Supreme Court Justice Hands Down Injunction Against Nai Aupuni
An Open Secret—Homosexual Child Molesters in Hollywood
Criminal Al Hee to be Sentenced Monday—Prosecutors Ask for 41 months
SA: Federal prosecutors are recommending that Honolulu telecommunications executive Albert Hee be sentenced to up to four years and three months in prison for skimming about $4 million from his company Waimana Enterprises to pay for his children’s college tuition; false salaries to family members; vacations to Disney World, Tahiti, Switzerland and France; and a million-dollar home in Santa Clara, Calif., among dozens of other personal expenses.
Hee, who was convicted in July on multiple counts of tax fraud for not reporting many of the personal expenses as income, is scheduled to be sentenced Monday by U.S. District Judge Susan Oki Mollway….
Flashback: Sandwich Isles Communications: Political Connections Pay Off
read … Prosecutors want Hee locked up for at least 41 months
NextEra: PUC Hearings Begin Monday
CB: …NextEra Energy and Hawaiian Electric Industries have their work cut out for them in the upcoming evidentiary hearing before the state Public Utilities Commission.
Gov. David Ige’s administration, the Consumer Advocate, solar companies, environmental groups and others intervening in the docket have all lined up against the proposed $4.3 billion merger.
The trial-like hearing starts Monday at Blaisdell Center. It’s scheduled to last 12 days over three weeks, but it could go longer if necessary. PUC Chair Randy Iwase has said a decision by the three-member commission isn’t expected until June or later….
read … NextEra Deal: Critical Hearings Set To Begin In $4.3B Merger Case
Star-Adv: Homeless effort makes headway
SA: Mayor Kirk Caldwell's administration announced closure of the deal last week to purchase two unoccupied school buildings, near Piikoi and Hassinger streets in Makiki, that can be converted to units for the homeless.
This is the first outright acquisition of property the city has completed, a solution commonly tapped in mainland urban areas to address homelessness but one that's been elusive in high-cost Hawaii.
It's a promising venture, despite the $5.5 million price tag. That's because it follows the "Housing First" model that's been so successful across the nation….
Officials lately have struggled to clear another Kakaako homeless encampment -- that needs to be settled soon -- but there's hope for resolution of another long-pending issue next week.
On Monday, the state plans to announce the selection of a site for a transitional shelter to accommodate about 15 families, said Scott Morishige, the state homeless coordinator.
Another recent accomplishment was a conference bringing in potential landlords for homeless tenants. While the state and city work to expand the inventory of affordable units, the participation of the existing rental marketplace is crucial.
The city has partnered with the Institute for Human Services through a $2.1 million yearly contract to find Housing First apartments for homeless people across Oahu. There does seem to be movement. The first contract just ended, with 173 people being placed in housing around Oahu….
read … Headway
Gabbard not shy about taking on Obama over Syria
Borreca: Devising a U.S. strategy for simultaneously dealing with Syria's president, Bashar al-Assad, Syria's refugees, al-Qaida, the Islamic State and the Russians is an international version of a very dangerous game of pick-up sticks.
In the game, you dump a pile of sticks on the table and then take turns trying to remove one stick at a time without moving its neighbors.
In real life, the U.S. needs a successful strategy not to defeat the Islamic State (ISIS) (Not to defeat ISIS? Really? Hello?) or overthrow Assad, but to forge some sort of peace in the region….
read … Not Shy
Travel and tourism officials disagree with Gabbard on visa program
SA: National and local tourism officials are emphasizing the need to continue the U.S. visa waiver program in the wake of U.S. Rep. Tulsi Gabbard's call to temporarily suspend the program between the United States and Europe.
Gabbard, D-Hawaii, who began seeking program pullbacks in 2014, reiterated that message Nov. 20 on CNN's "The Situation Room with Wolf Blitzer." In light of the most recent terrorist attacks in Paris, Gabbard said she was concerned about the open avenues of travel that people have between Europe and the U.S….
read … Gabbard
Hypocrisy: Anti-Pesticide Activists Complain State Not Doing Enough About Dengue
AP: Hawaii state Sen. Russell Ruderman worries whenever there's a mosquito buzzing in his home.
Until recently, he didn't give the common pests much thought, but now his wife is six months pregnant and there's a growing dengue fever outbreak on the Big Island, where they live.
"It could threaten her pregnancy, as well as her health," he said of the mosquito-borne illness.
The state Department of Health says there were 107 confirmed cases of dengue fever on the Big Island as of Thursday.
It says it's working with the county to spray 155 properties, including schools, and has started an outreach program to educate people about the illness.
In addition, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is sending an entomologist and a technician to the Big Island next week to further assess the situation.
However, Ruderman and other Big Island lawmakers say the department is downplaying the problem.
"They are not warning people appropriately," said state Rep. Richard Creagan, a non-practicing physician. "It's not a little outbreak now. It's a big outbreak."
Creagan said he wants state health officials to encourage voluntary isolation of people who are infected, be more aggressive about trapping mosquitoes, and warn pregnant women who could suffer complications.
read … Hypocrites
Make decisions based on facts, not fear
MN: A noisy and persistent opposition group on Maui is brushing aside facts and scientific data to promote its political and personal agendas. Anti-cane burning propaganda seeks to influence public perception of an agricultural practice that is allowed in every state in the U.S. and has not been proved to cause health problems on Maui. These activists exaggerate and purposefully misrepresent the health effects of cane burning and continually point to studies that bear little resemblance to our community's environment.
As the executive director of Hawaii Agriculture Research Center, I have seen many studies over the decades regarding the health of our communities and agricultural practices. I have also witnessed how many people can misstate the results of studies or use flawed research to suit their own conclusions….
read … Burn
HART Employs 108 People
SA: The Honolulu Authority for Rapid Transportation employs 108 people, whose monthly salaries range from $2,406 to $21,437; the average monthly salary is $6,068, said HART Director of Communications Jeanne Mariani-Belding, who checked with the transit agency’s Human Resources director for the most current numbers….
SA: Legislature took funds due ERS--and Rail
read … $6000