Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search

 


‘Rural Think Tank’ taking provincial promise to the election

PRESS RELEASE

 25 February 2014

Focus New Zealand’s ‘Rural Think Tank’ taking provincial promise to the election

The Focus New Zealand party are sending a clear signal to the government that ‘Rural NZ cannot be ignored’ this year with a series of Rural Think Tanks at Field Day events throughout the country.

Launching this Thursday at the Northland Districts Field Days, Focus NZ will be hosting a ‘Rural Think Tank’ where they invite the public to brainstorm and challenge scenarios and policy ideas with a view to taking those ideas to Parliament in the 2014 election.

“It’s a little different to the think tanks in Wellington – there are no chairs, tables, paid expert opinions, or long lunches – but there will be common sense, diversity, provoking questions and a clear rural community message” says Focus NZ Party President Ken Rintoul.

“We will take that common sense message with us to the election later this year and call out some of the legislation and short term government perspectives that are making it harder for productive New Zealand to actually produce, employ people, be profitable and support our local communities.”

“For too long rural and productive New Zealand have been at the whim of our larger and expanding cities – Auckland’s growth demands have been at the expense of our regions, our towns and our productive sector is shrinking -  this does not bode well for New Zealand as a whole,” says Rintoul.

Rural NZ accounts for a significant share of export income and the Regional Economic Activity Report released last year quantifies rural GDP at $73.6 billion or approximately 40% (excluding the big cities Auckland 66.3b, Wellington 26.9b, Canterbury 23.2b).

Focus NZ was formed over 18 months ago and became a registered political party in December after gaining membership across NZ from mostly rural, manufacturing and export industries.

“We know we can adopt a better vision for Provincial New Zealand - one that understands its relationship to the overall economy, wealth and health of New Zealand - one which aims to support and foster provincial development and strengths, not dilute them.”

“One of the ideas we are developing is a Provincial Policy.  Focus NZ want to remove barriers to viable, profitable and self-sustaining economic communities using the Provinces as the building platform. We’ve drafted a Provincial Policy Paper around the concept and we are seeking our communities’ feedback on that this weekend. It considers tax, legislation, exchange rates, rural economies, job creation, training, RMA, environmental management, infrastructure, local councils, road user charges, regional investment funds etc.”  

“We are careful not to be the pot calling the kettle black and set up a Rural Ministry as that marginalises the cities, but the idea of our Provincial Policy says all Provinces, whether they be rural or civic have a place in New Zealand’s success. The New Zealand economy is the sum of its individual geographic parts, but we must also understand here lies the solutions too, let’s start working together and sharing the growth and solutions. Housing shortages is a classic example pushing up the cost of living for hard working families in Auckland, when we have plenty of empty sections but a serious job shortage in Northland; or where power shortages are prohibitive to manufacturing growth in the city and yet we sit on an underutilised natural geothermal power supply at Ngawha.”

“Focus New Zealand is about bringing Common Sense Solutions to the table for all New Zealanders, connecting the dots and not been too hung up on being left, right or green on the political spectrum.   We know for certain that the Provinces are key to those ideas and the future success of New Zealand, and we will take that promise to the election this year.” 

The Focus New Zealand ‘Rural Think Tank’ will be at site 342 at the Northland Districts Field Days, 27 February – 1st March

END

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On The Tokenism Of New Zealand's Role Against Islamic State

To date, the Opposition has continued to occupy itself with the marginalia of the issue. E.g. whether Key did or didn’t know whether Barack Obama would be present at the US briefing last week on IS, or whether New Zealand’s military involvement is or isn’t already a fait accompli.

It might be better to tackle the issue, head on. Our contribution against IS will be to send SAS forces to train the Iraqis? That’s like offering trainers to General Custer just as the 7th cavalry reached the Little Big Horn.
More>>

 

Parliament Today:

Scoop Business: Shell And Todd Caught Drilling Without Approval

Multi-national oil company Shell’s New Zealand arm and local energy giant Todd Energy have breached the new law governing New Zealand’s Exclusive Economic Zone, the Environmental Protection Authority says in an Oct. 10 document released by the Green Party. More>>

ALSO:

Labour: Tea Breaks 'Gone By Lunch Time'

“How cynical that on the eve of Labour weekend, the National government is pushing through legislation that takes away the statutory right to tea and meal breaks along with collective bargaining protections, and makes vulnerable workers jobs even less secure." More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Pharmac, Gough Whitlam And Sleater-Kinney

We’re not at the outset of these negotiations. The outset was six years ago, and negotiators were hoping to have some sort of ‘framework’ deal finished in time for the APEC meeting in a few weeks’ time. These ‘extreme’ positions are what we’ve reached near the intended end of the negotiations… More>>

ALSO:

PM Of Many Hats: Questions, No Answers On Whale Oil

Dr RUSSEL NORMAN (Co-Leader – Green) to the Prime Minister: How many times since November 2008 has he spoken with blogger Cameron Slater on the phone and how many times, if any, has he texted him?
Rt Hon JOHN KEY (Prime Minister): None in my capacity as Prime Minister. More>>

ALSO:

Aussie Investigation Dropped: Call On Minister McCully To Pursue The Case Of Balibo Five

West Papua Action is deeply concerned at the lack of any clear outcome from the Australian Federal Police inquiry into the 1975 deaths of the ‘Balibo Five’ including NZ journalist Gary Cunningham. More>>

ALSO:

'Feed The Kids' Bill: Metiria Turei To Lead Fight On Feeding Hungry Children

Green Party Co-leader Metiria Turei is urging all political parties to support the Feed the Kids Bill which she inherited today from Mana leader Hone Harawira. More>>

ALSO:

Parliament Today: State Opening Of Parliament

The House sat at 10.30am on Tuesday before MPs were summoned to hear the Speech from the Throne in the Legislative Council Chamber. More>>

ALSO:

Tertiary Education: Students Doing It Tough As Fees Rise Again

The Government is making it increasingly difficult for Kiwis to gain tertiary education as fees continue to rise and access to student support becomes even more restricted, Labour’s Tertiary Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. More>>

ALSO:

Housing, Iraq: PM Press Conference – 20 October 2014

Prime Minister John Key met with press today to discuss:
• Housing prices and redevelopment in Auckland
• Discussions with Tony Abbott on the governmental response to ISIS, and New Zealand’s election to the UN Security Council More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Politics
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news