Today in politics: Friday, June 13

Last updated 05:00 13/06/2014
Russel Norman
KENT BLECHYNDEN/Fairfax NZ
WELL MANNERED: Green Party co-leader Russel Norman.

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Politics

Vernon Small: Budget 'surplus' fades from view as Auckland property prices threaten $3 million savings from closure of 30 police stations Teina Pora claims compensation Benefit numbers reach a six-year low Govt takes aim at childhood obesity Flags of political convenience MBIE clears Chinese rail employers, despite being refused records Federated Farmers calls for more government cash for irrigation ACC revamp to cost $750m to $950m NZ greenhouse gas levels ease but remain well above 2020 target levels

Trio team up as Screen NZ to drive country's profile

The New Zealand Film Commission, Film New Zealand and NZ On Air are to work together on a number of specific projects under the umbrella of Screen NZ. Culture Minister Chris Finlayson said they will aim to encourage more mid-sized, locally driven productions and attract more international production. "It will drive joint projects that help boost New Zealand's profile on the world stage," he said yesterday. 

Norman outed as a man with manners

Greens co-leader Russel Norman took part in an online chat session yesterday and was contacted by a listening parliamentary cafe worker, who noted his politeness. "You always tell us who you are when asking for things to be put on your account." Norman responded with it would be "really arrogant to assume that people know who I am". And, in case you are interested, Norman likes egg and gluten-free toast soldiers for breakfast. 

New Zealand given fifth place in Democracy Index

The BBC is reporting New Zealand has been ranked fifth in the latest Economist Intelligence Unit’s ‘‘Democracy Index’’, with a score of 9.26 behind Norway on 9.93, Sweden on 9.73, Iceland on 9.65 and Denmark on 9.38 – and one place above Australia on 9.13. The index measures include to what extent the country holds free and fair elections, civil liberties, participation, turnout, the number of women MPs, and political culture. 

Has Graeme Wheeler bagged Labour's policy?

Reserve Bank governor Graeme Wheeler’s answer when asked if curbing migration was futile: ‘‘It is very hard to fine-tune immigration to meet demand purposes. By the time you make an adjustment, you may well find that the situation has completely changed.’’ Labour noted he had also said a cut in departure numbers had less effect on housing demand and prices than an equal increase in the number arriving – a comment seen as supporting Labour’s view.

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- The Dominion Post

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