Just get on with congestion charging

ACT Leader David Seymour welcomes the government’s about face on congestion charges, with one condition.

“Road tolls shouldn’t be used as a cash grab. Any revenue generated from the tolls should be offset by cuts in petrol tax and, if appropriate, rates,” said Mr Seymour.

“People from Epsom and around Auckland tell me congestion is noticeably worse this year than last.  We can’t keep adding cars year after year, New Zealand should be using the latest technology to fight congestion.

Kiwis working longer, so when will we adjust Super?

“It’s baffling that the Government ignores the need for any adjustment of superannuation when Kiwis are working longer than ever,” says ACT Leader David Seymour.

New Zealanders are ranked second in the OECD for their longevity in the workplace, according to PwC's Golden Age Index. The report says one in three New Zealanders will work past the age of 65.

Time to close ‘charitable purpose’ tax loophole

ACT Leader David Seymour used Question Time today to call on the Government to scrap the ‘charitable purpose’ tax loophole exploited by certain businesses at the expense of others.

“Taxpaying businesses are at a competitive disadvantage due to certain companies’ tax-free status," said Mr Seymour.  "This destroys the principle of a competitive marketplace.

Free Press - 14/06/2016

Insidious Bullying
Last night TV One revealed just how far the teachers’ unions will go in bullying partnership schools.  It is shameful.  We are all for raising the status of the teaching profession (a stated goal of the unions) but this kind of bullying behaviour is doing more damage to the profession than anyone else.

ACT welcomes tolerant refugees

ACT supports the increase in the refugee quota, but believes the Government should do more to ensure those arriving in New Zealand share our peaceful values.

“This level of increase is very close to where we would be if we had followed ACT’s policy of increasing the quota in line with our growing population,” says ACT Leader David Seymour.  “It will make a huge difference in the lives of these individuals, who have the potential to contribute greatly to this country.

ACT mourns for Orlando

ACT is deeply saddened by the recent shooting in Orlando.

“Our sympathies lie with the innocent victims and their families,” says ACT Leader David Seymour.

“It is vital that we stand by our values of freedom and tolerance, and condemn those who promote hatred, whether they are from within or outside New Zealand.

“This crime shows government and civil society must remain alert to the threat posed by those who do not share our liberal values.”

Reserve Bank must analyse LVR equity

It is disappointing that yet another Monetary Policy Statement has been released without analysis on the equity of loan-to-value ratios.

"The Governor is now talking about debt-to-income ratios, without asking what loan-to-value ratios have done to young and first home buyers," says ACT Leader David Seymour.

"Young people saving for a deposit took a kick in the guts when loan-to-value ratios kicked in, and now the Governor is blithely speculating that he will introduce debt-to-income ratios.

Petty Labour Party shoots down expansion of OIA

The Labour Party proved today their Official Information (Parliamentary Under-Secretaries) Amendment Bill was never about transparency, as they vetoed a move to increase its scope.

ACT Leader David Seymour had moved to bring the Bill back to select committee so it could be expanded to apply to the Ombudsman, the Judiciary, and the Auditor-General.

“The amendment in its current form is redundant, as Under-Secretaries like myself are already subject to the OIA, just via the appropriate Minister’s office," said Mr Seymour.

Free Press - 7/06/2016

Even Kiwis who think they are on the hard right of Attila the Hun are big softies by international standards.  They wouldn’t approve of real poverty and caste destiny in India, for instance.  A fair  go is part of our national identity.  Public opinion polling now says inequality is the number one issue.

NPS a victory for ACT ideas

Today’s National Policy Statement (NPS) implements some of ACT’s long-held views on housing.

“While others have attacked foreigners and proposed new taxes and red tape, ACT has always said that housing affordability is fundamentally a land supply issue.

“The NPS would not have focused on the importance of land supply if it weren’t for the influence of the Productivity Commission. The Commission was an ACT initiative announced in 2010.