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

 

First Government Budget hits all the right notes

First Government Budget hits all the right notes, more needed long term

Council of Trade Unions President Richard Wagstaff says the Government’s first budget shows it backs the right priorities, and could achieve even more by raising revenue and freeing fiscal constraints.

"I am very impressed by what the Government and Finance Minister have achieved today with pretty limited cash flow. In the long run, if they are to fully achieve the platform they were elected on, they must accept we need more tax.

"It’s simple maths. The last Government’s tax cuts for the wealthiest have cost us billions in revenue, and this Government urgently needs to refill the accounts. "The coalition Government clearly has their spending priorities right. Health, affordable housing and quality education are what working people want more of, not irresponsible tax handouts. Kiwis understand that - it’s why the majority of us say we want more taxes to support our public services.

"Without strong education and health systems staffed by well valued and highly skilled professionals, we can’t enjoy the stable society and high quality of life we should expect.

"People delivering valuable services like teachers and nurses have borne the brunt of the last 9 years of fiscal conservatism, and most people think they deserve a better deal. We know that 9 years of significant and hidden underfunding, amounting to 2.7 billion in health alone can’t be fixed in one Budget cycle. It’s encouraging though that the Government is starting to properly fund the cost of a growing and ageing population and fully funding new initiatives in health. This is the first time in many years that health spending has risen faster than cost and population pressures.

"Housing is a basic need and human right, but for too many New Zealand families, that’s been inaccessible - what should be family homes have been casinos for financial speculation. The start of the Kiwibuild scheme is a positive move, with significant funding for redeveloping vacant crown land, as is the promise of 1600 new state houses this year. However, with over 70,000 new houses needed right now and half of them in Auckland, an even further expanded housing package is needed.

"It’s commendable to restore the basic services we all rely on that have fallen into disrepair - this is in line with moving to a wellbeing budget framework. It shows this Government is in tune with Kiwi values.

"To realise this vision, the Government will need to increase overall revenue in a way that supports struggling working people and local businesses. We’ll back this Government to raise revenue and get on with fixing our country, and we know most New Zealanders will too."

ENDS


© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Pike River: Mine Drift Re-Entry Plan To Proceed

The Pike River Mine Drift will be re-entered, Minister Responsible for Pike River Re-entry Andrew Little announced today.

“I’ve decided the Te Kāhui Whakamana Rua Tekau Mā Iwa - Pike River Recovery Agency, recommended course of action to enter the drift, using the existing access tunnel, is by far the safest option,” said Andrew Little...

“The advice I have received indicates that it is likely to be around February before the re-entry proper gets underway, by breaching the 30m seal.” More>>

 

Appointments: New High Commissioner To Australia Announced

“Dame Annette King needs no introduction given her long running career as a parliamentarian where she has previously held a number senior Cabinet portfolios, including Justice, Police and Health. She also was Parliament’s longest serving female MP with 30 years’ service,” said Mr Peters. More>>

ALSO:

Rebuilding: Silvia Cartwright To Lead Inquiry Into EQC

“The inquiry will be the first of its kind under the Public Inquiries Act 2013 and will have all the powers of a Royal Commission, be independent of Government and make its report directly to the Governor-General. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Royal Commission Into Child Abuse

Obviously, it is good news that the coalition government has broadened the scope of its Royal Commission into the abuse of children, beyond its previous focus on children in state care. More>>

ALSO:

Cases Delayed: Court Staff Refuse To Handle Sentencing Papers

Dozens of court cases have reportedly been delayed, as court staff escalate industrial action at two Auckland courts by enforcing a ban on handling sentencing papers. More>>

ALSO:

Education: Primary Teachers Rolling Strikes

RNZ Report: More than 100,000 primary school students in Auckland will be home from school today as teachers and principals walk off the job for the second time this year. It's the start of a week of rolling one-day strikes around the country, after the collapse of contract negotiations last Thursday. More>>

ALSO:

"Process Was Sound": Inquiry Into Haumaha Appointment Released

The Inquiry’s purpose was to examine, identify, and report on the adequacy of the process that led to the appointment. It found the process was sound and no available relevant information was omitted. More>>

ALSO:

Govt Loses In Supreme Court: Call For Debate On Prisoners' Right To Vote

The court earlier this week upheld a High Court decision which found that a law restricting a prisoner's right to vote was inconsistent with the Bill of Rights. More>>

ALSO:

 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

InfoPages News Channels