Wednesday, June 29, 2022

Member's day

Today is a Member's Day, and it looks like its back to local legislation for a while. First up is the committee stage of the highly controversial Canterbury Regional Council (Ngāi Tahu Representation) Bill, which would allow unelected appointees (and a disproportionate number of them, at that) on ECan. This was something Ngai Tāhu got used to under National's dictatorship, but there's a world of difference between appointing iwi representatives to an unelected body, and appointing them to an elected one. It might be a good way of recognising the Treaty relationship, but I'd want to see a much bigger constitutional conversation about it before proceeding.

Following that, there's the rather boring Palmerston North Reserves Empowering Amendment Bill, which is about letting my local council sell a former reserve (which they have deliberately neglected) to property developers so it can become another motel on Fitzherbert Ave. I oppose this, but the best way of dealing with it is to vote some arseholes out in October, so the council never uses the powers the bill grants.

After that, we have some first readings. First is some National-style law-and-order bullshit from Greg O'Connor, in the form of the Child Protection (Child Sex Offender Government Agency Registration) (Overseas Travel Reporting) Amendment Bill. Like a lot of law-and-order bullshit, it contravenes the Bill of Rights Act. Labour will vote it through anyway, because O'Connor is one of theirs. Which is about the level of "protection" Parliament gives to our human rights, and shows why we need a much stronger constitutional protection framework. Then its the first reading of Damien Smith's Overseas Investment (Exempt Investment from OECD Countries) Amendment Bill, which is about gutting overseas investment protections for people from rich, overwhelmingly white countries (which sounds very ACT, doesn't it?). If the House moves quickly I expect it to make a start on Chris Baillie's Repeal of Good Friday and Easter Sunday as Restricted Trading Days (Shop Trading and Sale of Alcohol) Amendment Bill. There should be a ballot for at least two bills tomorrow.