Today in politics: Friday, October 26

Last updated 05:00 26/10/2012

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What you need to know about Antarctica's huge marine reserve Tributes paid to former trade union boss Helen Kelly at memorial service Labour: Housing NZ must account for 'financial and human cost' of meth testing flaws Former Horowhenua mayor reflects on 21 years in local politics No concrete plans for Northland bridges Editorial: MPs leave, but the taxpayer-funded flights go on Analysis: Was Joseph Parker's heavyweight bout 'political dynamite' for MPs? Paula Bennett's reign as acting Prime Minister ends via text message John Key's time in India was 'short and sweet' but will be chalked up as a success Brendon McCullum called Prime Minister by Indian announcer during John Key visit

Court clears way for Crafar farm sales

One of four Crafar farms the Overseas Investment Office says were unlawfully bought by interests linked to May Wang has been sold. Two others are on the market. They were under a restraining order as part of a court case in Hong Kong against Wang and others.

But Land Information Minister Maurice Williamson said it appeared the court had approved the sales, meaning New Zealand did not have to invoke provisions forcing that to happen.

Lobby bill has detractors - and some 'advocates'

A flood of submissions has picked apart the Lobbying Disclosure Bill. The bill, to set up a register and code of conduct for lobbyists, is being led by Green MP Holly Walker.

It passed its first reading unanimously but has copped a hammering at select committee, with fears over "unintended consequences" overshadowing general support for its intent. Mining industry group Straterra said lobbyists should be called "advocates" and presented "in a positive light" in the bill.

Dunne: Bottom line is, IRD not that generous

"Not so bright" tax scammers have targeted Revenue Minister Peter Dunne. A bogus email purporting to be from his own department popped up in his inbox yesterday. It claimed he was eligible for a tax refund of $185.44 but was really a phishing scam.

Mr Dunne forwarded the message to the Inland Revenue Department and warned people not to be caught out.

"We are not that generous," he said. "So all such approaches should be ignored."

Broad shoulders review of CYF complaints process

Former police commissioner Howard Broad will oversee a review of Child, Youth and Family's complaints process. The review will consider whether there needs to be an independent complaints process for CYF.

It will not re-examine decisions made by the Social Development Ministry or CYF's complaints process. It will look at the current arrangements for people making a complaint about CYF and consider options for an independent body.

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- The Dominion Post

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