New Zealand Labour Party

Govt must come clean on tax cuts in Budget

National is making a mockery of the Budget process by dangling the promise of tax cuts but failing to include them in the Budget, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson.

“National’s tax cut promises have turned into a farce. One day Bill English says they’re off, the next day John Key says they’re on. They need to come clean, otherwise, as Westpac economist Dominick Stephens says, they will make the government accounts obsolete and irrelevant.

“In 2014 the Government campaigned on lower taxes but failed to deliver. New Zealanders won’t be taken for fools again next election campaign.

"If National really thinks tax cuts are a priority they should deliver a fully-costed tax package in the Budget. If the Government can’t do that, they should take cuts off the table and stop the charade. Dangling tax cut promises about in an election campaign is irresponsible and disingenuous.

“We must be clear. As a country we are not in a position to offer tax cuts when there are families living in cars and garages. It will take a lot longer than a one-year funding boost to fix the problems built over seven years in health, education and housing.

“The Prime Minister’s vague promise of $3b in tax cuts beg a serious question: where is the money coming from? We simply can’t afford it. That revenue needs to be put into core services and to invest in infrastructure to ensure it keeps up with record population growth and the growing needs in our community,” says Grant Robertson.