Maori Party backs Greens' farms bill
Mon, 02 Jul 2012 11:15a.m.
The Maori Party is backing a bill the Greens have put up to stop foreigners buying farms and the government has another fight on its hands when parliament resumes.
It already faces losing a vote on a Labour bill and there's going to be a close call on the Greens' bill as well.
It's on the order paper for a first reading when Parliament comes back from a two-week recess on July 17.
"The focus of this bill is at the very heart of the Maori Party," co-leader Tariana Turia said at the weekend.
"We certainly support this bill to retain ownership and control of sensitive land within New Zealand."
With the Maori Party voting alongside opposition parties, the Government will need help from United Future's Peter Dunne and ACT's John Banks to stop the bill with 61 votes to 60.
The rules around foreign ownership of land have been tightened once and the Government feels it has gone far enough.
Labour MP David Clark has told NZ Newswire he has assurances from the Maori Party and Mr Dunne that they will back his bill to "Mondayise" Anzac Day and Waitangi Day when they fall on a weekend.
The Government opposes the bill, and if all of the parties keep their word it will pass its first reading 61-60.
There was a close call last week when Labour MP Phil Twyford's bill to make depleted uranium illegal was defeated on a 60-60 vote.
An affirmative vote is needed for a bill to pass.
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3/07/2012 1:09:44 p.m.
Tehi Ellis wrote:
Kia Kaha Whaea, you go ahead and fight this selling off of crucial and sensitive assets. These neo-liberal policies are going to drive the country headlong into the third world abyss. Selling off the silver is no real substitute for creating real employment. National has no answer, even where the Christchurch scenario could kick start our economy.
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