Just weeks after TVNZ opened its refurbished Auckland head office costing more than $60 million, RNZ (Radio New Zealand) has been forced to put its Auckland office on the market to keep itself afloat, says Labour’s Broadcasting spokesperson Clare Curran.
Chorus’ cut price approach to the ultra-fast broadband roll-out means telco workers will likely have to work for a company with a reputation for screwing down pay and terms and conditions in a hazardous industry, says Labour’s Associate ICT spokesperson Clare Curran.
“Chorus has sacked Downers as the major contractor for its ultrafast broadband fibre rollout in the lower North Island and brought in Visionstream which runs its business with high up-front costs for contractors, little security of work and exploitative contracts.
The National Government’s flaccid support for public broadcasting was highlighted last night as a Bill reviewing RNZ’s charter was finally passed after a seven year wait while the broadcaster remains severely underfunded and forced to cut staff, Labour’s broadcasting spokesperson Clare Curran says.
“The Government pretends to support RNZ’s role as an independent, commercial-free public service broadcaster but has kept its funding frozen for the last eight years, forcing it to cut staff and restrict some functions while it tries to adapt to the changing media environment.
The National Government has sullied New Zealand’s international reputation for openness and transparency, leaving us exposed to widespread criticism in a damning report released today, says Labour’s Open Government spokesperson Clare Curran.
“The Open Government Partnership report on New Zealand has found a lack of consultation and ambition in opening up the government, an action plan consisting of programmes already underway and not designed to improve government practice.
KiwiRail’s amateur cyber security left a test website open to the public where it was possible to book train and ferry tickets for free, says Labour’s Open Government spokesperson Clare Curran.
“KiwiRail left its test website open for anyone on the internet. On the site it was possible to make legitimate bookings on ferries and trains with a fake credit card number. It is remarkably easy for anyone with good technical knowledge to use the site to make free bookings.
NZ on Air’s admission that its budget is under huge pressure will be a concern to New Zealanders already disturbed at the lack of quality local television programmes, says Labour's Broadcasting Spokesperson Clare Curran.
“The National Government’s seven year starvation funding for new public interest television is eating into money available for programmes made by New Zealanders about New Zealanders.
Labour has serious concerns about the wide ranging and potentially chilling effect on the flow of government information following the release Beverley Wakem’s report, Labour’s Open Government spokesperson Clare Curran says.
“Today’s report by the Chief Ombudsman into the Official Information Act shows government departments are being encouraged by Minister’s offices to withhold material for political reasons. This is further delaying the release of information.
The loss of more quality current affairs television shows the New Zealand on Air funding model is broken, Labour’s Broadcasting spokesperson Clare Curran said today.
“A huge amount of public money is being used to prop up television executives’ expensive, commercial visions which offer nothing new to the public, while Investigative journalism and current affairs shows are axed.
Cut-price contractor Visionstream is trying to bring in offshore workers for the UFB fibre roll-out while at the same time workers doing the same job are being cut at Downer, says Labour’s ICT spokesperson Clare Curran.
“Visionstream’s contract for the UFB roll-out is being expanded into Wellington. Instead of looking for local workers they are applying for the right to bring in workers from offshore so they can pay them low rates.
TVNZ has finally listened to sense and shelved plans to axe two fulltime frontline news positions from their Dunedin office, says Labour’s Broadcasting spokesperson Clare Curran.
“The planned cuts to a news operation that covered 65,000 square kilometres of the South Island was short sighted. It is unfathomable that they would chop news gathering in an area bigger then Switzerland.