Today in politics - Tuesday, November 26

Last updated 05:00 26/11/2013

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Politics

Nominations sought for ORC vacancy following death of Maggie Lawton Otago regional councillors halt water plan change English 'still not rushing into inquiry', says former defence minister has no new information Maori Party and Government reach deal to pass final stage of RMA reforms Australian Tax Office could oppose Apple paying tax in NZ, says source Housing First officially launched in Auckland A pragmatist signs out: Goodbye and good luck Edge of Lake Te Anau included in Govt tenders for oil and gas block exploration Editorial: SAS claims require full investigation Nicky Hager brings spirited conversation to Nelson cafe

Labour, Greens 'would get good deal' in asset buy-back 

As the anti-asset sales referendum gets under way, Prime Minister John Key says Labour and the Greens should buy back the privatised assets if they are serious about opposing the sales.

He joked that they would even get a good deal since shares in Mighty River Power are cheaper than when the Government sold them. But Labour leader David Cunliffe said Key "will have to get up earlier in the morning" to trap him into an unfunded promise. 

Film industry subsidies may rise to bring in work

The Government is considering lifting subsidies to encourage more films to be made here.

Key said the feedback from the struggling film industry was that the current incentives were not competitive enough and the Government had asked Film New Zealand for a report.

"They're working on it but whether that means there will be any movement is a very different issue," he said.

Inquiry into court system as hearing delays continue

The Productivity Commission appears set to investigate the courts system among rising concern within the Government that its efforts to introduce efficiencies have had little impact.

Key said the Government had invested in upgraded electronic systems among other measures "but in the end people are waiting an awfully long time to get to court".

He did not say whether long service leave for judges, which has soared, may be a factor in the delays.

MPs head to Sydney for leadership forum

A gaggle of MPs has headed across the Tasman for the annual Australian New Zealand Leadership forum, which is being held in Sydney.

On the Government side, Finance Minister Bill English, Economic Development Minister Steven Joyce, Foreign Affairs Minister Murray McCully, Trade Minister Tim Groser and Commerce Minister Craig Foss are attending.

Labour Party leader David Cunliffe will deliver a speech to the forum tomorrow.

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- Fairfax Media

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