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Thursday, August 12, 2010
August 12, 2010 News Read
By Andrew Walden @ 1:35 PM :: 8126 Views :: Hawaii County News, Agriculture, Maui County News, Congressional Delegation, Honolulu County News, Democratic Party, Hawaii State Government, Republican Party, National News, Development, World News, Hawaii History

Flip-Flop-Flip: Hannemann again refuses to take position on Gay Civil Unions

Time tight for Akaka Bill-but Akaka claims to have the votes

There are enough votes in the U.S. Senate to pass by year's end a bill to treat native Hawaiians like the nation's other indigenous groups.  That's according to Sen. Daniel Akaka's office and the Office of Hawaiian Affairs.  But the legislation would still need to be squeezed into a busy Senate calendar….

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Changes proposed to state land rules: The first revisions in 16 years involve shoreline boundaries and permits

(The secret negotiations over HRS343 are beginning to bear fruit….)

The state is proposing a number of changes and additions to rules in its administration of conservation lands, last updated in 1994:

  • » The shoreline setback line would be established based on a distance from the certified shoreline of 40 feet, plus 70 times the average annual coastal erosion rate. Shoreline setbacks were not defined in the old rules.
  • » Some land management activities on conservation land would be allowed without permits. These would include routine weed control, clearing of understory, planting of rare plants, fence maintenance and clearing sand and silt from stream mouths, canals or drainage pipes.
  • » A number of fees would increase. These would be for board permit applications (from a maximum of $2,000 to $2,500), public hearing fees ($250 to $500), departmental permit applications ($50 to $250) and temporary variance applications ($100 to $250).
  • » Standard conditions for permits would include a rule prohibiting hampering religious practices of native Hawaiians on conservation land. The conditions would also prohibit artificial light from pointing toward the ocean. All exterior lighting must be shielded to "protect the night sky."
  • » Rules would specify that only people with property interest, residency on the land or anyone directly affected by a permit can appeal. Rules now state that "any person" can appeal to the department.

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Debate: Hannemann, Abercrombie bicker over “agenda”

"People want change, they don't want the status quo, they don't want status quo politics, they don't want the old guard leadership," says Abercrombie.

"If he's been in congress for 20 years, been in the public spotlight for 40 years, is he very credible about talking about change?," says Hannemann.

Things got heated when the candidates got to ask each other one question.

Hannemann challenged Abercrombie's record on oil drilling.

"Here we go again, this is a typical campaign move by my opponent, it happens every campaign, we get personal about it," says Abercrombie.

Abercrombie shot back challenging Hannemann to accept more debates.

"Neil I think I'm demonstrating today I'm not afraid to debate you," says Hannemann.

"You're not gonna set the agenda of my campaign just like I don't set the agenda and schedule of your campaign," says Hannemann.

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Abercrombie unable to think of any achievements other than winning elections and showing up

He demonstrated that Wednesday when asked what he was most proud of in his years in public office. He said he believes government is about collaboration, not about bragging. "My proudest achievement is to have the faith of a constituency to occupy office," he said, adding that he may not always have voted correctly or had the best judgment. "I have been so proud to serve and done my best."

RELATED:  Congress.org: "Abercrombie is a follower"

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Democrat Candidates skirt chances to provide specific plans

Taking some questions as opportunities to pass along their oft-repeated talking points, Abercrombie and Hannemann skirted several chances to provide specific plans, including whether they would support standards-based assessments and evaluations of teachers, whether they would redirect state funds that now go to the Hawaii Tourism Authority and other tourism-promotion entities and when, if ever, they disagreed with employee unions. On other issues, the candidates became more specific.

SA: Home developers back Hannemann in Dem. primary

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Caldwell: 'The Number One Job of the City is To Create Jobs for All of Us.'

Acting Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell told a debate audience Tuesday night, "The number one job of the city is to create jobs for all of us."

(One you understand who “us” is, this is a refreshing blast of honesty.)

TFH: Finessing The Tax Increase In An Election Year

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Pittsburgh Fundraiser:  Hannemann campaign, aide agree to pay small fine

The campaign will pay the penalty for failure to amend an organizational report, failure to deposit two contributions within seven days, failure to report a loan and filing an improper disclaimer for a June fundraiser in Pittsburgh.

The agreement was announced Wednesday at a meeting of the state Campaign Spending Commission. Hannemann campaign worker Christine Camp will pay a $100 fine for filing a late fundraiser notice containing an incorrect date.

The Hannemann campaign also acknowledged that someone else signed Hannemann's name on the notice.

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The Hill: Vulnerable Dems support state aid bill

Another Republican who might have been tempted to vote in favor of the bill, Rep. Charles Djou (R-Hawaii), voted "no" and slammed the measure as a "political ploy."

Djou won a May special election in a solidly Democratic district largely because his two challengers split the Democratic vote.

"Why do Hawaii taxpayers have to bailout other states who haven't been as responsible?" asked Djou. "Spending more money is always the easy thing to do, but this amounts to a tax increase."

RELATED: Stimulus: Dems take $708/year from poor families

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US Congressman Djou Condemns N. Korea for Detainment of South Korean Boat

…Meanwhile, the United States has also joined in the efforts to seek the release of the seven South Korean and Chinese fishermen detained by North Korea.

US congressmen Charles Djou has submitted a resolution to urge North Korea to release the crew of the Daeseung 55 a South Korean fishing boat seized by the communist regime while operating in the East Sea on Sunday.

In the resolution filed with the House Committee on Foreign Affairs… Representative Djou condemned Pyeongyang for the detainment of the South Korean fishing ship, as well as, continued provocation by the North Korean military.

The resolution also calls for the North to immediately stop any hostile activity towards South Korea and engage in mutual dialogue to enhance inter-Korean relations and return to the six-party nuclear talks….

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ILind: Brian Schatz is not raking in the bucks from a non-profit sinecure at a Democrat slush-fund, really

Helping Hands Hawaii was started back in 1974 as the Volunteer, Information, and Referral Service.

In 2001, the legislature, under pressure to deal with a growing backlog of needed school repairs, moved to clear the way for public-private partnerships for repair and maintenance. Helping Hands Hawaii was designated to administer a new fund, and to solicit funds and give grants for school repair projects, with an annual independent audit of the funds (see SB493). This took place before Schatz was associated with the organization.

Two years later, in 2003, this responsibility was transferred to a new nonprofit organization, Hawaii 3R’s by SB58.

According to tax returns filed by Helping Hands Hawaii, Schatz took over as president of the group during 2003, as the school repair responsibilities were being shifted over to Hawaii 3R’s. So the implication that Helping Hands Hawaii was somehow shirking its school repair and maintenance responsibilities five years later, in 2008, was totally wrong.

Oh, and the allegation that the organization is administratively top-heavy?

According to its most recent tax return, less than 5% of its $6+ million budget goes to administration and management.

(That’s $300,000/year to distribute the remaining $5.7M from the Leg.  In review. Helping Hands is not a Democrat slush fund.  3R’s is not a Democrat slush fund.  Always watch what they deny.)

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Maui HD 11: Molester associates Bertram and Halperin demand criminals be let out of jail: Bertram also demands more marijuana

Eleventh House District incumbent Rep. Joe Bertram III faced Democratic challengers Johanna Amorin, a former Maui planning commissioner, and new South Maui resident Netra Halperin.

Amorin touted job creation, noting she has her own employment agency and knows how to get people work. Both Halperin and Bertram said they wanted to see prison reform, with a focus on rehabilitation instead of incarceration. Bertram continued to rail against what he views as draconian marijuana laws.

The race against Souki appeared to focus on the former speaker's age rather than his accomplishments. However, Souki said he can still "bring home the bacon" and the Transportation Committee chairman laid out plans to deliver a $4 billion transportation modernization plan with massive highway and harbor projects, all of which would create jobs, he said.

RELATED: Legislative races: Mainland “Gay Victory” money flowing to molester’s buddy Joe Bertram and HB444 sponsor Blake Oshiro

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Republican Dudek stays on ballot: Judge blocks Election Commission from giving Donna Mercado Kim a free ride

The candidate filing deadlines have come and gone and the September primary ballots are at the printer, but the drama continues.

A Circuit Court judge ruled today against the state Office of Elections’ attempt to disqualify a Republican candidate in state Senate District 14 in Moanalua for not filing the required signatures from district voters on his candidate paperwork.

Peter Dudek, a Republican challenging state Sen. Donna Mercado Kim, had 24 signatures validated by the Office of Elections before the candidate filing deadline. He needed 15 valid signatures under the law.

A subsequent review by the Office of Elections, however, found that Dudek only had 14 valid signatures from district voters. The state went to court to disqualify Dudek, but the judge found that the state did not provide sufficient evidence.

(Democratic Party also trying to knock three candidates out of its Primaries.)

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Nishiki is target of rivals at Kula candidates forum

Challengers Don Couch and Norman Vares jumped at a chance to question Nishiki directly - grilling him about the $100,000 loan he accepted from developer Dowling Co., and asking why he has never attended Kihei Community Association meetings.

"Tell us all now how you plan to fool Maui County voters again?" said Couch, who got more votes than Nishiki in South Maui precincts two years ago, but lost to him countywide by 2,002 votes.

Couch said it's not the $100,000 loan he has a problem with, but that Nishiki said one thing and did the opposite.

"You said you would not take money from a developer - and you already had," Couch said. "That is a little bit shibai."

Nishiki responded that he has recently worked out an arrangement with Dowling to make monthly payments on the loan.

A financial statement filed by Nishiki in July reports that the current balance on the loan is now less than $100,000.

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Kenoi: No $100 Aina Lea dinner

HILO -- The county Board of Ethics took Mayor Billy Kenoi's word for it Wednesday and dismissed a complaint alleging the mayor and his top planner failed to report meals worth more than $100 provided by Aina Lea developers.

Kenoi didn't appear at the Ethics Board meeting, but he was represented by Deputy Corporation Counsel Brandon Gonzalez. The conversation was brief.

"Does he feel as if his meal was worth in excess of $100?" asked Ethics Board Chairman John Dill.

Another $100/plate dinner: Billy Kenoi helped Pali Shooter

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3 Big Island courthouses to close

The North Kohala, Hamakua and Kau district courts will close Oct. 1 until further notice. Their cases will be handled in South Kohala District Court and Kona District Court.

The closures resulted from a new state Department of Public Safety rule requiring at least two sheriffs in a courthouse.

The rule was created after a lone deputy sheriff at the Kailua-Kona courthouse was injured last month trying to stop a brawl in Family Court.

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Report: Area unsafe:  PTA visitors Professional protesters speak up about having to sign a safety waiver

More anti-DU bs from the ongoing effort to drive the US military out of Hawaii.  

REALITY:

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