Government puts House in urgency over fuel tax bill

This may be largely unnoticed as most attention is on Trump’s immigration fiasco and New Zealand media will likely be obsessed with a maternity hospital in Auckland.

URGENCY

Hon CHRIS HIPKINS (Leader of the House): I move, That urgency be accorded to the committee stage and third reading of the Land Transport Management (Regional Fuel Tax) Amendment Bill and to the committee stage and third reading of the Taxation (Neutralising Base Erosion and Profit Shifting) Bill. McGee says that “the use of urgency is expected to be confined to situations where an urgent approach is genuinely needed.” The passing of these two bills meets this criteria quite comfortably. The passing of the Land Transport Management (Regional Fuel Tax) Amendment Bill this week is essential so that the Order in Council in clause 5 under new section 65K of the Land Transport Management Act can be made in time to establish the Auckland regional fuel tax scheme from 1 July, as scheduled. A late delay in the start date would make that very difficult, if not impossible.

The Taxation (Neutralising Base Erosion and Profit Shifting) Bill must be assented by the end of this month to allow the commencement of most of its provisions on 1 July to apply in the income year that begins on that day. Any delay could create serious compliance issues for the IRD and for taxpayers. The bill has been supported by all parties at its first and second reading.

The scheduling of the remaining stages of these two bills this week was notified to all parties last Thursday, so there are no particular surprises here. The use of urgency today will prevent the disruption of the third readings of the Treaty settlement bills that are planned tomorrow and next Thursday, and it will stop the Government having to interrupt members’ day next Wednesday, which is an undertaking that I have given to members opposite—that we would avoid interrupting members’ days wherever possible.

Urgency will be used very rarely by this Government, as we showed last month when we became the first Government not to seek post-Budget urgency, and therefore I ask the House to support the motion.

  • [Party Vote—Ayes 63, Noes 55]

    Motion agreed to.

Scoop:  House goes into Urgency over tax bills

The Government moved to put the House into Urgency tonight after making slow progress on the committee stage of the Land Transport Management (Regional Fuel Tax) Amendment Bill.

The unusual step was taken to end the debate by reporting progress and then immediately afterwards the Leader of the House Chris Hipkins put the Urgency motion to complete all stages of the fuel tax bill and the Taxation (Neutralising Base Erosion and Profit Shifting) Bill.

Hipkins said Urgency was required as the two bills had to be enacted by July 1 and it would mean less disruption to the rest of the House’s sitting programme.

One could ask why the Government has left themselves with so little time to get these bills through in time.

National MPs disagreed saying Urgency was being given without notice due to the Government losing control of its parliamentary agenda.

National MP Jami-Lee Ross then put forward a motion that “it be an instruction to the Committee of the whole House on the Land Transport Management (Regional Fuel Tax) Amendment Bill that all members wishing to speak that have already spoken in Part 2 have the ability to have a full four calls reset to zero so each member is able to restart their speaking number”. This in effect would have extended the debate by some time.

Hipkins then moved an amendment to the motion that “the motion be amended to delete all the words after “That” and replace them with “That it be an instruction to the committee that the remaining questions on the Land Transport Management (Regional Fuel Tax) Amendment Bill be put without further debate”.

Debate will resume in Parliament at 9 am this morning.

The fuel tax was originally intended to help Auckland with it’s urgent need for more money for transport infrastructure, but it could spread around the country.

Newshub – Revealed: The number of councils considering a fuel tax

Newshub can reveal at least 14 councils across the country have discussed the possibility of implementing a regional fuel tax.

This time next month, Aucklanders will be paying an additional 11.5 cents a litre for their fuel through the regional fuel tax – and it seems other councils want in on the action.

In response to a number of local government Official Information and Meetings Act requests, numerous councils across the nation admitted they were considering a fuel tax.

Those councils are:

  • Christchurch City Council
  • Rangitikei District Council
  • Bay of Plenty Regional Council
  • Thames Coromandel District Council
  • Tauranga City Council
  • Gisborne District Council
  • Greater Wellington Regional Council
  • Hamilton City Council
  • Western Bay of Plenty
  • Waikato Regional Council
  • Waikato District Council
  • Westland District Council
  • Environment Canterbury
  • Hurunui District Council

Another eight lower North Island councils had discussed the policy at a Mayoral Forum.

The law is currently making its way through Parliament – and while it was drafted to address Auckland congestion, the legislation doesn’t specify that the tax should only be applied in the super city.

 

 

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26 Comments

  1. Alan Wilkinson

     /  June 21, 2018

    Tax and spend continues inevitably.

    Reply
  2. PDB

     /  June 21, 2018

    The ‘no-idea’ govt shows how truly inept they are – fuel cost has already increased throughout the country due in part to the Auckland regional fuel tax announcement so if other councils do implement regional fuel taxes people will be hit again in those areas.

    From the article;

    “Mr Robertson also admitted the Government had not done any analysis on the economic impact of councils outside Auckland implementing the tax.”

    Reply
  3. Gerrit

     /  June 21, 2018

    And thus the inflationary spiral starts.

    Reply
    • PartisanZ

       /  June 21, 2018

      The inflationary spiral never stopped … It was merely suppressed and viciously – though sold like snake-oil as kind of “economic cleansing” – at the expense of human beings …

      Reply
    • Blazer

       /  June 21, 2018

      what fantasy land do you live in…rampant inflation since 2008 is all around you.!

      Reply
      • High Flying Duck

         /  June 21, 2018

        Other than housing I have found most things have been steady or cheaper. for many years.

        Reply
        • Blazer

           /  June 21, 2018

          try vegetables.Root vegetables…even.

          Reply
          • PartisanZ

             /  June 21, 2018

            Yes, interesting isn’t it … Seems to me many basic foodstuffs where human labour has been replaced by mechanisation have also increased in price …?

            “Other than housing” … OMG, joke of the day!

            Reply
            • High Flying Duck

               /  June 21, 2018

              The housing caveat was in relation to Blazer’s “inflation is all around you” comment suggesting it is widespread.

          • High Flying Duck

             /  June 21, 2018

            Vegetables have fluctuated depending on the weather, between very cheap and very expensive. Nothing overly inflationary in there.

            Reply
            • Blazer

               /  June 21, 2018

              what about the price of meat…and butter?

          • Gerrit

             /  June 21, 2018

            Meat and butter we pay the export price. Overseas buyers push their price down due to volume.

            What is worrying is that the New Zealand exporter pays the freight for exporting meat. That cost is borne by New Zealand buyers if exporters price the freight cost into local deliveries and not from their bottom lines.

            Worth a read

            https://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10657940

            “Chemaly said New Zealand consumers were paying export prices for lamb, which supermarket companies had to purchase at.

            Prices for British consumers could be kept at a reasonable cost simply because of market size. “The UK will have more purchasing power to negotiate lower rates due to the scale of its economy,” he said.

            Progressive Enterprises spokesman Brett Ashley, said lamb numbers were down 7 per cent compared to last season.

            Exporters were also able to negotiate better buying prices by purchasing entire flocks from farmers. The cost of transporting lamb to the UK is met by the New Zealand exporter .

            Reply
            • Blazer

               /  June 21, 2018

              so what you are saying is a transport levy is put on NZ consumers to the benefit of U.K …consumers.
              Some free market.

  4. David

     /  June 21, 2018

    And this is unconnected to the birth. All the ranting about National going into urgency geez these guys are shocking…worst government ever.

    Reply
  5. Zedd

     /  June 21, 2018

    I see Natl up to their silly tricks again.. first it was about 6k inane questions in first week… now its inane SOPs on this bill.. I just heard from ‘Mr Spkr’ that many are to be ruled ‘out of order’ 😀

    They need to be reminded, how much $ it cost the public for their TIME-WASTING practices !

    Reply
    • PDB

       /  June 21, 2018

      Lets see what Helen’s partner Peter Davis had to say about the matter;

      Reply
      • Gezza

         /  June 21, 2018

        They’ll have to go 😡

        Who else have we got? 😳

        Reply
      • Blazer

         /  June 21, 2018

        quite funny really…no one could care less about his opinion before.
        Not forgetting former National P.M Jim Bolgers views are now totally…disowned.

        Reply
  6. PartisanZ

     /  June 21, 2018

    Our funny South Seas derivation of Westminster Parliamentary so-called ‘democracy’ has a limited number of mechanisms available …. Why wouldn’t any government-on-behalf use them?

    So, they lied? Geee, what’s new? Remember “no increase in GST”?

    It’s the political-elites more than corporate-capitalists pushing this regional fuel tax … but who reckons corporate-capitalist elites are against it?

    It’s gonna pay for construction of infrastructure … by corporate-capitalist elites …

    Reply
  7. Blazer

     /  June 21, 2018

    National filibusting ,very tedious and the Govt have given ample time to debate the bill.
    Heard trade spokesman McClay trying to critique the discussions on an Eu trade deal this morning.NFI.
    Opposition for the sake of opposition.Poor show Nats.

    Reply
  8. Zedd

     /  June 21, 2018

    Ive heard some comments.. from Natl MPs.. about why this Govt. are using ‘urgency’.. it would be interesting to see the stats on how many times they used it, over 9 loooooong years !?

    Reply
  9. I hate urgency procedures, they both abuse, I feel that urgency should only be used with royal assent, such as Governer general sign off, so that it is maintained for true emergencies. or perhaps a quick super majority vote in govt to ensure that it is depolarized, war, natural disasters etc are urgent, a new tax is not….

    Reply
  10. Gezza

     /  June 21, 2018

    Screw this government’s free for all on their extra taxes & screw the Greater Wellington Regional Council as well.

    Reply
  11. Zedd

     /  June 21, 2018

    I just watched ‘the speaker being recalled’ in the committee stage; natl tried insert a whole new part. It was mentioned by the Govt. that under the last Govt. this had been ruled out & was also upheld by SO comm. Mallard agreed & said the amendments should be ‘added to part 2 & not accepted as a new part 3’.

    btw; the Natl SOPs were all voted down.. maybe they should reflect on their ‘actions’ in Govt. rather than whinge about it.. being treated the same ?! 😀

    Reply
    • PDB

       /  June 21, 2018

      They are too busy laughing at the Labour party who not only did the very same thing in opposition but also earlier this year had to filibuster their very own legislation in order to slow its progress as they weren’t ready for it – hilarious!

      Reply

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