$1 billion of our money to try and buy Shane a seat

Paul Goldsmith released:

Shane Jones’ admission this morning that his Provincial Growth Fund is a political tool is backed up by new figures released this morning revealing Northland as the main recipient of taxpayers’ money, National’s Regional Economic Development spokesperson Paul Goldsmith says.

“The Provincial Growth Fund should really be renamed the Political Survival Fund after more than half the funding announced so far has gone to one region – one with less than 10 per cent of regional New Zealand’s population.

“MBIE information shows Northland has sought $54.6 million from the fund so far. Applications from all the other regions combined amounted to $240 million.

“Yet Northland projects have received funding up to $61 million – even more than they’ve asked for. While the rest of the regions have had to make do with $42.4 million combined, plus a $7.5 million grant to the Howard League covering the whole country, including Northland.

“Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones and New Zealand First haven’t hidden the fact they see their party’s survival linked to winning a Northland seat. Now the Minister has confirmed that the rest of New Zealand are paying for it.

So around 60% of the spending from the fund has gone to an area with under 10% of the provincial population.

It is no secret that after Winston got rejected by Northland, their strategy is to have Shane Jones stand there in 2020. And taxpayers may end up spending hundreds of millions of dollars just to try and win Shane a seat.

Shane of course needs the help I guess. His record is:

  • 2005 – got 24% of the electorate vote in Northland
  • 2008 – got 29% of the electorate vote in Northland
  • 2011 – got 34% of the electorate vote in Tamaki Makarau
  • 2017 –

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