NewsRoom Digest: Top NZ News Items for July 17, 2015

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Newsroom Digest

This edition of NewsRoom_Digest contains 5 media release snippets and 3 links for the day of Friday 17th July.

Top stories in the current news cycle includes a Northland farming organisation alleging that banks have quietly started to force debt-ridden farmers to quit by refusing to re-finance their loans, the latest job advertising data which suggests employers are thinking twice about hiring new staff and an assertion from private prison operator Serco is confident it is fulfilling its contract despite videos of organised fights in Mt Eden prison surfaced online.

SNIPPETS OF THE DAY

* Politics 

Failure Of Prison Privatisation: Footage of prison fight clubs is yet another example of major flaws in National’s prison privatisation plan, said the Green Party today. Footage on social media of prisoners engaging in one-on-one fights at the privately-run prison, Mt Eden Corrections Facility, emerged yesterday. The video was taken on cell phones, which are contraband, and then uploaded to social media.

Benefit Numbers No Reason To Celebrate : The latest figures from the Government about getting people off benefits don’t translate into more jobs for New Zealanders, the Green Party says. Benefit numbers from the Government show that although fewer people are receiving welfare, the number of cancelled benefits as a result of “Obtained Work” has also dropped.

$100m-Plus Deal Signed: A contract has been signed with the consortium Interlink which will provide over $100 million worth of modern, multi-purpose, transportable classrooms over ten years, says Associate Education Minister Nikki Kaye. “This contract will deliver at least 50 transportable classrooms each year to schools around New Zealand, but is designed to deliver more if required,” says Ms Kaye.

* Business 

Simplifying Tax For Small Business supported: Now that the four biggest parties in Parliament agree on the way forward, it’s time for the Government to get on with simplifying provisional tax for small businesses, the Green Party said today. “The Green Party has been talking about simplifying provisional tax for small businesses, like Labour suggested today, since before the 2011 election,” Green Party Co-leader James Shaw said.

* Primary Industries 

New Zealand Agriculture : “New Zealand’s capacity to increase production is constrained by pasture-based production and dependent on climatic conditions – the long run average increase in production only around 2% per annum,” said Minister of Trade Tim Groser while in Ireland . “In today’s agricultural trade environment, an EU-New Zealand FTA is about opportunities for partnership and collaboration in meeting these increased global demands for high quality foodstuffs”.

LINKS OF THE DAY

GENDER IDENTITY STANDARD WORLD-FIRST IN NZ: ‘Gender diverse’ will join ‘male’ and ‘female’ categories in a new gender-identity classification released today by Statistics New Zealand. This new classification records the identity of all people, including those who see themselves as different from male or female, and forms an integral part of the Statistical Standard for Gender Identity. Read more here: http://www.stats.govt.nz/methods/classifications-and-standards/classification-related-stats-standards/gender-identity.aspx

JOB ADS DECLINE: Demand for labour continues to ease nationally, but is growing in Auckland and Hawke’s Bay, according to the latest ANZ job advertising data. Download the ANZ report here:http://www.anz.co.nz/resources/8/e/8e587441-fa33-43dd-9157-26c275fbddc1/ANZ-JobAds-20150717.pdf?MOD=AJPERES

BENEFIT DATA LOWEST: Social Development Minister Anne Tolley says the latest benefit figures show the number of people receiving welfare is the lowest for any June quarter since before the Global Financial Crisis. The latest benefit data is available at: http://www.msd.govt.nz/about-msd-and-our-work/publications-resources/statistics/benefit/index.html

And that’s our sampling of the day that was on Friday 17th July 2015.

Brought to EveningReport by Newsroom Digest.

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Selwyn Manning, BCS (Hons.) MCS (Hons.) is an investigative political journalist with 23 years media experience. He specializes in reportage and analysis of socioeconomics, politics, foreign affairs, and security/intelligence issues. Selwyn has extensive experience as a commentator and has provided live political analysis to a wide range of television and radio organizations broadcasting in New Zealand, Australia and globally including the BBC (Five Live, London) and BBC (World Service). He is currently a correspondent to Australia's FiveAA radio, and is a regular live-on-air panelist on Radio New Zealand's The Panel with broadcaster Jim Mora.

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