We've been busy! Have a look at just five things we've been working on this week to make New Zealand a better place...
We're putting the free back into free education
It’s not fair that an NCEA fee would stand between you and moving forward in life. This week, we announced that we're wiping unpaid NCEA fees, which will mean nearly 150,000 students with unpaid fees will get their credits and qualifications. You put in the hard work, and you earned it.
We're making it cheaper to buy a clean car
Choosing a car shouldn't have to be a choice between an affordable vehicle or one that's good for the planet. We're proposing two new ways to help make electric vehicles, hybrids, and fuel-efficient cars cheaper, so we can help the planet, and save our back pocket.
The Clean Car Standard and Clean Car Discount would help reduce the more than 5 million tonnes of dangerous climate pollution going into our atmosphere, and will save Kiwis thousands of dollars.
Discounts will go up to $8,000 on electric vehicles, hybrids and fuel efficient cars, including many our most popular cars.
What’s more, the Clean Car Standard is expected to save Kiwis $6,800 in petrol costs!*
*the expected average fuel savings for New Zealanders over the lifetime of a clean car. Source: Ministry of Transport.
We're backing new Kiwi businesses to research and innovate
Kiwis are known for our no. 8 wire mentality. We want New Zealand to be a place of opportunity, where the best thinkers can get ahead.
A whole lot of new Zealand companies investing in research and development don’t make money right away - which in the past has meant they don't get access to extra funding for Research & Development.
We're extending R&D funding to new businesses - so we can give Kiwi innovators the best possible start so they can get out in front of their global competitors.
It's just one way we're making sure our businesses and economy are leading the way in the 21st century and beyond.
We're restoring fairness and dignity for family carers
We've heard loud and clear from families with disabled members about the need to change Funded Family Care. That's why we've restored payments for parents and partners of disabled people with high or very high needs.
This is about addressing the needs of stretched parents and partners, families and whānau who provide this important and sometimes challenging care for their loved ones.
Pay rates for family carers will also increase from the current minimum wage to a fairer pay equity rate of between $20.50 and $25.50
We're fixing our hospitals and run-down health facilities
After nine years of neglect, we’re rebuilding our health system. It won't happen overnight, but we're getting it done.
The Government has decided to directly fund DHBs for their capital charge costs for new facilities. For example, a DHB could receive up to $18 million annually to cover the capital charge related to a new $300 million hospital building.
District Health Boards will get financial help for major new building projects, which will reduce some of the immediate cost pressures for DHBs and provide more stability for the future.