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National Radio Midday Bulletin

Dairy Farmers Vote On Merger – Dairy Court Action – Police Compo – Electricity – Fatal Northland Fire – Fatal Fire Truck Crash – Oil Spill – Bulgaria – Afghanistan – Texas Death Penalty – Deep Vein Thrombosis – Napier Policing – Cruelty To Animals

DAIRY FARMERS VOTE ON MERGER: The outcome of the vote on the proposed mega-merger in the Dairy Industry should be known within the next 48 hours. The vote needs to be 75% in favour, in each of the two companies involved, for the merger to go ahead.
- MATAMATA MEETING: There have been several speeches at the meetings today. The mood at the meetings is a “get-on-with-it” kind of mood, says an RNZ reporter. The voting will begin at around 1pm and will take around two hours to be completed.
- HAWERA MEETING: Farmers are happy that today will be decision day. No-one is prepared to say how the vote will go. A close vote is expected. The voting is expected to start shortly. Results are expected at around 2pm or 3pm. Dairy leaders gather in Hamilton at 4pm to announce the result publicly.

DAIRY COURT ACTION: A court action is underway in Wellington over the merger of Tui and Kiwi dairy companies several years ago. Tui shareholders are challenging the merger.

POLICE COMPO: Police say they are not going to appeal a decision by the Employment Court to award $250,000 of compensation to a police officer forced to retire early from the Whangamata Police. The policeman’s self-esteem was shattered after his early retirement. The case is the latest in a series of police compensation cases.

ELECTRICITY: There are hopes that wholesale electricity prices may fall as a result of lake storage rising 7% in the last week due to rain. NIWA is predicting average or below average rainfall over the rest of winter.

FATAL NORTHLAND FIRE: The body of a man who died in a fire in Northland has been taken to hospital for a post-mortem.

FATAL FIRE CRASH: Three investigations are now underway into the fatal crash of a fire-engine near Foxton yesterday. The Fire Service is conducting an inquiry, and police have two inquiries underway. There was heavy rain falling at the time of the crash say police.

OIL SPILL: A German shipping company faces a fine of around $200,000 after admitting to an oil spill in Auckland Harbour.

BULGARIA: A two month old movement led by King Simeon II appears to have won an election in Bulgaria. King Simeon was not running personally on the ticket and he has not made it clear what position he will take within the new government.

AFGHANISTAN: The UN World Food Programme has announced it has reached an agreement with the Taleban to enable it to keep a bakery open in the Afghani capital Kabul.

TEXAS DEATH PENALTY: The Texas Governor has vetoed a bill to take the decision of whether killers are mentally retarded – and therefore should not be executed – out of the power of juries and put it into the domain of judges.

DEEP VEIN THROMBOSIS: Qantas says it does not have a policy of banning people who suffer from deep vein thrombosis from flying. The say they refused a man a ticket because they could not guarantee him extra leg room as requested by his doctor.

NAPIER POLICING: Napier police say that a special unit targeting troublemakers in inner city bars has proved its worth over three weekends. The unit was established after a man was beaten in the early hours of the morning. Police say they cannot guarantee the unit will continue operating.

CRUELTY TO ANIMALS: The RNZSPCA is appalled at the lenient sentence given to a farmer whose donkey had to be put down after being left hobbling around with a missing hoof.

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