National – United Future Agreement

The National – United Future agreement is online here.

  • Peter Dunne to be Minister of Revenue and Associate Health

Good. He can keep pushing for flatter taxes from there.

  • Maintain Families Commission

I just knew that would be there!

  • Reduce elective surgery waiting lists by greater utilisation of private hospital capacity, in a planned way where this cannot be met by the public hospital system

Excellent – no arguments at all.

  • Progressing the long-term medicines strategy for quality use of pharmaceuticals in the health sector
  • Support Public Private Partnerships for major roading infrastructure developments such as the Transmission Gully highway

I’ll celebrate the day the first car drives along it, but not before!

  • The government notes that United Future has been committed to income splitting as a key part of their tax policy and agrees to support appropriate legislation to First Reading in Parliament.

Where parties can’t agree on something, an agreement to support to select committee is quite sensible, as it allows the public and other parties to consider their positions and submit on it.

  • Establish a Big Game Hunting Council as part of a national wild game management strategy

I guess that came from the Oudoor Recreation Party they gobbled up a few years ago.

I did note one section in the agreement:

Cabinet Manual

The Leader of United Future agrees to be bound by the Cabinet Manual in the exercise of his Ministerial responsibilities, and in particular agrees to be bound by the provisions in the Cabinet Manual on the conduct, public duty, and personal interests of Ministers.

This is what you would call the Winston clause. Helen allowed Winston to trample all over the Cabinet Manual – he didn’t get permission for travel, he ddn’t declare gifts, he didn’t get the PM’s permission to keep gifts etc. John Key is signalling he will expect a higher standard of integrity from his Ministers than Helen Clark did.

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