Parliament

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

 

Time Act came clean on tax policy - Labour

Labour
2000 web site
"Act must be made to answer the hard questions about their tax policy," Labour finance spokesperson Michael Cullen said today.

"Act says it will cost $3.2 billion. This is almost certainly a convenient under-estimate. Labour's estimate, based on the Treasury model, would put the figure at over $4 billion.

"But even accepting Act's dodgy estimate, the question is unanswered. Where is the money going to come from? Did Act find something in the Pre-Election Economic and Fiscal Update not visible to anyone else?

"Rodney Hide is reported in the Sunday Star Times as saying they can fund their tax cut programme without cutting spending. What the Prefu actually shows is that even a spending freeze of four years would be insufficient to cover the costs.

"Act is careful to present this as a painless option but in fact it would impose great hardship on the most vulnerable New Zealanders.

"The level of superannuation for a married couple would fall to less than 55 percent of the average net wage. Progress toward pay parity for primary teachers would stop. All public sector pay rates - except, no doubt, those at the very top - would be frozen for years, or cut.

"And as underlying health cuts increased costs, there would have to be savage cuts in public health services. In each of these areas, a freeze is a cut and the losers in every case are ordinary New Zealanders.

"There would be no additional funding for roading, for research and development, or for the expansion of tertiary education. That in turn would mean massive fee rises which would make the 1990s look like a picnic.

"No wonder Act does not want to talk about its core policies. No wonder, too, that Mr Prebble was so nervous and unconvincing on television last night," Dr Cullen said.

"Even Infometrics, ideologically inclined toward Act, argues that large spending cuts will be needed on top of the freeze. It calculates that $850 million would have to be cut next year and $400 million the year after, resulting in a $1.2 billion or 3 percent cut in the spending baseline for 2001-2002.

"Act has not even made it clear yet whether they are still advocating a flat tax or whether they would retain the lower 15c rate. This has huge implications for low income earners. If they abandon the 15c rate, everyone earning below $39,460 a year will pay higher taxes to fund tax cuts for the wealthy.

"Act is trying to flannel their way though the election campaign by hiding their real agenda behind a smokescreen of populism. Mr Prebble cannot in reality pretend he is Pauline Hanson without the dress sense.

"Tax cuts for the rich are Act's top priority. Richard Prebble says it will be on the table at every cabinet meeting he attends and Rodney Hide has said he will be demanding the revenue portfolio in a National-Act coalition government.

"The public is entitled to some straight answers on what Act's tax policies will mean, not only for Act's wealthy financial backers but also for the ordinary New Zealander," Dr Cullen said.


© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On The West’s Role In Arming Khashoggi’s Killers

The cliché about one death being a tragedy and a million deaths only a statistic has been demonstrated in spades by the murder of the Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

Of all the crimes committed over the past decade by the Saudi regime, it has been this revenge killing ordered by the Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman that has finally brought universal condemnation. More>>

ALSO:

.

 
 

MP Reportedly In Mental Health Care: Speaker Of The House Seeks Advice

After unleashing a volley of damaging allegations against his former leader, National's Simon Bridges, and his party, Jami-Lee Ross was reportedly taken into mental health care over the weekend. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On Jami-Lee Ross (And The New Hobbit Law)

Clearly, Jami-Lee Ross is not waging a normal form of political warfare, with agreed rules of combat and rational cost/benefit calculations.

This is politics-as-terrorism where everything is being sacrificed by the man in the bomb vest in order to remove Simon Bridges as the leader of the National Party. More>>

ALSO:

Film Industry Working Group:

Three Killed: DOC Supporting Family, Colleagues After Helicopter Crash

The Department of Conservation (DOC) is rallying around family and colleagues of the staff who died in a helicopter crash this morning in Wanaka... The helicopter, with two DOC staff on board, was on its way to undertake tahr control in the Haast area when it crashed. More>>

ALSO:

Political Donations: Greens Call For Tighter Anonymity Rules And Public Funding

“It is clear that those vested interests have a tangible influence on the decision making of political parties. This is a threat to democracy and should change.” More>>

ALSO:

Education Amendment Bill Passes: Urgency Sought For Partnership School Treaty Claim

The claim takes issue with the acts and omissions of the Crown in respect of the closure of Partnership Schools | Kura Hourua. More>>

ALSO:

Salvation Army Paper: Call For Public Housing Investment

To meet these future demands the report suggests the government needs to look beyond the private rental market and begin to invest heavily into home-ownership programmes and more public and social housing. More>>

ALSO:

Cull: Himalayan Tahr Control Operation Proceeding

“The target of controlling 10,000 Himalayan tahr over the next eight months remains. The revised plan provides for a staged control operation with increased reporting to the Tahr Liaison Group...” More>>

ALSO:

Health: Petitions To Fund Breast Cancer Drugs

Women marching to Parliament today, to present two petitions calling for Government funding of vital medicines, have 100% support from a coalition representing than 30 breast cancer organisations. More>>

ALSO:

 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

InfoPages News Channels