Hawaii budget gap widens by $90M as revenue forecast sinks lower
Gov. Linda Lingle will have to find another $90 million to close the state's budget gap before the fiscal year ends in June, after the state Council on Revenues yesterday again lowered its revenue forecast.
RELATED: Governor Lingle: "balance budget without raising taxes or laying off"
Maui: $800,000 fine for "erotic fun" Vacation Rental, home to "World Peace Association"
When the case first began less than three years ago, the School of Tantra Web site said, "Enjoy seven days of exotic erotic fun in paradise!" Lovell said. "So we said, 'Aha, this is still a violation of short-term rentals, once we say that they advertised to provide accommodations there." ... Now, they only offer the occasional classes, which often have sexual themes, or "therapy" sessions in rented community rooms or maybe while taking a hike ....
RELATED (all sites list the same Wailuku, Maui address): http://www.lemuriancenter.com/ , http://www.schooloftantra.net/lemuriancenter/Massage/masseurs.htm , http://www.worldpolyamoryassociation.org/News/APolyLifeMonogamyWithMorePartners.html , http://www.worldpeaceassociation.com/
World Peace Association website: "Together we create a civilized civilization, free of war, violence, death, destruction, disease, pestilence, pollution and all acts that hurt or harm others and our beloved planet. We envision a world where all consciousness is respected however it manifests in all species. Together we find viable solutions for all problems that plague society. We're smart enough, wise enough, mature enough to accomplish this now, in this generation, in our time. We're free of the need to act out conflicts in harmful ways, ways that hurt us, our families, our countries, our beloved world. It's time to stop, put aside our childhood toys of armies, war and violence and pick up the instruments and symbols of planetary peace. It's time to take our neighbor's hand, look in their eyes, smile and see the loving oneness that flows between us. Love is our natural state. Let's be who we are. We are love."
World Polyamory Association website: "John and Sue have an offbeat marital arrangement. For the last five years of their marriage, Sue has spent three nights a week with her boyfriend, Fred. And that's not even the strange part....As it turns out, John openly shares Sue -- and their king-size marital bed -- with Fred. Confused? Consider this: During the rest of the week, Fred sleeps at home with his wife, Peggy, and their male lover, Bill."
(Just some more completely typical and average 'peace' activists....)
Hawaiian Telcom wins extension for turnaround plan
The company filed a Chapter 11 petition on Dec. 1, listing assets of $1.35 billion. It (local management including the oldest of the old boys) blamed the bankruptcy partly on transition difficulties after Carlyle, a Washington-based private-equity firm, bought Hawaiian Telcom from Verizon Communications Inc. in 2005 for $1.6 billion. (And Carlysle said, "We won't be doing any more deals with these clowns!)
Pearl Harbor destroyer on "escort" duty near China
A defense official says the Pearl Harbor-based destroyer “Chung-Hoon” is keeping a close eye on the unarmed sub-hunting ship “Impeccable” as it continues operations in the South China Sea. (Symbolism: Ship named after a free Chinese-Hawaiian American WW2 Hero sent to explain the relationship of forces to the Chinese Communists.)
RELATED: http://www.chung-hoon.navy.mil/default.aspx , http://www.billykrsigsbee502.com/ , http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/USS_Sigsbee_(DD-502)
Rear Admiral Gordon Pai`ea Chung-Hoon: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gordon_Pai'ea_Chung-Hoon
Soldiers return confident that Iraq is on the right track
American military forces should be able to live up to the terms of a security agreement that requires them to pull out of Iraqi cities to their bases by June 30, a 25th Infantry Division brigade commander said yesterday. Col. Todd McCaffrey, commander of the division's 2nd Stryker Brigade Combat Team, said he agrees with the Army's top leadership that President Barack Obama is on "the right track" with his troop withdrawal plan by August 2010. (Note how only three words are an actual quote?)
"When we left, things were on track for a sustainable security," said McCaffrey, whose unit may have been the last to be subjected to 15-month combat tours.
(Star-Bulletin spinning Bush's success as if it were Obama's. Which causes us to recall a line from George Orwell's "1984": "Four legs good, two legs better!")
Monsanto cuts all jobs on Kauai
Work done by the 30-person team on Kaua'i will be reallocated to existing Monsanto operations on Maui and O'ahu "for improved efficiency and cost-savings," Monsanto Hawai'i spokesman Paul Koehler said.
The Kaua'i workers can apply for jobs on other islands, or receive a severance package, he said.
The St. Louis-based agricultural company employs about 800 people in Hawai'i and expects to continue expanding its operations on Maui, O'ahu and Moloka'i, Koehler said.
Most of Monsanto's work in Hawai'i is to produce seed corn for the Mainland U.S. market, Koehler said. About three-quarters of the Monsanto corn grown here is genetically engineered, he said.
"We are extremely concerned about the pollution left behind. Very few studies have been done on how to mitigate contamination of soil and bacteria where genetically engineered crops have been grown," said (anti-Superferry Activist) Jeri Di Pietro, of the group GMO-Free Kaua'i. (That's because growing GM crops does not cause ANY "contamination.")
SB editorial comes up with sly new argument for Trial Lawyers over Doctors
AFTER struggling for years over the question of whether to cap medical malpractice awards, state legislators are considering the same maneuver they used to obtain huge salary increases for themselves. (Sly bait for foolish readers) A bill passed by the House would create a commission to decide on a cap for noneconomic damages, letting legislators off the hook. (And making it difficult for trial lawyers to determine who should be denied campaign contributions.) The bill should be rejected.
Hawaii already has a $375,000 cap on awards for physical pain and suffering, but plaintiffs' lawyers instead ask juries to award larger sums as compensation for mental anguish, disfigurement and loss of enjoyment of life. The strategy has been successful. (Based on the following statistical con game)
In past years, proponents of tort reform have said a cap is needed to control rising insurance premiums and halt the departure of doctors from Hawaii to the mainland. However, state records show that the number of licensed physicians in Hawaii has risen yearly from 3,044 in 2000 to nearly 4,000 this year, (How many are mainland retirees not practicing? Military doctors since transferred?) and the numbers have increased in each county, according to Robert Toyofuku, (now you know who wrote this) representing trial lawyers in testimony to the Legislature.
State mental health division has no funds for Democrat's mental health non-profit
The state Adult Mental Health Division has told groups under contract to provide adult services that it has run out of money. DEMOCRAT Brian Schatz of Helping Hands Hawaii and some lawmakers suggest using federal stimulus money for Medicaid to cover the mental health shortfall....
"The reduction in hours was difficult to adjust to, but not paying providers at all is not going to work for us," said Brian Schatz, chief executive officer of Helping Hands Hawaii, which has about 800 clients in different programs. Some nonprofit agencies possibly could obtain credit or private financing to sustain their programs, but for them "to loan the government money over the next several months is unacceptable," Schatz added.
Emperor, empress of Japan to visit Hawaii (no Pearl Harbor visit) July 14-16
Emperor Akihito and Empress Michiko will be stopping in Honolulu on July 14 following a visit to Canada. The couple will remain in Honolulu on July 15 and visit to the Big Island on July 16. Details of the visit have not been finalized, but Kido said the couple probably will not visit Pearl Harbor, as had been rumored. "So far, in the original plan, Pearl Harbor is not included," Kido said.
Huge Kapolei mall project on track despite Hawaii's economy
The city's multi-billion rail transit project is expect to travel north of the complex.... Nellis said, "we definitely have designed the project to integrate a transit stop."
UH-Manoa does its share
UHERO estimates UH-Manoa generated nearly $1.3 billion in spending in 2007, representing 1.9 percent of state's total economic output of $101 billion and 2.3 percent of the Hawaii's estimated gross domestic product. (But generates no profit from athletic events.)
Hawaii hotels only 66% full in January
As the number of visitors has declined, he said many hotels opted for "added value" of free room nights, free food and beverage, and free or discounted spa services rather than widespread reductions in rates. But now hotels are cutting rates as well, Toy said. "What's been happening is we've had this very deep and very quick drop off in the market."
Bloggers (temporarily) blackballed in Hawaii County
KONA BLOG: "I finally had my formal request for the recinded directive that blackballed me, Damon Tucker, and David Corrigan fulfilled via e-mail today.I’ve posted this infamous directive here,here,and here."