The final details of the Government’s much-touted Families Package have been released and will see a huge boost for families with children.

The new Government's self-imposed debt target is limiting its ability to borrow to fix growing infrastructure deficits. Bernard Hickey reports it will be forced into fancy and expensive financing tools such as PPPs and infrastructure bonds.

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Treasury has gone through the Labour-led Government's policies with a fine tooth comb teasing out where costs will increase, and listed them as "policy change risks."

The new Government has unveiled a Budget outlook that fits its big health, education, transport and welfare spending plans within its self-imposed restrictions to reduce debt and keep running surpluses.

The Government is anticipating a rise in costs for providing services for children with autism and other special needs, as well school students with English as a second language.


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A blow-out in the cost of a major defence project has led to a war of words between the new government and its predecessor, with Defence Minister Ron Mark suggesting Navy crew lives were “compromised” as a result.


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Adrian Orr worked as a truck driver in his youth growing up among Polynesian families in Taupo and squatted in council flats in London as a student. He's now set to be a fresh type of Reserve Bank Governor. Bernard Hickey reports.

As an Australian senator has resigned over his links to China, some in New Zealand are pointing to a newly released document as highlighting concerns about the country’s influence here. But there is debate over the significance of China’s efforts, as Sam Sachdeva reports.


Finance Minister Grant Robertson has accepted a recommendation from the Reserve Bank board that current New Zealand Superannuation Fund Chief Executive Adrian Orr become the next Governor of the Bank when acting Governor Grant Spencer retires at the end of March.

With the Government’s openness and transparency under attack, new Minister Clare Curran has had a busy first few months. She tells Shane Cowlishaw how she plans to shake-up both her own colleagues and the broadcasting sector she is now responsible for.

At some point, the previous government’s big-money promise for defence equipment was going to run into political reality. But courtesy of the Labour-led Government’s arrival, it is happening faster than expected, writes Robert Ayson.

Speaking on the eve of this Thursday's key Half Yearly Economic and Fiscal Update, Finance Minister Grant Robertson has emphasised his direction to ministers to cut spending in unwanted areas to ensure the Government meets its fiscal responsibility rules.

Political scientist Bryce Edwards called late last month for a coalition to form to fix the Official Information Act. He reports back on a positive initial response in and around Government.