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This update: 15th April, 2015
An exclusive summary by the website author who is a former BBC TV and radio journalist
The following  - unless otherwise credited - is a summary of the latest stories from  Cook Islands News,  the daily newspaper of the Cook Islands which is published Monday to Saturday inclusive.

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Its web site www.cookislandsnews.com is now updated daily.  The summary is published with the permission of the copyright owners Cook Islands News Ltd.     Click on any underlined headlines for the full story on the newpaper's own website.   Photos unless otherwise credited are copyright Cook Islands News
Matt Gifford
A Kiwi musician is planning to capture his Penrhyn heritage of hymns and songs
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The 60 residents of remote Palmerston have 24 hour power for the first time, thanks to the sun
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Palmerston's solar power station
A new set of coins is being minted to celebrate 50 years of self-government in the Cook Islands, although most will retain the current designs
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$1 Cook Islands coin
Atiu has a new mayor and he's putting agriculture and tourism at the top of his agenda.  Ina Mokoroa,  who was Island Secretary from 2009 to 2014,  said he also wanted to strengthen the Island's tiny airport.   Atiu is the third most visited of the Cook Islands but annual tourist numbers are only in the hundreds.   Mokoroa succeeds Taoro Brown who was dismissed after being convicted of receiving stolen goods.  

Atiu's new mayor makes agriculture a priority
A long awaited referendum on Sunday flights to Aitutaki will be held on 22 April.  But the decision won't be binding on the government.  Internal airline, Air Rarotonga has been operating Sunday flights since June 2008 and it's helped boosted the number of tourists to the island.  Opposition has come from islanders who believe Sunday is a sacred day when businesses shouldn't operate.  All islanders who were registered to vote in last year's general election will be eligible to participate the referendum.  The exact wording of the question they'll be asked hasn't been decided yet.  Photo: Air Rarotonga

Air Rarotonga plane over Aitutaki
Plans to develop a Sheraton resort complex on Rarotonga might finally go ahead 30 years after the original project almost bankrupted the Cook Islands government.   A lawyer acting for the Mirage Group of New Zealand has told the government they're ready to continue an environmental impact assessment which was started last year and stopped after their development partner pulled out of  project.  But a final decision on whether the complex is built at an estimated cost of NZ$40 million will depend on a public consultation which is likely to take months.  The plans proposed last year were for a 5 star complex with 198 hotel rooms and 16 serviced apartments, but the lawyer won't comment on what might be planned now. Right: the rotting remains of the previous development (Website author's own photo)

The remains of the previous attempt to develop
An opposition party MP is claiming poor planning around the biggest infrastructure project in Islands' history could kill the tourism business in the Muri area of Rarotonga.  Democrat, Tama Tuavera  who represents the area says a decision to postpone installing new water mains will halt progress on much needed road repairs.  The majority of Rarotonga's tourist accommodation is located in the area.  Tuavera says the road through it is full of potholes, is hit by frequent flooding and the narrow width poses a constant danger to tourists and residents.
Left: The Pacific Resort, Rarotonga is one of the many tourist developments along the road through Muri (Photo: Pacific Resort)
Golden Oldies dancer of the year
Golden oldies have got the annual dancer of the year competition off to a colourful and passionate start.  Merle Pukerua (left) picked up the winner's trophy in front of an enthusiastic crowd on Rarotonga.   The junior and intermediate contests take place later this week, and the fiercely fought competiton will climax with the Senior Dancer of the Year event at the National Auditorium a week on Thursday.