Less staff and more services

The Herald reports:

A decision to cut staff in the Ministry of Youth Development, and instead work with philanthropic and businesses, is an ideological decision which cuts against good process, the Public Service Association says.

Youth Development Minister announced today that about 10 staff would go under a restructure which could also see the Ministry’s headquarters move to Auckland.

The cuts were to free up $1 million, which would be put into a new partnership arrangement between the Ministry and philanthropic and business groups to boost the number of youth in leadership programmes from 50,000 to 70,000.

The number of staff is being cut in half, with the savings to go into increasing programmes for youth. That’s excellent, and I hope we see more of this.

She is also considering moving the Ministry’s base to Auckland to be closer to the philanthropic organisations and businesses likely to be involved.

Also good – ministries do not need to be based in Wellington.

Ms Kaye said it would be a big change for a small department, but currently $2.9 million was spent on operational costs by the ministry which administered $6 million for youth development programmes.

Spending $3 million to administer $6 million is way too high.

“That is too much for a small agency. I guess there’ll be 10 fewer officials in Wellington, but that’s 10,000 more places for youth development opportunities.”

It’s tough for the staff affected, but the role of Government is not to create jobs for officials, but to have the right number of officials to deliver government services and policies.

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