ACT New Zealand is a free market political party in New Zealand. Until the New Zealand general election, 2011 it was led by former National Party leader and Reserve Bank Governor Don Brash. The party's current leader is John Banks.
ACT now has one member of the Parliament of New Zealand, which is John Banks, a former two-term Auckland mayor and Police and Tourism ministers in the New Zealand National Party Bolger administrations of the nineties.
According to former party leader Rodney Hide, the party stands for "individual freedom, personal responsibility, doing the best for our natural environment and for smaller, smarter government in its goals of a prosperous economy, a strong society, and a quality of life that is the envy of the world".
The name comes from the ...
The ACT Party will support the Government's new legislation on covert surveillance, conditional on an urgent select-committee hearing.
The party's parliamentary leader, John Boscawen, says all five ACT MPs will vote for the bill's first reading and any support after that will be based on the legislation getting select-committee approval.
The Government is putting forward the bill in response to a Supreme Court ruling last week that the use of hidden cameras in the operation that culminated in the 2007 Urewera police raids was illegal.
Police have since suspended covert video surveillance, ...
The Government's decision to extend 90-day new-employee trials to all businesses was a suggestion of Act New Zealand and against the recommendation of its own Labour Minister Kate Wilkinson.
But Cabinet papers - released to The New Zealand Herald under the Official Information Act - show Ms Wilkinson pushed only for the 90-day trial to be extended to companies of up to 50 workers, and did not propose extending it to larger ones as they had "robust systems to undertake good recruitment and employment practices". Act NZ leader Rodney Hide said last night it was his party's idea to extend ...
Act MP Heather Roy has strong feelings about being dumped as deputy leader, but is burying them for the good of the party.Mrs Roy was rolled two weeks ago when the caucus voted in John Boscawen as the new deputy leader. She also lost her ministerial portfolios of consumer affairs, associate education and associate defence.
On Friday on her "Royters" blog, Mrs Roy said she was prepared to put a personally painful experience behind her for the sake of the party.
"I might (okay, I do!) have strong feelings about what happened, but in the real world what I personally feel about the ...
Free Press - 14/06/2016 Insidious Bullying
Last night TV One revealed just how far the teachers’ unions will go in bullying partnership schools. It is shameful. We are all for raising the status of the teaching profession (a stated goal of the unions) but this kind of bullying behaviour is doing more damage to the profession than anyone else.
What did they do?
Stuff has a good summary of the issue here. Basically they stormed into a state school and forced a stop-work meeting, then wrote a menacing legal letter because the school had the temerity to share its chemistry equipment with a partnership school after hours.
The unions are still claiming that partnership schools are better funded than state schools, by comparing partnership schools during their start-up phase with long-established state schools. All schools appear to get more funding per student in their early years, then level out as their rolls grow. An apples-to-apples comparison of partnership school funding ca
Time to close ‘charitable purpose’ tax loophole ACT Leader David Seymour used Question Time today to call on the Government to scrap the ‘charitable purpose’ tax loophole exploited by certain businesses at the expense of others.
“Taxpaying businesses are at a competitive disadvantage due to certain companies’ tax-free status," said Mr Seymour. "This destroys the principle of a competitive marketplace.
“Ngai Tahu businesses like Go Bus and Shotover Jet are tax-exempt due to the iwi’s charitable status. Even church-owned businesses like Sanitarium or Mission Estate Wines are exempt from company tax due to an archaic and outdated British law classing advancement of religion as a charitable purpose.
“While a portion of these companies’ profits may go to charity, they still compete with private businesses and should not be given any unnatural advantage. They can already claim tax back on specific charitable activities, so why do they get a tax loophole for their entire business?
“Let’s support all companies instead
Just get on with congestion charging ACT Leader David Seymour welcomes the government’s about face on congestion charges, with one condition.
“Road tolls shouldn’t be used as a cash grab. Any revenue generated from the tolls should be offset by cuts in petrol tax and, if appropriate, rates,” said Mr Seymour.
“People from Epsom and around Auckland tell me congestion is noticeably worse this year than last. We can’t keep adding cars year after year, New Zealand should be using the latest technology to fight congestion.
“The experience of places like London, Stockholm and Singapore is that congestion charges are fairer, more efficient and better for the environment because they reduce idling in traffic.
“Peak-hour charges are a smart way of managing congestion, just like businesses adjust prices to manage supply and demand. But the Government must avoid mission creep – congestion management should be revenue neutral."
/ Transport / Press Releases
Kiwis working longer, so when will we adjust Super? “It’s baffling that the Government ignores the need for any adjustment of superannuation when Kiwis are working longer than ever,” says ACT Leader David Seymour.
New Zealanders are ranked second in the OECD for their longevity in the workplace, according to PwC's Golden Age Index. The report says one in three New Zealanders will work past the age of 65.
“Kiwis are living longer and demonstrating their potential to make enormous contributions to the economy, but the Government has turned a boon into a boondoggle by locking the age of NZ Super eligibility at 65.
“A long-term increase in the age of eligibility would create a natural incentive for people to work longer. This would create a productivity boost and be fairer on young taxpayers who know they are unlikely to receive superannuation at age 65.
“Parliament could debate the age of eligibility and flexi-super options at any time, if it weren’t for John Key’s 2008 promise not to touch the issue. John Key could relieve