22 May 2009

Morning Report: local papers

6:10 am on 22 May 2009

Friday's papers: runaway pair may have up to $6 million; electricity companies not to raise their prices; an opponent of new power scheme on the lower Waitaki River is withdrawing its opposition.

The New Zealand Herald says Rotorua runaways Leo Gao and his girlfriend Cara Young could have escaped with as much as $6 million.

He had asked for a $10 thousand overdraft - instead Westpac gave him $10 million.

Also on the front page: Energy Minister Gerry Brownlee is "advising" electricity companies not to raise their prices while the Government considers a report they have been overcharging, perhaps by more than $4 billion.

The Dominion Post leads with the power story: Meridian Energy and Contact Energy say they have no plans to raise prices, while consumer groups have called for government regulation to stop unethical 'gouging' practices.

A comeback could be on the cards for Georgie Pie. Best known for its $1 pie deals, the chain is being talked up by its new owners more than a decade after it failed.

The Dominion Post has come to the rescue of Captain Hurricane and will fly the mascot to a semi final rugby showdown with the Chiefs in Hamilton on Friday night.

In The Press: Energy Minister Gerry Brownlee says the Government is prepared to make big changes to the electricity industry to stop massive price rises.

Christchurch, described as the country's safest major city, now has the most security cameras.

Police and Christchurch City Council have unveiled 25 hi-tech cameras to monitor crime spots in the central city.

The Otago Daily Times reports opponents of a stalled plan to operate a gold mine at Earnscleugh, in Central Otago, are upset to learn the mine is now expected to be operational within months.

A second major opponent of a new $900 million power scheme on the lower Waitaki River is withdrawing its opposition after reaching an agreement with Meridian Energy.