A pre-budget announcement of a bump in Pharmac funding is good news of course, especially for those in desperate need of medication that can now be supported. But, as Labour points out (based on Treasury figures), the funding increase doesn’t even come close to catching up the cuts of the last few years. Pharmac is short $53M from 2011 / 2012 levels.
And then we have the education cuts. Government funding for state schools decreased by nearly $150 per student last year (based on Ministry of Education figures), or by over $190 when adjusted for inflation and other costs. Whittling away at state education while pouring money into charter schools.
Civil society, it’s a steady attrition, the death of a thousand cuts. But what the hell, Auckland property owners are raking it in, so it’s all good, right?