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Winter Energy Payment change costs taxpayer $70 million

Press Release – New Zealand Taxpayers’ Union

The Governments decision to automatically enroll superannuitants in their Winter Fuel Policy, rather than require them to opt in, comes at cost of nearly $70 million, says the New Zealand Taxpayers Union.Winter Energy Payment change costs taxpayer $70 million

24 JANUARY 2018
The Government’s decision to automatically enroll superannuitants in their Winter Fuel Policy, rather than require them to opt in, comes at cost of nearly $70 million, says the New Zealand Taxpayers’ Union.

Taxpayers’ Union Economist Joe Ascroft says “Labour campaigned on requiring superannuitants to opt in to their proposed winter energy payment, and in line with take-up of the Independent Earner Tax Credit, expected 80% to opt-in, at a total cost of $374 million. You would expect the 20% not taking up the payment to be the wealthiest superannuitants who don’t see the paperwork involved worth their time.”

“However, after combing through the Half Year Economic and Fiscal Update, we discovered the policy had changed. Now all superannuitants will be automatically enrolled for the Winter Energy Payment, whether they need it or not. As a result, the cost of policy jumped by nearly $70 million.”

“Handing out $70 million to rich-listers and property investors is a huge waste of money. Labour clearly knew this, which is why they campaigned on an opt-in system. Why did they change their mind?”

ENDS

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