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Ogilvy: We’re killing rural NZ

Ogilvy: We’re killing rural NZ

The Government’s employment ‘dead zone’ towns are the logical conclusion of years of political leadership bereft of ideas, United Future’s Bernie Ogilvy said today.

“That’s what happens when you put a country’s direction on auto-pilot, and that is what successive governments have done to rural and provincial New Zealand,” he said, commenting on reports of Government black-listing of entire regions as no-go zones for job-seekers.

“It has been death by a thousand cuts - post offices, banks, all the basic services, and today it is schools being closed,” Mr Ogilvy, United Future’s education spokesman, said

“So is it any wonder that we now find the Government labelling these part of New Zealand as employment ‘dead zones’?

“This Government is the latest benign neglecter of non-metropolitan New Zealand,” he said.

“And there is no Grand Plan about this. What dogs this country is a total lack of forward planning of any depth.

“We do not do enough thinking about the impact of decisions; the consequences 10, 20, 50 or 100 years out. And that is a large part of what is happening to rural and provincial New Zealand today,” he said.

“We live in an age of increasing tele-commuting; where you can work from Westport for a London firm, or a Wellington or Auckland one… and such developments are increasing, but has that - and other issues - ever been factored in for what passes for national planning in this country?” Mr Ogilvy asked.

“We presume too much based on too little evidence and not a lot of thought - and that is now way to run a country.”


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