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Former council members expect to be witnesses against indicted ex-city officials
HNN: … Former Honolulu City Council members say they’re not surprised that prosecutors indicted three ex-city executives for their roles in the payoff of the ex-police chief in 2017.
“It was just a matter of when this was going to happen,” said Ann Kobayashi.
Kobayashi and the eight others on the council in 2017 were all subpoenaed last year and testified before the federal grand jury that indicted Roy Amemiya, the city’s former managing director; Donna Leong, former corporation counsel; and Max Sword, who was chair of the Honolulu Police Commission.
It’s alleged that the group funneled the money quickly, skirting the City Council.
“Given the fact that the case went before the grand jury I knew it was a serious matter and the federal govt believed that there was strong indication of wrong doing,” said Ron Menor….
In council meetings, Sword evaded questions from the members who wanted input.
“I was asked by the grand jury what the council’s role was in awarding the severance package, settlement monies,” said Ikaika Anderson.
“I had to say that the council was told by corporation counsel that we had no role.”
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read … Former council members expect to be witnesses against indicted ex-city officials
Lawmakers: Red Hill Fuel Leaked Into Well Through A Pipeline Navy Didn’t Know Existed
CB: … Navy officials didn’t know about the pipeline until someone reviewed the facility’s schematics from 1941, lawmakers who took a tour said they were told….
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read … Lawmakers: Red Hill Fuel Leaked Into Well Through A Pipeline Navy Didn’t Know Existed
DOE Officials Preview Budget Priorities To Hawaii Lawmakers
CB: … State education officials stressed the importance of catching kids up academically and bolstering student support services amid the pandemic as they tried to make the case to lawmakers Thursday for a $270 million budget ask for next fiscal year, which begins July 1….
Gov. David Ige’s supplemental budget proposes restoring $100.2 million to the DOE base budget — funds that were cut last year due to revenue shortfalls — and adding $32.5 million to cover teacher salary differentials that were sustained this fiscal year by federal Covid aid.,…
The DOE, which counts 22,000 full-time employees, and serves roughly 159,500 students, has a remaining balance of approximately $504 million in federal funds from the first round of aid via the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act up to the latest round from the American Rescue Plan Act.
Hallett told lawmakers that the initial $43 million in CARES Act money was dedicated largely to bolstering health and safety measures in schools and supporting special education. The second round of $183 million in federal aid helped offset general fund budget cuts while ARPA funds will largely be devoted to helping accelerate learning and students’ social emotional needs after nearly a year and a half of distance or hybrid learning.
DOE officials also said they were looking into establishing a permanent statewide distance learning program that would extend beyond core classes and include extracurricular classes, hosted in a space that could virtually serve students across all islands….
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read … DOE Officials Preview Budget Priorities To Hawaii Lawmakers
Honolulu Police Chief Search Expected To Take At Least 6 More Months
CB: … PSI Services LLC, the consulting firm hired to assist in the search, said it plans to present the police commission with up to four finalists in June….
read … Honolulu Police Chief Search Expected To Take At Least 6 More Months
Annual Statewide Count Of Hawaii’s Homeless Population Postponed
CB: … The count for unsheltered and sheltered individuals was rescheduled for March 10….
SA: Oahu’s unsheltered homeless Point-in-Time Count postponed due to rise in COVID-19 cases
read … Annual Statewide Count Of Hawaii’s Homeless Population Postponed
Will This Bureaucratic Tug Of War Over Hawaii’s Ag Lands Finally End?
CB: … Ranchers are fed up with two decades of waiting for the departments of Agriculture and Land and Natural Resources to sort out legally mandated land transfers….
read … Will This Bureaucratic Tug Of War Over Hawaii’s Ag Lands Finally End?
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