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Did Judith Collins Inspire Next Week’s Tax Cuts?

Did Judith Collins Inspire Next Week’s Tax Cuts?


Finance Minister Bill English is denying his promised tax cuts have been provoked by the Judith Collins “problem”.

Speaking on Prime TV’s “Prime Time with Sean Plunket”, Mr English denied Labour Finance spokesman, David Parker’s claim that the involvement of Judith Collins in the Whaleoil affair was behind the cuts.

Mr English said the cuts, which would be announced on Monday, could be afforded.

“We can control our spending to roughly the revenue we've got now,” he said.

“We’ve made allowances for tax cuts, that’s built into all the forecasts.

“Back in the budget which was back in May, we signalled that with growing surpluses there could be room for moderate tax cuts.”

But Mr English’s proposal for tax cuts was criticised by two other panel member son the programme.

Ernst and Young tax partner, Jo Doolan, said she didn’t think they were necessary.

And Morgan Foundation economist, Geoff Simmons, said that as well as the slowdown in China and Europe, health and superannuation spending was projected to rise to 20 cents out of every dollar that we earned in the future.

“Until we get a handle, until we get on top of the growth and health and superannuation spending we can't realistically talk about any sort of election bribes,” he said.

But Ms Doolan was also critical of Labour’s plans to raise taxes on incomes above $150,000.

“Is that just an envy tax, “she asked.

But Mr Parker denied that: “No it's not.

“We want to encourage more investment in research and development.

“It costs money, it costs 300 million dollars per annum, that’s actually what we effectively gather from the increase in tax rates.”

And Geoff Simmons also questioned the tax increase.

“Half of New Zealand's richest people don’t pay the top rate of income tax, “he said.

“So I think putting up the top rate of income tax is a bit of a red herring. The big issue here is that we don’t tax capital.”

But Mr English, and Ms Doolan, argued that any capital gains tax would be too complex.

“We're seeing with the capital gains tax debate, whatever its theoretical appeal, when you get down to the practicalities you end up with a very complex tax, with all sorts of holes in it, said Mr English


DID JOHN KEY TAKE TOO LONG TO PERSUADE JUDITH COLLINS TO GO

Deputy Prime Minister Bill English is not willing to answer questions about whether Judith Collins should have resigned earlier than she did.

Speaking on Prime TV’s “Prime Time with Sean Plunket” and asked whether she should have gone earlier he said:

“As (Prime Minister, john Key) says you don’t know when emails are coming or going.

“He just judges the things on the facts and he's made his judgements along the way."

Asked if her departure had been a good thing for the campaign, Mr English said: “We're just sticking to communicating with the public about our plans for the future.

Sean Plunket: “Which she was getting in the way of, right?”

Mr English: “Look some of its come or gone, she and Prime Minister came to some judgements about it.

“I think the public have moved on pretty quickly to wanting to hear about the issues particularly from the major parties.”

But Labour’s deputy leader, David parker said the allegations about Ms Collins undermining the Serious Fraud Office, CEO, Adam Feeley, had disturbed people.

“And they’ve said it's a pox on both your houses,” he said.

“ I think's one of the problems, and it's also starved us of oxygen in respect of the big issues that people should be voting on, is what you need to do to improve the economy and the lives of New Zealanders.

“So I'm glad we're getting back on track and talking about the substantive issues.”

ends

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