It’s Riot Day tomorrow and Whaleoil is bringing you the Martyn Bradbury Riot Day Bingo Game! All you have to do is watch the news coverage, live or delayed, on the day. As you hear or see any of the items, you can mark them off. If you fill your card: BINGO! Read more »
You have to wonder at the logic of SkyCity. Apparently their ‘gift’ to the nation of a convention centre won’t make them any money.
SkyCity’s international convention centre may end up running at a loss, compensated for by generous gambling concessions.
At the company’s annual general meeting in Auckland on Friday, chairman Chris Moller said the first sod of the huge development would be turned before the year was out.
However, Moller said the board was “under no illusion” that the centre itself would generate any significant profit.
Instead, the return on the $450 million investment will come from gambling concessions granted by the Government, including extension of the Auckland casino licence until 2048. Read more »
by Stephen Cook
ONE OF the main players in the high-profile SkyCity P ring has been paroled after serving just half of a 12-year prison sentence.
Di Wu, a 32-year-old Chinese national also known as Elvis, was sentenced in June 2010 to 12 years and six months behind bars after being found guilty by a majority verdict on three methamphetamine supply and conspiracy charges.
The Crown had requested a starting point of 25 years imprisonment.
His conviction came after the fourth trial arising from the police’s year-long Operation Manu, which investigated a multimillion-dollar P ring operating from the VIP lounge of SkyCity casino.
The key figure in the gang, Ri Tong Zhou, 41, was jailed for 15 years after admitting more than 30 methamphetamine-related charges including the supply of more than $3 million worth of P in just two months. Read more »
Broadcaster Paul Henry is likely to be called to give evidence in the trial of a man charged with assaulting him.
Diego Leonardo Chavez, 35, appeared in Auckland District Court today to face two charges of assault.
Assisted by a Spanish interpreter he entered not guilty pleas and a judge-alone trial was scheduled for October.
The allegations relate to a protest outside Prime Minister John Key’s post-Budget speech at Auckland’s SkyCity events centre on May 22.
It was reported at the time that protesters led by veteran activist Sue Bradford charged at the entrances but were pushed back by police. Read more »
You’ve probably already heard: there was a bit of a riot at SkyCity today. Quite absurdly, Paul Henry, who wasn’t actually involved in the protest nor what was being protested against, walks up for a spot of lunch and becomes the focal point for the deep hatred these ferals have for people who actually work hard and have some money.
People think Maps are for places. Not so. This is what happens when you ask Google Maps about me
This one is rather telling… although it’s good to see it’s not a a certain other lawyer’s home: Read more »
The Government isn’t worried about a members’ Bill that would torpedo the Auckland convention centre deal.
New Zealand First’s Tracey Martin wants to strip SkyCity of all the special benefits it received – like extra gaming tables and more pokies.
That would put an end to the current agreement and could cost taxpayers millions.
However, Economic Development Minister Steven Joyce is unruffled.
“I would suspect that the parties will line up in a similar fashion as they have previously, so I don’t have a concern that this time.” Read more »
While Steve Joyce and SkyCity battle over how many columns there’ll be at the convention centre, some tricky questions need to be asked about precisely how large the ‘international size and standard’ convention centre is going to be.
When the SkyCity deal was first announced the public were promised a convention centre that could hold between 3,500 and 5,000 delegates. But the plans they’ve filed with the Auckland Council are only half that size. Read more »
We’ve had two terms when the National-led coalition government did a pretty good job at presenting a united front. With the exception of Peter Dunne, who already went troppo over the last few years (did this coincide with legal highs?), the other partners didn’t openly defy National.
That has changed. In spite of National being returned with a record-breaking 3rd term majority under MMP, its coalition partners and indeed National itself are now openly fighting in front of the kids.
There won’t be a referendum on national super while John Key is Prime Minister.
He has shot down ACT leader David Seymour’s call for the people to decide how superannuation should be funded.
Mr Seymour told his party’s annual conference on Saturday the current scheme wasn’t viable in the long term and there had to be changes to make it financially sustainable.
He wants an expert group appointed to come up with options for a referendum, and says raising the age from 65 isn’t the only one available.
Mr Key isn’t interested and says Mr Seymour, a government ally, didn’t talk to him before raising the issue.
“I read about it in the newspaper,” he said.
“There won’t be a referendum. The National Party is clear on super – the age should stay at 65 and the entitlement at 66 percent (of the average wage).”
During the 2008 election campaign, which he won, Mr Key pledged that if there was any change to national super under his watch he would resign from parliament.
There you go. “Don’t broadside me in the media, son”, says Key to minnow David. “We do these things behind the scenes where I can tell you to stop playing games.”
Says one commenter:
John Key has no problem spending $26 million on flag referendum but unwilling to spend any money on one as important as the future financial security of our country and how to fund superannuation.
But add this to Peter Dunne and the Maori Party being extremely vocal against sending New Zealand troops to Iraq, and in public at least, this coalition government looks far from a cohesive team.
I don’t get a sense this is by design. Key’s having trouble with his back bench, can’t see eye to eye with Joyce who wants to keep giving money away to SkyCity and Team New Zealand no matter the public opposition, had to pull the plug on Parata’s charter schools, is getting constant static from Bill English over delivering a surplus, and he’s now bickering with coalition partners through the media.
To seasoned observers, these are interesting developments.
– NZN via 3 News
Andrew Little is back to being Angry Andy, with a bit of dunderhead Andy thrown in.
The man clearly has no understanding of business when he utters inanities like this.
Mr Joyce conceded that a smaller convention centre would be less attractive to some groups and could result in missed business “at the margins”.
Asked if he was hopeful SkyCity might soften any downsizing by spending more than the agreed $402 million, Mr Joyce said indications were that it wasn’t off the table.
“They are already making comments in that regard, so, let’s see.”
But Labour leader Andrew Little said a government under his leadership would be tougher. Read more »