Today in politics: Friday, November 7

Tolley on Kickstart, Hone stuck at lights


The Government is talking up its efforts to provide breakfasts in schools as it prepares to vote down the "feed the kids" bill.

On Wednesday night the bill championed by former MP Hone Harawira, which would extend free meals to include lunches, was postponed because of the security debate.

But yesterday Social Development Minister Anne Tolley attended an event at Holy Family School in Porirua to celebrate 3 million breakfasts served under KickStart. 


Housing advice not chip off The Block


Phil Twyford thought he had scored a win in Parliament yesterday when he asked Finance Minister Bill English if the Government had asked the makers of TV’s The Block for advice, given they had built more houses in two seasons than the special housing areas in Auckland. 

English fired back that all of the houses on the show cost more than $1 million, ‘‘the bit of the market Labour’s interested in, but we’re interested in what normal households can afford’’.


Travel on agenda for Flavell


New Maori Development Minister Te Ururoa Flavell will be clocking up the air miles in the coming months as he embarks on a major tour to the regions to hear from local communities about the impacts of government policy.

Starting in Gisborne on Sunday, the Maori Party co-leader will take part in 12 regional open forums [whakahononga-a-rohe] throughout the North Island, with a South Island tour coming early next year.


Craig still pouring cash into party

Conservative Party leader Colin Craig may not have won a seat at the last election – or the one before that – but he looks to be making good on his promise that the Conservatives will be back for another go in 2017.

Craig has now spent over $3 million of his personal income on the party.

The latest Electoral Commission returns show Craig donated $355,000 to the party last week, adding to the $2.75 million he had invested by polling day.