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Mallard can’t be trusted with race policy review

Mallard can’t be trusted with race policy review

As the race relations review enters its second phase, the Minister responsible is hiding details of Maori and Pacific funding in the early childhood sector, says National’s Education spokesman, Bill English.

Trevor Mallard has refused to answer parliamentary questions about the allocation of the Early Childhood Discretionary Grant Scheme.

Mr English says this scheme has been used to fund Maori and Pacific early child education centres.

“I have asked whether in each case there is, in fact, a licensed childcare centre now in existence. One marae-based early childhood centre funded by the Maori funding pool closed within months of opening – leaving a good facility, but no childcare.

The Minister says the work that would be required to answer my questions would not be an efficient use of parliamentary resources.

“It’s unbelievable that the Ministry of Education can’t tell whether the funding has been used to set up childcare centres. Mr Mallard has given the same answer to 65 other questions concerning contestable funding pools in the early childhood sector.

“When the Minister is so reluctant to make this information public you have to wonder what he’s trying to hide – another failed scheme or an incompetent Ministry?

“Mr Mallard’s refusal to answer these questions is another symptom of the Government’s arrogant attitude to parliamentary accountability. Official Information Act requests are frequently overdue and parliamentary questions are not answered properly.

“Mr Mallard cannot be trusted to answer questions on his race-based policy review,” Mr English said.

Answers to written questions:

Question: What is the list of all organisations who received a grant from

the Early Childhood Discretionary Grant Scheme Maori Funding Pool in the

1999/2000, 2000/200, 2002/2003, 2003/2004, 2004/2005 years?

Portfolio: Education

Minister: Hon Trevor Mallard

Date Lodged:27/10/2004

Answer Text: I refer the Member to my answer to Question No. 15798 (2004)

Attachment: None

Date Received:04/11/2004

Question: What is the list of all applications made to the Early Childhood

Discretionary Grants Scheme General Funding Pool in the 1999/2000,

2000/2001, 2002/2003, 2003/2004, 2004/2005 years, listed by type of

application (for Planning or Capital Grants)?

Portfolio: Education

Minister: Hon Trevor Mallard

Date Lodged:27/10/2004

Answer Text: The information that the member requests is not readily

available. I do not consider that committing the resources required to

answer this question would be an efficient use of departmental resources.

This answer also replies to Questions for Written Answer 15799-15806,

15809, 15811, 15813, 15815, 15822, 15824-5, 15828, 15830, 15833-15848,

15853-15876, 15878-15896, 15898-15899.

Attachment: None

Date Received:04/11/2004

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