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


Poll shows NZ supports levy for Christchurch - Greens

Poll shows NZ supports levy for Christchurch

A new poll shows strong support for a temporary levy to pay for Christchurch earthquake recovery, the Green Party announced today.

A nationwide phone survey has revealed resounding support for a levy on income greater than $48,000 and a preference for the temporary levy ahead of deep spending cuts and/or more borrowing.

"New Zealanders clearly want to do the right thing and we know a temporary levy is smart economics, so the Government's refusal to consider it looks more and more foolish," said Green Party Co-leader Russel Norman.

"John Key has shown in the past he's willing to listen New Zealand, hopefully this poll, on top of the advice of several economic commentators, will shift his thinking."

The poll conducted by UMR Research showed total support for the temporary levy proposal at 57%. New Zealanders also preferred a levy (40%) to big Government cuts (29%) and to more borrowing (22%).

"New Zealanders have a great deal of compassion for Canterbury. They've been incredibly generous in giving to charities and they understand that we have an enormous bill to pay through central Government. They're prepared to shoulder a temporary tax even at a time when household budgets are tight," Dr Norman said.

"They also understand the economics and support a fiscally responsible approach. Kiwis get that more debt is very bad for the country and deep spending cuts will be catastrophic."

The Green Party estimates that a levy of 1.5% applied to income between $48,001 and $70000 and 3.0% on income above $70,000, while leaving the corporate tax rate unchanged at 30%, would raise $1.026 billion per annum. People earning $50,000 a year would pay an additional 58 cents per week. People earning $70,000 per year would pay an additional $6.33 per week. People on $100,000 would pay an additional $23.59 per week

The Government has put the costs of rebuilding in Christchurch at approximately $5 billion, but has ruled out a temporary levy in favour of deep spending cuts and more borrowing.

"Borrowing carries a big risk of a credit rating downgrade, which would add significant deadweight costs right across the economy," Dr Norman noted.

"The other part of the Government's approach is to cut public sector spending at a time of weak economic activity, which carries the risk of sending the economy back into recession.

"A temporary levy avoids these risks, as it spreads the cost of rebuilding Christchurch fairly throughout the economy," said Dr Norman.

Increased Government borrowing would also cost taxpayers over $250 million a year in additional interest costs, according to Green Party estimates.

The new poll, conducted March 24-27, surveyed a nationally representative sample of 750 New Zealanders over the age of 18.

© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines



Relevant Consents Gained: Government Unveils RMA Reform Package

The government has formally hauled down the flag on its attempts to alter the balance of environmental and economic priorities in the Resource Management Act, unveiling a 180-page Resource Legislation Amendment Bill containing reforms that have been largely endorsed by most political parties. More>>


Closing Schools And Such: Interim Redcliffs Decision Announced

“While the school’s board has argued that circumstances that could give rise to potential disruption are extremely unlikely, advice from technical experts has shown these concerns cannot be ruled out." More>>


Jane Kelsey: High Court Can’t Make Groser Provide TPPA Information Faster

‘This week we went back to court to challenge Trade Minister Groser’s stalling tactics over the release of information on the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement negotiations, following a High Court order that he reconsider the Official Information Act request I made last January’, said University of Auckland law professor Jane Kelsey, first applicant in the case. More>>

Werewolf 58: No Climate For Change

The last time the global community tried to take collective action on climate change the world’s leaders finally came to agree that every not-too-onerous effort should be made to hold global warming to 2°C above the pre-industrial average. At Paris, all 150 participant countries nations will have put forward their pledges... On the information available, New Zealand's is the second weakest contribution of any nation in the developed world. More>>


Lambton Quay Shutdown: Object Was Made To Look Like Bomb

Police cordoned off part of Lambton Quay Wednesday afternoon, saying that a suspicious package had been found. Buildings were evacuated and buses were detoured. The army’s explosive ordnance disposal unit was brought to the Quay. More>>


Public Sector Still Shrinking: Record Low Number Of 'Backroom Bureaucrats'

Ongoing restraint in the public sector and a focus on better frontline services has seen a further reduction in the number of core Government employees, State Services Minister Paula Bennett says. More>>


Disobeying The Law: Police Censorship Of Crime Research “An Outrage”

The Green Party is calling on Police Minister Michael Woodhouse to ensure Police scrap controversial contracts that place onerous restrictions on academic researchers’ access to Police data, the Green Party says. More>>


Get More From Scoop



Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news