We're not that big on "to-do" lists. SWMBO has given up trying to convince us to make lists of the tasks that need to be done each day, and we just plough through the work as best we can.
But in setting a vision for New Zealand's future, John Key has compiled a list, although it won't all get done in one day; the Herald reports:
The Government wants Work and Income to cut the number of long-term beneficiaries on a working-age benefit by 30 per cent over five years, Prime Minister John Key has just announced.That would see the number of people on working age benefits drop from 78,000 to 55,000 by 2017.It also wants to cuts criminal re-offending by 25 per cent by 2017 and cut total crime by 15 per cent.The new goals are part of 10 specific targets the Government is setting the public sector under the programme called "better public services."One of the targets relating to NCEA was announced by Mr Key in March and some by Finance Minister Bill English in the Budget.Today they have completed the list.The welfare target just announced relates to people on unemployment related benefits, the sickness benefit, women alone benefits and sole parents and widows whose youngest children are aged over 14. All of those benefits will become known next year as"job seeker support" from July next year."These targets are not a wish-list," Mr Key said. "They are a to-do list."
Once again, National is looking to deliver on policies that were signalled well in advance of last year's General Election. Getting people off welfare and into work was a priority for the Government, and if the growth figure reported last week (the third-highest in the OECD for the March quarter) is indicative of an improvement in business conditions, then job growth is likely to occur. We're doing our bit; we have employed five new staff so far this year as our businesses have continued to grow.
And rather than simply throwing more money at problems as successive governments have done, the Key-led government is serious about changing attitudes and behaviours; this from the Beehive website:
Delivering better public services within tight financial constraints to New Zealanders is one of the Government's key priorities for its second term. The targets announced today will help deliver that goal.Mr English, who is leading the Better Public Services reforms with State Services Minister Jonathan Coleman, says this move is about making government agencies work more closely together to deliver the results that matter most to New Zealanders.“We want to change the way the public sector works so it is more focused and organised around delivering results, rather than just outputs.“We’re making public sector leaders accountable for achieving things that make a real difference to the lives of New Zealanders, not just managing a department or agency.“We also want to make it simpler for New Zealanders to interact with government. Doing business with government, and getting information from government agencies, should be easy.“This is a fundamental shift that requires different thinking. We are not a government that thinks spending more money on something is an end in itself. We are a government that thinks getting results is what’s really important.
There's a saying we heard a while back which goes like this: If you always do what you've always done, you'll always get what you've always got. That is so true; as we said above, successive governments have thrown our money at problems without addressing the underlying issues. John Key's Government should be commended for thinking of innovative ways to do more without spending more money, and for challenging the public sector to do likewise.