Ian McKelvie takes aim at Cost of Living

Ian McKelvie takes aim at Cost of Living

Ruapehu Bulletin, King Country Ohakune  06 April 2022

Ian McKelvie, MP for Rangitikei, which includes Ruapehu, takes a shot at cost of living and the current Government: Jacinda Ardern famously said in 2013, "Unemployment, housing and cost of living add up to people losing faith in government".

This quote couldn't be more relevant to today. And she's right, New Zealanders have definitely lost faith in this Government.

If you've been to the supermarket lately, or a gas station or even bought a newspaper and some milk from the dairy, you'll have experienced the massive rise in inflation let alone if you're paying rent or a mortgage. Inflation is at 5.9% and rising, which is the highest it's been in 30 years. The cost of living has skyrocketed, especially over the last four years.

Rural and provincial New Zealand is always hit particularly hard by inflation, especially fuel costs as we invariably travel further to access goods and services and even to get to work and school. Similarly, the goods and services we buy often have to travel further to get to us.

To add insult to injury, New Zealand workers are effectively earning less now, as wages fail to keep pace with rising inflation and those on the lowest incomes are the hardest hit. The latest available data puts average wage inflation at just 2.6 per cent. Kiwis have to work longer hours just to stand still further evidence that this Labour Government is losing control of the economy. And surging inflation is a real threat to economic growth.

Kiwis need relief from the cost of living crisis. Now more than ever is the time to adjust tax brackets for inflation.

If not now, then when? Someone earning $55,000 a year would pay $800 less tax under National's plan to adjust tax brackets for inflation. Letting Kiwis keep more of what they earn would help insulate families from inflation and restore confidence to an economy that's heading into dangerous territory.