Grant Robertson wanting to deliver ‘healthy looking books’ but don't expect tax cuts in first Budget – Jessica Mutch

It's Budget day with Finance Minister Grant Robertson set to announce the Government's 2018 spending plan this afternoon.

1 NEWS political editor Jessica Mutch says health, education and state housing will be the winners of the Budget.

Nearly 8000 households need help, as the government pledges to make the issue a priority in this week's budget. Source: 1 NEWS

Speaking on TVNZ1's Breakfast today Mutch said: "Grant Robertson is wanting to deliver healthy look books and keep some money in the books for things like natural disasters."

She said the likelihood of tax cuts is "probably quite low".

The National Party has questioned whether Labour will be able to deliver on its promises with leader Simon Bridges accusing the Government of putting spending on foreign foreign affairs before cheaper GP visits.

Finance Minister Grant Robertson will announce the Budget details at 2pm today.

1 NEWS NOW will have full coverage of the Budget from 2pm including a livestream and live updates.

Grant Robertson showed off the front page to journalists in Wellington. Source: 1 NEWS

1 NEWS political editor runs through what to expect in the Labour-led Government’s first Budget. Source: Breakfast

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For more on this story, watch 1 NEWS at 6pm. Source: 1 NEWS

Pre-dawn thunderstorm hits Auckland, westerly front could bring more this morning

Aucklanders have woken to a vigorous thunderstorm this morning as a westerly flow moves over many parts of the region.

MetService says Aucklanders can expect the showers and possible thunder to continue until midday, where they will start to break up into fine spells.

The chance of thunderstorms this morning is also moderate in the regions surrounding Auckland - Northland, Waikato, Coromandel, Bay of Plenty and Taranaki, as well as Rotorua and Taupo to a lesser extent.

The storms could bring localised downpours up to 20mm per hour, but MetService is confidence the amount of rainfall should not cause too many problems.

Going into the weekend, more fronts are coming in from the west and temperatures to drop somewhat.

Down south, there are overnight road snowfall warnings in place for Porters Pass and Lindis Pass, as well as the Crown Range Road.

For a full forecast for your area, see our weather page here.

At least 1300 properties are without power in Taranaki after lightning strikes early this morning.
Source: 1 NEWS


Reserve Bank closed in Wellington after asbestos find

The Reserve Bank in Wellington closed last night following the discovery of asbestos in the building.

A small trace of asbestos was found on level one of the building on The Terrace as precaution, bank Governor Gavin Orr said.

"Because of the age of the building, asbestos must be presumed to be present," he said.

"As a responsible employer and landlord, the bank has decided to take the extra precaution today of closing the building until it is confirmed that there continues to be no risk to human health, and any necessary remedial action has been taken."

It'll stay closed until air monitoring shows there is no health risk.

The bank says it's essential operations are being carried out in Auckland.

Pressure builds on the housing market as people are running of the fear of missing out and nobody is looking at the numbers anymore.
Source: 1 NEWS