24 Mar 2011

Morning Report: local papers

7:38 am on 24 March 2011

Thursday's headlines: the days of petrol at less than $2 per litre are gone; house of former police minister and Labour deputy leader Annette King searched police police in Darren Hughes case; former military man tipped as earthquake recovery tsar in Christchurch.

NZ Herald

The New Zealand Herald leads with the drama surrounding Labour politician Darren Hughes.

It says a fun debate with Victoria University students led to drinks at a series of downtown Wellington bars and then a trip to the whip's suburban home. There's a photo diagram of the locations involved.

Also on the front page: a teenager charged over a crash in which 11 people were hurt, one fatally, is now facing fresh counts of dangerous driving after a second accident.

The accused, 18, is a student at Rotorua Boys High.

Dominion Post

The lead story in The Dominion Post says police involved in the Darren Hughes investigation have searched the house of former police minister and Labour deputy leader Annette King, where he lives during the week.

In the only other story on the front page: it seems drivers are slowly taking their feet off the pedal, with road speeds dropping to an all time low.

The Press

The Press says respected former military man and senior civil servant Martyn Dunne will be Christchurch's first earthquake recovery tsar. It understands Mr Dunne will be formally announced as the temporary leader of a new Canterbury earthquake recovery authority.

In other stories: quake-hit bars, restaurants and retailers could reopen in a temporary "entertainment" hub in central Christchurch.

And hundreds of motorists were reunited with their trapped vehicles on Wednesday - 544 cars have been in the Lichfield St car park since last month's quake.


The Otago Daily Times leads with rising petrol prices. Alongside a map showing how much it now costs to travel to destinations in and around Otago, the paper says the days of petrol at less than $2 per litre have run dry.

A Wanaka bar owner who bit the ear lobe off a man described as an "obnoxious" patron, went onto spit the flesh on to the shoe of another customer. He was sentenced in the Queenstown District Court on Wednesday.