold plan to boost primary sector export earnings by $44 billion over the next decade, while protecting the environment and growing jobs. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern today released Fit for a Better World – Accelerating our Economic Potential, a 10-year roadmap to unlock greater value ...
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    1 week ago
  • Wellbeing of whanau at heart of new hub
    A new approach to prevent family harm that encourages greater collaboration across government and community groups is being celebrated at the opening of a new facility in Auckland. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern today opened the Multi-Disciplinary Family Harm Prevention Hub Te Taanga Manawa in Lambie Road in Manukau. The facility ...
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    1 week ago
  • New Report on Auckland Port Relocation
    The Government has released a major new report on the options for relocating the Port of Auckland’s freight operations while deferring any decision on the issue. “That decision needs to be informed by policy analysis that is still to be completed. As a result it will be up to a ...
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    1 week ago
  • Dual place names for Te Pātaka-o-Rākaihautū / Banks Peninsula features
    The history of Rāpaki is being restored through the inclusion of te reo in thirteen official place names on Te Pātaka-o-Rākaihautū / Banks Peninsula and around Lyttelton Harbour/Whakaraupō, the Minister for Land Information, Eugenie Sage, announced today.   “I am pleased to approve the proposals from Te Hapū o Ngāti ...
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    1 week ago
  • Government and Air New Zealand agree to manage incoming bookings
    Bookings for seats on Air New Zealand flights into New Zealand will be managed in the short term to ensure the Government is able to safely place New Zealanders arriving home into a managed isolation or quarantine facility, says Housing Minister Megan Woods.  “Last week Air Commodore Darryn Webb and I ...
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    1 week ago
  • $80 million for sport recovery at all levels
    Grant Robertson has today announced the first major release of funding from the $265 million Sport Recovery Package announced at Budget 2020.  “Today we’re setting out how $80 million will be invested, with $54 million of that over the 2020/2021 financial year for organisations from community level through to elite ...
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    1 week ago
  • Keeping ACC levies steady until 2022
    The Government is maintaining current levy rates for the next 2 years, as part of a set of changes to help ease the financial pressures of COVID-19 providing certainty for businesses and New Zealanders, ACC Minister Iain Lees-Galloway says. “New Zealanders and businesses are facing unprecedented financial pressures as a ...
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    1 week ago