This note is not part of the order, but is intended to indicate its general effect.
This order, which comes into force on 1 April 2017, increases a range of benefits, allowances, asset limits, superannuation entitlements, etc. The increases reflect both mandatory adjustments and some additional discretionary increases. Where an annual CPI increase is required, it reflects the increase of 1.10% in the New Zealand Consumers Price Index from the December 2015 quarter to the December 2016 quarter, calculated for all quarters using the New Zealand Consumers Price Index (All Groups), excluding cigarettes and other tobacco products.
Annual CPI increases are required under section 61HA of the Social Security Act 1964 for the following benefits: former widows’, sole parent support, orphans’ and unsupported child’s, supported living payment, jobseeker support, former domestic purposes, the hospital rate, and youth payments and young parent payments. These increases are set out in Part 1 of Schedule 1.
Annual CPI increases are also required, under section 15 of the New Zealand Superannuation and Retirement Income Act 2001, to superannuation entitlements. Those increases may sometimes also be more than the CPI increase in order to meet the further requirements (in sections 15(3)(a) and (b) and 16) that the increases maintain a specified relationship to the net average wage and also maintain the proportional relationship of specified rates. The total of the increases required by both sections 15 and 16 is set out in Part 2 of Schedule 1.
The discretionary increases made under section 61H of the Social Security Act 1964 are in respect of—
the income thresholds for a totally blind beneficiary to be eligible for an additional allowance:
the rates of child disability allowance and disability allowance:
the abatement rates and income limits for the youth payment and young parent payment:
various asset and income limits that may be applied to certain assistance.
Increases to superannuation entitlements, which build on the increases set out in Part 2 of Schedule 1, are also made, in order to implement the Government’s commitment to ensure that the net married couple rate of New Zealand superannuation is set at a minimum of 66% of the net average wage. (The rates of New Zealand superannuation that are amended in all cases are the gross rates, but the increase has been calculated in relation to the net rate in each case. Single rates are increased consequentially in order to maintain the proportional relationship of rates.) These increases are set out in Part 2 of Schedule 2.
This order is a confirmable instrument, and an annual confirmable instrument, under section 47B of the Legislation Act 2012. It is revoked, or taken to have been invalid for past operation, at the close of 30 June 2018, unless earlier confirmed by an Act of Parliament. That stated time is the applicable deadline under section 47C(1)(a) of the Legislation Act 2012.
Date of notification in Gazette: 2 March 2017.
This order is administered by the Ministry of Social Development.