Questions for the PSA Union – by The Owl

The PSA is about to grill the Minister of Finance on changes in the PSA workforce and government workers environment at a conference on Tuesday. A clear message to the Minister will be given.

Back up the bus here…..government workers are exactly that – they deliver the services of the government of the day – The Owl accepts fair pay, good employer relationships and that delivery of core services is important. Public Service people do a good job and we need public servants.

Here is the rub.

This union is funded by the tax payer via deductions from their state derived pay – their 2011 Balance Sheet shows $25M worth of net assets and $5M worth of holiday homes.

Their wage bill is $9.997M and super contribution of nearly $600k. They spent $2.2M on meetings and travel.

And what does the PSA stand for – (direct from their website)

The PSA – New Zealand’s public sector union

The PSA – the Public Service Association/Te Pukenga Here Tikanga Mahi –is New Zealand’s largest union, representing 58,000 workers in central government, state-owned enterprises, local councils, health boards and community groups. Arguing for policies that improve public services and the working conditions of those who deliver them, we are a powerful public voice and a key player in New Zealand politics.


The PSA’s objective is to build a union organisation able to influence the political, economic, industrial and social environments in the interests of the membership of the PSA.

The Owl is pretty gutted about Solid Energy – I think there is a solution to finding the $30M needed to save the coal industry. As their website says “state owned enterprise” which means there are members who are policy advisors about State Owned Enterprises.

So if we add the assets of the PSA and the EMPU – that totals $35M – job done


Why is the Public Service Union goal to be a key player in NZ politics?

Shouldn’t the EPMU being talking to the PSA about their policy advice to State Owned Enterprises?

Does the Owl just keep missing the point and retire?


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  • johnbronkhorst

    A friend worked for the public trust….she kept telling me how under paid for the work they were…..Except when she applied for jobs outside the Public Service (misnomer), they were ALL paying about 10-20% less, for the same work. Yet they believe they are paid less than the private sector………..deluded aren’t they!!!

    • Neil

      It didn’t work that way when I left in the 80’s – went up by $15K which if directly correlated to todays dollars is no small amount. What it does show me is the delusion of those in the public SERVICE today that times are tight and they’re on the pigs back getting paid by the taxpayer, and not competing with any other employer in the job market to get a pay rise.

      • Guest2

        Do you here the greens moan about the closures and lay offs no!!!!!!! West coasters ring your green mp and ask them to help you out…where are the greens!!!!!!

        • guest2

          The greens have just voted against labour and the government in parliament right now on tv for a reserve and park to be created in Wellington which will provide open spaces and to honor our soldiers..unbelievable … That is what you get when your leader is a communist and one of the green speakers had a foreign accent MP Genter.
          No mining and now the greens impregnated with foreigners won’t let us build parks and monuments. FFS. This green party has no policies and has no idea of forming any economic policies.

          • pukakidon

            If it had of been a monument to Joseph Stalin. The Greens would be all for it.

      • Dave

        Neil, if that was really the case, all the workers would leave for those higher paying jobs in the private sector. Economics 101 Er, if they could actually get jobs in the private sector.

        • owl

          There are 131 staff in the union earning $81,000.00 On average plus travel etc. They are a very hard done by bunch. Richard wagstaff is on the executive who is also on the NZCTU

  • John Q Public

    The price of coal increasing is the only thing that will save the coal industry matey.

  • blokeintakapuna

    Yep – the unions could sell their multi-million dollar assets to buy the mines to keep all their members employed. They could then employ school leavers on $15/hr or more even…
    The redundant mine workers (as already suggested by another commentator) should go to the nearest Green Party electorate office and demand to know why their families livlihoods are being placed at risk because the Greens don’t want any form of mining and have successfully culled all resource / mining developments in NZ – making the mining sector unprofitable and unsustainable.
    Blame the Greens for stalling development projects – that’s who robbed you of your jobs and NZ Inc of the community and individual wealth these projects bring in.
    The left needs to learn – NZ Inc can’t have sustainable resource and mining jobs if they throw spanners into the workings to protect a few snails. Miners should ask the Green MP’s “What or who has priority?”