Complaint from a sore Tau – he wants more time for consultations on Northland mineral exploration

March 9, 2012

Betcha there's lots more metal under the Ninety Mile Beach, but it's off limits to mineral explorers.

Alf is by no means surprised to hear the latest grouching from Sonny Tau.

The Ngapuhi leader is insisting the Ministry of Economic Development needs to adequately consult Maori before it seeks bids from companies wanting to explore for minerals in Northland.

The ministry is consulting, of course, after announcing that, from May this year, New Zealand Petroleum and Minerals intends inviting companies to take part in a competitive tender process for mineral exploration permits.

But is the consultation period sufficient?

It’s ample, actually.

But it’s not long enough for Tau.

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“Koha” has been nabbed by an American outfit – but what role was played by Maori advisers in Wellington?

November 23, 2011

Alf is ready to go out to bat this morning for the small New Zealand library that is fighting to keep its trademark free software from the clutches of an American corporation.

Let there be no misunderstanding here: he has no problem with American corporations, except for their banks, which are a rum lot.

He does have a problem with American corporations that – as seems to be the case here – try to claim ownership of something developed by the Horowhenua Library Trust.

But he wonders how the hell our Ministry of Economic Development came to be involved in this shabby affair and the role of its Maori advisers (the ministry is bound to have some, because everybody has Maori advisers nowadays).

Let’s go back a bit.

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The casting couch won’t work for Gerry – maybe that why he’s giving millions to movie moguls?

January 9, 2011

And if we can come up with another $100 million, they will let me play Henry VIII.

Alf finds it hard to fathom what’s going on in the Beehive nowadays.

Mean, lean Bill English is banging on about the need for fiscal rigour (although he is apt to forget this when throwing money around for Polynesian employment projects)

Generous and chubby Gerry Brownlee, on the other hand, is doling out millions of dollars to American movie moguls – the sorts of people who can count their profits in billions.

The long-suffering taxpayers of Eketahuna North accordingly are confused.

Today they have been pressing Alf for explanations, after the Sunday Star-Times disclosed that the public purse bankrolled blockbuster film and TV productions to the tune of $75 million over the past two years.

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Gerry switches on his electricity review

April 1, 2009

Behind all that huff and puff, Gerry Brownlee is a man of action (although Nick Smith has him licked when it comes to getting rid of lefties).

Our Energy and Resources Minister says a Ministerial review of the electricity sector will start work immediately.

He has released the terms of reference for the review and announced the six independent experts being appointed to a Technical Advisory Group.
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Public asked to discuss broadband plans

March 31, 2009

Here’s your chance to have your say on broadband development.

The government is proposing to establish a Crown-owned investment company (“Crown Fibre Investment Co” or CFIC) to drive the government’s investment in ultra-fast broadband.

Communications and Information Technology Minister Steven Joyce is inviting feedback on the government’s plan.
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