Simon Power needs to do some research

Written By: - Date published: 9:30 am, May 19th, 2009 - 15 comments
Categories: law and "order", police - Tags:

Ignorant

Ignorant

Simon Power talking on Q+A on Sunday showed a abysmal ignorance about how matters operate in his own portfolio. He blamed lawyers and juries for slowing the court system down. My experience in courts says that he is wrong – it is usually the police slowing things down. The lawyers agree here.

He is correct when he says

No that wasn’t part of the thinking, what was driving the issue was the delays that we’ve been seeing in our justice system, in the District Court for example, on average it takes about 12 months before a trial kicks off, in the High Court it’s about sixteen and a half months over the 2008 year. We have to address this, this is not without controversy I accept that, but the fact is our criminal justice system has not been delivering justice served seen to be done in a timely and helpful fashion. Victims of crime find this process incredibly difficult.

But I’d point out that it is even harder on the people who are charged with crimes, and who have to keep turning up to court for status hearings where the police say that they’re not ready to proceed, and are kept waiting to get a final hearing. Juries at at the tail end of a large number of status hearings, so removing juries is unlikely to speed the process by more than minutes. If the evidence was presented to the defense lawyers earlier then time taken would be reduced immensely.

Yes we are, which leads me neatly into the third issue which is that I think it’s time that the courts were able to hold lawyers, both prosecution and defense to account, for not moving through hearings in a timely and appropriate way. I just think we’re at the point now where the gaming of the system around the criminal justice processes has to be front footed.

And

I believe what we’re seeing is the system being badly incentivised, particularly around legal aid, to encourage multiple appearances on issues that should be dealt with in a short and timely way at first appearance … This gaming of the criminal justice system has got to stop.

This is total bollocks. It is a typical case of a politician looking for what they’d like to believe rather than doing the research to find out what is actually going on. In other words political game-playing.

Anyone who has had to sit through criminal status hearings is aware that the problem is almost entirely due to the slowness of the police in finalising their case and producing evidence for the court. It is completely routine for defendants and their lawyers to turn up at court, and have the police or their lawyers say that they are not ready to proceed. Typically this is because they haven’t furnished the defense lawyers with the required evidence, usually because they haven’t got very much and so haven’t finished bulking it up. It is common to have the police proceed with a case until the final date and then simply not proceed at that point through lack of evidence.

If Simon Power wants to have ‘incentivised’ the system, then I’d suggest two things would help considerably in making sure that the police focus more attention on their case for the prosecution.

First: Require that the police to have to get their case checked for strength prior to the first status hearing by lawyers, and rejected if it doesn’t have the legs. In other words, have an actual prosecution office staffed by lawyers to check the police case. That will stop the police from using the courts as an extra-legal punishment by arbitrarily charging without evidence. Some of the cases that I’ve seen brought are so weak that the judges have sometimes not bothered to hear the defense before dismissing the case.

Second: Get the courts to award costs against the NZ Police in the event that a case is dropped or lost after the first status hearing. Make these costs a separate part of the police budget so that it can be monitored. Hopefully that would provide some incentives for police managers to ensure that the quality of their prosecutions is increased.

If those things were done, then I suspect that there would be a considerable clearing of the court calendar. However I suspect that Power’s statements have more to do with providing a ‘political’ topic for the redneck BBQ’s and dinners than solving the clogged court problem.

15 comments on “Simon Power needs to do some research ”

  1. bilbo 1

    Bahahaha

    So the lawyers say that none of their own are anything naughty to try and feather their own nests ….. priceless another add for Tui methinks

  2. randal 2

    the power of the pin heads
    pin heads rule
    this government is made up of infantile juveniles who wish to boss other people around and/or take anything they have got
    they dont really care about process or rules and it is only when they run up against them do we see the true personalities of these greedy ignorant people
    I am not sorry about the direct language
    randal is not some hot house policy wonk with access to the beltway coded messages for in house consumption

  3. Am I right that legal aid isn’t paid by the hour worked? I understand from what I have read around the place that various different types of trials have a set amount of hours that the lawyer will be paid for, which usually is less than they work for.

    I guess to many this is another “giving more of my taxes to criminals\maoris” (never mind innocent until proven guilty, that’s just unimportant detail).

    A bit of an explanation may be in order, but part of the root cause of this is people who don’t understand “innocent until proven guilty”

  4. tsmithfield 4

    I think you make some good points re the police.

    To be fair to Powers, as I understand it, his comments were in the context of a general review of the whole system, rather than immediate changes to legislation. So, there should be an opportunity to put forward submissions re the police component in delays. However, that is not to say that other aspects such as those pointed to by Powers can’t be streamlined and improved as well.

    I have grave doubts about the jury system myself. Having worked in the courts and also been a foreman on a jury, I think there are a number of deficiencies with the jury system.

    Firstly, the pay rates for jurors are abysmal ($13 per half day I think). This means that often juries are suboptimal in composition due to selection more on the basis of availability rather than ability.

    Secondly, juries have no training into the complexities of the legal process, which can be a major liability, especially when evidence gets highly technical.

    IMO, we should have professional, trained juries selected on ability and contracted for jury work. This would mean that the jury system is efficient and produces equitable results.

    • Con 4.1

      The whole point of juries is that they’re ordinary people. A corps of highly paid, highly trained legal professionals is a different thing. That’s not trial by jury, it’s trial by a panel of judges.

  5. DeeDub 5

    I have never been arrested for any crime but if it ever happens I hope I am to be judged by a jury of my peers, not some ancient man who went straight from high school, to law school, to a highly paid career as a criminal lawyer, to judge. Yep, he’d have the law and the technical stuff DOWN but I’d still rather trust the life experiences and collective nouse of 12 regular people from all walks of life over one cloistered, upper-class academic with too many years sitting in a chair hearing about horrible crimes.

  6. Greg Presland 6

    Good post Lynn.

    I have practised law for 25 years and in that time I have performed a lot of criminal legal aid work. I do little now, maybe one or two cases a year. The work is stressful and very poorly remunerated and I have better things to do. I believe that I can speak with some authority and I have minimal financial interest in the subject.

    Power is being mischievous at best in his presentation. Some comments:

    1. High Court jury delays are almost exclusively to do with the P epidemic. These are multi week trials involving usually many defendants and they just clog up the Court lists. The proposed change in jurisdiction will have no effect on these lists as the High Court does not deal with offences where the maximum jail sentence is 3 years.

    2. District Court jury trials are also out of control but this has a lot to do with the increased jurisdiction that the District Court has generally and the ever increasing complexity of the legal system.

    3. I practice extensively in the Waitakere District Court. Jury trials are not held here and every time a Jury trial is scheduled the case leaves the Court so that the workload is decreased. Despite this lists are getting worse and worse. More Judges and Court time is needed and fewer jury trials will have no effect on local problems.

    4. The comment about legal aid is gratuitous at best. Lawyers tend to get paid lump sums for certain classifications of case. For instance a guilty plea and remand for a pre sentence report and sentence generally attracts the same payment no matter how many appearances there are. Lawyers are incentivised to make sure that there are as few appearances as possible as otherwise the pay per hour goes down. Defended hearings are also problematic. I can recall performing 40 hours preparation on a jury trial and being paid for only 5 of those hours.

    5. The underlying hourly rates for criminal lawyers are the lowest in the justice system. I used to time record all of my files and if I was paid for 2/3 of the actual time that I spent on a file I was doing well.

    6. The odd lawyer has given me cause for concern. Most of them however are dedicated and wish to achieve the best for their client. This can mean that you do not roll over and plead your client and actually put the police to the proof.

    7. Police performance can be better but again performance varies. Some deal with people in a dignified manner and you never see them in court. Others are over the top in their approach and seem to have defended hearings all of the time.

    Power’s comments have a sense of dog whistle about them.

    • Graeme 6.1

      High Court jury delays are almost exclusively to do with the P epidemic. These are multi week trials involving usually many defendants and they just clog up the Court lists. The proposed change in jurisdiction will have no effect on these lists as the High Court does not deal with offences where the maximum jail sentence is 3 years.

      With the passage of the Criminal Procedure Bill, a large proportion of P trials will now be able to heard in the district court.

  7. tsmithfield 7

    Con “The whole point of juries is that they’re ordinary people. A corps of highly paid, highly trained legal professionals is a different thing. That’s not trial by jury, it’s trial by a panel of judges.”

    I did not intend a panel of judges, or lawyers. Rather a group of people who at least have basic training in understanding and balancing evidence rather than being carried along by some emotive whim. A professional jury pool would build up experience as well. Randomly selected jurors are usually complete novices at the job.

    Surely, a defendant would prefer to be tried objectively rather than have a novice jury swayed by some emotive aspect of the case.

    • Lyn 7.1

      I have to say I second tsmithfield, although I appreciate the apprehension that having a “trained” jury might cause. Let me elaborate my position…..like every other moderately educated person I know, I’ve always managed to escape jury duty. I’ve been called three times. When I was working shift work I did, however, became familiar with the kinds of people who are usually around and not busy during the day – they are typically beneficiaries – short and long-term unemployed, people on sickness and disability and retired people. You can probably add students and full-time parents to that list, but they, obviously, have other things they really “should” be doing (arguably so do unemployed people but that’s another conversation). Parents will require childcare coverage for the duration of a trial, which may incur a financial cost, thus meaning they too have a cash incentive to avoid jury duty.

      When people say they would prefer to be trialled by a jury of their peers, I’m not sure they really have any understanding of what that might mean. A really interesting insight into the jury process is available on The handmirror and I include the link here.

      I’d certainly prefer that all jurors at least had a workshop training session beforehand to make sure they actually understood what they were supposed to be doing re procedure and burden of proof. And it might also be a good idea to tighten up on the excuses required to get out of jury service, and make the payments to jurors indexical at least to the cost of fulltime childcare.

      • Draco T Bastard 7.1.1

        The problem isn’t the jury but the laws. They’re far to complex for anybody but the well trained in them to understand and they are looked at in black and white rather than in the shades that real life exists in. This is why people can do a crime, get caught, and yet get off on a technicality.

        We need to fix the laws and how we deal with them.

      • Con 7.1.2

        I certainly would prefer to be tried by a jury of my peers, and I’m proud to say I have actually been called to jury service, on three occasions, and never tried to avoid it, despite it being a hassle. I served on two trials, and didn’t make it onto a jury the third time (just waited around for hours in a huge crowd of potential jurors in case we were needed).

        Sure the jury members weren’t all perfect; that’s why you have a panel of them. But they were a range of different ages and backgrounds, mostly working class. Once you start organising a “special jury pool” of “qualified” people, you’re going to lose that, aren’t you?

        It wouldn’t hurt to give people a bit more information before the trial, but honestly, being on a jury doesn’t require legal training. You discuss the case, you ask questions, you argue and vote, and you decide democratically. Jury trials are an important part of a democratic system. They shouldn’t be pissed away on the basis that the average punter can’t be trusted to make important decisions.

        I believe that (random) juries are actually the most democratic (in the original sense of the word) parts of our state. Much more so than our so-called “representative democracy” which is not at all what was originally meant by “democracy” but is, rather, a kind of “aristocracy” (“rule by the best people”). A random parliament would actually be much more representative than the current one, despite probably lacking a lot of business experience and legal knowledge.

        Whereas the NACTs ideology is fundamentally elitist – I can see why juries make no sense to them.

  8. Ben R 8

    >”Anyone who has had to sit through criminal status hearings is aware that the >problem is almost entirely due to the slowness of the police in finalising their case >and producing evidence for the court. It is completely routine for defendants and >their lawyers to turn up at court, and have the police or their lawyers say that they >are not ready to proceed.”

    What are you basing this comment on? Have you done any research on the issue or is this your anecdotal observation? This has not been my experience.

    >I believe what we’re seeing is the system being badly incentivised, particularly >around legal aid, to encourage multiple appearances on issues that should be >dealt with in a short and timely way at first appearance This gaming of the >criminal justice system has got to stop.

    >This is total bollocks.

    How much criminal law experience do you have?

    • lprent 8.1

      Anecdotal and observation. In the cases I’ve seen, the people charged have wanted to get to court for a defended hearing. Still took a year despite the defendants bring ready at the first stays hearing – apart from what the police were charging them with and why.

      Of course these are mainly for protests. But have a look at the ‘terrorist’ arrests from 2007. Still waiting to go to trial. The police have been running this as slowly as possible mainly by arguing that basic charges should somehow be heard in the high court and wanting to introduce evidence unreleted to the actual charges.

      In my experience this is the norm

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  • The no-vision thing
    Hello! Here comes the Saturday edition of More Than A Feilding, catching you up on the past somewhat interrupted week. Still on the move!Share Read more ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    6 days ago
  • When Journalists are Disingenuous
    Hi,One of the things I like the most about Webworm is to be able to break down the media and journalism a little, and go behind the scenes.This is one of those times.Yesterday an email arrived in my inbox from journalist Jonathan Milne, who is managing editor at Newsroom.I don’t ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    6 days ago
  • Me, elsewhere: Just say you’ll do the thing
    Wrote something over at 1/200 on a familiar theme of mine: The way we frame the economy as a separate, sacred force which must be sacrificed to, the way we talk about criminals as invaders who must be repelled, the constant othering of people on the benefit, people not in ...
    Boots TheoryBy Stephanie Rodgers
    7 days ago
  • A Voyage Among the Vandals: Accepted
    A nice bit of news today: my 4600-word historical fantasy-horror piece, A Voyage Among the Vandals, has been accepted by Phobica Books (https://www.phobicabooks.co.uk/books) for their upcoming Pirate Horror anthology, Shivering Timbers. This one is set in the Mediterranean, during the mid-fifth century AD. Notable for having one of history’s designated ...
    7 days ago
  • Ministerial conflicts of interest
    Since the National government came to power, it has been surrounded by allegations of conflicts of interest. Firstly, there's the fast-track law, which concentrates power in the hands of three Ministers, some of whom have received donations from companies whose projects they will be deciding on. Secondly, there's the close ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • The 2024 Budget Forecasts Are Gloomy Prognosis About The Next Three Years.
    There was no less razzamatazz about the 2024 Budget than about earlier ones. Once again the underlying economic analysis got lost. It deserves more attention.Just to remind you, the Budget Economic and Fiscal Update (BEFU), is the Treasury’s independent assessment and so can be analysed by other competent economists (although ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    7 days ago
  • A government that can't see twenty feet ahead
    There are two failings that consistently characterise a National government. One is a lack of imagination, the other is their willingness to look after their mates, no matter what harm it might do to everyone else.This is how we come to have thousands of enormous trucks carving up our roads. ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    1 week ago
  • A post I hope is incorrect
    In May, we learned that National MP David MacLeod had "forgotten" to declare $178,000 in electoral donations. Filing a donation return which is false in any material particular is a crime, and the Electoral Commission has now referred MacLeod to police, since they're the only people who are allowed to ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Māori Cannot Re-Write New Zealand’s Constitution By Stealth.
    The Kotahitanga Parliament 1897: A Māori Parliament – at least in the guise of a large and representative body dedicated to describing the shape of New Zealand’s future from a Māori perspective – would be a very good idea.THE DEMAND for a “Māori Parliament” needs to be carefully unpicked. Some Pakeha, ...
    1 week ago
  • Cowpats and Colonials.
    Dumbtown, is how my friend Gerard refers to people like ZB listeners - he’s not wrong.Normally on a Friday I start by looking at Mike Hosking’s moronic reckons of the week which he vomits down the throats of his audience like helpless baby birds in a nest, grateful for the ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    1 week ago
  • Gordon Campbell on cutting the sick leave of vulnerable workers
    Should sick leave be part and parcel of the working conditions from Day One on the job, just like every other health and safety provision? Or should access to sick leave be something that only gradually accumulates, depending on how long a worker has been on the payroll? If enacted ...
    WerewolfBy lyndon
    1 week ago
  • Nobody Move: Ageing Boomers, Laurie & Les, Talk Politics.
    So long as we live in a democracy, economic policy can never be anything other than social-democratic.“HEH!”, snorted Laurie, as he waved his debit card over the EFTPOS machine. “Same price as last week. I guess budgets aren’t what they used to be.”“I wouldn’t know,” replied the young barman, wearily, ...
    1 week ago
  • In Search Of Unity.
    Kotahitanga: New Zealand’s future belongs to those who do not fear a nation carved out of unity and solidarity, and are willing to trust the carvers. Some New Zealanders will be required to step up, and others, perhaps for the first time in their lives, will be expected to step ...
    1 week ago
  • Weekly Roundup 7-June-2024
    Welcome to another Friday roundup! Here are some recent links and stories that caught our eye, perfectly timed for your watercooler discussions and weekend reading. As always feel free to share more in the comments. Our header image this week is by Patrick Reynolds, and shows Te Komititanga from above. ...
    Greater AucklandBy Greater Auckland
    1 week ago
  • The Hoon around the week to June 7
    As Workplace Relations and Safety Minister, ACT’s Brooke van Velden is fronting proposed changes to sick pay regulations and The Holiday Act. Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: The podcast above of the weekly ‘hoon’ webinar for paying subscribers features talking with:The Kākā’s climate correspondent talking about the ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    1 week ago
  • Did we boil the oceans by cutting pollution?
    Lowering aerosol emissions from shipping has altered clouds, with potentially drastic effects. Photo: Getty ImagesTL;DR: Here’s the top six news items of note in climate news for Aotearoa-NZ this week, and a discussion above between Bernard Hickey and The Kākā’s climate correspondent Cathrine Dyer:New evidence is increasingly pointing at efforts ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    1 week ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #23 2024
    Open access notables Abrupt reduction in shipping emission as an inadvertent geoengineering termination shock produces substantial radiative warming, Yuan et al., Communications Earth & Environment: Human activities affect the Earth’s climate through modifying the composition of the atmosphere, which then creates radiative forcing that drives climate change. The warming effect ...
    1 week ago
  • Fragments
    The best observation I’ve read this week about the deep, profound harm Trump is doingTrump has hurled threats and smears at witnesses, jurors and the judge (including his family)... [he] has tried to intimidate witnesses and delegitimize the New York courts as corrupt. In continuing to incite his mob (that ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    1 week ago
  • March for Nature
    Do do do do do do do doDo do do do do doDi di di di di di di di di di diNature enter me…In 2018 the Labour lead government banned new oil and gas exploration in Aotearoa. A change welcomed by those who care deeply for our environment and ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    1 week ago
  • Bernard’s Dawn Chorus and pick ‘n’ mix for Thursday, June 6
    The Transport Minister is trying to push through urgent legislation that would allow him to change emissions standards for car imports without approval from Parliament, after only consulting car importers. Photo: Lynn GrievesonTL;DR: Just as two major reports showed fossil fuel burning was warming the planet to dangerous levels and ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    1 week ago
  • A Better Broadway: Act 2
    This is a guest post by reader Grant A, the second of a pair about how to fix Broadway. If you missed the beginning of the show, here’s the link to Act 1 from yesterday. Yesterday, I discussed changing traffic circulation around Broadway in Newmarket. This included implementing a car-free ...
    Greater AucklandBy Guest Post
    1 week ago
  • National breaks another health promise
    National has broken another manifesto health promise, apparently to save only $550,000. It will now train an additional 25 med students next year rather than the 50 it promised. This comes on top of the delays caused by National’s coalition partners in pushing ahead with the Waikato Medical School and ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    1 week ago
  • Climate Adam: Coping as the world’s best known climate scientist
    This video includes conclusions of the creator climate scientist Dr. Adam Levy. It is presented to our readers as an informed perspective. Please see video description for references (if any). Katharine Hayhoe is quite possibly the world's most famous climate scientist. She's produced wide ranging research, and communicated climate change with ...
    1 week ago
  • SIS “evidence” isn’t, again
    Back in 2016, then-Internal Affairs Minister Peter Dunne cancelled a New Zealand woman's passport, claiming she was a terrorist. The basis for his decision was a secret briefing by the SIS, which claimed that if she was allowed to travel, the woman would "engage with individuals who encourage acts of ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • As Low As You Go
    Taking you as low as you goAs low as you goA sense of Déjà vu this morning. How many times have I begun a newsletter, “just when you thought they couldn’t go any lower…” Only for the groundhog to reappear, more pissed off than the day before.Another day with headlines ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    1 week ago
  • Bernard's Dawn Chorus and pick 'n' mix for Wednesday June 5
    TL;DR: The public health costs of human-caused air pollution in Aotearoa-NZ is estimated at $38.8 billion a year because it kills 3,300 people each year, which is almost ten times more than the death toll on roads from accidents. Yet the Ministry for the Environment has just one staff member ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    1 week ago
  • A Better Broadway: Act 1
    This is the first of a two-part guest post by Grant A, a long time reader and commenter with a keen interest in all things urban, especially cycling and public transport. He’s been thinking about how to fix Broadway. Stay tuned for Act 2! Readers might remember the pre-Christmas traffic snarl-ups in ...
    Greater AucklandBy Guest Post
    1 week ago
  • Road trance
    Sometimes technology is your friend and sometimes it can’t be bothered with you. Once you’re away from home and your dependable wifi, well, there’s no telling what will happen. I’ve been going in and out of high-speed and low-speed no-speed Internet pockets all over England and France and look, I’m ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    1 week ago
  • You Can't Undo Fake News
    Hi,I’ve been thinking a lot about Corey Harris, the 44-year old man who went viral after Zooming into his court appearance while driving. The headlines generated were basically all the same: “Man With Suspended Driver's License Dials Into Court Hearing While Driving”. The headlines said it all, and most people ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    1 week ago
  • At a glance – CO2 is the main driver of climate change
    On February 14, 2023 we announced our Rebuttal Update Project. This included an ask for feedback about the added "At a glance" section in the updated basic rebuttal versions. This weekly blog post series highlights this new section of one of the updated basic rebuttal versions and serves as a ...
    1 week ago

  • Government delivers landmark specialist schools investment
    The coalition Government is delivering record levels of targeted investment in specialist schools so children with additional needs can thrive. As part of Budget 24, $89 million has been ringfenced to redevelop specialist facilities and increase satellite classrooms for students with high needs. This includes: $63 million in depreciation funding ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 hours ago
  • Major health and safety consultation begins
    A substantial consultation on work health and safety will begin today with a roadshow across the regions over the coming months, says Workplace Relations and Safety Minister Brooke van Velden.  This the first step to deliver on the commitment to reforming health and safety law and regulations, set out in ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 hours ago
  • Growing the potential of New Zealand’s forestry sector in partnership
    Forestry Minister Todd McClay, today announced the start of the Government’s plan to restore certainty and confidence in the forestry and wood processing sector. “This government will drive investment to unlock the industry’s economic potential for growth,” Mr McClay says. “Forestry’s success is critical to rebuilding New Zealand’s economy, boosting ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 hours ago
  • Government cancels forestry ETS annual service charges for 2023-24
    Annual service charges in the forestry Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS) will be cancelled for 2023/24, Forestry Minister Todd McClay says. “The sector has told me the costs imposed on forestry owners by the previous government were excessive and unreasonable and I agree,” Mr McClay says. “They have said that there ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 hours ago
  • Speech to the LGNZ Infrastructure Symposium
    Introduction Thank you for having me here today and welcome to Wellington, the home of the Hurricanes, the next Super Rugby champions. Infrastructure – the challenge This government has inherited a series of big challenges in infrastructure. I don’t need to tell an audience as smart as this one that ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 hours ago
  • Government boosts Agriculture and food trade with China
    Trade and Agriculture Minister Todd McClay and Food Safety Minister Andrew Hoggard welcomed outcomes to boost agricultural and food trade between New Zealand and China. A number of documents were signed today at Government House that will improve the business environment between New Zealand and China, and help reduce barriers, including on infant formula ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    22 hours ago
  • NZ and China launch Services Trade Negotiations
    Trade Minister Todd McClay, and China’s Commerce Minister Wang Wentao, today announced the official launch of Negotiations on Services Trade between the two countries.  “The Government is focused on opening doors for services exporters to grow the New Zealand’s economy,” Mr McClay says.  As part of the 2022 New Zealand-China Free Trade Agreement Upgrade ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    22 hours ago
  • Prime Minister Luxon meets with Premier Li
    Prime Minister Christopher Luxon met with Chinese Premier Li Qiang at Government House in Wellington today.  “I was pleased to welcome Premier Li to Wellington for his first official visit, which marks 10 years since New Zealand and China established a Comprehensive Strategic Partnership,” Mr Luxon says. “The Premier and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    22 hours ago
  • Government and business tackling gender pay gap
    The coalition Government is taking action to reduce the gender pay gap in New Zealand through the development of a voluntary calculation tool. “Gender pay gaps have impacted women for decades, which is why we need to continue to drive change in New Zealand,” Acting Minister for Women Louise Upston ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    24 hours ago
  • Funding Boost for Rural Support Trusts
    The coalition Government is boosting funding for Rural Support Trusts to provide more help to farmers and growers under pressure, Rural Communities Minister Mark Patterson announced today. “A strong and thriving agricultural sector is crucial to the New Zealand economy and one of the ways to support it is to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Latest data shows size of public service decreasing
    Spending on contractors and consultants continues to fall and the size of the Public Service workforce has started to decrease after years of growth, according to the latest data released today by the Public Service Commission. Workforce data for the quarter from 31 December 23 to 31 March 24 shows ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Speech to the Law Association
    Thank you to the Law Association for inviting me to speak this morning. As a former president under its previous name — the Auckland District Law Society — I take particular satisfaction in seeing this organisation, and its members, in such good heart. As Attorney-General, I am grateful for these ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • 25 years on, NZ reaffirms enduring friendship with Timor Leste
    New Zealand is committed to working closely with Timor-Leste to support its prosperity and resilience, Foreign Minister Winston Peters says.   “This year is the 25th anniversary of New Zealand sending peacekeepers to Timor-Leste, who contributed to the country’s stabilisation and ultimately its independence,” Mr Peters says.    “A quarter ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Inquiry requested into rural banking
    Promoting robust competition in the banking sector is vital to rebuilding the economy, Finance Minister Nicola Willis says.  “New Zealanders deserve a banking sector that is as competitive as possible. Banking services play an important role in our communities and in the economy. Kiwis rely on access to lending when ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Ministry for Regulation targets red tape to keep farmers and growers competitive
    Regulation Minister David Seymour, Environment Minister Penny Simmonds, and Food Safety Minister Andrew Hoggard have today announced a regulatory sector review on the approval process for new agricultural and horticultural products.    “Red tape stops farmers and growers from getting access to products that have been approved by other OECD countries. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Government to reverse blanket speed limit reductions
    The Coalition Government will reverse Labour’s blanket speed limit reductions by 1 July 2025 through a new Land Transport Rule released for public consultation today, Transport Minister Simeon Brown says.  The draft speed limit rule will deliver on the National-ACT coalition commitment to reverse the previous government’s blanket speed limit ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Chair appointments for NZSO, CNZ and NZ On Air
    Minister Paul Goldsmith is making major leadership changes within both his Arts and Media portfolios. “I am delighted to announce Carmel Walsh will be officially stepping into the role of Chair of the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra, having been acting Chair since April,” Arts Minister Paul Goldsmith says.  “Carmel is ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Government focus on long-term food, fibre growth
    Food and fibre export revenue is tipped to reach $54.6 billion this year and hit a record $66.6b in 2028 as the Government focuses on getting better access to markets and cutting red tape, Agriculture Minister Todd McClay and Oceans and Fisheries Minister Shane Jones say. “This achievement is testament ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Govt consulting on cutting red tape for exporters
    A new export exemption proposal for food businesses demonstrates the coalition Government’s commitment to reducing regulatory barriers for industry and increasing the value of New Zealand exports, which gets safe New Zealand food to more markets, says Food Safety Minister Andrew Hoggard.  “The coalition Government has listened to the concerns ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • New Zealand and Philippines elevating relationship
    New Zealand and Philippines are continuing to elevate our relationship, Foreign Minister Winston Peters says.   “The leaders of New Zealand and Philippines agreed in April 2024 to lift our relationship to a Comprehensive Partnership by 2026,” Mr Peters says. “Our visit to Manila this week has been an excellent ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Paid Parental Leave increase to help families
    Workplace Relations and Safety Minister, Brooke van Velden says paid parental leave increase from 1 July will put more money in the pockets of Kiwi parents and give them extra support as they take precious time off to bond with their newborns. The increase takes effect from 1 July 2024 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Defence increases UN Command commitment
    The number of New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF) personnel deployed to the Republic of Korea is increasing, Defence Minister Judith Collins and Foreign Minister Winston Peters announced today.  NZDF will deploy up to 41 additional personnel to the Republic of Korea, increasing the size of its contribution to the United ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • New Zealand to attend 'Summit on Peace in Ukraine' in Switzerland
    New Zealand will be represented at the Summit on Peace in Ukraine by Minister Mark Mitchell in Switzerland later this week.    “New Zealand strongly supports Ukraine’s efforts to build a comprehensive, just, and lasting peace,” Foreign Minister Winston Peters says.   “Minister Mitchell is a senior Cabinet Minister and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Big step forward for M.bovis programme
    Farmers’ hard work is paying off in the fight against Mycoplasma bovis (M. bovis) with the move to a national pest management plan marking strong progress in the eradication effort, says Biosecurity Minister Andrew Hoggard.  “The plan, approved by the Coalition Government, was proposed by the programme partners DairyNZ, Beef ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Build To Rent opening welcomed by Housing Minister
    Prime Minister Christopher Luxon and Housing Minister Chris Bishop formally opened a new Build to Rent development in Mt Wellington this morning. “The Prime Minister and I were honoured to cut the ribbon of Resido, New Zealand’s largest Build to Rent development to date.  “Build to Rent housing, like the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Agriculture to come out of the ETS
    The Government will deliver on its election commitment to take agriculture out of the New Zealand Emissions Trading Scheme (NZ ETS) and will establish a new Pastoral Sector Group to constructively tackle biogenic methane, Coalition Government Agriculture and Climate Change Ministers say. Agriculture Minister Todd McClay says New Zealand farmers ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Luxon Tokyo-bound for political and business visit
    Prime Minister Christopher Luxon will travel to Japan from 16-20 June, his first visit as Prime Minister.   “Japan is incredibly important to New Zealand's prosperity. It is the world’s fourth largest economy, and our fourth largest export destination.  “As you know, growing the economy is my number one priority. A strong economy means ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Bayly travels to Singapore for scam prevention meetings
    Minister of Commerce and Consumer Affairs, Andrew Bayly, travels to Singapore today to attend scam and fraud prevention meetings. “Scams are a growing international problem, and we are not immune in New Zealand. Organised criminal networks operate across borders, and we need to work with our Asia-Pacific partners to tackle ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • More help for homeowners impacted by severe weather
    People who were displaced by severe weather events in 2022 and 2023 will be supported by the extension of Temporary Accommodation Assistance through to 30 June 2025. Social Development and Employment Minister Louise Upston says the coalition Government is continuing to help to those who were forced out of their ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Government to reverse oil and gas exploration ban
    Removing the ban on petroleum exploration beyond onshore Taranaki is part of a suite of proposed amendments to the Crown Minerals Act to deal with the energy security challenges posed by rapidly declining natural gas reserves, Resources Minister Shane Jones says. “Natural gas is critical to keeping our lights on ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • New Zealand and Malaysia to intensify connections
    New Zealand and Malaysia intend to intensify their long-standing, deep connections, Foreign Minister Winston Peters says.    “Malaysia is one of New Zealand’s oldest friends in South-East Asia – and both countries intend to get more out of the relationship," Mr Peters says.   "Our connections already run deep and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Ending contracted emergency housing motels in Rotorua
    The end of Contracted Emergency Housing (CEH) motels in Rotorua is nearing another milestone as the Ministry of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) announces it will not renew consents for six of the original 13 motels, Associate Housing Minister Tama Potaka says. The government is committed to stop using CEH ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • First Home Grant closure exemptions
    The Government is providing a narrow exemption from the discontinuation of the First Home Grant for first home buyers who may face unfair situations as a result, Housing Minister Chris Bishop says. “The First Home Grant scheme was closed with immediate effect on 22 May 2024, with savings being reprioritised ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Faster consenting for flood protection projects in Hawke's Bay
    Work to increase flood resilience in Hawke’s Bay can start sooner, thanks to a new fast consenting process, Minister for Emergency Management and Recovery Mark Mitchell and Environment Minister Penny Simmonds say.  “Faster consenting means work to build stop banks, spillways and other infrastructure can get underway sooner, increasing flood ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Judge Craig Coxhead and Nathan Milner newest Māori Land Court appointments
    Tangata tū tangata ora, tangata noho tangata mate. Minister for Māori Development Tama Potaka today announced acting Deputy Chief Judge Craig Coxhead as the new Deputy Chief Judge, and Nathan Milner as Judge of the Māori Land Court. "I want to congratulate Judge Coxhead and Mr Milner on their appointments ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Government signs Indo-Pacific Economic agreements to boost trade
    Trade Minister Todd McClay and Climate Change Minister Simon Watts, today signed three Indo Pacific Economic Framework (IPEF) agreements that will boost investment, grow New Zealand’s digital and green economies and increase trade between New Zealand and the 14 IPEF partners. IPEF’s partners represent 40 per cent of global GDP ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Government signs Indo-Pacific Economic agreements to boost trade and cooperation
    Trade Minister Todd McClay and Climate Change Minister Simon Watts, today signed three Indo Pacific Economic Framework (IPEF) agreements that will boost investment, grow New Zealand’s digital and green economies and increase trade between New Zealand and the 14 IPEF partners. IPEF’s partners represent 40 per cent of global GDP ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Visit to Viet Nam strengthens ties
    New Zealand and Viet Nam are focused on strengthening cooperation by making progress on mutually beneficial opportunities, Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters says. “Viet Nam matters enormously to New Zealand," Mr Peters says. "Our countries enjoy broad cooperation, in such areas as defence, security, trade, education and tourism. We are ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Government delivers funding boost to fix potholes
    The Coalition Government is delivering on its commitment to boost funding for pothole prevention, with indicative funding levels confirmed by NZTA showing a record increase in funding to help fix potholes on our State Highways and Local Roads, Transport Minister Simeon Brown says.  The NZTA Board has today confirmed indicative ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Government making fuel resilience a priority
    The Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment will halt work on procuring reserve diesel stock and explore other ways to bolster New Zealand’s diesel resilience, Associate Energy Minister Shane Jones says. The Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE) will also begin work on changes to the minimum fuel stockholding ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago

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