Budget 2021 for Māori: Billion-dollar package invests in housing, health authority

Budget 2021 is delivering a package for Māori worth more than $1 billion, including $380 million for housing and $100 million to establish the Māori Health Authority.

In March, the Government announced a range of housing measures intended to tilt the market away from property investors and towards first-home buyers. It included a $3.8 billion Housing Acceleration Fund to fund key infrastructure as well as changes to the Brightline Test.

But it didn’t include any funding specifically for Māori housing.

Budget 2021, however, includes $380 million to deliver 1000 additional new houses, which will be a range of papakāinga housing, affordable rentals, transitional housing and owner-occupied housing. The quality of about 700 Māori-owned homes will be improved through repairs led by Te Puni Kokiri. 

The Government is also setting aside $350 million from the Housing Acceleration Fund to be targeted towards investment in infrastructure to support Māori and iwi providers build homes.

"This ring-fencing of the Housing Acceleration Fund will ensure opportunities to build housing for Māori can get underway faster," says Housing Minister Megan Woods.

Budget 2021’s Māori package, which is in excess of $1 billion, also includes $98.1 million for the establishment of the Māori Health Authority announced by the Government earlier this year.

There’s also $17.8 million to support iwi/Māori partnership boards and $126.8 million for Hauora Māori programmes run by the Māori Health Authority.

Budget 2021 for Māori: Billion-dollar package invests in housing, health authority
Photo credit: Newshub.

"Health and housing has always been our top priority and these funds will help get better health outcomes for our people and enable us to partner with Māori from across the regions to build a suite of housing solutions for Māori on the ground," Associate Māori Housing and Maori Health Minister Peeni Henare says.

Among the other key components of the Māori Budget package are:

  • $23.4 million from Vote Oranga Tamariki to help tamariki and whānau in the greatest need
  • $150 million in Māori Education, including $20 million to support Māori boarding schools and $77 million to build and expand schools delivering Māori medium education
  • $14.8 million to help achieve the goal of one million New Zealanders being able to speak basic te reo Māori by 2040
  • $42 million to build a sustainable Māori media sector and invest in programme content