Home' Greymouth Star : July 1st 2014 Contents Greymouth Star
Tuesday, July 1, 2014 - 3
Child sets fire to home
A four-year-old boy playing with
matches has resulted in a Flaxmere
family losing their home. Lagi Kava
said her children and their two
uncles were at home when they
noticed the fire about 7pm. The
family escaped the house and did not
have time to rescue any belongings.
Three appliances took about 15
minutes to subdue the blaze. The
landlord said he had cancelled
insurance on the house only a month
ago. He fitted the house with a
fire hose, smoke alarms and fire
— APNZ-Hawke’s Bay Today
Fatal crash investigation
Police are still investigating the
motorcycle crash that claimed the
life of a 46-year-old Hawke’s Bay
woman. The woman’s bike and an
oncoming car collided near the
Waitangi Bridge over the Tutaekuri
River on State highway 2 just
south of Awatoto yesterday.The
woman died at the scene. Police had
established the victim’s identity but
were still working to get in touch
with some family members.
— APNZ-Hawke’s Bay Today
Pile-up delays traffic
There were major traffic delays on
Auckland’s Southern Motor way
after a five-car crash today. The crash
happened just south of the Greenlane
interchange about 6.30am, police
said. Lane three was blocked and
traffic had built up. — APNZ
Recidivist conman jailed
A 33-year-old man, described as
a “recidivist conman” who went on
a “dishonesty spree”, was sentenced
in the Queenstown District Court
yesterday to 20 months’ jail. Darryl
John Bennett, builder, pleaded
guilty to a total of six charges
of theft, using a false document
and obtaining by deception
cash and accommodation in
Auckland, Blenheim, D unedin and
Queenstown. Sentencing Bennett,
Judge Michael Turner rejected home
detention because the community
needed to be protected from
Bennett. — Otago Daily Times
A Rotorua Lakes High School
student has been suspended after
allegedly pulling a knife on another
student during a group fight. A
verbal altercation involving 10 boys
happened last Thursday and was
broken up by two teachers, principal
Bruce Walker said. As the boys
dispersed, a student accused a fellow
student of threatening him with a
knife, but the claim was not reported
to the office. The accused student was
searched the following day and staff
found a pocket knife. His parents were
advised by the school to contact police.
The student will return on Thursday.
— APNZ-Rotorua Daily Post
Numbers in Keno draw No 10020: 1,
10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 18, 22, 23, 24, 26,
29, 41, 47, 49, 61, 66, 67, 69. Draw No
10021: 2, 3, 8, 12, 13, 14, 18, 26, 27, 37,
39, 46, 47, 52, 56, 61, 63, 68, 71, 76.
Fraud inquiry into missing cars
Foreign Affairs Minister Murray
McCully says the name and country
of a foreign diplomat accused of
sexual offences should not remain a
The man, who claimed diplomatic
immunity, cannot be identified
because of a suppression order.
Mr McCully had sought advice
from the Solicitor-General, who
said the Government should comply
with the court order.
“ We understand that some media
organisations are seeking to have
that suppression order lifted. And I
wish you well,” Mr McCully said.
“I can’t see any good public policy
reason why you’d want to protect
someone from publicity given there
won’t be a trial.”
News organisations are challenging
the court order.
Mr McCully said the Government
did not plan to join the legal action.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs
and Trade (Mfat) called in the
relevant country’s head of mission
last night to tell them that New
Zealand expected the diplomat to
face the consequences of his actions.
Prime Minister John Key said the
country had reassured Mfat that it
was taking the issue very seriously.
“ We made it quite clear that we
were under no illusion about how
seriously New Zealand took the
issue, and we expect the person to be
held to account,” he said.
The diplomat, in his 30s, fled the
country after being charged with
burglary and assault with intent to
rape by Wellington police.
He had followed a 21-year-old
woman to her home in Brooklyn
on May 9, when the alleged assault
The Ministry for Foreign Affairs
formally asked for the diplomat ’s
home country to waive diplomatic
immunity, but it declined.
The Government said the man
could still face charges in his home
Prime Minister John Key said Mfat
had formally asked for the diplomat ’s
home country to waive diplomatic
immunity, but it had declined.
“ New Zealand’s very strong
preference was that he would have
been charged. Effectively that
sending country stopped us from
doing that,” he told reporters.
Under the Vienna Convention,
diplomats could claim immunity to
avoid arrest and detention.
The Government made a show of
hauling in the diplomat ’s head of
mission to the ministry last night “to
make it clear how seriously it views
But the ability for the Government
to publicly sanction the country
was limited because the Wellington
District Court made an order to
suppress the diplomat ’s identity and
challenging the court suppression
order. — APNZ
Name diplomat call from McCully
The Ngapara and Tokarahi areas of
north Otago are reeling from the news
police yesterday were investigating
another incident of more sheep being
Detective Warren D uncan, who is
also investigating the recent shooting of
195 sheep on nearby Peter and Janine
Stackhouse’s farm, believed at least
another 15 sheep were killed some time
on Sunday night.
They were found yesterday morning by
a “very upset ” property owner, he said.
Mr Stackhouse yesterday was reluctant
to comment on the latest incident for
fear of spotlighting his property, but said
the area would be “absolutely devastated”
and “really, really ner vous” after the latest
“ We are really struggling . . . ,” he said.
Asked if there was anything the area
could do, such as some sort of patrol or
neighbourhood watch, Mr Stackhouse
said that was possible, but quite difficult
to set up in a hurry.
It was a matter of people in the area
looking out for each other, locking up
gates, being very obser vant and reporting
anything that looked even slightly out of
normal, he said.
Mr Duncan said police yesterday were
conducting an initial scene examination
on the latest incident.
He understood the sheep were not
insured. They were, again, not on land
next to a road. — Otago Daily Times
An inquiry into the disappearance
of dozens of Dunedin City Council
vehicles — and allegations of missing
hundreds of thousands of dollars —
is now a fraud investigation, council
chief executive Sue Bidrose has
Dr Bidrose stopped short of
implicating individual council staff,
at least for now, saying yesterday
the focus was on “all aspects” of the
processes and practices within its
She also confirmed other potential
risks had been identified, while council
staff have been warned they would
need to “earn” the public’s trust again.
“Our reputation as an organisation
of people who don’t take home a
single ratepayer dollar outside our
wages is very precious.
“ We’re going to have to earn this
back, as even (last week’s) news has
already dented it,” she wrote in an
update to all staff.
The probe by independent financial
consultant Deloitte was launched
after the sudden death of the council’s
Citipark and Citifleet team leader,
Brent Bachop, on May 21.
Dr Bidrose last week confirmed
the investigation was examining an
apparent “discrepancy” in vehicle fleet
numbers, while it was reported up to
100 vehicles might have been sold,
and the proceeds pocketed, over the
Yesterday, Dr Bidrose confirmed the
discrepancy was unearthed when the
council’s new group chief financial
officer, Grant McKenzie, insisted
on “independent oversight ” of the
council’s asset list earlier this year.
The list, used for council insurance
purposes, had previously been
within the Citifleet
department, she said.
“ It was that independent oversight
that alerted us to us to the fact there
was several different sets of figures.”
The new approach was part of a
wider review of processes across the
council, which began last year, she
So far, no other “questionable”
practices had been identified, but
some “inconsistent ” processes had
been, she said.
That included the way council
contracts were handled, and in
some cases rolled over, which was
being addressed by creating a new
centralised contracts register, she said.
The register would inform other
council staff when a contract was up
for renewal, “so it’s not up to just an
individual manager to roll them over”,
“There’s contracts that expire and
then managers make a decision just
to roll them over. Sometimes they ’re
quite small, but there’s a variability in
contracting processes that we want to
be standardised,” she said.
Asked if the old approach left room
for untoward behaviour, she said:
“There’s a risk.” — Otago Daily Times
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source: interest conz
NEW YORK (US$/OUNCE)
mark tet move t
As at 4pm June 30, 2014
a2 Milk Company
2.085 +0.005 628.2
ANZ Banking Gr
36.00 +0.10 626.4
Auckland Intl Airpt
1.725 -0 .01 96.39
5.34 +0.03 142.9
Diligent BM Services
DNZ Prop Fnd
10.02 -0 .07 12.36
- 0 .01 378.3
Fonterra Shldrs Fnd
Goodman Prop Tr
Guinness Peat Gr
2.435 -0 .01 1.04
- 0 .03 701.3
Kiwi Prop Tr
1.16 -0 .005 39 .37
14.25 -0 .05 23.44
Mighty River Power
2.235 -0 .005 21.32
3.10 +0.02 24.82
0.82 +0.025 392.7
3.50 +0.06 12.00
- 0 .01 48.02
15.40 -0 .05 1.25
Prop For Ind
3.31 -0 .02 1.37
Sky Network TV
6.90 +0.03 65 .19
3.97 -0 .01 31.54
Steel & Tube
3.10 -0 .04 1.59
Summerset Gr Hldgs
2.695 +0.015 591.1
- 0 .01 20.00
7.13 -0 .02 0.00
Vital Hlth Prop Tr
3.12 +0.02 1.59
- 0 .36 23.27
Trading to 10:30am,
Tuesday, July 1, 2014
DECLINERS: 22 TRADED: 77
Aluminium High Grade
Changes at council over missing vehicles, money
Preparations for Wairarapa’s
own World War One Field of
Remembrance began last week,
with the first crosses taking shape.
Henley Men’s Shed is
taking part in the Fields of
Remembrance Trust ’s White
Crosses project, creating hundreds
of white crosses to commemorate
the centenary of the Anzac
landing at Gallipoli and honour
the region’s fallen soldiers.
The project, supported by the
three Wairarapa district councils,
was announced in April and the
Men’s Shed began work on the
crosses at the end of last week.
Men’s Shed member Mer v
Brown is working on machining
the timber required, and said his
fellow members will shortly begin
assembling and painting the
“The guys at the shed are all mad
keen on the idea,” Mr Brown said.
“They can’t wait to get cracking.”
The Men’s Shed — with
assistance from the two south
Wairarapa men’s sheds, will need
to make about 560 crosses —
544 to represent the Wairarapa
soldiers who perished during
World War One, plus “a few
The crosses will be displayed in
each Wairarapa town, starting
from Anzac Day 2015.
“Welost a lot of men in World
War One. Wairarapa would
have only had about 10,000-odd
people back then,” Mr Brown
said. “So 544 is a huge percentage.
“It’ll be a big job but we’re
looking for ward to it.”
Each cross, modelled on the
white crosses engraved on
headstones of World War One
dead in New Zealand cemeteries,
will be 60cm by 40cm and bear a
dead soldier’s name, regimental
number, rank and decorations
Mr Brown said the crosses
commemorating the Masterton
dead would most likely be
displayed outside Masterton
Town Hall, and Youth Council
members would hopefully be
assisting with the placing of the
The crosses will be displayed
for about five days and will be
displayed again every Anzac Day
— APNZ-Wairarapa Times-Age
Handymen honour war dead
PICTURE: Wairarapa Times-Age
Graeme Saunders of M B Brown, left, and Mer v Brown of Henley Men’s Shed, with one of the 560
white crosses for Wairarapa’s Field of Remembrance.
Railway landscape contractors tried
frantically to free their woodchipper
from rail tracks before it was wiped
out by a goods train just after noon
The chipper, being used by Treescape
NZ contractors, became stuck on the
tracks near Lincoln Road in Carterton
during a pruning operation.
The contractors were moving the
machine to tend to trees on the other
side of the tracks when things went
wrong, Carterton chief fire officer
Wayne Robinson said.
A JNL log train travelling south
came around the bend when
contractors realised it was either them
or the chipper, he said.
“They hadn’t been able to get it off so
they left it there. ”
He said the train did not knock
the chipper aside, but kept smashing
it for ward on the tracks until it
eventually lodged partly under the
The machine was “pretty destroyed”
while the train received superficial
damage, he said.
Mr Robinson said the contractors
were “very, very lucky”.
Police, ambulance and three fire
trucks attended. Nobody was injured.
Tranz Metro said it was investigating
The Wairarapa commuter train was
disrupted and the 3.40pm southbound
ser vice was replaced by bus between
Featherston and Masterton.
— APNZ-Wairarapa Times-Age
Goods train hits chipper
PICTURE: Wairarapa Times-Age
Firemen with a goods train near Lincoln Road, Carterton. The train had
struck a wood chipper that contractors could not get off the track in time.
New Zealand wages have risen $34.53
on average in the past year while house
prices have skyrocketed $38,000.
The dramatic comparison of real
estate prices outstripping people’s pay
is revealed in Massey University’s home
affordability report quarterly sur vey,
Written by Professor Bob Hargreaves,
it showed a national deterioration in
home affordability in the past year and a
rising gap between house prices in larger
urban centres and provincial centres.
deteriorated by 7.6% in the 12 months
ending May 2014, the report found.
“There was no real surprise in this
result because the average annual wage
increase of $34.53 was not enough to
offset a $38,000 increase in the national
median house price and an increase in
the average mortgage interest rate from
5.57% to 5.64%.
“This deterioration in affordability is
likely to continue as recent interest rate
increases are incorporated into the debt
ser vicing costs for home mortgages.”
Salvation Army social policy analyst
Alan Johnson said the situation was
becoming “impossible” for some house
“ People on fairly good incomes of
$80,000-plus have aspirations to buy a
house but the reality is they ’re looking at
buying a house of more than $600,000.
It ’s virtually impossible for them to do it.
Even young middle-income households
face an impossible task now. It ’s an
New Zealand had very distinct and
separate housing markets: Auckland
and Christchurch, where volumes and
prices were rising, and the rest of New
Zealand, which was more stable. House
prices would soften because of interest
rate rises, he predicted.
ASB economist Christina Leung
said interest rates were driving housing
affordability deterioration but a jump in
dwelling consents over the past year was
The study showed affordability
deteriorated in Central Otago-Lakes
(by 12.2% in the previous 12 months),
Canterbury (10.6%), Auckland (9.1%),
Waikato (4.8%), Northland (3.5%),
Wellington (3.4%) and Hawke’s Bay
Affordability improved in Southland
(14.4%), Taranaki (8.4%), Manawatu-
Whanganui (6.2%), Nelson (2.2%) and
Massey’s real estate analysis unit used
average weekly earnings and interest
rate figures from Statistics NZ and the
Reser ve Bank, and compared those with
data from the Real Estate Institute to
reach its conclusions.
consents in May were at their highest in
seven years. Statistics NZ data showed
the number of new dwellings for which
consents were issued was back to the
levels of September 2007.
But they are still below the series peak
in 2004, business indicators manager
Neil Kelly said.
Nationally, 2125 new dwellings
gained consents in May, including 195
apartments (down from 432 apartments
in April). Apartment numbers vary a lot
from month to month.
The regions with the most consents for
new dwellings were Auckland, with 611
(including 109 apartments), Canterbury
605 (including 46 apartments) and
“A total of $1.2 billion of building work
was consented in May, with $842 million
of residential work and $370 million of
non-residential work,” Statistics NZ
Association chief executive War wick
Quinn said he expected 23,000 to
24,000 residential building consents to
be issued this year, up from 21,300 last
year and 16,929 in 2012.
Auckland and Canterbury still make
up nearly 60% of all activity and he
predicted this would continue.
Identification of special housing
areas in Auckland, and more recently
Wellington, had not yet been manifested
in any upturn in consenting levels, but
an immediate response was never likely
given it took time to work through the
feasibility analysis and then the resource
and building consent process, but the
results should come, he said.
— APNZ-New Zealand Herald
House price rises
increases for dead
First-term Green MP Holly
Walker has decided to withdraw
from the party’s list, effectively
stepping down as a MP at the
unexpected change in my family
life has made it very difficult for
me to continue as a Green MP,” Ms
“Under these circumstances, I
have chosen to put my family first
and withdraw myself from the
Green Party list.”
Ms Walker, who will still contest
the Hutt South seat in order to help
the Greens’ party vote, said she was
announcing the decision with “real
She said she had been juggling
being a mother with her work as an
MP for the last six months.
“ While I’ve had awesome
support to do that from my caucus
colleagues and from my party, we’ve
had a recent additional challenging
family circumstance and that has
kind of tipped it over into, we think,
impossible territory.” Ms Walker,
31, said she did not want to go
into detail about the family matter
which had driven her decision.
“ It ’s personal and I want to
protect the privacy of my family but
I can say we’re all safe and well and
it ’s essentially just a change that ’s
caused us to reconsider our childcare
arrangements and reconsider our
priorities as a family. ”
Ms Walker said she would
continue to be an active member
of the Green Party and would not
rule out a future move to return to
“I would never say never. ”
She said she was appreciative
of the support she received from
her Green caucus colleagues and
Speaker David Carter to enable her
to resume her work as an MP since
she returned to Parliament earlier
this year following the birth of her
daughter Esther in October.
She believed she could have
continued as an MP if not for the
additional family situation.
Turei said the party was “really
disappointed” by Ms Walker’s
The party had been “privileged”
to have her as an MP, particularly
due to her work to highlight child
poverty issues as well as her lobbying
disclosure and transparency work.
“ We respect Holly’s decision to
put her family first. Parliament can
be a tough place for young mums
with the long hours and regular
travel,” Ms Turei said.
— APNZ-New Zealand Herald
Green MP withdraws from list
A 55-year-old Hawke’s Bay man,
described as a “serial fraudster” and
sentenced for impersonating a lawyer
and now holds 184 convictions, including
impersonating a pilot.
Brian Hunter was sentenced to five
months’ home detention today, after
being found guilty of two charges of
obtaining by deception in the Napier
District Court in February.
Judge Jonathan Down said Hunter will
undergo a psychiatric assessment and
complete any treatment or counselling if
required as part of the sentence.
Judge Down found the “serial fraudster”
guilty in February’s judge alone trial,
after he fabricated the identities of
Kapiti Coast lawyers Michael O’Hara
and Brian Shaw.
Hunter used the fake names to hire
two moving companies as he moved
his possessions from Waipukurau to
Hastings in October 2012 and from
Ashhurst to Waipukurau in April 2012.
In January, Hunter was sentenced to
300 hours’ community work after he
admitted a charge of operating an aircraft
without the required documentation.
— APNZ-Hawke’s Bay Today
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