“Labour and National are offering different shades of beige when it comes to government spending with only ACT promising real change,” says ACT Leader David Seymour.

“Labour’s budget will spend more money than any government in the history of New Zealand, but the results will be mediocre. Government spending is up 61 per cent over five years, but no area of public service has improved.

“Yesterday, I asked the Prime Minister to name one outcome that has improved – he couldn’t because there isn’t one.

“Education spending is up 38 per cent, but kids are attending school less often and they’re learning less when they go. Health spending is up 68 per cent, but the system is widely reported to be in a state of collapse.

“Meanwhile, National says there’s waste in Wellington, but it can’t say what is wasted.

“ACT is again the only party proposing a fully-costed alternative budget. A Time For Truth reduces spending by $38 billion over four years, without touching frontline services. The budget would also leave every earner better off.

“There are three areas where spending needs to be reduced. The Government needs to stop:

  • Giving taxpayers their own money back in middle class welfare. What is the point in giving a high earner a KiwiSaver subsidy then taxing them 33 cents in the dollar?
  • Taxing profitable businesses, only to give giving it to those making losses through corporate welfare
  • Wasting money in Wellington on programmes with no measurable outputs, starting with a reduction of 14,000 new bureaucrats who aren’t adding value, because we got by without them before Labour was elected in 2017.

“Labour and National offer the same. Their rhetorical differences dwarf their policy differences. For example, Grant Robertson’s promise to find $4 billion of savings is 0.8 per cent of government spending so 99.2 per cent of spending will continue. The same tax structure, perhaps with minor adjustments for inflation will remain. The same government departments will continue with bigger budgets for the same goals they fail to meet. Layers of handouts, built-up like lasagne, one bribe at a time, will continue.

“Our alternative budget attacks wasteful government spending by shrinking the bureaucracy. It reduces the number of public servants and removes whole departments that add no value for the public.

“Evicting the current government only to keep its policies isn’t change. We need to evict bad ideas to deliver real change.”

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