Ige to Veto 15 Bills
DoE to Open Military Transition Centers
BoE Approves ESSA Plan Submission to Feds
Celebrate Hokulea Return, Oppose Telescope?
SA: …TMT’s nonprofit has pledged $1 million annually over its 19-year sublease to boost science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) education for students on Hawaii island. It has kept that pledge for two years now, despite TMT’s legal limbo.
That limbo includes the land board’s decision on the Mauna Kea permit for TMT, as well as another legal obstacle challenging the University of Hawaii’s sublease with TMT. The entanglements, involving Hawaii’s Supreme Court, are delaying a worthwhile project, which Hawaii risks losing if construction cannot start by April….
In his November testimony at the contested case hearing, Hawaiian navigator and voyaging canoe captain Chad Kalepa Baybayan provided profound perspective.
“It is culturally consistent to advocate for Hawaiian participation in a field of science that continued to enable that tradition, and a field of work in which we ought to lead,” he said. “I firmly believe that the highest level of desecration rests in actions that remove the opportunity and choices from the kind of future our youth can own.”
Baybayan is former resident navigator for the Imiloa Astronomy Center, and yes, an employee of UH, which manages the Mauna Kea summit under a state Department of Land and Natural Resources lease. But notably, he also is “a descendant of some of the best naked-eye astronomers the world has ever known.”
In rare splendor, Hokule‘a’s crews have marveled at the map of the heavens, deeply studied its cosmic array, and divined inspiration and guidance from the stars. These celestial mysteries speak to us, to Hokule‘a’s voyagers as they once did to the ancient Polynesian wayfinders. Likewise, they call to the astronomers atop Mauna Kea — rare among the world’s best sites — and challenge them to explore our universe….
Related: Ancient Astronomy in Hawaii
read … Hokule‘a, TMT show worthiness of stargazing
BoE Handing out Cash to top DoE Execs
SA: …The Board of Education has set aside $114,500 to cover merit-based raises ranging from 2 to 3.75 percent for senior Department of Education executives.
The board this week approved the recommended methodology for awarding increases for the DOE’s six assistant superintendents and 15 complex-area superintendents, pending annual performance evaluations, ongoing this week.
The raises, to take effect July 1, will be tied to the top three of five possible ratings:
>> A 2 percent increase for executives who attain a “fully meets expectations” rating. Department officials said the rate is essentially a cost-of-living increase, based on Hawaii’s consumer price index for 2016-17.
>> A 3 percent increase for any executive who “exceeds expectations.”
>> A 3.75 percent increase for “exceptional” executives.
read … BOE flags $114,500 for DOE executive raises
Hawaii County Council pumps up fuel tax by 261%
HTH: The 7-2 vote allows the county to boost its fuel tax — currently the lowest in the state at 8.8 cents per gallon — incrementally to 23 cents. (261% Increase) The phased approach will bring the Big Island on par with Maui County, which has the highest fuel tax in Hawaii, in the 2019-20 fiscal year.
Motorists will see the first hike of 6.2 cents as early as October followed by 4-cent annual increases the next two years. That’s contingent, however, on the Public Works Department submitting a comprehensive plan to the council regarding how the funds are spent.
“The administration has to show us (something to rubber stamp) and (pretend to) be accountable for the additional monies …,” said Puna Councilwoman Eileen O’Hara, who introduced the amendment adopted by council.
“If I don’t see these improvements, particularly a positive impact in my district, I will be advancing legislation to stifle that future increase,” she later added. (IQ Test: Are you fooled by that kind of talk?)
read … County pumps up fuel tax: Increase of 6.2 cents slated for 1st year of incremental hikes
DOBOR New Fishing Fees – $0.25 per square foot?
KITV: …In Haleiwa, a dispute between fishermen and the Department of Land and Natural Resources over money erupted after what one group calls unexpected fishing fees that came out of nowhere.
The North Shore Hanapa'a Club said it's never heard of a 25-cent-per-square foot charge. That's something the state says it's been authorized to do since 2014.
"The Board of Natural Resources approved the ability for us to issue these right of entry permits for limited duration events, such as a fishing tournament." Said Ed Underwood, Administrator with the Division of Boating and Ocean Recreation.
Although officials say they've been trying to contact the group for a couple of weeks, the club says the fees came with no warning.
The group needed to pay over $400 to be able to run its Jackpot fishing tournament Friday and Saturday at Haleiwa Harbor.
read … Gimme Mo Money
Homeless: “There’s lots of crazy people on ice around here,”
WHT: …Barr and her friend Rosie Maldonado set up an online GoFundMe page after learning of Freddie’s death to help pay for arrangements. It surpassed its $1,500 goal and raised $2,488 by the time it was deactivated hours after being set up.
Dozens of comments on the page offered condolences, personal memories and businesses offered to charter boats and spread Freddie’s ashes for free.
“I came over to Kona when I was 19 or 20 and I always had beer in the back of my truck and I always gave him couple beers,” wrote Mark Axelson, who donated $100 to the cause. “He always was consistently smiling and genuine.”
But before any final arrangements can be made, Freddie’s true identification must be established and relatives, if any are out there, must be located.
Maldonado is trying to chase down leads. She’s piecing together as much information as she can, she said, and has been in contact with Freddie’s case worker and a nurse who worked with him. She has possible last names, as does West Hawaii Today, but those are being withheld pending a final confirmation.
“I just want him to have what he deserves,” said Maldonado, who also worked at Lava Java and knew Freddie for about three years.
She said she’s troubled by the image of Freddie’s final days, spent lying on the ground near Alii Drive or in the hospital, battling pneumonia.
“I don’t think he deserved that,” she said.
Judy Donovan, spokeswoman for Kona Community Hospital, couldn’t comment on anything involving any of their patients.
But Barr said she picked up Freddie from Kona Community Hospital around June 15 as he was being discharged after being admitted for being sick with an injured shoulder. Maldonado declined to share the nurse or case worker with whom she’s in contact out of concern for privacy but both she and Barr said Freddie died of pneumonia.
What part an alleged attack on Freddie days prior to his death played isn’t known. Maldonado said the nurse told her the trauma did affect the man’s downward health spiral.
The Hawaii Police Department said Friday they didn’t receive any report of the alleged assault and didn’t have any information.
But people who knew the man said it did happen, including Steve England, who is also homeless and knew Freddie well.
“I guess that makes me the senior uncle now,” said the wheelchair-bound man who sat on Alii Drive waving to passing motorists Friday, but with tears in his eyes….
“There’s lots of crazy people on ice around here,” he added. “It makes them crazy.”….
HPR: Helping Hand - IHS, The Institute for Human Services
read … Ice
Star Adv: Gays are Racist, Need to Evolve
AP: …Gay pride marches in New York City, San Francisco and in between this weekend will have plenty of participants — and also protests directed at them from other members of the LGBT community, speaking out against what they see as increasingly corporate celebrations that prioritize the experiences of gay white men and ignore issues facing black and brown LGBT people.
The protests disrupted other pride events earlier this month. In Washington, D.C., the No Justice No Pride group blocked the parade route. In Columbus, Ohio, four people were arrested after a group set out to protest violence against minority LGBT people and the recent acquittal of a police officer in the shooting death of Philando Castile, a black man, during a traffic stop….
the broader LGBT-rights movement “has been whitewashed” — dominated to a large extent by white gay men….
“The real test will be, can the LGBT movement own up to its historic legacy of racism and evolve to be more accountable and inclusive of people of color?”…
That divide has led to controversy when attempts have been made to address race, as in Philadelphia. The city drew criticism last summer when activists raised concerns that the Gayborhood — the city’s main gay enclave — discriminated against blacks. Gay blacks complained of dress codes banning Timberlands and sweatpants, of not being served in a timely manner at bars and of being stopped and asked for identification at clubs while white customers walked in unbothered.
In January, Philadelphia officials issued a report confirming longstanding racism in the Gayborhood and pledged to penalize businesses that did not make changes….
read … Gays are Racist