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ALEX HOLLAND: Labour's spending

In 2017 when Labour came to power, crown spending was $76 billion per year. Now in 2023 it is $139 billion per year, which equates to a $63 billion annual increase (over $1 billion extra spend every week!) In 2017, NZ’s government debt stood at $112 billion. Today, excluding an accounting trick, that debt is now doubled at $224 billion or $115,000 per household. Meanwhile, in 2017 individual tax payers paid the government $33 billion. By 2023 this had gone up 67% to $55 billion to help fund Labours spending. Here is just some of the wasted spending (which most media swept under the carpet):

  • $2.75 million handed over to the Mongrel Mob to run a meth rehab programme. More than $100,000 of it spent on hiring a van, $239,400 spent on food & catering, $157,500 for Marae hire.

  • Arts, Culture and Heritage Minister Carmel Sepuloni husband, Daren Kamali, received $73,000 towards the Ulu Cavu Wig Tour of New Zealand. The project involved harvesting his 25-year-old dreadlocks to make a ceremonial wig in the ancient Fijian tradition.

  • $107,280 in taxpayer money given to a racist stage show about murdering James Cook, his descendants and 'white men like [him] with pig hunting knives’; ironically at the same time trying to stop ‘hate speech’.

  • $150,000 tax payer dollars for altering gang members’ tattoos to be more ‘Woke’ – e.g. removing ‘New Zealand’ and replacing with ‘Aotearoa’.

  • $51 million investigating the Boomer Bike Bridge to Birkenhead then scrapped it.

  • $21.6 million on the scrapped Income Insurance scheme.

  • $20 million on the scrapped TVNZ RNZ merger.

  • $800,000 on the scrapped hate speech laws.

  • $21 million on consultants just for Te Whatu Ora.

  • $21 million on consultants just for Te Pukenga.

  • $2.2 million on Maori Health Authority PR alone.

  • $72 million on Auckland light rail before anything actually physically done, $47m on consultants alone.

  • $12 million to provide farmer-to-farmer support to Māori landowners to milk sheep.

  • Ministry of Education spent $100,000 on wellbeing website then scrapped it as another new one replaces it.

  • Te Aka Whai Ora (Māori Health Authority) has spent an eye-watering $1,000,000 on their new Aroā Wellbeing website that invites users to 'scroll through the forest' to 'cleanse', 'breathe' and 'connect'. While $300,000 was spent on the website's design and creation, the Ministry could not provide the detail of how the remaining $700,000 was allocated as it did "not hold information on breakdown of costs into areas such as music, voice actors, and graphic design.”

  • Taxpayers shelled out $11,742.31 transporting a dead turtle from Banks Peninsula to Wellington, storing it in a freezer for 21 months, then sending it back down to where it washed up for a high-powered and fully-catered powhiri, complete with a helicopter ride and a handmade coffin constructed by public servants. No scientific research was performed at any stage.

  • Auckland Transport builds $32,000 bus stop on Great Barrier Island with no public transport. It also needed to be relocated due to safety concerns.

  • Taliban praise New Zealand Labour government over $3 million ‘humanitarian’ donation.

  • Ministry of Social Development ran virtual job expos at a cost of $835,000 with only 126 attendees over 2 years - that’s $6626 per person.

  • Wallaby eradicating programme cost over $2.7 million, more than 26,000 hours of labour with only 18 Wallabies killed = $153,000 per Wallaby! Cheaper to hire a private jet per Wallaby to send back to Australia.

  • When this Labour government took over, the spend on emergency housing was $11 million per year, now it is over $365 million per year.

  • Campaign by Labour to have shorter showers cost the tax payer $2.8 million dollars including distributing a booklet in 7 different languages.

  • August 2023: The Covid wage subsidy is still being paid out by Labour on behalf of the tax payer to companies whose employee’s test positive and are isolating for 7 days.

  • $160 million worth of RAT tests paid by the tax payer to be thrown out. January 2022 – April 2023 = $44.27 million just to store Covid 19 PPE & RAT test warehousing. Pre 2022 Labour has no idea of what the costs were. $531 million worth of rapid antigen tests (RATs) still in stock with most unlikely to be used when private businesses could have purchased these and controlled minimal wastage. The cost to store these unused RAT tests is $100,000 per day.

  • $842,000 tax payer funds to research the experiences of ethnic women as politicians within NZs political systems.

  • January 2023: The ongoing rent for an immigration office in China closed more than a year ago has cost NZ taxpayers almost $3 million. Last year, the government wrote off $284 million of losses sustained by Immigration New Zealand (INZ), and has put visa levies up by 279 percent.

  • Labour have spent $10,000 tax payer dollars promoting Australian citizenship to Kiwis living in Australia.

  • Film Commission decided to give the American producers of the kids show ‘Power Rangers’ $1.6 million of our money just to include reference to a NZ Pavlova in one of its episodes.

  • Rod Steward was funded $918,000 by Tourism NZ for a single lip synced pre-recorded video of his song ‘Sailing’ during the Americas cup. He did not appear in person or cross live.

  • 3 weeks before cancelling the Bike Bridge to Birkenhead, Labour government leased 1092m3 of office space in Wynyard quarter Auckland CBD (some of the most expense office space in Auckland) to manage this canned project at a cost of approx. $500,000 which sat empty for almost a year.

  • Te Huia Hamilton-Auckland train – cost $98 million and losing money every time it runs. It is slower than taking a car and produces more emissions per person than a car, then it was banned from Auckland city after twice failing to stop on red.

  • $438 million from a ‘range’ of crown funds including from the Covid funds to do up 358 privately owned buildings (Marae).

  • $582,000 on a kid's slide outside Parliament.

  • Kāinga Ora's spent $24,354,759 of taxpayer money over the past four years on itself on office renovations. While Kāinga Ora spends millions on itself, it admitted in its 2022 annual report just 21 percent of its homes met the Healthy Homes Standards - meaning 54,000 homes failed. While 25,000 on Kāinga Ora's waitlist currently without a house.

  • The Department of Internal Affairs spent $1.36 million on furniture in a year where few of its staff were even in the office! ($700 for every staff member).

  • The new $26 million visitor centre for Punakaiki rocks built then given away to private owners.

  • September 2023: Auckland Light Rail has contracted to buy the prominent Kiwi Bacon Building for $33 million, even though National has promised to scrap plans if elected in a few weeks’ time. Labour is continuing without a business case and without a confirmed route, spending $2 million dollars in consultancy fees each week.

  • Total core crown expenses planned by Labour over next 4 years is forecast to be $578 billion, so the announcement by Labour to save $4 billion over next 4 years by reducing their massively inflated spend on contractors amounts to just 0.7% savings. When taking into account that $274 billion of that $578 billion is increased extra spend by this Labour government compared to when they came into power, then the $4 billion savings over the next 4 years amounts to only 1.5% reduction on the $274 increase they implemented.

  • Under Labour, now double the number of civil servants getting over $400,000 per year.

  • Labour government spent millions on foreign advertising campaigns promoting tourism to NZ when the PM has closed the borders to tourists from March 2020 for 2 years.

  • MSD paid exorbitant sums of $2000-$3000 per week for private rental properties for use as emergency accommodation, when the median rent that would typically have been paid for those properties was between $450 and $560 a week.

  • Kainga Ora unpaid rents under National government sat at about $750,000, under Labour it is $17 million, quadrupling just in the last 3 years – this is unrecoverable debt that the tax payer has to pay.

  • Kainga Ora management positions have ballooned by 86% in 2 years. Annual cost of the base salary now tops $100 million. They employed 319 managers in June of 2020 @ $58 million and in November 2022 they have 594 managers @ $103 million. Average salary is $173,000 base pay – ignoring purposive pay freeze.

  • $600,000 on a 30 second ad telling people to save energy, despite record energy prices.

  • Labour has a program for Kāinga Ora to borrow $2 billion to bid against private developers - paying over value to obtain land to build state houses on rather than letting private sector do it.

  • Over half a billion dollars given to Maori to go and get the free Covid vaccine (that no one else seemed to have an issue getting). When only a third of Maori children were vaccinated, they spent some of the money on buying candy floss, ice cream, hot dogs, thick shakes etc to entice them to get vaccinated, but rubbish food goes against being healthy during a pandemic. At the same time, Iwi are complaining about the Maori obesity rate and require special race-based funding for that.

  • Labour removed National’s public service targets in 2018, and since then has employed 14,000 extra public servants costing $1.7 billion with no discernible positive outcomes. 28% public sector increase while best performing countries perform with up to 49% less public servants. In 2017, the Ministry of Education had 2632 bureaucrats for 2550 schools. Now there are 3900+, and we don’t know what they do. Ministry of Education bureaucrats have increased 50% under Labour while front line staff (teachers) have only increased 4%.

  • Hastings' most expensive house sold in 2022 for $1.6 million, now used to house three teenagers for Oranga Tamariki. It was the largest price paid for a house in the city of Hastings, where the average price for a residential house was $784,000. The Crown also purchased an adjoining vacant property for $700,000 to turn into a vegetable garden and put a trampoline on. A neighbour said the cost of purchasing the properties ($2.3 million) and the subsequent four-months of renovation seemed enormous. If they’d shopped around, they’d have got three or four houses for that money and would have been able to house three or four times the people.

  • 3 waters advertising campaign - Ardern’s administration found itself in hot water with the Public Service Commission over its ‘inappropriate’ use of taxpayer money on a $3.5 million advertisement campaign to convince ratepayers of the benefits of its widely controversial Three Waters reforms, a review deeming the absence of factual information and ‘misleading’ exaggeration, ‘concerning’.

  • MIQ didn’t have to be pre-paid, so now chasing many that was never paid and don’t even know some of the people’s details to chase them (chasing & debt collectors also at cost of tax payer). Taxpayers have spent $1.2 billion on MIQ – $660 for every household in the country.

  • $49,999 towards an Indigenised Hypno-soundscape to take you to the ‘imagined worlds of our Korero Purakau’.

  • 20 per cent of commercial spectrum given to Māori that could have been sold, a permanent Māori spectrum entity to be established and $75 million of government funding will go towards development.

  • Annual spend of $34 million to ‘enhance Te Reo’.

  • $139 million gun buyback resulting in gun crime soaring as gangs still have the guns. Administering the scheme will cost $35 million, almost double what was budgeted. The extra money will come out of the budget for community policing. “The Auditor-General was unable to determine if New Zealanders were any safer as a result of the Government’s gun buyback scheme.”

  • $55 million fund for media to follow the governments agenda. In any other country, this would be considered government interference in the fourth estate.

  • Minister of Arts, Culture & Heritage (Jacinda at the time) approved $18,000 to create and develop an online publication, arts learning resources and musical content based on children’s drag theatre show ‘The Glitter Garden’.

  • Housing agency under fire for $30,000 spent on a carving.

  • Tax payer funded ACC ads on radio saying think before going for a bike ride as you might hurt yourself.

  • Labour wrecked an industry on a Captain’s Call (oil & gas) and then presided over the largest imports of dirty coal we have ever seen, into a country that is sitting on huge coal reserves.

  • Mental health sector struggling to get funding but Arts and culture sector gets huge Govt funding boost. The Cultural Sector Emergency Relief Fund has also been provided an additional $35.5 million to fund more direct support for individuals and organisations. The limit on funding for individual organisations has been increased from $100,000 to $300,000.

  • By February 2022, the government home ownership scheme housed just 58 families in 19 months.

  • 37,000 more kids are in benefit-dependent homes than when Labour’s government began 4 years ago.

  • Giving away most of NZ's first purchased Covid vaccines to other countries for free (Pacific Islands).

  • Sport NZ has spent $4.7 million conducting surveys in the last four years (up to March 2022), interrogating New Zealanders on what kind of physical activity they do, how often, and for how long. Obsessively tracking New Zealanders' participation in yoga, gardening, and tramping may be a fun statistical exercise, but it hardly seems like a priority during a cost of living crisis.

  • Labour spent $200,000 on social media listening reports – what people say online (spying on the public). They refuse to make the reports public or methodology used, 52 reports year to March 2022.

  • In Feb 2017 there were 67,000 people on a ‘Work Ready’ benefit, at Feb 2021 that figure had doubled to over 130,000 – at the same time Labour are claiming a low unemployment rate.

  • $32 million measles vaccine rollout only reached a mere 7 per cent of the targeted number of people putting the cost at $1300 per person. Labour was forced to destroy $8 million worth of expired measles vaccine due to their inability to manage vaccine demand. $3 million went towards 'equity group' but only 28 kids in Tairawhiti vaccinated in those 2 years of the campaign.

  • 2022 NZTA putting up fees on average 40% in one go, getting nothing more back from it – in affect a new tax.

  • New Zealand taxpayers are now spending $151,000 per prisoner, per year – an increase of over $30,000 per prisoner from 2018/19. Overall, there has been an increase of $139 million poured into the Corrections system over the period between 2018/19 and 2020/21, despite Labour reducing prisoner numbers.

  • National said each job created by the Provincial Growth Fund was costing the taxpayer $484,000 - that’s nearly half a million dollars.

  • The Ministry for Pacific Peoples spent $260,000 on catering last year despite only having 127 staff members - that is over $2000 per staff member. In 2017, they had just 35 staff.

  • The Ministry for Pacific Peoples spent $40,000 on a leaving event including $7,500 worth of gifts for Mr Leauanae who was moving down the road to become CEO of the Ministry of Culture and Heritage. Then the Ministry of Culture and Heritage held a welcoming party and flew 5 of his family in to celebrate him starting the new job.

  • The Ministry for Pacific Peoples spent $121,000 on Prezzy cards for pregnant Pacific Women to go to the doctor. The Ministry has no outputs other than gross expenditure. They have 9 press staff and zero press releases in the 2021/22 year.

  • The Ministry for Pacific Peoples spent $52,587.76 of taxpayer money on Budget breakfast events.

  • The Ministry for Pacific Peoples expenditure has risen 477% in the past 5 years, including the number of people earning over $100,000 increasing from 29.3% to 65%.

  • After all the lockdowns & billions spent, Covid deaths per million in NZ on a 7 day rolling average was higher than USA (as at 30/3/22).

  • While hospitals are failing and over $1 million dollars is spent on emergency housing (motels) every day, Covid Response Grant funds were spent on anything & everything including:

    • Atawhai Interactive Tapui, which received $250,000 towards production of Toroa, that gives tamariki and rangatahi an experience to fly as Toroa on its journey from the Pacific Ocean back to its home on Taiaroa head. It will explore the themes of whakapapa as the Toroa soars over the ocean, deified as Takaroa, on the winds of Tāwhirimatea.

    • $1,323,000 Taki Rua Productions - The development and delivery of two immersive live productions of large-scale contemporary Māori performing arts pieces.

    • $1,015,300 Māori land Charitable Trust to deliver Purita, a capability system to enable identification and development of Māori potential.

    • $700,000 on a "digital storytelling experience" about the Manawatū River.

    • $248,460 on traditional Māori painting.

    • $20,000 Te Rūnaka o Ōtākou scoping the use of a web platform to leverage pūrākau [myths and legends], and traditional and contemporary technologies to connect with the Ōtākou diaspora.

    • $20,000 on a business plan for Tongan mat-weaving.

    • $20,000 To develop a business plan for virtual reality recreations of current Māori wāhi tapu [sacred places] with an initial focus on Kāi Tahu marae and their historic sites of interest.

    • $20,000 To contribute to the creation of a te reo Māori children’s book which uses an app to embellish the story with music and claymation videos, and allows the reader to recreate waiata using instrumental loops.

  • Energy Efficiency & Conservation authority spending $2.4 million to encourage people to ‘use less power’, running ads that cost $11,000 per second. Government wasteful spending of taxpayer funds during times of highest inflation in 30 years.

  • As at April 2022, Waka Kotahi spending $200-400,000 on temporary fences each time there is a cycling race over the Harbour bridge - 5 events over following 10 months costing 1-2 million dollars in sunken funds for no long-term benefit. Why not just have cycle races that don’t involve the harbour bridge?

  • Government launched a $98 million dollar strategy to reduce Maori over-representation in prisons in August 2019. Now with the lowest numbers in prison (because they avoid putting people in prisons under this government – overall prison numbers reduced by 18%) but 53.4% are Maori (2017 was only 50.7%). Female: 65% are Maori - so it has gone the wrong direction – what was $98 million spent on? Will we ever find out?

  • Auckland Airport’s $40,000 grass painted (very temporary) welcome sign at wrong end of runway (predominant wind is westerly) for first arrivals after NZ opened back up from Covid, paid for by Tourism New Zealand & Auckland Airport. Not only was it at the wrong end, why was it needed during times of record debt & inflation?

  • Three months after NZ borders first reopened after Covid restrictions, government still spending $10 million a month on Covid contact tracing, one contact tracer without work for weeks left job as getting paid to do nothing & not ‘ethically right’.

  • May 2022: Three Waters spend-up: $14m on increasing Iwi/Maori understanding of the changes, $2.5 million of it to consultancy firm Martin Jenkins, closely linked to Doug Martin who is chair of 3 waters working group! $34 million in trying to sell water reforms to the public, $416 million spent on 3 waters to date even though the majority of New Zealanders & councils don’t want it and the next government has guaranteed that it will be reversed.

  • Energy Minister Megan Woods handed out $68 million worth of corporate welfare payments to major businesses replacing their boilers and heating systems. These businesses are massive, profitable operations. They already have strong financial incentives to improve energy efficiency, and they certainly don't need taxpayer help. The latest announcement saw capsicum grower Southern Paprika get $5 million to install a new biomass boiler. Meat producer ANZCO and textile manufacturer Canterbury Spinners each got more than a million dollars, and DB breweries got $500,000. And here's the shocker: the handouts won’t even reduce New Zealand’s carbon emissions.

  • Someone is being paid $132,000–$155,000 tax payer dollars to lead a team in charge of handing out awards to recognise people involved in the COVID-19 response. The prize is a lapel pin.

  • April 2022: Thousands of high salaried public servants have received pay rises despite the Government's pay freeze. More than 2500 Government workers earning over $100,000 a year got pay rises that were only meant to be granted in "exceptional circumstances".

  • A 10-day jaunt to the Oscars by two NZ Film Commission officials cost taxpayers $58,000.

  • 2022 Budget: $14 million for an "historical account of the Dawn Raids", then forgot to tell anyone to stop doing them. $185 million in arts and culture grants “to help build a resilient cultural sector as it continues to adapt to the challenges coming out of COVID-19”.

  • June 2022: Social housing waiting list = 27,000, which is 5 times more than when Labour came into power in 2017. Tax payer funding for transitional housing doubled in prior 2 years, now at $330 million, $62 million over their own budget.

  • June 2022: Communication staff has increased almost 50% since Labour come into power in 2017. In 2017 there were 339 ‘communication’ staff ($33 million), now there are 497 at $55 million dollars per year.

  • $336,000 spent for Jacinda to open Transmission Gully Road after cancelling many roading projects.

  • $220,000 spent on the ideal dates to mark Matariki and appropriate ways of celebrating the holiday.

  • Between March 2020 and April 2022, over $557,000 was spent by 31 government departments on off-site days. Overall, about half (49%) of away days were out of town, some in Resort and Spa’s in Martinborough. Two retreat days were in late February 2022, just as the country was experiencing historic highs of Covid-19 cases.

  • June 2022: 350,000 people on main benefits in NZ, 100,000 on ‘work ready’ benefits, yet Ministry of Social Development spends $100,000 on advertising fruit picking jobs rather than getting some of these beneficiaries the jobs.

  • RNZ used $43,000 tax payer dollars to pay for an Australian theme song for its NZ radio station.

  • May 2022: Labour government spent $2.7 million in advertising for 41,000 Covid jabs = $66 in advertising per jab, when in February = $3 per jab, March = $9 per jab, April = $29 per jab, May = $66 and at no point have looked at cost benefit, just kept ploughing along spending tax payer money. No one looking at best bang for buck, no objectives to measure effectiveness.

  • June 2022: Labour government just spent $10 million for 13 houses in Northland, above average cost, for social housing!

  • July 2022: Labour has increased government agency advertising spending 122% in last 5 years in power. $125 million dollars in last financial year compared to $56 million when they took power. The Department of Prime Minister & Cabinet was $2 million per year in 2017 (when Labour took power), in 2022 it was $26 million!

  • Labour has paid out $101,770,725 dollars in ‘clean car rebates’ (i.e. private electric/hybrid car purchases) until May 2022 and only gathered $14 million in takings = $87.8 million on tax payer to fund other people’s car purchases. One of the promises made is that it would be cost neutral – more ideology without any foundation.

  • July 2022: Labour has spent $1 billion a year on consultants after lifting the cap on hiring. Ministry of Culture & Heritage increased spending on consultants by 700%. Ministry for Pacific Peoples increased spending on consultants by 244%. The Education Review Office increased spending on consultants by 154%.

  • July 2022: Labour said to reserve bank that NZ tax payer would back the $100 billion printing of money if bonds dropped in value. Now that interest rates have gone up that equates to $9 billion in extra debt tax payers have to cover. That equates to $150-$200 million every month for 5 years to cover it. Australia’s government didn’t do this for that very reason.

  • Overseas kiwis, previous temporary immigrants and dead people received Labour’s $350 cost-of-living payment.

  • Government funded polytechnic to convert its workbooks and assessments for its level 3 automotive engineering course to Te Reo Māori.

  • Affordable housing agency Kāinga Ora buys Ferncliffe Farms partial swamp land on inflated valuations for $70.4 million.

  • Labour spent $415,000 to recruit a total of 3 critical care nurses.

  • Labour spent $600,000 in advertising tax payer funded half price public transport to current public transport users (including advertising in bus stops).

  • 4000 people get the benefit because they are “too stressed”, 2800 of them have been on the benefit for more than 5 years giving this reason. 4100 get a benefit because they are addicted to drugs, over 1000 of them have been on the benefit for more than 10 years giving this reason, costing the tax payer $76 million every year.

  • Nanaia Mahuta was associate minister when her husband's firm was awarded $72,999 Government contract to facilitate six meetings and 14 workshops to engage with Māori and to provide a "high-level overview" of the agency's Auckland housing projects – why do Maori need a $73k consultant just to organise some meetings?

  • In 2016/17 $13 million spent per year on market research & polls. Now under Labour its $28 million. PM’s office was spending $73,000 per year on market research & polls in 2016/17, now its $245,000. MBE was $1 million a year, now its $5 million, MPI $1.3 million a year, now its $4.1 million, Ministry for Pacific Peoples $60,000 a year, now its $520,000.

  • September 2022: Over $16 million has been spent on Three Waters consultant fees, which included $14,570 to produce one job description and almost $2 million for communication services. The Bill that creates their entities wasn’t even out of select committee, and the Government was already spending your money developing descriptions for jobs that didn’t even exist.

  • In 2022, Labour increased New Zealand’s deficit $5.1 billion to $9.7 billion. That’s $4,830 amount per household – money we will need to pay back.

  • Labour used more than $70 million from Covid fund to boost money in the 3 waters reform programme despite Grant Robertson saying they would focus unspent funds on meeting direct costs of responding to the pandemic.

  • Under Labour, NZ passports were changed to Maori being before English, not only on the cover but all through the passport – at a cost to the taxpayer. Now when any passport control outside of NZ goes to read the passport, they are confronted with a language they don't know before finding the English translation - that is a completely illogical move, wasting everyone's time, just to show more wokeness at any opportunity. It is the reverse of a cost v benefit decision, but typical of this government's waste & agenda.

  • $360,000 for research project Taniwha: A Cultural History.

  • Taxpayers are having to spend at least $75 million per year on additional days off for Public Servants. In the year that’s been, taxpayers paid public servants for over 167,000 days that they weren’t even at work, excluding the normal four weeks leave and public holidays.

  • Jacinda Ardern was willing to spend $678 million to subsidise businesses to decarbonise, but says free dental care is an unaffordable dream. The 2020 estimated cost of free dental care was $648 million.

  • While staying at a London hotel in July 2022, Minister O’Connor and his staffer spent $475 on laundry services for just two days' worth of clothes. The Minister appears to be a serial clothes-spoiler. His own receipts show that just two days prior he had used the laundry services of another hotel, this time in Belgium.

  • Kainga Ora spent $204,897 on koha between 2019-2021 (interact with marae or have someone perform a ceremonial role, majority of time it has been a monetary contribution).

  • Road to Zero - $62 million dollars on advertising to slow down etc and yet the worst death toll on roads last year ever.

  • James Shaw in October 2021 updated Paris agreement target for NZ is to pay $12.8 billion to developing countries for them to plant trees over the next 10 years.

  • $514,000 overseas recruitment ad campaign to recruit more health professionals from overseas (and that's not including video production or consultant cost) 'a failure' after just 3 people were interviewed.

  • Trade account deficit worst it has ever been at 33.8 billion, 8.9% of GDP (spending more overseas than we are earning - average since 1988 is 3.7 per cent) This was the largest deficit since the Stats NZ series began in 1988, and saw the International Monetary Fund (IMF) rank New Zealand the third-worst performer among advanced economies.

  • Grant Robertson has increased education spending by 46 per cent since 2017, from $11.1 billion to $16.2 billion. The extra $5.1 billion has had similar results to Robertson’s $1.9 billion more for mental health (nothing improved with minimal increase to the pool of mental health professionals).

  • April 2023: 3 waters spend so far: $56 million on consultants, $18 million on permanent staff, out of $94 million. Some consultants on $646 per hour, $220 per hour for a ‘strategic advisor’ in Maori.

  • The government has announced a $25.7 million annual funding increase for Radio New Zealand and an extra $10 million for NZ on Air this year following the collapse of the RNZ-TVNZ merger. This is with the main purpose of extending Maori content & viewpoints on public radio. ZB breakfast show is no.1 in NZ by far (3 producers), a distant 2nd is RNZ breakfast show which has 17 producers… no wonder extra funding is needed.

  • 800 more DoC staff but less pest control than before. Government sending massive amounts of tax payer dollars overseas for other countries forests instead of using that money on ours.

  • Tax take relative to GDP, on 2021 data NZ sits at 33.8 per cent vs Australia at 28.5 per cent and the US at 26.6 per cent.

  • Government bonds & treasury bills are now at $106 billion which is 75% more than May 2019. $29 billion dollars required in more debt than what Labour calculated 9 months ago. To service this is $6 billion in just interest repayments (equivalent to all expenditure on Police, Corrections & Justice). Interest repayments now forecast to be $10 billion in 2024.

  • Communications staff in core public service up 50 percent since Labour came into government.

  • Auckland Transport (AT) spent almost $20,000 on taxicabs to Harry Styles concert at Mt Smart for about 1000 concertgoers when key railways lines were closed and buses were too busy.

  • More than $1 million tax payer dollars was given to people who didn’t fill in their census on time (bribes), $934,000 went to just 12,000 people (supermarket vouchers, petrol vouchers & movie tickets), $96,000 on Warriors tickets along with an entry to win a trip to Australia. Now (unsurprisingly) many are not going to fill in their census next time until they get something for free for it. Next, they will be incentivising offenders to sit on roofs with free KFC to bring them down.

  • Minister of Statistics & Deputy Government Statistician had a budget of $210 million for the 2023 census, it is now $317+ million (50%+ over budget).

  • May 2023: The Ministry of Youth Development spent $300,000 of taxpayer money making three videos. The first two received less than 200 views each on YouTube, and one hasn't even been posted there! How many counselling sessions could this have paid for?

  • A charity in Rotorua dealing with troubled people gets most of its $4.66m budget from government contracts. From the Ministry of Housing & Social development, their contribution in 2021 was $237,000, in 2022 it went to $2.9 million in one year – to deal with security & gangs and trouble within emergency housing in Rotorua. Labour’s ideology around being soft on anti-social behaviour and criminals is failing badly to say the least.

  • Healthcare spending is projected to rise from $17.2 billion in 2018 to $26.4 billion in 2024. Where are the results?

  • Why have education departmental expenses risen from $1.3 billion to $2.2 billion? The run-rate for departmental expenses has been faster than front-line expenses.

  • An additional $46 million has already been sunk and lost into these scrapped policies: Social Leasing, to provide vehicles to low income households; the Biofuels Mandate, which was to be implemented on April 1 2024 (delayed from April 2023); the TVNZ-RNZ merger; and the Income Insurance Scheme (delayed indefinitely rather than cancelled outright). Labour says it has saved money, but only in the same way that you might save your belongings from a burning building that you’d set alight yourself. And efficiency - which means getting the most output for the least input - has been badly scorched.

  • Twice the money being spent on kid’s school lunches than needs to be because ideologically they want everyone in the school to get free lunches if only a few students need it.

  • Government giving away $140 million to NZ Steel to help buy an electric furnace, even though they had one in the 1960’s but just didn’t use it. This is at the same time their owners Bluescope posted a $2.6 billion profit and also while investing billions in new plants in Australia to burn coal for the next 20 years. Meantime Transpower warns of potentially tight winter power supply.

  • Labour spending more than $30,000 per household per year above when it came to office. What’s to show for it, what has improved?

  • While hard working New Zealanders are getting taxed more than ever, beneficiaries through no effort have been given a 48% payment rise during this Labour government. Debt owed to government by beneficiaries has ballooned to $2.5 billion, owed by 600,000 people by on average $4167 each – repayments now need to be more than the winter energy payment.

  • $35 million subsidising people who could afford Tesla’s to buy Tesla’s.

  • New Zealand pledged to spend $375 million reducing greenhouse emissions and protecting communities in vulnerable countries. But according to official documents, millions of that went into planet-heating dairy and meat farming. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade funded projects to establish dairy farming in Fiji and Myanmar. Between 2015 and 2020, it also funded work to intensify meat or milk production in Laos, Sri Lanka and Uruguay.

  • June 2023: A branch of Treasury - NZ Debt Management (NZDM) is going to Bond market for $4 billion more than expected in December last year, a total of $120 billion of gross bond issuance for next 4 years – more than the previous 4 years which included Covid. Therefore, government can’t blame Covid on everything. The selling of them relies a lot on foreign investors due to the size of it, and this will likely lead to a NZ credit downgrade.

  • The paper trail tracking the Government’s handling of $640 million in the Provincial Growth Fund (PGF) was so poor that auditors had to ask officials to recall what happened in their meetings as there was “little to no evidence” of record-keeping or note-taking. There hadn’t been an “evaluation of the benefits” either.

  • On July 1st 2023, the following taxes increased: Petrol excise by 29 cents/litre (including GST), Road user charges by 56%, Ute tax by up to $1725, Alcohol tax by 6.6%. All to help fund Labours excessive spending.

  • Hipkins took 2 planes to China in case one broke down while Labour declared a ‘climate emergency’. $33 million spent on maintenance on these planes in less than a year, on top of $70 million spent in last 5 years, when you can lease a brand new Boeing for $4 million a year. Firstly reported as ‘nothing unusual’ to take two planes, then flipped to first time it has happened. The Acting Prime Minister claimed at the time that taking two planes overseas was cheaper than flying commercial. It turns out Hipkins’ extravagance cost the New Zealand taxpayer between $62,000 and $97,000 per hour. Ten times more than the $8,730 per hour that was reported at the time.

  • Jacinda declares a climate emergency then makes multiple flight attempts to Antarctica for a jolly during a cost of living crisis.

  • Dirty coal purchased from Indonesia doubled & burnt to produce electricity.

  • Instead of using NZ wool to recarpet more than 600 rural schools, the Labour government has gone with synthetic carpet from America.

  • Despite the recession and the cost of living crisis the IRD is spending $30 million on doing up their own offices.

  • Three Waters cost blowout expected to hit $1 billion in ‘mega-bureaucracy’ - the extra cost of creating 10 new Water Services Entities (WSEs).

  • The Ministry of Business, Innovation, and Employment (MBIE) treated some of New Zealand's Space Agency staff to business-class flights to Washington DC, costing $31,000. They attended the 25th Annual Federal Aviation Administration Commercial Space Transportation Conference. But the trip wasn't just about the conference itself. MBIE officials decided to extend their stay for a leisurely five days. The conference itself lasted only two days. The officials enjoyed the luxurious Grand Hyatt Washington Hotel, incurring a bill exceeding $5,500. Seems like a very tone-deaf policy during a cost-of-living crisis.

  • NZ deficit for the 11 months to the end of May 2023 stood at $6.5 billion, which was $2.1 billion higher than the forecast Labour released in the Budget. While Grant Robertson likes to compare NZ against other countries, the Australian Government’s cash surplus for the year to May was A$19 billion, massively ahead of the A$4.2 billion forecast in its Budget.

  • $249,815 for exploring Fat (Bias) within Health Spaces for Māori, will look at fat bias within healthcare settings for Māori and how it contributes to and is part of a system of oppression that inhibits and restricts access to wellness and equitable healthcare – but the recipient is a ‘young wahine Māori doctoral candidate’ – already laden with bias.

  • The tax payer paid free school lunches programme which was given an extra $323 million in the 2023 budget to keep it running until next year has resulted in up to 10,000 school lunches leftover each day and in July a Treasury report was hugely critical of it with found no evidence of impacting attendance or benefiting ākonga Māori - who make up around 48% of students receiving the free lunches.

  • Treasury warned Labour the big pharmacies (including Australian owned) would pocket up to $70 million from free prescriptions in last budget.

  • Ministry of Education spent $1 million tax payer dollars on advertising kids should go to school with ‘no expectation to raise attendance rates’. An additional $7.7 million allocated on top of existing budget to retain Maori & Pacific kids in school.

  • Despite Labour committing substantial funds to build 100,000 ‘Kiwibuild’ homes, 6 years on only 1.8% built.

  • Labour inherited an economy where the Government spent $27 out of every $100, or 27 per cent of GDP. This year it is forecast to spend $33 out of every $100, or 33 per cent of GDP. The Government takes up a bigger share of the economy, but produces less. The simple question is ‘what have taxpayers got for the extra money?’

  • Since 2017 when Labour took power, MSD has granted 628,659 emergency housing special needs grants at a total of $1.4 billion. In 2017 the average length of time in an emergency accommodation was 3.5 weeks, now it is 26 weeks.

  • All employees from the Department of Conservation will get paid $3500 (of tax payer money) if they attend a Maori language course.

  • The cost of cultural reports for reducing court sentences of offenders: in October of 2017, it was $3300 per month spent on them, by May 2023, the cost is now over $630,000 per month of tax payer dollars. One of the recipients was the Auckland CBD shooter who would have been locked up rather than out in the community with an ankle bracelet if didn’t have a cultural report.

  • Social services education council Toitū te Waiora chief executive Donovan Clarke spent just over a year on the job before an employment dispute saw him spend six months on paid leave meaning taxpayers were left with a bill approaching half a million dollars. Clarke’s publicly-funded card had been used to pay for alcohol and lobster in Sydney, numerous post-midnight taxi trips and that the $72,862 in total spent by Clarke over 11 months was more than twice as much the five other Workforce Development Council chief executives combined. Toitū te Waiora is one of six Workforce Development Councils set up by the Labour Government this term to bolster vocational training and education.

  • Labours polytechnic mega-merger was designed to address a 2019 polytechnic funding shortfall of just $40 million but has had over $200 million spent on the merger so far and now Te Pūkenga is looking for a further financial injection of $422.6 million from Government over the next four years. Labour was warned the Polytech merger wouldn't work, and it is already facing a $110 million deficit and criticism that it has not done enough to prepare for taking over industry training and polytechnics in 2023. Stephen Town (chief executive) had been on personal leave from his job which pays up to $13,000 a week and still getting paid until he finally resigned.

  • Despite his abrupt departure midway through an independent workplace probe, the former KiwiRail chief executive was paid out $500,000 for the notice period he didn’t work out.

  • Three Waters: so many people leaving due to the uncertainty of the reform that they are now paying cash retention payments to stay – not costed or budgeted for, just further expense for something that National/ACT government is going to abolish. This is yet another clear indicator that the transition risks and costs of Labour's Three Waters reforms are much greater than Labour would admit.

  • Let’s Get Wellington Moving (LGWM) project: Despite the lack of asphalt laid, consultant expenses have already exceeded $130 million, while the overall costs have ballooned from $2.3 billion in 2018 to $7.4 billion – that's $3,766 per Kiwi household, just for Wellington. It comes as no surprise that the only project completed by the bureaucracy to date is a $2.4 million pedestrian crossing – so much for getting the city moving.

  • Despite Labour opposing the Pūhoi to Warkworth highway (remember Chris Hipkins and Grant Robertson labelling it the 'holiday highway'), they couldn't give up an opportunity for a knees-up! Having learnt nothing from the lavish Transmission Gully opening ceremony last year, Waka Kotahi – along with Auckland Transport this time – spent at least $44,380 on the opening ceremony for the Pūhoi to Warkworth highway.

  • Four members of the New Zealand Film Commission (NZFC) staff embarked on a jaunt to the French Riviera, courtesy of your hard-earned money, costing $73,000. They spent $31,000 on plane tickets, $24,000 on wining and dining in style, and hosting a series of events, including 'producer speed dating', and $17,000 on lavish accommodation. They arrived in Cannes five whole days before the festival officially kicked off and stayed for three days after it wrapped up.

  • Parliament's new 'Te Kāhui Mōuri' (2 wooden Maori poles) unveiled in July 2023 cost $500,000, described as "tone-deaf" during a cost of living crisis when Kiwis are "being asked to tighten their belts".

  • Spending on health is up 48% since the last election yet A&E waiting times are through the roof. Law and order spending has increased by 27%, but the country is gripped by ram-raiding and violent crime.

  • Labour is now spending 82% more than in 2017 without any clear KPIs because the Public Services Act brought in by Labour has disconnected accountability between the elected minister and the chief executive of any department.

  • Westpac chief economist expecting debt blowout: Government expected to borrow $35 billion more than planned eight months ago.

  • Over $380 million per year on first year fees free tertiary study with little positive outcome.

  • Deputy head of the Department of Internal Affairs gets a $17,000 welcome party.

  • TVNZ was paid $300,000 & Stuff $200,000 by Government agency EECA to air a series of climate change pieces which wasn’t made clear to viewers/readers that it was paid content (political propaganda) as opposed to independent editorial decision-making.

  • August 2023: Kainga Ora is spending quarter of a million dollars every month to lease a Wellington apartment building, only to leave half the flats completely unfilled and only 10-20 per cent occupied most of this year. In total Kainga Ora has lost $3,512,151.67 since December on the unoccupied units. The Project and Facilities Manager complained about Kainga Ora’s inaction in May.

  • The Government’s housing agency Kāinga Ora is under fire for spending $312,025 a year on seven expensive Bloomberg computers. Kāinga Ora had been issuing its own debt. This meant the agency could borrow to fund its housing build programme on its own, without going through Treasury, like most other government departments. It issued about $2.5 billion a year and currently has $12.1 billion in debt in its portfolio.

  • Ministry of Education bought 100 million face masks using tax payer dollars during Labours Covid fear & control campaign, the majority of which are sitting in storage costing $26,000 every month, over $350,000 already up to August 2023. They can’t even give them away, no one wants them, so are spending $120,000 to dispose of them.

  • Port Chalmers cycleway build included moving the main trunk railway line so cost $44 million dollars = $5 million per kilometre! Wellington cycleway is costing the tax payer $314 million, Waikato cycleway beside the express way has been funded at $3 million per kilometre – none of these will be tolled like new roads.

  • Net Debt is going to be 22.8% to GDP in 2024, in 2019 it was 1.8% (that’s a 12.6 fold increase).

  • The IMF report shows NZ has the 2nd largest fiscal deficit of any advanced country in the world at present.

  • September 2023: Labour spinning Prefu results as good, the reality:

    1. We are not returning to surplus until 2027 - Labour has now pushed out a surplus 7 years straight, which is worse than after the GFC & Christchurch earthquakes.

    2. Tax revenue is dropping compared to what Labour forecasted.

    3. Expenses are rising from what they originally thought.

    4. Debt to GDP is worse.

    5. Next government Bond issue (debt) to 2027 is worse.

    6. Inflation is higher for longer.

  • Before the last election, Labour promised spending this year by the government would be $116.1 billion, but they have spent $139 billion.

  • IRD data shows over 50,000 people owe almost $238 million to IRD – massive increase under Labour.

  • MBIE = 137% increase in head count, Ministry for the Environment = 62% increase in head count.

  • Tax payer funded university running a project & offering financial reward to participate in Māori perspectives on forensics data.

  • Kāinga Ora's deficit has blown out to more than two-and-a-half times that forecast for the 2022 year and more than double last year’s deficit. Wages and salaries, excluding benefits up 48.9%.

  • $6.4 million on a campaign to young men to 'own your feelings'.

  • Millions spent on Covid app Blue tooth tracking then was never used as intended.

  • The Institute of Economic Research: Annual average GDP forecast to slow to 0.4% in the year to March 2024 (due to massive government spending that manufactured a recession).

  • Statistics NZ was giving gang members tax payer incentive payments to complete their census forms.

  • Corrections NZ giving $100,000 of tax payer funds to gang members to remove tattoos.

  • Maori private business given tax payer money e.g. $14 million given to Wai Ariki Hot Springs and Spa.

  • Labour handed out $70 million in tax payer dollars to set up 30 Iwi lead community panels instead of courts for Maori offenders.

  • This Labour government caused the biggest avoidable spend in NZ history brought on by sheer incompetence by being the slowest OECD country in the world to start the Covid vaccine rollout and actually decreasing ICU capability compared to March 2020 (384 down to 300) costing billions in lockdowns to protect hospitals.

  • Labour is spending $650 million tax payer dollars in corporate welfare to subsidise businesses (many of whom are very profitable) to cut emissions that they should be responsible for. $162 million for Maori organisations to reduce emissions, including $36 million for “matauranga [traditional knowledge]-based approaches to reducing biological emissions” and $30 million for “Maori Climate Action”.

  • $188 million for the separate Māori Health Authority which National is going to repeal.

  • $100 million to support centuries-old treatments called “maramataka” - the Maori tradition of using the moon and stars to help treat mental health issues.

  • $6.2 million was allocated to develop a Treaty partnership programme to ensure Maori ‘participate in, benefit from and make decisions’ over anything identified as ‘taonga’.

  • Labour announced a $730 million Maori housing budget to build 1000 homes and repair 700 ‘owner-occupied’ homes over four years.

  • Labour committed over $100 million on a business case for Lake Onslow pumped hydro scheme while knowing that National will repeal it.

  • $20 million establishing new “Iwi-Maori Partnership Boards” (i.e. introducing co-governance to the new health system).

  • $3 million for “marae connectivity”.

  • The Auditor General found Labours $30 million purchase of Ihumatao land (post full & final local Iwi Tribunal settlement) to be unlawful because it did not seek the correct approvals from Parliament, then little has happened with the land since in terms of the housing programme it was purchased for.

  • $178 million for councils dealing with RMA reform with a new “National Maori Entity” to co-govern resource management.

  • $11.1 billion allocated to restructure & run the new health system during a global pandemic.

  • April 2022: The OECD warned months ago that the country needs to rein in its spending.

Please see my previous posts:

  • Labour's Failures

  • Race Based Division

As a concerned (and previously proud) citizen of this great country and someone who is not associated with any political party, organisation or union, I've compiled lists of where Labour has taken this country over the past 6 years. The objective is to bring awareness to those who don’t have the time to investigate the outcomes of this government’s actions or inactions, and especially to those that don’t see through the propaganda of the once neutral MSM. Alex Holland.

38,723 views94 comments


And what are the majority of NZers in the 40 to 60 year olds doing about it. Their heads are in the sand and they are too lazy to speak up and do something about this useless government. We have kids making more noise about climate change than responsible Middle Agres doing something about the wast of tax payers money on Maorification of the country. If the Maori want separate health and education let them pay for it with the $70 billion of assets that they pay no tax on. God help my grandchildren


They just think it’s a waste voting with MMP voting


What an awful mess this country is in!

Now we have Stuff journalists desperately trawling through old social media posts to support their Labour / Greens agenda. Clearly announcing where their political leanings are to keep the ridiculous MSM gravy train going. Tova O'Brien is one of the worst, maybe because she needed a job after getting the boot from Today FM.

I am no homophobe or racist, I believe in a democratic society where everyone deserves respect and equal rights, and liking a social media post should never get you cancelled. Maybe Stuff should be spending their time investigating whether Chris Hipkens was a recreational drug user? Not that I judge that either, but talk about Hipkens being a…


If only there was a billboard large enough to advertise all the above to the public.


So good!!




David monstered Moana in his interview with her.

She was muted.

David had her not knowing whether she was coming or going.

The man is what NZ needs.

Vote ACT.

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