Dunedin MP gets shadow space role

Rachel Brooking on election night. Photo: Craig Baxter
Rachel Brooking on election night. Photo: Craig Baxter
Rachel Brooking could be looking skywards for the next few years.

The MP for Dunedin has been appointed Ministry for Space Opposition spokeswoman in yesterday’s caucus reshuffle of the Labour Party.

Ms Brooking, who also got the role of Ministry for the Environment Opposition spokeswoman, said she was looking forward to the challenge.

"I’ve worked in the environment sector for much of my life, so I’m really humbled to get the role.

"But space is a new one to me, so I’m looking forward to learning all about it."

Last week, MP Judith Collins became the country’s first-ever minister for space.

At the nexus of science, business and technology, it was an "exciting" industry, she told TVNZ.

It was also a growing one, but the government needed to ensure legislation and regulation kept up to date to support "this brilliant, high-end industry".

Last year, New Zealand launched the fourth most rockets in the world, behind the United States, China and Russia.

Ms Brooking said there was likely to be as "many environmental challenges" when looking to space as there were on the ground.

"But it’s an exciting industry, and it’s good that New Zealand is part of the conversation."

As environment spokeswoman, Ms Brooking urged the new government to "calm down" and not roll back the previous Labour government’s reforms of the Resource Management Act (RMA).

The Spatial Planning Act and Natural and Built Environment Act replaced the RMA earlier this year, but the new government has said it would scrap these reforms as part of its 100-day plan.

"The reforms addressed many of the problems of the RMA, such as the fact it was expensive, and not achieving environmental outcomes.

"It was a massive amount of work [to reform the RMA] ... I hope the new government is amenable to good logical discussions about our environmental challenges."

Meanwhile, MP for Taieri Ingrid Leary has the portfolios of Opposition spokeswoman for mental health and senior citizen issues.

She asked for these two portfolios.

They were issues that fitted well with her role as Taieri MP, and she wanted to see a "cross-party discussion" on mental health.

"But at the same time, I want to hold the new government to account.

"I see addiction as a mental health issue and will be advocating for appropriate health responses — amongst other responses — to make communities meth free."

Labour’s Opposition portfolios

Chris Hipkins: Leader of the Opposition, spokesman for Ministerial Services, and National Security and Intelligence

Carmel Sepuloni: Deputy leader of the Opposition, spokeswoman for Social Development, Pacific Peoples, Auckland Issues and Child Poverty Reduction

Grant Robertson: Spokesman for Finance, and Racing

Dr Megan Woods: Spokeswoman for Climate Change, Energy, Resources and Associate Finance

Willie Jackson: Spokesman for Māori Development, Broadcasting and Media, Employment, Associate Housing and Associate Workplace Relations and Safety

Dr Ayesha Verrall: Spokeswoman for Health, Public Service, and Wellington Issues

Kieran McAnulty: Shadow Leader of the House, spokesman for Housing, Local Government and Regional Development

Willow-Jean Prime: Spokeswoman for Children, Youth, and Associate Education (Māori)

Ginny Andersen: Spokeswoman for Police, Prevention of Family and Sexual Violence, Social Investment and Associate Social Development

Jan Tinetti: Spokeswoman for Education, and Women

Barbara Edmonds: Spokeswoman for Economic Development, Infrastructure and Associate Finance

Peeni Henare: Spokesman for Defence, Sport and Recreation and Associate Health

Priyanca Radhakrishnan: Spokeswoman for Conservation, Disability Issues, NZSIS and GCSB

Jo Luxton: Spokeswoman for Agriculture, Biosecurity and Rural Communities

Dr Duncan Webb: Deputy shadow Leader of the House, spokesman for Justice, Regulation and Earthquake Commission, Christchurch Issues

Dr Deborah Russell: Spokeswoman for Revenue, Science, Innovation and Technology and Associate Education (Tertiary)

Rachel Brooking: Spokeswoman for Environment, Food Safety and Space

Damien O’Connor: Spokesman for Trade, Associate Foreign Affairs and Associate Transport

David Parker: Spokesman for Foreign Affairs, shadow attorney-general and Electoral Reform

Kelvin Davis: Spokesman for Māori Crown Relations: Te Arawhiti and Treaty of Waitangi Negotiations

Tangi Utikere: Chief whip, spokesman for Transport, Oceans and Fisheries and Associate Education (Pacific)

Camilla Belich: Junior Whip, spokeswoman for Workplace Relations and Safety and Emergency Management

Arena Williams: Assistant whip, spokeswoman for Commerce and Consumer Affairs, Building and Construction and State Owned Enterprises

Phil Twyford: Spokesman for Immigration, Disarmament and Arms Control and Associate Foreign Affairs

Greg O’Connor: Assistant Speaker, spokesman for Courts and Veterans

Jenny Salesa: Spokeswoman for Ethnic Communities and Customs

Rachel Boyack: Spokeswoman for ACC, Arts, Culture and Heritage and Animal Welfare

Adrian Rurawhe: Spokesman for Whānau Ora and Associate Māori Development

Rino Tirikatene: Spokesman for Corrections and Land Information

Helen White: Spokeswoman for Community and Voluntary Sector, Small Business and Manufacturing and Associate Justice

Ingrid Leary: Spokeswoman for Seniors and Mental Health

Lemauga Lydia Sosene: Spokeswoman for Internal Affairs, Associate Pacific Peoples and Associate Social Development and Employment

Reuben Davidson: Spokesman for Statistics, Digital Economy and Communications and Associate Broadcasting and Media

Cushla Tangaere-Manuel: Spokeswoman for Tourism and Hospitality, Forestry and Cyclone Recovery