29 Aug 2013

Smith defends staying in ministerial house

5:52 am on 29 August 2013

Housing Minister Nick Smith has defended his decision to stay in a ministerial house after resigning from Cabinet last year.

Dr Smith resigned after failing to declare a conflict of interest when dealing with an ACC case.

Labour MP Trevor Mallard said Dr Smith not only benefited from paying no rent, but received free power, house-keeping, security, a gardner and a weekly laundry service.

Dr Smith told Parliament it was only while he found somewhere else to live and so his children could complete the school term.

Labour says he should repay the rent he benefited from, while staying on in a ministerial residence.