Shane Jones wants his Northland 'nephews' to get off the couch and work for the dole

Recent comments by the new Minister for Regional Economic Development Shane Jones telling his "nephews" to get off the couch and work for the dole have caused a stir in his Northland hometown.

Speaking on TVNZ1's Q+A on Sunday about the government's proposed work for the dole scheme, Mr Jones gave a strong message.

"I am not going to remain silent while my young near-do-well nephews in Kaikohe and other places fall victim to the gangs."

Northland has more than 16,000 people receiving some sort of unemployment benefit and around six per cent of the region is unemployed, making it one of the highest rates in the country.

Locals in Mr Jones' hometown of Kaitaia are divided over the Mr Jones' comments.

The new Regional Economic Development Minister said out of work Kiwis could be planting trees, instead of migrant workers. Source: 1 NEWS

"It's not good forcing people into anything is it? They're going to rebel some way," one man told 1 NEWS.

However, two of Mr Jones real nephews agree with him about people working for the dole.

"We have so many opportunities out there that we can activate that we can participate in the economics of this country, like forestry and agriculture," business owner Herekia Murray said.

Another of Mr Jones real nephews was recently on the dole but has now found employment.

"I've got mates on the dole sitting on the couch they're watching TV they're playing a PS3 that they're paying off," Tiriti Harrison said.

Whatever the outcome locals and nephews alike will be hoping uncle Shane's plans for the region will get results.

The new Minister for Regional Development has been blunt about those with work shy attitudes. Source: 1 NEWS



Government to crack down on multinational companies dodging tax

The government has introduced legislation to parliament that will stop multinational companies avoiding tax by shifting profits offshore.

The bill will be given its first reading on Tuesday next week.

"Some multinationals use aggressive strategies to pay little or no tax anywhere in the world," Revenue Minister Stuart Nash said.

"This is known as base erosion profit shifting and is a massive problem - it denies a country its taxation revenue and erodes confidence in the fairness of the tax system."

Stopping multinationals avoiding tax was part of the coalition agreement between Labour and NZ First.

Measures in the bill will prevent multinationals from gaining a tax advantage through:

* Artificially high interest rates on loans from related parties to shift profits out of New Zealand

* Hybrid mismatch arrangements that exploit differences between countries' tax rules

* Artificial arrangements to avoid having a taxable presence in New Zealand

* Related-party transactions to shift profits to offshore group members.

"The proposed new rules will be an effective response to current avoidance techniques, but are not the end of the story," Mr Nash said.

"The Government will continue to investigate further options, both legislative and administrative, to counter aggressive tax practices."

New Zealand money, dollars, currency
New Zealand currency. Source: istock.com

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Kiwi teen stopped at Los Angeles Airport on his way to meet a registered sex offender he met online

A Kiwi teen who flew to the US to meet a convicted child sex offender has been stopped at Los Angeles Airport.

The 17-year-old arrived at LAX on Monday where he told US Customs officials that he was visiting the US to see a man that he made friends with on social media four years ago, Fairfax Media reports.

The teenager flew in on a one way ticket and only had $26 on his person. He said he planned to visit his friend at his family home in Howell, Michigan.

Upon looking into the story, customs found the man he had come to meet was a registered sex offender with two convictions to his name including sexual conduct with someone under the age of 13 and sexual assault.

Director of Field Operations at CBP Los Angeles, Carlos Martel told Fairfax Media the teenager was interviewed under federal standards for the protection of teenagers travelling to the United States alone.

"Minors are particularly vulnerable to sexual predators that commonly present themselves as individuals they can trust," Mr Martel said.

The 17-year-old has now been returned to New Zealand, where he lives with a caregiver.

New Zealand police say they are "aware of this matter and enquiries are ongoing".

Los Angeles Airport sign.
Los Angeles Airport sign. Source: Getty