Sir William Gallagher runs Gallagher, a global enterprise with over 1000 employees. Penny Vergeest is the managing director of the New Zealand Skincare Company which has 13 employees.
1. What caught your eye in this Budget?
Sir William Gallagher: ''Well the first thing that I saw was getting the budget balanced next year.
''Then you drill down to some of the ones that affect us. Fixing that R&D anomaly (Research and Development spending was previously non-depreciative and non-deductable), that's positive. There's also some help for start ups.''
Penny Vergeest: ''I was quite impressed with the free healthcare for under 13's.''We have three under 13's. It's really important. If children are sick they need to get to the doctor.''
2. What did you think of the 18 weeks for paid parental leave?
Sir William Gallagher: ''That's reasonable. It's meant to be assistance not middle class welfare which I think is ineffective. It's meant to help those who are struggling.''
Penny Vergeest: ''I was surprised the Government didn't go to 26 weeks. I thought they probably would have done that.''
3. It's being punted as a family-friendly Budget, does it really achieve that?
Sir William Gallagher: ''It's not extreme. It's within affordability. It's not far off a steady-as-she-goes budget.''
Penny Vergeest: ''It has got aspects of helping families. I think, without sounding ...it's kind of a middle class budget. I think there's still a lot of things that could be done for families that are struggling.''
4. Marks out of ten for this Budget?
Sir William Gallagher: ''I'd say seven or eight out of ten.''
Penny Vergeest: ''Maybe a six or seven. I think it's just safe. That's all it was. It seems to be a little bit ho hum.''
- Waikato Times