Chinese General: Prepare for Combat with Japan
Panetta: Navy Will Invite China to Pacific Rim Exercise
BOE approves DOE plan to accredit all schools by 2019
1995: Akaka Bill Begins With Clayton Hee and Casino Gambling
Largest Jury Verdict For Hawaii Slip and Fall Case
New Lingle Ad: People Across the State Agree, Including Democrats
Legalized Gambling at Heart of New Akaka Bill
HR: Until now the bill prohibited the Akaka tribe from engaging in any form of gambling in Hawaii or anywhere else. The new version authorizes full-blown tribal casinos in Hawaii if the state ever legalizes any form of gambling, even only church bingo. Previous versions prohibited the Akaka tribe from using the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act; the new bill authorizes it.
This new bill allows the Akaka tribe, by far the largest tribe in America, to bully the genuine but much smaller mainland tribes by competing against them in two ways which previous versions of the bill prohibited.
(a) The Akaka tribe can put casinos in 48 other states (excluding Utah) even if the State of Hawaii does not allow gambling in Hawaii. Because of a Supreme Court ruling in 2009 (Carcieri vs. Salazar), new tribes (recognized after the Indian Reorganization Act of 1934) are prohibited from placing land into trust, which is the only way for a tribe to have casinos, liquor stores, gas stations, and tobacco shops exempt from local zoning or labor laws, making huge tax-exempt profits. The Akaka bill contains a "Carcieri fix" exclusively for Senator Akaka's own wannabe tribe -- a lovely golden parachute for himself and all 527,077 members of his blood brotherhood in Hawaii and everywhere else; but no such fix for the other new tribes.
read … Gambling
RTTT at Risk: As Solar Scammers Loot General Fund, DoE Faces Cutbacks
CB: Hawaii Education Superintendent Kathryn Matayoshi says Gov. Neil Abercrombie's demand to set aside 5 percent of the department's discretionary budget as a contingency plan would hurt the district.
She wants permission to exclude six programs, thereby reducing the basis for the restriction by $145 million. This would reduce the department's no-can-touch money from $12 million to about $5 million.
Matayoshi said the programs she has identified are either projecting shortfalls or are critical to the Race to the Top initiative. They include adult education, student transportation, utilities, child nutrition, systems accountability and school complex area support.
If the governor doesn't approve the request, the superintendent said some programs will have to be curtailed by much more than 5 percent because they must be maintained at current levels. The timeline for approval is unclear….
The governor told department heads last month that all general fund discretionary appropriations will be subject to a 5 percent contingency reserve restriction.
"While we will continue to monitor our state revenues through the fiscal year as more definitive information on tax revenue collections and projections becomes available, I trust that each department will make the necessary effort to operate efficiently and stay within its departmental allocation to allow the state's fiscal health to be maintained," Abercrombie said in an Aug. 30 memo.
SA: Lackluster fiscal outlook limits DOE budget choices
PDF: Hawaii DOE Appropriations FY2006-2012
read … Solar Scammers
Poll: Cayetano 47% Caldwell 45%
KHON: Kirk Caldwell reached out to supporters in an email blast stating a recent poll showed him with 45 percent of the vote for Honolulu mayor versus 47 percent for Ben Cayetano.
"Always good news is something that a campaign wants to deliver to their supporters, it gets the troops up and working harder, gets me to work harder," said Caldwell.
He took 29 percent of the vote in the primary, with Cayetano at 44 percent and Mayor Peter Carlisle 25 percent.
The campaign email said the poll shows Caldwell getting 76 percent of Carlisle's voters.
read … 47-45
Abercrombie: Tone Down the Rhetoric on PLDC
CB: On Tuesday, Abercrombie reiterated that the agency could help with projects that have broad support such as workforce housing, new schools and assisted-living facilities.
He also named a specific project — the Waikiki Natatorium, a swimming pool on the coast near Diamond Head that has been closed to the public since 1979.
"The natatorium is a good example — very good example," said the governor. "The natatorium has deteriorated steadily now for decades, and every time somebody comes up with an idea — right? — there appears to be again the idea that you have suspicions and people rush in and they shoot down those particular ideas, and then when they go away everybody leaves. And it continues to deteriorate."
"I'm going to move on the natatorium. Believe me, I'm going to move on the natatorium," he said Tuesday. "But we got to take a look at what the possibilities are but (how) it never comes to fruition. When I get an idea, we'll see how that works out."
In the meantime, Abercrombie said, he hoped that the anger that has risen over the PLDC might subside.
"What'd I'd like is, why don't we tone down the rhetoric a little?" he said. "And why don't we expand the idea that we're all in this together in our islands, right? I mentioned before about how we are in a canoe and we need to paddle together."
read … Rhetoric
‘Undesirable Element’: Pierre Omidyar Unveils Scheme to Bulldoze Hanalei site, Build “string of mansions”
KGI: One of the most significant developments proposed in Hanalei Bay since the building of the Princeville Hotel (now the St. Regis Resort), is meeting staunch opposition from a rapidly growing group of people, despite attempts from developers to assure that they are doing the right thing….
the Hanalei Bay Coalition has painted a somber picture of what could potentially become to one of Hawai‘i’s most beautiful viewplanes. According to the coalition, the ridge is at high risk of being covered with a string of high-end mansions perching over Hanalei River, similar to what has happened on the bluff overlooking Kalapaki Bay in Nawiliwili.
“People are shocked that an element like that could be encroaching in Hanalei,” coalition member Hayley Ham Young-Giorgio said. “Not to mention whatever the environmental aspects are.”
The coalition’s lobbying against the project has been so aggressive and successful that they have already gathered more than 3,400 signatures in a petition opposing the development. They ultimately want the man behind the project, billionaire and eBay founder Pierre Omidyar, to donate part of the project, the ridge overlooking Hanalei River, to conservation.
And it is conservation — and restoration — of a monumental-size historical and cultural feature that is in the developers’ plans. They say they will bring back to life a giant Hawaiian fishpond currently covered with dirt, mud and invasive species, and lined up with a 1,000-foot-long rock wall that is 600 years old.
For more information on the project, visit www.hanaleiplantation.com
Visit www.facebook.com and search “save Hanalei Ridge” more information on the opposition.
PBN: Entity owned by eBay founder Omidyar plans new resort on Kauai
read … Pierre Omidyar, Just another Greedy Developer
Billionaire Developer Pays Operatives to Register Democrats at UH
CB: “What it’s going to take to get the money out is to get people back in,” said James Koshiba, founder of the nonprofit Kanu Hawaii (funded by billionaire Civil Beat owner Pierre Omidyar), last week to a room of about two dozen volunteers. Koshiba was referring to the millions of dollars spent on influencing elections and politics every year. He said, “It’s the only antidote to politics that feels like it’s out of our hands."
“Amen!” responded 24-year-old Aislinn Coleman, prompting a chorus of laughter (by the trendy urban atheists).
According to several University of Hawaii professors, they haven't seen anything on the scale of Kanu Hawaii's project.
"Kanu Hawaii’s is definitely the most extensive outreach to increase youth voter turnout that I’ve ever seen," said Noelani Goodyear-Kaopua, an assistant professor in the university's political science department.
In May, the organization registered about 350 students over the course 10 days at University of Hawaii and Winward Community College, and canvassed in Kaneohe.
This fall, over 100 professors have requested that the organization come into their classrooms to pass out voter registration forms, and the organization plans to canvass Manoa, Waianae and Waimanalo in partnership with No Vote No Grumble.
read … Desperate gay atheists
Senate panel on UH's Wonder blunder broadens its reach
SA: Former University of Hawaii at Manoa Chancellor Virginia Hinshaw and Stan Sheriff Center manager Rich Sheriff have been added to the list of people asked to appear Monday before the state Senate Special Committee on Accountability.
In addition, committee chairwoman Sen. Donna Mercado Kim's office said a follow-up session is tentatively scheduled for Oct. 2….
Monday's meeting is scheduled for 1 p.m. in State Capitol room 211.
'Olelo Channel FOCUS 49 said it will air the hearing live and in its entirety. On-demand viewing of the hearing will be available through ‘Olelonet, the online archive at www.olelo.org.
read … Wonder Blunder
Transsexual gets 20 years, must pay for implants
SA: A career criminal with a string of convictions for passing forged checks was sentenced in state court this morning to 20 years in prison for issuing thousands of dollars worth of fake checks drawn on the Oahu Community Correctional Center’s inmate trust account.
read … A typical Story
HPD Major Wants Ankle Bracelet Removed
KHON: A Honolulu police major facing federal extortion charges is asking that his GPS monitoring device be removed from his ankle for medical reasons.
Carlton Nishimura faces federal charges of extortion, lying to investigators, witness tampering and drug possession. He is awaiting trial.
A Wednesday hearing is scheduled for his motion to modify conditions of pretrial release.
Federal Public Defender Peter Wolff's motion asks that the GPS requirement be eliminated because of a doctor's letter saying it's contributing to a condition that requires medication that has a negative effect on Nishimura's cognition. (LOL!)
read … make it easier to escape
Another HOPE Probationer Charged With Murder
HR: HOPE probationer Chad Duran received multiple chances to straighten out his life before he allegedly shot Christopher Medeiros in the head last week, court records show.
Duran repeatedly violated probation by using methamphetamine after his 2010 conviction on drug charges, according to court files. After he again tested dirty for "ice" last month, Circuit Judge Steven Alm, creator of the highly-praised HOPE program, allowed Duran to remain in HOPE, and in the community, while serving weekends in jail.
Duran, 23, is now in custody, accused of fatally shooting Medeiros last Wednesday.
read … No HOPE?
State elections panel frustrated by Hawaii County election troubles
HNN: Members of the State Elections Commission expressed frustration with troubled Hawaii County Clerk Jamae Kawauchi at their monthly meeting Tuesday as state elections officials made plans to send a key staffer back to the Big Island to help troubleshoot on Election Day….
"I mean I don't understand, she's new, she has no training, but she doesn't want to take your help?" Commissioner Zale Okazaki asked Scott Nago, the state's chief election officer who has no power to hire and fire Kawauchi, since the Hawaii County Council oversees her.
"I cannot answer that. I don't know why she's resisting, or if she is," Nago answered.
"Is she asking the right questions?" Okazaki asked Nago.
"At times yes, at times, no," said Nago. "And we try to point her in the right direction."
"We want a smooth election for the whole state. I don't necessarily believe the system is broken," Nago added. (Worried for his own job now.)
BINC: Hawaii County’s Election Woes Again Front and Center
BINC: Yellow Voter Cards To Go Out Late
read … Nago continues to play games
State House hopefuls focus on energy
WHT: House District 5 incumbent Denny Coffman said he would like to see a moratorium on new power purchase agreements and put a stop to the Public Utilities Commission approving long-term projects that do not decrease the cost of electricity or lead utilities to replace oil-based generation systems. He expressed concern about the Aina Koa Pono proposal, which would create a 20-year power purchase agreement with Hawaii Electric Light Co. and increase electricity rates while the company makes biodiesel at a Ka‘u plant. Coffman also wants geothermal production to increase and for the PUC to complete its Integrated Resources Plan, put on hold for years by an agreement with energy producers.
His challenger, Dave Bateman, reminded the audience that Hawaii residents pay about $6 billion per year for imported oil to run the generators, and Hawaii Island produces about 40 percent of its energy with renewable resources. He thinks the current electricity production from geothermal, wind and solar on the island is not good enough, and should be increased.
Bateman, a Kona coffee farmer, urged the public to take the authority back and get control over the PUC and HELCO. He also called for a true consumer advocate. Such actions could require companies to enhance their energy storage facilities, as well as increase and improve grid capacity and smart grid technology. He expressed the need for a shift in policy that allows more people to install solar panels on their homes and improvements in battery storage technology that allows those people to use more of the power they generate.
Vying to represent House District 6 are Nicole Lowen and Roy Ebert. Lowen, a former teacher, administrator and urban planner, said she would get HELCO to allow more people to connect solar systems to the grid and try to speed up the permitting process; introduce legislation that would improve the grid using the latest technology to ensure reliability; help renters and low-income families with financing of solar systems; and push for more public education about energy conservation.
Ebert, a businessman, spoke about how Texas took control of its power company and barred it from producing power, as well as opened the state to competition for retail electricity. He said the utility was allowed to keep its power lines and meters. However, independent businesses were allowed to produce power and Texans had the right to choose their own electricity provider.
He said competition is what’s going to reduce electric bills here.
The key to solving this dilemma is creating jobs, wealth and resources, according to Senate District 3 incumbent and doctor Josh Green. For him, that means more development of geothermal — a “steady energy source” that would bring down the island’s electricity prices by 10 to 15 cents per kilowatt-hour.
However, Green also stressed the importance of having an undersea interisland cable, which would be “a game-changer” because it would allow the island to export its excess energy to Oahu, the state’s largest electricity market.
His opponent, Jeff LaFrance, is a retired electrical contractor who specialized in geothermal and solar electric generation. He believes geothermal production is safe, the resource is abundant on the island and more production should be done because it would help bring down electricity costs in months, not years.
read … Energy Debate
Towering windmills a blight on the environment
SA: The experience in Hawaii and California is that broken, outmoded windmills are not removed when defunct and remain as permanent eyesores, no matter what developers say when they install them. They are just too expensive to remove and there is no financial incentive to do so.
The unnecessary and outrageous cost of this project, estimated at billions of dollars, will be borne by ratepayers and accompanied by taxpayer subsidies to corporations, supporting a plan that is not financially sound and burdens our people.
MN: Haul of turbine superloads to Ulupalakua ‘standard move’
read … Molokai Commentary
VIDEO: Geothermal incident response detailed in Puna
BIVN: Editors note: there are two versions of this story, both taking different angles. In the video featured above, we delve into the back story of Hawaii County’s plan to handle a possible geothermal related emergency in Puna. Below, you will find a detailed look at the actual procedures, detailed and shared with the public for the first time on September 15th.
HTH: Geothermal drilling bill heads to council
Just for kicks, google “geothermal evacuation”. Geothermal is in use all around the world, but only Punatics require an evacuation plan.
read … Geothermal
SA: Seek shelter in shipping containers
SA: Under a resolution passed unanimously by the Honolulu City Council last week, the city Department of Planning and Permitting is directed to draft a bill allowing up to five temporary shelters for farm workers on an agricultural lot for up to five years. Existing law limits only one dwelling on a farm lot anywhere on the island.
Livable containers, which would need to have a full bathroom and kitchen, cost $20,000-$22,000, minus the cost of a stand-alone septic disposal system, said John Rogers, owner of Affordable Portable Housing. A septic system can be about $14,000 — but with a proposed city law change to enable that cost to be spread among three or four containers, better affordability can be achieved.
Though at a fledgling stage here, this concept of reusing steel shipping containers as housing — "cargotecture" — is a niche trend in other parts of the world. Environmentally-leaning architects laud the dwellings' recyclability and durability, and it's indeed worth exploring on some scale here. SG BLOCKS, a New York-based shipping container builder, says fitting a container for housing takes just one-twentieth the amount of energy of reprocessing the same amount of steel.
read … Tom Berg’s Idea
PBS: George Ariyoshi: Journey to Washington Place
PBS: Tuesday, September 18, 7:30 pm,
Wednesday, September 19 at 11:00 pm and
Sunday, September 23 at 4:00 pm
Leslie Wilcox talks with former Governor George Ariyoshi, the state's third and longest-serving governor. According to Ariyoshi, his parents' Japanese cultural values shaped his character. Ariyoshi also recalls his long journey to becoming Hawaii's governor - from his childhood at Japanese school, all the way through meeting his future wife and his involvement in Hawaii's Democratic Revolution of 1954.
watch … Him talk about everything except how to slip pearls past TSA
Genius Honolulu: Newly Paved Road Excavated for Sewer Work
KITV: "I mean it just makes so much sense," Sharp told KITV4. "You put in the pipe, and then the road."
Sharp was left dumbstruck when Kamoku Street, just outside his apartment at Iolani Court Plaza, was completely refurbished in July, only to be dug up about a week later by a contractor working on a sewer project.
"Does the cart pull the horse, or does the horse pull the cart," said Sharp. "They should have put in this pipe when the road was still in bad condition and then repaved it."
However, the city claims there's not much that could have been done to prevent the freshly laid pavement on Kamoku Street from being torn up.
read … City claims it was unable to stop excavation of newly paved road
Former Public Housing Community Leader Fighting Eviction
CB: Fetu Kolio, the public housing resident who was earlier this year convicted of second-degree theft for stealing $1,400 from the Mayor Wright housing project, is appealing the Hawaii Public Housing Authority’s recent decision to evict him.
Kolio’s attorneys, through the Hawaii Appleseed Center for Law and Economic Justice, are arguing that the eviction decision was unwarranted.
“The Board ordered Mr. Kolio’s eviction based on a decision that was clearly erroneous, arbitrary, and capricious, an abuse of discretion and based on error of law,” reads the lawsuit.
read … Arbitrary?
ORI Demands Kickbacks for Construction Job?
CB: A Wahiawa senior center already under federal investigation may have received illegal kickbacks from a construction company, according to documents obtained by Civil Beat.
Honolulu city attorneys say they found a 2004 letter showing ORI Anuenue Hale asked for a $90,000 donation in exchange for a multi-million dollar construction contract. Although there's no way to tell from the letter whether the transaction was executed, it prompted the city to notify the U.S. Attorney's office.
City attorneys explained as much in an Aug. 20 letter to Budget Director Michael Hansen and Community Services Director Sam Moku. The attorneys described the 2004 letter from ORI President Susanna Cheung to KORL Construction in which Cheung agrees to a $5.3 million construction contract under the condition that the company would then donate $90,000 to ORI.
The possible pay-to-play deal between ORI and KORL was uncovered as part of a probe of ORI by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development that began more than a year ago. (Civil Beat broke the news of that investigation last year, and has since followed it closely, including examining 10 years of ORI documents and the Carlisle administration's decision to forgive $1.2 million in city loans to ORI.)
read … About What a Lot of Non-Profits Do
Clayton Hee Suddenly ‘Sensitive’
SA: Kahuku Plantation residents plan to protest today over what they call the insensitive handling of a human skull that has been kept in a locked, metal storage container on a construction site since its discovery in July.
"It just angers us," said Margaret Primacio, vice president of the Kahuku Plantation Residents Association, which is opposed to construction in the area. "The goal is to take care of the kupuna. Whose grandparents would want to be treated that way?"
Lex Smith, a lawyer representing property owner Continental Pacific LLC, said the company is handling the two partial pieces of human skull in accordance with directions from the State Historic Preservation Division.
But State Sen. Clayton Hee (D, Kahuku-Kaneohe) said ancient remains — or iwi kupuna — need to be particularly treated with sensitivity
read … Shakedown
Occupy Celebrates First Anniversary with a Couple of New Rapes
AP: Jackie Barcliff was arrested Friday. Police say he's is homeless. It's unclear whether he has a lawyer.
Police say the 56-year-old woman was in Manhattan this week for the Occupy demonstrations' 1-year anniversary.
Police say she recognized the 44-year-old Barcliff from other Occupy gatherings. They say he made her go to an elevated park Monday, raped her and hurled her over a second-story railing….
Police say Barcliff raped the 14-year-old girl Aug. 12, after offering her a place to stay for the night.
DC: Occupy Wall Street chief organizer unravels, ponders calling it quits
Read … About the Movement that will be at the center of Democrat resistance after Romney is elected
Soldier from Kosrae Micronesia Killed by Muslims in Afghanistan
PDN: A soldier from Kosrae was killed in Afghanistan, although the military has released no details about the death.
Army Spc. Sapuro B. Nena was identified by the Guam governor's office, which issued a message of mourning yesterday.
"Christine and I, Ray and Notch, offer our deepest and most heartfelt condolences to the family of Army Spc. Sapuro B. Nena," Gov. Eddie Calvo said in a statement. "Our prayers are with them during this difficult time."
As of yesterday, the Federated States of Micronesia embassy in Washington, D.C., was trying to confirm details about the soldier's death, said Raleigh Welly, an embassy official.
SA: Hawaii soldier among 4 killed in insider attack
read … Kosrae