We had a great turnout in Whitianga and Thames for my regular community meetings. It was terrific to catch up with everyone who attended and to hear your thoughts on local and national issues.
People were rightly concerned about the level of centralisation we are seeing from this Government. The changes that are taking place in education, health and local government are removing the decision making process from local communities. We’ve had centralised systems before; they didn’t work then and they won’t work now.
I really appreciated the chance to have some robust discussions with everyone that attended.
Paeroa Fire Brigade
Great to spend time with the Paeroa Fire Brigade as they awarded Ross Paul his Gold Star for 25 years of service. This award was meant to be given to Ross last year, but Covid restrictions delayed the presentation. It takes a special type of person to run toward danger and to keep a calm under immense pressure. To volunteer this service for more than two decades is truly remarkable.
A couple of weeks ago the Government announced its Budget which sees benefits rise, but no pathway to growing the economy. I acknowledge that those on low-incomes need increased support, but Labour is merely patching up a problem they’ve created. People from all walks of life are doing it tougher than they were a few years ago. Rents are up, homeownership is seemingly out of reach for an entire generation, and the daily costs of living, such as rent and petrol, have increased.
This Budget was a chance to outline a pathway for the future and inspire hope for the post-Covid world, but it has left many feeling unfulfilled.
There is more to being in government than just slicing the pie differently. The answer to greater total prosperity for all New Zealanders is to have a plan and aspiration to make a bigger pie. In my view this Labour government has neither the plan nor the aspiration required.
To contact to me or my office, please don't hesitate to call 0800 550 330.