Nelson residents strongly support a publically-funded Fisheries Museum and Marine Education Centre, they oppose increasing NZ’s refugee quota and they are happy for GST to be added to online purchases from overseas.
These are the results of Nelson MP Nick Smith’s 2015 Annual Residents survey which also generated a spontaneous response from people wanting the Southern Link to proceed. The survey was delivered to all households in the Nelson electorate in October and attracted 712 responses.
Key statistical results:
· 71% Support the establishment of a publically-funded Fisheries Museum and Marine Education Centre in Nelson
· 68% Oppose increasing NZ’s refugee quota
· 68% Support GST being added to all products, music and films
Dr Smith established a Charitable Trust prior to last year’s election to pursue the establishment of a Fisheries Museum and Marine Education Centre in Nelson. "I’m delighted to see that 71% of respondents support this concept and public funding being put towards it. The trust has considerable work to do and will be encouraged to know the public is right behind them on this project.’’
Dr Smith was surprised by the large number of people who opposed any increase to New Zealand’s refugee quota.
“It’s hard not to be moved by those heart-breaking pictures we’re seeing of people fleeing the atrocities in their homeland, but the results and comments I received on my survey tell me that Nelsonians are wanting the Government to take a measured approach on this.”
The third question asked whether GST should be added to all products, music and films purchased internationally online. Interestingly, 68% of people supported this, even though it could hit them in the back pocket.
“I think people have become very aware of the hardship that local retailers are facing in the battle to remain competitive and these results are a reflection of that.”
The Government has moved in this direction, recently announcing that GST will be added to Netflix subscriptions, iTunes downloads, Steam games and Amazon e-books from next October. It is yet to decide whether this should be expanded further.
"These survey results certainly help guide me in my contribution in Parliament around the Cabinet table."
This year’s survey also included an open-ended question, asking residents to identify the one thing they thought was needed to make Nelson more attractive and competitive with other regions. The Southern Link came out a clear winner, attracting more than double the mentions of any other idea.
"I am not hugely surprised by this because it tallies with what I regularly hear during my constituency work," Dr Smith says.
"The momentum for the Southern Link road is growing. The establishment of the Progress Nelson Tasman group provides a balance to the vocal minority of opponents.
"The thorough report from NZTA shows the road will bring significant economic, environmental and safety benefits.
"This spontaneous response from residents confirms broad support for this project and that will be reflected in my efforts to move it forward in 2016."
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