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The New Zealand Herald

Officer Suspended- Motor Yacht Built- Chemical Concern Voiced- Warriors’ Wages- Brain Drain- Gifted Kids Challenge- Dodgy Repairman- Govt Pressure- Crash Victim Found- Free Education Test Promoted- Health Exec Pay Rise- Govt Support Drops

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OFFICER SUSPENDED: A suspended police sergeant accused of running a game that involved rating motorists on their sex appeal at roadside checkpoints in Auckland has quit. An internal inquiry into the officer's behaviour could not establish if anyone else in his specialist breath-testing unit was involved.

- MOTOR YACHT BUILT: Isn't she the most beautiful baby you ever saw?" Robert Milhous is one very proud dad. And his new "baby" is certainly a looker. It is the Aria, the largest motor-yacht of its kind ever built in Australasia. The 47m superyacht has a top cruising speed of 24 knots.

- CHEMICAL CONCERN VOICED: Concerns about a possible link between illness in Kaitaia and chemical emissions from the town's triboard mill have led Northland Health to offer free specialist consultations to nine possibly affected people. The nine, all adults living near the mill, have illnesses notified to public health authorities in Whangarei after Northland Health asked Kaitaia doctors to report any suspected cases of isocyanate poisoning.

- WARRIORS’ WAGES: Multimillionaire Eric Watson's plans to cut the pay of Warriors players up to 50 per cent have put him offside with their agents. With only weeks to go until the start of pre-season training, the high-flying entrepreneur, who acquired the rugby league club last week, has not signed a single player.

- BRAIN DRAIN: Environmental honours graduate Miranda Olliff is a prime example of the well-educated young people ready and willing to use their skills to better New Zealand. The problem is that she cannot get a job here and may be forced to take her enthusiasm overseas.

- GIFTED KIDS CHALLENGE: Nine-year-old Joseph Stanley ponders the question carefully. Yes, he does feel a bit different from the other kids in his class because he can "do stuff" like roll his ears, shudder his eyes and click his elbows. But no, he does not feel different because he is gifted.

- DODGY REPAIRMAN: A repairman offers to waive his bill in return for sex. At the bottom of his invoice for a washing-machine repair is a note telling the woman that if she wants "a bit on the shifty" he will "wipe the debt clean." Her husband later rings the repairer, telling him never to return to the house and that the bill will not be paid.

- GOVT PRESSURE: Foreign governments are applying pressure to New Zealand over a joint venture between the Airways Corporation and Lockheed Martin. The New Zealand Government regards letters it has received as too sensitive to make public, saying they may prejudice security, defence or international relations.

- CRASH VICTIM FOUND: An injured woman waited 18 hours for help after her car ran down a steep bank near Apiti, 45km northeast of Feilding. Rescuers said the 37-year-old woman was found about 1 pm yesterday.

- FREE EDUCATION TEST PROMOTED: Alliance leader Jim Anderton wants to target special tertiary subjects for free education, and has suggested advanced science and engineering be the guinea-pigs. The suggestion to the Alliance conference in Wellington yesterday is a departure from the Alliance's policy of universal free tertiary education.

- HEALTH EXEC PAY RISE: The chief executive of Auckland Healthcare, New Zealand's largest public-hospital company, won a pay rise of between 8.8 per cent and 15.2 per cent last year. Graeme Edmond's increase may now be used by his company's nurses to ratchet up their pay claim.

- GOVT SUPPORT DROPS: Support for the Government has dipped despite increasing optimism about the country's economic outlook. Bucking the gloom over the sinking kiwi dollar, predicted job losses in the rail industry and the brain-drain kerfuffle, people polled for last night's TVNZ-Colmar Brunton poll were brighter about the future of the economy than a month ago.

All stories (c) copyright 2000 The New Zealand Herald

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