Over Easter, ACT MPs helped the media with some free opinion pieces. Parmjeet Parmar wrote in the Herald why she wants universities to be inclusive places, without rooms walled off by race. Todd Stephenson pointed out on Stuff that when the left activists ‘cancelled’ the likes of Posie Parker, it was only a matter of time before bigger, nastier bullies cancelled events they favoured. That’s why true liberals support free speech even when they disagree with what’s said. Todd’s article was listed one of the ‘most popular’ on Stuff, and ACT has plenty more content any time they want it.


The Coalition Government has released its latest Quarterly Plan, showing how far ACT punches above its weight. ACT’s 11 MPs make up just under one-in-six of the Government’s 68 MPs, but the Party’s policies make up half of the 36 actions. If someone tells you they gave their Party Vote to ACT, please thank them.

This week, Free Press runs through the commitments this quarter that relate to ACT, the Government’s public policy engine room. The full list is here.

The first five we could claim for ACT. Afterall the Party did campaign on reducing wasteful spending, cutting taxes, and making transport policy about serving people on their terms instead of socially engineering them. But 1-5 are messy, and the Government isn’t doing as much as ACT would.

We’re talking about commitments like making the three-three-storey-house law (Medium Density Residential Standard), optional for councils (1). ACT stood against the whole Parliament on this. We said mandatory zoning from Parliament would not build more homes, but it would further bugger up council infrastructure and annoy a lot of people. MDRS is going optional.

Introducing legislation to improve the rental market (2) means restoring no-cause evictions and fixed-term tenancies with shorter notice periods and pet bonds, all from the ACT coalition agreement.

Making it easier to use overseas building materials (3) is a long-time ACT campaign, where the Ministry of Regulation will have a lot to offer. A parallel regulatory regime for building materials already approved elsewhere was always wrong.

Reforming the National Policy Statement on Freshwater (4) is being led by ACT’s Andrew Hoggard, after years of campaigning by Mark Cameron to localise these decisions. In the same category is legislating to pause new SNAs before dealing to the existing ones (5).

National want to keep agricultural emissions out of the ETS, but only until 2030. The real deal is a split gas approach, hence the ACT policy of reviewing the methane science and targets for consistency with no additional warming from agricultural methane emissions (6).

Farmers and all businesses who use personal capital, not to mention households, will be better when the ACT’s commitment of reforming the Credit Contracts and Consumer Finance Act (CCCFA) (7) is done.

Within six months of election, a whole new department designed to identify and remove red tape will be in Early Childhood Education centres hearing from the regulated and preparing the legislate away bad laws. This is the first of many regulatory sector reviews (8).

The COVID-19 inquiry was left in a mess. Brooke van Velden is carrying out an elegant solution in line with ACT’s policy of opening it up to the public to change its terms of reference so the scope of the COVID-19 inquiry can be widened in line with the public will (9).

Staying with Brooke, many Ministers have tried and failed at cutting the gordian knot of Holiday Pay. Top employment lawyers, after hearing her speak, are privately saying Brooke can fix the Holidays Act mess (10).

ACT consistently pointed out the fact that Ardern’s oil and gas exploration ban shot ourselves in the foot. As part of ACT’s coalition agreement the oil and gas ban is going (11).

Sometimes National fights an ACT policy tooth and nail until one day it’s the best idea they ever had. One example of this special policy category is Three Strikes coming back (12).

The Firearms Registry should be gone (13) but assessing its value for money is the next best thing. If it can be shown effective at keeping people safe for a reasonable cost it can stay. Good luck!

In the same historical category as Three Strikes is Charter Schools coming back (14). When a centrally planned system is broken, you don’t need a better planner, you need innovation and entrepreneurship.

Staying with education, the burning platform is school attendance, led by David Seymour with ACT IP, including better data and triaging, the Government will be launching an Attendance Action Plan and introduce the first phase of initiatives to lift school attendance (15).

Another David Seymour-led initiative is streamlining the Medsafe approval process (16). It’s crazy to second guess the world on a particular medication with our own homegrown bureaucracy.

Karen Chhour campaigned against racial discrimination for years. As Minister for Children she’ll win the battle with the repeal of Section 7AA of the Oranga Tamariki Act (17).

Ok, 17 out of 36 is not quite half, so maybe we should claim, Deliver a budget that reduces wasteful spending while investing in frontline services like health, education and Police (18) for ACT. The Government may not be going nearly as far as ACT would on reducing wasteful spending, but it is still going further than it would without ACT.

If you voted ACT for action, we think this is a very good three months’ worth.

That's it for this week, be sure to stay tuned next Monday

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