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Ed Sheeran

Targeted Maori putea in $50m COVID recovery fund
Photo: Getty Images.

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The Government has earmarked $50 billion for a COVID-19 Response and Recovery Fund to invest in the economy and jobs.

Finance Minister Grant Robertson says the investments made in Budget 2020 mean unemployment can be back to pre COVID-19 levels within two years and the economy could start growing again as early as next year.

The Budget focus is on jobs, infrastructure, training and environment.

Training and apprenticeships in critical trades will be free, 8,000 new public houses will be built and the food in schools programme will be extended to up to 200,000 children.

$1.1 billion is tagged for nature-based jobs to restore natural landscapes, native bush, waterways and coast.

There is also more than $900 million in targeted Maori spending.

It includes a $200 million Māori employment package including a $50 million Māori trades training fund, boosting skills training programmes like He Poutama Rangatahi, Mana in Mahi and Māori cadetships.

Whānau Ora gets a further $136 million over the next two years to continue to deliver the support whānau need on the ground.

There’s an extra $200 million of funding for Te Kōhanga Reo, which will be used to upgrade facilities and increase kaiako pay, and a similar amount will go into other Māori education initiatives.

For the third consecutive day, the Health Ministry has reported no new cases of COVID-19.

This means New Zealand’s combined total of confirmed and probable cases remains at 1,497, of which 1,147 are confirmed.

Copyright © 2020, UMA Broadcasting Ltd: www.waateanews.com

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