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New Zealanders asked to consider cost of tax cuts

PSA asks New Zealanders to consider cost of tax cuts

Full-sized pdf: listener_advert.pdf

September 22, 2008
For Immediate Use

PSA asks New Zealanders to consider cost of tax cuts

The Public Service Association is highlighting the cost of tax cuts in a series of advertisments.

The advert appears in this week’s New Zealand Listener. It will also be appearing on the NZ Herald, Stuff and Scoop websites.

The adverts show that cutting taxes for every New Zealander, by even a few cents a year, puts public service jobs at risk.

“New Zealanders don’t want public services cut or privatised,” says PSA National Secretary, Brenda Pilott. “I think they’ll be surprised at the high cost of even a tiny tax cut.”

“Ten cents a year less in tax for every New Zealander represents the jobs of seven public sector workers providing services we all use and rely on,” says Brenda Pilott.

She notes that tax cuts of $20 to $50 a week are being discussed, perhaps funded by foreign borrowing despite the global crisis in the financial sector.

“If cutting seven jobs returns 10 cents a year to each New Zealander, what kind of cuts will be needed to pay for tax cuts of $50 a week?” Brenda Pilott asked.

“The sooner New Zealand gets a true debate about the cost of tax cuts, the better.”

“Because it’s hard to see how we can afford large tax cuts without jobs being lost in every part of the country.”

Brenda Pilott says New Zealanders are constantly being fed a myth about the size of the public service. The facts are that our public service is smaller than in 1990, smaller than Australia’s and smaller than the average for the 29 countries in the OECD. It’s also a fact that the public sector workforce has grown at a lower rate than private sector employment this century.

The reality is we have an efficient public service providing services that New Zealanders value. This means it’s not possible to find billions of dollars for tax cuts by cutting the public service.

“Even if we sacked every public servant in the country that would not provide the $5 billion needed to pay for tax cuts in the range of $50 a week,” says Brenda Pilott.

“This is why the PSA says strong public services are worth voting for and that we need a genuine debate about what’s at stake on November 8,” says Brenda Pilott.

A copy of the PSA advert is distributed with this media release.

The advert lists seven public sector jobs. One $50,000 job, can could be funded by every New Zealander, all 4.2 million, contributing 1.2 cents a year. To fund all seven jobs every New Zealander would pay 10 cents a year. The salaries used in the advert are actual salaries earned by PSA members.


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