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.  Click here to subscribe to Bryce Edwards’ Political Roundup and New Zealand Politics Daily.

Today’s content

Government management of outbreak, expert advice, alert level changes
Matthew Hooton (Herald): NZ is united on Covid – why a blow-torch on Government is still vital (paywalled)
Henry Cooke (Stuff): The target that continues to elude Ashley Bloomfield, and will keep Auckland locked down
Derek Cheng (Herald): Hospitalisations, fatalities and lockdown – the lessons from Oz if we fail to eliminate (paywalled)
Vaughan Elder (ODT): Warning: Strategy could fail
1 News: Auckland Covid cases may take ‘weeks’ to go down: Michael Baker
RNZ: ‘Low-trust’ approach needs to be taken to workers crossing Auckland borders, Des Gorman says
Kate Gregan (RNZ): Decision to test essential workers crossing Auckland’s border described as ‘ludicrous’
RNZ: New Zealand in ‘uncharted territory’ attempting to keep Delta R number below 1 – Covid-19 modeller
Herald: Auckland alone at level 4 – but for how long?
Thomas Coughlan and RNZ (Herald): MIQ system changes, case numbers spike but experts optimistic
Newstalk ZB: Shaun Hendy: Likely to be in level 4 for 3-4 more weeks
Herald: Auckland lockdown could last ‘three to four weeks’, expert says
Tony Blakely  (Herald): How we can get off this Delta hell highway
Jamie Morton (Herald): Can NZ ever reopen the bubble with Oz? (paywalled)
Karl du Fresne: Covid-19: how New Zealand compares with the rest of the world
Zane Small (Newshub): Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern fends off COVID-19 elimination strategy scrutiny, from NZ to Australia
Ben McKay (Canberra Times): Ardern bats away Australian COVID swipes
Thomas Manch (Stuff): National Party proposes points-based overhaul of MIQ system, challenges Labour to commit to vaccine target
Bernard Hickey (The Kākā): Dawn Chorus: Auckland faces four more weeks at level four
1 News: Bloomfield denies ‘poke’ at Chris Bishop as he confirms R rate detail on Twitter
Natasha Frost (New York Times): New Zealand’s Homegrown Hero
Daniel Dunkley (Stuff): What New Zealand can learn from Singapore’s Covid success
James Nokise (Stuff): Government’s unlikely assist from NSW’s daily disasters 
RNZ: Covid-19 outbreak day 16 – How it unfolded

MIQ, border, immigration
Heather du Plessis-Allan (Newstalk ZB): Chris Hipkins needs to use his power rather than rely on kindness
Stuff Editorial: Where’s the empathy for returning Kiwis?
Herald Editorial: MIQ overhaul long overdue (paywalled)
Mandy Te and Piers Fuller (Stuff): Overseas Kiwis ‘devastated’ after extension of MIQ freeze, Hipkins’ holiday comment
Dan Satherley (Newshub): Greens join National in calling for purpose-built MIQ facilities
Zane Small (Newshub): How National’s proposal to fix ‘broken’ MIQ system compares to Government’s solution
RNZ: National want zero tolerance for MIQ bots and points based system
Andy Fyers (BusinessDesk): The shrinking of the MIQ system (paywalled)
Gill Bonnett (RNZ): Almost 3000 doctors and nurses waiting to apply for skilled migrant residence
Newstalk ZB: Film Commission: Shake up of isolation rules could improve film industry
Stuff Editorial: Too many migrants feeling freezer burn
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Newstalk ZB: Deputy PM vows not to let another MIQ escape happen again
1 News: Mother of MIQ escapee, who called police on him, apologises to public
Herald: Parents of Novotel MIQ escapee reported him to police; mother apologises
1 News: Absconder’s bubble told MIQ staff man wasn’t in Auckland facility 10 hours after escape
Tova O’Brien (Newshub): Government failed to alert public alleged COVID-positive escapee was in community twice
Craig Kapitan (Herald): Man with Covid escapes MIQ hotel
RNZ: Police arrest alleged MIQ escaper in Auckland
George Block (Stuff): Man who allegedly fled managed isolation was given ride home by friend
Toby Manhire (Spinoff): Man who escaped quarantine livestreamed his arrest, shared anti-vax conspiracy theories
Eva Corlett (Guardian): New Zealand police surround address after Covid-positive man escapes quarantine
Anna Leask (Herald): Man escapes MIQ in middle of night, police told at 10.30am today
George Block and Catrin Owen (Stuff): Actions of Covid case who absconded from Auckland quarantine ‘utterly unacceptable’
Herald: Watch – MIQ escaper who ‘walked back to Ōtāhuhu’ recaptured by police
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Ben Strang (RNZ): Quarantine cases in Wellington can exercise, while Auckland cases can’t
Maiki Sherman (1 News): Head of MIQ sorry after Covid-positive family left for hours without food
Craig Kapitan (Herald): Family transferred after MIQ meltdown

Vaccine rollout
John Weekes (Herald): Six good reasons Auckland needs vaccines first
Hannah Martin (Stuff): 1.6 million more jabs to be done in Auckland before region is fully vaccinated
Adam Pearse (Herald): ‘Structural racism’ leads to inequitable vaccine rollout – study
Barbara Dreaver (1 News):Vaccine hesitancy worrying Pasifika health providers
Jo Moir (Newsroom): Green light for incentives to vaccinate young Māori
Craig Ashworth (Local Democracy Reporting): Māori-only clinics to bridge vaccine gap in Taranaki
RNZ: Auckland mass vaccination event becomes drive-through
Troels Sommerville (Stuff): Follow-up doses for mass vaccination event moved to drive through
Liu Chen (RNZ): MIQ worker vaccinated in China left in limbo: ‘Everyone was puzzled’
Lucy Xia (Stuff): Government not recording vaccination status of returnees, experts criticise ‘huge oversight’
Mike Hosking (Newstalk ZB): Simple question, where are the extra vaccines?
Catherine Harris (Stuff): Anti-vaxxers tried to stir up truck drivers to protest, union says
Scott Palmer (Newshub): New Zealand protestor Karen Brewer’s chilling threat as expert warns risk of anti-vaccination terrorism is real
Shannon Molloy (news.com.au): Countless anti-vaxxers and Covid-19 hoax believers dying from the virus
Brianna Mcilraith (Stuff): Anti-conspiracy group calls for censure of New Plymouth district councillor following anti-vaxx post
John Anthony (Stuff): ‘Genuine error’ led to incorrect information in Covid-19 vaccine ad, Government says
RNZ: Call for alternative to mRNA vaccines after healthcare worker’s anaphylactic reaction
Martyn Bradbury (Daily Blog): The type of State that would force an injection on an individual against their consent is no State to defend or support
Siouxsie Wiles & Toby Morris (Spinoff): How the world sped to the Covid vaccine summit
Ross Meurant (Daily Blog): Why won’t the government endorse the Sputnik vaccine?
Herald: DHB asks for removal of Facebook posts about walk-in vaccination

Health system
John Minto (Daily Blog): The most important lesson from the Covid 19 pandemic
RNZ: Auckland DHBs would need ICU nurses for ‘ideally a month at a time’
Danielle Clent (Stuff): Sending ICU nurses to Auckland will put pressure on other regions – union
Mike Houlahan (ODT): Southern medical staff volunteer for Aucklan
Rowan Quinn (RNZ): ‘We were all ready to put our hand up to help Auckland’ – Dunedin nurse
Stuff: Southern DHB sending back-up to Auckland
RNZ: More than 100 nurses, doctors ready to help Auckland hospitals
Stephen Forbes (Local Democracy Reporting): Andrew Little confident Auckland’s DHBs can tackle mounting surgery backlog
Michael Neilson (Herald): Concerns over dramatic increase in ivermectin de-wormer imports, a disproven and ‘dangerous’ Covid treatment (paywalled)
Cecile Meier (Stuff): Meningococcal deaths and hospitalisations could be prevented with free vaccines for young people
John Lewis (ODT): Pandemic led to medicine worries: study
Scott Yeoman (Stuff): Two public apologies: Bay of Plenty DHB chief says ‘no common themes’
Katie Harris (Herald): Lockdown another blow to already stretched eating disorder support in New Zealand
Paul Mitchell (Stuff): Ronald McDonald House puts families in hotels as Covid-19 restrictions impact hospital stays

Cases, demographics
Brittany Keogh and Torika Tokalau (Stuff): Covid-19: 84% of community cases were unvaccinated, 12% had one dose
Justin Latif (Local Democracy Reporting): AOG Church of Sāmoa cluster grows to 332, community braces for bad news
RNZ: Pacific health boost aims to meet urgent and sustained demand
RNZ: Pacific health, vaccination services to get $26m extra funding
Torika Tokalau (Stuff): Govt announces $26m funding boost for Pasifika vaccinations, support
Māni Dunlop (RNZ): Whānau Ora to receive $23m funding boost
1 News: Whānau Ora gets multi-million dollar funding boost for Covid-19 response
Herald: Spring Hill prison guard no longer a positive Covid case

Contact tracing, testing
Georgina Campbell (Herald): Auckland businessman says being a close contact is ‘a shambles’
Tom Pullar-Strecker (Stuff): No straight answer from Health Ministry on non-use of Bluetooth tracing 
Herald: Academics’ fears over contact tracing privacy
Dileepa Fonseka (Stuff): The issues with saliva tests, and why NZ’s rollout has been so slow

Lockdown compliance, enforcement, rules
Vicki Anderson and Hamish McNeilly (Stuff): Police investigating after student flies from Auckland in third lockdown breach in five days
Kate Green and Sophie Cornish (Stuff): ‘Level 3 is not level free’: Police unimpressed by some reasons for travel as traffic doubles
Herald: 114 cars turned away at Auckland checkpoints
Keith Lynch and Kate Newton (Stuff): Lockdown movement plummeted by just as much in 2021 as 2020
Adam Jacobson (Stuff): Disabled essential worker faces ‘hostility’ on Auckland buses

Employment, essential workers
Bernard Hickey (Spinoff): The case for mandatory vaccines in the workplace
Grant Bradley (Herald): Employment lawyer Jennifer Mills on companies’ plans for mandatory jabs (paywalled)
1 News: Ardern reiterates ‘be kind’ message after bus drivers attacked, abused
Taroi Black (Māori TV): ‘Pākehā customers’ abusing frontline workers
Mariné Lourens (Stuff): Letting company that underpaid staff keep liquor licences will ‘erode public confidence’
Melanie Carroll (Stuff): Retail NZ claim disputed that proposed parent-teacher leave is discriminatory

Wage subsidy, business, economy
Anuja Nadkarni (Newsroom): Shoppers report groceries more expensive in lockdown
RNZ: Credit scores remained stable in August level 4 lockdown – data
Bonnie Flaws (Stuff): National calls for small business rental support package worth up to $10,000 a month
Andrea Fox (Herald): Business chamber bosses to press minister Nash for Covid support beyond wage subsidy (paywalled)
RNZ: Businesses now have to reapply for wage subsidy scheme every fortnight
Ranjana Gupta (Stuff): How ‘tax forgiveness’ could help New Zealand’s many small businesses weather Covid-19 financial woes
Brent Melville (BusinessDesk): Rental support could cost ‘as little’ as $150m (paywalled)
Dan Lake (Newshub): New Zealand, Australia must ‘come to their senses’ and end COVID-19 lockdowns – Flight Centre CEO
Rob Stock (Stuff): BNZ, ANZ and Kiwibank waive contactless payment fees
Rahul Bhattarai (Herald): BNZ, Kiwibank and ANZ waive fees for contactless payment for SMEs
Tim Newman (Stuff): Big budget increases for infrastructure as supply chain issues drive up prices
Grant Bradley (Herald): Wayfare tourism company boss Stephen England-Hall on pathway out of crisis (paywalled)
Jamie Gray (Herald): Level 4 lockdown will set log export supply chain back 18 months (paywalled)
Sam Hurley (Herald): Frustration as businesses’ supply lines remain halted with split alert levels (paywalled)
John Anthony (Stuff):Tourism business owner with no revenue frustrated he can’t claim wage subsidy
Susan Edmunds (Stuff): Almost $1 billion paid in wage subsidies during lockdown
Karen Coltman (Stuff): Bars and restaurants ready to open safely at level 2 and raring to go
Rob Stock (Stuff): VTNZ has postponed 26,000 WOFs and 13,000 driving tests
Nile Bijoux (Stuff): Level 4 lockdown took a hammer to monthly vehicle registrations
Bonnie Flaws (Stuff): NZ Post limits parcel volumes to cope with an expected surge in demand as regions move to level 3 
Anna Leask (Herald): McWhy? Kiwis race to the drive thru as lockdown restrictions ease explained
RNZ: The Detail: Lockdowns and the lost tax dollars
Rob Stock (Stuff): Credit checks ‘south of the border’ show immediate recovery bounce

Parliament
ODT Editorial: Scrutinising our Parliament
Tara Ward (Spinoff): Politicians holding things up, ranked and reviewed

Inequality, charities
Chris Trotter (Daily Blog): Staying focused: Why Labour still won’t help the poor
Lana Andelane (Newshub): Salvation Army calls for rent freezes, Govt aid as demand for food and housing support skyrockets
Brittney Deguara (Stuff): Absence of free school lunches in lockdown a gap that needs filling, NGO says
Dianna Vezich (Newshub): Salvation Army sees 84 percent increase for emergency food parcels in first week of lockdown
Justin Latif (Local Democracy Reporting): Lockdown extension has South Auckland food banks bracing for increased demand
1 News: Concerns elderly people struggling physically, mentally in lockdown

Afghanistan
Peter Dunne (Newsroom): Welcome Afghan refugees, then reform the UN
Matt Robson (Herald): International law and the lesson of Afghanistan (paywalled)
Stuff: Afghans trying to come to NZ have made it to Pakistan 
Kurt Bayer (Herald): Private contractors could help extract NZDF interpreters, ex-Defence Minister says
Sam Sachdeva (Newsroom): Tampa refugees urge NZ support for Afghanistan
1 News: NZDF personnel involved in Kabul evacuation test positive for Covid
Thomas Manch (Stuff): Two Defence Force staff test positive for Covid-19 after Afghanistan mission, as Hercules leaves Middle East
Kurt Bayer (Herald): Two NZDF personnel on Afghanistan evacuation mission test positive for Covid

Education
John Gerritsen (RNZ): Devices in schools linked to lower achievement in core subjects – report
Lee Kenny (Stuff): Extra NCEA credits offered if schools are closed at least 20 days due to Covid-19
Lee Kenny (Stuff): Universities to offer rent rebates for students during lockdown
Kristy Frame (RNZ): Lack of fee waiver information disappoints students stuck in halls of residence
Herald: New Zealand universities climb in Times Higher Education world rankings

Primary industries, overseas investment
Susan Botting (Local Democracy Reporting): DoC mulls an appeal over controversial Aupōuri water consents
RNZ: Five more overseas companies approved to buy forestry or farm land
Herald:Foreign billionaire Furu Ding blamed lack of due diligence for vineyard’s failure

Local government
Phil Pennington (RNZ): Auckland water charge hike ‘absolutely unnecessary’ – ex-Watercare head
Wayne Maxwell (Kapiti News): Kāpiti Coast District Council chief executive Wayne Maxwell on the proposed Three Waters Reform
Steven Walton (Stuff): Covid-19 lockdown may cause $3.2m financial hit to Christchurch City Council
Moana Ellis (Local Democracy Reporting): Māori wards: ‘They’ve wasted our time’
Hamish MacLean and Molly Houseman (ODT): ORC strife: minister to talk to chairman
Emily Ireland (RNZ): Masterton civic facility: ‘Silent majority’ speak up
RNZ: Wellington City Council told to step up efforts to eradicate sexual violence
Sophie Cornish (Stuff): Wellington council plans to expand project focusing on improving safety in city centre 
Georgina Campbell (Herald): Wellington: 153 tonnes of recycling sent to landfill during lockdown
Ben Leahy (Herald): Auckland Council again delays CV revaluation due to Covid
Simon Wilson (Herald): New plan for Queen St – closed as a through route, with bikes on the footpath (paywalled)

Greyhound racing
Tom Kitchin (RNZ): Greyhound racing industry given ultimatum
Stuff: ‘Greyhound racing industry is on notice’: Grant Robertson says the sport risks closure without welfare changes
RNZ: Greyhound Racing Industry ‘on notice’ over transparency, animal welfare – Minister
1 News: Greyhound racing must demonstrate ‘decency’ of industry or ‘risk closure’
Newstalk ZB: Greyhound Welfare Manager says they’ve got a better system to be more transparent about dog death

Housing
Bernard Orsman (Herald): Kāinga Ora in the firing line over derelict, rat-infested property in South Auckland (paywalled)
Tom Kitchin (RNZ): Napier businesses complain of behaviour and vandalism at outreach centre

Other
Katie Harris (Herald): Nearly 30 children have died in state care in New Zealand since 2017
Graham Adams (Democracy Project): The battle over Plunket heats up
Geoffrey Miller (Democracy Project): Covid-19’s impact on New Zealand’s diplomacy continues
Chris Trotter (Bowalley Road): Not On The List
Chris Trotter (Daily Blog): Beyond Hate
Sam Sachdeva (Newsroom): Hate speech, social cohesion consultation ‘not authentic engagement’
Sam Mangai (ODT): Kneejerk reactions not always empowering
Brian Fallow (Herald): Plan to reform RMA leaves many unanswered questions (paywalled)
RNZ: Govt funding for gang-run meth treatment programme cleared
RNZ: Union presses case for retaining fuel tankers after Marsden Point refinery closure
Lana Andelane (Newshub): Conversion Therapy Bill: Man who underwent conversion therapy says it still very much exists in New Zealand
Jamie Gray (Herald): NZ carbon price hits record $59/tonne after strong Emissions Trading Scheme auction (paywalled)
Stuff: Government spending watchdog: $200 koha to Mongrel Mob didn’t break any rules
Nita Blake-Persen (RNZ): Number of superannuitants earning over $200k triples in a decade
Mei Heron (1 News): Govt not planning to offer WOF extensions
Marjorie Cook (ODT): Opponents prepare to fight billionaire Peter Thiel’s planned lakefront lodge plans
Andre Chumko (Stuff): Should art be a mandatory consideration for new infrastructure?
Jane Phare (Herald): Opening scene: The new boss taking New Zealand movies to the world (paywalled)
Chris Keall (Herald): Wheels within wheels: Why Chorus is tripling fibre speed at no extra cost (paywalled)
Paul Lewis (Herald): America’s Cup: Paul Lewis – Inside the distasteful plot to oust Grant Dalton from Team NZ (paywalled)
Ian Taylor (Stuff): Grant Dalton v Mark Dunphy: ‘Money alone doesn’t win America’s Cup’ 

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