New Zealand agrees - increase tax revenue for better public services


New Zealanders overwhelmingly agree public services need more funding - and they think tax should be increased to pay for them, according to new research released today.

A UMR survey commissioned by the CTU shows 92% of Kiwis agree public services like hospitals, schools and the transport system need more government funding.

Almost two-thirds said the government should increase tax to at least maintain public services at their current levels into the future.

"This research confirms what the PSA has been saying for months now: New Zealanders want better public services, and they want them to be properly funded," PSA National Secretaries Erin Polaczuk and Glenn Barclay say.

"Kiwis know that strong and innovative public services are crucial to building vibrant and healthy communities, and the PSA’s election campaign centred on the need to recognise that.

"We’re pleased to see this conclusive proof: now we want to see action."

Mr Barclay and Ms Polaczuk also say the figures support the PSA’s view that alternative forms of taxation need to be at least considered - like environment or wealth taxes.

The PSA has called on the government to relax the Budget Responsibility Rules it has adopted, which limit government spending on public services.

"This survey confirms New Zealanders want excellent public services - and to do that, they support greater funding," Ms Polaczuk and Mr Barclay say.

"Nine years of resource and staffing caps and a lack of investment means there is a lot of ground to make up.

"We suggest it is far better to relax the Budget Responsibility Rules now and future-proof our public services - especially because New Zealanders have told us that is what they want."