Judge finds state breached home lands obligations to Hawaiians (30 years of Democrat mismanagement)
A Circuit Court judge has ruled that the state breached its fiduciary obligation to administer the Department of Hawaiian Home Lands for the benefit of native Hawaiians between 1959 and 1988. The next step in the case is for Circuit Judge Eden Hifo to determine monetary damages.
Hifo, in the decision released today, said that there is "clear and convincing evidence" that breaches by the state "were a substantial factor or legal cause of eligible Native Hawaiians not being placed on the land."
ADV: Hawaii took too long to award leases to Native Hawaiians, court rules
SB: Court rules state failed on trust lands
HGEA vs HSTA: Hospitals hurting
Isle facilities lost $187 million on patient care last year, a figure that is likely to jump in 2010 as more people lose jobs and insurance, a report warns....
REALITY: HGEA vs HSTA: The coming legislative budget crisis , Hawaii Hospitals: Not Quite Catching Up To Africa
ADV: Hawaii hospitals in red for 9th year
SB Warns: Obama still has 3 years to get the job done (Hawaii hospitals are a model for Obamacare....)
No New Ideas from Senate Democrats: Proposals raid funds for more school
Proposals floating in the Senate would restore public school days lost to teacher furloughs by raiding the $180 million Hurricane Relief Fund or a combination of the disaster fund and federal stimulus dollars.
So far, 21 of 51 House members are said to be supportive of a special session — 13 members short of the two-thirds that would be needed.
House leaders including Speaker Calvin Say and Finance Chairman Marcus Oshiro have expressed little support. Gov. Linda Lingle also says a special session would be premature.
Espero has lined up support from 15 of 25 senators, two short of the threshold.
(No funding for local and state government hurricane relief measures? That "rely on the feds" policy didn't work too good in New Orleans did it?)
Kanu Hawaii rallies to demand tax increase
The groups, Save Our Schools Hawaii and Hawaii Education Matters, said they'll be sign-waving to bring attention to the problem of Furlough Fridays, as well as providing science activities for children.
"There is a solution to this crisis — funding can and must be restored to the public schools," Save Our Schools Hawaii spokeswoman Clare Hanusz said.
EVERTYTHING YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT KANU HAWAII: Furloughs: How Unions and the DoE aim to co-opt protesting parents
SB: Tackle schools' unique hurdles
Embattled by Furlough Friday furor, a jab by the federal education secretary and national humiliation, Hawaii's school system must find a way to rebound.
(No, the DoE should dissolve itself by making every school a charter school)
Much of the problem with Hawaii's schools derives from the fact that it is the only statewide system and derives its revenue from the state income and excise taxes....One consequence of that difference is that the Hawaii State Teachers Association lines up with other public employee unions in adversarial labor negotiations with the state.
(As explained here: HGEA vs HSTA: The coming legislative budget crisis)
Another is that important aspects of school policies emanate from labor contracts. For example, labor contracts in Hawaii determine the number of school days in a year and instructional minutes. In other states, the number of instructional hours per year or minimum school days and hours per day are set by law or regulation. Clearly, those decisions should be made as public policy rather than terms of a union contract.
(This means making the DoE a State Department, and abolishing the useless, surgically altered BoE in order to create accountability.)
The goal is enhanced by neighborhood involvement that has become natural at local school districts across the country. Having rejected Gov. Linda Lingle's attempt to create local districts, the state should find other methods to improve Hawaii's schools by bringing community goals to the forefront.
(So come out with it already--MAKE EVERY DoE SCHOOL A CHARTER SCHOOL. Oh, that's right. Then who would be around at DoE HQ to waste millions on useless "professional services" contracts???)
Third furlough lawsuit claims rights violation
A third federal lawsuit has been filed to block Furlough Fridays, this one claiming that the decision to shut public schools for 17 days violates students' rights to due process under the U.S. Constitution.
The latest complaint contends that shortening the school year by 17 days without giving adequate notice and opportunity for public comment violated students' rights to due process of law.
"We have a constitutionally created educational system and a mandatory school year," said Carl Varady, one of the attorneys for the students, who were not named publicly. "Why is that different from any other state-created benefit like welfare or public health? The Supreme Court has recognized that you cannot take away health care and other social welfare benefits without due process. Why can you take away school?"
More suspensions, arrests expected in Keaau High campus fights (just another day in the DoE)
The letter from acting principal Ron Jarvis said that school officials and police will go through security camera footage and witness statements in an attempt to identify "students who instigated and/or encouraged the fights." The letter said that those students "will also be disciplined."
"There is footage, so there will possibly be more kids arrested or suspended, and that will possibly go on for the next few days," Jarvis told the Tribune-Herald yesterday morning. Asked how many students were suspended, he did not go into specifics, saying there were "multiple" suspensions and "maybe at this point there are a couple pending."
(We must raise taxes immediately so we can have even more school days just like this one!)
Schools' shortcomings extend far beyond budget
When my daughter started kindergarten, she was reading at first-grade level, writing like an adult, and could spell three letter words. At her report card conference, the teacher said that she was one of two children who could read like that. However, she does not give MEs ("meets with excellence," the equivalent of an "A"). "Otherwise, she wouldn't need to be in kindergarten," the teacher explained.
The grading system continues to work against my daughter in first grade. The teacher showed me a rubric that is used to show what a child should know by the end of first grade. Yet that end-of-the-year rubric is used to grade my daughter's first nine weeks' performance. I told the teacher that I have never heard of such a ludicrous grading system. I emphasized that at least half of the first-graders would get an MP (meets with proficiency, similar to a "B" or "C"). That would indicate to a school with a more traditional grading system that my child was just average.
The teacher admitted that my daughter was in the upper echelon, but still defended the asinine rubric and the assigned grade. On another worksheet with a rubric stapled to it, my daughter did not miss anything, but was given the grade of an MP. I inquired about it and was told that there is no ME for that rubric. So a student deserving an ME (or an "A") won't receive it, because the rubric doesn't allow it.
(WE MUST RAISE TAXES IMMEDIATELY TO SAVE THIS GLORIOUS SYSTEM!!!!!)
Hearing to be held in American Samoa on pre-tsunami preparedness
House Homeland Security Committee Chairman Maugaoali'i S. Anoai says the seriousness of the recent disaster warrants an investigation.
Much of the concern in the House has centered on community preparedness and an ineffective emergency alarm system.
RELATED: Samoa Democrats' Disaster warning funds 'spent on TVs'
Hawaii GOP calls East Coast elections a harbinger
Kaauwai said during a telephone press conference Wednesday that the same issues that led voters to choose Republicans in those contests also worry Hawaii residents.
RELATED: 2009 Elections: The State of Conservatism is Strong , Ka`auwai: GOP NJ win "proves traditionally Democrat states can and will vote Republican" , UPDATE Elections NY-NJ-VA-CA: Blue-State, Purple-State voters rejecting Obamanomics
State Land Department's Proposal for Hawaii's Small Boat Harbors Would Send Anchoring Fees Skyrocketing
the cost of anchoring my small boat, say in Hanalei Bay, would skyrocket from a reported $30 to over $1,000 per month. $1,000 per month to anchor (on MY anchor!) a boat that cost me $5,000?
Hawaii Supreme Court to hear Turtle Bay EIS case
Thursday, December 17, 2009, 9:00 a.m. - Unite Here! Local 5 v. City and County of Honolulu, No. 28602 (HAWSCT). The Supreme Court is reviewing the ICA's conclusion that unless the project changes, a supplemental EIS is not required under the Hawaii Environmental Policy Act, Haw. Rev. Stat. ch. 343.... Under HRS Chapter 343 an its enabling rules, is a supplemental environmental review required when there are significant changes to a project's circumstances, such as increased environmental and community impacts, or are supplemental reviews limited solely to changes in project design?
(Is there any doubt that the Hawaii Supreme Court will take this opportunity to hand yet another lever of power to the enviro shake down artists? This is why Mufi's campaign is based on a delusion.)
RELATED: Is A Change In "Context," But Not The Project, Enough To Trigger Supplemental EIS?
Former Hawaii Air Ambulance nurse alleges harassment
She said soon after she started with the company unsolicited, risque text messages started arriving from Jonathan Sneed, chief field training officer, who trains new hires.
Matt Jenkins, who has been promoted from Kauai manager to chief flight nurse, allegedly refused to train Masias, would not share patient information on cases Jenkins and Masias worked on together, and called obstetrics nurses "monkeys," she said....
Cheryl Bowers, Eagle Air vice president, initially asked where The Garden Island had received information on a confidential investigation and threatened legal action if the newspaper published a story. Then later last evening she sent a statement via fax.