Immigration Bill Gets Guarded Support From NZ First

by Desk Editor on Tuesday, April 16, 2013 — 10:02 PM

The Government managed to gain the support of NZ First for its immigration bill setting up a regime for dealing with the mass arrival of asylum seekers.

MPs began the second reading of the Immigration Amendment Bill this afternoon after it was deferred last August while Ministers negotiated with Peter Dunne for his support.

Immigration Minister Jonathan Coleman indicated the bill would be amended to make an arrival of 30 or more refugee seekers with Dunne’s support.

It completed its second reading by 71 to 50 with National, NZ First, Maori Party, ACT and United Future in favour

NZ First Leader Winston Peters indicated his party would withdraw support unless the Government included in legislation that it would create a secure detention centre for refugees.

Labour and the Greens opposed the bill saying it was “dog whistle politics’’ to deal with a non-existent threat.

The Plumbers, Gasfitters, and Drainlayers Amendment Bill also completed its second reading by 61 to 60 with National, ACT and United Future in support.
The bill addresses an issue of regulatory powers and fees which have provoked legal battles, inquiries and deeply divided the occupations covered by the bill.

Opposition to the bill was mainly around the retrospective nature of the bill.

The House rose at 10pm interrupting debate on the Building Amendment Bill (No 4).

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