Tuesday, March 28, 2023
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Monday, March 27, 2023
Update Hawaii licensing laws to attract more doctors
By Keli'i Akina PhD @ 12:05 AM :: 221 Views :: Health Care, Cost of Living

... medical professionals have found Hawaii to be an increasingly uninviting place to practice ....

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Saturday, March 25, 2023
HTA by any other name is still HTA
By Keli'i Akina PhD @ 5:57 PM :: 375 Views :: Tourism

... SB1522 would replace the HTA with a new “Office of Destination Management.” ....

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Saturday, March 18, 2023
The honeymoon is over; what about our tax cuts?
By Keli'i Akina PhD @ 6:25 PM :: 789 Views :: Taxes

... Wednesday was Gov. Josh Green’s 100th day in office, and I think it’s safe to say his honeymoon period with voters and the Legislature has come to an end ....

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Wednesday, March 15, 2023
Promoting Local Foods in Hawaii; Removing Barriers is Key to Growth
By Keli'i Akina PhD @ 4:08 AM :: 720 Views :: Agriculture, Small Business

... The state has used numerous strategies to achieve that goal, but with mixed success ....

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Sunday, March 12, 2023
Five Ideas to Put Aloha Stadium Plan on Right Track
By Keli'i Akina PhD @ 12:05 AM :: 886 Views :: Development

... avoid becoming another boondoggle ....

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Monday, March 6, 2023
‘Visitor impact’ fee inherently flawed
By Keli'i Akina PhD @ 4:32 AM :: 1162 Views :: Taxes, Tourism

... your cousins will have to pay hundreds of dollars to go to the family barbecue at Ala Moana Beach Park ....

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Wednesday, March 1, 2023
Hawai‘i Would Not be the Same Without Hawaiians
By Keli'i Akina PhD @ 6:50 PM :: 1127 Views :: OHA, Cost of Living

... more Hawaiians are moving out of Hawaiʻi every year ....

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Wednesday, March 1, 2023
Hawaii’s Housing Shortage Explained
By Keli'i Akina PhD @ 1:08 PM :: 1527 Views :: Development, Land Use, Cost of Living

... Housing expert says Hawaii fits pattern of areas losing residents ....

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Monday, February 27, 2023
Priced out of paradise
By Keli'i Akina PhD @ 6:27 PM :: 3536 Views :: Cost of Living

... Now living in Seattle, Tongi was asked by judge Lionel Richie, “Why on Earth would you leave Hawaii?” ....

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Wednesday, February 22, 2023
Corruption or incompetence, transparency still the antidote
By Keli'i Akina PhD @ 4:51 PM :: 1147 Views :: Ethics

... to combat government corruption, waste, mismanagement and inefficiency ....

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Sunday, February 12, 2023
Multiple tax hikes moving through the Legislature
By Keli'i Akina PhD @ 9:09 PM :: 2114 Views :: Taxes

... there are still tax hikes moving through the Legislature, threatening to further increase Hawaii’s already-astronomical cost of living ....

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Thursday, February 2, 2023
Federal Recognition of Hawaiian Sovereignty: One People, Many Views
By Keli'i Akina PhD @ 8:26 PM :: 1039 Views :: Akaka Bill, DHHL, OHA

... On Oct. 19, 2022, the United States Department of the Interior (DOI) announced that it would host its first-ever consultation policy with the Native Hawaiian community. ...

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Thursday, February 2, 2023
Proposed Short Term Rental Regs Could Harm Big Island Farmers, Economy.
By Keli'i Akina PhD @ 3:19 PM :: 846 Views :: Hawaii County , Agriculture, Small Business, Tourism

... Some members of the Hawaii County Council are proposing tighter regulations on hosted short-term rentals ....

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Sunday, January 29, 2023
Don't let emergency orders become the norm
By Keli'i Akina PhD @ 7:33 PM :: 447 Views :: Hawaii State Government, Homelessness

... bureaucracy and red tape have become a major barrier to affordable housing in Hawaii ....

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Sunday, January 29, 2023
High cost of living drives family, friends out of Hawaii
By Keli'i Akina PhD @ 7:20 PM :: 1018 Views :: Hawaii Statistics, Cost of Living

... More than 15,000 people left Hawaii for the mainland last year ....

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Tuesday, January 24, 2023
Could this be a good year at the Hawaii Legislature?
By Keli'i Akina PhD @ 10:54 PM :: 808 Views :: Development, Hawaii State Government, Land Use, Small Business, Cost of Living

... we have high hopes for a few ideas that could make a real difference for our state ....

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Tuesday, January 24, 2023
Green's State of the State: What's to like? 
By Keli'i Akina PhD @ 1:38 AM :: 819 Views :: Hawaii State Government, Taxes

... Most compelling was the governor's proposal to increase tax deductions and support open records, but all the talk about spending was worrisome ....

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Thursday, January 19, 2023
Let the sun shine in
By Keli'i Akina PhD @ 2:33 AM :: 667 Views :: Ethics, Hawaii State Government

... The only question is whether they have the political will ....

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Sunday, January 15, 2023
​How to avert the looming property tax crisis
By Keli'i Akina PhD @ 10:10 PM :: 1054 Views :: Hawaii Statistics, Taxes, Cost of Living

... Hawaii’s population has been declining for six straight years, and if policymakers don’t do something quickly to avert the looming increase in county property taxes, that is likely to continue ....

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Sunday, January 8, 2023
Akina recaps victories, disappointments of 2022; is optimistic about 2023
By Keli'i Akina PhD @ 7:31 PM :: 959 Views :: Hawaii State Government, Jones Act, Taxes, Cost of Living

... Grassroot Institute of Hawaii’s “wins” over the past year ....

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Wednesday, January 4, 2023
Please Cut Taxes in 2023
By Keli'i Akina PhD @ 7:18 PM :: 875 Views :: Taxes

... Gov. Josh Green made eliminating the general excise tax for food and medicine one of his major talking points. And on the county level, faced with concerns about skyrocketing real estate assessments, Mayor Rick Blangiardi promised to “aggressively” pursue ways to reduce that tax burden. ....

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Sunday, January 1, 2023
“Deep Moral Crisis” in Hawai‘i Government
By Keli'i Akina PhD @ 6:33 PM :: 1425 Views :: Ethics

... bold proposals for legislative reform ....

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Tuesday, December 20, 2022
Artificial Shortage: 74% of Oahu Land is Vacant
By Keli'i Akina PhD @ 7:08 PM :: 1243 Views :: Development, Hawaii Statistics, Land Use

... Since the state Land Use Commission was created in 1976, “there’s just been a massive falloff on development,” Akina said. Indeed, only 2% of Hawaii island’s land is committed to urban housing and development. Statewide, that percentage is 4% for Kauai and Maui and 26% for Oahu. ...

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Monday, December 19, 2022
​Counties should not profit from Hawaii's housing crisis
By Keli'i Akina PhD @ 12:00 AM :: 1205 Views :: Honolulu County, Taxes, Cost of Living

... assessments of all real property on Oahu went up by 12.4% compared with the previous year. And that’s just the average ....

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Saturday, December 10, 2022
Knowledge is key to Jones Act reform
By Keli'i Akina PhD @ 9:52 PM :: 945 Views :: Jones Act

... American Samoa and the U.S. Virgin Islands are both exempt from the Jones Act — and they like it that way ....

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Saturday, December 3, 2022
Licensing laws a license to hold back workers
By Keli'i Akina PhD @ 6:12 PM :: 948 Views :: Labor, Small Business

... “License to Work” study looks at state regulations nationwide ....

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Thursday, December 1, 2022
Evidence of Fraud, Waste, and Abuse at OHA from 2012-2016
By Keli'i Akina PhD @ 8:27 PM :: 1113 Views

... 22 financial transactions, worth over $7 million, made by the Office of Hawaiian Affairs ....

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Sunday, November 27, 2022
Let's restore reason to city planning
By Keli'i Akina PhD @ 2:59 AM :: 1064 Views :: Development, Land Use

... Arbitrary Lines: How Zoning Broke the American City and How to Fix It ....

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Sunday, November 20, 2022
​It's a perfect time to cut taxes
By Keli'i Akina PhD @ 2:13 AM :: 906 Views :: Taxes, Cost of Living

... many Hawaii families are taking a hard look at their finances and calculating how inflation and recession will affect their holiday plans, if not their entire economic futures ....

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Friday, November 18, 2022
It’s our kuleana to ensure campaign promises are kept
By Keli'i Akina PhD @ 5:13 PM :: 820 Views :: Hawaii State Government, Politicians

... If we don’t demand action, followup on our demands and show the consequences at the ballot box, then we have failed in our civic duty ....

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Saturday, November 12, 2022
Red Flags 2: Fraud, Waste, and Abuse at OHA
By Keli'i Akina PhD @ 4:00 PM :: 2700 Views :: Akaka Bill, Ethics, OHA

... The PM report found 22 of the 38 questionable transactions with evidence of fraud, waste and abuse ... OHA noted matters requiring criminal prosecution will be turned over to the relevant authorities for appropriate action ....

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Sunday, November 6, 2022
How to win the housing permitting game
By Keli'i Akina PhD @ 1:28 AM :: 1122 Views :: Honolulu County, Development

... delays, missing emails and bureaucratic difficulties ....

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Tuesday, November 1, 2022
Protecting OHA from Corruption
By Keli'i Akina PhD @ 9:25 PM :: 1566 Views :: Ethics, OHA

“...Powerful members of our community engaged in wrongdoing…various official watchdogs engage in willful blindness....”

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Monday, October 31, 2022
Short-term rental ban deserves short life
By Keli'i Akina PhD @ 6:57 PM :: 1041 Views :: Honolulu County, Small Business, Tourism

... Formerly known as Bill 41, the new law was supposed to go into effect this week, but a federal judge temporarily blocked it until its provisions can be hashed out in court ....

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Tuesday, October 25, 2022
Hawaii’s biggest barrier to more housing is politics
By Keli'i Akina PhD @ 5:27 PM :: 1270 Views :: Development, Land Use, Cost of Living

... The result is exactly what we have in Hawaii: a lot of talk about lowering the cost of housing, but very little effective reform ....

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Tuesday, October 18, 2022
Do the right thing for Maui housing, not just ‘something’
By Keli'i Akina PhD @ 7:29 PM :: 1018 Views :: Maui County, Development, Land Use, Cost of Living

“...First, do no harm....”

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Sunday, October 16, 2022
Housing Crisis: Data Beats Anecdotes
By Keli'i Akina PhD @ 9:51 PM :: 1015 Views :: Development, Land Use, Cost of Living

“...Are out-of-state buyers, especially foreigners, really driving Hawaii’s high home prices?....”

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Saturday, October 8, 2022
Putting a human face on Hawaii's doctor shortage
By Keli'i Akina PhD @ 10:31 PM :: 2093 Views :: Health Care, Taxes, Cost of Living

... they told me, ‘Send this person to Costco’ ....

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Tuesday, October 4, 2022
​Will Hawaii have to beg for a Jones Act waiver too?
By Keli'i Akina PhD @ 3:52 AM :: 1040 Views :: Jones Act

... It’s hard not to look at the delay, political gamesmanship and dueling press statements and wonder how long it will be until Hawaii is in a similar situation ....

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Saturday, October 1, 2022
A New Source of Wealth for the Hawaiian People
By Keli'i Akina PhD @ 11:50 PM :: 1353 Views :: Development, OHA

... I have been a strong advocate of protecting OHA’s funds from fraud, waste and abuse. I am as passionate about growing those funds to meet the needs of Hawaiians ....

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Friday, September 30, 2022
Is the World Running out of Resources?
By Keli'i Akina PhD @ 12:04 AM :: 820 Views :: Environment

... Superabundance: The Story of Population Growth, Innovation, and Human Flourishing on an Infinitely Bountiful Planet ....

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Wednesday, September 14, 2022
Corruption in Paradise -- Government Watchdogs Look the Other Way
By Keli'i Akina PhD @ 4:19 AM :: 3209 Views :: Ethics

... many government watchdog entities appear to have been willfully ignoring, or even tacitly approving, some of Hawaii’s most egregious corruption scandals, according to Randy Roth ....

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Sunday, September 11, 2022
​Top-down energy plans not going down easy
By Keli'i Akina PhD @ 1:41 AM :: 1172 Views :: Energy, Environment, Cost of Living

... how we got to this point ....

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Saturday, September 3, 2022
Will more bureaucracy solve permit delays?
By Keli'i Akina PhD @ 5:00 PM :: 1426 Views :: Development, Land Use, Cost of Living

... the average delay for permits or approvals in Hawaii is more than three times as high as the national mean ....

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Friday, September 2, 2022
Good Medicine for OHA’s “Red Flags”
By Keli'i Akina PhD @ 4:36 PM :: 1681 Views :: Ethics, OHA

... Here are some examples of “Red Flag” disbursements by OHA and the concerns raised by CLA ....

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Thursday, September 1, 2022
Should sacrifices go just one way?
By Keli'i Akina PhD @ 4:15 PM :: 996 Views :: Hawaii State Government, Taxes

... Does the state have a responsibility to “go without,” if that would be better for the people? ....

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Wednesday, August 31, 2022
How the Jones Act affects Puerto Rico; ‘the uncanny parallels’ with Hawaii
By Keli'i Akina PhD @ 4:01 AM :: 1550 Views :: Jones Act

... the Jones Act is harmful to the territory of Puerto Rico, and people throughout the U.S. should be skeptical of it, says Luis Ponce, co-founder and action director of the Boricuas Unidos en la Diaspora ....

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Wednesday, August 24, 2022
New report removes divisive distraction
By Keli'i Akina PhD @ 1:25 PM :: 1149 Views :: Development, Land Use, Cost of Living

... It is tempting to look for scapegoats when we talk about Hawaii’s housing crisis ....

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Wednesday, August 17, 2022
​How to reduce permit delays for Hawaii homebuilding
By Keli'i Akina PhD @ 3:55 AM :: 2352 Views :: Hawaii County , Development, Small Business

... in Hawaii County, residential permits take about 143 days to issue. In Honolulu, it’s 108 days for residential projects and 432 days for commercial projects over $1 million ....

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Saturday, August 6, 2022
When bureaucracy grows, housing does not
By Keli'i Akina PhD @ 7:28 PM :: 1413 Views :: Maui County, Development, Land Use, Cost of Living

... more regulation and delays ....

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