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Wednesday, June 1, 2022
June 1, 2022 News Read
By Andrew Walden @ 7:03 PM :: 3298 Views

Where people in Hawaii are moving to most

DBEDT Projects Hawaii economic growth unchanged at 3.2 percent

Bus Fares Going Up

One less Jones Act tanker for Hawaii is signal to lift U.S.-build requirement

Special Treatment? Chief’s Son Attacked Man at Whole Foods Market With Large Metal Hook, Razor Blade--HPD Charges as Misdemeanor

SA: … Logan, who currently works in the Investigations Division of the state De­partment of the Attorney General, did not tell the commission or its consultant that his 36-year-old son had more than 40 prior arrests and citations and was pending trial on a felony theft case.

Zane Michael Batalona Logan was arrested May 24 for felony assault the day after Joe Logan was picked to be chief of the Honolulu Police Department.

He was then charged with misdemeanor assault after he allegedly attacked a 33-year-old man on the lanai of the Whole Foods on Kamakee Street before chasing him into the street in front of the sand volleyball area at Ala Moana Regional Park over a dispute about Logan’s girlfriend. According to state court documents, Logan does not have a local address and allegedly “kicked, punched, and attacked him (the 33-year-old) with a metal hook-like weapon, causing pain.” The weapon was a foot-long red-and-black Craftsman hook tool with a metal tip.

A witness told a responding officer that (notapimp) Logan accused the 33-year-old man he allegedly assaulted of sexually assaulting (not paying) his ...uh... ‘girlfriend’, Leann “Jewels” Brandt, 41, and told the man he would kill him. Brandt was arrested with Logan after she allegedly held a razor blade to the 33-year-old’s neck and threatened to kill him while Logan allegedly pinned him to the ground.

Witnesses told police Brandt allegedly gave the Craftsman hook to Logan, according to court documents. Brandt was charged with felony terroristic threatening. The 33-year-old suffered minor cuts to the bridge of his nose and the right side of his face and a “bloody wound to the back of his head,” according to police reports included in state court documents.

The state Office of the Public Defender asked the court to appoint a private attorney to Logan because it previously represented the complaining 33-year-old witness in a separate matter, according to state court documents.

A Honolulu police lieutenant signed off on downgrading the charge from a felony to a misdemeanor, and prosecutors agreed….

(CLUE: This is special treatment.)

Background: TRO Against New Police Chief’s son places him in UH Professor's spare bedroom

ECourtKokua: Brandt convicted of shoplifting $250 value from Urban Outfitters 1DCW-21-0002740

read … Commission stands by selection of Maj. Gen. Arthur ‘Joe’ Logan as Honolulu’s police chief

Criminal Coordination? Memo links Cayetano to PAC ‘smear campaign’

HNN: … “There is strong evidence that the Cayetano campaign is illegally coordinating with the Victory Calls PAC to run a ‘smear campaign’ against Lt. Gov. Green, a violation of campaign spending law which must not be allowed to corrupt our elections,” said Chris West, president of the ILWU Local 142….

The first in the series of ads ran this month on local television stations with local comedy duo Da Braddahs attacking Green’s credentials as a board certified physician.

The second ad ran in the Sunday newspaper, accusing Green of violating the state ethics code.

In his complaint, West said he recently obtained a copy of a Cayetano campaign opposition research memo where political consultants urged the campaign to attack Green as not being board certified.

He cited that memo as evidence that the ads by the Victory Calls PAC attacking Green’s board certification status were coordinated with the Cayetano campaign….

Another union, the IBEW Local 1186, recently cut ties with the comedy team in the television ads. It said it had regularly booked Da Braddahs at union picnics but was dropping them because of the ads critical of Green, who they support.

If the commission finds that the ads were coordinated with the campaign, it could fine the PAC $1,000 per violation — or shut it down.

But if it finds that the coordination was intentional and reckless, it could refer the matter the law enforcement agencies for a criminal investigation….

“I do think that this complaint does show some evidence, you know, more than I’ve seen in the past ... that there perhaps could have been coordination,” Moore said…. 

CB: Super PAC Targets Josh Green As Hawaii Governor’s Race Heats Up

read …  Union leader accuses gubernatorial candidate Cayetano, PAC of ‘smear campaign’

Oahu homeowners to pay significantly more in property taxes as home values rise

KHON: … The Honolulu City Council, with a budget of more than $3 billion, is scheduled to vote tomorrow on setting the property rates for residential, hotel, commercial and other classifications.

Since lowering the rate is out of the question, Waters said he's introduced two bills to increase the homeowners' exemption from $100,000 to $120,000, and also the exemption for kupuna from $140,000 to $160,000.

The council is also considering giving homeowners renting out properties long term similar exemptions as if they lived there.

They are also debating capping what homeowners pay in property taxes at 3% of income, but only if you make 80% of the area medium income or below -- that's $73,000 for a single person or $104,000 for a family of four….

CB: Would You Want The Government To Be Your Landlord? 

HB: ADUs Seemed Like a Simple Solution to Hawai‘i’s Housing Crisis

SA: Hawaii tax collections soared to a record high in April while the local economy recovered

read … Oahu homeowners to pay significantly more in property taxes as home values rise

Hu Honua’s High Cost--40.64 cents per kwh

IM: …“HELCO estimates that the revenue requirements for the Project (to be collected from customers) will exceed $1.2 billion over the 30-year term of the PPA. HELCO further estimates that the Project will provide approximately 2,979,000,000 kWh of electricity. Thus, the total revenue requirement for the Project is equivalent to approximately 40.64 cents per kWh over the Project’s lifetime.”

“As a result, the Project is expected to contribute to significantly higher customer bills over the 30-year PPA term.”… 

IM: Hu Honua files Motion for Reconsideration re PUC Rejection of Tree-Burning Contract

IM: A Few Unions Protested PUC`s Hu Honua Decision

SA Column: Veto the costly, dirty Senate energy bill

read … PUC Analyzed Hu Honua`s High Cost and Greenhouse Gas Analysis

Thanks to DLNR, Homeless Take Over Hilo Hotel

HNN: … Uncle Billy’s Hotel was badly damaged by a fire earlier this year that’s believed to have been started by squatters.

It’s one of many ongoing problems with the vacant property.

“The weeds are growing over to the Naniloa right now, and the weeds or fires, crime and everything that’s happening, and everyone just doesn’t understand that the Naniloa is suffering because of that,” said developer Ed Bushor, CEO of Tower Development.

“(At) Merrie Monarch, we had to have extra security guards keep the homeless from coming into the Merrie Monarch festivities.”….

“Banyon Drive is suffering right now. We have crime, fires, homeless. Every day we have crime in front of the Naniloa,” Bushor said….

HTH: BLNR mulls Naniloa request to use second mortgage

read … Amid concerns about squatters, future of dilapidated Hilo hotel still in limbo

State DoT to get Another $1.2B to Waste

CB: … projects in Hawaii that could get a boost thanks to the $1.2 trillion bipartisan Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act that passed last fall.

Hawaii is expected to receive about $2.5 billion from that act spread out over the next five years. The largest share, about $1.2 billion, will go to improvements on state highways.

Much of that highway money will go toward funding a long list of improvement projects that already have been approved by the federal government and the state Department of Transportation Highways Division….

2014: Hawaii $90K 'Administrative Cost' Per Mile of State Roads

2015: While Pushing Rail, State Fails to Use $820M in Federal Highway Funds 

2016: Sitting on Unspent $540M, State DoT to Shut Down New Road Building in Gambit for Massive Tax Hike

read … How Federal Funds Could Help Fix Hawaii’s Roads And Bridges

Construction moves forward at state’s correctional centers

KHON: … The Department of Public Safety reported improvement to both the Women’s Community Correctional Center in Kailua on Oahu, and the Hawaii Community Correctional Center in Hilo on the Big Island are continuing.

At the Women’s Community Correctional Center, there will be new housing, administration building, and visitation building….

A new housing unit has been under construction for the Hawaii Community Correctional Center in Hilo….

read … Construction moves forward at state’s correctional centers

Wahiawa charter school under investigation after receiving multiple parent complaints

HNN: … Parents like Kelly Olayan said the school is reneging on a promise to let the students keep distance-learning technology devices.

“They’re holding my kids hostage,” said Olayan. “And I’m not able to further educate them until they release them, basically.”

Olayan said if she doesn’t get her kids’ records from Kamalani Academy before next week, they’ll lose their spots at an unrelated summer school.

She added that the school wants back the laptops provided to students through an agreement with its virtual learning vendor, Harmony Educational Services.

Records shared in a parent’s testimony to the State Public Charter School Commission (SPCSC) show parents got conflicting messages.

The vendor said the computers were theirs to keep, but a school email said they must be returned.

About halfway through the school year, SPCSC found Kamalani did not have the authority to contract with the virtual learning vendor so the school lost an opportunity to receive $1.4 million in state funding….

read … Wahiawa charter school under investigation after receiving multiple parent complaints

Two Years Later Maui County Has Nothing to Show for Phony Bank of America Lawsuit

CB: … Almost two years after Maui County hired an outside attorney for $200,000 to pursue a lawsuit against Bank of America for allegedly failing to uphold a decades-old promise to provide $150 million in home loans to Native Hawaiians, it’s still unclear when — or if — the county plans to take action against the banking giant….

(CLUE: This is a phony issue being exploited by politicians for votes.)

Throughout the course of an almost three-hour long discussion, a handful of members of the public raised concerns about why there hadn’t been more progress over the last two years, and why county attorneys hadn’t done more to work with the group of Native Hawaiians who’ve been leading the fight to hold the bank accountable for the last three decades….

… Bank of America pledged in 1994 to make $150 million available to Native Hawaiian borrowers within the next four years. But the bank ended up leaving the state three years later, after lending only $3 million to Hawaiian homesteaders.

(CLUE: There is a difference between making loans available and actually writing loans.)

In a statement Tuesday, a Bank of America spokesman said that while “we respect the issues faced by the Native Hawaiian community, the bank fulfilled its pledge made in 1994 and this was confirmed by the state in 2007.”…. 

MN: Suit filed against Bank of America (again)

L360: Bank of America is being accused of discrimination by Hawaiian nonprofit corporation Nā Po'e Kōkua

read … Maui Council Questions Lack Of Progress In Bank Of America Legal Battle

China falls short on big Pacific deal but finds smaller wins

AP: … China fell short Monday on a bold plan to have 10 Pacific nations endorse a sweeping new agreement covering everything from security to fisheries as some in the region expressed deep concerns.

But there have been plenty of smaller wins for China’s Foreign Minister Wang Yi as he continues an island-hopping tour of the region.

Wang was in Fiji to co-host a key meeting with the foreign ministers from the 10 island nations.

At an unusual news conference afterward, Wang and Fijian Prime Minister Frank Bainimarama spoke for about 30 minutes and then abruptly left the stage as reporters tried to shout out questions. That left many details of what transpired at the meeting undisclosed.

But it was clear the nations hadn’t endorsed China’s plan….

SDT: Democracies Send Message to China with Giant RIMPAC Exercise off Southern California

NYT: Why China Is Miles Ahead in a Pacific Race for Influence

read … China falls short on big Pacific deal but finds smaller wins 

Hawaii Health Department reports 6 new coronavirus-related deaths, 8,124 new infections

SA: … The Hawaii Department of Health today reported 8,124 new COVID-19 infections over the previous week, bringing the total since the start of the pandemic to 282,619 cases.

DOH also reported six more deaths, bringing the state’s COVID death toll to 1,457.

The state’s 7-day average of new cases today was reported at 1,210, compared to 1,098 on May 25, representing the 10th consecutive weekly increase.

The state’s average positivity rate, meanwhile, increased to 18.4% from 18.3% last week.

DOH has recorded consecutive positivity rate increases for more than two months. In Honolulu County, the average positivity rate is now at 20.5%, up from 20.1% last week.

By island, there were 5,912 new infections reported on Oahu, 966 on Hawaii island, 624 on Maui, 503 on Kauai, 17 on Molokai and seven on Lanai. Another 95 infections were reported out of state.

The data from today may have been impacted by fewer people testing on Memorial Day on Monday…

DOH Director Dr. Libby Char has said the average daily case counts are likely five to six times higher than reported, given that results from home test kits are not officially tallied.

The Healthcare Association of Hawaii counted 182 patients with COVID in hospitals on Monday, up from 151 last Wednesday.

The U.S. Health and Human Services hospital utilization dashboard lists 212 patients with COVID-19 at 24 hospitals in Hawaii today…. 

read … Hawaii Health Department reports 6 new coronavirus-related deaths, 8,124 new infections

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