Checkpoint. 2012-08-30. 17:00-18:00.

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Checkpoint FOR THURSDAY 30 AUGUST 2012
1700 to 1707 NEWS
A heated debate is going on right now in Parliament over what the legal age for buying alcohol should be. In under half an hour MPs will have their second conscience vote in as many days, following yesterdays one backing the gay marriage Bill at its first hurdle. Their choice on the drinking age is clear - stick with 18, raise it to 20, or have a split - 18 for buying in a pub or restaurant, but 20 to buy it from a shop. The National Party MP, Tim Macindoe, is behind the amendment to push the age back up to 20, where it last was in 1999. CUT But many MPs have been speaking out against trying to restrict 18 and 19 year olds getting hold of alcohol. The Greens Gareth Hughes, says studies show youth drinking is on the decline - and shared some personal experience, that was very close to home for MPs. CUT Our political reporter, Liz Banas has been listening to the debate and joins us now.

Spring Creek miners expecting to return to work on Monday despite the axe hanging over their jobs are now being told they won't go back underground at all until the future of the West Coast mine is finalised. And already some of Solid Energy's workers are in touch with recruiters for Australia's mines, less than 24 hours after learning that 370 jobs at Spring Creek and 200 elsewhere are in jeopardy. Greymouth High School's acting principal, Ross Brockbank, is among those coping with the fallout. CUT We'll hear later in the programme from the union, which didn't know Solid Energy has decided NOT to assess if its workers are safe to return to work on Monday. Instead it's ruled that because of the stress over job cuts, it's too dangerous until the review of Spring Creek is completely over. But the company won't say when that will be, and has again refused Checkpoint's request for an interview. As for the prospects for workers who do get laid off, our economics correspondent Nigel Stirling has been looking at that. PKG

Labour says the inquiry into the MFAT leak may have uncovered a fundamental breach of collective Cabinet responsibility and confidentiality by Cabinet Minister Tim Groser, who if that's proved would have to quit. Its Phil Goff says the inquiry, which is looking into who leaked confidential papers about the restructuring of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade, has backfired on the Government. Here's our political reporter, Demelza Leslie. PKG

The Republican vice-presidential candidate Paul Ryan has promised he and his leader Mitt Romney won't duck the tough problems during his prime time speech at the party's convention in Florida. He told voters it was time for a turnaround in America. CUT Our correspondent at the convention Simon Marks says Paul Ryan is a beloved Republican who got a great response from the crowds tonight. PRE REC

A dangerous Taranaki over bridge has missed out on getting a big fix, but a congested bridge in New Plymouth does get a lot of money in the latest national road spending plan. Taranaki's share of the Transport Agency's 12 billion dollar three year road spend is 165 million dollars - but how that's divided up is now causing acrimony. Juliet Larkin reports. PKG

A new campaign backed by churches, unions and other community organisations is urging employers to start paying their workers a living wage. Low income earners say a living wage would give them some dignity, while the campaign organisers say it would help reduce poverty. Our political editor Brent Edwards has been at the launch of the living wage campaign. PKG
Three merchant ships are searching for as many 150 people who are feared drowned off the south-west coast of the Indonesian island of Java. The captain of one of the merchant vessels, says his crew has pulled six survivors from the water, but many more men, women and children were on board the asylum seeker boat and are still missing. Indonesia says one of its search and rescue ships is on its way to the scene, and the Australian Navy ship HMAS Maitland is also heading to the search zone. The ABC's Naomi Woodley has this report. PKG

Five Australian soldiers have been killed in Afghanistan, with the Defence Force in Canberra short time ago confirming two men died when the US Black Hawk helicopter crashed this morning. Earlier, word came through of three others killed and two injured in a rogue attack by someone wearing an Afghan army uniform. The Defence Force says morale has taken a hit and the Prime Minister Julia Gillard has just given an emotional news conference in the Cook Islands before rushing back to Australia from the Pacific Islands Forum. Our parliamentary chief reporter, Jane Patterson, is in Rarotonga. LIVE

Air New Zealand is expecting to have its long haul flights back into profit by the middle of next year, after losing more than a million dollars a week on those routes last year. The company made a profit of 71 million dollars for the year ending June - down 12 percent from the previous year - largely due to a sharp rise in fuel prices. The airline industry has been under intense pressure with a downturn in global travel but the national carrier has done better than many - especially its trans-Tasman rival Qantas which has just made a loss of 244 million dollars. Air New Zealand's chief executive is Rob Fyfe. PRE REC

Tēnā koutou katoa,

The lower North Island, Ngāti Toa, has initialled a deed of settlement, which recognises the tribe's ancestral chief as the composer of the haka, Ka Mate Ka Mate.

Last month the tribe was considering going to the Waitangi Tribunal over the famous national haka.

The Crown's redress offer signed in parliament today is worth more than 75-million-dollars.

In it, it includes financial redress, as well as giving Ngāti Toa the first right of refusal to buy some Crown-owned land.

The document also spells out Ngāti Toa's connection to the haka, ka mate.

In July, the tribe considered going to the Waitangi Tribunal after the Intellectual Property Office rejected its bid to protect four phrases of the haka saying it should remain in the public domain.

The crown's offer means it will introduce special legislation so when the haka is used publicly - say in an advertisement then it must clearly and reasonably attribute the haka to Ngāti Toa and its composer Te Rauparaha.

The deed needs to be ratified by the iwi and signed off before it can be introduced as a bill in parliament.


The Crown and Whanganui Iwi have signed an agreement that marks a step forward in the tribe being officially recognised as a guardian of the Whanganui River.

The document sets out a framework in which to look after the river.

Rosemary Rangitauira reports.



Ngāi Tūhoe says a plan to manage social services for it people will eventually lead to the iwi taking over most of the responsibilities currently provided by the state.

The Cabinet approved the social service management plan earlier this week.

It aims to improve the lives of people living in Te Urewera, ranging from housing to the aim of having no Tūhoe children in Child, Youth and Family care.

The chief negotiator for Tūhoe, Tamati Kruger [kru-jah], says as part of a forty year plan initial changes will be made through collaboration with state agencies.

He says the first five years will be used to settle in to a joint relationship, as well as to work together to get results.

Mr Kruger says at the end of the period most of the social service areas set out by the plan should be looked after and paid for by Tūhoe.

The social service management plan is part of the tribe's treaty settlement package.


Te Rūnanga A Iwi O Ngāpuhi and Child, Youth and Family have formally agreed to work together to protect and nurture children in Northland.

A Memorandum of Understanding commits both to open discussion, joint decision making and the sharing of information.

Ngāpuhi are the first Iwi to sign a memorandum with the department.

The Minister of Social Development, Paula Bennett says it will mean early intervention with vulnerable Ngāpuhi whānau and help address the root causes of child abuse and neglect.

She says her hope is that other Iwi will follow suit and build a closer relationship with Child, Youth and Family.

About half of the children in the department's care are Māori.

That's Te Manu Korihi news, I'll have a further bulletin in an hour.

The Government has dropped the spending cap proposal from its Public Finance Amendment Bill. But the ACT Party leader, John Banks, is not worried even though introducing legislation imposing a cap on government spending is part of ACT's confidence and supply agreement with National. Mr Banks says there's a very simple reason why the spending cap has been dropped. CUT But Mr Banks says the spending cap proposal will be included in standalone legislation to be introduced later. CUT

Heavy rain and severe winds are still battering America's Gulf Coast. Hurricane Isaac has been downgraded to a Tropical storm but is still causing disruption to hundreds-of-thousands of people in Louisiana. Local authorities are promising the levees built after Hurricane Katrina will hold and locals won't be forced to endure a repeat of the devastation in 2005. The ABC's North America correspondent Lisa Millar reports: PKG

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Year 2012

Reference number 184432

Media type AUDIO

Collection Sound Collection

Ngā Taonga Korero Collection

Genre Radio news programs
Nonfiction radio programs
Radio programs
Sound recordings

Credits Wilson, Mary, Presenter
Radio New Zealand National, Broadcaster

Duration 01:00:00

Date 30 Aug 2012

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