A $20 billion target for election lobbyists

On of the most unusual features of the budget announced yesterday was twenty billion dollars in the $50 billion Covid Recovery Fund “remaining for future investment”.

Investments totalling $13.9 billion have already been made from the fund to fight the virus and cushion the blow. Cabinet has agreed a further $15.9 billion of investments to continue the immediate response and kickstart the economy, leaving $20.2 billion remaining for future investment.

This is a huge amount sitting waiting for spending decisions to be made, on top of already large amounts of expenditure..

It hasn’t taken long for political lobbyists to see this as an an opportunity.

Yesterday the government announced their budget for 2020 and what we learned is that the Finance Minister has set aside $20 billion in the Covid-19 recovery fund that is yet to be allocated.

With an election coming up, those of us wanting something different out of yesterday’s budget have a clear window of opportunity to demand it.

In the last seven weeks, we’ve been challenged to reflect on our values, how we care for one another, and what’s important. The $20 billion left in the Covid-19 recovery fund is an opportunity to take what we’ve learned and use it to reshape our economy, democracy, the way we care for our environment, and the way we care for each other.

Let’s create this vision together, then work collectively to bring it to life:

  1. We will combine the power and wisdom of thousands of ActionStation members to choose the big ideas via this survey.
  2. We’ll launch the results as a people-powered community vision called The People’s Regeneration Plan .
  3. Together we will campaign to build the pressure and people power needed to make our vision a reality.

Now is the time for the ActionStation community to collectively decide what type of Aotearoa we want to build beyond this crisis, and that’s why we need to be clear about what we’re asking for.

ActionStation isn’t looking at Covid specific initiatives, but rather seem to see it as an opportunity to promote their political wish list.

A screenshot of the survey responses. A link to an accessible survey is provided below.

I didn’t think that was the sort of thing the Covid Recovery Fund was intended for but others obviously see it differently.

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2 Comments

  1. Duker

     /  15th May 2020

    “This is a huge amount sitting waiting for spending decisions to be made, on top of already large amounts of expenditure..”
    Thats because parliament has to approve the spending first …its the parliament has always worked. The broad parameters are set by Cabinet process and then its up to the ministries- councils- quangoes to evaluate the projects.
    Some people seem to have forgotten its only 2 months since the first hints of the virus here, 14th March we were planning a commemoration for the Mosque victims.

    Unless you have a project management background, its ludicrous to think firm details and costs cane be made under the circumstances of last 2 months, many items were just in the pipelaine , ie new Cook St ferries etc but arent even designed let alone ready to ride down the slipway

    Reply
  2. Pink David

     /  15th May 2020

    “Unless you have a project management background, its ludicrous to think firm details and costs cane be made under the circumstances of last 2 months, many items were just in the pipelaine , ie new Cook St ferries etc but arent even designed let alone ready to ride down the slipway”

    Do I hear the phase ‘massive cost overrun’ coming? Budgeting new ferries should be the easiest of all the tasks the government has.

    The$20bn is there because the wage subsidies are going to be massive to keep unemployment under 20%

    Reply

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