Releases -

By Newsroom America Feeds at 9 Jun 2017

Latest Releases

/////////////////////////////////////////// First train arrives in Kaikoura after November quake

Posted: 08 Jun 2017 08:45 PM PDT

Simon Bridges | Transport

The first work train to reach Kaikoura on the Main North Line following Novembers devastating earthquake arrived today, marking a significant milestone for the rebuild project, Transport Minister Simon Bridges says.

The work train, travelling north from Oaro, is the first to reach Kaikoura from the south.

"The trains arrival demonstrates the progress that KiwiRail is making to restore this vital part of New Zealands freight network," Mr Bridges says.

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/////////////////////////////////////////// Budget 2017: Supporting Māori language and kura management

Posted: 08 Jun 2017 08:14 PM PDT

Nikki Kaye | Budget 2017

Education Minister Nikki Kaye has provided more detail about Budget 2017 funding for Māori language and kura management. $7.6 million over four years is being invested in Māori language in education curriculum resources, alongside $1.7 million to continue supporting the Boards of Trustees of Māori medium schools. During a visit to Roscommon School in Auckland with Prime Minister Bill English, Minister Kaye discussed what the funding will provide.

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/////////////////////////////////////////// Veterans starting to seek out services

Posted: 08 Jun 2017 07:31 PM PDT

David Bennett | Veterans’ Affairs

There has been a 33 per cent increase in uptake of Veterans Independence Programmes (VIP) over the past year, Veterans Affairs Minister David Bennett says. The VIP enables New Zealand veterans to live independently in their homes It can help with the cost of house and window cleaning, lawn mowing and garden maintenance, home care, medical alarms, podiatry and home alterations. "Veterans fought for New Zealands independence and now the country can assist in providing for their independence," Mr Bennett says.

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/////////////////////////////////////////// Deed of Reconciliation signed with Parihaka

Posted: 08 Jun 2017 07:28 PM PDT

Christopher Finlayson | Attorney-General

The Crown has signed a Deed of Reconciliation with the Parihaka community in a ceremony held at Parihaka, Attorney-General Christopher Finlayson announced today. "In the second half of the 19th century, the Crown devastated Parihaka which at the time was the largest community in Taranaki and a centre for peaceful protest. "It is important the Crown apologise directly to the people of Parihaka for the actions it committed almost 140 years ago so we can begin to look forward to a new era of collaboration."

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/////////////////////////////////////////// No UN-ordered investigation into Afghan raid

Posted: 08 Jun 2017 07:09 PM PDT

Gerry Brownlee | Foreign Affairs

Contrary to an inaccurate Amnesty International press release and subsequent media reports, the New Zealand government has not been ordered to investigate the allegations made in the book Hit & Run, Foreign Minister Gerry Brownlee says. The Government has received a list of issues from the United Nations Committee Against Torture as part of a routine reporting process. "Were one of 161 parties to the Convention Against Torture to receive such a list and we have two years to respond to this seventh periodic report," Mr Brownlee says.

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/////////////////////////////////////////// Extra support for Bay of Plenty farmers

Posted: 08 Jun 2017 05:40 PM PDT

Anne Tolley | Primary Industries

The Government has today announced extra grants to help Bay of Plenty farmers and growers impacted by Aprils storms and floods. Affected farmers and growers can apply for contributions from the new $200,000 Primary Industries Bay of Plenty Flood Recovery Grant to help with essential infrastructure repair as they continue to get their businesses up and running.

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/////////////////////////////////////////// $9.8m skills & research centre for Waitemata DHB

Posted: 08 Jun 2017 05:30 PM PDT

Jonathan Coleman | Health

Health Minister Jonathan Coleman has today opened Waitemata DHBs $9.84 million Whenua Pupuke Clinical Skills and Research Centre at North Shore Hospital. "The new facility will allow Waitemata DHB to support the continued training of staff and encourage research which will ensure the provisions of a world class health service," says Dr Coleman.

... read more This posting includes a media file: Pupuke opening.JPG

/////////////////////////////////////////// New targets focus on giving kids the best start

Posted: 08 Jun 2017 05:00 PM PDT

Jonathan Coleman | Health

Health Minister Jonathan Coleman says the refreshed Better Public Services targets will help ensure young New Zealanders get the best start to life and that were better prepared to act before kids end up in hospital. "Healthy pregnancy and a safe birth are foundations for a good start to life," says Dr Coleman. "With this in mind, the new health-led results and targets have a strong focus on improving outcomes for pregnant women and babies, and supporting kids to have a healthy childhood."

... read more

/////////////////////////////////////////// $260,000 for nationwide litter review

Posted: 08 Jun 2017 04:57 PM PDT

Scott Simpson | Environment

An independent review of public litter and littering interventions in New Zealand will be undertaken by the Sustainable Coastlines Charitable Trust, Associate Environment Minister Scott Simpson announced today.

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/////////////////////////////////////////// Racecourses harnessing safety with funding

Posted: 08 Jun 2017 03:31 PM PDT

David Bennett | Racing

An upgrade to Dunedins racecourse ambulance track is amongst the 19 projects the Government has recently contributed towards in racecourse safety, Racing Minister David Bennett announced today. The various projects, which spanned from Whangarei to Roxburgh, received $313,055 in grants towards improving racecourse safety from the Racing Safety Development Fund. Projects across New Zealand included track resurfacing, equine pool upgrades, and building construction to help make racecourses safer.

... read more This posting includes a media file: APPLICATIONS ROUND 2.pdf

/////////////////////////////////////////// Roadshow to support Chinese community

Posted: 08 Jun 2017 03:29 PM PDT

Jacqui Dean | Small Business

Small Business Minister Jacqui Dean is looking forward to meeting with Chinese owned small businesses when the Small Business Roadshow travels to Auckland on 15 June. "The Small Business Roadshow has been travelling New Zealand, connecting small businesses with government services," Ms Dean says. "There are a lot of government services that businesses can tap into and sometimes they are hard to navigate. Our aim is to increase understanding of what is available and give small businesses every opportunity to thrive and grow.

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/////////////////////////////////////////// 15 indicators to help monitor childhood obesity

Posted: 08 Jun 2017 02:54 PM PDT

Jonathan Coleman | Health

Health Minister Jonathan Coleman says a set of indicators will be published annually to help monitor the progress being made to reduce childhood obesity in New Zealand. "Obesity is a serious issue threatening the health of young New Zealanders, which means some of our kids could end up living shorter lives than their parents," says Dr Coleman. "In 2014/15 11 per cent of all children aged 2-14 years were obese. The figures for Maori and Pacific children were 15 per cent and 30 per cent respectively.

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/////////////////////////////////////////// Minister welcomes DTI consultation

Posted: 08 Jun 2017 09:00 AM PDT

Steven Joyce | Finance

Finance Minister Steven Joyce has today welcomed the release of the Reserve Banks consultation document on the use of Debt to Income ratios for mortgage borrowers as an additional macro-prudential tool. "The document is a comprehensive summary of the pros and cons of adding Debt to Income ratios to the Reserve Banks toolkit of regulatory options," Mr Joyce says.

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/////////////////////////////////////////// New services group to enhance trade opportunity

Posted: 08 Jun 2017 02:33 AM PDT

Todd McClay | Trade

Trade Minister Todd McClay has announced the establishment of the Services Export Reference Group at a press conference to launch an OECD study in Paris today highlighting the significant opportunity services exports offer the New Zealand economy. "Services account for 70 per cent of our GDP, 80 per cent of New Zealand jobs and 31 per cent of our exports," Mr McClay says. "It is therefore imperative that we work closely with the services sector to bring down barriers and help them find greater success in overseas markets."

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/////////////////////////////////////////// Stream restoration takes top Green Ribbon

Posted: 08 Jun 2017 01:59 AM PDT

Nick Smith | Conservation

A highly successful Hawkes Bay stream restoration project has taken out the top prize at the 2017 Green Ribbon Awards, announced tonight by Environment Minister Dr Nick Smith and Associate Conservation Minister Nicky Wagner. "My congratulations to the Whangawehi Catchment Management Group for winning the 2017 Supreme Green Ribbon Award. This team effort over seven years involving iwi, councils and landowners has achieved significant improvements in water quality in the Whangawehi River and in protecting native plants and animals," Dr Smith says.

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/////////////////////////////////////////// $2 billion pay equity settlement bill for 55,000 health care workers passes into law

Posted: 07 Jun 2017 10:48 PM PDT

Jonathan Coleman | Health

Health Minister Jonathan Coleman says a bill to implement a historic pay equity settlement for 55,000 of the health sectors lowest paid workers passed into law today with unanimous support from across the House. The Care and Support Worker (Pay Equity) Settlement Bill was fast-tracked through Parliament to ensure providers of aged and disability residential care, and home and community support services pass on the new wage rates to their workers from 1 July.

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/////////////////////////////////////////// Objection to anti-nuclear motion disappointing

Posted: 07 Jun 2017 06:30 PM PDT

Gerry Brownlee | Foreign Affairs

Foreign Minister Gerry Brownlee says its a shame the Green Party has chosen to play petty politics over todays motion in Parliament to mark the 30th anniversary of New Zealands nuclear free legislation. "The Green Partys insistence that the motion include reference to ongoing United Nations negotiations for a Convention on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons is unfortunate," Mr Brownlee says. "The Convention is a matter for another day but today was about marking an important anniversary for New Zealand.

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