18 Feb 2020

NZ First Foundation trustee was lobbying for donor

From Morning Report, 7:20 am on 18 February 2020

A lobbying firm run by a New Zealand First Foundation trustee pushed for a law change on behalf of a property development company, which then donated tens of thousands of dollars to the foundation.

Doug Woolerton took on apartment developer Conrad Properties as a client for his firm, The Lobbyist.

He was lobbying for changes to the foreign home buyers ban for Conrad, which believed it would be adversely affected because it sells more than 40% of its apartments to overseas buyers - mainly Chinese.

But the Minister in charge of the legislation, David Parker, and the head of the select committee, Michael Wood, say due process was followed and Conrad didn't actually get the changes they were asking for.

Investigative Journalist Guyon Espiner reports