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Questions Of The Day (7-9, 11,12)

Seaweed Harvesting - Travelling Youth - ATN Tapes - Industrial Relations - Housing Sales

Questions For Oral Answer Wednesday, 8 September 1999

The following are paraphrases of today's questions for oral answer. They are not complete or official, the official record of Parliamentary proceedings is Hansard, which is not finalised some days after the event.


Question 7.

Manu Alamein Kopu to the Minister for Food, Fibre, Biosecurity and Border Control John Luxton

Q: He patai tenei ki te Minita mehemea i korero ia me nga iwi Maori mo te kaupapa whakae tanga ke te hi i te karengo me era atu ahua kai o te Moana - a heaha nga panui me nga whakaaturanga ka puta mai iaia ina kua whaka ture ngia tenei kaupapa inaiahei?

Translation:

Q: Was there any consultation with Maori on the policy to allow for the commercial taking of sea-weed and what publicity and information does he intend to provide on this issue now the policy has been enacted?

A: The process involved lots of consultation and any harvest that takes place will be conducted with sensitivity to cultural uses. Further work will be done on this which will take account of present usage. I am sure that any permits that will be issued will take into account these matters. The change to the moratorium came from strong representations in Opotiki and a factory that makes AGAR which wanted raw material. I also say I had complaints from a member of the Greens that wanted to make fertiliser. When the law stops people doing that it makes the law an ass.

Question 8.

Steve Maharey to the Minister for Tertiary Education Max Bradford:

Q: Was he reflecting Government policy when he reportedly denied that the number of tertiary educated young people leaving the country was cause for alarm; if so, how does that exodus help build a knowledge economy?

A: Tertiary educated people have always traveled - they travel and come back. There is no evidence that this pattern is changing. While overseas they gather skills and knowledge and bring them back which are very important to our knowledge economy. It is not government policy to stop NZers travelling. I wonder if the import of the question indicates that the member is about to announce a Labour Party policy to stop young New Zealanders travelling? There has been no upward trend in professionals in relation to all departures. It has been static at about 25% for several years. Importantly our immigrant population is of a higher skill level than the departures.

Question 9.

Tukoroirangi Morgan to the Minister for State Owned Enterprises Tony Ryall:

Q: Has he received any reports relating to a tape provided to Television New Zealand that could have been produced by the illegal bugging of conversations; if so, what do those reports say?

A: I have received no reports on this from my ministry or TVNZ on this matter I was aware it was raised in question time yesterday.

(Speaker refused any supplementary questions - Tau Henare and Richard Prebble boldly defended Tuku Morgan's right to clear his name - given that he had been sorely attacked in the house (See Scoop Gold - search for ATN and look at early 1997).

Michael Cullen indicated that he would be keen if there were no supplementaries.

Disorder - Tau Henare and Richard Prebble booted out for challenging the chair.

Speaker - I am mindful that we have members of the house in litigation with each other. This cannot be the forum used for that debate.

Donna Huata - ACT - :I seek leave for there to be a supplementary question - denied.

John Carter - National - seeks leave for a supplementary for himself - denied.

Rodney Hide - why does a question get ruled out simply because there is no report.

Speaker - the decision to allow questions is at the discretion of the chair - it is as simple as that.

Tuku Morgan - I seek leave to put by supplmentary - denied.

Sandra Lee - I would like a clear ruling that if the minister simply says no to having received a report are we to lose the opportunity to answer further questions.)


Question 11.

Patricia Schnauer to the Minister for Enterprise and Commerce:

Q: Does the Government have any plans to reduce the number of services defined as an "essential service" in the Employment Contracts Act 1991; if not, why not?

A: The current schedule of essential services requires notice of action from a number of groups and no we do not. The list proposed by Labour - excluding wharves and shipping - would enable wildcat strikes on the Cook Strait Ferries again. We have now got the lowest level of strikes since 1935 and we have the opposition trying to take us back to the days of union domination.

(Harry Dynhoven - the senior government whip made an un-parliamentary remark ("puppet on a string") about Labour's Michael Cullen.

Gerry Brownlee - that remark was made lots of times yesterday to the PM - you ruled it in order.

Speaker - I will not repeat the comment but I have not ruled it to be parliamentary. If the member said another member was in a paid service of an outside organisation then he should withdraw.

Brownlee - the inference was made very strongly yesterday that the PM was a "puppet on a string" in fact it was said - over APEC. We took offence at that and you ruled it in order.

Speaker - the problem yesterday was that I could not find the "actor" - the director who was alleged to control the PM - the comment was in a vacumm - that is different.)

Q: (Michael Cullen - Labour): Is the minister aware that the most recent strike that is occurring is a strike in an essential industry?

A: According to my list it is not. I would like the member to point out where that is the case……. sorry I retract that answer I have the wrong advice….it is and the 14 days notice has been given.

Question 12.

Graham Kelly to the Minister responsible for Housing Corporation of New Zealand:

Q: Does the Government consider the sale of significant numbers of Housing Corporation residential sites to be appropriate within three months of the general election; if so, why?

A: Yes the sale of land is an ongoing activity for the corporation. The sale of land will continue in the future.

Q: Does he accept that the current residential sell-out is a big rip off?

A: No. If he had read the advertisement the land is in Ruatoria, Danniverke, Wanganui, Lower Hutt and a number of other places. We recently sold land to a group of people in Opotiki who are part of a house building scheme for low income families.

Q: (Grant Gillon - Alliance) Does the sale involve land at Albany for Murray McCully's pet millennium project?

A: I have no idea what you are talking about.

(Grant Gillon requested for an official document to be tabled - there wasn't one.)

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