Pointers to a bleak but not black Budget

May 8, 2009

Those who like sniffing out clues to what will be in the Budget would have learned nothing significant from The Boss yesterday, when he talked to Business New Zealand in Wellington.

Essentially, he destroyed any illusions about it being a generous budget that might have survived the release of the crown accounts for the nine months to March.

The accounts showed there ain’t much scope for extra spending without borrowing, and John Key and Bill English are reluctant borrowers.

On the other hand, Key (the previous day) was trying to disabuse us of the idea it will be black budget.

“I wouldn’t describe it as black, in fact we are spending a lot of extra money on health and education, but beyond that there is not a lot more to go around,” said Key.

Finance Minister Bill English said he would be scaling back some of the spending promises made by Labour, but there would still be increases.

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Dropping down to a gentle cruising speed

April 6, 2009

It doesn’t take much to put the frighteners up the Greens. Promoting the idea that vehicles with four wheels are more important than those with two is sure to pump up their adrenalin levels.

Budget realities – obviously – were uppermost in our Finance Minister’s mind when he said not as much money will be spent on the national cycleway as seemed likely when The Boss was enthusing about the idea after the recent Jobs Summit.

Sure enough, this triggered a statement from the vegetable and nuts party this afternoon:
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