Buzz from the Beehive
Health and housing are among the issues tackled on the Beehive website today.
Mind you, on the health front the government has focused some of its efforts on sexual and reproductive health in the Pacific, providing “new support” for access to contraceptives, family planning and other sexual and reproductive health services.
This (involving an investment of “a further NZ$30 million”) was announced by the Minister of Foreign Affairs during a visit to Port Moresby.
Back home, Associate Health Minister Ayesha Verrall was announcing funding for 23 research projects involving staff from universities, Māori and Pacific research organisations, health and disability providers, Crown Research Institutes and Te Whatu Ora Health New Zealand.
Each project is being funded for 12 months with allocations between $200,000 and $500,000. Funding comes from the COVID-19 health system response and the National Immunisation Programme.
Three announcements relate to the Government’s efforts to deliver on 2020 policy commitments, when the Labour Party said:
“We’re taking action to tackle New Zealand’s housing crisis and help more Kiwis into homes. There’s no single answer to the housing issues which were decades in the making, and it will take time to turn things around, but the policies we’re putting in place are already making a real difference.”
But the difference it is making did not satisfy the writer of an article on The Spinoff website in May
The article was headlined As Labour again fails to address the housing crisis, our most vulnerable suffer.
Guest writer Alan Johnson had been examining the Government’s 2022 Budget and complained :
“There were three notable features in budget 2022 for housing. KiwiBuild appears to have been quietly laid to rest, yet more money is to be spent on transitional housing and the provision of social housing may grow by 3-4%. Together these signal the extent of the government’s housing ambitions for the remainder of this parliamentary term and possibly for the rest of its tenure. If the government changes in 2023 then this is probably as good as it gets.”
The government doubtless will contend that the article was unfair and today it has made three announcements.
First, as Minister of Building and Construction, Megan Woods has announced that law changes to introduce a new voluntary certification scheme for modular component, or prefab, manufacturers, and strengthen New Zealand’s building product certification scheme have come into force today.
Second, as Minister of Housing and of Building and Construction, Woods announced that work to get more people into stable housing “is continuing at pace in Christchurch”, with six additional homes delivered in partnership between the government and community housing provider Ōtautahi Community Housing Trust.
Third, housing gets several mentions in a speech by Environment Minister David Parker on key decisions made by the Government about the new resource management system.
He explained how the new system will be more efficient and effective, and how it will enable infrastructure and development.
And he reiterated the government’s commitment to repealing the Resource Management Act and enacting the Natural and Built Environments Act and Spatial Planning Act this parliamentary term.
Among Parker’s observations:
“To better enable development within environmental biophysical limits, including a significant improvement in housing supply, affordability and choice, and timely provision of appropriate infrastructure, including social infrastructure like hospitals or schools.”
So let’s not be too hasty in getting huffy about the Government’s housing policies, eh?
Except that we were jolted by an article posted on Kiwiblog earlier this week. It said:
Jacinda Ardern in 2017 promised 100,000 Kiwibuild houses in 10 years, or by 2028.
Based on their current progress, they will make their 100,000 promise in the year 2313.
She promised that by 2022 the scheme will be going so well they would be completing a massive 250 homes week or 50 every weekday.
In the last five months they have completed 21 Kiwibuild homes which is one per week.
So they promised 250 a week, and they are delivering one a week.
Latest from the Beehive
7 SEPTEMBER 2022
Support for sexual and reproductive health in the Pacific
New support for access to contraceptives, family planning and other sexual and reproductive health services in the Pacific has been announced by the Minister of Foreign Affairs during a visit to Papua New Guinea (PNG).
Māori Economy prepare for Climate Action during 2021 Growth
Māori businesses are playing a key role in Aotearoa New Zealand’s, economic recovery and climate change planning according to the Tatauranga umanga Māori: 2021 report released today by Stats NZ.” Associate Minister of Statistics, Meka Whaitiri said.
Government law changes to enable faster consenting, more prefabs, comes into force
Law changes that introduce a new voluntary certification scheme for modular component, or prefab, manufacturers, and strengthen New Zealand’s building product certification scheme have come into force today.
7 SEPTEMBER 2022
More new high-quality public homes delivered in Christchurch
The work to get more people into stable housing is continuing at pace in Christchurch, with six additional homes delivered in partnership between the government and community housing provider Ōtautahi Community Housing Trust.
6 SEPTEMBER 2022
How the future resource management system will better enable development outcomes
This speech is the fourth in a number I have given in recent months to share some of the key decisions that have been made by the Government about the new system.
Successful funding for COVID-19 research round announced
Researchers from across New Zealand have received funding to undertake research into the ongoing impacts of COVID-19 and future pandemic responses.
Government invests in local infrastructure to support decarbonisation
Communities around New Zealand will benefit from upgraded, safer, and more people-friendly streets as the result of the Government’s Streets for People programme, Transport Minister Michael Wood announced today.