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Friday, August 7, 2015
August 7, 2015 News Read
By Andrew Walden @ 5:17 PM :: 3940 Views

Audio: Native Hawaiian Attorneys Skeptical of Nai Aupuni, Kanaiolowalu

Illegal Lobbying by Planned Parenthood behind New Sex Ed Program?

CDC Report Claims Hawaii Schools' Early Starting Time Makes Kids Fat Drunks

European Trade Negotiators Push Jones Act Reform

$40M CIP Released

Luke, Tokuda Against Housing First: "Placing Homeless in a Home is not Right Solution"

HNN: "We've had zero fallout in our state housing first program with 75 individuals," said Darryl Vincent, Chief Operating Officer of U. S. Vets.

U.S. Vets and Vincent have been helping Hawaii's homeless for nearly 13 years. Last year, for $1.5 million, U. S. Vets contracted with the State to provide shelter for the chronically homeless. It used the housing first philosophy. It was an approach that some legislators say might not be the most cost effective.

"A lot of that population has mental issues and other type of issues," said Rep. Sylvia Luke, (D) Makiki, Punchbowl, Nuuanu. "Placing them in a home is not going to be the right solution."

Vincent disagrees.

"It's very effective if you surround them with the right services and make sure those services are continuing and you don't let go too soon," said Vincent.

"It's been great and we think this kind of coordinated, concerted effort really works," said Kelvin Taketa, President and CEO of the Hawaii Community Foundation....

"Four million dollars over 3 years is not a lot of money, but at the same time so far 200 more families are in stable housing," said Taketa. "We think that's a good sign"

The City and County of Honolulu are also big fans.

"October 31st of this year we will have housed 115 chronically homeless households," said Jun Yang, Executive Director of Honolulu's Office of Housing. "We're well on track to meeting that need."

Despite the results, legislators say their funding needs to help more than just the chronically homeless.

"It is about supporting things like Housing First that help the chronically homeless," said Sen. Jill Tokuda, (D) Kaneohe, Kailua. "But we cannot do that at the expense, or forget, that we also have so many out there in the community that are also needing of our help."

Legislators all agree homelessness is going to be a hot topic at the Capital next session. Finding the dollars to support the fight will be heated....

read ... Lets Keep the Homeless on the Street

Over 100 homeless vets receive immediate relief

KITV: More than 100 homeless veterans came off the streets to receive immediate relief including medical attention, clothing and a meal at veteran stand down. For many it's the first time in months to get such treatment....

Dozens of community service providers came together to help place veterans who have fallen onto hard times into housing....

"The office of housing hopes to have housing units inspected and ready for occupancy as early as this month."

"We're just trying to get people signed up and ready to go all the documents ready so that once we can pull the trigger, once the unit is now available, move-in-ready, they're going to be in that unit right away."

read ... Relief

The Rules Homeless People Refuse to Follow

SA: Here are IHS’ main rules, which if violated will result in the resident’s suspension:

  • » No drugs, drug paraphernalia, alcohol or weapons allowed on property. “If someone comes to the shelter intoxicated, we will allow them entry to sleep it off,” Mitchell said. “But we may also discuss substance abuse with them.”
  • » No smoking, except outside the shelter as determined by law (20 feet from entrance).
  • » No gambling.
  • » No sexual activity (due to shared quarters).
  • » No stealing.
  • » No photographs or videos in the shelter without authorization (to protect everyone’s privacy).
  • » No physical violence against another person.
  • » No threats to another.

read ... Sex, Drugs, and Rock n Roll 

Hawaii Republicans Host Debate Watch Party

KHON: Republicans are hoping to turn things around for the next presidential election.

On Thursday, the Hawaii Republican Party hosted a watch party at the Honolulu headquarters.

Richard Fale, chair of the Honolulu County Republican Party, one of four major county organizations under the Hawaii Republican Party, says these debates bring fresh ideas and push the best candidates forward.

“When you completely dominate with one ideology and one set of ideas you are not going to get the best possible outcomes,” he said....

YOU CAN VOTE: Hawaii GOP Caucus March 8, 2016

read ... Debate

Rep Chris Lee Promises Bullying Bill to Mainland Homosexuals

HRC: ...HRC also held a reception for our legislative champions from across the country. Together, we celebrated nationwide marriage equality and the hard work of so many to attain that victory.

Minnesota State Senator Scott Dibble, a longtime friend of HRC and chief sponsor of the both the marriage equality and anti-bullying bills in Minnesota, spoke about the road ahead. He explained that legislators can make a real a difference in people’s lives and create a more fair and just society for youth everywhere.

Senator Dibble then introduced Hawaii State Representative Chris Lee. Lee, a leader in winning marriage equality in Hawaii, spoke elegantly about being both a legislator and an ally to the LGBT community. We’ll be working closely with Representative Lee and his colleagues as we work to pass an anti-bullying bill in Hawaii in the coming session....

read ... Legislators Celebrate with HRC

A&B says Sugar is Drain on Real Estate profits

SA:  Alexander & Baldwin Inc. is looking once again at perhaps exiting the sugar business on Maui in what would mean the end of Hawaii’s last sugar cane plantation.

A&B, which explored a similar move several years ago when sugar production was a drain on profits, mentioned in a conference call with stock market analysts Thursday that a renewed effort is underway to either improve its financial return on sugar or find an alternative farm model that could include diversified crops.

The comments were made after A&B reported a modest gain in second-quarter profit stemming from strong real estate sales that were offset by a $4.7 million loss from sugar plantation subsidiary Hawaiian Commercial & Sugar Co.

Overall, A&B’s net income rose 6.5 percent to $9.8 million in the three months ended June 30 from $9.2 million in the same period last year.

Revenue rose 4.8 percent to $154 million from $147 million.

Much of A&B’s profit came from selling an office complex in Texas, three residential properties on Oahu’s Kahala Avenue and five parcels on Maui. Those deals helped A&B operating profit from real estate sales surge 83 percent to $14.3 million in the quarter from $7.8 million a year earlier.

News Release: Alexander & Baldwin Reports Second Quarter 2015 Results

SA: Median home price soars to $710K

read ... Coming Soon a Sea of Condos

Hawaii Astronomy: Past, Present, and Future.”

IM: IAU panel discussion on “Hawaii Astronomy: Past, Present, and Future.” The talks lasted three hours.

The panel facilitator was Mary Beth Laychak, the Outreach Program Manager for the Canada-France-Hawaii Telescope.

The first speaker was Paul Coleman. He is a native Hawaiian who returned to Hawai`i in 2002 and now works for the University of Hawai`i’s Institute for Astronomy (IFA).

Coleman opened his talk by saying that “Hawaiians = Astronomers.” To reach Hawai`i navigators needed to rely on stars and clouds and hence all Hawaiians can trace their roots back to an astronomer. Islands could only be seen 100 miles off the coast.

He then quoted Queen Liliuokalani who said, “All the ancient Hawaiians were astronomers.” ....

WHT: UH researchers to look for life outside our galaxy

read ... Future?

After Wasting Millions Without a Plan, UH Cancer Center Hires Consultant

SA: The University of Hawaii at Manoa will pay a San Francisco-based consultant up to $250,800 to develop a business plan for the financially struggling UH Cancer Center.

Charles Cosovich, a director at publicly traded Navigant Consulting Inc., was selected through a competitive bidding process to come up with a workable business plan covering operations, expenditures and revenues at the research facility. Cosovich plans to visit the campus later this month and has proposed an aggressive timeline to complete a report by late October.

A UH task group earlier this year reported that the Cancer Center is running over budget by approximately $9.5 million a year and could run out of reserve funds in a few years.

The center’s money troubles, according to university officials, stem from a flawed business plan that assumed UH’s share of the state cigarette tax would remain steady at nearly $20 million a year to fund operations. But as fewer people smoke, the center’s share of the revenues has dropped off sharply.

Under former Director Michele Carbone, the center pursued building a new, $100 million facility in Kakaako using that faulty business plan, which has saddled the center with an $8 million annual mortgage payment it can’t afford....

read ... Consult

Kohala NIMBY group opposes pot farms there

WHT: “The new marijuana law just passed last month does not provide for the protection of our community. We want to make sure that our North Kohala community is protected from the 6,000 plants each licensee is allowed to grow,” said Lani Eugenio.

The opponents plan to attend the Action Committee meeting of the North Kohala Community Development Plan on Monday to make their wishes known. The meeting begins at 5 p.m. at the North Kohala Senior Center.

A handful of testifiers spoke on the issue at the County Council Planning Committee meeting Tuesday, where a revision of the county’s general plan was being discussed. They want the general plan to specify where such medical marijuana production centers can be located.

The state Legislature and Gov. David Ige opened the way for two licensees on the Big Island to each operate two production centers and dispensaries. The state Department of Health is required to provide for a selection process and criteria for license applicants by Jan. 4.

“We have been researching what happened in Colorado, Oregon and the Netherlands. Their problems are great,” Eugenio said. “We cannot afford to have this happen in our community and so we are preparing now because others are preparing to shove this down our throats. Our politicians have put us in this situation, and our politicians need to help us protect our community.”

Eugenio, who is the chairwoman of the CDP’s Agriculture Committee, said the goal of the CDP is for the area to produce 50 percent of the food it consumes. Eugenio, who said she is speaking as an individual and not on behalf of the CDP, worries that allowing lucrative marijuana fields will compete with the food supply.

Dispensaries and production centers will have to comply with county zoning regulations, and will not be allowed within 750 feet of a school, playground or public housing project or complex, under the new law.

They will also be required to provide both video surveillance and recording and physical security, and to take part in real-time computer monitoring of sales and inventory by the Health Department, as well as to comply with any request for production and sales records by law enforcement.

Kohala Councilwoman Margaret Wille, who’s working in changes to the county’s general plan, said she’s hoping a mechanism could be set up for communities to opt out of the marijuana production plan....

Meanwhile at Kealakehe: OHA Trustee to Use Trust Funds to Sell Marijuana?

read ... Progressivism is about what other people do, not about what the Progressives themselves do

Domestic use of plastic bags altered since law took effect

SA: Some are buying plastic bags in bulk at Sam’s Club or online (1,000 for about $14, and yes, that’s legal).

The more hard-core are going with naked bathroom trash cans and making the commitment to regularly wash them out. (Pretty nasty when that one piece of dental floss is stuck way on the bottom. Or worse.)

Much of the focus of discussion has been on the “public” side of Oahu’s new ban on plastic bags — remembering to bring your own reusable bag every time you go to the store.

The effects on the other end, however, are more private — finding replacements for all the ways those plastic bags were reused at home. From dealing with wet swimsuits to packing shoes or taking a harvest of green onions to the neighbors, people are forced to improvise.

Designated “bag drawers” in kitchens are becoming depleted. Some (who did not want to be named, because SHAME) are asking mainland relatives to save and mail their plastic bags. People are buying special bags from the pet store for dog walking/ litter box cleaning duties. Others are shopping online for biodegradable bags.

read ... People Harassed by Enviros

Radford contamination investigation uncovered suspected ordnance

HNN: Less than a week before construction on Radford High School's track came to a halt last year, workers made some unusual finds: a six-inch wide mortar fuse and an 18-inch copper sphere that one Department of Education contractor suspected was a naval mine.

Also excavated were several spent shell casings from a 50-caliber gun....

The suspected ordnance did not contain any live ammunition and was quickly destroyed by the military. Previous news reports mentioned that the soil contained unsafe levels of lead, mercury and asbestos.

But hundreds of pages of documents included in a state Health Department investigation suggest that the problem may be even bigger than many suspected.

The newly revealed Health Department records also showed that the dirt contained high levels of barium, which can be highly toxic.

Photos included in the records also showed a large amount of scrap metal, engine parts and chemical waste. The Department has issued a $1.1 million fine against the D.O.E. and its contractors over its handling of thousands of tons toxic soil from the Radford, where the Navy had operated a dump before the school was built.

Most of that contaminated soil wound up stockpiled at a residential development in Kapolei but several tons were sent to a Kaneohe home and a Kailua landfill.

The DOE declined comment on the documents. Last month, a spokesman said the suspected ordnance was investigated by the Navy, Honolulu Police and the Health Department....

read ... Radford

Lava scare cost DOE millions in school moves

KHON: Always Investigating found out it cost more than $5 million to set up that new satellite campus and deal with effects on other area schools.

But lava spared the old Keonepoko Elementary, and that meant the heavy lifting happened all over again, heading back to Keonepoko for the 2015-16 school year that just started.

The return move will cost another $1.5 million, but that bill doesn’t tell the whole story. Besides just moving the desks and chairs back, the whole campus had to be cleaned and painted, water-damaged classrooms repaired, upgrades made to the play court, ramps. Crews even put up new white boards....

It’s not the end of the story for those 10 portables that served as what they called “Keonepoko North” all last school year. The portables cost nearly $4 million to lease and now the DOE wants to buy them and move them to Oahu to relieve overcrowding on some campuses. Each can hold about 25 students....

The DOE says it’s submitted for federal disaster reimbursement for a total $6.5 million in school relocation and associated expenses for the Big Island lava near-miss, and hopes to get at least 75 percent of that reimbursed....

read ... Lava



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