Taxpayer Talk

Taxpayer Talk

We're the voice for Kiwi taxpayers in the corridors of power. With our 190,000 subscribed members and supporters we fight for Lower Taxes, Less Waste, and More Transparency across all levels of government. Join or support the Taxpayers' Union at


April 20, 2023 41 mins

This week on Taxpayer Talk, Taxpayers' Union Campaigns Manager, Callum Purves, sits down with ACT Party MP, Simon Court, to discuss the recent Three Waters rebrand, the proposed resource management reforms and what ACT is proposing to solve New Zealand's significant infrastructure and planning problems.

Simon Court is ACT's spokesperson for infrastructure, the environment and local government and has been le...

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This week on Taxpayer Talk, Taxpayers' Union Campaigns Manager, Callum Purves, sits down with Wellington City Councillor, Ray Chung, to discuss Wellington’s shocking 12.3% rates rise and why this is being driven by inefficient, wasteful spending at the Council.

Councillor Chung was elected just last year as the representative for Wharangi / Onslow-Western Ward. He's one of the few fiscal conservatives on the Coun...

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On this episode of Taxpayer Talk, Peter Williams speaks with former Te Whatu Ora - Health New Zealand Chair, Rob Campbell, to discuss political neutrality within the public service.

Campbell was publicly sacked from his high-profile position in the public service after making controversial comments about the National Party's Three Waters policy on his LinkedIn account. Campbell has doubled down on his comments and fee...

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This week on Taxpayer Talk, Peter Williams sits down with Nick Stewart to discuss the impacts of Cyclone Gabrielle. The recent cyclone devastated many parts of the country, particularly Hawke's Bay and Gisborne on the East Coast of the North Island. Along with claiming lives and livelihoods, the cyclone exposed serious problems with the adequacy of our infrastructure.

Nick is the Chief Executive of Stewart Group, a Ha...

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In the latest edition of Taxpayer Talk, the focus is on local government with guests Dr Oliver Hartwich and Callum Purves. A review into the future of local government has been commissioned but it fails to address the main issues affecting the sector, in particular the way it’s funded and what its main functions should be. 

New Zealand Initiative Executive Director, Oliver Hartwich, explains to host Peter Williams why more localism ...

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In the latest edition of Taxpayer Talk, host Peter Williams talks with Federated Farmers’ Paul Melville and Mark Hooper about the proposed new planning and environmental legislation to replace the Resource Management Act.

While there is almost unanimous agreement the much maligned RMA needs to be updated and changed, Federated Farmers have serious doubts the new Natural and Built Environments Bill and its companion Spatial...

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In our first episode of Taxpayer Talk for 2023, Peter Williams is joined by lawyer Stephen Franks. Stephen is a founding director of the commercial and public law firm Franks Ogilvie, a former member of Parliament and spokesperson for the Water Users' Group.

Stephen joins Peter to discuss why the Water Users' Group, backed by the Taxpayers' Union, is taking a Government minister to the Court of Appeal and w...

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In this year's final episode of Taxpayer Talk, Peter Williams hosts fellow Taxpayers' Union board members Hon Ruth Richardson and Executive Director, Jordan Williams, to review the highs and lows of 2022.

Peter sits down with Ruth and Jordan to discuss everything from the economy to education to Winston Peters.

As a former Minister of Finance, Ruth is well placed to provide analysis of the political year...

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This week on Taxpayer Talk, Peter Williams hosts ACT Party MP Dr James McDowall. Peter sits down with James to discuss his candidacy for the Hamilton West by-election.

The three highest polling candidates for Hamilton West were all invited to appear on this podcast but only Dr McDowall agreed to appear. Peter and James discuss the issues facing the electorate, his background before politics and why he wants to be Hamilton...

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In this edition of Taxpayer Talk, Peter Williams’s guest is National Party MP and Revenue Spokesperson, Andrew Bayly. Peter and Andrew sit down to discuss the Inland Revenue Department's new powers to request information from individuals.

In 2020, while all the attention was focused on the new 39% top tax rate, another clause was added into the Tax Administration Act 1994 that gives the IRD Commissioner the power to ...

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In this edition of Taxpayer Talk, Peter Williams’s guest is author Alan Duff, the creator of the hugely successful and influential book and movie Once Were Warriors and the founder of the Duffy Books in Homes programme.

Duff's best known book and the movie came out around thirty years ago and shocked middle class New Zealand who hadn’t seen the less privileged represented in such a way. Yet three decades on has the s...

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This week, Peter Williams hosts free speech campaigner Jacob Mchangama, a Danish lawyer who recently visited New Zealand. His visit was prescient as the Justice Minister Kiri Allan has recently promised that hate speech legislation will be in our Parliament by the end of the year.

Jacob is the founder and director of Justitia, a Copenhagen-based think tank focusing on human rights, freedom of speech, and the rule of law. ...

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This week Peter Williams is back on Taxpayer Talk with a highly anticipated interview with Auckland University's Dr Claire Charters.  Claire's research has focused on indigenous peoples’ rights in international and constitutional law, including how the Treaty of Waitangi should interact with our legal system.

Claire was one of the authors of the Government's controversial He Puapua report that, among other t...

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As Peter is away this week, the latest Taxpayer Talk podcast is hosted by Taxpayers' Union Executive Director, Jordan Williams (no relation), with something of a UK special.

Jordan sits down with the Taxpayers' Union's most recent hire, Callum Purves, who is our new Campaigns Manager. Callum has a background as a political advisor, party staffer and district councillor, and has recently moved from Scotland ...

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The latest Taxpayer Talk podcast, hosted by Peter Williams, features Wairarapa farmer and ram breeder Derek Daniell with his take on the proposed farmers tax -  like most men and women of the land he is vehemently opposed. It’s not just the money that farmers will have to pay that bothers Derek, it’s the cost to local communities and the country’s economy too.

Also in this edition, the Taxpayer Talk panel of Taxpayers' Union ch...

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This week on Taxpayer Talk, host Peter Williams is joined by David Round, a former Canterbury University law lecturer, to discuss the Treaty of Waitangi and co-governance. As an expert in the fields of Legal History, Constitutional Law, Jurisprudence and Environmental Law, David is well equipped to comment on some of the most pressing debates of our time. 
Also this week, Peter discusses some of the correspondence sent th...

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In the middle of a cost of living crisis, key economic indicators are more important to track than ever. This week on Taxpayer Talk, host Peter Williams sits down with Dr Christoph Schumacher, Professor of Innovation & Economics and Director of the Knowledge Exchange Hub at Massey University. Dr Schumacher and the Knowledge Exchange Hub have developed a tool that tracks Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in real time to monitor how t...

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On this week's episode of Taxpayer Talk, host Peter Williams is joined by Eric Crampton, Chief Economist at the New Zealand Initiative, to discuss the Government's Three Waters reforms and his alternative proposal for how local councils can finance long-term infrastructure investment more effectively. Peter and Eric also discuss the Emissions Trading Scheme and outline why additional emissions reduction measures beyond th...

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In the wake of the Queen’s passing, the latest edition of Taxpayer Talk focuses on the British Monarchy. Host Peter Williams is joined by Canadian-born, Australian domiciled law Professor James Allan who reflects on why the British Monarchy is the most successful anywhere and why having a queen or king on the other side of the world as our Head of State is still the best system for New Zealand - and other Commonwealth countries.

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On this week's episode of Taxpayer Talk, Peter Williams speaks to Des Gorman - Emeritus Professor of Medicine at Auckland University - about a new paper from the New Zealand Initiative which claims that evidence for a separate Maori Health Authority is seriously lacking. Peter then reads your correspondence. If you'd like to comment on anything you've heard on the show Peter is waiting to hear from you at peter@taxpa...

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