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Editor’s Note: Here below is a list of the main issues currently under discussion in New Zealand and links to media coverage.

Today’s content

Budget – commentary and reactions
Henry Cooke (Stuff):Grant Robertson isn’t using this crisis to transform the country
Max Rashbrooke (RNZ): Robertson goes for repair, not rebuild
Matthew Hooton (Herald): Grant Robertson conservative despite huge numbers (paywalled)
Simon Wilson (Herald): Finally, a Budget for a ‘green and pleasant land’ (paywalled)
Audrey Young (Herald): Simon Bridges vs Jacinda Ardern over $20 billion blank cheque (paywalled)
Audrey Young (Herald): Grant Robertson’s Covid fund has political advantages (paywalled)
Chris Trotter (Daily Blog): The Day Labour Came Home
Bryce Edwards (RNZ): A Budget with big numbers, but little vision
Heather du Plessis-Allan (Newstalk ZB): The Budget is simply extending ideas
Tim Watkin (RNZ): Grant ‘Mr Lucky’ Robertson Gets To Be The Ultimate Big Spender, Keeping NZ On Life Support
Pattrick Smellie (BusinessDesk): Is it enough? (paywalled)
Liam Dann (Herald) Grant Robertson gets balancing act bang on
Hamish Rutherford (Herald): A sea of red, to save New Zealand from even worse (paywalled)
Stuff: Budget 2020 winners and losers
Luke Malpass (Stuff): Labour goes back to basics
Tova O’Brien (Newshub): ‘But wait there’s more’ Budget – $20 billion more Budget
Fran O’Sullivan (Herald): A spending package to rule the maul (paywalled)
Mike Treen (Daily Blog): An extraordinarily underwhelming budget
No Right Turn: The timid budget
Steven Cowan: A rotten budget
Thomas Coughlan (Stuff): What should the Government do with its $20b Covid-19 fund
Sam Sachdeva (Newsroom): Robertson’s huge numbers fit the Covid-19 moment
Bernard Hickey (Newsroom): Inside a $200b ‘rolling maul’ of debt
Grant Duncan (The Conversation): Will New Zealand’s $50 billion budget boost Jacinda Ardern’s chance of being re-elected?
Jonathan Boston (The Conversation): New Zealand’s pandemic budget is all about saving and creating jobs. Now the hard work begins
Richard Harman (Politik): Robertson’s “Labour” budget; borrowing the future
Brian Fallow (Herald): Borrowing to reach the other side (paywalled)
Ananish Chaudhuri (Newsroom): Budget’s worrying debt-to-GDP red flags
Brigitte Morten (RNZ): Businesses left all at sea over restart of foreign travel
Brent Edwards (NBR): Budget outlines borrowing and spending in response to Covid-19 (paywalled)
Martyn Bradbury (Daily Blog): Winners & Losers: The Mother and Father of All Budgets
Tova O’Brien (Newshub): Government’s $50bn COVID-19 fund 15 times what would normally be spent in a single Budget
Eric Crampton (Stuff): The vital investments Budget 2020 was missing
David Farrar: Scoring the Budget against my 13 principles
Spinoff: The great Spinoffhot-take roundtable
Newstalk ZB: Fran O’Sullivan and Shamubeel Eaqub weigh in on Budget 2020
ODT: Our budget panel
ODT Editorial: An opportunity to refocus and rebuild
Mike Houlahan (ODT): Economic growth moving into reverse
Mike Houlahan (ODT): Fuel for a long winter
Chris Trotter Is the New Zealand State Equal To Covid-19’s Economic Challenge?
Richard Prebble (NBR): ‘Recovery’ budget? In a pig’s eye (paywalled)
Jo Moir (RNZ): Parties look to secure wins from $20b ahead of election
Stuff Editorial: Government’s Budget a plan to navigate Covid-19
Matt Burgess (Stuff): This Budget could end up doing more harm than good
Melanie Carroll (Stuff): Budget 2020 put the spotlight back on NZ’s economy, but where was the tax?
Tamsyn Parker (Herald): Business welcomes focus on jobs but unions wanted it to go further (paywalled)
Josie Adams (Spinoff): ‘The right direction’: New Zealand unions on the 2020 budget
Duncan Greive (Spinoff): ‘The economy on life support’: Business leaders respond to budget 2020
David Hargreaves (Interest): Wrap up: Reactions to the 2020 Budget
Jamie Gray (Herald): Market verdict – More stimulative than expected, bond yields lift
1News: Govt taking a ‘borrow and hope’ approach to Budget, ‘throwing money around like confetti’ – economist
Newshub: Next generation will pay price as Government expected to post eye-watering deficits for foreseeable future
Donal Curtin: Fiscal policy does its job

Government on budget
Rachel Sadler (Newshub): Grant Robertson defends debt, says now is the time to spend ‘rainy day’ savings
Jamie Ensor (Newshub): Grant Robertson says Budget 2020 ‘most significant financial commitment by NZ Govt in modern history’
Herald:Government’s $50b Covid-19 recovery Budget biggest spending package in history
Jason Walls (Herald): Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern on Covid 19 recovery and Govt’s $50b response: ‘It will be painful’
Anna Whyte (1News): Economic outlook ‘painful’, but Govt has chosen to ‘sit up and act’, PM says of $50b Covid Budget
Hannah Kronast (Newshub): Budget will help New Zealand emerge from the pandemic ‘stronger than before’
1News: Winston Peters rejects ‘helicopter’ cash payouts to all Kiwis to help stimulate economy
Newshub: Why helicopter payments aren’t in the $50 billion funding
Stuff: Ardern calls Bridges’ ‘slush fund’ attack ‘cynical’
Herald: Winston Peters gets snippy with Simon Bridges haircut jab
Mark Quinlivan (Newshub): Winston Peters tells Simon Bridges to ‘get a haircut’ after National leader slams ‘pet projects’

Opposition reaction
Henry Cooke (Stuff): National says Budget has lots of debt without a plan behind it
Derek Cheng (Herald): ‘A tsunami of debt’: National’s Simon Bridges on Govt’s $50b Budget
Pattrick Smellie (BusinessDesk): Pet projects, debt, and taxes on the way, says Bridges
1News: ‘We needed a proper plan’ – Simon Bridges takes aim at Budget 2020
Brent Edwards (NBR): National warns higher debt has to be repaid (paywalled)
Matt Burrows (Newshub): ‘A $50 billion slush fund’: Budget 2020 is ‘very lazy’, lacks plan to grow the economy – National finance spokesman Paul Goldsmith
RNZ: Budget 2020 lacks accountability and effect, opposition says
Justin Giovannetti (Spinoff): A ‘tsunami of debt’: Parliament debates the Covid budget
1News: Opposition decides against traditional Budget motion of no confidence, citing ‘exceptional times’

Budget – Summaries, general
Toby Manhire (Spinoff): How the epic $50 billion Covid Response and Recovery Fund will be spent
Henry Cooke (Stuff): Government unveils $50b Covid-19 fund to keep economy above water
1News: Analysis: Political editor Jessica Mutch McKay breaks down 2020 Budget
Craig McCulloch (RNZ): $50bn rescue fund in ‘once in a generation’ budget
Charlotte Graham-McLay (Guardian): New Zealand budget: Robertson lays out $50bn plan to return jobs to pre-Covid-19 levels
Zane Small (Newshub): $50bn cash-splash includes wage subsidy extension, free trades training and infrastructure boost
Matt Burrows (Newshub): The nine ‘key priorities’ from today’s COVID-19 ‘Rebuilding Together’ announcement
Jessica Tyson (Māori TV): Kōhanga Reo, Whānau Ora and Employment major winners for Māori in Budget 2020
Rebecca Howard (BusinessDesk): Debt set to soar as govt looks to recover and rebuild
BusinessDesk: Government to borrow extra $50 billion
Jenée Tibshraeny (Interest): Budget: Extended wage subsidy, support for tourism, free trades training
Vita Molyneux (Newshub): Where the Government is spending big to rebuild New Zealand after coronavirus
Julie Iles (NBR): Export, infrastructure and environment loom large in Budget (paywalled)
Anna Whyte (1News): What you need to know: Budget 2020
Charlie Dreaver (RNZ): What you need to know
Herald: Budget at a glance – the big Covid 19 package and how hard has it hit
Stuff: Here’s everything you need to know about the announcement

Budget – Wage subsidy, employment
Tom Pullar-Strecker (Stuff): Robertson quotes two unemployment forecasts but economist fears Treasury is optimistic
Paul McBeth (BusinessDesk): Unemployment seen peaking at 9.8% in September
Anna Whyte (1News): Treasury expects unemployment to peak next month at 9.6%
Jason Walls (Herald): Government’s Covid 19 wage subsidy scheme extended by 8 weeks, now up to $14b
Tom Pullar-Strecker (Stuff): Government throws $3.2b lifeline in Budget to ‘worst hit’ firms
Anna Whyte (1News): Covid-19 wage subsidy boosted by $3.2 billion, extended for eight weeks
Vita Molyneux (Newshub): Wage subsidy extended to keep Kiwi businesses afloat
Bonnie Flaws (Stuff): Uber driver says the Government has looked after the worst-off
Aroha Mane (Māori TV): Wage Subsidy Scheme extension gives relief for some
Joel MacManus (Stuff): Hospo worker grateful for wage subsidy, but hoped for more welfare support
Jessica Tyson (Māori TV): Businesses and staff to benefit from extension to the Wage Subsidy Scheme
Collette Devlin (Stuff): More than $2 billion to get Kiwis into jobs post Covid-19
James Fyfe (Newshub): Government promises thousands of new jobs in regions
Paul McBeth (BusinessDesk): Green jobs, retraining, and wage subsidies ticked off in ‘jobs budget’

Budget – welfare, inequality
Isaac Davison (Herald): Beneficiaries and migrant workers left out in the cold by Budget 2020, advocates say
Susan Edmunds (Stuff): Budget 2020 has forgotten about the unemployed, advocates say
Sarah Robson (RNZ): Current benefits ‘not sufficient to survive on’, social welfare groups say
Mark Quinlivan (Newshub): Green Party co-leader Marama Davidson defends Budget despite no benefit increase
CPAG: Disappointed but hopeful 

Budget – Nature jobs, environment
Jamie Morton (Herald): Nature jobs for out-of-work Kiwis?
Olivia Wannan ((Stuff): Budget 2020 fails to tackle climate change, activists say
Marc Daalder (Newsroom): Trading coronavirus for the climate crisis
Anna Whyte (1News); Government criticised for lack of climate change funding in Budget 2020
Eleanor Ainge Roy (Guardian): New Zealand budget: $1bn for ‘nature jobs’ but dismay at lack of climate action
David Williams (Newsroom): Money, money everywhere, but not a drop of water reform

Budget – Trades training
Simon Collins (Herald): More than 100,000 students and apprentices may get free training
Simon Collins (Herald): $1.6b trade training package welcomed – ‘I’ve never seen anything like it’
Jenna Lynch (Newshub): New trades, apprenticeships investment ‘never seen’ in years – BCITO
John Gerritsen (RNZ): Trades training gets $1.6bn boost
Anna Whyte (1News): Free trades training for all ages to be rolled out in Covid-19 fall-out
Vita Molyneux (Newshub): Huge Government cash boost means Kiwis can train in trades for free amid rising unemployment

Budget – School lunch programme, education
Mandy Te, Bridie Witton (Stuff): Praise for free school lunch scheme, but questions about pay increase 
Isaac Davison (Herald): Free school lunches needed more than ever, principals say
Thomas Manch (Stuff): Free school lunches to feed 200,000 kids, as part of $1b Government support package
Amelia Wade (Herald): School lunch programme boost to feed 200,000 every day
Māori TV: 200,000 more Kiwi kids to receive free school lunches
Tema Hemi (Māori TV): Kōhanga Reo boost 10-years coming – Kelvin Davis
Bronson Perich (Māori TV): Kōhanga Reo aims to educate 50% of tamariki Māori over next decade
Mandy Te and Bridie Witton (Stuff): Government spends $813.6 million on education

Budget – Housing
John Minto (Daily Blog): Budget 2020 state housing rebuild deeply disappointing
Ben Leahy (Herald): Housing providers ready to build 8000 new public houses – but say more needed
Ben Leahy (Herald): Auckland could get 2600 new public houses to tackle homelessness
Anne Gibson (Herald): $5b housing spend up questioned after Kiwibuild debacle
Derek Cheng (Herald): Govt to borrow $5b to add 8000 state and transitional houses
Thomas Manch (Stuff): Government doubles house building efforts, promises 8000 new state homes
Greg Ninness (Interest): Plenty of ways to dice and slice in the Budget’s recipe for 8000 new homes
Catherine Masters (Herald): Relief, disappointments and hints of more to come

Budget – Tourism
Brittney Deguara (Stuff): Winston Peters pegs hopes for tourism on trans-Tasman bubble
RNZ Checkpoint: Budget’s tourism funding not enough – tourism leaders
Guy Williams (ODT): Support for tourism seen as lifeline
Grant Bradley (Herald): What Tourism’s $400m special fund, wage subsidy extension means (paywalled)
Brook Sabin (Stuff): The 2020 Budget is failing New Zealand’s tourism industry
Amanda Cropp (Stuff): Tourism says many jobs will go despite $400m Budget rescue package
1News: Government’s $400 million tourism boost a ‘beginning place’ for industry hit hard by Covid-19
Catherine McGregor (Spinoff): ‘An absolute crock’: Tourism industry rounds on ‘wildly disappointing’ budget
Grant Bradley (Herald): Pass or fail: Tourist, hotel and aviation groups rate the budget
Amelia Wade (Herald): Devastated tourism gets $400m but details are scarce
Dan Lake (Newshub): Tourism receives $400 million to help it survive COVID-19 crisis
Melanie Carroll (Stuff): Tourism package falls short of Covid-hit industry’s wishlist
Gareth Vaughan (Interest): Government to provide ‘protection and assistance’ to strategic tourism assets

Budget – Health and disability
Robin Gauld (The Conversation): New Zealand’s ‘catch up, patch up’ health budget misses the chance for a national overhaul
Hannah Martin (Stuff): Boosts to health boards, disability services in billions for health spend
Mike Houlahan (ODT): Health spend led by $833m for disability services
Felix Desmarais: ‘It will help us stay afloat’: $800m disability funding increase welcomed
1News: Disability sector delighted at $830m Budget spend, but disappointment for doctors, midwives and dentists
Anna Bracewell-Worrall (Newshub): Dentists disappointed by lack of funding
Herald: Cancer Society welcomes health funding, urges system rejig
Nicholas Jones (Herald): SuperGold cardholders get free health/eye check-ups

Budget – Tobacco
Herald: No rise to tobacco tax; anti-smoking group praises Govt
1News: For first time in years, Budget announcement doesn’t include tobacco tax increase
Rob Stock (Stuff): No tax rise for smokers in Budget 2020, but hospitality industry implores Government to cancel July alcohol tax hike

Budget – Māori and Covid-19
Vita Molyneux (Newshub): Almost $1 billion invested in protecting Māori in wake of coronavirus pandemic
Leigh-Marama McLachlan (RNZ): Māori to get $900m to deal with Covid-19 fallout

Budget – Defence
David Fisher (Herald): Defence spending locks in $1bn Air Force upgrade
Vita Molyneux (Newshub): New Zealand Defence Force gets more than $1 billion in funding

Budget – NZ Post
Tamsyn Parker (Herald): Govt injects $280m into NZ Post as service ‘no longer commercially viable’
1News: NZ Post, struggling even before Covid-19, receives massive Budget 2020 injection

Budget – Media
Gavin Ellis: Elusive ‘second package’ of media assistance
Colin Peacock (RNZ): No relief for under-pressure commercial media in Budget

Budget – Infrastructure
Hamish Rutherford (Herald): $3 billion for infrastructure from NZ’s ‘largest ever stocktake’, more expected
Emma Cropper (Newshub): Government yet to decide on shovel-ready projects as workers desperate to fill jobs

Budget – Other
Herald: Scientists welcome modest bump for sector
Collette Devlin (Stuff): Funding boost for emergency services, prisons and justice sector
James Fyfe (Newshub): Funding for pest control aims to rein in growing wallaby population
Melanie Carroll (Stuff): New Interislander ferries, more money for rail
Bronson Perich (Māori TV): Government allocates $213 million to get exporters back to work
Heta Gardiner, Jessica Tyson (Māori TV): Whānau Ora receives boost in funding to continue support following COVID-19
Mare Haimona-Riki (Māori TV): $1.1bil to Environment restoration
Bronson Perich (Māori TV): $195mil allocated to help Pasifika in Aotearoa
Jane Fraser-Jones (Stuff): A new lens for New Zealand’s primary sector
Herald: New Zealand’s law and order budget by the numbers

Coronavirus
Adam Dudding and Eugene Bingham (Stuff): Coronavirus NZ podcast: Winston Peters says China didn’t want NZ to go into lockdown
Jamie Morton (Herald): Why contact tracing tech isn’t so straightforward
Dan Satherley (Newshub): Does New Zealand really top the world in COVID-19 testing?
Reuters, Matt Burrows (Newshub): New Zealand’s GCSB begs hackers not to target COVID-19 research after Chinese accused of cyber attacks
Andrew Dickson (Stuff): Children with health conditions should stay home for now
1News: Helen Clark helps unite world leaders in call for free-of-charge ‘people’s vaccine’
RNZ: Kiwi scientist helps World Health Organisation in pandemic response
Teresa Cowie (RNZ): Lessons from lockdown: The changes we’ll keep
Southland Times Editorial: Let’s recognise social history happening
Eleisha Foon (RNZ): Mental health survey shows Kiwis stressed but will spring back

Level 2 law, restricted gatherings
Jared Savage (Herald): Police Commissioner Andrew Coster promises frontline staff will be careful in exercising ‘remarkable’ powers to stop spread of virus
Jane Kelsey (Herald): Govt’s urgent legislation tone deaf to Māori (paywalled)
Dan Satherley (Newshub): Covid-19 law isn’t the problem, it’s the interpretation – expert
Andrew Geddis (Spinoff): The level two law is necessary – and full of flaws
Bronson Perich (Māori TV): “We’re creating a Police State” – Alfred Ngaro
Martyn Bradbury (Daily Blog): Green Party all over the show on Level 2 Pandemic Powers – how about trying this instead
Kirsty Lawrence and Katarina Williams (Stuff): No charges after biker gang flouts Covid-19 mass gathering rules at funeral
Jordan Bond (RNZ): Funerals could take similar approach to tangihanga under new rules
Matt Burrows (Newshub): Health Minister grilled over why strip clubs can open at alert level 2, but not churches
Janine Rankin (Manawatū Standard): Churches unable to worship feel picked on under level 2 restrictions

Media
Luke Malpass (Stuff): Govt won’t bail out media, but Stuff has other dance partners
Colin Peacock (RNZ): NZME’s play for Stuff goes to court – again
Tom Pullar-Strecker (Stuff): Proposed media merger turns septic as NZME seeks injunction in bid to buy Stuff
Herald: NZME seeks interim injunction against Stuff-owner Nine Entertainment
RNZ: NZME files injunction over Stuff deal
Brent Edwards (NBR): Media’s conflicted role in Covid-19 coverage (paywalled)

Pay cuts – MPs and senior public officials
Damian George (Stuff): Law change lets elected members and senior public officials to take coronavirus pay cut
RNZ: Bill introduced to enable MP pay cuts
Georgina Campbell (Herald): Local government pay cuts only for those earning more than $100k

Employment
Catherine Harris (Stuff): Worker in lockdown: ‘How could I pay my bills and feed my family?’
Amy Williams (RNZ): Mitre 10 franchise owner and employees’ union at stalemate over wage reductions
Cherie Howie (Herald): Thousands of corporate workers to keep working from home
Amy Williams (RNZ): Jobless pilots swapping wings for railway tracks
Siobhan Downes Susan Edmunds (Stuff): Event Cinemas restructuring, expects redundancies

Parliament
David Farrar: The Manurewa fight gets legal
Herald: Act leader David Seymour loses his infamous lockdown hair
Stephen Forbes: Jami-Lee Ross’ battle for Botany continues with new party Advance NZ

Pacific
RNZ: Cook Islands keen to lose developed country status quickly
RNZ: Reservations about reopening borders – Samoa PM

Sport
Herald: Racing: Dramatic cuts to see closure of major tracks
RNZ: Sport support package due in ‘coming days’

Christchurch Call
1News: ‘We have much more to do’ – NZ, France commemorate one year of the Christchurch Call
RNZ: Ardern and Macron hail success of Christchurch Call

Other
Sam Sachdeva (Newsroom): Sensitive foreign affairs briefing published online
Victoria Plekhanova (The Conversation): Google and Facebook pay way less tax in New Zealand than in Australia – and we’re paying the price
Rob Stock (Stuff): It’s okay to be angry and grieve about Covid-19’s impact on your money life
James Perry (Māori TV): Community social services expect increase in demand despite Budget announcement
RNZ: Homeless man looks for positives from lockdown troubles
Jenée Tibshraeny (Interest): Are banks doing enough to cushion the Covid-19 blow?
Zoe George (Stuff): $426m loans approved to SMEs in first 48 hours under government’s cashflow scheme
Hannah Kronast (Newshub): Landlords slam ‘greedy’ corporate businesses refusing to pay rent
Ellen O’Dwyer (Stuff): Flagstaff residents slam proposed housing development
Susan Edmunds (Stuff): Homeowner paying $1250 a week rent because tenants won’t leave his house
Rob Stock (Stuff): Some New Zealanders have an untapped Covid-19 survival cash reserve
Laura Wiltshire (Stuff): Changing exam dates by 10 days ‘not enough’ NCEA student says
Dita de Boni (NBR): Too much market research stating the bleeding obvious (paywalled)
Allison Ballance (RNZ): Little bit of sea-level rise = lots more coastal flooding
Martyn Bradbury (Daily Blog): More evidence Labour will be hurt for not reforming WINZ toxic culture 
Dan Satherley and Simon Wong  (Newshub): Arsonists target Spark cell tower, customers lose service
Felix Desmaris: Rotorua Lakes Council will not release complaints information
Matthew Tso (Stuff): Move to acknowledge Māori history in new Lower Hutt street names
Jake Kenny Mat Kermeen and Tony Smith (Stuff): Former Kiwis captain and West Coast community leader Tony Coll dies

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