by Andrew Walden
Legislators won't find funding for OHA's "Governance 'Aha" in the official Office of Hawaiian Affairs budget proposal (HB209), but OHA is allocating $2.3 million dollars for "the unofficial request of the future consortium for an operating budget."
The details are in a January 9, 2015 OHA "Interoffice Memorandum" leaked to Hawai'i Free Press. In it OHA CEO Kamanao Crabbe presents OHA Trustees Chair Robert Lindsey and OHA Chief of Staff Harold Nedd a table outlining the "Report of Uses and Available Budget for OHA's Governance Planning Operating Budget" which he claims is "a follow-up to discussions that occurred during your Board of Trustees Meeting on Thursday, January 8, 2015." Crabbe asserts that the table "was provided in Action Item ARM #14-07 approved by your Board on October 16, 2014."
In total, Crabbe's memo budgets $2,598,546 for "Consortium" and another $407,332 for the Native Hawaiian Roll Commission. None of this is mentioned in HB209.
Crabbe was asked directly "What is the status of nation building" by Rep Gene Ward at the January 6 budget hearing before a joint meeting of the Senate Ways and Means Committee and the House Finance committee. His response:
This Thursday (Jan 8) we have a presentation with an ali'i-led consortium of benevolent societies and one native Hawaiian trust. OHA is looking to their leadership....
Who is the "future consortium" making the "unofficial request" for which OHA administration has already approved $2.3M?
Eight days after the memo was written, a news release announced:
...the Board of Directors of the Association of Hawaiian Civic Clubs (AHCC) voted to approve a nation-building partnership with the Sovereign Councils of the Hawaiian Home Lands Assembly (SCHHA) and the Council for Native Hawaiian Advancement (CNHA). The partners plan to start with educating communities on constitutions in advance of a delegate election and constitutional convention....
Immediately following the approval of the motion to enter into a formal partnership with SCHHA and CNHA, the Board of Directors of the AHCC also agreed to fund an apportionment study by Mr. Dwight Hanohano of Relevant Data, for the purpose of creating appropriate voting districts, from which the delegate count can be determined and the election can be conducted. Indeed, this is a significant first step towards building our Native Hawaiian Government," added Annelle Amaral, President of the AHCC.
The CNHA and SCHHA are fronts for the Danner sisters, fresh off an unsuccessful effort to grab control of Hawaiian Homelands. As for the Hawaiian Civic Clubs, FreeHawaii points out: "This is an outrage for for two reasons - First, no one in the Hawaiian Civic Club membership was consulted ahead of time. Second, during the recent AHCC convention, a resolution was passed by Hawaiian Civic Club delegates from the convention floor recognizing the Hawaiian Kingdom as still existing."
OHA Board of Trustees minutes are not available beyond Sept 18, 2014, so it is impossible to verify what may or may not have been presented to the Trustees October 16, but the minutes for the June 4, 2014 OHA Trustees Committee on Asset and Resource Management (ARM), include Crabbe outlining a three-phase contract to conduct "the election of delegates", the "Governance 'Aha" and "Contract for referendum."
At the June 4 meeting, Crabbe describes what he calls, "the ideal leadership of nation building":
...a consortium of Hawaiian institutions and organizations such as the ali'i trusts, royal benevolent societies, such as the Royal Order, Hale o na Ali'i, Ka'ahumanu Society, Department of Hawaiian Home Lands, Association of Hawaiian Civic Clubs, and OHA's role would only be a facilitator.
So far the Royal Order has expressed interest in being part of this consortium, Queen Ka'ahumanu, we are waiting on Hale o na Ali'i, Queen Emma Foundation has agreed to participate, so has Lunalilo Trust, tomorrow I have a meeting with the Chair from Queen Lili'uokalani Trust, Tommy Kaulukukui, and Friday with Jack Wong from Kamehameha Schools, Department of Hawaiian Home Lands also has agreed to participate and so has the Association of Hawaiian Civic Clubs....
Seven months later it appears that only the CNHA, SCCHA, and Civic Clubs signed up to organize the fake Indian tribe for OHA.
In response to Crabbe's June 4 proposal, Trustee Rowena Akana pointed out:
We've had experiences with turning over things to LLCs, we've had the recent experience of the sign up, we had to put in more money because these people spent a lot more than we had allocated, and so I caution the board about just giving the money, putting in an LLC and stepping back, because we won't know how the money is being spent. If these people have no experience in putting these things together, a lot of money can disappear. This is trust money now. I caution you on this because we've had many experiences of such actions, and I'm telling you I'm very weary of that....
Trustee Hulu Lindsey said from the experience we had with Kana'iolowalu, our staff would probably be cutting the checks but maybe in this case we can have a more detailed budget so that we can follow the expenditures? ... because we did have very large contracts with Kana'iolowalu where we couldn't keep track of where the money was going....
Crabbe had some excellent news:
... the ad hoc committee did approach ali'i trusts and other Hawaiian organizations for not only their participation and support but also for their consideration to support financially. However, we did not get any support from them, yes moral support, but not any financial.... Unfortunately we are the institution remaining standing to see this move forward....