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Monday, July 4, 2011
July 4, 2011 News Read
By Andrew Walden @ 11:32 AM :: 8041 Views

Abercrombie’s HSTA contract says nothing about 180-day law, RTTT

Four of a Kind: UPW, UHPA get big Fat Pay Raise—and HSTA suit could give one to HGEA

TEA Party to join July 4 Parades in Kailua, Makawao, Hilo, Kona

4th of July celebration as Schofield turns 40

Abercrombie signs six more bills into Law

Union leaders “frustrated” with Abercrombie, HSTA prepares to sue

Regardless of whether it is Abercrombie or the teachers union that is being obstinate, labor sources say, the governor's decision to unilaterally impose a new contract could set a precedent that, if left unchallenged, might imperil the collective bargaining rights of other public-sector unions.

"We're all frustrated," one labor leader said.

Tony Gill, a labor attorney and the chairman of Oahu Democrats, said he believes previous governors have been tempted to unilaterally impose a labor contract, describing it is as the nature of the chief executive.

M.R.C. Greenwood, the president of the University of Hawaii, attempted to impose a final offer on the University of Hawaii Professional Assembly in January 2010, but the faculty challenged the move in court — arguing, among other things, that an "evergreen clause" kept the provisions of the existing contract intact during negotiations — and the two sides quickly reached an agreement on a new contract.

Gill said a teachers union challenge to Abercrombie would be the "purest possible test" of the state's collective-bargaining law because there is no dispute that the teachers' contract has expired.

"This is the largest and most important doctrinal innovation in Hawaii labor relations law in a generation. Period," Gill said. "It's been talked about off and on in hushed tones since the early 1980s, but nobody has ever laid down the gauntlet, so to speak."

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More than Half of Lingle Appointees Won't Resign

Another three members of state boards and commissions say they have declined Gov. Neil Abercrombie's request that they resign.

That brings the total number of appointees resisting the governor to 16 out of 28. All of them were appointed by former Gov. Linda Lingle.

The latest three include Ronald Heller of the Land Use Commission, John Cole of the Public Utilities Commission and Nelson Oyadomari of the Stadium Authority who told Civil Beat Friday that they will not be stepping down. They each said that their resistance shouldn't be viewed as a challenge to the governor, but rather an effort to prevent what one termed a "major disruption" in their duties.

Read a copy of PUC commissioner John Cole's letter to the governor:  Ltr to gov.jc.2011 06-30

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AP: Annual 'Hawaii Pork Report' cites wasteful spending in Hawaii governments

Watchdog group The Grassroot Institute is criticizing what it considers wasteful spending by Hawaii governments, including a councilman's taxpayer-paid meals and marketing subsidies for Kona coffee.

The Grassroot Institute details areas where the government could save money in its annual "Hawaii Pork Report" released last week.

Grassroot Institute:

RELATED: Hawaii 2011 Pork Report points to DoE Embezzlement

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Sexual Abuse goes unpunished at Hawaii's care homes

Mark Genetiano, a certified nurse aide, remained on the job even after co-workers witnessed him over several months in 2009 pinching the breasts of severely demented women under his care, according to the documents and police reports. While nursing home workers are required to report suspicions of abuse, the workers told inspectors they were too scared of Genetiano to report him.

Only after the then-24-year-old was seen striking a resident with a hairbrush in June 2009 did Kahala Nui's administration suspend him

The sole sanction imposed by CMS last year was against Maluhia, a state-run nursing home that was under extra scrutiny at the time because it had fared poorly in previous inspections.

Maluhia was fined $4,225 for failing to supervise a male resident with a history of acting inappropriately, including touching a fellow resident's thigh, records show. Despite that history, the staff failed to supervise him properly in July 2009 while inspectors were at the facility, posing immediate jeopardy to residents' safety, regulators determined.

» Yukio Okutsu State Veterans Home (HHSC/HGEA at work) in Hilo failed to monitor the anticoagulent medication of an elderly man, who subsequently was hospitalized with a toxic level of Coumadin, an anticoagulant medicine, and irregular heart rhythms, according to a February 2010 inspection report. The man's blood-clotting rate had been tested more than a month before his hospitalization, but the nursing home didn't follow up on getting the lab results, which showed "critical abnormal lab values."

One of an elderly man's internal organs was punctured in January when a Leahi Hospital nurse replaced the man's feeding tube with one larger than what the doctor ordered, according to an April report. In her notes, the nurse reported difficulty in inserting the tube. Once the feeding began, the man became pale, clammy and restless, and started moaning. He was transported to another hospital, where he was placed in intensive care and underwent surgery. A physician told Leahi that the tube was "not in place," according to the inspection report.

» Yukio Okutsu failed to take adequate precautions after a male resident was found with his hand under a fellow resident's shorts, touching her thigh, the 2010 report said. Less than a month later, he was found with his hand on a female resident's breast, and weeks later he was discovered holding and kissing the hand of a female resident in a wheelchair.

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Gaia vs America: Eco faddists now claim Fireworks pollute ocean

Maka‘ala Ka‘aumoana, executive director, Hanalei Watershed Hui, says the time has come to start thinking (brainwashing people) about the impact that setting off fireworks over the ocean is having on the marine environment.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has extensive studies on land contamination and particulate exposure on people and wildlife from fireworks sites. Recent studies on fresh water impact are underway but less is known about ocean water.  (Ignorance is power)

The members of Hanalei Watershed Hui, however, say the people that live and work near Hanalei Bay (hippies, eco-faddists and anti-Superferry protesters) are concerned that the plastic, paper and chemical residue from fireworks are having a detrimental impact.  (Evidence shows massive sodium and chloride pollution of the world’s oceans.  Oh the inhumanity of salt!)

“Let’s think (brainwash) about the fishery and marine life and not shoot over the bay and into the water,” said Ka‘aumoana.  (Gaia demands that the Americans abandon their holy traditions and worship only her.)

Powerful firecrackers and large fireworks displays requiring permits are the greatest concern, said Ka‘aumoana, (in other words, they want to shut down gov’t sponsored fireworks shows) but so are the more common and less explosive varieties that sparkle, spin, whistle, smoke or ooze out smelly substances (and get the little guy too). Most will use some amount of powders and other pollutants that would be dangerous to sea life.  (could put sodium in the ocean)

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Battle Looms Over Huge Rare Minerals Haul off Hawaii

The discovery of around 100bn tons off the coast of Hawaii and Tahiti could spark a battle over ownership.

The minerals unearthed - gadolinium, lutetium, terbium and dysprosium - are used to make hi-tech goods, such as flat-screen televisions, LED valves and hybrid cars.

Experts have said Hawaii could stake its claim based on the locations of the bulk of the find, although Japan made the discovery.

(If these fall under the jurisdiction of Hawaii, they will never be exploited.)

BBC: The deposits are in international waters east and west of Hawaii, and east of Tahiti in French Polynesia.

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