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Private Members' Bills Expose Wacky Economic Policies

ACT Leader John Banks
August 16 2012

Private Members' Bills Expose Wacky Economic Policies

ACT Leader John Banks today welcomed the Green’s and NZ First’s Members’ Bills drawn today as a great opportunity to show New Zealanders how wacky these parties’ economic policies really are.

“Green MP Catherine Delahunty’s Income Tax (Universalisation of In-work Tax Credit) Amendment Bill is a good example of why the Greens should be out of work come the 2014 election,” Mr Banks said.

“The in-work tax credit provides additional financial assistance to families or sole parents who work approximately 30 hours per week.

“The purpose of the credit is to actively support individuals and families to move off a benefit and into paid work. It ensures that people who do paid work are better off as a result.

“The Greens Bill would remove the requirement for individuals to actually ‘be in work’ to receive the in-work tax credit.

“Instead, it would provide the credit to beneficiaries and students receiving an allowance, despite the fact they are not working.

“This makes no economic sense. It punishes those who work, by making them pay more to fund those who don’t, and it erodes the incentive for those on a benefit to move away from welfare and into work. It’s just plain wacky.

“Meanwhile, Winston Peters’ Reserve Bank of New Zealand (Amending Primary Function of Bank) Amendment Bill would broaden the economic factors the Reserve Bank must consider when adjusting the official cash rate.

“As well as price stability, the Reserve Bank would also have to consider growth, the value of the dollar, export growth and employment.

“Forcing the Reserve Bank to consider so many factors, would most likely see inflation rise well about the levels to which we have become accustomed.

“High inflation is the worst form of taxation. It is taxation by stealth and hurts the poor the most as they are forced to spend more of their income on basic living costs.

“If we want to lower the dollar and lower interest rates we would be far better off if we reduced excessive government spending, and excessive house prices. ACT’s Spending Limit and RMA reform would be a good start.

“It is Members’ Bills like these that expose parties' true colours. We look forward to more wacky Members’ Bills from the Opposition being pulled from the ballot in the future,” Mr Banks said.

ENDS

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