Lower Taxes, Less Waste,
More Accountability

Championing Value For Money From Every Tax Dollar

REVEALED: Taxpayers fork out $870,000 a year for MBIE staff to do union roles

The Taxpayers’ Union can reveal that taxpayers are forking out at least $871,484 each year for MBIE staff to do union work on taxpayer time.

The secretive arrangement - the creation of which MBIE did not have any correspondence with Ministers - includes two full-time roles paid at least $101,911 each and 125 other roles where employees are able to take between 8 and 64 hours a month off work for union activities.

Taxpayers’ Union Campaigns Manager, Connor Molloy, said:

“This is nothing short of a scandal where taxpayers are being forced to fund the operations, and growth, of one of the country’s most powerful lobby groups that regularly engages in overtly political campaigning.

“If the Government was found to be giving paid government positions to groups pushing for smaller government and less wasteful spending the unions and opposition parties would rightly be in uproar. Taxpayers should not be paying for the government to lobby itself.

“If a PSA union membership offers worthwhile benefits to its members, they should have no issue with funding their operations solely from membership dues – instead taxpayers are being forced to pick up the tab to fund the union’s dirty work.

“The fact this agreement was not even briefed to either the previous Labour or current government shows a shocking attitude by MBIE. Taxpayers shouldn’t be paying anything to unions, and the government must urgently step in to put an end to this rort which is happening in countless other departments too.”

A copy of the OIA response from MBIE can be found here. 

A copy of the MBIE PSA NATIONAL CO-CONVENOR job description can be found here.

A copy of the spreadsheet used to calculate the costs can be downloaded here. 

Showing 1 reaction

  • Nztu Media
    published this page in News 2024-05-22 23:45:21 +1200

Join Us

Joining the Taxpayers' Union costs only $25 and entitles you to attend our annual conference, AGM and other events.


With your support we can make the Taxpayers' Union a strong voice exposing waste and standing up for Kiwi taxpayers.

Tip Line

Often the best information comes from those inside the public service or local government. We guarantee your anonymity and your privacy.