GCSB gets lucky in Budget 2010

The Government Communications Security Bureau’s been lucky this year, with its Budget up 19% from $59.142 million to $70.44 million. There is no Budget breakdown of where that $70.44 million might go. To make anything more public will apparently endanger our national security. A few months back I hit a brick wall when I tried to find out, via a written parliamentary question, how much the Waihopai spy station was costing the taxpayer. That was a secret I was told.

However, my comments, reported in today’s DomPost [not currently online], seem to have squeezed some information out of GCSB spokesperson Hugh Wolfensohn. I hazarded a guess that the GCSB might be spending more on processing intercepted communications for the United States – given the GCSB’s been recruiting specialists in Middle Eastern and South Asian languages.

Wolfensohn responded that ‘the vast majority of the increase was tied to the building of the agency’s new $90 million headquarters opening in Wellington in February.’  So, I’ll be putting in a further parliamentary written question asking how much this year’s $70.44 million budget is going towards the GCSB’s new building. Can’t guarantee I’ll get an answer, but it’s worth a try. Keep you posted.

11 Comments Posted

  1. So that’s where some of the education money is going – of course, sucking up to the Americans is so much important than investing in our own future.

  2. Aren’t we lucky to be able to suport the boys and toys? They dupe them that dueps us with such unthinking debt.

  3. Failure to deny is always a conformation.
    As Keith can tell you – there are a lot of pre-teens out there needing the most careful and exacting of examination.

  4. Hmm, seems to me that the Budget is anticipating the Search and Surveillance Bill passing unhindered through it’s final reading, which would require a lot more spending on functions that the SIS can neither confirm nor deny they are involved in ….

    Dig for victory, Keith, who knows what will be clinging to the roots of this particular plant? 😉

  5. Keep on with the questions, Keith, $70 million is a lot of taxpayer’s money to spend on secret stuff. What is dangerous about breaking down spending to some general headings?

  6. The Government Communications Security Bureau’s been lucky this year, with its Budget up 19% from $59.142 million to $70.44 million.
    Cool! 😉

  7. Well, we can guess some of it will be to cover the money your good-for-nothing goonball mates cost the taxpayer when they went on their lentil-fuelled rampage down south.

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