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New Zealand Seeks 2000 TV Rights

May 4, 1999

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (AP) _ New Zealand is trying to buy exclusive TV rights to the ``first light″ of 2000, but the Chatham Islanders are holding out for more money.

The most recent offer, two weeks ago, was about $75,000, Chatham Islands farmer Ken Lanauze said Tuesday.

``We’re holding out for a better deal,″ he said.

Still, he conceded, broadcasters will be taking a gamble, because there is a good chance that Pitt Island will be shrouded in mist on Jan. 1.

London’s Royal Geographical Society has decreed that 2000′s first rays of sunlight will fall on Hapeka Hill on Pitt Island, the second largest of the Chatham Islands. The islands are 500 miles east of Wellington.

Towards 2000 Taskforce head David Beatson confirmed that the body coordinating the New Zealand government’s Year 2000 projects had been trying to buy exclusive TV rights on Pitt Island.

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