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Antonio Hall fire puts heritage buildings back in the spotlight

Heritage buildings are in the spotlight after a devastating fire at Christchurch's 110-year-old Antonio Hall. The owners had not done any maintenance to it for more than 20 years and this led to calls for tougher rules for owners of heritage properties to take more care of their buildings. Read more

Dr Eric Crampton
Heather-du-Plessis-Allan Drive - Newstalk ZB
15 July, 2019
Wellington cablecar

Allowing growth to pay for itself

Can local community growth pay for itself? In other words, can economic growth itself pay for the community’s required infrastructure expansion (e.g. from revamped wastewater and drinking water networks to the proper provision of local amenities and safer roads)? Read more

Dr Patrick Carvalho
Insights Newsletter
12 July, 2019
wish flower

The curse of getting what you wish for

Parables, biblical or otherwise, are excellent instruction. They warn of the dangers of getting what you wish for. Local Government New Zealand might wish to take heed.Midas had regrets.The 1001 Arabian Nights tells of the blind beggar of Baghdad. In that story, a dervish had a magic cream that, if anointed on one eye, would reveal hidden treasures – but would give only blindness if applied to both eyes. Read more

Dr Eric Crampton
Insights Newsletter
12 July, 2019

Media release: Continuing the localism debate

Wellington (7 July 2019): The New Zealand Initiative is proud to support the release of Local Government New Zealand’s (LGNZ) localism discussion paper, Reinvigorating local democracy, which was launched today at the 2019 LGNZ Conference in Wellington. The discussion paper outlines a gradual process for New Zealand to move from being one of the world’s most centralised countries in the developed world to one that is prepared to trust its communities to play a meaningful role in our social, economic... Read more

Media release
7 July, 2019

Media Release: Prod Comm report important for the localism debate

Wellington (4 July 2019): The New Zealand Initiative commends the New Zealand Productivity Commission’s draft report on local government funding and financing. “The report stresses the importance of high performing local government for community wellbeing. It considers that changes in governance, transparency and funding arrangements could help them improve their performance,” said Dr Bryce Wilkinson, Senior Fellow at The New Zealand Initiative. Our 2019 essay, #localismNZ: Bringing power to the people, stressed the importance of local government for community wellbeing... Read more

Media Reslease
4 July, 2019

From Kiwibuild to Kiwis Building

At its heart, Kiwibuild was a promise to end the housing crisis. The set of reforms Minister Twyford is overseeing can fulfil that promise, if he has the chance to see them through.The housing crisis has nothing to do with government failing to build enough homes. It stems instead from a nasty mess of perverse incentives facing growing councils, debt limits, infrastructure financing problems, and difficulty in revising district plans under RMA processes – as a starting point.If the prior... Read more

Dr Eric Crampton
Insights Newsletter
14 June, 2019

Let them have fun

“Nothing good happens after 3 am,” Auckland’s top-ranking police officer once said.“Facts tend to be overanalysed,” his Wellingtonian counterpart claimed.Unfortunately, personal opinions and anecdotal evidence like this about opening hours and alcohol licences of bars and party venues often decide the direction of policy proposals for regulating the night-time economy. Yet, such arbitrary behaviour is typical – abroad and in New Zealand.For example, in 2014 the government of New South Wales introduced new controls for the nightlife across large parts... Read more

Natanael Rother
Insights Newsletter
14 June, 2019

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