PRIVATE MATTER OF $12 MILLION
Green Party co-leader Russel Norman says the Government's privatisation plan has already cost more than $12 million. The Government had spent about $10m and the companies between $1.5m and $2m, he said. That did not include the cost of the Waitangi Tribunal water claim, or the bonus shares offer for Kiwi investors.
Genesis Energy had spent $670,000 preparing for the mixed-ownership model, Meridian Energy $562,000 and Solid Energy $131,000. Mighty River Power, the first company up for sale, would not disclose how much it had spent.
QUEEN'S MESSAGE FROM COLLINS
ACC Minister Judith Collins is rather proud of her video releases. For the second time this month she yesterday posted a clip on YouTube to accompany a press release. The idea was to embrace new technology, Ms Collins, who recently opened a Twitter account, told media.
"You can do with it what you like, whatever people do with YouTube ones." When one journalist suggested it looked like the Queen's message, Ms Collins laughed. "No, I don't think so."
POWER SURGE: REPORT IN ON TIME
The Waitangi Tribunal is due to release an interim report on assets sales and Maori water rights today, the requested deadline from the Government in order for it to get Mighty River Power to market this year.
The tribunal had asked the Government to put the company's partial privatisation on hold until it had resolved the water rights issue and said it would report by the end of September, but later agreed to release a truncated report by today, despite saying it was "unusual and inappropriate" for the Government to interfere.
IT'S HARD WORK HOLDING THE PHONE
More than 6500 jobseekers gave up trying to get through to Work and Income's 0800 number in the past financial year, Labour's state services spokesman Chris Hipkins has revealed.
He has this week exposed a series of failings in hotlines for Inland Revenue and Housing NZ.
“The National Government are quick to label unemployed people as lazy, but even the most enthusiastic job hunter could be forgiven for hanging up after waiting for over an hour to get through to Work and Income's 0800 Job Search Service,” he said.
- © Fairfax NZ News
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