22 Nov 2011

Morning Report: local papers

7:02 am on 22 November 2011

Tuesday's headlines: Six Hamilton girls taken to hospital after taking tainted Ecstasy pills at school; Thames residents to be tested for arsenic contamination; bitter row over future of Christchurch Cathedral.

NZ Herald

The New Zealand Herald leads with the story of six Hamilton schoolgirls, the youngest only 13, who were taken to hospital after taking tainted Ecstasy pills at school.

They were so aggressive that the hospital had to call security guards to control them.

Monday's wild weather wreaked havoc across the country, with one Wairarapa couple lucky to be alive after a large branch fell on them near Greytown.

Waikato Times

The Waikato Times says the drug overdoses are yet another high-profile incident to shed a negative light on Fairfield College, and police are now investigating.

Hundreds of Thames residents are to be tested for arsenic contamination after soil on 212 properties was found to contain up to 235 times the safe limit of the toxin.

Dominion Post

The Dominion Post says police are warning that grossly intoxicated young women, some incontinent and smeared in their own blood, were symptomatic of a 'feral' drinking culture at the Toast Martinborough wine festival.

The paper's political staff say Labour's Phil Goff has had a boost in the final days of the election campaign, being judged the winner of the leaders' debate on Monday night by TV3's 'worm.'

However, a comment piece says that while Mr Goff put up a strong performance, it was no game changer against John Key.

The Press

The Press says National is set for three more years of fighting with education unions if it is re-elected, with its education policy being panned within hours of release.

Sharing top billing on the front page is a dispute over Hayley Westenra's concert tour. The paper's senior reviewer describes her performance as bland and lacking in musical insights.

Private emails have exposed a bitter row over the future of Christchurch Cathedral.

Hundreds of pages obtained under the Official Information Act detail a fight between Christchurch City Council and cathedral leaders over the future of the damaged building.

ODT

The Otago Daily Times reports a woollen mill is to close in Milton with the loss of 28 jobs.

QualitYarns NZ employees were issued with redundancy notices on Friday. The mill once produced the first Swanndri shirts.

Oamaru motor body builder Rod Tempero is pictured with his pride and joy: a completely restored rare Maserati, worth about $1 million.