Horizon Poll Shows National Voters Worry About Fast Track Bill

There is widespread public concern about the Fast Track Approvals Bill being pushed by the coalition government’s two cabinet ministers Shane Jones and Chris Bishop.

According to an article by Greenpeace, that concern has spread to many who voted National at the 2023 election.
Undermining of democracy and the risk of corruption are two of the major sticking points according to a new Horizon Research survey of the government proposal.writes Nick Young on the Greenpeace website. 
Other concerns are about the return of previously prohibited practices and subsequent threats to the public’s conservation lands and ocean.
Greenpeace executive director Russel Norman said the poll results shows the folly of the coalition government’s proposed fast track law.
On Saturday (8 June) Greenpeace is holding a protest rally in Aotea Square, Auckland and Russel Norman expects it will be attended not only by environmentalists but people from across the political spectrum who value democracy and nature.
“People are repelled by the stench of corruption emanating from the Beehive right now as there is donations scandal after another linked to the Fast Track Bill,” he said. “People don’t want to see rivers and lakes turned to sewers.”
The Horizon poll shows 76 percent of National voters are concerned about the environmental consequences should the bill become law. 
Forty-four percent of National voters are concerned that just three ministers will have power to decide on development projects, with few checks and balances. Fifty-three percent are concerned the Fast Track Bill could create risk that commercial interests, some who have made political donations to parties and MPs, may influence development decisions.

Footnote: The Horizon Research survey was carrierdout in late May with a sample size of 1,060 adults, 18 years for age and over. The maximum margin of error is plus or minus 3 percent.  Seventy percent surveyed were very concerned or concerned that the public won’t have the right to have a say, 66 percent were concerned at the extreme power, three cabinet ministers will have and 64 percent were worried about sea bed mining and 61 percent about mining on the public’s conservation land.

SQ River Jim.jpeg

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8 Responses to Horizon Poll Shows National Voters Worry About Fast Track Bill

  1. Frank Schumaker says:

    Shane Jones Fast Track Bill is akin to Muldoon’s Think Big National Development which spelt doom for the National government then. Prime Minister Luxon better rein in Jones and Bishop if he heeds the political lesson from Muldoon’s fate.

  2. John Mulgan says:

    In some ways politics is like physics. For every action there’s an equal and opposite reaction. The Resource Management Act of 1991 came as a direct result of the assault on the environment and democracy of the Muldoon years. To all you “developers” licking your chops at the prospect of making money from environmental vandalism, get ready for the RMA 2.0. You’re going to be paid back–with interest.

    Yes, this current group of Young Turks can bulldoze their way through 40 years of stare decisis, or legal precedent. In doing so, they reveal themselves as autocrats.

    Is fascism too strong a word?

    No. By reviving environmentally damaging projects already rejected by the Environment Court or regional councils, this government reveals a contempt for the rule of law. Shane Jones, Chris Bishop and David Seymour embody want to turn our democratic, capitalistic society into are nothing less than a kleptocracy.

    Whether you’re talking about Mussolini, Trump or our current ruling coalition, government always becomes a criminal enterprise when fascists attack the rule of law, democratic institutions, and the very principle of citizens having the right to question the process of allocating hundreds of millions of public taxes to enrich special interests at the expense of our natural heritage.

    Normal New Zealanders don’t approve of killing blue whales, Maui’s dolphins, Hooker sea lions, kea or, for heaven’s sake, our national bird the kiwi to make fast buck. Normal New Zealanders want clean drinking water and healthy rivers. We want to be able to swim in our local rivers or teach our kids to fish and occasionally take a salmon or trout home.

    This government is willing to sell off all that makes us unique. The question is, What are we going to do about it?

  3. Graham McHaffie says:

    New Zealand waterways are already being contaminated despite the current laws. The proposal for fast tracking will surely result in worse fresh-water quality. The proposal near the Pupu springs in Golden Bay (or should it soon be called something less than ‘Golden’ bay?) is of concern. Where will the poisons this mining will put into the environment go? Into the pristine Pupu Springs? I do not believe that a private company should profit from contaminating any waterway. Will this proposed bill result in more dairy farming which is responsible for contaminated waterways and minimal controls.
    What boundaries will be in place for the decision-making government ministers? How will they prove the benefits before squashing the “Freddy frogs” of this country?
    It appears that recent public service cuts (which I agree had to happen) will result in a reduction in data centres and therefore data availability. Will those cuts affect information on the benefits / consequences of fast tracking? Too many unknows in my opinion.

  4. Really the Gov General should “pull the plug” ! & call for another Election . How so ? the last N.Z. Election was purchased ? almost lock stock & barrel by the Overseas & Local Money Boys ! >> King Salmon, Atlas Network , Quarry & Big Tobacco Etc.

  5. Dave Rhodes says:

    I waited patiently for Luxon to make any firm policy statements on a wide range of issues. He seemed so “dull as dishwater”, with a complete lacklustre agenda and personality to boot.
    Whilst essential the other lot were removed from office asap, I could never find it in my heart to vote National again – so I opted for another of the coalition partners.
    Sadly, as expected, National are delivering most of what they didn’t promise

  6. Charles Henry says:

    The environment has always suffered under National. Plundering natural resources to fund their avarice and greed for Mammon. You can trace this back all the way to National in 1991 with the introduction of the original RMA. While noble in statements of intent such as introducing “sustainable management” as a key objective, it has been perverted over the years, mostly by bureaucratic “bloat” to become so unwieldy as to be now so counter-productive as to inhibit such sustainability.
    Looking further at National’s track record, one only has to look at the aftermath of the Christchurch earthquake and the ECan debacle to see the writing on the wall – nothing this National-led government was going to do would be to benefit the environment – no matter what the rhetoric.

  7. Pete says:

    Am very concerned that in the fast track bill it allows for fast long-term renewal of marine farm consents. This plus many other fast tracks are nothing short of smoking guns
    I watched the Marlborough sounds decline in its health when more and more and then more marine farms were introduced in short sighted fashion by council.
    To allow unchecked long term renewal without the need to prove environmentally friendly and sustainability is yet again very short sighted.
    Big business and money ahead of the environment needs to stop. So introducing this fast tracking is far from ideal
    Pete Watson
    Keneperu sound

  8. Wiri Williams says:

    I understand the frustration with wilful ideologically-driven ‘stymies’ to reasonable and necessary economic growth.

    But I look at the proposed all-powerful Ministerial triad and say to myself: if the last government, with their woke antidemocratic bent had introduced this would I be ok? Of course I bloody wouldn’t. So I have to object to it in principle for the same reason: politicians are only human and we need checks and balances of their power. All of the above not helped by the fact that, in the detail of the Bill, it proposes an Expert Panel structure at odds with the, I thought, agreed principles of governance of the new Coalition. Why the hell should all the proposed members of the Expert Panels be well-versed in and agree to the (still not defined!!) Principles of the Treaty, Matauranga Maori, Kaitiaka, and Te Reo. God knows! And so much for this Triad knowing what they are doing when they wrote this. An indication of the quality of decisions to come?

    Bill Floyd,

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