New Zealand Parliament Buildings, Wellington, New Zealand.
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Editor’s Note: Here below is a list of the main issues currently under discussion in New Zealand and links to media coverage.

New Zealand Parliament Buildings, Wellington, New Zealand.

Today’s content

Political donations
Toby Manhire (Spinoff): Dirty Politics déjà vu as Peters says ‘we took the photographs’ on attack blog
Richard Harman (Politik): NZ First’s Grey area. Strange goings on in Tauranga
Thomas Manch (Stuff): Deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters confirms, then denies involvement in photographing reporters
TVNZ: ‘No interest’ – Winston Peters backtracks on photos taken of journalists investigating NZ First Foundation
RNZ: Winston Peters on photos of reporters: ‘We took the photographs’
Tema Hemi (Māori TV): The ‘SFO wont be calling me up’ – Winston Peters
Bronson Perich (Māori TV): Winston Peters alleges ‘someone has stolen information’
Barry Soper (Newstalk ZB): Winston Peters’ Trumpian moment
Brent Edwards (NBR): Political donations scandals overshadow election (paywalled)
David Farrar: Has Jacinda read her own coalition agreement?

1 NEWS Colmar Brunton poll
TVNZ: 1 NEWS Colmar Brunton poll: National and ACT hold the numbers to form a government
TVNZ: Election 2020: First 1 NEWS Colmar Brunton poll of the year shows tight race ahead
Barry Soper (Newstalk ZB): Tight poll promises a lively election race
Thomas Manch (Stuff): New poll puts National ahead, and Northland could be the decider
Derek Cheng (Herald): 2020 election may hinge on single electorate seat – poll
RNZ: New political poll shows National scraping into power and NZ First out of Parliament
Martyn Bradbury (Daily Blog): Who is going to take responsibility for the Greens plummeting to 5%?

Housing
Henry Cooke (Stuff): Government defends charging rent for emergency motel stays
Herald Editorial: Is this enough for NZ’s roofless? (paywalled)
No Right Turn: Labour’s festering Neoliberalism
Martyn Bradbury (Daily Blog): Wait, WHAT? Labour’s Homelessness ‘policy’ is to charge those in emergency housing 25% rent???
Jenée Tibshraeny (Interest): Govt to start charging people it houses in motels
Ben Leahy (Herald): PM Jacinda Ardern announces $300m boost to get homeless into better accommodation
Sarah Robson (RNZ): Government announces $300m homelessness action plan
Hannah Kronast (Newshub): Government announces $300 million plan to combat homelessness
Stephen Forbes (Stuff): PM Jacinda Ardern announces $300 million funding boost to prevent homelessness
TVNZ: Effort to tackle homelessness sees new Government investment of $300 million
Jenée Tibshraeny (Interest): Government plans to buy and rent about 800 more houses, and set up ‘temporary housing villages’ as part of $300m investment to reduce homelessness
Ben Leahy (Herald): Govt should drive house prices down with new tax and borrowing limits: report
Phil Pennington (RNZ): New housing development authority accused of poaching council staff
Georgina Campbell (Herald): Kāinga Ora accused of poaching building consent council staff
Newstalk ZB: Women-only shelter for Auckland’s homeless on the way
RNZ: New shelter Te Whare Hīnātore, opens for homeless women

Rio Tinto
TVNZ: Government considers legal action after company reneges on deal to move hazardous chemicals from Mataura
Conan Young (RNZ): Rio Tinto behaviour ‘outrageous’, Environment Minister David Parker says
ODT: PM: Rio Tinto should show responsibility
Rachael Kelly (Southland Times): PM expects Rio Tinto to ‘come to the table’ over ouvea premix
Newstalk ZB: Government blasts Rio Tinto for failing to deal with hazardous waste
Reweti Kohere (NBR): Rio Tinto tight-lipped on smelter waste troubles (paywalled)
Dave Goosselink (Newshub): Southland residents outraged after toxic waste removal deal scrapped
Alex Braae (Spinoff): Deep dross in the deep south: Is Rio Tinto holding New Zealand to ransom?
ODT: Sound familiar? Rio Tinto considers shutting Iceland smelter

Environment
Jamie Ensor (Newshub): Conservation Minister admits Government ‘yet to reach agreement’ on major mining promise
No Right Turn: Another broken promise
Eric Frykberg (RNZ): Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment takes aim at companies getting ‘free ride’ on emissions
RNZ: Protesters set up billboards along Selwyn River over freshwater reform concerns
Charlotte Cook and Rachel Thomas (RNZ): Water quality ‘crisis’: Residents slam ‘tsunami of faecal matter’ in bay
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Jamie Morton (Herald): NZ’s Big Dry: Five key questions answered
Andrew McRae (RNZ):‘Driest it has been’ in some regions – meteorologist
Denise Piper (Stuff): Northland drought: Residents say council knew of water issues for years
Shannon Redstall (Newshub): Drought-stricken Northland town could run out of water within days
RNZ: No rain on horizon: Auckland set to break dry weather record
James Fyfe (Newshub): Not crisis yet, but Aucklanders urged to ‘be sensible’ with water use
TVNZ: Call for greater use of Marlborough’s Wairau River by farmers amid near-drought conditions
TVNZ: Total fire ban begins today across all of North Island
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Felix Desmarais (Stuff): Petition launched to give Lake Rotorua same rights as a person

Broadcasting
ODT Editorial: Merger misguided then, and now
Peter Dunne (Newsroom): Get back to basics on public service broadcasting
Jenna Lynch (Newshub): The taxpayer cost of ad-free TV1
Pattrick Smellie (BusinessDesk): Keep advertising revenue in merged TVNZ/RNZ, says TV boss Kevin Kenrick
Jo Moir (RNZ): Broadcasting merger: Cost is the great unknown for RNZ boss
Derek Cheng (Herald): TVNZ boss: RNZ and TVNZ merger could see more journalists, not fewer
Damien Venuto (Herald): Taika Waititi and RNZ Concert tell the same story (paywalled)
Press Editorial: A second act for RNZ Concert
Steve Maharey (Pundit): “It’s Not Over Til The Fat Lady Sings”: RNZ And Concert FM
Jason Walls (Herald): RNZ’s top brass feel the heat from MPs over Concert FM saga
Tom Pullar-Strecker (Stuff): ‘Misunderstanding’ with minister meant RNZ thought it had go-ahead for Concert consultations
RNZ: RNZ executives front up to Parliament to defend Concert restructure process
Sam Sachdeva (Newsroom): RNZ bosses face crescendo of criticism over Concert plans
Brent Edwards (NBR): RNZ says it is doing well despite Concert FM controversy (paywalled)
Glen McConnell (Stuff): What we know about RNZ’s planned ‘youth-focused’ station
Teresa Ramsey (Stuff): RNZ Concert fans plan protest show
Te Aniwa Hurihanganui (RNZ): Funding for Māori Television ‘inadequate’, board chair says

Coronavirus
Hamish Cardwell (RNZ): Pandemic expert says NZ too slow to act on coronavirus
Grant Guilford (Newsroom): Why travel bans won’t prevent spread of coronavirus
Bruce Munro (ODT): Global Insight: Could Coronavirus change the course of history?
John Lewis (ODT): Virus hits schools in pocket
James Fyfe (Newshub): Auckland primary school tells Filipino children to stay away from class amid coronavirus fears
Jamie Gray (Herald): How coronavirus has affected the New Zealand economy so far (paywalled)

Economy
Brian Fallow (Herald): Checking on the anti-virals (paywalled)
Brent Edwards (NBR): Monetary policy has a mate in infrastructure spend (paywalled)
Bernard Hickey (Newsroom): RBNZ chilled on virus, but not on wages
Michael Reddell: An unimpressive MPC
Hamish Rutherford (Herald): Growth versus growth – the problems with arguments about statistics (paywalled)

Child welfare
Rosemary McLeod (Stuff): Where is the justice for children? It costs nothing but courage to speak up
Ben Heather and Mandy Te (Stuff): Family not telling police ‘crucial’ details after boy critically injured in Hawke’s Bay
TVNZ: As badly beaten Flaxmere child lies in hospital, expert fears Kiwis are losing trust in organisations that could help
Newshub: Calls for reform on child welfare management after Hastings 4yo suffers horrific injuries
RNZ: Police warn against utu after distressing attack on child
Vita Molyneux (Newshub): Family of boy seriously injured in Flaxmere assault were known to Oranga Tamariki

Bob Jones-Renae Maihi defamation case
Meriana Johnse (RNZ): Sir Bob Jones defamation case: Renae Maihi overcome with emotion during cross-examination
Mike Wesley-Smith (Newshub): Emotional evidence given in Sir Bob Jones’ defamation case
TVNZ: Woman sued by Sir Bob Jones for calling him a racist tears up at defamation trial
Heta Gardiner (Māori TV): Renae Maihi takes the stand in defamation case
Stuff: Sir Robert Jones did not deserve a knighthood, defamation defendant says

Gangs
TVNZ: Winston Peters calls Opposition ‘lemon suckers’ as Govt challenged over gang member numbers
TVNZ: Police respond to rampant gang violence in Bay of Plenty with increased presence

Huawei
Chris Keall (Herald): GCSB boss Andrew Hampton reveals key concern with Huawei
Gehan Gunasekara (Newsroom): Forest missed for the trees in Huawei controversy

Health
Isra’a Emhail (RNZ): Cost of healthy diet and healthcare a barrier for disadvantaged people
Philip Chandler (ODT): Shrinks shrunk: ‘Basically half’ of mental health team quits

Local government
Georgina Campbell (Herald): Wellington city councillors told off for picking on each other
Skara Bohny (Stuff): Climate charter given nod in first Nelson City Council meeting
EmmaPerry (ODT): DCC to consult on playgrounds

APEC
Derek Cheng (Herald): SkyCity convention centre out for Apec 2021, but Auckland still set to host
RNZ: Damaged SkyCity convention centre ruled out as venue for APEC
Herald: New Zealand International Convention Centre fire: Fletcher Construction unlikely to hit Apec target

Justice
Marty Sharpe (Stuff): Justice Ministry to assess suitability of woman writing cultural reports
Zane Small (Newshub): Abuse survivor Ken Clearwater asks MPs to acknowledge male rape victims
Zane Small (Newshub): Lawmakers impressed after Muslim woman calls out rape myths

Telecommunications
Tom Pullar-Strecker (Stuff): Vodafone NZ warned by watchdog over misleading account credits
Debrin Foxcroft (Stuff): Telcos fined $121,500 for billing customers after contracts finished
Sae Strang (Newshub): Three telecos fined $121,500 for charging customers after contracts end
TVNZ: Telcos fined $121,500 for overcharging nearly 6000 customers

Sport
RNZ: Racing industry says they’re at low confidence
Jonny Turner (ODT): Turn it up! Tumult in the industry
Herald: America’s Cup: Questions raised over Team New Zealand’s new partnership deal with McDonald’s

Other
Te Aniwa Hurihanganui (RNZ): Moriori Treaty Settlement to be signed: ‘It’s been a long wait’
Dileepa Fonseka (Newsroom): Labour’s Louisa Wall faces challenge for Manurewa selection
Tim Murphy (Newsroom): When the minor parties roar
TVNZ: Paula Bennett reminds Shane Jones to keep things civil as general election campaign looms
John Gerritsen (RNZ): Schools counting the cost of donation scheme
Tom Hunt and Alison Mau (Stuff): Russell McVeagh sex scandal two years on. What has changed?
Felix Desmarais (Stuff): Defence Force seeks company to clear Afghanistan firing ranges
Ruby Nyika (Stuff): Waikato-Tainui and ACC announce $50m building in Hamilton’s CBD
Raymond Sagapolutele (RNZ): Pathways to creativity are closing around indigenous youth
Felix Desmarais (Stuff): Parcel of land likely to be returned to Māori at former gateway to Pink and White Terraces
ODT: Govt keeping in touch with flood recovery: PM
Sally Rae and Luisa Girao (ODT): Ardern recalls her days with possums
Danny Watson (Herald): A debrief from the celebration and sadness at Waitangi Day (paywalled)
Matthew Hooton (Herald): Labour goes big, National goes bigger (paywalled)
RNZ: Whānau Ora prison programmes funded by Corrections – Kelvin Davis
Tim Newman (Stuff0: White nationalist group vandalises Nelson MP Nick Smith’s electorate office
Mike Hosking (Newstalk ZB): Why I want to leave Auckland, ‘a city run by idiots’ (paywalled)
Simon Wilson (Herald): Mike Hosking’s Auckland road-cone rage – what’s really going on? (paywalled)
Mandy Te (Stuff): Union says Imperial Tobacco plant in Petone will officially close

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