“Finance Minister Grant Robertson has taken in an extra $1.5 billion in taxes than Treasury had forecast, as New Zealanders continue to be squeezed from every direction,” says ACT Leader David Seymour.

“Treasury today announced that Core Crown tax revenue for the six months to 31 December 2021 was $1.5 billion (3.0%) above forecast.

“Labour’s Covid-19 response has been running on a sugar hit of cheap credit and borrowed money.

“That money is now sloshing around the economy and pushing up the price of everything. On top of that, Kiwis paying are huge amounts in tax.

“Doing the groceries, filling up the car and paying the rent is more expensive because of Labour’s out of control borrowing and spending – but wages aren’t keeping up. Workers are going backwards under Labour.

ACT has set out a range of solutions to the cost of living crisis. In particular, we would:

Deliver a middle-income tax cut:

  • Reduce the middle-income tax rate from 30% to 17.5%. Our plan will allow the average full-time worker to keep $2,000 more a year to help deal with the rising cost of living. That’s almost $40 more a week in the pockets of hardworking taxpayers to help them with the cost of life.

Skills and immigration:

  • End MIQ in favour of home isolation for fully-vaccinated, negative tested travellers, so Kiwis can come home, and international students and tourists can return
    • Allow existing student visa holders and their partners to apply for the 2021 Resident Visa
    • Allow offshore work visa holders to apply for the 2021 Resident Visa.

Cut wasteful spending

  • Zero base the public service by going back to zero and ask ourselves, if the departments and bureaucracies we have now didn’t exist, would we establish them today.

“Labour’s chickens have come home to roost with a mountain of debt and rising prices, and Kiwi Battlers are finding it difficult to make ends meet. We can’t afford to continue like this.

“ACT’s package of solutions will make life more affordable for middle New Zealand. Parents shouldn’t have to choose between swimming lessons for their kids and tank of petrol, or watch as the Government’s coffers swell while their bank accounts shrink. We will keep listening to the concerns of New Zealanders and pushing for better solutions to make life more affordable for Kiwi families.”