Nation: Shane Jones on Provincial Growth Fund spending

NZ Herald:  Shane Jones announces suite of regional funding worth more than $80m

More than $80 million from the $3 billion Provincial Growth Fund will boost rural broadband, expand a driver-training centre near Fielding, and look into building a new freight hub near Palmerston North.

Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones was in the Manawatū-Whanganui today to announce a number of new initiatives, most of which are for Manawatū-Whanganui region.

About half of the funding – $40m – will be used for a new regional freight hub near Palmerston North, a key staging point for domestic, imported and exported freight in the Lower North Island.

Jones also announced funding across the food and beverage, digital connectivity and tourism sectors in the Manawatū-Whanganui region, including:

• $2.8m to expand the National Driver Training Centre based at Manfeild, near Feilding, to train 700 drivers and machine operators annually
• A $400,000 investment to fund the first stage of an Advanced Aviation Hub at Whanganui Airport
• $100,000 to investigate FoodHQs development to assist food exporters
• $100,000 to assess alternative land utilisation choices in the Tararua District
• $98,000 towards Kaitahi Food & Innovation Factory
• $95,000 towards establishing an education, training and employment programme at the former site of Turakina Māori Girls’ College
• $60,000 towards the Tararua Tourism & Trails Strategy
• $50,000 to investigate education to employment pathways within Horowhenua

The projects are subject to funding contracts that will include a range of agreed commercial arrangements, targets, milestones and deliverables.

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37 Comments

  1. robertguyton

     /  November 17, 2018

    Finally! Regional development at pace!

    Reply
    • artcroft

       /  November 17, 2018

      No just more good intentions, poorly thought through.

      Reply
      • Kitty Catkin

         /  November 17, 2018

        I don’t see broadband as a great priority; surely people have it. My road has been dug up and cables laid, but it doesn’t seem to make any difference.

        Reply
    • Gezza

       /  November 17, 2018

      I am definitely in favour of government funding being use for regional development where it leads directly to knowledge and skills acquisition, employment opportunities and social & economic benefits to people in those regions.

      But I’m wary of funds being spent on “investigating” ideas and feasibility studies, and after watching Jones answer a Question In The House a while back to the effect that as four Ministers (one of whom is Willie Jackson) make the decisions on what the PGF funds get allocated to the was no need for him or they to be overly concerned about proceeding with any ideas that officials had stated were proposals that simply didn’t stack up.

      Reply
      • Gezza

         /  November 17, 2018

        Drat.
        *there was no need.

        Reply
      • Gezza

         /  November 18, 2018

        I just watched those two clips in PG’s post. Did anybody else get the impression NewShub might have sent a turkey to interview a peacock ? 😳

        Reply
  2. Pink David

     /  November 17, 2018

    “Simon asks Shane Jones how he will measure the success of the PGF”

    Shane’s answer; “My reelection in 2020”.

    Reply
    • That seems to be a major aim, but it won’t be his reelection, it will be NZ First’s. Perhaps he hopes to be leading the party by then.

      Reply
      • Kitty Catkin

         /  November 17, 2018

        Well, Auntie Winnie will be hitting 80 by then.

        Reply
        • robertguyton

           /  November 18, 2018

          I recall Pete declaring the importance of using correct names for Politicians. Perhaps he’s applying his rule … selectively.

          Reply
          • You’ve been told often enough that I don’t have time to examine every comment, and I also use my judgment based on a number of things.

            I apply rules about whining about moderation selectively too.

            Reply
          • Corky

             /  November 18, 2018

            He has stated there is some flexibility.

            Reply
            • Gezza

               /  November 18, 2018

              Exactly. One has to be very careful exploiting that flexibility. Even I’ve managed to get pinged a few times. More than once some of my best comments ever have simply disappeared.

          • Kitty Catkin

             /  November 18, 2018

            Crusher Collins is seen with monotonous regularity here, and it’s so old that it has a grey beard twice as long as yours.

            Reply
        • robertguyton

           /  November 18, 2018

          Calling the leader of NZ1st, “Auntie Winnie” – what a bore.

          Reply
          • Gezza

             /  November 18, 2018

            Can’t be all THAT boring. Seems to have attracted your interest? 😳

            Reply
            • robertguyton

               /  November 18, 2018

              Nah. Not interested. In any case, prattling on, which is boring, can attract interest, if only to try to stop the prattling.

          • Kitty Catkin

             /  November 18, 2018

            Why? I don’t hear you complaining about the names given to other politicians, like the gross insults used of John Key.

            Reply
  3. Zedd

     /  November 17, 2018

    He should forget the 1bil trees & plant 5bil Hemp plants; 1000s of potential organic alternatives; paper, textiles, oils, plastic (bio-deg), bildg materials, biofuelsetc. etc. etc. etc…..

    Reply
    • PartisanZ

       /  November 17, 2018

      That’s the ideal situation Zedd, no two ways about it … and add another few billion cannabis plants for medicinal and therapeutic-recreational use … another major growing, processing, manufacturing and export industry for Aotearoa NZ …

      Failing that the billion trees should be [almost] ANYTHING OTHER THAN PINUS RADIATA!

      Reply
      • Kitty Catkin

         /  November 17, 2018

        It won’t be.I see hemp this and that in shops, but never think to look to see where it’s from. The chemist shop I use sells hemp products,

        They won’t be. Pines are cheap. I suppose that one must concede that, unlike many others, they can be used for a lot of things. The trees in my garden are well established, but even the Birds’ Hotel couldn’t really be used for much that’s useful. The oak will take decades to grow big enough for anything to be made of it.

        $15,000,000 has generously been donated by us taxpayers to the do in PNG; how kind of the PM to do that on our behalf. We don’t need it, after all, It’s only 30 houses.

        I can’t see why the government doesn’t sell the old state house units for a $1 and put a time limit on them being made habitable like the ones in the UK.

        Reply
        • Kitty Catkin

           /  November 17, 2018

          I can’t see why they aren’t thinking of tiny houses, ones built of tyres like one in Ngaruawahia and other such things….

          Reply
        • PartisanZ

           /  November 17, 2018

          Sell them to whom for $1 though, Miss Kitty … that is the question …

          These things have traditionally been done as back-room deals within old boys clubs … and that goes for either National or Labour … The difference often old fortunes or new.

          Of course, when I say “traditionally” I mean for the duration of the “new orthodoxy”, neoliberalism, which is about 34 years old in Aotearoa NZ …

          It’s f**king amazing how quickly a new orthodoxy can be indoctrinated into a population nowadays, using all the techniques honed by decades of making them produce things they didn’t need, often didn’t want and seldom enjoyed producing … by first making them want to buy them …

          Reply
  4. Gezza

     /  November 17, 2018

    Who’s Sarah Indipidity? 😳

    Reply
    • Gezza

       /  November 17, 2018

      Oops. I’ll just try that again …

      Who’s Sarah Indipity? 😳

      Yes, that’s better. It’s always important to get people’s names right, even bozos’.

      Reply
  5. Fight4NZ

     /  November 18, 2018

    My suggestions, backing local consortiums to:
    1. Buy Bluff refinery, rebrand and go to the world market with the only purely renewable energy produced Aluminum. Command a stable premium price and end foreign owners holding us to ransom for power supply.
    2. Upgrade Glenbrook to produce premium spec stainless parts, not just corrugated iron and the like. Again renewable energy based.
    3. In addition further process the byproduct of iron production which is rich in Titanium and Silica, due to the nature of our iron sands. Stop exporting sand, get those buyers involved in the investment here.
    4. New processing to use pinus radiata for Lignosulphonates (a universally used concrete additive) and convert cellulose to microcrystalline and etherified forms used widely in food, supplements and paint industries. There is also technology around to utilise wood chip and waste paint to produce moisture proof and hygienic planking.
    The list goes on. Actual productivity and skills gains to be had.

    Reply
    • PartisanZ

       /  November 18, 2018

      Mostly ‘Think Big’ projects aren’t they Fight4NZ …?

      Not without merit, they should get on and include themselves … but PGF is spreading the net much wider … much more inclusively …

      Pine tree greens can apparently produce both sugar and chlorophyll commercially too …

      Reply
      • Fight4NZ

         /  November 18, 2018

        In the style of ‘think big’ definitely. The imperative to me is to move away from FIRE economics. There are no doubt many more opportunities both less and more grand in scale, but the resource limits in NZ make government input necessary. Look what it has done for China. This fund looks like an opportunity.

        Reply
        • Gezza

           /  November 18, 2018

          It IS an opportunity if it’s spent wisely but Jones doesn’t strike me as a Minister whose decisions on what projects to spend it on are going to always be soundly-based. Some of this is going to get wasted.

          Reply
          • PartisanZ

             /  November 18, 2018

            An almost identifiable proportion of all government spending must get wasted, surely?

            Will Jonesy “overwaste”* or not is probably more the question … and even that rather depends on one’s definition of “productive” or “useful” and “waste”?

            Some of the outcomes can’t be measured in money terms. They look like weeds but are actually healing herbs …

            Reply
            • PartisanZ

               /  November 18, 2018

              “overwaste” might be NEW WORD # 184?

            • Gezza

               /  November 18, 2018

              Sure, outcomes don’t need to be measured in money terms and very often aren’t, or the cost/benefit analysis is only one relevant factor, and there non-monetary KPIs.

              A certain amount of government spending could also be invariably expected to be “wastage”. The champagne and caviar feasting at the recent Criminal Justice talkfest is a classic example.

              But what I mean is there have been hints that Jonesy might just allocate funds to people he likes whose projects aren’t going to deliver much if anything in the area of actual regional development. That’s something he and everyone else is going to have to watch out for.

    • Corky

       /  November 18, 2018

      Good post F4NZ. Unfortunately your suggestions are too innovative. What innovation NZ does create has a habit of basically being given away for a pittance.

      Reply
      • Fight4NZ

         /  November 18, 2018

        Innovation is our strength, endurance our weakness. Our businesses simply run out of resource and competence to continue growing (eg Fletchers, F&P) or fall victim to short term greed (the 80s).

        Reply

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