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National Radio Midday Report

IRD Compo – Paedophile Sentenced – US Economy – WEF Gathering – Performance Bonuses – Mystery Body – Breast Screening – Taxi Deregulation – Auckland Assault – Highway Patrol Parks Up – Kaitaia GP Shortage – Philippines Defence Minister – Mill Shutdown – Pinot Noir Tribute

- IRD COMPO: The Inland Revenue Department has agreed to pay Jan and Murray Willis $550,000 compensation for wrongly demanding money they didn’t owe, ending a 14 year battle between the Willis’s and IRD. ACT MP Rodney Hide says the IRD has yet to address many other cases of taxpayer mistreatment.

- PAEDOPHILE SENTENCED: A former teacher and fast food worker has been jailed for seven years for interfering with underage boys. The man was found guilty last month on 11 counts of indecent assault, five of inducing a boy to commit an indecent act, four of sodomy and one of attempted sodomy. The eight victims were between 14-16 and the offending occurred over a seven year period between 1979 and 1986. The man’s name continues to be suppressed.

- US ECONOMY: The United States economy has slowed so much it may be at zero growth, the head of the US Federal Reserve Alan Greenspan says.

- WEF GATHERING: The annual gathering of the World Economic Forum has converged at a Swiss ski resort. More than 1000 delegates, including heads of state, government ministers and chief executives gather once a year to discuss the state of the world economy.

- PERFORMANCE BONUSES: State Services Commission has made it clear that more performance payments will be payed to public sector employees this year.

- MYSTERY BODY: Forensic experts are still tying to identify human remains found in scrub in Maungakino. The body, believed to be that of a child, appears to have been lying undiscovered for a year.

- BREAST SCREENING: The Minister of Health Annette King says women should still have faith in Breast Screening programmes, after a report on the performance of the Otago Healthcare breast screening programme. The report made 39 recommendations, that Health Care Otago say are now being addressed.

- TAXI DEREGULATION: The minister responsible for deregulating the taxi industry, 1989 Transport Minister Bill Jefferies, says it was the right thing to do, but the criteria for drivers could be tougher to protect public safety. The Taxi Federation wants as halt to new taxi companies being approved, and says public reluctance to use taxis in some circumstances is an indictment on the industry.

- AUCKLAND ASSAULT: Auckland police say the condition of a man who is a victim of serious assault is deteriorating. The man was found bashed and bleeding in downtown Auckland in the early hours of the morning. Police say they don’t know who he is, and are appealing for help to identify him.

- HIGHWAY PATROL PARKS UP: The police have denied that orders given to new Highway Patrol officers to park up instead of driving around has anything to do with cost cutting. The National Party says they are being asked to park instead of patrolling to cut mileage.

- KAITAIA GP SHORTAGE: Northland Health says it is happy to help Kaitaia GPs cope with a doctor shortage, as long is it doesn’t cost. Three of the eight Kaitaia GPs are quitting, and finding replacements has proved difficult.

- PHILIPPINES DEFENCE MINISTER: The Defence Minister of the Philippines has submitted his resignation to the new president just days after she took office, but she has refused to accept the resignation.

- MILL SHUTDOWN: The General Manager of a Carter Holt Harvey’s mill says he is confident the company has not breached employment law by shutting the mill for six days and forcing workers to take leave.

- PINOT NOIR TRIBUTE: Leading wine expert Jancice Robinson has paid tribute to New Zealand’s Pinot Noir, as part of her keynote address to the Pinot Noir 2001 conference.

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