A question we have been asked is what type of wasteful government spending will the Taxpayers' Union target? Broadly speaking there will be three types.
This may be the CEO spending up large at Hooters, personal use of taxpayer or ratepayer money, and other spending which is simply not appropriate for a taxpayer funded organisation.
This is where the spending is on something appropriate such as a Council website, but the amount spent is excessive for the value gained. Just because something is worthwhile, doesn't mean that there should be no reasonable budget for it. For example, spending $300,000 on a website for a district of less than 50,000 residents.
This is spending where the policy is misdirected and the spending is inefficient. An example from across the Tasman is Tony Abbott's paid parental leave scheme which rather than cap the subsidy at a level to target low and middle income parents, will provide the greatest subsidies (up to $2,900 a week) to the richest parents - who least need it.
A local example would be the Supergold transport subsidy which has been a financial windfall for transport operators, or interest free-student loans. If the desire is to help low income pensioners with transport costs or to make tertiary education more affordable, there are alternative policies which would achieve these outcomes more efficiently.
Dear politicians, bureaucrats and taxpayer funded organisations,
You are on notice. The Taxpayers' Union is standing up for Kiwi taxpayers and looking to expose examples of waste, extravagance and silly government expenditure.
We publicly launch today.
Though we are new, we already know of examples where bureaucrats are not respecting the hard earned income of the New Zealanders who pay for their spending decisions through taxes. Over the coming weeks we will be exposing some of those examples.
To stay up to date by following us on twitter or liking us on Facebook.
We are encouraging insiders to help. Maybe you're a respected official, frustrated with waste you see in a department. If so, please visit our tip line page - we guarantee the confidentiality of all out tip line sources.
The members of the New Zealand Taxpayers' Union