Parliament

Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search

 

Modernisation Of Public Trust Takes Another Step

The modernisation of Public trust took another step yesterday with the introduction of the Government's Public Trust Bill.

Established in 1873, Public Trust operates under a 43-year old statute.

Minister in charge of Public Trust, Jim Anderton, said the effects of outdated legislation were highlighted this year when Public Trust reported a loss for the financial year to 30 June 2000.

"Public Trust needs new laws to ensure it can provide services effectively. The Government has ensured that its new direction will not diminish the special place Public Trust has always occupied in New Zealand business and society.

"The new laws ensure Public Trust is retained in public ownership and balance the need to operate a successful enterprise against its social and public responsibilities," Jim Anderton said.

The Bill clarifies ownership of Public Trust. In March 1999 the full bench of the Court of Appeal unanimously ruled that there are no private interests in public Trust reserves.

Confirmation of Crown ownership allows future funding of Public Trust to be put on a proper basis. Public Trust’s present reserves of $77.8 million are far more than it needs. The Bill makes provision for a one-off distribution of surplus funds as well as for the payment of possible future dividends out of annual earnings.

"The Government intends that Public Trust will continue to provide wills free of charge to any New Zealander who wants one if they nominate Public Trust as executor," Jim Anderton said.

"This is a significant activity and one that costs Public Trust millions of dollars a year to provide. While I support free wills as an important public service, Public Trust has been in the position of being required to meet the costs of that service out of other current revenues. The Bill therefore requires that the provision of non-commercial services such as free wills must be formally agreed and the anticipated costs recorded by way of an appropriation.

"This mechanism will not divert additional funds to Public Trust but will make transparent the real costs."

The Bill expressly requires Public Trust to act independently from direction by the Government in managing estates and trusts. Customer privacy and confidentiality is also specifically assured.

The operations and undertaking of the existing Public Trust Office will be vested in a new statutory corporation to be known as Public Trust. Public Trust will cease to be a Government Department, becoming instead a Crown entity.

A Board will be established which will be responsible to the Minister. The Board, rather than the Government, will fix Public Trust interest rates, commissions and other charges:

Ends

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

New Reports: Flood Risk From Rain And Sea Under Climate Change

One report looks at what would happen when rivers are flooded by heavy rain and storms, while the other examines flooding exposure in coastal and harbour areas and how that might change with sea-level rise.

Their findings show that across the country almost 700,000 people and 411,516 buildings worth $135 billion are presently exposed to river flooding in the event of extreme weather events...

There is near certainty that the sea will rise 20-30 cm by 2040. By the end of the century, depending on whether global greenhouse gas emissions are reduced, it could rise by between 0.5 to 1.1 m, which could add an additional 116,000 people exposed to extreme coastal storm flooding. More>>

ALSO:

 
 

Gordon Campbell: On The Commerce Commission Fuel Report

The interim Commerce Commission report on the fuel industry will do nothing to endear the major oil companies to the New Zealand public... More>>

ALSO:

Emergency Govt Bill: Overriding Local Licensing For The Rugby

“It’s pretty clear some clubs are having difficulty persuading their district licensing committees to grant a special licence to extend their hours for this obviously special event, and so it makes sense for Parliament to allow clubs to meet a community desire." More>>

ALSO:

Leaving Contract Early: KiwiBuild Programme Losing Another Top Boss

Ms O'Sullivan began a six-month contract as head of KiwiBuild Commercial in February, but the Housing Ministry has confirmed she has resigned and will depart a month early to take up a new job. More>>

ALSO:

Proposed National Policy Statement: Helping Our Cities Grow Up And Out

“We need a new approach to planning that allows our cities to grow up, especially in city centres and around transport connections. We also have to allow cities to expand in a way that protects our special heritage areas, the natural environment and highly productive land." More>>

ALSO:

Ombudsman's Report: Ngāpuhi Elder 'Shocked' By Conditions At Ngawha Prison

A prominent Ngāpuhi elder is shocked to find inmates at Ngawha Prison are denied water and forced to relieve themselves in the exercise yard... Chief Ombudsman Peter Boshier has released a report highly critical of conditions at the Northland prison. More>>

ALSO:

Promises: Independent Election Policy Costing Unit A Step Closer

The creation of an entity to provide political parties with independent and non-partisan policy costings is a step closer today, according to Finance Minister Grant Robertson and Associate Finance Minister James Shaw. More>>

ALSO:

School's In: Primary And Intermediate Principals Accept New Offer

Primary and intermediate school principals have voted to accept a new settlement from the Ministry of Education, which includes entrenched pay parity with secondary principals. More>>

ALSO:

IPCA On 'Rawshark' Investigation: Multiple Police Failings In Hager Searches Confirmed

The Independent Police Conduct Authority has found that the Police's unlawful search of Nicky Hager's property in October 2014 resulted from an unwitting neglect of duty and did not amount to misconduct by any individual officer... More>>

ALSO:

Broadcasting Standards: Decisions On Coverage Of Mosque Attacks

The Authority upheld one of these complaints, finding that the use of extensive excerpts from the alleged attacker’s livestream video on Sky News New Zealand had the potential to cause significant distress to audiences in New Zealand, and particularly to the family and friends of victims, and the wider Muslim community. More>>

 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

InfoPages News Channels