Twyford on solutions to the housing crisis in Auckland

Written By: - Date published: 7:11 am, April 15th, 2016 - 41 comments
Categories: housing, labour, phil twyford - Tags: , , , , ,

As Nick Smith flounders about uselessly, here are extracts from Phil Twyford’s speech to the NZ Planning Institute on the housing crisis in Auckland [emphasis added at some points].


Speech to NZ Planning Institute conference

Fuelled by concern about unaffordable housing and falling home ownership, we’ve seen a vigorous public debate that has drawn in all the political parties, and a myriad of other voices from the property industry to ratepayers to Generation Zero, and planners of course are smack bang in the middle of this debate.

Two things are increasingly clear. First, pretending Auckland’s woes are inevitable or that the city is a victim of its own success, won’t wash. When our housing is less affordable than Tokyo, New York and London, and it takes 50 years to pay off the average home, something is seriously wrong.

There is no silver bullet. The mess housing is in is a result of multi-layered policy failure. Fixing the crisis is going to take bold and sustained reform on several fronts.

We need to crack down on speculators, starting off by banning non-resident foreigners from buying existing homes. Government needs to be willing to intervene in the market on an ongoing basis to deliver the volume and quality of affordable housing needed. Currently an accumulated shortfall of 30-40,000 in Auckland. Labour believes a big bold policy like Kiwibuild is needed to flood the market with high quality affordable homes.

But this morning I want to share with you Labour’s ideas on reforming the planning rules, and the way infrastructure is financed, to add to our comprehensive set of policies designed to fix the housing crisis.

Our commitment is to free up the restrictions on density, reform the use of urban growth boundaries to stop them driving up section costs, and modernise the way infrastructure for development is financed.

We believe these three changes will allow the property industry to build more and build better. It will allow the market to be more responsive to demand. Crucially it will allow more affordable housing to be built in places where people want to live.

First, we will publish a National Policy Statement under the Resource Management Act that will for example, direct Auckland Council to free up the rules on intensification in its Unitary Plan, because it is a matter of national importance.

The detail of land use rules is rightly a matter for local communities and their elected representatives in local government, but overly restrictive rules on height and density shut down housing affordability and choke off supply.

Being smart about urban growth boundaries is the next big challenge. Over the last 25 years the urban boundary, along with the density restrictions, have stopped Auckland building up and out during a time of rapid population increase. It created a pressure cooker which found its only release in skyrocketing section prices.

The big problem with the urban growth boundary is that it creates an artificial scarcity of land that drives up section prices, creating wonderful business opportunities for land bankers. We believe there are better ways to manage growth on the city fringes, particularly more intensive use of spatial planning in growth corridors.

The key to making both these measures work is reforming the inefficient and expensive way infrastructure is financed.

Currently all of the infrastructure costs within a new development, and a share of the connecting infrastructure through development contributions, are financed by the developer and directly passed on to the home buyer, and paid off through their mortgage. This adds tens of thousands to the price tag of the new home, making it even more unaffordable. Worse, the higher price of land is substantially capitalised into the value of all homes in the market.

Our policy is to finance infrastructure using local government bonds paid off through a targeted rate on the properties in the new development. Bonds are a much cheaper option than funding it through your mortgage. They allow you to spread the cost over the lifetime of the asset. It is fairer and more efficient.

Bill English and Nick Smith have been blaming the RMA for expensive housing for ten years now. After seven years in government they have not yet done anything to tackle the substantive ways that Council planning rules block development: density restrictions, urban growth boundaries and infrastructure financing.

In fact for the last several years the National Government has been on a fruitless quest to weaken the core environmental principles of the RMA. They have not yet been able to get support from the country or the Parliament for these changes, and have wasted years in the process.

Labour’s policy of a National Policy Statement could have addressed the critical issues years ago.

So, there are three practical proposals that under an Andrew Little-led government will clear away the road blocks to building more and building better. … There is nothing inevitable about the housing crisis. The solutions are all there. We just need a Government with the political will to embrace reform.

41 comments on “Twyford on solutions to the housing crisis in Auckland”

  1. tinfoilhat 1

    Good on Phil for continuing to plug away at this problem.

    The Nats have done nothing to alleviate the housing issues in Auckland apart from telling half truths, obfuscation and blaming everyone else apart from themselves.

  2. saveNZ 2

    Personally don’t think this approach is a winner for Labour.

    Homeowners are being sickened by the assault on their properties and communities. When you see how currently Auckland planners are just approving everything willy nilly so much so that a guy found out that 1/4 of his house was being demolished as it was a duplex but the council thought that the effect on his property was only minor. In Wellington the neighbours who put up a massive fence to block their neighbours views pretending it was part of a playground or the ancient Kauri tree destroyed in Titirangi and the 1 km of harbour that was stolen for ports of Auckland – you realise that actually what is wrong is the planners themselves.

    Banning foreign investors by buying existing homes is too late, how about zero homes for foreign investors, maybe they should invest in something else business related in this country? The level of community and council land being developed into retirement homes, shoddy apartments and corporate welfare shopping malls turning our cities into some sort of Thai style glitz with slum developments often with foreign money.

    The housing crisis is directly caused by government immigration policy. Increasing the population 1 – 1.5% per YEAR, but all the so called commentators just don’t want to talk about it. That is not migrants fault it is the governments fault.

    Developers develop for rich people. The new houses and apartments going up in Auckland are one of the bigger drivers of the speculation with million dollar houses being built on the SHA in some cases. It is a joke!

    As is selling off state houses. And having the cost of 1 hour of parking in Auckland the same price as minimum wage.

    And as for the underinvestment in public transport. It is deplorable. You can spread the city out as far and wide as LA but we will be condemned to smog and commuter times of hours.

    Would love the left to get real on the concerns of existing property owners and actually not go Nat Lite on the issue by thinking property developers and less regulation and foreign money will solve the problem.

    • Sabine 2.1

      it would be nice if someone would get real on the concerns of the existing homeless, four to a room flatters, precariously living in a shed/garage/car/ditch, hoping not to loose their rental to a sale etc etc etc. Cause we don’t.

      The homeowners in many cases are relatively safe, they own their properties and while they may not have a big say on what happens when their neighbor sells up they still have a safe place to stay until they decide to cash into the market in AKL. But neither dot he tenants of these buildings. And we need to start looking at communities in terms of home owners and tenants, unless we are happy to be the last homeowner in a community of ever selling houses and transient tenants.

      And again, are we talking about homeowners that own the one property they live in, or homeowners that hold three to four mortgages and hope to god and goddess that nothing happens to them and their incomes.

      So i don’t disagree with you on Council Planners doing very little to help the problem, but frankly after 8 years of National Party led Goverments Do Nothing approach to the housing crisis, the last worries that I have for my community are home owners.

      Our worries are such that the houses that have been initially sold three years ago by are still going up like clock work every 6 month for sale, that a rotting pile of wood was sold to a TV Show contestant and needs to be sold now after having been empty for 5 month with a profit. Which will lead to a very small, no section, only one car park, very little on street parking 3 bedder and an under the staircase closet being sold for something like a million – cause the tv show contestant bought and renovated a crap little starter house for 750.000$ !!!!. I am sure the homeowner will not find anything to complain about.

      What Mr. Twyford said and has been saying now for a while should be a winner, unless we are happy to throw 50+% of the population under the bus when it comes to housing.
      Consider also that it is not just young ones that are priced out, it is also a few of the 40+ age group that have lost mortgages at the beginning of 2008 – 9 during re-structuring, loss of job, illness, divorce etc etc etc that now will never be able to buy a house again in what is their home town. But then maybe home town only means something if it concerns home owners.
      All others can get ‘fudged’.

    • Draco T Bastard 2.2

      Banning foreign investors by buying existing homes is too late, how about zero homes for foreign investors, maybe they should invest in something else business related in this country?

      Nope. People offshore simply shouldn’t own anything in NZ.

      corporate welfare shopping malls

      Why are people still building shopping malls? They belong to last century.

      Would love the left to get real on the concerns of existing property owners and actually not go Nat Lite on the issue by thinking property developers and less regulation and foreign money will solve the problem.

      QFT

      • I’d say it’s going too far to say people offshore shouldn’t own ANYTHING in New Zealand, but we have a legitimate interest in preserving New Zealand ownership of at least a majority of assets in New Zealand, so that we don’t become, essentially, a dormitory country, renting our accomodation from foreign interests to work for multinationals to buy food from multinationals in order to go back to work for multinationals, with every transaction sending the majority of money involved overseas.

        Those who do want to own property here should be interested in either living in it themselves or providing for affordable rental or lease. (subject to enforced minimum standards)

        edit: I guess I just feel like forcing foreign owners to occupy the property a significant time themselves, or making them provide affordable rentals with reasonable conditions will remove a lot of the incentive to own ALL the rental property. Perhaps I’m wrong though. 🙂

        • Draco T Bastard 2.2.1.1

          I’d say it’s going too far to say people offshore shouldn’t own ANYTHING in New Zealand

          Nope. It’s about equality under the law. If we allow some offshore people to own part of NZ then we have to allow all offshore people to own part of NZ. This will, over time, remove NZers ability to live in their own land.

          Those who do want to own property here should be interested in either living in it themselves or providing for affordable rental or lease.

          Nope as it simply doesn’t do anything for us while allowing offshore parasites to live off of the work of NZers.

          • AmaKiwi 2.2.1.1.1

            + 1

            “affordable rental or lease” means we pay foreigners rent/profits which go overseas, worsening our balance of trade. We do this so we can”enjoy the “privilege” of living in our own country!

            If we want foreigners to sell off the properties they presently own, we simply change the tax code to make it prohibitively expensive for them to retain properties here. Quadrupling the rates on foreign owned properties would do wonders for my ever escalating rates.

            It is common for countries prohibit foreigners owning property.

          • Matthew Whitehead 2.2.1.1.2

            Well, I’d disagree a little that it does NOTHING for us, having affordable and up-to-code rentals is something we do need, it’s just a question of whether the correct amount can be either owned by New Zealand capital, or are an investment the government can afford to make if we have a chance to implement your buyback of property from offshore interests. (by which I assume you mean non-resident foreigners and multinationals not doing business in NZ?) We currently have too much property, with not enough being lived in, and the property that is lived in not being up to an acceptable standard. I imagine requiring offshore speculators to rent it out or reside in it themselves (in addition to a tax on capital in NZ) would probably cool down the market a lot, but YMMV.

            I totally agree with the reasons you want to do this but I think allowing SOME amount of openness in property investment isn’t unreasonable, but possibly with practical limits on how much profit can be offshored, either by setting the standards for rentals and leases very high, or by implementing an actual cap to offshoring rental profits. Of course if that didn’t fix things sufficiently I’d agree that your proposal is the logical next step.

            • Draco T Bastard 2.2.1.1.2.1

              having affordable and up-to-code rentals is something we do need, it’s just a question of whether the correct amount can be either owned by New Zealand capital

              All money in NZ can easily be NZ money. Having foreign money in NZ doesn’t actually make any more resources available.

              (by which I assume you mean non-resident foreigners and multinationals not doing business in NZ?)

              By which I mean anybody not living in NZ and multi-nationals also wouldn’t be able to operate in NZ (they can sell their goods here but it’d have to be through a local distributor).

              • Right. It’s just a question of when you do the buyback whether the government feels it’s acceptable to hold onto whatever proportion of property can’t be on-sold to local investors, as that might end up being a large liability if it expands the housing/rental market by a large degree. I don’t expect that any government willing to do such a buy-back would be terribly keen on hanging onto ALL the properties it bought, although it would probably hold onto some as social housing. Some properties might be elaborate mansions for non-resident celebrities, for instance, which would possibly be impractical for the government to rent or lease.

                Interesting point on multinationals btw, I like it.

      • dave 2.2.2

        if you haven’t noticed Westfield are bailing out of the shopping mails if you look at a shopping mail they don’t make sense any longer there is nothing in them that isnt being sold on line and as the years pass they will become more and more irrelevant the only retail shop that make sense is likes of bunnings building supplies anything else is just an expensive showroom there closing mails down across America or desperately trying to find some formula to make them work

  3. ianmac 3

    Does it have to be a “winner” for the Little-lead Government? Surely it would be proof of competent well thought out Government. Lots more to come.

  4. Colonial Viper 4

    First, we will publish a National Policy Statement under the Resource Management Act that will for example, direct Auckland Council to free up the rules on intensification in its Unitary Plan, because it is a matter of national importance.

    The thing to note here is that the National Government has long blamed both Auckland Council and the RMA for limitations on new house availability in Auckland.

    Now Labour has come to the same understanding as the National Party, albeit years late to the party, and officially admitted that Key and English had it right all along.

    • AmaKiwi 4.1

      And this Labour idea is another devastating blow for democracy.

      Which dictatorship should I vote for. Neither is democratic.

      • Colonial Viper 4.1.1

        Labour originally complained that National’s approach was undemocratic.

        Now its decided to do yet another National Government aping act. Just add it to the list:

        Keep National’s TPPA
        Sign up to National’s spying and anti-terror legislation
        National’s Kiwi Bank pseudo-privatisation is a good idea
        Vote for the NAT’s beneficiary and their partners blaming bill

        etc.

        • Chris 4.1.1.1

          And the worst thing is that there’s absolutely no indication that Labour’s going to change, and every indication that it’s more of the same.

          What’s important here for the “head in the sand Labour can do wrong” brigade is that it’s an extremely irresponsible position for Labour to be taking. They’re sitting on around just under 30% which means they’re going nowhere but that level of support also prevents others from taking that position. The result is that Labour props up a nasty hate-driven Key-led government. And it’s no coincidence that their policies are almost identical.

  5. AB 5

    We have to tackle domestic speculators too, not just foreign ones.
    How about a direct tax on income from rental properties – say 2.5% per bedroom cumulative across your rental portfolio so at 40 bedrooms you forgo all your income from rent?
    Doesn’t cripple the middle class mum & dad who rent out a single 3-bedder to (say) augment retirement income, but targets the bigger players.
    Would trigger an orgy of evasion I guess?

    • Rocco Siffredi 5.1

      So people just buy houses and don’t rent them out. The tax is then avoided.

    • Nessalt 5.2

      And who do you think pays this tax? i’m not really keen on paying my landlord $975 per week to share a house because he is paying tax of 50% on his 6th or 7th house. people would avoid this tax on purpose because it’s so ridiculous.

      • AB 5.2.1

        Indeed – you’d have to combine it with a rent freeze. And of course do something about houses left vacant and farmed for unearned capital gain.
        Depends how determined you are to stop wealth all heading in one direction.
        Housing is a human right – becoming a petit rentier capitalist isn’t.

        • Nessalt 5.2.1.1

          Housing or owning housing?

          there is always going to be a need for landlords, without the petty envy labels.

          • AB 5.2.1.1.1

            “there is always going to be a need for landlords, without the petty envy labels”
            Possibly – do they need to be private individuals and should they be allowed (along with the banks) to create bubbles that cause a lot of suffering fro those priced out of ‘the market’. Why should housing be a market?

            No envy here mate – outrage – quite different from envy when viewed from a moral perspective. ‘Politics of envy’ is of course an empty right-wing slogan mouthed by the privileged.

  6. greywarshark 6

    savenz
    This below from your comment, is good. But banning foreign investors from buying existing homes is overdue, not too late. Action now would slowdown the ‘fever’ in property buying.

    Banning foreign investors by buying existing homes is too late, how about zero homes for foreign investors, maybe they should invest in something else business related in this country? The level of community and council land being developed into retirement homes, shoddy apartments and corporate welfare shopping malls turning our cities into some sort of Thai style glitz with slum developments often with foreign money.

    Basically the neo libs have majorly stuffed up with their economics. They have grabbed as much money as they can get, and now are uncertain what to do with it. They can hold onto it for a while because of the low inflation focus, but it is sloshing around looking for a home. Housing isn’t controlled by low inflation targets and is free to rise exponentially so they obviously want to push their money in there.

    Instead of playing fair in the economic cycle and paying a living wage, being considerate of people like themselves and also our nurturing environment and not ripping both off they do what? With their pocket money they go into sports corruption. There is money to be made from playing games with the games and past-times of the masses. On Radionz yesterday there was an Asian corporate mentioned with turnover annually of $54 billion, compared to Adidas that makes physical objects and reaches $10 billion annually. (e&oe on my figures quoted)

    http://www.radionz.co.nz/audio/player/201797033
    Declan Hill on fighting sports corruption
    With two high profile sporting events fast approaching, the Rio Olympics and Euro 2016 in France, what chance is there of fans continuing to get any pleasure from watching professional sport?
    Declan Hill is one of the world’s foremost experts on match-fixing and corruption in international sports. He was the first person to show the new danger to international sport posed by the globalization of the gambling market and match-fixing at the highest levels of professional football including the Champions League and FIFA World Cup tournaments.
    Part of his first book ‘The Fix: Organized Crime and Soccer’ details his involvement with an Asian match-fixing gang as they travelled around the world to fix major football matches. His second book was called ‘The Insider’s Guide to Match-Fixing’.

    From Nine To Noon on 14 Apr 2016
    edited

  7. Olwyn 7

    I want to see intended results spelled out in black and white. I am not persuaded by a series of moves A, B and C that point toward a vaguely outlined but desirable end. It offers no criterion for measuring the success of A, B and C, or recommending their adjustment where necessary. Thus it comes across as a pitch more than a commitment. What is deemed an affordable house? If an affordable house is only affordable to those with reliable, above average incomes and parents able to stump up with a deposit, will steps be made to ensure a supply of affordable rental accommodation, including state or social housing? If people are to be pushed to the outer edges of the city, will the infrastructure necessary to a fledgling community be part of the deal? Are we aiming for a mix of rich and poor across all or most areas, or continuing the trend toward stratification based on wealth? At least some of these questions, and others like them, need to be answered to raise the above claims from a pitch to a set of practical propositions.

    • Draco T Bastard 7.1

      +1

      All I see from the above is Labour clinging desperately on to the failed policies of the last thirty years rather than looking for and enacting the necessary changes.

    • Colonial Viper 7.2

      Exactly. All these fall into the category of policy gestures, nothing more. Affordable homes = 4x household income, MAX.

      So let’s look at the reality here – none of these steps is going to make Auckland home ownership anywhere near within reach for the median household income of $80K pa.

      Let alone households trying to get by on a single full time median income of $45K to $50K pa.

      The reason for this is simple – no government Labour or National, will force a fall in today’s utterly unaffordable house values.

      The policy setting this nation needs – but again, neither Labour or National will approach – is that we need to get people out of Auckland and into the regions.

  8. Draco T Bastard 8

    We need to crack down on speculators, starting off by banning non-resident foreigners from buying existing homes.

    No, we need to ban offshore ownership altogether so that NZers aren’t priced out of the market by people who don’t even live here.

    Over the last 25 years the urban boundary, along with the density restrictions, have stopped Auckland building up and out during a time of rapid population increase.

    Nothing wrong with the urban boundary. In fact, it’s essential as cities cannot expand indefinitely due to lack of land and the fact that sprawl itself is uneconomic. Expanding the boundaries will not help.

    That means the problem is the height restrictions which prevent cities from building upwards.

    The big problem with the urban growth boundary is that it creates an artificial scarcity of land

    No, the land really is scarce. Nobody’s creating any more of it.

    We believe there are better ways to manage growth on the city fringes

    Shut it down altogether as it’s uneconomic.

    Our policy is to finance infrastructure using local government bonds paid off through a targeted rate on the properties in the new development.

    Better idea just to have the local council create the money to build the infrastructure needed and then cover it with rates. No interest that way.

  9. Tony Veitch (not the partner-bashing 3rd rate broadcaster) 9

    Part of the problem is the housing bubble. So, how about this for a solution:

    a) immediately cease paying the Accommodation Supplement.

    b) immediately limit rentals to 25% of income.

    Drastic huh? But think it through – all speculators would be caught with pressing mortgages and little income to service those mortgages. House prices would plunge – putting affordable housing within reach of new home buyers. Banks, with millions of unserviceable debts on their hands, would be forced to take the loss. And, there would be a huge demand, from the top, for affordable wages so landlords could get some return!

    Not that I expect anything like this to happen!

    • Stuart Munro 9.1

      Rather than relate rent caps to income, cap rents per square meter – that reduces landlords conspiring to evict low-income families and reduces the attractiveness of real estate investment which is causing the problem. Get Auckland city to institute a punitive tax on empty housing too – so investors don’t use that trick.

      We need a Solonian reform – redirecting capital from non-productive rent-seeking real estate bubbles into productive enterprise.

      No chance of that from this stupid and irresponsible government of course. They still think they’re rockstars.

    • AmaKiwi 9.2

      “immediately cease paying the Accommodation Supplement.”

      The Accommodation Supplement is one of the sneakiest political tricks ever invented. Those receiving it think it is some sort of benefit to them. They rarely appreciate its purpose is to put extra money into their landlords’ pockets, artificially driving up rents throughout lower class communities.

      Political result? Both poor and rich will scream bloody murder if we try to abolish it. But we should.

  10. Colonial Viper 10

    Why does this Labour proposal not force property divestment and an end to foreign Chinese ownership of Auckland housing?

    This was a major issue that Labour raised last year, which it said was a huge deal in high Auckland house prices.

    So where is their initiative to turn this around? Why have they left this critical issue off the list?

    Are they going to follow through on what they started last year?

    • TC 10.1

      +100

      What did you expect from a fully paid member of the ABC club.

      • Colonial Viper 10.1.1

        Makes me think that Labour’s Chinese sounding last names finger pointing last year was all about cynical vote winning PR and populism, not guts and not substance.

        • Visubversa 10.1.1.1

          There are streets on Auckland’s North Shore where 90% of the properties are owned by people with “Chinese sounding names”. The houses are all 5 or 6 bedroom, 6 bathroom monstrosities built to the maximum building coverage. Who will want to live in them in 20 years?

          • Colonial Viper 10.1.1.1.1

            I was living in Auckland when they were building these pieces of shite in the 2000s.

            And now they are building very similar in Christchurch. Hundreds of them 200m2 300m2 400m2 floor area houses. For top dollar buyers.

            Nothing affordable. Nothing for if you’re earning $90K pa even.

            It’s fucking nuts.

            • Ad 10.1.1.1.1.1

              We looked pretty carefully over the last three months at buying another apartment in town over the last few months, but we view the current prices as bubble-like and too risky.

              We’ve seen a lot of people who own apartments that they have leased out to hotels, simply withdraw them from hotel rental because the rental as an apartment per week is now far superior and more stable. Net effect is 0% hotel vacancy in the CBD.

              Our view is simply to offset the savings against the remaining mortgage, keep the remaining rentals yielding high, and wait for the pop of the bubble to hit. Plus count down the years to Wanaka.

              We don’t like the degree of vulnerability that this government has led us down. Even our major local landlord investors we know are pulling right back.

              • Colonial Viper

                sounds sensible. limiting your downside at this stage of the cycle is a very good idea.

  11. Ad 11

    His proposal of a National Policy Statement on housing rolls hard over the top of Auckland Council and the many vested interests who pressured them into the absurd Unitary Plan coming to vote in July. In fact it guts the powers of democracy at a local level in every metropolitan council.

    That is a massive political call against the Property Council, the banks, the real estate agents, and the ratepayer groups and their lawyers.

    Twyford will need nerves of steel and all power to him.

  12. Nice to see someone actually coming up with some solutions to solve this very serious issue. The current crop in government don’t seem to care less about it.

  13. Tanz 13

    Part of the problem is that many MP’s , from both sides, own rental properties. They are feathering their own nests, and too bad for those left out in the cold. The overseas investors are the elephant in the room, but no one in the House ever speaks that truth. It’s such a betrayal and royal sellout. What happened to a NZ that cared about its fellow humans?

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  • An odious bill
    The government has decided that someone has done Something Bad. But despite their belief, there seems to be no evidence that they have actually broken the law. So the government's solution is to pass a retrospective law allowing them to be punished anyway, on a lower standard of proof. If ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • National is now the party of climate arson
    So, Judith Collins has done a Facebook rant about climate change, peddling the same shit National has been shovelling for the past twenty years: the impacts are overstated, there's no need to do anything about it, and its too hard anyway (oh, and its so unfair that people who peddle ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • The environmental footprint of electric versus fossil car
    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 There is a lot of discussion on the benefits of ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 days ago
  • “Manifest” by Andrew Bird – A Song For The Times.
    I came across this song quite by accident. If it isn't one of Greta Thunberg's favourites - it should be.Video courtesy of YouTube.This post is exclusive to Bowalley Road. ...
    2 days ago
  • Passing the buck
    Last month, NZDF's shoddy coverup of what it knew about civilian casualties in Operation Burnham began to fall apart, with the revelation that a report on the matter, which NZDF claimed not to have, had been sitting in an NZDF safe for the past nine years. Yesterday, the man responsible ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • India a major player in Earth observation satellites
    While many imagine that countries like the USA and Europe dominate space activities, in fact India is now a major player on this stage. It launches satellites for its own purposes and also commercially, and has constellations orbiting our planet and returning data of vital importance to that nation in ...
    SciBlogsBy Duncan Steel
    3 days ago
  • The rot at the top (2).
    Thanks to a report from the Acting Inspector General of Intelligence and Security following a complaint by Nicky Hager, we have come to find out that the SIS illegally spied on Mr. Hager on behalf of the NZDF after publication of Hager’s 2011 book, Other People’s Wars. The NZDF justified ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    3 days ago
  • Common misconceptions about “Global Warming”
    COMMON MISCONCEPTIONS ABOUT GLOBAL WARMING MYTH 1: Global temperatures are rising at a rapid, unprecedented rate. FACT: The HadCRUT3 surface temperature index, produced by the Hadley Centre of the UK Met Office and the Climate Research Unit of the University of East Anglia, shows warming to 1878, cooling to 1911, ...
    An average kiwiBy admin@averagekiwi.com
    3 days ago
  • A climate of tyranny
    For the past week, Extinction Rebellion has been peacefully protesting in London to demand action on climate change. The British government's response? Ban their protests:Police have banned Extinction Rebellion protests from continuing anywhere in London, as they moved in almost without warning to clear protesters who remained at the movement’s ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • Collins crushes climate
    An essay by Judith Collins MP reported on Carbon News yesterday seems to show an alarming shift in attitude within the National Party. Collins argues against the Zero Carbon Bill, the Paris Agreement, and downplays the magnitude of climate impacts. The Paris Agreement was adopted in December 2015 and ratified ...
    SciBlogsBy Robert McLachlan
    3 days ago
  • More disappointment
    When they were running for election, Labour promised to overhaul the Employment Relations Act and introduce fair pay agreements to set basic pay and conditions on an industry level, preventing bad employers from undercutting good ones. They followed this up by establishing a working group, which reported back in January ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • What do these mother-child studies really say about fluoridation?
    A list of indicators of bad science – many of these are found in articles promoted by anti-fluoride activists. Anti-fluoride activists have been pouring money into a scaremongering campaign warning pregnant women not to drink fluoridated water. They claim fluoride will lower the IQ of their future child. Fluoride ...
    3 days ago
  • Losing Labour’s Mills-Tone.
    Nothing Left To Say: Labour's pollster, Stephen Mills, remains swaddled-up in the comforting myths of the 1980s. As if the experience of Roger Douglas’s genuinely radical post-Muldoon policy agenda was literally a once-in-a-lifetime thing – as much as the party could possibly absorb for at least the next 50 years.MEMO ...
    3 days ago
  • Speaker: Disability and the Royal Commission of Inquiry into Historical Abuse
    The Royal Commission on abuse in care is very significant for the disability community. For many decades last century, thousands of disabled children, and adults who managed to survive, were locked away from families and communities. This was not for anything they had done, but for the perceived threat their ...
    3 days ago
  • Spain is not a democracy
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • UK Conservatives hate democracy
    With an unfair voting system, uneven electorates and an un-elected upper house, the UK's "democracy" is barely worthy of the name. But now the government wants to make it worse:The government has been accused of suppressing voters’ rights with the potential disenfranchisement of tens of thousands of people after plans ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • What is wrong with our building industry?
    Back in the 90's and early 2000's, the building industry was building leaky homes which should never have been granted consent. Now it turns out they've been building dodgy office blocks as well:New imaging technology has revealed hundreds of major buildings nationwide have defective or missing concrete or reinforcing steel. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • Local bodies
    Local body election results were released over the weekend, to joy or despair depending on where you live. In Auckland, Phil Goff trounced John Tamihere, who is muttering darkly about running for Parliament again (but which party would want him?) Wellington is now a wholly-owned subsidiary of Weta Workshop, except ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • A future of government
      How could government evolve over the next decades? Reports of democracy’s imminent demise are greatly exaggerated.  However, satisfaction with political systems in many countries is low, so there is much to do for governments of all political stripes to improve relevance and trust. Digital technologies are seen as one ...
    SciBlogsBy Robert Hickson
    6 days ago
  • Speaker: Catalonia, interrupted
    Two years have now gone by since the Friday afternoon when my university-student son and I headed out of our Barcelona flat to a nearby primary school, designated as a polling station for the vote that was to be held the following Sunday: the referendum on Catalonia’s independence from Spain ...
    6 days ago
  • Sage Decisions Unwisely Over-Ruled.
    Overruled: The joint decision of Finance Minister, Grant Robertson (Labour) and his Associate Minister, David Parker (Labour) arguably the two most powerful ministers in Jacinda Ardern’s government, to grant OceanaGold the consents which Land Information Minister, Eugenie Sage (Greens) had earlier denied them, offers bitter proof of how hard fighting ...
    6 days ago
  • Government may ban voting in effort to get more people to do it
    More than double the number of people who will vote in this year’s local body elections have tried marijuana or urinated somewhere they shouldn’t have. As local elections look set for the lowest turnout in decades, with many regions falling well short of 40%, the Government is exploring a number ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    7 days ago
  • Woman: Deleted.
    A Statement on Abortion Law Reform by the Council of Disobedient Women   On the eve of bringing an end to antiquated, anti-women abortion laws Green MP Jan Logie intends to write women out of the Bill. With a stroke of the pen, the woke are aiming for total erasure ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    7 days ago
  • The Hollowest of Men Ride Again… SURPRISE!
    Musings continue apace about “the experienced businessman!” soon to be taking up a National Party MP position. Or to be more accurate, being parachuted into a seat to shut down their former MP Jamie-Lee Ross, who despite his own shortcomings shed at least some more light on the inner workings ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    7 days ago
  • Barbaric
    The Ugandan government wants to murder gay people:Uganda has announced plans to impose the death penalty on homosexuals. The bill, colloquially known as “Kill the Gays” in Uganda, was nullified five years ago on a technicality, but the government said on Thursday it plans to resurrect it within weeks. The ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Fighting Monsters.
    Freedom Of Speech? The Säuberung (cleansing by fire) was the work of the German Student Union which, on 10 May 1933, under the watchful eye of the Nazi Reichminister for Propaganda, Joseph Goebbels, consigned 25,000 books to the flames in a ritual exorcism of “un-German thought”. According to the logic of the ...
    1 week ago
  • The next wave of kaupapa Māori politics: its constitutional, it must be.
      “There can be no such thing as kaupapa Māori political parties or politics in Aotearoa” (Willie Jackson, Labour Party (2017). Māori TV, General/List Election Special) I begin with that claim because at the time, I was confounded at first that it fell out of Willie Jackson’s mouth, and then ...
    EllipsisterBy Ellipsister
    1 week ago
  • Night lights of NZ from orbit
    New Zealand has prided itself for decades with regard to its lack of pollution, and all will be aware that the ‘100% Pure New Zealand‘ meme is under threat through land, water and air pollution of various causes. There is another type of contamination that the country also faces: light ...
    SciBlogsBy Duncan Steel
    1 week ago
  • Reporters deliver uplifting news to fleeing Japanese residents: they won’t miss any rugby
    New Zealand’s media is doing its part in Japan, reassuring those in the path of the storm that they won’t miss any rugby while away from their flooded homes. New Zealand sports reporters stationed in Japan for the Rugby World Cup have had the rare and heartwarming opportunity to inform ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • Government in contentious discussions about whether to put surplus on red or black
    Regional Development Minister Shane Jones is the only Cabinet member in favour of putting it all on green. As Finance Minister Grant Robertson finds himself with an enormous $7.5 billion surplus, the Government has begun intense, at times contentious conversations about whether to put the money on red or black at ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • Jordanian teachers’ successful strike has lessons for here
    by Susanne Kemp At the start of September close to 100,000 school teachers went on strike in Jordan.  They demanded a 50% pay rise.  A pay rise actually agreed to by the regime back in 2014. In early October, however, in the face of government repression and threats, the teachers’ ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Why some people still think climate change isn’t real
    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 Why do people still think climate change isn’t real? David ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • The SIS unlawfully spied on Nicky Hager
    Back in 2011, journalist Nicky Hager published Other People's Wars, an expose on NZDF's activities over the previous decade of the "war on terror". NZDF didn't like this, and especially didn't like the fact that it was base don leaks from their own. So, they had the SIS investigate him ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • October 2019 – Newsletter
    https://mailchi.mp/7d9133add053/closing-the-gap-october-2019-newsletter ...
    Closing the GapBy Tracey Sharp
    1 week ago
  • And they wonder why we think they’re environmental vandals…
    The Zero Carbon Bill is due back from select committee in two weeks, and will likely pass its final stages in November. So naturally, farmers are planning a hate-march against it. But they're not just demanding lower methane targets so they can keep on destroying the planet; they're also demanding ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: Paying the price in California
    Last year, California burned. This year, to stop it happening again (or rather, to stop themselves from being found liable if it happens again), Pacific Gas and Electric is cutting power to half the state for a week:Schools are closed. Traffic lights down. Tunnels dark. Businesses unopened. Hospitals running on ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Let’s Hear It For Up-Close-And-Personal, Hard-Copy Democracy!
    The Best Way: Missing from the on-line voting debate is any reference to the voting system that produces turn-out figures ranging from 77 to 93 percent of registered voters. The voting system used to collect and count the votes cast in our parliamentary elections. The system that involves citizens making ...
    1 week ago
  • 10/10: World Day Against the Death Penalty
    Today, October 10, is the world day against the death penalty. Out of 195 UN member states, 84 still permit capital punishment. Today is the day we work to change that. This year's theme is children. Having a parent sentenced to death or executed causes long-term trauma and stigmatization which ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Talking Freer Lives: a Marxist gender-critical perspective from Australia
    Among the great new bunch of political friends we have been making recently is the excellent Australian-based Marxist gender-critical site, Freer Lives.  So we asked the comrade who set up that blog to write something for Redline on the blog, himself, his analysis of the rise of gender politics and ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Government spin accepted by union leadership
    by Don Franks  The Auckland City Mission is struggling with a 40 percent increase in demand for food parcels this year. A total of 23,020 were needed by June. Last month Missioner Chris Farrelly told the Herald the “cupboards are bare” and without an emergency food drive, he can’t see ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Forbidden Thoughts
    by The Council of Disobedient Women   Massey Wellington Student Association had a sit-in today. Imagine a sit-in. On a campus. Against a women’s rights meeting. Did the ’60s really happen or did we fucking dream it? They gathered in the student square, an echo chamber. Sitting on soft pillows ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Much love to my loyal Ukrainian readership
    For some reasons, my post about the mystery message from inside the Downing Street bunker seemed to catch people's attention.  Quite a lot of hits from NZ (unsurprisingly) and the USA (a bit more puzzlingly, but hi there, USAians!!) and 76 views from the Ukraine.I've celebrated my Ukrainian readers in ...
    1 week ago
  • Another day of bonkers GNUmours (again, sorry)
    First, almost a score of Labour MPs seem to have sent a letter to the EU basically begging them to accept a deal - any deal - just so Britain can get the Heck on with Brexiting instead of being trapped in limbo:
    To avoid no deal, deliver on the ...
    1 week ago
  • Labour vs working class immigrants – again!
    by Phil Duncan In 2016 the National-led government suspended the Parent Visa Category, through which migrants were able to bring their parents into New Zealand.  Since then over 5,700 people have been in immigration limbo, stuck on the visa wait list. Labour is now bringing back the scheme.  Well, sort ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Speak Up for Women press statement: on Massey University and Feminism 2020
    The following was released yesterday (Tues, October 8) by the women’s liberation organisation Speak Up for Women. On 23 September Speak Up For Women announced that we would be holding an event at the Massey University Theaterette in Wellington. The event is called Feminism 2020. The intention of the event ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Farmers support dirty rivers
    The government is currently consulting on plans to improve freshwater quality. So naturally, farmers oppose it:South Taranaki farmers are preparing to fight proposed national freshwater changes that some fear will bankrupt them. The Government's proposed National Environment Standard on Freshwater Management, released in September, rated the Waingongoro River as one ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • No-one cares about local government
    Yesterday was the last day for (reliably) posting your vote away in local body elections. Turnouts are mostly much lower than the equivalent time last year (Palmerston North is down 2.3%), and so naturally people are pushing their online-voting snake oil again. Because the online census worked so well, lets ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • The political ghosts of eugenics may matter more than the genetic
    This essay, on the political legacy of the eugenics movement, by Kenan Malik was originally published in the Observer on 6 October 2019, under the headline ‘The spirit of eugenics is still with us, as immigrants know to their cost’. Birth control. Intelligence tests. Town planning. Immigration controls. It’s striking how ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • “Surplus” again
    Another year, and the government has announced another enormous government "surplus". And just like last year, its nothing of the sort. When we have people homeless and sick and hungry, when we have schools and hospitals still falling down, when we have underpaid public servants and infrastucture unmaintained or unbuilt, ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Inside the Downing Street bunker
    James Forsyth at The Spectator (I know, I know) has tapped one of his contacts inside Number Ten for an insight into the Johnson administration's thinking and strategy.It is fascinating, unsettling and quite, quite mad.  Some key points:Negotiations have stalled and the Johnson administration are keen to blame the EU: ...
    1 week ago
  • Taking Control Of The Nation’s Story.
    Fatal Contact: With the arrival of captain James Cook in October 1769, the islands of what would become New Zealand ceased to be the preserve of Polynesian navigators and settlers and became a part of both the world’s map and the world’s history.THE MAORI NATIONALIST assault upon the historical meaning ...
    1 week ago
  • Are GNUs extinct?
    Another round of tactical talks about forming a Government of National Unity have come to nothing with the Liberal Democrats still refusing countenance putting Jeremy Corbyn into Downing Street:Opposition talks on Monday made little headway over when to try and vote down Boris Johnson's government and who might succeed him as ...
    1 week ago
  • Labour chickens out again
    When the government was elected, it promised to lead the way on electric vehicles, and specifically to make the government vehicle fleet emissions-free where-practicable by 2025.They lied:There are 15,473 vehicles in the government fleet and only 78 are electric. When the coalition Government came into power in late 2017, the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Transgender extremism, violence at work against feminist meeting at British Labour Party conference
    by Nick Rogers The debate around the meaning of sex and gender made an appearance at this year’s British Labour Party conference in Brighton. Women’s Place UK – an organisation that questions the demand that biological males who self-identify as woman should have access to women’s spaces, to all-women shortlists, ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Rebelling in Wellington
    Yesterday I went down to Wellington to participate in the Extinction Rebellion protest. Its part of the latest global wave of XR actions, with actions happening all over the world. Some of those protests are massively disruptive: in Canada, XR is blocking major bridges, stopping people from getting to work. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • ‘The Workshop’ – Report: Talking about Poverty and Welfare Reform: A Guide to Strategies that ...
    The Workshop is a charitable trust for public good. The Workshop undertake research to find ways of communicating that will build support for the solutions that work to solve complex social and environmental problems. See their Report on Talking about Poverty and Welfare Reform below. ...
    Closing the GapBy Tracey Sharp
    2 weeks ago
  • Exclusive language
    What is language? We generally assume that it a facility unique to humans, allowing us to share what’s in and on our minds. We can tell of our plans, our past exploits, our knowledge. It also allows us to lie. And yet there are vast numbers of people we can’t ...
    SciBlogsBy Michael Corballis
    2 weeks ago
  • April 2018 – Submission to the NZ Govt Tax Working Group
    You can read our submission HERE ...
    Closing the GapBy Tracey Sharp
    2 weeks ago
  • 2018 – Submission to the NZ Government Tax Working Group
    Read our submission here ...
    Closing the GapBy Tracey Sharp
    2 weeks ago
  • Guardian: Poll shows DISASTER for Corbyn and the End of Times
    The Guardian - ever eager to forewarn of doom and disaster on the left - are leading with a new poll from Opinium, which puts the Conservatives 15% clear of Labour.Con 38% +2Lab 23% -1Lib Dem 15% -5Brexit 12% +1Green 4% +2This isn't good news, and it would be very ...
    2 weeks ago
  • How prostitution became the world’s most modern profession
    Being and Being Bought (Spinifex Press, 2013) by Kajsa Ekis Ekman  A synopsis and commentary of Chapters 1-2 by Daphna Whitmore Ekman, a Swedish journalist and critic, brings together a Marxist and feminist analysis of prostitution and surrogacy in this groundbreaking book She opens the discussion with a definition of ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    2 weeks ago
  • Clever legal fellow on Scottish challenge to Brexit
    I make no claims to having much legal knowledge,  so I defer to those trained in this area.I am very much enjoying this twitter stream from m'learned friend in Edinburgh, deciphering the legal arguments around the Scottish court challenge to Boris Johnson, based on the charmingly obscure principle of Nobile ...
    2 weeks ago
  • An Open Letter From Closed Minds.
    Ivory Folly? The University of Auckland’s Vice-Chancellor, Professor Stuart McCutcheon, upheld the right of the radical nationalist group, Action Zealandia to exercise their freedom of speech – not matter how distasteful that speech might be. A wiser community of students and scholars would have nodded their agreement and moved on. ...
    2 weeks ago

  • Bill to refresh superannuation system passes first reading
    Social Development Minister Carmel Sepuloni has welcomed the first reading of the New Zealand Superannuation and Veteran’s Pension Legislation Amendment Bill. “Every New Zealander has a stake in New Zealand Superannuation and Veteran’s Pension,” says Carmel Sepuloni. “They are our most common form of social assistance – nearly 800,000 New ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    15 mins ago
  • Government announces next steps in fight against measles
    Babies in Auckland aged six months and over can receive a free vaccination and children will all have access to vaccines, Associate Minister of Health Julie Anne Genter announced today at Papatoetoe High School.   The move comes as part of Government efforts to step up the fight against measles. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    33 mins ago
  • Speech to the New Zealand Institute of International Affairs, Pacific Futures: Connections, Identity...
    ***Check against delivery*** Good morning. It is a pleasure to be here, and to have the honour of opening this important conference on behalf of the New Zealand Institute of International Affairs. Let us take the opportunity to acknowledge all the people who have helped make today possible, including our special ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 hours ago
  • Police trial new response to high risk events
    Police Minister Stuart Nash says the safety of frontline officers and members of the public will be the focus of a new trial of specialist Police response teams in three of our largest urban centres. Police have this morning released details of an initiative to be trialled in Counties Manukau, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 hours ago
  • New awards celebrate fisheries sustainability
    The Minister of Fisheries is calling for entries for a new public award to celebrate innovation in our seafood sector. “I have established the Seafood Sustainability Awards to recognise and celebrate those throughout industry, tangata whenua and communities who demonstrate outstanding dedication and innovation towards the sustainability of New Zealand’s ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 hours ago
  • More progress for women and we can do more
    Minister for Women Julie Anne Genter welcomes leaders in the private sector taking action on closing their gender pay gaps to ensure a fairer workplace for all New Zealanders. Ms Genter today launched a new report, Addressing the gender pay gap and driving women’s representation in senior leadership, from the Champions for ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    8 hours ago
  • Proposals to curb environmental damage help our coasts and the oceans
    Government Ministers today welcomed the release of a marine environment report highlighting the four key issues affecting our oceans, estuaries and coastlines.  The release underlines the importance of government proposals to combat climate pollution, ensure clean freshwater, protect biodiversity, make land use more sustainable, and reduce waste and plastic.    Environment ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    19 hours ago
  • New mental health facility for Waikato
    The Government has approved funding for a new acute mental health facility for Waikato which will provide better care and support to people with mental health and addiction issues. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Health Minister Dr David Clark announced the $100 million project to replace the aging Henry Rongomau ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    24 hours ago
  • 500 new te reo Māori champions in our classrooms
    The Government is making progress on its goal to integrate te reo Māori into education by 2025, with over 500 teachers and support staff already graduating from Te Ahu o te Reo Māori,  Associate Education Minister Kelvin Davis announced today. Kelvin Davis made the announcement at an awards ceremony in Waikanae today, for ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Minister James Shaw welcomes 2018 Census first release
    Statistics Minister James Shaw has welcomed the first release of 2018 Census data. The first release of data today, 23 September, includes key data on population, regional growth, the number of homes and the size of different ethnic groups in New Zealand. Data from the 2018 Census will support the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Driving transparency, ethics and accountability in government use of algorithms
    Minister for Statistics James Shaw today announced a public consultation on a proposed algorithm charter for government agencies. The charter has been developed by the Government Chief Data Steward in response to growing calls for more transparency in government use of data. Computer algorithms – procedures or formulas for solving ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • New Zealand and the Netherlands working together on climate change
    Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor, Climate Change Minister James Shaw and visiting Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte co-hosted a business roundtable in Auckland this morning focused on working together to address climate change.  “The Netherlands is an important partner for New Zealand. We share a strong agricultural history. Sustainable agribusiness and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Protecting fairness for workers and businesses
    The Government is taking action to build an inclusive economy where more of us receive our fair share at work and businesses can compete on great products and services, not undercutting wages and conditions, Immigration and Workplace Relations and Safety Minister Iain Lees-Galloway says. Two consultations launched today seek feedback ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Indigenous Freshwater Fish Bill Passes
    The future for New Zealand’s threatened indigenous freshwater fish looks brighter with the passing of the Conservation (Indigenous Freshwater Fish) Amendment Bill in Parliament today said Minister of Conservation, Eugenie Sage. “Until now, our freshwater fish legislation has been 20 years out of date. We have lacked effective tools to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Kiwis to take part in world’s biggest earthquake drill
    At 1.30pm tomorrow, hundreds of thousands of Kiwis will join about 65 million people around the globe in ShakeOut, the world’s biggest earthquake drill. The annual drill is to remind people of the right action to take during an earthquake which is to Drop, Cover, Hold, and to practise their ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Rising wages and low inflation supporting Kiwis
    Kiwis are benefiting from higher wage growth and low inflation under the Coalition Government. Stats NZ data out today shows the rise in the cost of living remains low, as annual Consumers Price Index (CPI) inflation fell to 1.5% in September from 1.7% in June. “The low inflation comes as ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • NZ economy strong amid global headwinds
    New Zealand’s economic strength and resilience has been recognised in a major update on the state of the global economy. The IMF’s latest World Economic Outlook released overnight shows a reduced global growth forecast over the next two years as issues like the US-China trade war and Brexit take hold. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Keeping New Zealanders safer with better counter-terrorism laws
    Justice Minister Andrew Little has today introduced a new Bill to prevent terrorism and support the de-radicalisation of New Zealanders returning from overseas. The Terrorism Suppression (Control Orders) Bill gives the New Zealand Police the ability to apply to the High Court to impose control orders on New Zealanders who ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Improved succession and dispute resolution core of Ture Whenua changes
    A Bill that proposes targeted changes to simplify the processes for Māori land owners when engaging with the Māori Land Court has had its First Reading today. “The approach taken by the Government is to ensure that the protection of Māori land remains a priority as we seek to improve ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Speech to CTU Biennial Conference
    Let me first thank all the new unionists and members in the room. There is nothing more important to improving people’s working lives than people making the decision to care, to get on board and help, to take up the reins and get involved. Congratulations to you. You bring the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Minister ensures continued Whenuapai flight operations
    Minister of Defence Ron Mark has signed a certificate exempting the activity of engine testing at Whenuapai Airbase from the Resource Management Act 1991. The Act gives the Minister of Defence the power to exempt activities for the purposes of national security.  The certificate will mean the recent Environment Court ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • NZ joins Coalition of Finance Ministers for Climate Action
    Finance Minister Grant Robertson has announced New Zealand will join the Coalition of Finance Ministers for Climate Action while attending APEC meetings in Chile. The objective of the 39 member Coalition is to share information and promote action to tackle climate change. It was formed in April this year, in ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • CTU speech – DPM
    Ladies and gentlemen, NZCTU President Richard Wagstaff, members of respective unions – thank you for the invitation to speak to you today. This might be preaching to the choir, but the importance of trade unions in New Zealand’s historical arch is difficult to understate. And it is my belief that ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Police Association Annual Conference
    "Let’s start by acknowledging that it has been a huge year. " Police Association Annual Conference James Cook Grand Chancellor Hotel Wellington Nau mai, haere mai. Tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou, ka nui te mihi, ki a koutou katoa. President of the Police Association, Chris Cahill; Members of the Association and ...
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    3 days ago
  • New Zealand announces a further P-3 deployment in support of UN sanctions
    Minister of Foreign Affairs Winston Peters and Minister of Defence Ron Mark have announced the New Zealand Government’s decision to again deploy a Royal New Zealand Air Force P-3K2 (P-3) maritime patrol aircraft to support the implementation of United Nations Security Council (UNSC) resolutions imposing sanctions against North Korea. New ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • New Zealand deeply concerned at developments in north-east Syria
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters says New Zealand continues to have serious concerns for peace and stability in north-east Syria. “Recent reports that hundreds of ISIS-affiliated families have fled from a camp are deeply concerning from a humanitarian and security perspective”, Mr Peters says. “While we acknowledge Turkey’s domestic security ...
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    3 days ago
  • Government on high alert for stink bugs
    Biosecurity Minister Damien O’Connor is warning travelling Kiwis to be vigilant as the high-season for the crop-eating brown marmorated stink bug (BMSB) is under way. “We’re on high alert to stop BMSB arriving in NZ. The high season runs until April 30 and we’ve strengthened our measures to stop stink ...
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    3 days ago
  • Better protections for students in halls of residence
    The Government is moving swiftly to change the law to improve the welfare and pastoral care of students living in university halls of residence and other tertiary hostels. Cabinet has agreed to several changes, including creating a new mandatory Code of Practice that sets out the duty of pastoral care ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • New trapping guide for community and expert trappers alike
    The Minister for Conservation Eugenie Sage has launched a new comprehensive trapping guide for community trappers to help them protect our native birds, plants and other wildlife, at Zealandia in Wellington today. ‘A practical guide to trapping’, has been developed by the Department of Conservation (DOC), and was launched during ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Widening Access to Contraceptives Welcomed
    Associate Health Minister Julie Anne Genter welcomes PHARMAC’s move to improve access to long-acting reversible contraception (LARCs). PHARMAC has today announced it will fund the full cost of Mirena and Jaydess for anyone seeking long term contraception, lifting previous restrictions on access to Mirena. “I welcome women having greater choices ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Major upgrade for Taranaki Base Hospital
    The Government has approved the next stage of a major redevelopment of Taranaki Base Hospital, which will deliver new and improved facilities for patients. Health Minister Dr David Clark has announced details of a $300 million dollar project to build a new East Wing at the New Plymouth hospital. It ...
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    5 days ago
  • Extra support for rural families
    Extra funding will allow Rural Support Trusts to help farming families, says Minister for Rural Communities and Agriculture Damien O’Connor. “I know that rural families are worried about some of the challenges facing them, including the ongoing uncertainty created by the Mycoplasma bovis outbreak. “Those concerns sit alongside ongoing worries ...
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    6 days ago
  • Howard Leaque Beekeeper programme graduation
    Thank you for the opportunity to be here to present certificates to the 16 graduates who have completed a beekeeping course delivered by the Howard League.  Let us start by acknowledging Auckland Prison’s Deputy Prison Director Tom Sherlock, and Acting Assistant Regional Commissioner of Corrections Northern Region Scott Walker - ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Finance Minister to attend APEC meetings
    Finance Minister Grant Robertson leaves this weekend to attend the APEC Finance Ministers meeting in Santiago, Chile. Discussions between APEC Finance Ministers at the meeting will include the effects of the current global economic uncertainty, risks for APEC economies and sustainable development of the region. While at APEC Grant Robertson ...
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    7 days ago
  • Pacific languages are a source of strength, they ground us and build confidence
    The Minister for Pacific Peoples Aupito William Sio says for Pacific people, language can be a source of strength. It can help ground us and give us confidence. When we speak them, our languages provide us with an immediate and intimate access to our identity and our story - and ...
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    7 days ago
  • Major boost to support disabled people in sport and recreation
    The Coalition Government has announced an action plan to improve the wellbeing of disabled New Zealanders by addressing inequalities in play, active recreation and sport. The initiative includes training to develop a workforce that understands the needs of children and young people with a range of impairments, advocacy for fit ...
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    7 days ago
  • More prefab homes to be built as red tape cut
    The construction sector is being freed up to allow more homes to be built more quickly as the Government cuts through some of the red tape of the Building Act.  “Every New Zealander deserves a warm, dry, safe home and old inefficiencies in the Building Act make building slow and ...
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    1 week ago
  • Further details of Prince of Wales and Duchess of Cornwall visit to New Zealand
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has welcomed further details on the Prince of Wales and Duchess of Cornwall’s visit to New Zealand next month. Their Royal Highnesses will visit New Zealand from 17-23 November – their third joint visit to New Zealand and first in four years. They arrive in Auckland ...
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    1 week ago
  • O’Connor in Thailand to push for RCEP deal
    Minister of State for Trade and Export Growth and Minister of Agriculture, Damien O’Connor, heads to Thailand today to attend the final Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) Ministerial meeting, as negotiations enter their final stages. “The RCEP Agreement would anchor New Zealand in a regional agreement that covers 16 countries, ...
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    1 week ago
  • Young Pacific people can access earning and learning opportunities in Hawke’s Bay, Otago and South...
    Pacific young people living in the Hawke’s Bay, Southland and Otago regions will have access to support services that have proved successful in helping young people find new earning and learning opportunities. “Tupu Aotearoa is about changing Pacific young peoples’ lives. Our young people are talented, they are smart, they ...
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    1 week ago