Budget Day 2018: What to expectby Chris Bramwell
Finance Minister Grant Robertson is pitching today's Budget as one that will set the foundations for the government's plan to make the economy more sustainable.
It will invest $42 billion in capital spending over the next five years, in hospitals and schools and other critical public services.
Health is likely to be the biggest winner, with Labour having talked up the sector being underfunded under National.
Hospital buildings blighted with rot, mould and asbestos making headlines has helped fuel Labour's narrative that the sector has been neglected.
All the noises out of the Beehive point towards health getting a sizeable boost, but expect some areas to be subject to phased-in or delayed spending, to be able to meet the demands.
There has also been a lot of talk from the government about buildings in the education sector being in a poor state.
Education Minister Chris Hipkins estimated it would cost about $166 million to deal with them, which he argued could not all be done this year, meaning the funding would have to be spread over the next four years.
There are also promises set out in the coalition agreement like offering free driving training to all secondary students and restoring funding for gifted students, and there are hints of specific announcements in the early childhood sector.
Housing is the third area likely to be a big focus - with the government already putting on record it will invest $2 billion in its KiwiBuild programme to build 100,000 affordable houses over the next decade, though whether $650,000 is affordable has been the subject of much debate this week.
More funding for state housing is also on the cards, with the waiting list for the homes hitting an all-time high - headlines the coalition government will want to avoid.
So how will it all unfold today?
At 10.30am journalists, economists and other analysts will be locked into the Banquet Hall at Parliament and copies of the budget will be distributed and poured over.
Mr Robertson will make a speech in the lockup and take questions, before heading back to his Beehive office to have his budget day snack (note: it's not going to be a pie like the former Finance ministers, Steven Joyce and Bill English).
Mr Robertson will then head to the debating chamber with Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern to start his budget speech at 2pm - the same time that the Banquet Hall doors are unlocked and journalists begin reporting the contents of the 2018 Budget.
This article was originally published by RNZ.
Serena Williams’ US Open outburst was unbecoming but the umpire made a mess of his response.Read more
The suffrage celebrations get a soundtrack from all-male ensemble NZTrio.Read more
The public will have to wait to see a report into an assault claim against MP Meka Whaitiri, who was yesterday stripped of her ministerial portfolios.Read more
Metro writer Anthony Byrt looks at how a handful of extremists and “public intellectuals” are making money from manufactured moral outrage.Read more
Tom Scott's new album, Avantdale Bowling Club, is a celebration of a kind, an expansive paean to the place that raised him and where he belongs.Read more
A look at the Norton Core secure router, and five tips for home network security.Read more
Labour MP Meka Whaitiri has been stripped of her ministerial portfolios but remains an MP.Read more