Kāinga Ora Needs More Accountability, After Spending $300,000 a Year on Bloomberg Computer Terminals
The Taxpayer’s Union is condemning Kāinga Ora for spending more than $300,000 per year on Bloomberg computer terminals, noting that issuing its own debt rather than going through Treasury is costing taxpayers more.
Kāinga Ora revealed that it spends $312,025 per year on seven Bloomberg computer terminals, to monitor an external debt of more than $12 billion that the agency has accumulated through its large-scale housing projects. These computers are on loan until March 2024, under contract. The Treasury, which handles the external debt of other government agencies, has thirteen Bloomberg terminals, by comparison. This will increase when Kāinga Ora’s financing is taken over by the Treasury, achieving cheaper servicing at the cost of the organisation’s independence.
Taxpayers’ Union Campaigns Manager, Callum Purves, says:
“As New Zealand’s worst landlord, Kāinga Ora has shown a continuous disregard for the taxpayers who fund them while also spectacularly failing to fix the ongoing housing crisis.
“With the incredible cost of leasing financial computers year on year, you would think that Kāinga Ora would be more careful with its budgeting. Instead, until the Treasury made the move to take over Kāinga Ora’s loans and debt services, the organisation was actively choosing further costs over checks and balances on its constant spending.
“The number of computers that Kāinga Ora have leased is not only inconsistent with its size compared to the Treasury, but also comparatively lavish. Recent Taxpayer’s Union – Curia polling has shown that despite spending more and more on the bloated public service, the public do not see that spending translating into results through better services and outcomes.
“The next Government must get Kāinga Ora under control and place a stronger focus on practical solutions such as reforming the RMA to enable more housing to be built and getting rid of the nonsensical rules that artificially constrain housing and drive up rents."