Caldwell refuses to sign Council Budget Bills
Ige in DC to Teach Feds How to use Green Energy Hype to Jack Up Rates, Taxes
Ouch! Mounting Medicare Cuts Hurt Hawaii Hospitals
University of Hawaii: The empty ‘marketplace of ideas’
Internal Report: Gay Human Rights Campaign a Judgmental White Men’s Club
Feds Extend Hawaii NCLB Waiver
Humpback Blowback: Over 3,000 Testify on Federal Sanctuary Expansion
KGI: Federal officials have collected more than 3,000 written testimonies about proposed changes to the humpback whale sanctuary.
Anne Walton, the sanctuary’s program analyst, said staff members for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration will spend the coming months sorting the testimonies and replying with general responses based on the subject matter addressed in the comments.
NOAA staff will then begin to draft a final management plan, a process Walton said could take about a year. The plan must be approved by Congress and signed by the governor before it can be implemented.
“What’s going to be included and what’s not going to be included in the plan will change based on what’s in the comments,” she said.
The 90-day public comment period ended Friday. As of Thursday, NOAA had received 3,074 comments, Walton said. Officials are still tallying those postmarked or emailed on Friday....
read ... Humpback Blowback
Civil Beat Witch-hunt Continues--One Very Confused White Supremacist
CB: ...The leader of an (alleged) white supremacist group said to have influenced (weasel words) the Charleston, S.C., church shooting suspect (6 degrees of separation) contributed $2,000 to the campaign of Charles Djou, the former Hawaii congressman.
The information about Djou (who is Thai-Chinese) was included in an article Monday by The Guardian, which reported that Earl Holt also donated tens of thousands of dollars to Republican presidential candidate Ted Cruz ... (who is Spanish, as well as two Black congressional candidates--Mia Love and Alan West and another Spanish congressional candidate, Quico Canseco, thus proving that he is one very confused white supremacist, but that's ok because our job here at Civil Beat is to help Omidyar ingratiate himself with Hawaii's political power structure so he can score corporate welfare....)
Djou, in a phone interview with Civil Beat midday Tuesday, said, “I completely, thoroughly, categorically reject his views on white supremacy. They do not reflect mine, and I had no idea that these were his views or positions.”
Asked if he knew Holt, Djou, said, “I have never met him, never spoken to him. I have no idea who he is.” (...and neither does anybody else, but the lords of political correctness tell us Holt is a raaaaacist and we better go along with it or be tarred by the same brush....)
The former congressman, state legislator and member of the Honolulu City Council said he planned to reject the $2,000, either by returning it to the donor or donating it to a charity. But first he said he needed to check with the FEC on what is allowed....
read ... Another Civil Beat Hit Job
Star-Adv to Police: Don't Arrest Telescope Protesters
SA: The public can expect a showdown Wednesday as work resumes on the Thirty Meter Telescope. The conflict looms with an implicit warning: Both sides in this fight must not jockey for short-term advantages. Such gains are sure to produce the worst final outcomes for everyone.
State and county officials seeking to enforce the permit allowing crews on-site for the controversial $1.4 billion Mauna Kea project face a difficult challenge. The onus is on them to protect the crews' rightful access without allowing the conflict to escalate....
In April, social media fueled the initial protest by Native Hawaiian "protector" groups opposing the telescope project. It drew a rush of offshore supporters, and the arrests of 31 on the mountain raised its profile even further.
The goal of authorities should be to avoid a repeat performance. Protesters have pledged "kapu aloha" (nonviolent protest), and law enforcement must adopt a similar stance.
For their part, the protesters need to consider carefully the gains they've already made in the movement to protect Mauna Kea, considered a sacred place within Hawaiian culture. TMT opponents already have persuaded many people that the state has provided inadequate stewardship of the mountain....
In the end, intransigence will not further the larger cause of Native Hawaiian advancement, but only increase ire among Hawaii's community at large....
SA: Protesters vow to stop telescope construction from resuming
read ... Let them have a veto
Corrupt Charter School Could Leave Taxpayers on the Hook for Debts
CB: Unlike most states, where charter schools are registered as private companies or nonprofit corporations, charters in Hawaii are state agencies. That means the state may be responsible for debts if the school closes....
When the commission began reviewing the school’s finances, it came across roughly $100,000 in questionable expenditures that it referred to the Attorney General’s office. The charter school’s director and two employees were eventually arrested, but are not facing charges....
The biggest debt is back rent. The school’s bookkeeper was possibly owed a little money. There was an outstanding Xerox lease that the commission is trying to find someone to take over.
As of June 15, no one had responded to the newspaper announcement.
The debts are still being finalized, but could run from $200,000 to $400,000....
Some furniture and old computers brought in about $6,000. The school had already sold off its vans before the commission initiated closure, and at least one of those is currently listed for parts on Craigslist by an auto recycling company.
Totally Related: Oahu Burial Council Chair on Payroll of Kakaako Developer
read ... Cost of Corruption
Caldwell vs Martin 2016?
CB: ...Caldwell wrote in a June 22 letter to council members that he “will not be discouraged” by their “failure” to fund the positions, and will instead shift money around to maintain the Office of Strategic Development staffers already on hand.
The mayor took several swipes at Martin on Monday. In a press release, Caldwell highlighted that since Martin took office in 2011 he added six new positions to the council staff for a total cost of nearly $1 million. Three of those positions, including a housing coordinator and someone to help with rail oversight, were included in the upcoming budget.
Caldwell also went after Martin for nominating his former staffer, Kimberly Ribellia, to be the city’s new deputy city clerk.
The mayor’s press release noted that Ribellia, whose appointment was approved earlier this month, will be paid $125,000 and was hired “with no public vetting or advance notice, and over the objections of the outgoing longtime City Clerk and many of the experienced career staff members of the City.”
Caldwell said he also had problems with earmarks inserted into the budget by council members, which has been an ongoing concern for the mayor. He didn’t like that the council boosted the capital budget by $75 million. And he told council members that they don’t have the authority to approve or modify HART’s budget under the city charter.
Martin called Caldwell’s attacks on him out of place, and told Civil Beat that the mayor was clearly using the opportunity to play politics in anticipation of 2016.
“It’s unfortunate for somebody who’s always looking over his shoulder to personally attack me,” Martin said. “From the legislative perspective, the budget is what it is. We’re committed to work with the administration to address the priorities of our city and not be overly concerned with any personality conflicts.”
Martin said he not made a decision on whether to run for mayor in 2016....
Flashback: Convicted Cocaine Dealer replaces Advertiser columnist as Ernie Martin’s Campaign Treasurer
read ... Caldwell vs Martin
Why Do We Tax Food in Paradise?
CB: Hawaii has the most expensive food in the nation, and yet the regressive tax on food endures. That needs to change....
Given the overall high cost of living here in Hawaii, there is a strong argument that we have even more reason than other states to exempt groceries from the general excise tax.
A bill was introduced in 2014 to exempt food and medical services. It gained support from a range of groups — including theHawaii Food Industry Association, the Grassroot Institute of Hawaii, the Hawaii Medical Association, and the Hawaii Primary Care Association — but was deferred by the first committee to hear it.
A similar measure was introduced this year and was never scheduled for a hearing. There has been little public engagement on the issue and the support from industry groups has not been enough to overcome concerns among legislators over the amount of money the state government would lose if groceries were exempted....
read ... Why?
Homeless Families Have Free Housing Waiting, Not Motivated to Sign paperwork
KHON: Social service workers say that housing is available now for several families with children who were displaced today, but that the adults haven't followed through to complete the process yet.
“These particular families that you were speaking with, we already have housing first units lined up for them, all they need to do is work with our outreach workers that are here every day to just go and get their free documentation and just get into the process, but sometimes it does take a little bit of motivation,” said Kimo Carvalho of the Institute of Human Services.
Some of the homeless have moved to the Kakaako encampment area where they believe the city is hesitant to enforce SPO laws, while others have moved to emergency shelters.
read ... Motivation Needed
47 Homeless Flown Back to Mainland
HNN: Thompson is just one of the 47 people who have successfully used the Airline Relocation Program to find permanent housing including four families. But not everyone is eligible for a plane ticket. Each applicant has to be vetted by a case worker.
"They want to ensure that they are not just shifting homelessness across the county. So they make sure they have a safety net on the receiving end whether it's a family member or a service provider," said Institute of Human Services Community Relations Director Kimo Carvalho.
read ... 47 down ...
Former PUC chair says solar industry pursing narrow self-interest in opposing NextEra buyout
ILind: ...I was quite interested to stumble across her new blog, Mina Morita Energy Dynamics, which is highly critical of the solar industry’s aggressive attacks on the proposed Hawaiian Electric-NextEra merger.
Here’s what Morita had to say a couple of days ago about The Alliance for Solar Choice: “Lurking in the background, purely to protect its own self interest and increase its market share, its motivation is a bigger threat to Hawaii’s electrical system” than NextEra.
In another post in early June, she wrote:
First of all, let me clarify – I am neither for or against the merger nor am I for or against rooftop solar or distributed generation. However, I am pragmatic and concerned that people are reacting emotionally and taking positions and making decisions that may not be cost-effective and provide only short-term gains for a few. The guerrilla tactics being used by these two entities through the press and social media only detract from real issues, the technical and economic challenges that Hawaii’s electric systems face in transforming a system to benefit all.
Are TASC and KULOLO (Keep Our Utilities Locally Owned and Locally Operated) acting in the public interest for the public good? I’m not sure, but it sure looks and smells like corporate business as usual to me. With the Sierra Club as the “local” front man, it’s just a move to increase rooftop pv market share and a promotion of self-interest wrapped up as democratization of power generation. I cannot help but feel that Hawaii is being used as the poster child to preserve net metering programs and what happens here will influence and affect these companies’ profitability nationwide thus their active interest, concern and the distractions.
The post then runs through the founding members of TASC and ends with this observation:
The local effort to stop the big corporate takeover isn’t so “local.” And if you think local ownership is the panacea you are living in la-la land. Sorry to be so harsh but this lack of understanding of what is happening to our electric system is serious and cannot be left to the un- and ill- informed....
read ... Former PUC chair says solar industry pursing narrow self-interest
$90M Kahuku wind farm project on agenda for public meeting Tuesday
PBN: California-based Champlin Hawaii Holdings LLC plans to hold a public meeting Tuesday regarding its proposed $90 million Na Pua Makani wind farm in Kahuku on Oahu’s North Shore.
The meeting, which will be held at the Kahuku Village Association Community Center and also include a representative from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, will address the 24-megawatt wind farm project’s draft environmental impact statement....
The Institute for Human Services says its goal is to help 120 people relocate and get back on their feet on mainland by November. This program was paid for by the hospitality industry in Waikiki.
CB: Hawaii May be Only State Willing to Go Along With Floating Wind Farms
read ... Kahuku
Kenoi Fails on Key Hilo Tourism Project
HTH: ...In late March, Kenoi told those gathered at a meeting of the Japanese Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Hawaii that the Banyan area is in need of urgent attention. He said that within a couple of weeks he expected to announce a new arrangement with the state, which manages the area and its leases.
Three months later, no details.
“At this time … we are still working on it and do not have any substantive information to share,” County Managing Director Wally Lau wrote in an email Friday.
The Tribune-Herald repeatedly has inquired about the plan since early April. After initially indicating he would provide an update April 8, Peter Boylan, a spokesman for Kenoi who resigned from the position earlier this month, said it is a “complex issue” with a lot of moving parts.
Asked again later that month, Boylan wrote, “What I am getting is we are not solid on our solution yet and need more time to work it out with (the) state.”
In January, lawmakers introduced companion bills aimed at establishing an advisory committee to examine the barriers hindering the redevelopment of visitor facilities and infrastructure in the Banyan Drive area, on the Waiakea Peninsula.
Rep. Mark Nakashima, D-Hamakua, Hilo, said the reason House Bill 708, which he co-introduced, never received a hearing is because Kenoi indicated he wanted to take the lead on the effort....
read ... Kenoi Fails
HPD Officer Allegedly Caught Breaking into House
SA: Richard Staszyn, an eight-year veteran of the police force, faces one count of second-degree criminal trespass and another charge of fourth-degree criminal property damage. Both charges are misdemeanors.
He has been placed on restricted duty.
Staszyn was caught trying to break into a Kaneohe residence at 8:25 p.m. after a woman called police saying she saw a man was trying to force his way into her house.
His trial will be held at 9:30 a.m. July 23 in Kaneohe District Court....
read ... Burglar?
Council lets Kauai police purchase 105 body cameras, Tasers
SA: The Kauai Police Department has received approval by the County Council to purchase 105 body cameras for police officers.
The Council unanimously approved the Police Department's request Wednesday to purchase 105 Axon Flex cameras and mounts from Taser International Inc., a manufacturing company based in Scottsdale, Ariz. The purchase of the cameras is part of an Officers Safety Package deal from the company that includes unlimited video storage for the body cameras and 105 X26P Tasers, battery packs and holsters.
To cover the normal wear and tear of the equipment, the package also covers warranty services to replace the body cameras at 30 months and five years and the Tasers at five years.
KITV: Maui police considering buying body cams
read ... Kauai
Muslims Demand UH Divest from Israel
KL: "We can’t redefine anti-Semitism for political purposes." But we're gonna try.
"...some Palestinians commit horrid crimes against Jews, Zionists and Israelis. It is correct to say that people fleeing a Holocaust deserve a place to live. It’s also true that it would be very difficult to be an Orthodox Jew walking down the streets of Cairo or Ramallah. There is no question that anti-Semitism is alive and well, and there are crimes against Jews daily...." And now we want UH to help us finish the job....
UH: UH Appoints Administrator in Charge of Harassment
read ... Deal with the Devil: Hand Israel to the Muslims and Maybe they won't bother us
Two Miles of Fencing Torn Down: To Liberate Pigs, Goats?
KHON: Nearly two miles of fencing, surrounding the Pu‘u Maka‘ala Natural Area Reserve (NAR), built in the early part of this decade, was recently cut and destroyed by vandals.
The fencing is intended to keep feral goats, pigs and other invasive animals away from native plants.
This is not the first time fencing in two units within this NAR was vandalized. A routine inspection of the fencing by NAR staff from the DLNR Division of Forestry and Wildlife (DOFAW) revealed that vandals had cut through multiple sections of fence at intervals of 5-10 meters top to bottom.
read ... Fence
Study: Scant evidence that medical pot helps many illnesses
AP: Medical marijuana has not been proven to work for many illnesses that state laws have approved it for, according to the first comprehensive analysis of research on its potential benefits....
The analysis is among several medical marijuana articles published Tuesday in the Journal of the American Medical Association. They include a small study suggesting that many brand labels for edible marijuana products list inaccurate amounts of active ingredients. More than half of brands tested had much lower amounts than labeled, meaning users might get no effect....
read ... Is anybody really surprised by this?
Two Military Trannies Switch Gender, Hook Up--Get Invited to White House
AFT: ...Both Senior Airman (sic) Logan Ireland (female, looks male) and Army Cpl. Laila Villanueva (male, looks female) were the subject of the recent documentary “Transgender, at War and in Love,” directed and produced by Fiona Dawson.
The Air Force has been supportive of Ireland’s decision to serve as an openly transgender airman (sic). He (sic) will attend Wednesday’s event in a male dress blue uniform.
“Being invited to the White House as an actively serving transgender airman (sic) is one of the most humbling experiences of my life so far,” Ireland said in a statement emailed to Air Force Times. “To be able to attend in my (sic) male dress blues is ground breaking.
“For the first time I will be myself (read that over and over again slowly) when I put on my blues, and I will carry a newfound sense of pride. Representing my Air Force at the White House is a great honor. However, being able to represent the more than 15,000 transgender military members that are still serving in silence is why I am there.” (IQ Test: There are 15,000 trannies in the military T or F?)
In the documentary, Villanueva says the Army has not been supportive of her (sic) transition to (pretend to be) a woman. Villanueva, a nurse at Tripler Army Medical Center, Hawaii, said she (sic) has been asked to tell patients to treat her as male.
She (sic) will attend the White House event in civilian attire.
“To be able to attend this event is quite surreal in itself,” Villanueva said in a statement to Air Force Times. “But to be able to attend as my authentic self is even more amazing. Although I have not been permitted to wear the female uniform, to be there dressed and seen as the person I am is good enough for me. I will be amongst other members who have only dreamt of being where we are at today.”
read ... Trannies are a Superior Life Form. Bow Down.
Lawsuit: Man Claims he Got AIDS from Honolulu Blood Transfusion
HONOLULU - A man claims he got AIDS from a blood transfusion supplied by the Blood Bank of Hawaii and the American Red Cross, in O'ahu First Circuit Court. LINK: PDF
Related: F.D.A. Easing Ban on Gays, to Let Some Give Blood
read ... Blood