Financial Statement Debate Completed With Some Dissent

by Desk Editor on Tuesday, April 28, 2015 — 5:29 PM

Parliament completed the two hour debate on the Government’s financial statements for 2013/2014 this afternoon though not everyone was happy with the process.

After Question Time by agreement of the the Business Committee began a nine hour debate on the committee stage of the Appropriation (2013/14 Confirmation and Validation) Bill.

This includes two hours debate on the Government’s financial statements for 2013/14 and seven hours debate on the 2013/14 annual reviews.

The new process for dealing with the annual reviews was not well received by New Zealand First Leader Winston Peters who said the ratio of speaking time given to his party was not in proportion to its presence in Parliament.

The Chairman of the House in committee Chester Borrows said the matter had been decided by the Business Committee to make the more debate more relevant.

Mr Peters did not agree and he sought leave for amendment to the speaking roster, but this was denied.

The debate was completed and the report accepted on a voice vote.

MPs then began the seven hour debate on the financial reviews covering the Government’s inter-departmental themes:

These are:

• Services for citizens: education, health, housing, senior citizens, social Development

• Services for business: accident compensation, commerce and consumer affairs, customs, economic development, foreign affairs and trade, immigration, labour, science and innovation, tourism

• Infrastructure: Canterbury earthquake recovery, communications, energy, transport

• Justice: corrections, courts, Crown legal and drafting services, justice, police and serious fraud

• Natural resources: conservation, environment, lands

• Primary industries: primary industries (agriculture, fisheries, forestry, horticulture, biosecurity), food safety

• Internal affairs and government relationships: arts, culture and heritage, defence, finance and revenue, internal affairs, Māori affairs, Pacific Island affairs, Prime Minister and Cabinet, security intelligence, services for Parliament, sport and recreation, State services, statistics, Treaty negotiations, and women’s affairs.

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