26 Jun 2019

Public Services to receive biggest change in 30 years

3:57 pm on 26 June 2019

The Public Service sector is set to receive its biggest change in 30 years, in an attempt to better unify government agencies to solve problems.

Chris Hipkins at Parliament 21 may 2019

Minister of State Services Chris Hipkins. Photo: RNZ / Dom Thomas

Minister of State Services Chris Hipkins announced this afternoon the State Sector Act 1988 will be repealed and replaced with a new Public Service Act.

Under the changes, boards will be established - made up of chief executives and relevant government agencies - to tackle the most pressing problems the country faces.

These boards, or joint ventures, would be accountable to a single minister and receive direct budget appropriations.

They would work to deal with problems such as child poverty, mental health services, climate change and the future of work.

Mr Hipkins said that when it came to complex challenges it was not sufficient anymore to put a single agency on the job.

"These reforms will make groups of chief executives jointly accountable for delivering on complex government priorities," he said.

A Public Service Bill will be drafted and introduced to Parliament later this year.