Beehive Bulletin 4 November 2005
Government support for South Auckland communities
The government is providing financial and management support to South Auckland communities to help resolve the issue of youth gangs. New Social Development Minister David Benson-Pope this week announced the Ministry of Social Development will take a lead role in helping to resolve the increase in serious youth gang violence in Manukau.
The Ministry will also undertake research aimed at better understanding why young people are forming and joining gangs. Mr Benson-Pope said the Ministry was committed to working closely with community leaders and groups, and providing resources and support was part of the government's response to the South Auckland communities' call for help.
A Youth Support Project co-ordinator, to be funded for the Mangere East Family Service Centre, will establish and manage a local project, bringing together community groups and government agencies to provide practical and responsive services for young people. Representatives from the Manukau City Council, Police, Social Development, Y
Security chips for NZ passports
New 'e-passports' - electronic information chips inserted into New Zealand passports - have been introduced. Internal Affairs Minister Rick Barker said from today, newly issued passports will carry the new security chip, containing the passport holder's photograph and other personal data already included on the inside of the passport.
The new measure is designed to enhance the security and protect the integrity of the New Zealand passport. Existing passports will still be valid until they expire, and people will automatically receive the new e-passport when they reapply. The new measure means the fees increase: Passports for adults will rise from $71 to $150 and from $36 to $80 for children.
Gisborne and Tolaga Bay flood package
Cabinet has agreed to an assistance package for Gisborne and Tolaga Bay farmers whose crops were ruined by recent floods. Agriculture Minister Jim Anderton said Cabinet had agreed to a package including assistance with post-flood clean-up operations through Enhanced Taskforce Green (totaling about $150,000) funding and income support via the Rural Assistance scheme.
The package also includes further investigation into extra support for farmers and horticulturalists that experienced significant flood damage. Mr Anderton said the government would also consider funding a study to explore the appropriateness of establishing flood protection measures for Tolaga Bay.
The TVNZ Board this week explained the circumstances behind the sudden resignation of Chief Executive Ian Fraser, in a report to Broadcasting Minister Steve Maharey. The report explained that Mr Fraser's departure resulted from a difference of opinion between the CEO and the Board on the process for negotiating senior presenter salaries.
Mr Maharey said it was also clear there was no breach of the editorial independence protocol enshrined in the 2003 TVNZ Act, nor was there any inappropriate interference in the day to day operations of the company. The Board is seeking to appoint an acting chief executive while it begins to recruit a permanent appointment.
Ministers, whips, and a Speaker
The re-elected Labour-led government is back in business with the first full meeting of the new Cabinet this week. The Cabinet Ministers are: Prime Minister Helen Clark, Deputy Prime Minister Dr Michael Cullen, Jim Anderton (Progressives Leader), Steve Maharey, Phil Goff, Annette King, Trevor Mallard, Pete Hodgson, Parekura Horomia, Mark Burton, Ruth Dyson, Chris Carter, Rick Barker, David Benson-Pope, Lianne Dalziel, Damien O'Connor, David Cunliffe, David Parker, Nanaia Mahuta, Clayton Cosgrove, Jim Sutton. Ministers outside Cabinet are: Judith Tizard, Dover Samuels, Harry Duynhoven, Mita Ririnui, Luamanuvao Winnie Laban and Mahara Okeroa.
Ministers outside Cabinet from other parties with Confidence and Supply Agreements are: Winston Peters (NZ First) and Peter Dunne (United Future). This week Dr Cullen also announced that the government would support Margaret Wilson to return as Speaker of the House of Representatives, and National list MP Clem Simich would be supported as Deputy Speaker. Meanwhile,
The Commission Opening of Parliament takes place on Monday 7 November when Members will be sworn in and a Speaker elected. The State Opening ceremony follows on Tuesday, 8 November.