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That 5% threshold and recent polling

Written By: - Date published: 4:09 pm, August 18th, 2017 - 86 comments
Categories: election 2017, greens, MMP, polls - Tags:

Cross posted from lemattjuste.wordpress.com


There has been some discussion on Twitter recently about how to describe what happens if the Greens don’t clear the 5% threshold, which is beginning to look like a real possibility and not just right-wing trolling. To illustrate this, I’m going to use the results of the recent Colmar Brunton poll, but I don’t actually think it’s definitive yet that the Greens are really polling below 5%1.

You will know if you’ve followed my blog since last election, or have seen my commentary from previous blogs or elsewhere online from even earlier, that I am very opposed to New Zealand’s current threshold, and believe it should be lowered to somewhere around 0.8%. (the amount to win a single list seat outright) These facts bear obligatory mention because we shouldn’t even need to have this discussion, as the Greens have enough support that they shouldn’t risk going under the threshold.

Back to the topic at hand, the first and most simple way to describe what happens if the Greens don’t clear the threshold is that essentially every Green vote doesn’t count, so is ignored for determining who wins List seats. It’s still worth voting even if you don’t want to give your Party vote to anyone else, as 4.3% (+/-1.25%) is well within the margin of error for getting over the threshold, and I think it’s likely that any polls that surveyed later than this one will probably show the beginnings of a rebound. The recent low Green polling seems to be largely (but not entirely) attributable to the Jacinda effect. A month, as this campaign has shown, is an incredibly long time in an election campaign.

The second description is regarding what happens to the seats. Let’s, for a moment, pretend that there is no threshold in New Zealand. (because that’s roughly what Parliament should look like at every election. You can also call this the “Green Party wins Nelson” scenario, if you like) This is what the recent Colmar Brunton poll would indicate, assuming Dunne loses in Ōhāriu, and Seymour wins in Epsom, and either Marama Fox or Te Ururoa Flavell wins an electorate:

CBpollaugAct: 1 seat
National: 55 seats
New Zealand First: 12 seats
Māori Party: 2 seats
Labour: 46 seats
Green: 5 seats
Total: 121 seats, 61 seats needed to govern

I’ll get to how this is calculated in a minute, but the upshot of this is that the Greens would win the 11th, 34th, 58th, 80th, and 102nd seats in Parliament. (Yes, each one is calculated separately)

If we add the threshold back in, we get the following results:

ACT: 1
National: 56
New Zealand First: 13
Māori Party: 3
Labour: 48
(Total/government threshold both as above)

Note that National, the Māori Party, and NZF each get a seat that “should” belong to the Greens, making things even easier for them in coalition negotiations. Labour gets 2. It is a little bizarre that National should ever get any seats that “belong” to the Greens, but by ignoring under-threshold votes, that means the seats are re-allocated somewhat proportionally.

Things are even more complicated, of course, than where the seats go, as you may have noticed that one of the Greens’ seats went to the Māori Party when we implemented the threshold rule, when they really didn’t have enough of the vote to warrant it. This is because the system we use in New Zealand isn’t actually governed by percentage of the vote.

CBpollaugslcalc

This is the third way to describe what happens if a party falls under the Threshold- to get into the weeds on what the Sainte-Laguë method (a mathematical system for allocating items using divisors) actually means. The image is a snapshot of my spreadsheet running the numbers for the seat calculation above (it’s a little primitive, I haven’t automatically coded it to cut off under-threshold parties yet, instead I just manually guarantee certain parties likely to win their electorates one seat in formulas, but it suffices with a little bit of checking-over for ties, (note there are two 116th seats here, those work fine as it will skip rank 117 in the formulas, but if there’s a tie for 120th it doesn’t note that, as there would be a tie-breaker then and it’s important to know who might lose a seat)

Essentially, we start off with the raw votes (it’s currently showing percentages multiplied by 1000, because it’s showing polling numbers, but in reality the first National Party number might by 1,000,000 or so) for each party, then we divide them by 3, by 5, by 7, and so on, until we’re satisfied we have a long enough list of numbers. (that’s usually by the time we get to dividing by 125 or so, which allows for 63 MPs for the largest party. If you were genuinely expecting a landslide you might go to) We then go through that list, and pick the largest number that hasn’t got an MP yet, and give that party the first MP, then the next largest for the second MP, all the way until we’ve got 1202. Because it’s sequential, it’s a little different to divvying up those seats according to the percentage of the total valid votes for over-threshold parties, as it doesn’t always exactly “round” the same way you would if you were looking at raw percentages of 120 seats.

If a party falls below 5%, we essentially just don’t bother to calculate their numbers for the list, and they get no seats allocated even though if we plugged them into the calculation they would likely be entitled to a fair number.

This divisor method is very friendly to small parties who aren’t discluded, but pretty proportional for parties that are polling in double digits. This is why I generally advocate for a 0.8% threshold- removing the threshold altogether would likely have awarded a seat to satire parties if people voted like they currently do, which seems a reasonable cutoff to me. There’s also something inherently fair about making it hard to win that first seat, but easier to grow larger from there.

So, in conclusion: don’t panic yet, and even if this poll result is real, there is plenty of reason to keep voting for the Greens, it just means there’s more campaigning to do, not the least is that if they don’t secure that 5%, my vote and plenty of other people’s votes won’t be counted towards changing the government, as I’m not Party voting Labour this election under any circumstances. And I won’t even start in the main article about the whole “I’m voting Labour so they’ll be large enough to form a Government” mess3.


Before your Regularly Scheduled Annotations, I will make a brief apology for not talking about other recent events in a timely fashion. I’ve had stuff going on personally that put me off writing about politics online for a while, but it’s now sorted.

1 Firstly, because the margin of error has plenty of room above 5%,
Secondly because this is only the first poll showing that and you need at least two polls to confirm this sort of thing, and
Thirdly because the Colmar Brunton is one of the least friendly polls to the Left in general, with Reid Research’s one coming in a close second, ie. TV news polls slant a bit to the right on average. That’s not to say they’re hugely likely to be out by more than the margin of error, but it is to say that they are more right-wing than the overall polling trend.

That said, Green supporters who want them in Parliament, and Labour supporters who don’t want Green votes wasted should be acting strategically right now as if this result is exactly as disastrous as it looks because you can’t afford to waste time when you might dip below the threshold.

There are likely several things going on here- I suspect the biggest one is that Ardern’s popularity is letting Labour eat a lot of the left and centre vote. This poll also started in the period where Metiria’s resignation was fresh, and a lot of the newer and lower-information Green supporters may have gotten the impression from bad news coverage that the Party had pushed her into resigning, rather than that she did so because she could no longer bear the disproportionately severe media attention on her private life. Add to that circular coverage regarding poll results, and it’s no surprise that this result was even worse than the previous one; I had expected polls to go down before coming back up, and I am genuinely hopeful that this will be the lowest poll the Greens will get in the campaign.

2 Or less if any independent MPs are elected. For instance if Raf Manji defeats Gerry Brownlee in Epsom, only 119 list seats will be allocated, as independents reduce the proportional size of Parliament instead of creating overhangs like electorate parties do. I’ll probably talk about this some more in an upcoming post, as I think it’s actually a bit of a silly rule.

3 I will of course concede that there are genuine reasons one might vote for Labour. Thinking they need to be the largest party in order to form the government is not one of them. It’s actually far more important that you give your vote to the party you want to have the strongest voice in government or opposition, rather than to the one you think is most likely to be the biggest party in the type of government you would like.

86 comments on “That 5% threshold and recent polling”

  1. mpledger 1

    The Greens will bounce back.

    Some people will have taken the media’s side on the Metiria Turei debate and switched their vote from Greens but on reflection they’ll begin to see it’s a beat-up and switch back again.

    They’ll also be sympathetic to the Greens environmental philosophy and will want to keep that in parliament and so they will switch back to get them over 5 (which will put them well over 5).

    But it may be quite volatile for a while until things settle down.

    • I believe so too, but I think it’s important to ground that sort of thing about polling. There shouldn’t be any doubt that the Greens have taken it hit- whether it’s temporary or not, and whether that’s Colmar Brunton being a bit off or not, is certainly up for debate.

    • Ed1 1.2

      I agree – there will be people that vote Green rather than another party just to ensure those votes are not wasted. Didn’t something like that happen with NZ First at a previous election? I also agree that the 5% threshold should be reduced, but there do seem to be some bizarre potential results in the complex formuae then used. Perhaps a wider fix is needed. Has any party talked about at least investigating changing the MP system? If so I would also include the right for people to register at any time right up to and including election day. The worst that could happen is that the count takes a bit longer. And also to reverse the changes National pushed through to disenfranchise many prisoners.

      • The Sainte-Lague method is actually pretty close to just looking at the percentage of the countable vote each party receives and rounding it. Most deviations from that happen when there are parties with 1-3 seats, so it’s pretty friendly to say, the Māori Party or ACT, but not really distorting proportionality much with regards to NZF or the Greens.

        I know most of the electoral reform advocates ended up in the Green Party, but I don’t think anyone has any official policies on electoral reform atm. I will canvass though as I am writing about that soon. The only recent electoral reform policy I remember was Labour’s old commitment from 2014 that they wanted to ditch electorate lifeboats and lower the threshold to 4%.

    • bwaghorn 1.3

      yeap they are a solid 8% party , bet my LAST CIDER on it

  2. esoteric pineapples 2

    “Always vote for principle, though you may vote alone, and you may cherish the sweetest reflection that your vote is never lost.” – John Quincy Adams, sixth President of the United States from 1825 to 1829.

  3. Apologies for not catching the fact that NZF isn’t labelled in the graph btw, (Well, they actually are, it’s just the text is coloured the same shade of grey and is over their section of the pie. With a larger Green vote this didn’t happen, and I didn’t notice it at the time of posting) they were 12 seats as per the text. I should probably have put a bit more manual effort into making sure the labels were easily visible.

  4. Peter 4

    Unfortunately, the Greens have now lost their moral high ground.
    They are now seen to have feet of clay, just like all the other political parties.

    • In Vino 4.1

      Only among the superficial.

    • Katipo 4.2

      The recent Metiria, Green, ‘welfare blugers’ hate seems to be been trending during the past 30years of social experimentation, empathy is in short supply. I think it’s due to how neolib policies set up a positive (as in increasing) feedback loop with people’s inherent ‘Actor-Observer bias’.
      Hopefully the positive Jacinda message will galvanize those on on the left to get out and vote, to help turn the judgemental meaness around. If we keep down this path, at best, we will continue treading water and at worst, we only need to look at somewhere like the US.
      https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2017/jul/05/us-inequality-poor-people-bad-choices-wealthy-bias

  5. Andre 5

    Matthew, why have you got 121 seats in both your scenarios? Where’s the overhang seat coming from, if you’re assuming Dunne is done?

    ACT is still likely to get over 0.5ish %, so Seymour won’t be an overhang.

    • It’s probable that ACT will have some of the remainder 0.7%, but CB haven’t released their full results yet, so I have assumed ACT will be an overhang for now. Labour would lose a seat to ACT if I recall correctly if they were to qualify for a list seat.

      (TOP is also under threshold at 2%)

  6. Sans Cle 6

    Thanks for this post. Very informative, regarding allocation of list seats.

  7. Ad 7

    ” It’s actually far more important that you give your vote to the party you want to have the strongest voice in government or opposition, rather than to the one you think is most likely to be the biggest party in the type of government you would like.”

    Really.
    Spare me the repetititve prose poem about your principles, and vote something that will actually BE the government. Don’t be the salt: be the main course and you can forget all the futile righteous minority victim behaviour altogether.

    • DoublePlusGood 7.1

      Uh, what? People should vote for the party they want in parliament. Not who they think will be the largest party so they can say they voted for the winner.

    • Listen, I want the Greens to be the party of the left in the future. But to get there you have to change people’s minds about FPP mentality or they’ll keep voting Labour or Bust, or flocking to a Strong Leader all the time.

      Also, why discuss politics at all if not to share your values? It’s a pretty uncontroversial statement that, ideally speaking, the electoral system should allow people to vote for the person or party that they legitimately want to win. I’m for further electoral reform beyond MMP, so it’s as much a statement about how voting should work as it is about what voters should do with their vote.

      • Ad 7.2.1

        This is MMP. The Greens are within margin of error of fucked. Forget your principles. Welcome to the age of compromise – you’ll love it after a good shower.

        Vote to change the government.

        Vote Labour.

        • DoublePlusGood 7.2.1.1

          If the Greens were out, then Labour wouldn’t get to decide who forms the government, New Zealand First in.

          So stop bloody bagging the Greens with hysterical arguments.

          • red-blooded 7.2.1.1.1

            Hey, I want the Greens in parliament and in government. I have to say, though, that when it comes to bagging the other party in the MOU, Greens supporters pour shit all over Labour on this site regularly. I quite often speak up about it.

            Ad’s comment isn’t bagging the Greens, anyway. Where’s the criticism? He/she is just talking tactics under MMP. Maybe you disagree with the comment, or maybe you follow Ad’s commentary and see a motive I don’t, but on the face of it I’d say you’re over-reacting.

          • Wayne 7.2.1.1.2

            There are virtually no circumstances where the Greens (assuming they get more than 5%) decide the government.
            That situation belongs to New Zealand First as has been clearly apparent from the polls for over a year.
            Now, even if the Greens do get in they will be relegated to the margins, since they almost certainly will be weaker than NZF.
            As you have seen it is relatively easy for Labour to take the voter friendly Green policies (water, trains, light rail and no doubt others).
            And there will be plenty in Labours core team who will prefer NZF as the sole partner. Much easier to work with since they are more pragmatic than the Greens who will always want to make a stand on some issue or another. They would be a real headache in government.

            • WILD KATIPO 7.2.1.1.2.1

              As an old Jim Anderton era Alliance voter I will be voting Green just to annoy duffers like you Wayne. Was going to vote Labour under Little but I reckon they will stand on their own now , and the Greens will be in some form of coalition with them despite the naysayers .

              And guess what ?… if my vote goes to shore up the Left ,… my vote will never be wasted.

              Ultimate goal? edge out the neo liberals and help turn the tide back to a Keynesian based social democracy. Just like the one we used to have when we were a prosperous nation before Douglas. Sound cool?

              I think so.

              • BM

                Do you honestly believe you’re going to see change under Ardern, mate she’s the lefts “smile and wave”.

                There will be no boat rocking, Neo-Liberalism is here to stay for the foreseeable future.

                • In Vino

                  Thank you concern troll BM. But I agree with Wild Katipo. The more votes for Green, the closer we come to the eventual purging of the neoliberal evil that is a pox upon the face of our current society. Hope you like that phrase.

                • … ” Neo-Liberalism is here to stay for the foreseeable future ” …

                  L0L !

                  I guess you are right , however, its seems to be coming in for quite a bollocking as of late… you know ,… Brexit , Trump etc…

                  And … especially when the IMF came right out and stated ‘ neo liberalism is a failure’…

                  Do you have a few mates in the IMF that you could have a quick yarn with for us , BM ? ,… we’d just like to clear a few things up…

                  But don’t panic yet , mate.. yes we are a small easily manipulated, biased media far from all the rest of the action country , and yes,… it does take a little time for us to catch up … so you’re OK ,… you have a little time left to feel secure, I guess…

              • Tamati Tautuhi

                100% right Wild Katipo in the 1970’s we were in the top 5 in the OECD until the National’s Mad Piglet got hold of the cheque book and the country’s finances and assets, followed up by Labour’s Lange & Douglas with the quick fire sale of NZ State Assets to their cronies ?

              • Wayne

                The Greens will be like the Alliance in govt. They will blow apart themselves on some issue just like the Alliance did over Afghanistan. At least Jim Anderson knew NZ could not stand apart on such an issue.
                It is for that kind of reason why Labour will prefer NZF to the Greens. A safer and more predictable bet in the serious business of government.

                • You’re so up yourself – serious business of government lol and where has it got us. Climate change do nothings, pollution do nothings, poverty do nothings, inequality do nothings. Waste of time that has made personal fortunes on the degradation of so many things. But business made money. Your attitude shows why the system must be changed and the Greens can begin that.

                • Anne

                  You’re not taking into account The Greens are a different party at a different time with different personalities involved. Jim Anderton was a somewhat bullying and polarising leader in those days – a far cry from the milder and non strident James Shaw. Also, the Alliance Party was a mishmash of several smaller parties which came from different social and political backgrounds. It was inevitable they would eventually “blow apart”.

                • Stuart Munro

                  Terrible thing principles – good job you have none eh. But how can you represent a constituency that does have them except by deceit?

            • Matthew Whitehead 7.2.1.1.2.2

              1) You assume that “deciding the government” is the point of being in Parliament as a list party. That is not necessarily true, and is definitely not the Green Party’s focus. The Greens are quite happy to take a political beating for policy wins, as we have seen recently. It’s the policy change that’s the important part.

              2) It’s still a month out. I wouldn’t assume anything regarding the relative positions of the Greens and NZ First just yet.

              3) Why vote for a pale imitation when you can get real Greens that are driving policy change through both Labour and National governments, without even once being in coalition? *shrug* Labour are doing well right now because the media get obsessed over “strong leaders” and their coverage drives attitudes for some low-information voters. We’ll see if that sticks, but as long as the Greens hang on above the threshold, I’m not particularly worried about a temporary Labour ascendancy in the polls.

              NZ First are not pragmatists. They might, arguably, be political realists, but that is a different thing. The Greens are in fact focused on pragmatism over ideology, which is why, for instance, they haven’t ruled out working with NZ First in the future, despite significant pressure on their left flank to do so.

              It is true that right now NZ First are in the kingmaker position. But if the bleed from National accelerates at any point, they are in serious trouble, as they are getting closer and closer to not even being able to go into coalition with just NZF.

        • marty mars 7.2.1.2

          Right so it isn’t just the right that want the Greens gone. Yawn – the Green base is above 5% AND now is the time to work very hard to reinforce that.

          I’d also like the electoral system to be further reformed especially a lowering of the threshold. Thanks for this post. The only ones panicing are the right wingers and so they should be imo.

          • One Anonymous Bloke 7.2.1.2.1

            I think Ad’s panicking that Labour plus Greens will be able to form a government.

            • marty mars 7.2.1.2.1.1

              He’s sounding like hooton – I hope he doesn’t do a complete cv on us.

            • Ad 7.2.1.2.1.2

              Labour are panicking. That’s so last month.
              Top work.

              Greens need to get to work. – just to survive.

              Get to work.

            • weka 7.2.1.2.1.3

              The other person I saw today going hard on vote Labour, destroy the Greens was Phil Quinn.

              • Anne

                Oh hell, he’s back in the mix? I suppose that means Josie Pagani is also back in the picture. Talk of fair weather friends. When the going’s tough they can’t wait to sling the arrows. When the tide turns they want to be back in the fold. What’s the bet they will try to take some credit for the change.

                I don’t think Jacinda will be fooled by them.

                • weka

                  Just some minor blather on twitter but he was explicit on wanting the Greens exterminated. Not that that’s new, but the lines are being drawn along with the knives and it’s not just the Hooton’s that are the problem.

                  I hope you are right about Labour (I expect you are).

              • BM

                Quinn is an ex Labourite.

                Weka, it’s not the right trying to take out the Greens, it’s Labour they’re going for the kill, they’ve decided to copy the same strategy that National used to destroy ACT.

                Far better for the Left to have one large party with the Greens just there to make up the numbers, this power sharing stuff was never going to work, I can honestly see the Greens disappearing unless they develop the ability to bridge both sides of the political spectrum.

                • weka

                  In other words, you want the GP to disappear.

                  Labour will do whatever they can to maximise their vote. I don’t blame them for that. But it’s not enough for the left to just have Labour, because there are things that Labour simply won’t do.

                  “I can honestly see the Greens disappearing unless they develop the ability to bridge both sides of the political spectrum.”

                  What, work with National? We’ve been over this a thousand times BM. The members get to decide positioning in the bigger picture, and if the caucus went with National it would destroy the party because the party wants a left wing position.

                  • BM

                    I don’t want the Greens to disappear I want the left vote to be as splintered as all possible.
                    While it’s like that the left hasn’t got a shit show of being elected.

                    • weka

                      in other words, we can now treat all your concern trolling as bollocks. Thanks for that, I’ll link from now on 😆

                    • If that wasn’t concern trolling, it was certainly poor electoral strategy, as spreading the same amount of votes between two parties tends to get more seats than over just one party, lol.

                  • JustPassingThrough

                    An environmental party should be neither left wing or right and should support the party whose environmental policies they most agree with.

        • You don’t get to tell me how to vote, Ad. Under no circumstances. Especially not when I have already told you who I am voting for in the main post and that I don't plan to compromise on it, and I have also laid out that I am an electoral reform advocate who thinks that enforced compromise beyond the level of "well, I don't like any option but this one is my best choice" is a sign of a broken system.

          It's rude and it borders on bullying.

          PS: I am voting two ticks Green. 😛

        • Psycho Milt 7.2.1.4

          Vote to change the government.

          Vote Labour.

          Even if we take this poll at face value, that’s 4.3% of the vote removed from the left and redistributed to other parties, something like 40% of them going to National. You’re effectively advocating for National here.

          • weka 7.2.1.4.1

            Or he’d prefer Lab/NZF over Lab/Green

          • Matthew Whitehead 7.2.1.4.2

            That’s not actually how seat allocation works. No vote for a party trying to change the government can actively help National. The worst that can happen is that it isn’t counted, and even then, sending a message that your party is near 5% can be important- we saw that when NZ First was kicked out of Parliament for a term on a 4.5%ish result, and then returned next term.

            I wouldn’t count the Greens out even if they do get an under-threshold result, as it will be at least as plausible for them to manage to get back as it was for NZ First.

            • dukeofurl 7.2.1.4.2.1

              Yes it is how it works.

              A 4.3% vote which is under the threshold, means 45% ( depending on final result) of that goes to national.

              of course the ‘lost votes’ in totality are accumulated, so it might be 6-8% depending how many are lost to TOP as well. Its telling that there is no right wing party running like last time, the nationals made sure of that with their destruction of Colin Craig and his big funders

              • …you do know that I’m about as big an expert you can get on election systems for someone who doesn’t have an actual degree or professional experience with them, right? You’re essentially preaching to a theology major here, to repurpose a metaphor.

                It’s not how it works. It might have a similar effect, but it’s not how it works.

                Under-threshold votes are not redistributed. They are effectively discarded. What are redistributed, when compared to a List or MMP system without thresholds, are the seats that would have been awarded to an under-threshold party. This is not the same thing as your vote actively helping National. It is your vote passively helping National by not being counted for seat allocation. It is in effect exactly the same as not voting, except everyone else can see how close or far away from the threshold your party were, if they want to, which means you might have a better or worse chance next election.

                The Conservatives are still running, by the way. They’re just not going to get a significant result this time.

      • Sans Cle 7.2.2

        Matthew, could single transferable voting, (preferential ranking) work outside of constituency vote?
        Any reason why it wouldn’t work in our system for party voting? E.g. ranked party vote, and if party doesn’t reach threshold, those party votes go to second/third/fourth party?

        • DoublePlusGood 7.2.2.1

          STV is designed for consitutencies of 3-6 members (i.e. big electorates really).

          For overall party vote, why would you do what you propose instead of just doing it proportionally without a threshold?

          • Sans Cle 7.2.2.1.1

            Well if there is always a threshold (even if its 0.8% or whatever it takes to get 1 seat), there may still be people who don’t get representation in Parliament, if their first choice does not get 1 seat. I think that’s the only reason it would be useful in a “no” threshold scenario (although there always is a threshold).

            • Matthew Whitehead 7.2.2.1.1.1

              Actually you can run MMP without a threshold too, it lowers the amount needed to get a single seat significantly, to like 0.4%. 0.8% is a nice compromise between “we should be able to have single-seat parties frem the list vote” (which is very difficult to get with a 1% threshold) and “but there should be some sort of hurdle to getting that first presence in Parliament.” In reality it actually takes a lot of campaigning and co-ordination to earn even 0.8% of the vote- both ACT and United Future have been solidly under that threshold in polling recently, for instance.

              And no, having no threshold is fundamentally different from having a low one. It actually makes the amount you need to qualify for parliament vary based on how much of the Party Vote is wasted.

              I think having some barrier to entry, and some consequence to voting for a party that genuinely is too small to get a list seat, are actually healthy things that encourage parties to make a serious stand or not register at all.

              • lurgee

                The 5% threshold is completely bonkers in a 120 seat parliament. It could be scraped altogether, and the limited number of seats available would do the rest.

                If you got rid of an official barrier but put a firm cap on the number of seats, that would effectively stop nonsense parties getting into parliament.

                Working it what that means for the parties is just a spreadsheet.

                • MMP can’t put a cap on the number of seats while still guaranteeing that every electorate candidate who wins gets a seat in Parliament. Removing the overhang option without putting some similar rule (and the only alternative I’ve heard, removing the last list seat(s) instead, is even worse because it’s completely unpredictable who wins and loses from doing so) fundamentally undermines the electorate contests, even more than the threshold undermines the party votes. It’s better to remove electorates altogether than to keep them but selectively de-seat winners without a fair criteria.

                  This is the fundamental contradiction of MMP: those who want proportionality dislike overhangs. Those who want local candidates dislike indirectly elected list MPs. It is a hybrid compromise, and nobody is perfectly happy with it.

                  It may be that over time list voting wins out in popular opinion, and we switch to an Open List system. But it would take a big opinion shift to get there.

              • mikes

                I don’t get why it has been made so difficult. There should be 100 list seats and a 1 percent threshold. So whatever percentage of the party vote a party gets is directly proportional to the number of list seats it gets. That way you don’t end up with parties that have more votes than others but no representation. The electorate seats should have no affect or bearing on the list seats. Surely that’s the fairest way of doing it?

                (Obviously they would have to come up with a fair way of rounding the numbers)

                • What you’re talking about is sometimes called Additional member, where winning electorates is actually a guaranteed gain of a seat regardless of your list vote. It doesn’t even pretend to be a proportional system on a national level like at-large STV electorates do, so it’s actually very unfair to parties whose support base is spread more thinly around the nation- so basically, every party but Labour and National.

                  In MMP, every seat is a “list seat” until you get an overhang. Adding the overhang seats is done to preserve the ratio of list MPs from each party to each other while still allowing electorate winners to always take their seats. (because why have electorate contests at all if you ignore the winner, essentially?) This means that these electorate seats effectively lower the ratio of number of seats to number needed to form a government equally for every list party, rather than simply taking away a seat from whoever was allocated one last, like we will do (for some reason that seems daft in retrospect!) if we ever elect an Independent to Parliament.

                  The 0.8% threshold I talk about is the equivalent of a 1% threshold in a 100-member house. A no-threshold system with 100 members could potentially elect someone with as little as 0.5% of the vote. The reason I don’t support removing any of the extra 21 MPs we got with MMP is that our population has increased, and we actually have less MPs per person than we had when we had 99 MPs, so in per-capita terms, parliament has shrunk. I think someone did the maths, and if we had maintained the ratio of MPs from when we only had 99 on a per-capita basis, we should now have 138 MPs with our increased population. I think we should stick to 120 for now, and review things in a decade or so with a view to adding even more total default seats to Parliament.

                  The reason I talk about the numbers to get elected varying is effectively that every party that gets votes but doesn’t qualify for a seat effectively is removed from the party vote total, whether they’re actually under threshold or just too small to round up to even a single seat. So without a threshold, there’s no certainty what exact percentage you need to get elected. Basically, it’s complicated because of maths, not simply because the rules are arcane.

        • DoublePlusGood has essentially answered this the same way I would. I’ll elaborate a little, but I plan to get into Where To Next From MMP next time I blog, so I won’t reply in super detail.

          STV (whether you mean the Aussie/Irish type or the type used for Wellington Mayor) could be made into the constituency half of a hybrid list system that resembles MMP, but there is not enough to gain for it to be worth even considering it for the Party vote. If the threshold is that much of an obstacle, it should be relaxed or lowered. We inherited it from the German system, where it was deliberately set too high in order to prevent nationalist movements from resurfacing, and oh look it didn’t even work in New Zealand.

          Excluding small parties hasn’t seemed to buy us any more stable a government in New Zealand- that largely seems down to the practices of the governing parties.

    • One Anonymous Bloke 7.3

      🙄

      Temper temper.

      Tell us what you really think. No, wait, you just did.

      • Ad 7.3.1

        Hold that pen, and two ticks for Labour.
        You’ll enjoy it.
        Positively exhilerating.

        • Tamati Tautuhi 7.3.1.1

          Jacindamania will probably wear off by Election date and a number of Labour and National voters will swing over to NZF when they realise how useless both National & Labour have been over the past 30-40 years promoting the Neoliberal Dogma ?

          • NewsFlash 7.3.1.1.1

            Oh and NZ first has done really well hasn’t it over the 30 or 40 yrs, oh those with SHORT memories, or no memories at all………

            There is a strong wif of CHANGE in the air, and NZ has a long history of changing the Govt after 9 years, times up for bean counter Bill, and his non existent legacy of doing any thing of use.

  8. Firstly, here are no logical reasons to vote for Labour as they are just National in red coats. You vote for one and they stuff up the country and you vote for the other the same thing happens. How do you think we got to this point?

    From the smaller parties point of view, and at this point I should declare I am currently a member of the Internet Party, the threshold and polls mean that the smaller parties get no coverage. This reinforces the status quo.

    IP/Mana got 30,000 votes last year. The Conservatives got 100,000. Yet because they don’t have the money this year to pay the media to publicise them they don’t do well in the polls (Zero coverage = zero votes gained). Because they don’t get in the polls they aren’t listed in the policy sites (such as On The Fence) so nobody sees them. They essentially disappear to the general public.

    Look at the projected seats in the graph. Where are the Conservatives? Where are IP?

    What happens is the same set of options are given to the public plus one newcomer with money, and all the other decent policy is lost. It is farcical. Policy should stand against policy, not against money.

  9. These facts bear obligatory mention because we shouldn’t even need to have this discussion, as the Greens have enough support that they shouldn’t risk going under the threshold.

    Yes, they do bear mention, and let’s keep in mind why: National, and to a lesser extent Labour. Both of them hate the idea of competitors turning up, and they reap additional, unwarranted vote share from the unfortunate voters who vote for the parties that don’t make the threshold. They shafted us royally with that 5% threshold.

    • BM 9.1

      LIke I said up thread Labour wants to do to the Greens what National did it ACT.

      Two party monopoly is here to stay.

      • weka 9.1.1

        If that were true and Labour became the single left party, that would last about as long as Labour stayed centre left. There are enough people in NZ that want more action on just about everything than Labour are probably willing to do to warrant an actual left party.

      • WILD KATIPO 9.1.2

        I had baked beans for dinner last night.

    • I agree Labour are not entirely fans of MMP despite being careful not to directly oppose it too rigorously, and to paint themselves as better coalition leaders. I doubt Labour will ever actively support measures like lowering thresholds or reforming/removing electorate voting, but if there’s public demand for it Labour are far more likely to fold on the issue than National are.

      • WILD KATIPO 9.2.1

        Remember back in the bad old days when National used to change the electorate boundary’s just to favor them ?

        Somehow I don’t think the NZ public would ever vote for that unfair system again…

        Also it’d take the demise of all the smaller party’s , as both Lab / Nats don’t even take enough votes these days to have a complete voting majority.

        So nah. Aint gonna happen.

        • I don’t actually remember gerrymandering in New Zealand, as I have only ever voted under MMP, and well, there’s very little point to gerrymandering for National and Labour in MMP. 🙂

          You’re confusing what I was talking about, btw. I was talking about making MMP fairer to the small parties/more fit for purpose as a democratic system, not doing away with it or “reforming” to something that’s actually worse even though it sounds okay in theory to non-experts. Labour would like to make MMP less fair, so long as it benefits them. (Mallard once proposed increasing the number of electorates so much that Labour would likely always win overhang seats) National would like to do away with it altogether, because they know it hurts them even having MMP, but know they don’t have the numbers even in a referendum. Neither of them will easily get what they want, but what they can do is also prevent things from getting any “worse” for them by ganging up on the small parties to scuttle any efforts at making MMP better.

  10. Tamati Tautuhi 10

    NZF always get 5% additional votes at the Election cf to the polls so they are probably tracking at 16-17% which would appear to be about right at this stage ?

  11. Philj 11

    If, if and if again. There is one poll that really counts IF you are really, really, really serious. If Germany had invaded England in WW2. If the AB’S had taken their own chef and food to the World Cup in South Africa in two thousand and whatever. If Barbie was an All Black! This is what I call Poll Porn. Other countries don’t permit this poll porn, for obvious reasons. Tea leaf reading anyone?

    • dukeofurl 11.1

      What other countries prohibit polls completely ? Some might restrict publication of results within days before an election, but 5 weeks ?

      Australia used to have rule prohibiting broadcast media running any election related stories at all for the 3 days before polling day. used to !!

      Election day in NZ is of course of limits for any party campaigning at all.

  12. 1. I fully agree that we each should vote as we believe is best for NZ. For Matthew that’s the Greens, for some in here that’s NZF. For me, and for others it’s Labour. I wonder if we can lay off telling each other how ‘stupid’ the other is 😊 We seem to troll our ‘friends’ way too much.
    2. Minor correction Matthew. Much as I’d like Raf to be running against Brownlee in Epsom, they are in fact both running against me (and David Lee from the Greens) in Ilam. 😉

    • JanM 12.1

      I have to agree. It upsets me to see this arguing from people who need to be working together for the common good. There are some excellent candidates in both Labour and the Greens who I’m sure will have the professionalism and integrity to work together without unnecessary displays of ego.
      By the way, I just watched Marama Davidson’s speech on the third reading of the Ngatikahu settlement. Gosh, she’s impressive – it’s a great pity the Greens can’t use her more in this election – I hope she’s the new co-leader when the time is right.

  13. Tracey 13

    What if we had no polls and we starting thinking for ourselves?

    • Incognito 13.1

      I like your thinking but we’re social animals and we want know what others are thinking too and we prefer to have our thoughts confirmed and reiterated, which is why we tend to look for places with like-minded people, etc. I think polls are a double-edged sword; it depends on how you use it.

      I try to (largely) ignore polls and the associated ‘reporting’ but if I am 100% honest I do have to admit that they do influence my thinking. This by itself is neither good nor bad as long as I am aware of and honest (to myself) about it.

      • weka 13.1.1

        I have less of problem with the polls than what the MSM are doing. If we took the polls away (I’m not averse to the idea of a ban pre-election) I think the MSM are so out of control now they would find other ways to have power.

        • Incognito 13.1.1.1

          The problem with polls and stats in general is that without an authoritative (!) commentary they are left open to interpretation and thus manipulation. (NB authoritative means trustworthy in this context) To most people these numbers mean something but they don’t exactly know what, they don’t know the boundaries of certainty (AKA confidence limits or intervals). As they say, in the land of the blind the one-eyed man is king.

          I believe people have an insatiable appetite for information (better: input stimuli) and the MSM is more than willing to fill this desire/need, especially when nobody else fills the void. The more cynical view is that the MSM is owned/controlled by ‘dark forces’ to manipulate us – I think that better belongs in a Hollywood script.

          • weka 13.1.1.1.1

            I don’t think the MSM are controlled by dark forces, I just think the culture has been co-opted by neoliberal values, and increasingly, proto-fascist. So in this case, them providing information would be good if they did it ethically and with the purpose of supporting democracy. Instead we have the cheerleaders of Dirty Politics and even some of the good journos are playing gotcha politics.

            It’s boring too.

            • Incognito 13.1.1.1.1.1

              Yup. For the record, I was not for a moment suggesting that you subscribe to the ‘dark forces’!

              Interesting point you make: supporting democracy is the end that justifies the means. We live in a democracy now, don’t we? If yes, is support sufficient? I think we’re missing something here and I believe Sue Bradford (and others as well) is zooming in on it …

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    Today is a Member's Day, and probably the last one of the year. After the marathon of the End of Life Choice Act, most of the bills up for debate today are uncontentious. First up is the second reading of Chlöe Swarbrick's Election Access Fund Bill. This will be followed ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Worse than I thought
    The Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade Committee has reported back on the government's odious and tyrannical control orders bill. As expected, the fraudulent select committee process has made no significant changes (partly because they couldn't agree, but mostly because it was a stitch-up from the start, with no intention of ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • The cannabis bill and the referendum
    Yesterday, the government released its draft Cannabis Legalisation and Control Bill, which will be put to a non-binding referendum at the next election. I'm not a drug policy expert, but Russell Brown is, and he thinks its pretty good. And pretty obviously, it will be a massive improvement on the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Hard News: The Cannabis Legalisation and Control Bill: pretty good so far
    As you're probably aware, the draft bill outlining the proposed legal cannabis regime to be put to a referendum late next year was published yesterday, and has already attracted a flurry of comment. It's notable that a good deal of the comment is about proposals that aren't actually new.A minimum ...
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: Alignment
    One of the big problems in New Zealand climate change policy is the government working at cross-purposes with itself. It wants to reduce fossil fuel use, but encourages oil and gas exploration. It wants to reduce transport emissions, but then builds enormous new roads. The problem could be avoided if ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • How climate change will affect food production and security
    Climate Explained is a collaboration between The Conversation, Stuff and the New Zealand Science Media Centre to answer your questions about climate change. If you have a question you’d like an expert to answer, please send it to climate.change@stuff.co.nz According to the United Nations, food shortages are a threat ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • More bad faith
    Last year, the government announced it was ending offshore oil exploration by no longer issuing new permits. The idea was that the industry would then die off as permits expired. Except almost immediately the government revealed its bad faith, by saying they would extend permits and alter conditions to keep ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Banning foreign money from our elections
    The government has said it will ban foreign donations to political parties and candidates, and will be introducing legislation to be passed under all-stages urgency this afternoon. While I agree with the goal, I don't see a particular case for urgency, unless the government is concerned about a flood of ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Reforming the Education Acts
    The government introduced the Education and Training Bill to Parliament yesterday. Its a massive bill, which replaces both existing Education Acts, as well as various other bits of legislation (including some which are still proceeding through the House). I'll leave the serious analysis to teachers and people who actually know ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Bite-sized learning
    Amelia SharmanThere’s no one-size-fits-all when it comes to micro-credentials, those bits of bite-sized learning that can help workers stay on top of technological change.  What’s a micro-credential? While definitions vary, micro-credentials can be understood as short courses that allow people to learn new skills or have an existing competency recognised. ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks ago
  • “Not The Labour Party We Once Knew.”
    All Smiles Now: Claire Szabo is taking up her presidential role after serving as the CEO of Habitat For Humanity. Which is absolutely perfect! After KiwiBuild was so comprehensively mismanaged by Phil Twyford, the party has not only elected a new president from a thoroughly respectable not-for-profit, but one who ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Marxist versus liberal methodology on transgender ideology/identity politics
    While much of the NZ left has transitioned to postmodern and identity politics in relation to transgender ideology, there are some very good articles about that deploy Marxist methodology in relation to this subject.  The one below is from the British marxist group Counterfire and appeared on their site here ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Book review: The Farm by Joanne Ramos
    by Daphna Whitmore At Golden Oaks, a luxurious country retreat in the Hudson Valley, pregnant women have the best care money can buy. From the organic food, personalised exercise programmes, private yoga instruction and daily massages Golden Oaks looks like a country lodge for the upper class. Set some time ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    2 weeks ago
  • Loosening the purse strings
    When Labour was running for election in 2017, it felt it needed to demonstrate "fiscal responsibility" and signed itself up to masochistic "budget responsibility rules". It was a fool's errand: the sorts of voters who demand fiscal responsibility are also the sorts of voters who believe that labour can never ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Climate Change: How to get there
    Writing in Stuff, Joel MacManus looks at what we need to do to meet the Zero Carbon Act's targets. The core of it:1. Convert 85 per cent of vehicles on the road to electric. 2. Eliminate fossil fuels from all industrial heating up to 300 degrees Celsius. 3. Double our ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • anti-vaxxers in a measles epidemic: so many ways to be untruthful
    “Anti-vaxers are a pro-death movement,” those comments from Dr Helen Petousis-Harris speaking about six more Measles related deaths in Samoa over the past twenty-four hours. “Anti-vaxers are a pro-death movement,” those comments from Dr Helen Petousis-Harris speaking about six more Measles related deaths in Samoa ...
    SciBlogsBy Alison Campbell
    2 weeks ago
  • Is Youth Vaping a Problem in New Zealand?
    Professors Janet Hoek and Richard Edwards, Emeritus Professor Phil Gendall, Jude Ball, Dr Judith McCool, Anaru Waa, Dr Becky Freeman Recent media reports have presented conflicting evidence on youth vaping in NZ. While some NZ school principals report concerns about increasing vaping on school grounds and confiscating vapes, ASH Year ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    2 weeks ago
  • In pursuit of “Freedom and Democracy”: Forever Wars in “America’s backyard”.
    “America the Beautiful!”, staunch defender of democracy, freedom and… a whole lot of despotic tyrants that play nice with what is called “the Washington Consensus.” America is indeed capable of immense good, but like any Nation, and most assuredly any aspirant to the mantle of Empire, great, immense evil. All ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    2 weeks ago
  • November ’19 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
    Image credit: The beginner’s guide to blogging I notice a few regulars no longer allow public access to the site counters. This may happen accidentally when the blog format is altered. If your blog is ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Whodunnit? Finding the mystery 1080 testing lab
    1080 is used to control pests in NZ. Its use is contested by a noisy few. A new report claims high levels of 1080 in rats washed up on a beach. Flora and Fauna of Aotearoa (F&F) won’t name the laboratory that did their testing. It has sparked a hunt ...
    SciBlogsBy Grant Jacobs
    2 weeks ago
  • Authoritarian Friends, Democratic Enemies.
    What Kind Of Empire? The thing for Kiwis to decide is what kind of empire they want to belong to. The kind that, while offering its own citizens democratic rights, demands absolute obedience from its “friends”? Or, the kind that, while authoritarian at home, takes a relaxed attitude to the ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Boris Johnson Goes Down
    It hasn't been a good week for the Conservatives, pollwise.  All major recent polls are showing their lead shrinking.Comparing each pollster's current (between 29/11 and 22/11) and previous most recent poll.Com Res - Conservative lead down 3 points.You Gov - Conservative lead down 1 point.Kantar - Conservative lead down 4 ...
    2 weeks ago

  • PM congratulates Boris Johnson on election victory
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has congratulated United Kingdom Prime Minister Boris Johnson on his election victory.  “New Zealand and the United Kingdom are close friends and despite our distance we are strongly connected by our history and people,” Jacinda Ardern said.  “I look forward to continuing to work with Prime ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    8 hours ago
  • Building a platform for the future of rail
    The Government has released its long term vision for a sustainable 21st Century rail network that gets our cities moving, connects our regions and gets more freight off the roads.   Deputy Prime Minister and State Owned Enterprises Minister Winston Peters said the Government is committed to rebuilding New Zealand’s ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    8 hours ago
  • Prime Minister statement Whakaari White Island recovery operation
    I want to start by acknowledging the families who have experienced such grief and such loss since the extraordinary tragedy on Monday. Today was all about reuniting them with their loved ones. We've just come from the airport where many of them were gathered and in amongst what you can ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    9 hours ago
  • New Zealand medical specialists to provide further support to Samoa
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters today announced further support for Samoa’s longer term needs as it continues to respond to a devastating measles epidemic. “Samoa’s health system has experienced massive strain in the wake of the measles epidemic. The volume of patients needing care during this outbreak, and the number of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    11 hours ago
  • Discounted electric-bikes offered to public sector workers
    Discounted electric bikes will be offered up to public sector staff across the country as part of the Government’s work to reduce transport emissions and support healthier transport options.  Associate Minister of Transport Julie Anne Genter officially launched the new initiative at Wellington Hospital today.  “The Government has negotiated bulk-purchase ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    12 hours ago
  • Australia and New Zealand confirm joint bid for FIFA Women’s World Cup
    The Australian and New Zealand Governments today launch an historic joint bid to bring the FIFA Women’s World Cup to the Southern Hemisphere for the first time. Australian Minister for Youth and Sport, Richard Colbeck and New Zealand Minister for Sport and Recreation Grant Robertson will announce the bold campaign, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    13 hours ago
  • Blackwater gold mine gets PGF boost
    The Provincial Growth Fund (PGF) has approved a $15 million loan to help re-establish a gold mining operation at Blackwater Gold Mine, near Reefton, Rural Communities Minister and local MP Damien O’Connor announced at an event on the West Coast today. “This is great news for the Coast that could ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    14 hours ago
  • Papakāinga model inspires whānau well-being
    Papakāinga model inspires whānau well-being A housing project by Kohupātiki whānau in Hastings is an outstanding example of a Māori-led housing initiative that can reduce financial pressure and reconnect whānau to their whakapapa says the Minister for Māori Development Hon Nanaia Mahuta.  Minister Mahuta officially opened the Aroha Te Rangi ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    14 hours ago
  • Government provides more funding for major community wetland restoration project
    Restoration efforts for a significant wetland in the Hawke’s Bay are getting more support announced Associate Minister for the Environment Eugenie Sage. “Wetlands are vital to healthy landscapes and ecosystems. They function as nature’s ‘kidneys’, filtering and protecting water quality, acting as nature’s sponges after rain and are home to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    14 hours ago
  • Housing First to help Nelson Tasman homeless
    Nelson has today seen the launch of Housing First Nelson Tasman. Today’s launch marks the expansion of the Government’s homelessness programme, Housing First, to the top of the South Island. “Housing First is a proven programme that puts people who are experiencing homelessness and multiple, high and complex needs into ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    16 hours ago
  • New funding to support Environment Centres working for sustainable local solutions
    New Government funding announced today will help communities make a difference in tackling environmental issues Associate Minister for the Environment Eugenie Sage announced in Hawkes Bay today. The Ministry for the Environment’s Community Environment Fund is dedicating $243,101 to growing the capacity and capability of the Environment Hubs Aotearoa’s (EHA) ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    16 hours ago
  • Government takes bite out of loan sharks
    The days of vulnerable consumers falling victim to loan sharks, truck shops and other predatory lenders are numbered, following the Credit Contracts Legislation Amendment Bill passing its third reading tonight. “Too many Kiwis are being given loans that are unaffordable and unsuitable, trapping them in debt and leaving their families ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • New Zealand safer as Terrorism Suppression (Control Orders Bill) becomes law
    A Bill that prevents terrorism and supports the de-radicalisation of New Zealanders returning from overseas has passed its third reading, Justice Minister Andrew Little says. The Terrorism Suppression (Control Orders) Bill is a carefully targeted response to manage the risk posed by a small number of New Zealanders who have ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Foreign Minister and Pacific Peoples Minister to visit Samoa
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters and Minister for Pacific Peoples Aupito William Sio will travel to Samoa on Friday, where New Zealand medical teams are helping Samoa respond to an outbreak of measles. “New Zealand has been working closely with the Government of Samoa and offering our assistance from the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • New Pastoral Care Code will support tertiary students in 2020
    The Government has changed the law to improve student safety and welfare in university halls of residence and other student accommodation. The Education (Pastoral Care) Amendment Bill passed its third reading this afternoon and details of an interim Code of Practice setting out the Government’s expectations of tertiary providers have also been released. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • New infrastructure funding tool to build housing developments faster
    A new tool to help councils fund and finance infrastructure could mean some housing developments happen a decade earlier than currently planned, Urban Development Minister Phil Twyford said today. “This new tool, developed by the Government in partnership with industry and high-growth councils, will allow councils to access private debt ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Vision to unite the primary sector launched today
    Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor has welcomed the release of a bold new vision for the country’s vital food and fibre sector. “I’m delighted that New Zealand’s major farmer and grower organisations are today supporting the Primary Sector Council’s vision – Fit for a Better World,” he said. “The international consumers ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • NZ congratulates PNG and Autonomous Bougainville Government on referendum
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters has congratulated the Government of Papua New Guinea and the Autonomous Bougainville Government for completing a well-conducted referendum on the future political status of Bougainville. “New Zealand supported the referendum process by providing technical advice through the New Zealand Electoral Commission and leading a Regional Police ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Next steps for Upper North Island logistics
    In light of Cabinet’s position that freight operations on prime land in downtown Auckland are no longer viable, the Government will now embark on a short work programme to enable decision-making in the first half of next year, Associate Transport Minister Shane Jones says. Minister Jones is today releasing the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Surgical mesh restorative justice report received
    Associate Health Minister Julie Anne Genter has received the report back from a surgical mesh restorative justice process undertaken by Victoria University. The process heard stories, either in person or online submission, from more than 600 people affected by surgical mesh. “The report made for heart-breaking and confronting reading,” says ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • The Water Services Regulator Bill – Taumata Arowai a milestone for drinking water safety
    The Water Services Regulator Bill – Taumata Arowai , introduced to Parliament today, is a milestone for drinking water safety in New Zealand and will help improve environmental outcomes for urban waterways, rivers and lakes.  “This is a breakthrough for New Zealanders in terms of providing safe drinking water throughout ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Speech to new direction for criminal justice reform announcement
    Kia ora koutouE ngā mana, e ngā reo, e ngā matā wakaTēnā koutou katoaHaere ngā, moe maiKoutou ma ngā Rangatira Ko Anaru ahauKo au te Minita mo ngā TureHe Honore tino nui kei roto I ahau No reira tena koutou katoa Today, we are releasing two reports that are the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • New direction for criminal justice reform
    The Government is looking to turn around the long-term challenges of criminal justice by taking a new approach to break the cycle of offending to ensure there are fewer victims of crime. Justice Minister Andrew Little released two reports today, Turuki! Turuki! from Te Uepū Hāpai I te Ora, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • New law sets up $300m Venture Capital Fund
    New Zealand firms expanding beyond the start-up phase are set for more support after today’s passage of the Venture Capital Fund Bill, Associate Finance Minister David Parker said. The Bill, which establishes a $300 million Venture Capital Fund, puts in place a key initiative of the Wellbeing Budget’s economic package. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • New Zealand’s National Statement to COP25
    E ngā mana, e ngā reo, e ngā iwi, e ngā rau rangatira mā. Tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou katoa. Señora Presidenta, Excellencies, Delegates. International action A common thread that runs through the Paris Agreement is the commitment we have made to each other to do what we can to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • $12 billion in extra infrastructure investment
    The Government is lifting capital investment to the highest level in more than 20 years as it takes the next step to future-proof New Zealand. Finance Minister Grant Robertson has announced $12 billion of new investment, with $8 billion for specific capital projects and $4 billion to be added to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Strong economy, careful spending gives $12bn of surpluses
    The Government is forecast to run $12 billion worth of surpluses across the four years to 2023/24 as the economy continues to grow. The surpluses will help fund day-to-day capital requirements each year. These include fixing leaky hospitals, building new classrooms to cover population growth and take pressure off class ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Priorities for 2020 Wellbeing Budget outlined
    Budget 2020 will continue the Coalition Government’s focus on tackling the long-term challenges facing New Zealand while also investing to future-proof the economy. When the Government took office in 2017 it was left with crumbling infrastructure, severe underinvestment in public services, degraded rivers and lakes, a housing crisis and rising ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Minister welcomes data-rich coastline mapping tool
    The Minister responsible for the Marine and Coastal Area (Takutai Moana) Act 2011 (te Takutai Moana Act 2011), Andrew Little has welcomed the launch of an online geospatial tool that provides data-rich, dynamic coastline maps that will significantly boost research and evidence-gathering under the Act. Te Kete Kōrero a Te ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Chief Victims Advisor reappointed for a further two years
    The Chief Victims Advisor to Government Dr Kim McGregor, QSO, has been reappointed in her role for a further two years. Dr McGregor has held the role since it was established in November 2015. She provides independent advice to government on how to improve the criminal justice system for victims. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • New Zealand tsunami monitoring and detection system to be established
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters and Civil Defence Minister Peeni Henare have today announced the deployment of a network of DART (Deep-ocean Assessment and Reporting of Tsunami) buoys. “New Zealand and the Pacific region are particularly vulnerable to natural disasters. It is vital we have adequate warning systems in place,” ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • DART Buoys Announcement
    DART Buoys Announcement Aotea Wharf, 9.30am 11 December 2019   Acknowledgements Acknowledgements to Minister for Civil Defence Hon Peeni Henare also here today. White Island It is with regret that this event shadows the tragic natural disaster two days ago. The volcanic eruptions on White Island have claimed 5 lives, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Final steps for racing industry reform
    Racing Minister Winston Peters has welcomed the first reading of the Racing Industry Bill in parliament today. This is the second of two Bills that have been introduced this year to revitalise New Zealand’s racing industry. “Our domestic racing industry has been in serious decline.  The Government is committed to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Funding to promote New Zealand Sign Language initiatives
    Minister for Disability Issues, Carmel Sepuloni, is pleased to announce that $291,321 is to be awarded to national and local community initiatives to maintain and promote the use of New Zealand Sign Language (NZSL). “New Zealand is one of the few countries  in the world where Sign Language is an ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • How New Zealand defines and recognises veterans
    Minister for Veterans Ron Mark has announced today the Coalition Government’s initial response to work completed by the independent statutory body, the Veterans’ Advisory Board. “When Professor Ron Paterson completed his review of the Veterans’ Support Act in 2018, he made a number of recommendations, including one which I referred ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Government to fund lion’s share of Ohakea water scheme
    The Government will fund the bulk of the cost of a rural water supply for the Ohakea community affected by PFAS contamination, Environment Minister David Parker announced today at a meeting of local residents. This new water scheme will provide a reliable and clean source of drinking water to the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Prime Minister statement on White Island eruption
    I have had the opportunity to be briefed on the details of the volcanic eruption of Whakaari/White Island, off the coast of Whakatane in the Bay of Plenty.  The eruption happened at 2.11pm today.  It continues to be an evolving situation.  We know that there were a number of tourists ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Govt funds $100k for weather-hit communities
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Minister of Civil Defence Peeni Henare have today confirmed initial Government support of $100,000 for communities affected by the severe weather that swept across the South Island and lower North Island over the weekend. The contribution will be made to Mayoral relief funds across the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Death of NZ High Commissioner to Cook Islands
    New Zealand's High Commissioner to the Cook Islands, Tessa Temata, died in Palmerston North over the weekend, Foreign Minister Winston Peters said today. Ms Temata, 52, had recently returned to New Zealand for medical treatment. "On behalf of the Government and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade, we extend ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Wellington rail upgrade full steam ahead
    Transport Minister Phil Twyford today announced construction is underway on Wellington commuter rail upgrades which will mean more frequent services and fewer breakdowns. The upgrades include converting the Trentham to Upper Hutt single track section to a double track, with a new signalling system, upgraded stations and level crossings, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago