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Tuesday, May 21, 2019
May 21, 2019 News Read
By Andrew Walden @ 7:13 PM :: 967 Views

Lyon Corruption: Will Peter Christian Run or Turn Himself In? 

Maui Injection Wells Settlement Could Lead to 1000s of Lawsuits

MN: … Maui County officials said if the long-standing injection well lawsuit is settled as is, it could leave the county open to other lawsuits against its other injection wells, possibly millions of dollars in fines and a need for millions of dollars for infrastructure work to remove the treated wastewater….

Department of Environmental Management Director Eric Nakagawa said Monday during a Maui County Council committee meeting that the county is looking to the Supreme Court to make a decision in a seven-year lawsuit to bring clarity to the Clean Water Act. The high court could take up the case in October.

But, if the matter is settled, then a lower court’s ruling (from the 9th U.S. Circuit Court) would apply, in which the court found the county was in violation of the Clean Water Act with its Lahaina Wastewater Reclamation Facility injection wells, county officials said…..

During a presentation Monday afternoon, Nakagawa said that the 9th Circuit’s decision would require an NPDES permit for “thousands of other types of sources in Hawaii, most of which are along the coastline.”…

the 9th Circuit’s decision put injection wells under the Clean Water Act, and Nakagawa questioned what it would do to all of the other categories under the Federal Safe Drinking Water Act.

He said that if the county prevails, the Clean Water Act and its provisions will go on as it has and the win will not “gut” the act as some opponents say…. 

read … County fears settling injection well case could lead to more suits, fines

Privacy vs Big Tech: Will Hawaii HB702 Spur US Congress to Act?

CB: … California, for example, recently passed legislation giving citizens the right to know what data businesses have on them – and to block the information’s sale to third parties. It’s the first of its kind in the U.S. and has prompted lawmakers in other states to try to follow suit, including Hawaii….

That’s gotten the attention of businesses, especially in tech, which have been lobbying Congress to preempt a possible patchwork of state laws with what could amount to a weaker federal one. Some observers predict this could be that rare issue that inspires bipartisan compromise in Congress this year….

HB702: Text, Status

read … Congress Is Considering Privacy Legislation – Be Afraid

Jury pool for the Kealoha trial narrowed down to less than 50 people

HNN: … The jury pool for the Kealoha Mailbox trial has been narrowed down to 47 potential jurors.

That’s down from the initial 413 people who were summoned to the Blaisdell center last week.

The final cut to 12 jurors and 4 alternates will happen Wednesday when attorneys exercise their right to eliminate jurors they are concerned about.

Opening arguments in the trial will be held immediately after that. …

CB: Mailbox Crime Didn’t Begin With The Kealoha Case

read … Jury pool for the Kealoha trial narrowed down to less than 50 people

Bills On Ige’s Desk Could Let Lots and Lots of Criminals Out

CB:  … Big changes may be coming for criminal justice in Hawaii as a result of a package of bills approved by the Legislature this year.

The state could see a top-to-bottom institutional transformation.

Low-income people charged with nonviolent crimes who are not considered flight risks may find it easier to get out of jail while awaiting trial. The state’s eight jails and prisons would be independently monitored by expert criminologists committed to reform. And for the first time, the state would have a system to track statistics on crime, the courts, punishment and rehabilitation….

The oversight commission would monitor the correctional system, with the assistance of a trained coordinator who is “well-versed in criminal justice reform and maintains a firm commitment to the correctional system’s transition to a rehabilitative and therapeutic model,” according to the law. 

(Translation: “Soft on crime”)

An important first step would be making sure well-qualified people fill those positions, according to Merce and Kat Brady, coordinator of the Community Alliance on Prisons….

(Translation: “Soft on crime”)

read … Bills On Ige’s Desk Could Be ‘Game-Changer’ For Criminal Justice Reform

Unions, Hotels Pressures Ige To Veto Pro-Airbnb Bill

CB: … A coalition calling itself It’s Time, Hawaii, is airing a spot on cable television and digital channels urging Hawaii Gov. David Ige to veto Senate Bill 1292.

The bill would require hosting platforms that collect fees for booking short-term rental units to register as tax collection agents and collect general excise and transient accommodation taxes from operators and plan managers.

Supporters argue that SB 1292 will brings tens of millions of dollars into state coffers annually while opponents fear the ruin of neighborhoods. …

It’s Time, Hawaii, describes itself a local community groups, civic organizations, labor and hospitality industry leaders and residents, according to a press release Tuesday.

They include Save Oahu’s Neighborhoods, Save North Shore Neighborhoods, HI Good Neighbor, Keep It Kailua, Hawaii’s Thousand Friends, Unite Here Local 5 and the American Hotel and Lodging Association….

read … Coalition Pressures Ige To Veto Pro-Airbnb Bill

Jones Act expensive

SA: … While most countries with coastlines and navigable rivers have similar laws regulating their domestic waterborne commerce — known as maritime cabotage — the U.S. system is the world’s most restrictive. This is primarily due to the requirement vessels in domestic trade be constructed at a shipyard in the U.S. typically at five times the cost of comparable ships built in Asia….

Clearly, these laws and policy have failed. Today, less than 2 percent of the seaborne foreign trade is carried by U.S. flag ships, domestic ocean shipments have declined by 95% since 1980, the U.S. flag oceangoing fleet has declined by 93% since 1960, and effectively none of the privately-owned ships providing military sealift are drawn from the U.S.-built fleet….

A key failure has been to produce a fleet of suitable ships to meet the nation’s domestic ocean transportation needs. There are just 99 oceangoing Jones Act-qualified ships including 57 tankers and 25 containerships in narrow capacity ranges. In comparison, there are approximately 42,000 foreign-flag ships trading worldwide incorporating a wide variety of types and capacities. Most types are absent from the Jones Act fleet including liquefied natural gas carriers and livestock carriers….

read … Jones Act expensive

Subminimum Wages for Disabled: Will US Congress Act where Hawaii Legislature Did Not?

CB: … Sheltered workshops try to market themselves as part of the vocational rehabilitation system, as if they are preparing the workers for mainstream jobs. This claim has long been rejected by organizations of people with disabilities.

Sheltered workshops confuse rehabilitation with entertainment, as if we are capable of nothing else besides being entertained by smiling caretakers who give us the illusion of working. This confusion was flushed out as a conflict of interest in the public hearing testimony on Governor’s Message 734….

For the first time in 81 years of advocacy, there is finally a congressional committee hearing on a bill to end the payment of disability-based subminimum wages.

The House Education and Labor Committee will hold a full committee hearing on the Transformation to Competitive Employment Act, H.R. 873, on Tuesday. Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard has repeatedly cosponsored this legislation, and former Congresswoman Colleen Hanabusa did, too.

I am hopeful that, with enough support from good leaders in Congress, the bill will pass and the practice will end….

Background:

read … The Injustice of Disability-Based Subminimum Wages

Hawaii ranked 8th highest state for number of missing persons per capita

KITV: … There are 120 cases that are still active dating back decades ….

read … 8th Highest

Sen. Mazie Hirono Says She Told 8th Graders Their Abortion Rights are Under Attack

M: … A number of congressional Democrats took the megaphone on Tuesday at an abortion rights protest in front of the Supreme Court, following the major controversy over the restrictive new law in Alabama.

When Hawaii Democrat Sen. Mazie Hirono was up, she told a story about speaking to eighth grade students who “get it,” to whom she apparently spoke before returning to D.C. for the protest.

“I just left 60 eighth graders from a public school in Hawaii, and I told them I was coming to a rally in front of the Supreme Court, and they said, ‘Why?’,” Hirono said. “I said it’s because we are–we have to fight for abortion rights and they knew all about it.”

“And I asked the girls in that group of eighth graders: how many of you girls think that government should be telling us, women, when and if we want to have babies, not a single one of them raised their hands,” she continued.

“And then, the boys who were there among the sixty, I told them, you know, it’s kind of hard for a woman to get pregnant without you guys,” she said, and the crowd laughed. “They got it.” ….

read … Sen. Mazie Hirono Says She Told 8th Graders Their Abortion Rights are Under Attack

100 Quacks Looking for Victims: End-of-life doula training took place here recently

MN: … Doorway Into Light, a nonprofit organization here on Maui … has been providing education, support, counsel and care to the dying and their families since 2006. I have offered classes at the university here, the senior center, churches and community organizations. Our organization works closely with the State of Hawaii, local hospices, religious organizations, funeral homes and community nonprofits….

Our third annual International Death Doula Training here on Maui was just completed on April 29.

One hundred people from around the world gathered here for five days to increase their knowledge and skills in the spiritual, emotional, psychological and logistical support of the dying and their families. They were nurses, hospice nurses and volunteers, social workers, therapists, chaplains, ministers and lay people.

Many continue on in our practicum program in their communities.

The end-of-life doula, or death doula, is an emerging field of professionals bringing skills to communities across the country to compliment and supplement current care options at the end of life….

(That’s the sales pitch.)

Reality: ‘Death doula’ accused of taking assets of woman suffering from foot pain before death

read … Quack Quack

Defending Convicted Child Molester, Michael Green Slimes Victim

WHT: Honolulu attorney Michael Green impugned the statement of the victim, now an adult, at the sentencing of prominent Maui organic farmer Michael Zelko. The 59-year-old Zelko, who, in a deal with prosecutors, pleaded no contest to 11 counts of third-degree sexual assault, was sentenced by Hilo Circuit Judge Greg Nakamura to five years in prison. The Hawaii Paroling Authority will decide how much time Zelko will ultimately serve….

… The victim noted a trial would’ve allowed her federally protected medical and counseling records to be scrutinized in open court.

“You were going to allow my therapy records, the things I used to heal from Mike Zelko’s abuse, to be used against me by Mike Zelko and his attorney in a public courtroom,” she said. “There’s no place I can talk to a professional without having my private thoughts and feelings shared with the person who had already traumatized me in ways you can’t fathom. I couldn’t write in a journal. I couldn’t talk to a therapist. And I will never get my childhood back. But I continued with this soul-crushing process to prevent Mike Zelko from stealing another little girl’s joy.

“… Nothing you can do will erase the scars that Mike Zelko has caused. But you can prevent other little girls from being sexually assaulted by this pedophile for five years. You can give him the maximum amount of prison time. You can give every single child on the Big Island, on Maui, in the entire state of Hawaii five years of safety from this pedophile.”

Green took apparent umbrage at the woman’s description of Zelko.

“She’s lucky this case didn’t go to trial. I will tell you that,” Green told the judge. “Therapy? She went to seven different psychiatrists or psychologists and she accused some other kid’s father of doing the same thing to her.”

“So, Mr. Green,” Nakamura interjected, but Green went on.

“I know we’re getting an ‘open five,’” Green continued, referring to the actual time the parole board will order his client to serve. “We’ll take the open five. He’s not a pedophile. He pled no contest.

“She should be happy that’s the way it ends.”

“Mr. Green, I think it’s not appropriate to go after a complaining witness,” Nakamura said.

“Your Honor, you know we went through two and a half or more years of this,” Green replied. “The state made the decision to throw out (the Class A felonies). Let him plead no contest. And now we have to sit up here with (Zelko’s) daughter and his family and hear her calling him things like that? When she knows better.

“But nevertheless, we made the deal. He’s getting the open five. … But she was seeing psychologists and psychiatrists long before she met him.”

“That’s not this complaining witness that made the statement, Mr. Green,” Nakamura said.

Zelko spoke briefly, but didn’t address the victims or apologize. Instead, he thanked the judge for reducing his $1 million bail to $260,000 and for allowing his ankle monitor to be removed after his no contest plea in March….

read … Slime

Soft on Crime: Tweeker, Arsonist, Thief avoids jail time for stealing vehicles while on probation

MN: … Aaron Wilsey, 26, of Wailuku was released from jail after spending about two years incarcerated while his cases were pending.  (Translation: Nobody wanted to bail this guy out and that’s the ONLY justice in this story.)…

While Wilsey asked to be sentenced to probation, the prosecution had sought a prison sentence for the defendant, who previously had been placed on probation for second-degree arson and third-degree promoting of a dangerous drug.

“What’s telling is that while on probation, he continued to reoffend,” said Deputy Prosecutor Shelly Miyashiro.

In addition to accumulating new arrests, Wilsey failed to report to his probation officer and didn’t follow through with obtaining substance abuse treatment, employment or education, Miyashiro said.

“The defendant has not shown he’s willing to turn his life around,” she said. “He’s not shown he would be receptive to treatment.”

In two 2017 criminal cases, Wilsey had pleaded no contest to two counts of unauthorized control of a propelled vehicle, resisting arrest and third-degree promoting of a detrimental drug. The stolen vehicles were a 2017 Honda motorcycle and a 2004 Suzuki Colt motorcycle, according to court records….

When Bissen asked why he needed the stolen vehicles, Wilsey said it was for transportation.

The judge asked if Wilsey had thought that the owners also needed the vehicles for transportation.

“At the time, I did not,” Wilsey said. “My mind was clouded by the substances I was on at the time. I was not thinking. I didn’t think of that at all.”

Bissen said he thought what Wilsey said was true.

“You certainly weren’t thinking of others,” the judge told Wilsey. “You were being selfish and thinking of yourself.”

Bissen said he wasn’t sentencing Wilsey to prison in his latest cases because he would have to serve a 10-year prison term for his second-degree arson conviction.

“For the new offenses, I don’t think you deserve a 10-year prison sentence,”Bissen told Wilsey. “While you’re not a great candidate for probation, I also don’t think you should go to prison for 10 years for taking this motorcycle and this car while on probation.” ….

read … Soft on Crime

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