Parliament

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

 

Another Welfare Budget

ACT leader Richard Prebble says the Budget is “an ineffective, visionless document” with half of new spending going on welfare.

“There’s nothing in the Budget for ordinary New Zealanders,” Mr Prebble said.

“There’s nothing for the working poor, the battlers, those who work, pay taxes, didn’t get a pay rise and don’t qualify for a community card.

“There’s nothing for business, nothing to stop the exodus of firms to Australia, nothing to stop the loss of talented New Zealanders, our young graduates, who leave for overseas, having nothing to lose except their student debt and a lifetime of paying 39 cents in the dollar tax.

“There’s nothing in the Budget to close the gaps. The average Maori household is $30 a week worse off. Fifty percent of Maori are paying more tax because they smoke.

“Last year, the slogan was ‘Closing the Gaps’, this time it’s ‘the Transformation Economy’. But the Budget allocates just $192 million over four years - $48 million a year -for the Transformation Economy.

“When you consider that welfare gobbles up $1.5 million every hour, seven days a week, 365 days a year, the amount proposed for the Transformation Economy is just 32 hours of welfare spending.

”Air New Zealand alone is planning to spend more than $5 billion over the next decade on new aircraft – or $500 million a year. This government says it can transform the whole economy for $48 million a year – less than 10 percent of what one company is planning to spend.

“The package will be totally ineffective. The government is on a strategy to nowhere,” he said.

“The government plans to spend $1.3 million on business development – less than one hour’s welfare spend,” Mr Prebble said.

“For regional development, it has allocated $700,000 – just 30 minutes welfare spending.

“Agriculture and biosecurity gets $3.2 million – two hours welfare spending.

“There’s $18.4 million more for defence – just 12 hours welfare spending.

“The extra $1 million for education, to help small schools, is about 40 minutes welfare spending.

“The rural sector gets another $2.27 million, or 90 minutes welfare spending.

“Health will receive $211 million extra, or six days welfare spending.

“The extra $200 million taken through retrospective GST is enough to finance five-and-a-half days welfare spending.

“When you add up all the extra government expenditure, it amounts to just 30 days welfare spending,” Mr Prebble said.

“The Budget doesn’t face the real problems. The goal should be to boost economic growth and close the widening gap between New Zealand and Australia.

“In 1995, our economy grew by 6 percent. When the coalition came to power it was 4 percent. Now, growth is just 1.6 percent or half the OECD average.

“There’s nothing in the Budget to boost growth. While this government raises tax, the Australians are doing the opposite and cutting the company tax to 30 percent – 3 percent lower than New Zealand.

“Getting our company tax rate below Australia’s is number one priority. Getting overall taxes below Australia’s is next.

“New Zealand can only be wealthier if we have more people working, or we improve productivity. Although official unemployment is now 5 percent, we all know the real figure is more than 10 percent. We have more than 400,000 adults on benefits – most of them able-bodied.

“It’s not sustainable to have one adult in three on state assistance. We need a Budget which has real welfare reform as a central policy, to get more people into productive work.

ENDS


© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On Vulnerable Kids, RNZ Funding, And Poppy

The decision to remove the word ‘vulnerable’ from the Ministry for Vulnerable Children could well mark a whole shift in approach to the care of children in need.

And I’m hedging with the ‘could well’ only because the Ardern government hasn’t yet spelled out whether the name change it has announced will also involve a rejection of the controversial use of Big Data to try and predict those children deemed to be at highest risk of inter-generational reliance on welfare support. More>>

 

Principals' Federation: End Of National Standards

Today the Minister of Education announced that the Government has stopped the controversial National Standards system of assessment and declared them an arbitrary measure which did not raise children's achievement as the previous Government intended. More>>

ALSO:

Public Good: People’s Report On Public Broadcasting And Media Presented

The People’s Commission on Public Broadcasting and Media, was crowdfunded and was informed by an extensive consultation, seeking the views of both those working in Media as well as gathering input both online and in person from ordinary Citizens. More>>

ALSO:

RBNZ To RNZB: PM's Press Conference

Prime Minister Jacinda Adern was joined by Minister of Finance Grant Robertson and Minister for Children Tracey Martin to announce the appointment of Adrian Orr as the new Governor of the Reserve Bank and the name change of the Ministry for Vulnerable Children to ‘Oranga Tamariki - Ministry for Children’. More>>

ALSO:

'Taming Globalised Capital': Why Is Labour Supporting Investment Rules In WTO?

‘Today, we learned the new government has added New Zealand’s name to a proposal designed to lead to foreign investment rules in the WTO at this week’s ministerial meeting in Argentina,’ said Auckland University Professor Jane Kelsey. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Politics Of Scaring Voters Back Into Line

Fear has always been a useful mobilising tool in politics… yet in 2017, bogeymen of all shapes and sizes seem to have fallen on hard times. For years, the National party had painted itself as being the only reliable defensive bastion against the terrifying prospect of a centre-left government… More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Drinking Water As A Failure Of Political Leadership

It is almost possible to feel sorry for the Health Ministry in their terrible, no good, very bad week... More>>

ALSO:

 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

Featured InfoPages