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Newsroom Digest

This edition of NewsRoom_Digest contains 7 media release snippets and 8 links of the day from Thursday 28th May.

Top stories in the news cycle responses to Fonterra’s forecast milk payout for the current season and an opening price for the new season which came out today and more political sparring about delays in health and safety legislation.


Embassy being established in Iraq : Foreign Minister Murray McCully has announced New Zealand will be opening an Embassy in Baghdad, which will be headed by career diplomat James Munro. The New Zealand Embassy will be co-located within the Australian Embassy in Baghdad. Mr Munro is an Arabic speaker and former military officer who has previously been posted to Abu Dhabi and Riyadh.

OAG Request: The Green Party has asked the Office of the Auditor General to investigate what it calls “pay-offs given to a disgruntled Saudi businessman by the Government”.

UN resolution in defence of journalists: The United Nations Security Council has adopted a resolution condemning all violations and abuses committed against journalists and strongly deploring impunity for such acts. See below a link to UNESCO’s webpage dedicated to journalists who were killed in the exercise of their profession.

Reduced ACC Levies Online: ACC Minister Nikki Kaye and Associate Transport Minister Craig Foss say car owners can now visit the New Zealand Transport Agency (NZTA) RightCar website to see the reduced ACC levy they’ll pay from 1 July, when ACC introduces risk rating. “From 1 July, all car owners will pay a reduced ACC annual licence levy,” says Ms Kaye.

Increasing Parental Leave Payments: Paid parental leave payments will increase from 1 July 2015, Workplace Relations and Safety Minister Michael Woodhouse announced today. The maximum weekly rate for eligible employees and self-employed parents will increase from $504.10 to $516.85 gross per week. “The Government is committed to helping children get a good start in life and ensure that New Zealand’s parental leave framework better supports Kiwi families,” says Mr Woodhouse.

Law Changes For Accounting And Auditing Industries: Commerce and Consumer Affairs Minister Paul Goldsmith says new law changes will enable the accounting and audit industry to be more efficient and effective.“From 1 July, changes under the Financial Reporting Amendment Act and the Auditor Regulation Amendment Act come in to force,” Mr Goldsmith says. “These final changes complete a suite of reforms that ensure a more competitive and efficient accounting and audit market and mean that New Zealand businesses continue to receive quality independent advice.”

Unlocking Curious Minds: Science and Innovation Minister Steven Joyce today announced the successful applicants for the $1 million Unlocking Curious Minds Contestable fund. “The Unlocking Curious Minds pilot fund is an important step towards engaging more New Zealanders to learn about science, particularly our young people”. The fund offers two levels of grants: up to $20,000 for local projects, and up to $150,000 for regional or national projects.


MPs REMUNERATION: Details of the remuneration for Members of Parliament (MPs) following amendments to the provisions in the Remuneration Authority Act 1977 earlier this year are now available; see:

UPDATED SEXUAL EDUCATION MATERIAL: The Ministry of Education has released an updated guide for schools on teaching sexuality education. Deputy Secretary for Student Achievement, Dr Graham Stoop, says for the first time, the guide directly addresses issues of consent, coercion, and cultural differences. The new guidelines can be found here:

VETERANS RECOGNISED FOR DUTY: New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF) personnel who served with a combined Australian and New Zealand military unit in Cambodia in the early 1990s are to be awarded the Australian Meritorious Unit Citation. More information on the award, including Frequently Asked Questions, can be found on the NZDF Medals website:

COMBINING ACADEMIA AND ENTREPRENEURSHIP: Two lecturers from Victoria University of Wellington’s School of Design are demonstrating that mixing academia with entrepreneurship can be a recipe for success—and job satisfaction. Kah Chan and Dr Edgar Rodriguez from Victoria’s School of Design both possess a blend of skills that combine scholarly excellence with a head for business—they are able to come up with innovative research ideas and also have the ability to identify commercial opportunities. You can find out more about the Victoria Entrepreneur Bootcamp programme at:

PREGNANT AND STRESSED: Pregnancy can be a stressful time and, with this in mind, Dr Carrie Barber from the University of Waikato has launched an online survey to find out more about stressors among pregnant women. The survey takes about 20-30 minutes and can be found at:

UNDERSTANDING EARTHWORMS: AgResearch scientists are seeking farmer help to gain a better understanding of the distribution of one of the little known heroes of New Zealand agricultural production. Earthworm survey

JOURNALISTS KILLED IN THE EXERCISE OF JOURNALISM: The UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), which is mandated to defend freedom of expression and press freedom maintains a webpage dedicated to journalists who were killed in the exercise of their profession. It remembers their contribution to freedom of expression, democracy and peace.

PAN PACIFIC VETERINARY CONFERENCE: Research looking at the welfare outcomes of dairy cows on larger farms was discussed today at the Pan Pacific Veterinary Conference in Brisbane. A national dairy farmer survey conducted by Dairy Australia in 2013, revealed the average Australian herd size has risen 37% over the past 10 years and this trend looks set to continue with 33% of farmers surveyed expecting to calve more cows in the following year. The conference website address is:

And that’s our sampling of the day that was on Thursday 28th May 2015.

Brought to EveningReport by Newsroom Digest. –]]>



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