Intended Housing NZ stock sell down

Kieran Trass made this Official Information request to Minister of Finance

Minister of Finance did not have the information requested.

From: Kieran Trass

Dear Minister of Finance - Bill English,

A) Have you read the legislation outlining the obligations of Housing NZ (HNZ)?

Your desire to shift the social housing responsibility away from HNZ to the private sector appears to fail to acknowledge or meet the legally binding functions and responsibilities of HNZ.

These are well described in the Housing Corporation Act 1974.

B) Exactly how does selling down a significant portion of HNZs social housing stock meet the legally binding requirement on HNZ?

"To give effect to the Crown’s social objectives BY PROVIDING HOUSING..."

C) Exactly how does selling down a significant portion of HNZs social housing stock meet HNZs legally binding requirement to "be an organisation that:
1) EXHIBITS A SENSE OF SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY by having regard to the interests of the community in which it operates"?

D) Has HNZ met its legally binding requirements to;

"3) OPERATE WITH GOOD FINANCIAL OVERSIGHT and STEWARDSHIP, and efficiently and effectively manages its assets and liabilities and the Crown’s investment"?

E) Has HNZ failed to adhere to its own mission statement?

By stating the private sector can do a better job at providing social housing, you are implying that HNZ has failed in its duty to adhere to its own mission statement. The Corporation’s mission statement is as follows;
"The Corporation provides access to decent homes, helping New Zealanders manage their own circumstances and contribute to community life."

F) What legal mandate does the National party have to sell a large portion of HNZs stock which has been built up and owned by the NZ public inter generationally?

G) Why was the proposed HNZ stock selldown not highlighted by the National government prior to the recent election?

H) Why was the proposed HNZ stock sell down not clearly spelled out in the National parties policy on housing prior to the election?

I) Assuming you do sell a portion of HNZ stock please explain exactly how you intend to measure the performance of the private sectors provision of social housing on an ongoing basis?

We all know the private sector won't do a good job because they must put profit before people - at any cost to the people - and the people we are talking about that will bear the brunt of private sectors profit focus will be those who need social housing.

You may also like to read the briefings made in 2011 and 2013 to the incoming Ministers for Housing,
if you do look at these publicly available online you will notice a large amount of information in those briefings have been "withheld to protect the confidentiality of advice tendered by officials".

J) What type of officials are being 'protected' by withholding information in those briefings?

K) why does the publicly owned largest single stakeholder in NZs residential property market (HNZ) need such secrecy?

L) Do you intend to engage any third parties to 'broker' the sale of HNZ stock and if so whom will that be and on what financial basis will they be engaged precisely?

This issue is of importance to the nation because Housing NZs asset base is a multi Billion dollar 'honeypot' as you are fully aware.

There is the opportunity for the private sector to profit confidentially and massively from the initial historic event of a selldown, to the tune of hundreds of millions, or even Billions of dollars at the publics expense whilst cloaking crucial information from the unsuspecting public with the tried and true 'Cloak of confidentiality'.

This modus of operandi has been used to successfully hide the truth from the public, by politicians, countless times and has made a mockery of the Official Information Act.

Perhaps you may want to review your and the Prime Ministers intentions for HNZ before this selldown enters the history books as just another political blunder that drove the needy and the public purse into further poverty with your name on it.

Yours Faithfully
Kieran Trass

Link to this

From: B English (MIN)
Minister of Finance

On behalf of Hon Bill English, thank you for your email. 


Please be assured that all correspondence is read and noted by this
office. Where the Minister has portfolio or MP for Clutha-Southland
responsibilities for the issues raised, a response will be sent to you in
due course. 


While the Minister considers all correspondence to be important, if your
email falls outside of his portfolio or electorate responsibilities, or
expresses a personal view, then your opinion will be noted and your
correspondence may be transferred to another office or there may be no
further response to you.


Thank you for taking the time to write.



Link to this

From: B English (MIN)
Minister of Finance

Dear Kieran Trass

On behalf of the Hon Bill English, Minister of Finance, I acknowledge receipt of your recent email.

Your request was received in this office on 28 October 2014 and will be responded to under the provisions of the Official Information Act.

Yours sincerely

Katy Greco-Ainslie
Private Secretary

show quoted sections

Link to this

From: B English (MIN)
Minister of Finance

Attachment Kieran Trass.pdf
362K Download View as HTML

Letter from Hon Bill English, Minister of Finance attached.

Katy Greco-Ainslie
Private Secretary to Hon Bill English
Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Finance and
Minister Responsible for Housing New Zealand Corporation

The information contained in this email is privileged and confidential and intended for the addressee only. If you are not the intended recipient, you are asked to respect that confidentiality and not disclose, copy or make use of its contents. If received in error you are asked to destroy this email and contact the sender immediately. Your assistance is appreciated.

show quoted sections

Link to this

Kieran Trass left an annotation ()

Whitewashed yet again by Bill English refusing to answer most of the questions, there is no democracy in New Zealand.

Link to this

Things to do with this request

Minister of Finance only: