Report Renews Push to Turn Hawaiians into Fake Indian Tribe
Supreme Court Releases Opinion Striking Down HSTA Property Tax ConAm
Surfboards count as 'vessels' under the Jones Act, and it's creating big problems for workers' comp
HC&S Land Sold to Real Farmer
Trump Signs Farm Bill Legalizing Hemp
Hawaii Population—First 2yr Decline Since Statehood
SA: For the first time since statehood in 1959, Hawaii’s population declined for two consecutive years with fewer births, more deaths and a greater number of residents moving to the mainland.
The trend is alarming because without enough people economic growth could be affected, said Eugene Tian, state economist with Department of Business, Economic Development and Tourism.
“That is something significant because with fewer people it helps a little bit in the housing shortage, but there will definitely be less spending consumption and that will reduce economic growth,” said Tian, adding that 70 percent of gross domestic product is due to consumer spending. “Because the U.S. economy in the last two years has been growing faster than in Hawaii, people are looking for more opportunities and a lower cost of living.”
Hawaii was one of only nine states with waning populations, the latest Census Bureau report released this week shows. The others were Alaska, New York, Connecticut, Illinois, Louisiana, Mississippi, Wyoming and West Virginia….
The state population dropped by 3,712, or 10 people per day, from July 2017 to July 2018. There were 17,326 births, 12,660 deaths and 4,075 people migrating to the islands from foreign countries. However, 12,430 residents left Hawaii for the mainland during that same period….
Those 65 and older accounted for 17.8 percent of the population in 2017, ranking Hawaii the seventh-oldest state in the nation.
The resident population fell to 1,420,491 in July from 1,424,203 in July 2017. Hawaii’s population dropped by about 3,900 people from July 2016 to July 2017.
SA: Hawaii’s people growing up, and heading out
read … Hawaii’s population has declined and could affect the economy
68 Oahu Homeless Dead after Lifetime on the Streets
SA: … Sixty-eight homeless people who died in shelters or on the streets of Oahu this year will be recognized tonight, the longest night of the year, at the fourth annual “Blue Christmas” event.
Thirty-one of the homeless who died were clients of the Institute for Human Services, a record high….
The Hawai‘i Health & Harm Reduction Center also reported a record-high number of client deaths this year: 14….
While the term “chronically homeless” is often used, Carvalho said it belies the severity of many clients’ medical conditions.
“We’re talking pancreatic cancer, advanced diabetes, heart diseases, stroke,” Carvalho said. “These clients cannot be on their own, and they need intense daily supervision and health care.”…
(Homeless aging out of the system.)
read … Service will commemorate deaths of 68 Oahu homeless
Caldwell ‘Seriously Considering’ Excluding Prosecutor from Public Safety Meetings
CB: …Mayor’s office is “seriously considering” Susan Ballard’s request that the prosecuting attorney be excluded from public safety meetings because of reports he’s under investigation.
Honolulu Police Chief Susan Ballard believes Prosecuting Attorney Keith Kaneshiro should not be attending monthly public safety staff meetings because of reports that he’s a target of a federal investigation into Honolulu law enforcement.
Ballard notified city Managing Director Roy Amemiya in a Tuesday email that she was “uncomfortable having Keith Kaneshiro” and another person, whose name was redacted by city officials, attending the weekly meetings in the mayor’s office. The email was released Thursday.
“I understand that he is innocent until proven guilty, but in my experience, if you get a target letter, you will be indicted,” Ballard wrote. “The sharing of any sensitive information at this point, I believe is not in the best interest of the police department or the city.”
HNN: Here’s the email the police chief sent to the city about Honolulu’s prosecutor
SA Editorial: Kaneshiro needs to step down
read … Police Chief: Sharing Information With Kaneshiro Not In City’s ‘Best Interest’
Hearing set for petition on Kaneshiro impeachment
SA: … A petition to impeach Honolulu Prosecuting Attorney Keith Kaneshiro is getting its first court hearing next month.
State Circuit Judge Jeffrey P. Crabtree has scheduled the hearing for 10:30 a.m. Jan. 8.
Honolulu businessman Tracy Yoshimura filed the petition in state court Tuesday. He wants the court to remove Kaneshiro because of a federal investigation involving him, his First Deputy Chasid Sapolu and supervising Deputy Janice Futa. ….
read … Hearing set for petition on Kaneshiro impeachment
Honolulu Meets Federal Demands On Rail Project
CB: Honolulu is one step closer to securing $744 million in federal funds needed to build the city’s rail project to its planned terminus at Ala Moana Center.
In a letter sent Thursday, the Federal Transit Authority confirmed the city and the Honolulu Authority for Rapid Transportation, the agency overseeing the transit project,satisfied three ultimatums the federal agency set forth in September.
For its part, the city committed $44 million of its own funds for the project – the first time city property tax dollars will go toward building the rail project.
HART both pursue a public-private partnership to complete the project’s final stretch into town and submitted an updated recovery plan for the project to the FTA….
Federal funds won’t be released until the FTA approves the project’s updated recovery plan, which outlines how HART plans to pay for the $9.19 billion project.
The federal funds also won’t be released at once. The FTA’s letter said HART actually needs to follow the deadlines and cost estimates outlined in its recovery plan….
“In particular, FTA will continue to closely monitor the progress of the contract for the City Center Guideway and Stations and Pearl Highlands Garage and Transit Center, anticipated to be awarded by the end of September 2019,” the letter said. “This procurement remains the largest area of risk to the project.”….
read … Honolulu Meets Federal Demands On Rail Project
With Pre-K Sales Pitch Needed, DoE Suddenly Wants MORE Testing
KHON: … We're told third grade is the first time students are assessed using a standardized test. The results are not in yet, but this measurement is only a portion of the data the state Executive Office on Early Learning is trying to collect.
State-funded pre-K started in 2014. Those kids who entered into the program then are now in elementary school.
"There is currently no kindergarten assessment in place for the state so the first time we are going to measure the students progress is in the 3rd grade," said EOEL Director Lauren Moriguchi.
The standardized test is called the Smarter Balanced Assessment. It will be taken next year. The Executive Office on Early Learning runs the pre-K program.
"We have our own results that show that 93.3 percent are ready for kindergarten, but we aren't able to compare that with the rest of the state. So this opportunity in 3rd grade will allow us to look at how the students who have come through the EOEL pre-K program are doing in comparison to the other students in the state," said Moriguchi. …
read … Sales Pitch for Pre K
Homeless shelter for young adults rapidly expands thanks to state’s ‘ohana zones’ plan
HNN: … A new homeless shelter for young adults in Kailua is suddenly expanding thanks to the governor’s “ohana zones” plan announced last week.
RYSE is getting $600,000 in state grants and is creating new bed space this weekend just in time for Christmas….
RYSE stands for Residential Youth Services and Empowerment, a first-of-its-kind shelter in Hawaii for young adults 18 to 24 on state property next the Oahu Youth Correctional Facility.
With a wait list and nearly always full, RYSE is aimed helping a growing epidemic of homeless youth.
"As soon as they turn 18, they're an adult and they're supposed to fit into this adult model and it just doesn't work," said RYSE executive director Carla Houser.
After last week’s $17 million ohana zones announcement by the governor, RYSE will be getting a $600,000 grant.
"It's surreal in a way but I think it's really a reflection of all of the work we have done up to this point," said Houser.
That unexpected funding means they’ll expand by 50 percent. They’ll go from 20 to 30 beds, add staff and adolescent behavioral health and substance abuse counseling on site….
read … Homeless shelter for young adults rapidly expands thanks to state’s ‘ohana zones’ plan
The Hidden Cost of Shipping Your Holiday Package
HPR: … The Jones Act governs maritime shipping within the domestic United States. In essence, it says that any shipment from one U.S. port to another, it is required to come on a ship built in the United States, owned and operated by an American company, and crewed by American citizens or residents.
That drives up the cost of shipping according to Michael Hansen with the Hawaii Shippers' Council. The reason is that ships built in the United States cost approximately five times more than those built in Japan and South Korea, who supply most of the world's cargo ships. Shipbuilders in Asia employ a mass production model that allows them to achieve economies of scale, churning out more ships at a lower price…..
LINK: Hawaii Shippers Council
read … The Hidden Cost of Shipping Your Holiday Package
Oahu Democrats to Discuss Big Island bioenergy power plant
KITV: … The committee is worried that allowing this power plant to proceed without an environmental assessment will set a bad precedent for any future biomass plants wishing to start up on Oahu….
Melodie Aduja, an Oahu County committee chair in the state's Democratic Party, is worried about what that might do to the environment, saying. "[There will be a] tremendous amount of greenhouse gases as a result of this form of renewable energy source."
She's also concerned the state didn't force this company to do an environmental assessment because it makes renewable energy. And, it wants the Public Utilities Commission to withdraw support for Hu Honua Bioenergy. That's why her committee is getting involved.
KITV4 asked why an Oahu County Democratic committee is getting involved in a Big Island issue. Aduja answers, "Anything that affects one island is going to affect the whole state. The laws are the same."…
read … Oahu politicians meet about Big Island bioenergy power plant
Maui: Enviros Prepare for All-Out War Against Agriculture
MT: …“It was revealed that A&B is nearing completion of a sale to a group who are not from Hawaii. This revelation brings up some questions,” Bill Greenleaf, a farmer, co-owner of Greenleaf Farms, and former Hawai‘i Farmers Union chapter president, said at the time. “What will they grow? Will it feed the people of Hawaii or be non-food crops? Will their cultivation practices add more run-off to our reefs and CO2 to our air?”…
(Translation: We will suck the air out of their lungs.)
“Maui Tomorrow is reviewing the implications of this major development,” the environmental advocacy organization said in a statement. “We look forward to working with the new owner, Mahi Pono, and will encourage them to adopt regenerative agricultural methods. Regenerative farming uses much less water; this will leave more for kalo farming, native stream life and other instream public trust uses. Regenerative agriculture can substantially increase crop yields while sequestering carbon, thus helping to fight climate change. We will also encourage Mahi Pono to grow healthy food that people on Maui can eat.”
(Translation: We will take their water.)
Hawai‘i Farmers Union United President Vincent Mina was cautious but hopeful.
“When you’re dealing with so much land that’s been monocropped with petrochemicals being used as a way to grow that monocrop for a long time, it needs a lot of remediation attention. People who purchase land of this size need a return on their investment, so a lot of people, when they do [purchase], don’t necessarily put the attention to growing the soil first, growing the life of the land first, before they plant crops,” he said.
(Translation: We will control their soil.)
“I don’t know this company, I’m not gonna say that they’re not gonna do this kind of stewardship practices, but at the same time – based on results – we’ll see what happens.”
“I know people are going to be upset about this sale,” he added. “For me, I don’t get too wrapped up in it. I just feel like we have plenty to work with. Let’s get to work and do the best with what we have.”
“I think where we shoot ourself in the foot is that we go out there and put a stick in somebody’s eye or company’s eye and then say, ‘Hey I wanna build a relationship with you,’” Mina continued. “It just doesn’t work like that. It’s all about relationships not only with one another but with the land and I’m just hopeful that somewhere along the way here we can be good partners, good community agricultural partners, and we can find ways to work with one another.”…
(Translation: Pay me.)
read … Usual Suspects
Maui Enviros will Grab for Water to Destroy New Farm
MN: … Environmental groups were wary of the implications of the sale and questioned whether A&B should have broached the possibility of a sale last month to the state Board of Land and Natural Resources, which was taking up leases for water drawn by A&B from state land.
At the hearing, the company was granted a time extension for water-use permits to take water from streams on state lands in East Maui for its ditch, tunnel and siphon system. In addition, the Sierra Club of Hawaii was later denied a contested case hearing on the decision.
The diversion of water from East Maui has been a flashpoint between A&B and East Maui taro growers, Hawaiian practitioners and conservation groups, who say the diversion system has dried up streams.
“We are a little confused because we brought up the fact that it was very likely these A&B lands were going to be sold to somebody else,” Sierra Club Vice Chairwoman and Huelo resident Lucienne de Naie said. “They never mentioned sale to the board. I was in the room.
“The word was lease. Lease the entire footprint. That’s one reason Sierra Club thought that this board should have more information before they decide.”
The Sierra Club also argued that A&B failed to monitor fish migration up streams or speak with residents living along the 50 or so streams covered in the state leases, de Naie said.
“There was a lot of additional information that would’ve improved the decision-making,” she said. “There was a big information gap.”
Despite her concerns, de Naie was encouraged by the new ownership’s statements on dialogue with the community. She said she hopes officials reach out to local farmers’ groups, the Aha Moku Council and others.
“We’re optimistic that it’s not just window dressing,” she said. “Perhaps the new owner will be really interested in working to address some of these issues that have existed 50, 60, 70 years unresolved. We fully believe there’s enough water to share, but there needs to be the right type of water use and management.”
Albert Perez, executive director of Maui Tomorrow Foundation, said he looks forward to working with the new owners and encouraged them to adopt regenerative agricultural methods, which use much less water. He said the method will leave more water for kalo farming, native stream life and other instream public trust uses.
“Regenerative agriculture can substantially increase crop yields while sequestering carbon, thus helping to fight climate change,” Perez said. “We will also encourage Mahi Pono to grow healthy food that people on Maui can eat.”….
SA: Agricultural company buys former Maui sugar land from A&B
read … Grab for Water
Quack Anti-Vaxxers Mobilize for Kauai Hearing
KGI: …Concerned Kauai citizens are gearing up for today’s public hearing on immunization and health requirements for school attendance, set to start at 2 p.m.
Located in the state Department of Health Kauai District Health Office conference room, at 3040 Umi Street in Lihue, the meeting is hosted by the DOH, and will run until 4 p.m….
Several Kauai parents have already submitted testimony on the topic.
“The trend today is more and more people do not immunize because they see the results of damaged children and death,” said Toni Liljengren (a new age practitioner) in testimony submitted to DOH and TGI. “We want to protect our basic, constitutional rights, and put an end to the travesty of toxic shots into humanity.”…
She said she’s attending the meeting and submitting testimony because she’s worried about stricter rules on religious and medical exemptions and thinks there’s potential for those exemptions to disappear down the road.
“All’s I can tell you is it’s confused everyone,” Liljengren said. “We’re looking for clarity.” (Yeah. Right. Uh-huh.)
Miguel Amador, of Kilauea, said Thursday he’s concerned because he watched California take steps toward mandatory vaccinations and said he’ll be at today’s meeting to stand up against that in Hawaii….
read … Spreading Disease