25 Jan 2012

Morning Report: local papers

7:46 am on 25 January 2012

Troubled Christchurch City Council to meet Local Government Minister on Friday; Otago Rugby Football Union to report a loss at annual meeting; woman drove almost 100km without her children after a toilet stop in Masterton.

NZ Herald

The New Zealand Herald leads with the death of a boy, aged three years, after he was hit and dragged by a van in a South Auckland driveway. The death was the second family tragedy in as many hours on Tuesday, after a crash in Waikato claimed the life of a woman and left her son, aged nine, fighting for his life.

The paper also reports how a woman was extremely distressed after driving almost 100km before realising her two children had hopped out of her vehicle, during a stop at a Masterton public toilet.

Waikato Times

The Waikato Times reports on the mystery sinking of a fishing vessel 90km off the coast of the Coromandel. It's not yet clear what caused the sinking of the Rebecca May from Whitianga on Tuesday, but an impact with submerged debris from the Rena has not been ruled out.

Waikato is home to the nation's hottest baches. Whangamata has again topped the list of most popular holiday spots, according to the holiday homes website bookabach.co.nz

Dominion Post

The Dominion Post pictures Kapiti Coast District Council chief executive Pat Dougherty, who the paper says has quietly pocketed a $44,000 pay rise. Signed off by councillors at a closed meeting, the rise takes his pay from $241,000 to $285,000.

The Press

The Press continues to report on the troubled Christchurch City Council and says councillors will meet Local Government Minister Nick Smith behind closed doors on Friday in a last-ditch attempt to save the council.

Mayor Bob Parker says the council is "standing on the edge of a precipice" after months of public squabbles.

The paper also reports that the council has called on the Government for a moratorium on hydraulic fracturing in Canterbury, after widespread community concerns.


The Otago Daily Times says communities across Dunedin will need to do more to help pay for projects, as the Dunedin City Council grapples with tight finances.

The paper also reports that while the accounts are yet to be finalised, the Otago Rugby Football Union's financial situation is 'tender' and it will report a loss at its annual meeting.

And bird poo deposited by protected red-billed gulls is costing the Royal Albatross Centre on Otago Peninsula thousands of dollars in clean-up costs each year.