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Site Updates - beehive.govt.nz - 20 March 2013

Site Updates - beehive.govt.nz

Vulnerable children better protected by Social Workers in Hospitals initiative

Posted: 18 Mar 2013 07:15 PM PDT

Paula Bennett | Social Development

The National Government’s decision to introduce Social Workers in Hospitals is making a difference by better protecting children says Social Development Minister Paula Bennett. When hospitals admit children or young people they’re concerned about, or have previously been involved with Child, Youth and Family, a social worker engages with the family and hospital staff. ...

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Investments add up to travel time savings

Posted: 18 Mar 2013 06:36 PM PDT

Gerry Brownlee | Transport

Transport Minister Gerry Brownlee is calling on the Green Party to embrace the Government’s Roads of National Significance programme following the most recent survey of their impact on congestion and the ensuing benefits to the environment. “It’s early days, but already New Zealanders are getting great value for money from the Government’s investment in the seven Roads of National Significance,” Mr Brownlee says. ...

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McCully congratulates new Chinese counterpart

Posted: 18 Mar 2013 05:52 PM PDT

Murray McCully | Foreign Affairs

Foreign Affairs Minister Murray McCully today congratulated his Chinese counterpart, Wang Yi, following his appointment to the 12th National People’s Congress in Beijing. “New Zealand and China have an expanding bilateral relationship with strong political, economic and cultural connections,” Mr McCully says. “Both New Zealand and China are interested in cooperating on issues that affect the Asia-Pacific region. ...

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Minister releases Novopay Technical Review

Posted: 18 Mar 2013 05:48 PM PDT

Steven Joyce | Education

Minister Responsible for Novopay Steven Joyce today released the Technical Review into the school payroll system. Mr Joyce says the aim of the Technical Review led by Murray Jack of Deloitte was to assess the stability of the Novopay system, look closely at the data contained in it, and make recommendations. “I have repeatedly said that issues with Novopay are complex and there is no quick fix. The findings of the Technical Review confirm that,” Mr Joyce says. The Review’s key conclusions are that: ...

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Minister gives update on Novopay Remediation Plan

Posted: 18 Mar 2013 05:47 PM PDT

Steven Joyce | Education

Minister Responsible for Novopay Steven Joyce today provided an update on progress with the Government’s Remediation Plan to address issues with the school payroll system. Mr Joyce announced that a new dedicated Education Sector Payroll Services business unit is being established in the Education Ministry to co-ordinate the Remediation Plan. The new unit will be headed by former Chief Executive of Gareth Morgan Investments Group and former IRD Deputy Commissioner and KiwiSaver Programme Director, Cathy Magiannis. ...

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Minister announces school support package

Posted: 18 Mar 2013 05:44 PM PDT

Steven Joyce | Education

Minister Responsible for Novopay Steven Joyce today announced a $6 million support package for schools designed to go some way to meeting the costs of additional work caused by the Novopay system. “Schools are experiencing increased administration workloads to manage the Novopay issues and they have requested financial relief. This $6 million support package recognises the impact that Novopay has created for schools and will assist in addressing some of these issues,” Mr Joyce says. ...

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Online government services prove popular

Posted: 18 Mar 2013 04:15 PM PDT

Chris Tremain | Internal Affairs

The number of online transactions with government continues to grow, with figures up for the second time since measurements began says Internal Affairs Minister Chris Tremain. Figures released today show 38.6 per cent of New Zealanders used secure online government services during the October to December quarter, up from 32.4 per cent for the first quarter. When measurements started in June the figure was at 29.9 per cent. ...

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IMF concludes New Zealand has the right balance

Posted: 18 Mar 2013 12:49 PM PDT

Bill English | Finance

Finance Minister Bill English has welcomed the International Monetary Fund’s conclusion that the Government’s deficit reduction programme strikes the right balance between supporting growth and limiting public debt. In its Preliminary Concluding Statement (embargoed until midnight tonight NZ time), the IMF says New Zealand’s macro-economic policy stance is appropriate and that the monetary policy should continue to be the first line of defence against adverse shocks. ...

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Full steam ahead for $600 million plus rebuild of Christchurch Hospitals

Posted: 17 Mar 2013 09:34 PM PDT

Tony Ryall | Health

The first site work on Christchurch’s six hundred million dollar plus hospitals redevelopment project will start in a couple of months says Health Minister Tony Ryall. “Cabinet has agreed to set aside around $500 million from the Future Investment Fund for the largest and most complex building project in the history of New Zealand’s public health service,” Mr Ryall says. “The total cost of the project is expected to be more than $600 million including a contribution from Canterbury DHB. ...

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McCully welcomes Afghan Foreign Minister

Posted: 17 Mar 2013 09:30 PM PDT

Murray McCully | Foreign Affairs

Foreign Affairs Minister Murray McCully held talks with his Afghan counterpart, Dr Zalmai Rassoul, in Wellington today. “A new chapter in our countries’ relationship is about to begin, with New Zealand withdrawing its Provincial Reconstruction Team (PRT) from Bamyan province in April, in line with the transition process,” Mr McCully says. New Zealand has led the PRT in Bamyan since 2003 and has contributed to international counter-terrorism efforts and improved security, development and governance in the province. ...

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PM welcomes visit of Thailand PM

Posted: 17 Mar 2013 09:23 PM PDT

John Key | Prime Minister

Prime Minister John Key will host Thailand’s Prime Minister, Yingluck Shinawatra when she visits New Zealand later this week. This is the first visit to New Zealand by Ms Shinawatra since becoming Prime Minister in 2011. Mr Key says New Zealand’s relationship with Thailand is a close and warm one, and this visit underscores those close ties and looks towards new areas of cooperation. “Our two countries have common views on many issues and I look forward to having constructive discussions with Prime Minister Yingluck.” ...

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Gordon Campbell:
On Tomorrow’s Speeches By John Key And
Andrew Little

The Key government has already kicked off the political year on a stridently ideological note, with Environment Minister Nick Smith choosing to lay all manner of sins at the door of the Resource Management Act.

Tomorrow, the government will wheeling out its best salesman – Prime Minister John Key – to sell its plans for state housing, which happens to be another of the government’s most contentious, most ideologically-driven policy packages. Presumably, Key will be trying not to double down on the rhetoric, and thereby leave room for Labour leader Andrew Little to sound like the centrist voice of reason.

Key will have his work cut out, though. More>>

 

Transport: Auckland Looks To Light Rail

The Board of Auckland Transport has called for an investigation into a light rail network, which could relieve traffic congestion on some of the region’s busiest roads. This stems from work in 2012 (the City Centre Future Access study) which responded to a government request to develop a robust and achievable solution for access to the CBD. More>>

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RMA: Smith's Claims Don't Match Evidence - Greens

The Motu group’s research into the impacts of planning rules looked at the costs related to housing development but not the benefits of environmental protections and does not recommend significant changes to the RMA to reduce the cost of new house builds. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Similarities Between John Key And David Cameron

For years now, David Cameron has been the closest available thing to a mentor/analogue to our Prime Minister, such that Key watchers could be interested in an analysis of Cameron that appeared in the British press over the Christmas break. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On Ian Fletcher Resignation & GCSB’s New Role

It may well be that after being shoulder-tapped in Queensland for the GCSB job, three years of living in Wellington has been enough for Fletcher and his family, given that the pending review of the GCSB would have required an even longer commitment from him. Three years of Wellington’s weather is enough for anyone... More>>

ALSO:

Ian Apperley: $10m Or $100m For New Wellington Council IT System?

I feel a Tui Billboard coming on. I commented the other day that it looked like the Council’s Ninth big project was a potential $100 million plus... The Mayor has responded: “I am reassured by the Chief Executive and by Anthony Wilson that the proposed budget is in the region of $10 million.” More>>

ALSO:

Southern Ocean:
Navy Intercepts Illegal Fishing Vessels

Foreign Minister Murray McCully today put illegal fishing vessels operating in the Southern Ocean on notice and vowed to take action against their owners. “As part of a multi-agency operation, the HMNZS WELLINGTON has intercepted two vessels claiming to be flagged to Equatorial Guinea, fishing illegally in the Southern Ocean.” Mr McCully says. More>>

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