Thursday's headlines: Full extent of Government spying on Kim Dotcom is still unclear; banks chasing National Bank customers; taxi drivers in Dunedin using security camera footage against each other.
The New Zealand Herald reports on a woman and an infant plunging more than 20 storeys to their deaths, from a hotel in central Auckland. Police say they are not yet certain of their relationship and have not established how or why they fell.
The paper also reports banks are dropping mortgage rates and offering cash sweeteners, payment of legal fees and tablet computers as they go to war for customers. High on their target list are disillusioned National Bank customers, whose bank is to merge with the ANZ.
The Waikato Times leads with a family's dream of a fresh start in Waikato being left in tatters, after a fire tore through their Otorohanga home yesterday - the day they were to move in.
And Waikato's year of sporting domination continued on Wednesday night when the Mooloos ripped the Ranfurly Shield from the grasp of Taranaki with a 46-10 win.
The Dominion Post says the full extent of Government spying on Kim Dotcom is still unclear, but there are indications that internet traffic out of Dotcom's mansion was being monitored from early November.
The paper also features a picture of Backbencher managing director Alistair Boyce standing inside the charred interior of the old pub, after a second fire there on Wednesday afternoon. It's believed to have been caused by work involving a plasma or gas cutter tool.
The Press reports a 900 pupil school will open its doors in North Canterbury in 2014. Waikuku School principal Roger Hornblow said the ministry told him the school would be built ''as soon as possible'' at Pegasus. Mr Hornblow believes it is ''very achievable'' for the new school to be open in time for term three next year. The paper also pictures soldiers from Burnham Military Camp storming red-zoned buildings around Christchurch, as part of a training exercise in modern urban warfare.
The Otago Daily Times reports on fears for Otago Courts, with lawyers believing it is only a matter of time before courthouses in Balclutha and Oamaru close permanently. Taxi drivers are using security camera footage against each other, resulting in at least one Dunedin operator being fined. The driver was seen by a rival taxi operator over-loading a vehicle and was reported to police, who used the footage to prosecute.