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Thursday, July 15, 2010
July 15, 2010 News Read
By Andrew Walden @ 1:40 PM :: 10985 Views :: Hawaii County News, Agriculture, Kauai County News, DHHL, Maui County News, Congressional Delegation, Honolulu County News, Democratic Party, Hawaii State Government, Republican Party

Aiona files for Governor: Talks jobs, education, clean energy

Djou campaign raises $935K in 2nd Quarter

Djou: “If our nation continues down this fiscally reckless path, what is happening in Hawaii will be writ large”

Djou backs line item veto to cut waste

Mauna Kea Recreational Users Group says “Whoa” to Kulani Prison land deal

Ugly insults? Or a plot to embarrass a state lawmaker?

Lauren Zirbel, a lobbyist, posted the shark photo on her Facebook page and several friends responded with clever comments. According to a transcript of the exchanges, state Rep. Joey Manahan, (D-Sand Island, Kalihi, Kapalama), — or someone who hijacked his account — joked: “I hear they make good soup.”

State lawmakers voted this year to ban the sale and possession of shark fins and gave Chinese restaurants until next July to use any shark fins in inventory for shark-fin soup.

Tracy Okubo, another lobbyist, who is Chinese, cracked: “Just as Filipinos can joke about eating dog, us Chinese can now joke about eating shark. Lol.”

The person posting as Manahan, who is Filipino, responded that he did not take kindly to people who say Filipinos eat dogs and launched a series of profanities and insults at Okubo.

In one comment, the person posting as Manahan told Okubo, who has lupus: “I hope you die of lupus!”

Okubo posted her own profanities against Manahan. She declined to comment further today other than to say she thought Manahan’s remark about her disease was inexcusable.

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CB: Are Student Test Scores Overrated?

More excuses as the DoE prepares for even greater failure.

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Mufi Hannemann endorses homeless camps

Hannemann supports the concept of a "safe zone" where homeless people can camp long-term, on the condition that such an area have rules (such as no drugs or alcohol), staffing and security to enforce the rules, sanitation and allow pets.

He also said a safe zone likely would have to charge fees to help pay for operating costs and that it should be run by a private operator.

HNN: Mayor Hannemann speaks out about Homeless 'Safe Zones'

KITV: New Bills To Outlaw Camping On City Property, Committee To Examine Homeless In Hawaii

Shapiro: We can’t keep telling the homeless where they can’t be without providing someplace they can be (What part of “shelters” does Shapiro not understand?)

REALITY: Homeless tent cities: Seattle’s decade-long nightmare coming to Honolulu?

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Decades of sewer fee hikes: Mufi’s going-away present

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - Honolulu's sewer system will get a big upgrade but it will come at a cost.  You can expect sewer fees to steadily go up every year for what could be decades, not to mention the construction traffic you might sit in while the work is going on.

The sewer settlement details have been flushed out and you can get ready to sit in more construction traffic.  As part of the deal the city must repair or replace 144 miles of sewer and clean another 500 miles.  In all 40 projects all over Oahu that must be finished in the next six years.  Another 38 projects will need to be evaluated the following four years.  The city will also have to build four back up force mains and come up with spill contingency plans.

SA: Sewer fix means fee hikes

CB: City Council Approves Massive Sewage Settlement

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Oi: This island's trash snafu is no political treasure for mayor

There was a bit of excitement last week when it appeared the maiden voyage of the garbage cruise was finally about to set sail.

Word came from the dock workers' union that the president of the company with the city contract for trash trips was about to make an announcement and that the vessel could soon cast off. Anticipation filled the air, just like the stink and bugs from the garbage.

After an inspection, federal agriculture authorities had recommended approval of the shipments. It seemed all was go for anchors aweigh.

But no.

The final OK didn't come. It seems the official who would make the decision was pau hana for the day.

So with no barges available for three weeks, the transpacific consignment of trash will have to wait, yet again.

RELATED: Djou pushes Feds to cut red tape blocking Honolulu municipal waste exports

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Veto of HB444 continues to reverberate

Honolulu Weekly Editor threatens to close paper

Many people expected that with the merger of the two dailies and the new higher rates, we would gain advertisers. As it turns out, we are losing them, which means that we are losing money. If we lose enough money, well…then all of this goes away….

When I get an earful from somebody whose events have been featured in the paper nearly every single week for years now, and who nevertheless does not advertise with the Weekly, I always wonder where he gets the nerve. More to the point, I wonder what he thinks will happen to his bottom line if we are not around.

It’s not a threat. We keep covering that guy’s events, as well of those of for-profit and non-profit groups alike that spend all of their advertising dollars elsewhere. That’s our job, anything else would be ethically bankrupt, and we’ll keep doing it this way for as long as we are around.

I’m just saying. If guys like that keep going as they have been, “as long as we are around” might not be all that long. That is the reality of the situation.

(Honolulu Weekly Editor Ragnar Carlson’s father Doug Carlson is a paid MufiRail communications consultant.)

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UH Manoa Teach in which launched Save our Schools immortalized in book

How did we get here? Three-and-a-half-day school weeks. Prisoners farmed out to the mainland. Tent camps for the migratory homeless. A blinkered dependence on tourism and the military for virtually all economic activity. The steady degradation of already degraded land. Contempt for anyone employed in education, health, and social service. An almost theological belief in the evil of taxes.   

At a time when new leaders will be elected, and new solutions need to be found, the contributors to The Value of Hawai‘i outline the causes of our current state and offer points of departure for a Hawai‘i-wide debate on our future. The brief essays address a wide range of topics—education, the environment, Hawaiian issues, media, tourism, political culture, law, labor, economic planning, government, transportation, poverty—but the contributors share a belief that taking stock of where we are right now, what we need to change, and what we need to remember is a challenge that all of us must meet.

Written for a general audience, The Value of Hawai‘i provides a cluster of starting points for a larger community discussion of Hawai‘i that should extend beyond the choices of the ballot box this year.

Contributors: Carlos Andrade, Chad Blair, Kat Brady, Susan M. Chandler, Meda Chesney-Lind, Lowell Chun-Hoon, Tom Coffman, Sara L. Collins, Marilyn Cristofori, Henry Curtis, Kathy E. Ferguson, Chip Fletcher, Dana Naone Hall, Susan Hippensteele, Craig Howes, Karl Kim, Sumner La Croix, Ian Lind, Melody Kapilialoha MacKenzie, Mari Matsuda, Davianna McGregor, Neal Milner, Deane Neubauer, Jonathan Kay Kamakawiwo’ole Osorio, Charles Reppun, John P. Rosa, D. Kapua‘ala Sproat, Ramsay Remigius Mahealani Taum, Patricia Tummons, Phyllis Turnbull, Trisha Kehaulani Watson.

(Think of this as Neil Abercrombie’s campaign book—or as the political report from the Hawaii politburo.  Or maybe I am being redundant here.)

RELATED: Media matters: Neither Honolulu daily newspaper reports on large rally on state’s largest university campus, Abercrombie won or lost depending on your choice of newspaper, missed online opportunities, Coming from UH Press: “The Value of Hawaii”

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Hawaii leads nation: #1 in Credit Card debt, #2 in Mortgage debt

With many Hawaii consumers losing their jobs or having their pay cut, the average credit card holder took on an additional $2,263 in debt in the past year.

Not only are Hawaii residents leading the nation in credit card debt, but they are also No. 2 in mortgage debt.

The six-month average mortgage debt per person in the islands was $314,721, significantly higher than the national average of $177,934.

Hawaii fared better on two remaining areas measured by Credit Karma: auto loans and student loans.

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Police DUI program cut almost in half by internal probe

Nearly half of the officers assigned to the Honolulu Police Department's DUI roadblock detail have been temporarily reassigned to other sections of HPD while an investigation continues into false reporting of overtime in the Traffic Division.

HNN: Honolulu police chief addresses DUI overtime scandal

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Lingle nominates three to Circuit Court judgeships

If confirmed by the Senate, the three would fill vacancies created by the retirement of Circuit Judges Eden Elizabeth Hifo, Colleen Hirai and Michael Town (good riddance to him).

RELATED: Governor Lingle nominates Castagnetti, To’oto’o, and Garibaldi Circuit Court judges 

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Moon appoints 4 lawyers to district bench

Chief Justice Ronald Moon appointed four lawyers yesterday to six-year terms on the Honolulu district court bench.

The four are Sherri-Ann Iha, supervising deputy prosecutor in the misdemeanor jury demand division; Steven Nakashima, a partner with Marr Jones & Wang; Michael Tanigawa, a staff attorney with the Intermediate Court of Appeals; and Matthew Viola, a sole practitioner and a part-time district judge.

The appointments are subject to Senate review.

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Marijuana minister compared to Jimmy Swaggart, Jim Jones

The Rev. Dennis Shields, of The Religion of Jesus Church, ordained Christie as a "cannabis sacrament" minister in June of 2000. Today he views Christie as a "Jimmy Swaggart type," referring to the former televangelist who was involved in a high-profile 1988 sex scandal, or an Elmer Gantry, the false prophet described in Sinclair Lewis' 1920s satirical novel.

Is he persuasive enough to make people drink the Kool-Aid? "Near that," Shields said, referring to the late Jim Jones, founder and leader of the People's Temple, and the one responsible for more than 900 Temple members perishing in Jonestown, Guyana in 1978. "I don't think he has much of a moral compass," Shields said of Christie

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Honolulu Residents Don't Want National Recognition

The proposed Hawaii Capital National Heritage Area would cover a 16-square-mile swath of land stretching from Kalihi Street to Punahou Street, from the ocean to the pali: the boundaries of the ancient ahupuaa of Honolulu and Kapalama.

It would be the first of its kind in the state — and one of the first in the Western U.S. — if a bill currently stuck in a U.S. congressional committee is passed. The federal designation would preserve the colorful history of the area and would provide grant funding for various arts, culture and heritage programs in need of help, proponents say.

Why would anyone object to such a thing?

It turns out that some residents and business owners who make their living or make their homes in the impacted area — which includes Chinatown, Downtown, Kakaako, Kalihi, Liliha, Makiki, Nuuanu, Palama, Pauoa and Tantalus — are concerned that the legislation authorizing the designation could create more problems than it solves.

A loose group of opponents have collected their concerns in one place: http://realhawaiicapitalnationalheritageareainfo.com/. The site, launched in May 2010, refutes much of the work of the Hawaii Capital Cultural Coalition, a group established in 2003. The Sustainability/Feasibility Study — a 41-megabyte PDF document — is a key part of the push for the Hawaii Capital National Heritage Area.

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City Council Moves Forward With Fireworks Ban (Snobs)

Those in support of an all out ban said New Years Eve is a recurring nightmare.

“It was a warzone and I was appalled. There was no enforcement. Is this what I am going to experience the next new years if this ban does not go through?,” said Manoa resident Bea Oates.

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Where did $115 million go?

The county did not compile a jobs report for its presentation, but the website Recovery.gov says 71.75 jobs were created on the Big Island with federal stimulus funds.

(That’s $1.6m per job)

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Hawaii County sells $60M worth of 20-year bonds

HILO, Hawaii (AP) — Hawaii County has sold $60 million worth of 20-year bonds with an interest rate of 3.5 percent.

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Maui Aquarium fish bill advances in council

Reportedly, two to four active collectors took 17,000 fish from Maui County waters last year, although (as always) bill proponents say claim the numbers are underreported greatly.

Proponents of the bill said the county had to get involved because Gov. Linda Lingle and legislative leaders have not taken industry-regulatory action via state laws that would impose fish-catch limits, place prohibitions on certain species and establish permit quotas.

Council members asked the collectors and environmentalists to form a task force to hammer out their differences in a second bill on the humane treatment of collected fish.

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Anti-Superferry Protester LaBedz pulls papers to run for Kauai mayor

LIHU‘E — Environmentalist and Kekaha resident Diana LaBedz on Monday pulled papers to challenge Mayor Bernard P. Carvalho Jr. in the September mayoral primary, intends to file papers, and thinks she can unseat the incumbent, she said.

She also says she intends to do it without the aid of campaign signs, which she says are not recyclable and end up in the landfill at campaign’s end.

“I will be grateful if people want to make, post and take down the signs when the election is over, that they be made out of recycled material. Our Kaua‘i island will be thankful,” she said in an e-mail.

LaBedz, a former chemical dependency counselor who advocates decriminalization of marijuana, said she is serious about challenging Carvalho, will file papers as soon as she gets the requisite number of signatures, and thinks she has a chance in the upcoming election, she said in the e-mail.

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