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Wednesday, August 18, 2010
August 18, 2010 News Read
By Andrew Walden @ 2:44 PM :: 6096 Views :: Hawaii County News, Agriculture, Maui County News, Congressional Delegation, Honolulu County News, Democratic Party, Hawaii State Government, Republican Party, National News, Development

Shapiro: Politicians (Hannemann, Caldwell) need to get over the plantation-era bigotry

…the plantation era in local politics ended 55 years ago, and it's about time our elder statesmen got over the class bigotry and inspired others to follow. (We are rich progressives.  We are enlightened, conscious, and progressive.   You can trust us.)

Until then, Case has advice for dealing with candidates who cross the line: "Watch for it, vote against it."

(More self-serving twaddle from the Abercrombie camp.)

RELATED: Compare and Decide: Did Mufi blunder?

TOTALLY RELATED: Ed Case -- "Election '10: Beyond The Machine"

DANGEROUSLY RELATED: SPLC: Prejudice in Paradise, Hawaii Has a Racism Problem

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Embattled State Sheriffs Grilled By Lawmakers (Department lacks sufficient handcuffs)

In her audit, Higa wrote that the situation has become downright dangerous. "The sheriffs' poor leadership has led to a division that may be a risk to the public it is supposed to protect," she wrote.

The audit pointed out the sheriffs don't have enough handcuffs and restraints, and not enough deputy sheriffs to guard all of the state's courtrooms. …

The department said it has only one person to do training in the 317 member department.

KHON: State sheriffs division stretched beyond the limit

HNN:  Sheriffs say they're woefully under-funded and demand for service has grown

SA: Sheriffs hampered by budget, officials say

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Teachers prevail in back-pay case  (25,000 teachers ripped off by DoE since 1996 and HSTA did nothing)

An attorney for the substitutes said yesterday that back pay for about 10,000 teachers affected by the decision could top $30 million.

The case stems from a 2002 complaint from Maui substitute teacher David Garner, who claimed that the DOE violated a 1996 state law pegging pay for substitute teachers to rates for Class II teachers -- full-time instructors who have bachelor's degrees but lack advanced training. Between 1996 and 2005, pay for substitute teachers increased just 11 percent, compared with 40 percent for Class II teachers.

According to Alston, the Supreme Court's decision will also have some bearing on a separate but similar class-action lawsuit brought by 15,000 part-time teachers because their salaries are based on substitute teacher pay. The lawsuit for the part-time teachers has been put on hold by the Circuit Court pending the resolution of the substitute teacher case.

(What does this say about union power in Hawaii???  The unions’ power is all about manipulating politics, not about standing up for the members.  The HSTA can shift electoral outcomes, but 25,000 teachers were being ripped off for 15 years and they did NOTHING.)

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State Loses $240 Million on Controversial Securities

The state lost $240 million of its $1 billion investment in securities that it now can't sell, lawmakers learned Tuesday.

The state took a writedown of an estimated $140 million in the fiscal year ending June 30, 2010, according to Director of the State Budget and Finance Department Georgina Kawamura, who testified at a Senate Ways and Means Hearing on Tuesday. The previous fiscal year, the state took a hit of about $100 million.

The writedowns are from controversial state investments known as student-loan-backed auction-rate securities, or SLARS.

RELATED:  UH Manoa activist sold Hawaii controversial Student Loan Bonds

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Testifiers seek hold on bag ban ordinance: Say clearer rules, information on enforcement, more time needed

WAILUKU - Holding a Komoda stick doughnut in a clear plastic bag, bakery worker Earl Lamadora had a request Tuesday during a public hearing to discuss the county's implementation of a new plastic bag reduction ordinance.  (Imagine having to ask government for permission to use a bag.)

He asked if Maui County officials would make an exception and allow Komoda Store & Bakery to continue to use another type of plastic bag for its pastries when the ordinance goes into effect next year.

"What is more questionable, the bag for the vegetables? Or the bag for the doughnuts?" Lamadora asked.

Other testifiers told county officials that they want clearer rules, more information about enforcement, more public education and more time before the ordinance goes into effect.

Under the plastic bag ordinance, nonreusable bags would be allowed for items such as meat, poultry, seafood, produce, dry cleaning and some prescription drugs.

But Lamadora asked if the bakery could continue to use a different type of bag, in the bakery's case, a small white thin plastic bag (smaller than the allowable produce, meat and poultry bags) that store employees use to give out small pastries.

If an exception cannot be made, he said, the bakery would need to look for other ways to give out small pastries. He added that the bakery's costs would climb, and consumers would face price increases.  (And what about the EIS???  see LINK)

REALITY: Save the Plastic Bag

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3500 rally for Abercrombie in Hilo

Sometimes he would use a double wave, or a double shaka, for those in the bleachers he couldn't greet personally. Abercrombie spent 20 minutes in the crowd, working his way through the hundreds waiting for food like a salmon swimming upriver.  (Sense any bias here?)

REALITY: Larry Mehau supporting Neil Abercrombie

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Hawaii Sierra Club endorsing Hanabusa, Hirono and Hooser (triple albatross)

HONOLULU (AP) - The Sierra Club's Hawaii chapter is backing Colleen Hanabusa in the 1st Congressional District race and Gary Hooser in the contest for lieutenant governor. The 6,000-member group announced the endorsements Tuesday.

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SA: 3 Democratic candidates differ on taxes and gambling

The winner of the Sept. 18 primary will face Republican Chris Baron in the Nov. 2 general election….

(then 17 paragraphs about the Dems, followed by…)

All three Democratic candidates support civil unions, while Baron opposes them.

Baron, 41, is serving his third elected term on the Kuliouou-Kalani Iki Neighborhood Board.

He has worked at the state Department of Business, Economic Development and Tourism since 2007, including as a special assistant for international relations and a renewable-energy planner.

Baron formerly worked as a foreign service officer at the China desk at the U.S. State Department.

(The Star-Advertiser talks extensively about the positions and background of the three Democrats running for HD18—the seat previously held by Lyla “Islam day” Berg .  Given short shrift?  The Republican, of course.)

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UH ranks as 159th best in annual U.S. News list

The university's flagship Manoa campus is the 159th-best school in the nation out of 262 rated, placed in Tier 1 of the annual U.S. News & World Report Best Colleges list.

UH-Manoa's programs have been recognized for excellence in more specific listings. U.S. News & World Report ranked the College of Education 50th in its Best Graduate Schools program earlier this year.

The university's Shidler College of Business undergraduate program ranked 19th in International Business in the publication's 2009 Best Colleges list.

(Too bad the Univ as a whole is being held back by other low-quality liberal arts departments infested with pseudo-intellectual academic Marxist activists masquerading as perfessers.)

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Hawaii's state budget deficit violates constitution (not exactly…)

The state constitution requires a balanced budget, but no one gets penalized when it is not balanced.  "I'm not sure what the framers of the constitution had in mind when they put that in," said committee chair Donna Mercado Kim. (They meant to keep a check on Sen Kim.)

The state would have finished FY 2010 in deeper debt if it had not deferred medicaid payments, delayed tax refunds, and other payments until after the fiscal year ended June 30. Those payments will be absorbed in the 2011 budget.

CB: State Violates Balanced-Budget Requirement (ooops)

ILind: Charges of constitutional violations appear off-base

The constitution addresses the budget, not the actual, end of the year financial picture. The BUDGET. “Budget” is clearly different from “actual”. (Duh!)

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Hawaii judges’ financial disclosures now available online

What prompted the comment today is my discovery that the financial disclosure statements filed by state judges are now available to the public online via the Judiciary’s website.

While ostensibly public, these used to be closely guarded by the Supreme Court Clerk. Anyone wishing to examine a judge’s disclosure had to sign a form and the judge would be notified. As you can imagine, this was enough to discourage most attorneys from taking a peek.

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Indians Make U.S. Take Out the Trash

TOPPENISH, Wash.—Washington's Yakama Indian tribe has a bone to pick with the federal government over a plan to import thousands of tons of Hawaiian garbage to its ancestral hunting grounds.

Tribal chairman Harry Smiskin is one of more than a dozen tribal heads expected Tuesday in Seattle, where President Barack Obama will try to help embattled incumbent Patty Murray of Washington hold her Senate seat with a campaign fund raiser. Pacific Northwest tribal leaders, with a number of issues on their agendas, are paying $500 a plate for the ear of a president Mr. Smiskin says has let Indians down.

AP: Federal government withdraws trash shipping permit

read more 

 

Residents to protest land sold to 'Iolani  

The community association has hired a law firm to battle for their "right of first refusal," saying the previous landowner, Lum Yip Kee Ltd., should have given residents the opportunity to buy the land before selling it to 'Iolani for $23 million in June 2009.

The land lies beneath nine apartment buildings that house 250 to 300 units surrounding Laau Street, a horseshoe-shaped street makai of Date Street, next to the campus.

Leases for all the units, including owner-occupied ones, will expire in December 2012….

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GOP reveals midterm blueprint

The GOP blueprint for winning control of the House is rapidly coming into focus, with the National Republican Congressional Committee readying a $22 million TV ad blitz aimed at a handful of powerful, long-serving incumbents and several dozen of the most junior members of the Democratic majority.

POLITICO has learned that the Republican campaign arm will invest in 41 districts around the nation in its first wave of television commercial reservations — a target list that ranges from powerful veterans such as House Budget Committee Chairman John Spratt of South Carolina and Rep. Chet Edwards of Texas, an Appropriations Committee cardinal, to endangered freshmen legislators including Reps. Alan Grayson of Florida, Betsy Markey of Colorado and Harry Teague of New Mexico.

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Big Island voters won't decide on referendums

HILO, Hawaii (AP) A Big Island conservative group is abandoning efforts to have voters decide before individual freedoms are curtailed or taxes are raised.

Conservative Forum for Hawaii President Walter Moe says the group wasn't able to turn in about 13,500 signatures in time to get the question on this November's ballot. Instead, Moe will try again for the 2012 election.

(Walter Moe worked on behalf of the unsuccessful County Council Dist 5 campaign of Paul LeMahieu’s former squeeze, DoE/PREL contractor Kaniu Stocksdale, in 2006 and 2008.) 

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