31 March 2015
April 1 changes to help families get ahead
Prime Minister John Key says Paid Parental Leave, the parental tax credit, the minimum wage and Superannuation will increase, while average ACC levies will fall, and more people will be helped in to home ownership from tomorrow.
“The National-led Government has focused on ensuring gains from our growing economy flow through to families and these measures demonstrate that.”
A range of Government policies come into force from April 1 including:
- The Government’s new HomeStart scheme to help around 90,000 Kiwis into their first home over the next five years.
- Paid Parental Leave to increase by two weeks to 16 weeks – and by another two weeks from 1 April next year.
- The parental tax credit to rise from $150 a week to $220 a week, and the entitlement increases from eight weeks to 10 weeks.
- Average ACC levies paid by employers and self-employed people will fall to 90 cents per $100 of liable earnings, down from 95 cents.
- New Zealand Superannuation to increase by another 2.07 per cent – meaning it has increased by 31 per cent since April 2008. This is double inflation in that time.
- The adult minimum wage to rise from 14.25 an hour to $14.75 an hour – a 3.5 per cent increase.
“These measures build on the policies we’ve implemented over the past seven years to help New Zealanders get ahead,” Mr Key says.
“Looking ahead, there are more policies designed to help families which take effect from 1 July. These include children under 13 having access to free GP visits and free prescriptions, and the average ACC levy for a private motor vehicle falling by around $135 a year.”
“The Government’s careful economic management is also helping New Zealand families in other ways. In 2014 we saw 80,000 new jobs created, and the average wage grew at 2.5 per cent compared with inflation of 0.8 per cent. The average wage is expected to increase by $6,500 to over $62,000 by the second half of 2018.”
“The Government’s responsible economic management is helping New Zealand families to get ahead.”