Referendum

Should John Key get a new flag…or help the people of Vanuatu? #cyclonepam

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Forget Northland, forget our so-called child poverty issue, and forget a referendum to change flag no one wants changed…the people of Vanuatu are in desperate need.

It is reported that the flag referendum and subsequent change would cost something in the region of $35 million.

Vanuatu has been smashed by Cyclone Pam, what little they did have is now spread all over the Pacific.

Cyclone Pam is one of the worst storms to have ever hit a populated area and the devastation will take years to recover.

Does John Key really need a new flag, or would the money be better spent aiding our Pacific neighbours in their time of need?   Read more »

Citizens fight back in New Plymouth against ratbag mayor

Politicians love to spend other peoples money and push their own agendas.

The idiot running the New Plymouth City Council wants to force maori representation on his ratepayers. And his idiot council voted to implement it.

But someone took exception and forced a referendum on the issue.

New Plymouth is to spend about $80,000 to conduct a poll over whether Maori should have an automatic right to a council seat.

The district council this week validated a petition calling for a binding citizens-initiated referendum on the establishment of a Maori ward and a ballot will be held in May.

Last year, the council voted 7-to-6 to establish a Maori ward at the local government elections in 2016.   Read more »

ACT want to be hip, cool, groovy and with it

The ACT Party says they’re getting rid of their tired old grumpies in favour of a bright and breezy future.

“Maybe we should be handing out a bit more dye like they do in the National Party,” [David Seymour] joked.

And while a youthful band valiantly tried to up the tempo, grey locks easily outnumbered wrinkle-free faces at the annual conference.

Political commentator David Farrar had predicted the party’s demise, declaring ACT clinically dead three years ago.

“The fact they actually got through when you consider everything they’ve had in the past in the way of scandals, you know I was totally wrong,” said Farrar.

Wrongly David Wrongson also didn’t get much right.  Of course, ACT has died.  It’s on life support via Epsom.   Let’s be real here – Kim Dotcom, Laila Harre and Hone Harewira got more votes for their sideshow than ACT did.  Helps to remember that, you know, as a reality check.   Read more »

Now ACT want a referendum

What is it with referendums?  Colin Craig wants to run the country by them, John Key wants to change the flag, and now ACT want a non-binding waste of taxpayers’ money for one as well.

The ACT party is calling for a referendum on whether the retirement age should be increased.

Leader David Seymour told the party’s annual conference it wasn’t tenable to keep paying out super payments from the age of 65.

ACT received less than 1% of the party vote in last year’s election.

ACT Leader David Seymour closed his speech to the party’s annual conference by challenging political leaders to support a referendum process to determine the future of New Zealand’s superannuation system.

“If the public can vote on the New Zealand flag, a matter that is largely symbolic, why not follow the same process for another intractable problem, one that politicians have been dodging for decades.

It is actually an occasion where a referendum may make sense.  No political party is likely to push the retirement age up, in spite of it being sensible to do so as we become healthier and live longer.  Labour tried to run on such a policy last time and was caned for it.  A referendum would take the decision away from any political party and it can then be implemented as the ‘people’s will’.

If they have such a will, of course.   Read more »

Time for a recall option

The Taxpayers’ Union has called for the implementation of a recall option for local body politics.

The Taxpayers’ Union is calling on the Government to give local communities the ability to petition for recall elections, after Len Brown’s latest snub to ratepayers has hit the headlines. The Herald on Sunday is reporting that Len Brown has had a private bathroom and dressing room installed behind a bookshelf in the Mayor’s office. The secret rooms have cost ratepayers $30,000.

The Union’s Executive Director, Jordan Williams, says:

“A secret dressing room, complete with a two seater couch, is a luxury lair, not value for money for ratepayers.”

“Councillors have already censured Len Brown for misusing funds but clearly the line in the sand is being ignored. Mr Brown’s refusal to talk to media says a lot about his respect for ratepayers and his fellow councillors.”

“It’s time the Government gave ratepayers a voice between elections. A recall option would enable ratepayers to petition for a vote to fire a shameless politicians who lacks any respect for those who pay the bills.”

Read more »

Oh well done Len. Well done. 2.5%, then 3.5%, and now up to 40% and more

Auckland Council are determined to get everyone paying exactly what the formula says they should pay, no matter how much this will increase rates.  Check this out.

The cap which has protected some Auckland homeowners from up to 40 per cent rates rises has been voted down…

Auckland Council’s Governing Body today argued its way through its 10-year budget, known as the Long-term Plan 2015-25.

Among a series of major decisions it has removed the rates cap, refused a referendum on its controversial plans to pay for expensive transport projects and made changes to how it charges property developers.

The vote to scrap the rates cap was tight – 11 votes to 10.

Since the eight old Auckland councils amalgamated into the super city, the new council has been trying to align the rates it charges.

It has meant some homeowners have had decreases in their rates, but others have faced steep increases.

In an effort to give some relief to the pain of those homeowners in line for big increases, the council operated a policy called “rates transition” – capping the extent of rates rises each year to a maximum of 10 per cent.

But today the cap went  – all ratepayers who own similar value properties will pay the same rates no matter where in Auckland they live. And no matter how big the rates rise.

It has been reported that some will now face a massive household rates increases of 40 per cent or more next year.

This is after Len promised 2.5% rises.

And then he said, sorry, but, erm… 3.5%, ok?

And now this.     Read more »

Why BCIR is a dumb idea

Andrew Geddis can’t type my name, but I can not only type his and use it in a post but also link to his very good explanation of the ill-conceived idiocy of the cult of Colin Craig regarding binding citizen initiated referenda.

Colin Craig has just one thing he wants from National in any post-election deal. Unfortunately, it’s something that National isn’t able to give him.

[…]

the Conservative Party’s announcement of their “bottom line” policy demand before supporting National post-election strikes me as a major disincentive to National ushering them into the House. As the NZ Herald reports Craig:

“The thing that we want, that will be required if a party wants our support, is that they are going to need to agree to a change whereby that the people of this country have the right on those rare occasions … to tell the government where to go and what to do.”

He later told reporters it may not be enough for National to step aside and give him an uncontested race in the East Coast Bays seat, where he is a candidate.

“We’d want to see referendum get across the line, that’s the one thing that matters for us.”

Conservatives would not go into coalition or enter a confidence and supply agreement unless this condition was met.

Mr Craig said: “We’re not going to be unconstructive, but in terms of getting our full support, that is our bottom line. That is what we want to achieve.”

Let’s pay Craig and his party the courtesy of accepting that they really, really mean what they say on this matter. Unless National give them this policy outcome, they won’t give any guarantee of support for it in office. The problem they face is that there is no way that National on its own (or even in conjunction with the Conservatives) can deliver what they are demanding.

Why can’t BCIR be delivered as the Cult of Colin Craig demands?

there is no doubting that adopting such a measure would represent a fundamental change to the entire constitutional order of New Zealand. And fundamental constitutional changes shouldn’t be made by bare-majority governments on a straight party line vote. It’s constitutionally improper to even suggest that this happen – it would be like the Maori Party saying that their price for supporting a Government would be for that Government to legislate via a bare parliamentary majority to make the Treaty of Waitangi a “higher law” constitutional document that could be used to strike down other laws. I don’t care whether you think that would be a good outcome; it would be a bad way to bring it about.

Now, maybe Craig doesn’t mean that he wants National (with his Party’s help) to bring in binding referendums directly. Maybe he wants the issue itself to be put to a referendum, so that the people of New Zealand can decide for themselves whether or not to make the change. If that is what he means, then he really should say so. Because what he’s calling for at the moment – a fundamental constitutional change carried out by a bare majority in Parliament – is improper, and I just don’t think National should for one minute think about agreeing to do it.

Read more »

It’s called a cheque Colin, and stuff all people use them these days

This is a quote from Colin Craig:

“I couldn’t even buy stationary at the shop this morning, without giving the man behind the counter a signed autograph.”

A signed autograph? Really? You autographed an autograph? Was it your dad?

The man is a complete muppet.

Stupidly he is also going toe to toe with Winston Peters, who is loving the attention and promising crazy policies like BCIR.

If National wants Conservative Party support it will have to make referendums binding, says the party’s leader Colin Craig.

He’s used his keynote speech at the party’s annual conference this weekend to highlight the party’s policy as a “bottom line” for any coalition negotiations.

Speaking to about 120 of the party’s rank and file, Craig said National was running a “nanny state”, that had grown “too big and too proud”.

“It’s time the government was smaller, it’s time the government was more efficient and it’s time the government was beholden to the people who voted them in.   Read more »

Don’t believe everything you read in the Herald

Astonishing really…wrong in the heading, wrong in the stand first…

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The actual number of votes addd tot he count is more like 35,000…the body of the article explains.

Of the additional votes counted, 24,866 were against the asset sales while 10,035 were in favour.

The final result is that 920,188 or 67.3 per cent of votes cast were against the programme while 442,985 or 32.4 per cent were in favour.

A check of the Electoral Commission website for the preliminary results vs the Final results shows it is about 35,000.

Simple stuff really.

Dompost on Asset Sales Referendum

The Dompost is somewhat emphatic in their mockery of the Greens and Labour.

To listen to Labour and the Greens one would think the Government had no choice but to begin buying back state assets following the referendum on state asset sales.

According to Labour leader David Cunliffe the people “clamoured” to have their voices heard and they have “spoken” against the partial sales of Mighty River Power, Meridian Energy and Air New Zealand.

According to Green party co-leader Russel Norman the referendum has shown the prime minister is out of touch with mainstream New Zealand.

There is only one problem for Mr Cunliffe and Dr Norman. The referendum on state asset sales was not the first held under the Citizens Initiated Referenda Act 1993. It was the fifth.   Read more »