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Government reviews target problems, improve lives, and save millions of dollars

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Government work to involve experts and ordinary New Zealanders in solving some big challenges, find solutions that last beyond a three year cycle, and improve lives also have the potential to save tax payers millions in the long run, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern says.

“I’ve always said we are going to do Government differently, and one of the main ways we’re different is that we listen to experts and make sure everyday people have a say about the public services they rely on,” Jacinda Ardern said.

The National opposition have made false claims about the extent of this work, inaccurately labelling regular government business as reviews and working groups and making inaccurate claims about how much this work is costing the taxpayer.

"Where we are doing review work, it’s because the public have called for it or there are genuine issues that need to be fixed - be it bowel screening, mental health or insurance claimed in Canterbury.

“The review into meth contamination is a prime example. We could have ignored the problem, or brought in the experts to stop more families being evicted, and avoid unnecessary clean-up costs for landlords.

“The $100 million National wasted on decontaminating houses could have built 300 more state homes - instead perfectly good ones sat empty. Now we are reopening those homes.

“I’m proud that we’re willing to ask experts and everyday Kiwis what kind of education they want for their children, and that we’re giving the victims of state abuse a voice.

“This Government believes New Zealanders deserve to be heard, and they have a right to know that the Government is getting the best value for the public money it spends,” Jacinda Ardern said.

Facts on the reviews:

  • National is spreading false information.
  • The Government has begun 38 reviews, or working groups that involve external agencies, and constitute work that’s beyond the normal business of a government department.
  • The cost of this is about $34.5 million.
  • That’s 4 cents in every $100 the Government spends, to make sure that we’re getting the best value for New Zealand.

  • Source: A Beehive release