Stabbings, Kidnapping and Feces: Homeless Drug Addicts Trash State Libraries
SA: … Hawaii’s 51-branch public library system is looking to beef up security following a rough patch of vandalism and violent confrontations including an attempted kidnapping.
The Hawaii State Public Library System wants to hire more security guards and install security cameras to help safeguard at least 11 branches identified as having endured the worst of the incidents….
“The staff has faced verbal abuse, knives pulled out on security guards. There’s been spitting, throwing, destruction of library laptops, physical attacks on staff as they tried to leave work,” Aldrich told the board.
The outside of buildings has also become a target. In some locations, she said, library staff have arrived to work only to find human waste smeared on doors, broken windows and garbage strewn about, she said.
Staff members have had their cars scratched with keys and tires slashed, while there have been stabbings after hours in parking lots. There was also an attempted kidnapping that occurred in the parking lot at the Kailua-Kona branch, an apparent domestic incident….
In addition, some homeless people have taken to spending nights on library grounds and that can result in trash being left behind and other problems (ie needles).
read … Hawaii libraries seek upgrade in security following coronavirus pandemic crime wave
Fewer visitors to Oahu in 2020 did not cause significant drop in electricity, water and sewer consumption
SA: … Based on popular theory, the absence of visitors should have caused a corresponding drop in Oahu’s electricity, water, solid waste and sewer consumption.
But it didn’t, according to new research from state Chief Economist Eugene Tian, who recently analyzed data from Hawaiian Electric Co., the Honolulu Board of Water Supply and the city Department of Environmental Services, which manages Oahu’s wastewater and solid waste systems.
Tian, of the Department of Business, Economic Development and Tourism, said he was surprised to find that “the impact of tourism on Oahu’s natural resource (sensitivity) is minimal.”
Based on the Oahu numbers, Tian extrapolated that if tourism were completely shut down in the state, statewide electricity sales in terms of dollars would decrease by only 14.7%, while water charges would only decrease by 10.7%….
Tian said a reason that hotel utility consumption in 2020 didn’t drop as dramatically as the visitor count was because a fixed cost for common area usage occurred even when properties were shut down.
On the flip side, Tian said electricity consumption in the residential sector increased by 6.2% in 2020 as compared to 2019….
CB: Even with relatively few guests, hotels used 8.7% of the electricity consumed on Oahu in 2020.
read … Fewer visitors to Oahu in 2020 did not cause significant drop in electricity, water and sewer consumption
Pushing Family Windfarm, Gary Gill Returns To Politics In Bid For State House
CB: … Gary Gill, a member of the Honolulu City Council between 1987 and 1994 and chair for those last two years, wants to represent District 25 (Makiki, Punchbowl, Nuuanu, Dowsett Highlands, Pacific Heights and Pauoa).
That’s the seat currently held by Rep. Sylvia Luke, but she is running for lieutenant governor 2022….
(Translation: If I can win this seat, I can push my family windfarm through.)
read … Gary Gill Returns To Politics In Bid For State House
US Lawmakers Warn The Clock Is Ticking On COFA Negotiations
CB: … President Joe Biden’s administration is under fire for its slow progress toward renegotiating key international agreements with three Pacific nations amid growing concern about China’s competing influence in the region.
Earlier this month, top Interior Department and State Department officials visited Hawaii and participated in informal talks about renegotiating the Pacific treaties, the first in-person meeting since Biden was elected.
That same week, 10 members of Congress, including Hawaii Reps. Ed Case and Kai Kahele, sent a letter to the White House urging the Biden administration to appoint a lead negotiator.
“This individual should ensure that unfulfilled Compact law commitments are honored, and that the U.S. is not cutting aid to our strategic partners with maritime security in the Pacific hanging in the balance,” the lawmakers wrote….
read … US Lawmakers Warn The Clock Is Ticking On COFA Negotiations
‘Our keiki deserve it’: Calls grow for tougher sentencing in child murder cases
HNN: … Botelho has been fighting for tougher penalties for murderers since her son Joel, an all-star quarterback for Castle High School, was gunned down in Kaneohe in 2011.
She believes that killing a child, no matter the age, should be a first-degree murder charge — that carries an automatic life sentence without parole.
“We need support we need people to come and testify. We need a public outcry on this because we cannot sit back anymore or watch children die at the hands of their foster parents, their parents or any adult,” Botelho said.
“Our community needs it, and our keiki deserve it, we are supposed to protect them,” said another advocate, Kimberlyn Scott.
Scott’s daughter Charli was pregnant when she was brutally murdered by her ex-boyfriend Steven Capobianco on Maui in 2014.
She too wants Hawaii’s law amended to make it an automatic first-degree murder charge if you kill any child. It’s the same penalty as if you kill a law enforcement officer, judge or prosecutor.
“Whoever did this to her. They deserve to be penalized to the fullest extent of the law, and that works as a preventative as well because it shows that we take this seriously as a community and we won’t tolerate it,” Scott said.
“Forty-two other states have children on their first-degree murder law, we do not,” said Botelho.
Botelho said they hope to have a bill ready by January for next year’s legislative session….
Isaac and Lehua Kalua are both charged with second-degree murder for allegedly killing their adoptive daughter 6-year-old Isabella “Ariel” Kalua.
Normally, a second-degree murder charge in Hawaii carries a penalty of life in person with the possibility of parole.
However, an enhanced sentencing applies to children 8 years old and younger. Therefore, the Kaluas face a life sentence without parole….
read … ‘Our keiki deserve it’: Calls grow for tougher sentencing in child murder cases
Condominium owners face steep costs to comply with fire safety measures
SA: … A bill under consideration by the Honolulu City Council would extend the deadline for condominiums to install fire sprinklers to 2033 — three years beyond the current deadline established in response to the deadly 2017 Marco Polo fire.
Bill 37, introduced by Councilmember Carol Fukunaga, also allows buildings to apply for a year’s extension and provides more time for condos that opt not to install sprinklers to pass “life safety evaluations.” The measure passed unanimously out of second reading at last week’s full Council meeting and is expected to be heard in the Public Infrastructure and Technology Committee on Wednesday….
Four people died in the July 14, 2017, fire at the Marco Polo condominium, which was built in 1971, before the city began mandating sprinklers in high-rises. In the wake of the deadly blaze, the city passed an ordinance requiring residential buildings over 10 stories to undergo a fire safety assessment within three years and to pass the evaluation within six years.
Subsequent legislation in 2018 allowed condo associations to forgo the safety evaluation if fire sprinklers are installed.
Buildings that opt to install sprinklers currently have until spring 2030 to complete the projects but may apply for an extension to 2033. However, buildings 20 floors and taller must install sprinklers in their common areas by spring 2026, and buildings with 10 to 19 floors must have sprinklers in common areas by spring 2028.
Fukunaga’s bill would get rid of the tiered deadline for fire sprinkler installation in common rooms and extend the deadline for passing life safety evaluations to spring 2025.
At the time the fire safety laws were passed, the Honolulu Fire Department identified 377 residential high-rises, with an estimated 50,000 residents, as being without fire sprinklers….
read … Condominium owners face steep costs to comply with fire safety measures
Hawaii Is Getting Even More Expensive. We Need To Do Something About That
CB: … The first thing that we need to do is demand that all elected government offices reopen immediately, and we must immediately require in-person hearings and meetings to discuss the economic crisis. We need to make the testimonies of our suffering and daily battles known to those who have forgotten about us. So long as elected officials hide behind Covid, they’re also free to hide from the public’s anger.
Second, our local government needs to find as many ways as possible to get out of the way of people just trying to live or work here in Hawaii. As a start, we should strongly consider reducing or eliminating altogether taxes for the lowest-income groups to give them more breathing room.
We should also look at lowering vehicle registration fees, so that people who need to use a car for work aren’t penalized for owning a vehicle. Many people need to drive to work to feed their families, and expensive registration fees can add to the financial burden of people barely making ends meet as it is.
Last but not least, we need to find a way to reform property taxes in Hawaii so that when real estate developments build up around properties that Native Hawaiians have lived in for generations, the locals aren’t taxed to the point of having to sell their land. We need to remember that cultural and personal pride are linked to land ownership and our laws need to protect the people who have lived here all their lives.
Our elected officials are far too comfortable with the crisis we’re dealing with. The time for action is now.
read … Hawaii Is Getting Even More Expensive. We Need To Do Something About That
UH students protest outside TKE house after alleged drugging incidents
KITV: … Dozens of University of Hawaii students rallied outside of the Tau Kappa Epsilon fraternity house on Sunday, demanding those inside take accountability after women alleged their drinks were drugged at a fraternity party months ago….
"We were both roofied by TKE ‘men’,"
confessed (alleged) a female UH freshman….
"The thing was I was really confused. I was like there's no way I was roofied," said another student. "We didn't do anything. We put our drinks down for five to 10 seconds. That's it. There's no way. But then I went and got drug tested and they were like, rifinol, ketamine, liquid ecstasy, [was in my system.]" …
The University says it will continue to investigate the allegations to ensure the safety of all and said it will take disciplinary action if needed.
CLUE: Rape is a felony. So is drug trafficking. So is kidnapping. Felonies should be reported to the police--not to a univ administrator.
Flashback: University Snoops in Rape Victims' Medical Files to Save Money on Litigation—Legally
read … UH students protest outside TKE house after alleged drugging incidents
Attorney: My Lawsuit cured COVID in Hawaii prisons
HNN: … Since the beginning of the pandemic, more than 2,900 inmates have gotten infected by the coronavirus. While nearly all have recovered, nine have died.
But in the last week, the state reported that in all nine of its prisons and jails, just one Big Island inmate got infected….
(Two Words: ‘Herd immunity’)
Besides nine inmates, Seitz said a handful of prison staffers also died of COVID….
read … Attorney: Lawsuit over alarming spread of COVID in Hawaii prisons prompted change
Corona Virus News: