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Saturday, January 08, 2011
January 8, 2011 News Read
By Andrew Walden @ 1:48 PM :: 9314 Views :: Hawaii County News, Agriculture, Maui County News, Congressional Delegation, Honolulu County News, Democratic Party, Hawaii State Government, Republican Party, National News, Development

Stalemate Broken: House Republican Caucus backs Calvin Say for Speaker

Rep. Marumoto Bill to mandate DNA collection from arrested suspects

After brother pleads guilty in Ponzi scheme, Hawaii County prosecutor announces plans to resign, move to Maui

"I've been contemplating this for awhile," Kimura said. "I've been in public service for over 30 years, and I want to take some time to be with my family. I have an elderly mother on Maui who I need to take care of."

Kimura is known for his low-key (lazy, shiftless) administrative style. He has not personally tried a case since elected prosecutor in 1992. He said his decision to retire is not directly related-to his older brother Lloyd, who recently (ie two days ago) plead guilty in state and federal courts to charges stemming from a Ponzi scheme he ran on Maui that reportedly bilked investors of $23 million.

(Getting that one line into paragraph 8 of this story is quite an accomplishment for the HTH and WHT.  Usually these so-called newspapers don’t say anything about the local elected officials.  For instance HTH and WHT readers have never seen a single word about Mayor Billy Kenoi participating in the 1000-person fundraiser for Mafia murderer Malu Motta.  But I digress.)

The case of Peter Kema Jr., who was 6 when he went missing in 1997, was reclassified by police as a murder and sent to prosecutors in 2000. Kema's father, Peter Kema Sr., told police and the media that he gave the boy to a woman on Oahu he called "Aunty Rose Makuakane." "Peter Boy" has not been seen since and police say there's no evidence of the woman's existence.
"It's still an open investigation, but I don't think it'll go to court while I'm still here," Kimura said.

REALITY: Robert Iwamoto trust sued over Maui Ponzi scheme

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More Atheist garbage: Activist Questions Church Waivers

A local activist is claiming the City and County of Honolulu is violating the state Constitution by waiving garbage collection fees for hundreds of churches on Oahu.

"We're not asking for the city to collect (100 years of) back fees, what we'd really like is for the city to just acknowledge that we have a violation and to make the corrections necessary to make sure that it doesn't perpetuate into the future,” said Mitchell Kahle, president of Hawaii Citizens for the Separation of State and Church.  (He’s so very generous.  Notice how he speaks as a dictator?)

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UH Profs dropped $100/each to embarrass their profession by electing The Abercrombie

Duane Stevens, president of the 4,000-member University of Hawaii Professional Assembly, said the union spent $100 per member to elect Neil Abercrombie governor.

Stevens made the comment at an UHPA-sponsored faculty workshop at UH Manoa this morning.

Abercrombie is a UH grad and former instructor, and wife Nancie Caraway is a UH employee.

(Perhaps they did not realize that all of the psychoses rampant on the UH Manoa campus would become public knowledge with Abercrombie and Caraway in Governor’s mansion?)

REALITY: The Segregated Sisterhood of Neil Abercrombie and Nancie Caraway

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Ed Board Appointees Could Take Seats By Summer

Gov. Neil Abercrombie's first appointments to the Hawaii State Board of Education could be confirmed by summer, Senate Education Chairwoman Jill Tokuda said in a Twitter town hall meeting Friday.

(This means the new board would be installed AFTER negotiations with the HSTA are completed.)

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Senator pulls out of DHHL lawsuit

Newly appointed state Sen. Malama Solomon is withdrawing from a lawsuit she and other Native Hawaiian homesteaders filed in 2009 against the state Department of Hawaiian Home Lands.
Solomon, appointed last month by Gov. Neil Abercrombie to fill the 1st Senate District seat, is one of 17 plaintiffs seeking to force the DHHL to install a roughly $300,000 water system to serve their leased lots in Honokaia.
A longtime rancher, Solomon said Friday that she still believes the DHHL has been negligent by not furnishing water to (politically connected) lessees who need it for their ranches (even though it rains 100” a year in Hamakua).

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Lanai wind farm term agreement negotiated

John Ornellas, a board member with Lanaians for Sensible Growth, expressed skepticism about the benefits package for Lanai residents and the chances that Castle & Cooke would follow through with its promises.

Ornellas said he was familiar with what's being offered to Lanai residents, and "it's not enough."

"There's a lot of ifs," but not much concrete, he said late Friday afternoon.

Ornellas said the agreement contains promises about steady employment for Lanai residents, but Castle & Cooke laid off three longtime employees Friday.

"What does that tell you?" he asked, rhetorically. "And what about the 200 (people) laid off in the past couple of years?"

Ornellas said Lanai residents have a problem with Castle & Cooke "making commitments and not following through."

Robin Kaye, spokesman for the community group Friends of Lana'i, said the companies' agreement is "almost insulting" to the people of Lanai.

He said Castle & Cooke stands to make $180 million a year in power generation, and offering only $1 million to residents would be unfair when a quarter of the island would be "permanently disfigured" by 170 turbines.

"It's not a fair trade," he said. Having a quarter of Lanai provide 10 percent of Oahu's electricity "makes us an industrial park for Oahu."

Kaye said the power prices estimated by Hawaiian Electric are too low because they are based on today's prices and not those three years from now when the project would get under way.

The low prices are "just something floating out there," he said.

SA:  Deal for Lanai electricity reached

CB: Another Day, Another 20-Year Power Purchase Agreement

REALITY: Wind Energy's Ghosts

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Reported bid for Hawaiian Electric raises questions of conflicts, ethics

Today’s stories by Rob Perez, who gathered reactions to the idea, and Andrew Gomes, who provides an excellent bit of background on Roald Marth, the key figure, are both excellent. I appreciated their quick work in pulling together a skeptical view of the announcement.

So far, a real bid from this group seems unlikely.

Although Marth refers to himself as a venture capitalist, I spent a long time online yesterday in a fruitless search for anything to confirm the self-description. A search of various investment reports filed with the SEC over the past four years didn’t turn up any mention of Marth.

I also did a quick check of local real estate records and failed to find any property in Hawaii owned by in his name.

He is listed as officer of two companies incorporated in Delaware, including Kuokoa Inc, the company involved in the proposed takeover, which was registered to do business in Hawaii on September 23, 2010, and Nuro Inc., which was registered on March 10, 2010.

Both companies list their principle business address as a residential apartment in the high-priced Hokua at 1288 Ala Moana Condominium. The apartment is owned by a Honolulu neurosurgeon and orthodontist, real estate records show.

Marth made news in November HECO engineer Mina Brinkopf, described as Marth’s girlfriend, displayed her $175,000 Tesla electric roadster, reportedly a gift from him.

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Hawaiian Electric Takeover Spurs Angry E-mails (Green energy descends into farce)

Civil Beat posted a story Thursday night on plans by a newly formed Kuokoa Inc. to buy Hawaii Electric Industries.

Not long after, there was a testy e-mail exchange between Kuokoa CEO Roald Marth and Pono Shim, president and CEO of Enterprise Honolulu.

In the exchange, Marth disputed that he offered Shim one million shares valued at "$1000 per share" to join Kuokoa's board of directors. Shim responds, saying Marth had "pissed off a real small time Hawaiian" and suggests that his kupuna had told him that Marth wasn't good for Hawaii.

Copied in the e-mail chat are Kuokoa Chairman Richard Ha, Enterprise Honolulu Managing Director Mark McGuffie, "The Blue Economy" (zero emissions) author Gunter Pauli, electric car enthusiast Aaron Landry and Civil Beat reporter-Host Nanea Kalani.

SA: Plan to buy HEI draws skepticism

SA: Man behind HEI purchase plan once was motivational speaker

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HNN: Hawaiian Electric “we have nothing to date”

The company, in a filing Friday to the Securities & Exchange Commission, confirmed it had been approached by Marth, but said that contact so far consisted of a single email transmitted late Thursday.

"We have a fiduciary obligation to our shareholders, customers and community to consider any valid proposal to purchase our company," HEI said. "If we receive a formal proposal, we will evaluate it, but we have nothing to date."

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Sabato on 2012: Dan Akaka “Safe for Now”

Hawaii: Democratic Sen. Daniel Akaka is 86 years old, but this is Hawaii where respect for senior politicians is part of cultural tradition. Many observers believe that Akaka will retire, but there has been no official word on this yet. The Republicans will have a strong candidate in former Gov. Linda Lingle, if she chooses to run. Lingle has indicated that she will at least consider it. If Akaka retires, the Democratic bench is very strong, and any Democrat will benefit from the massive percentage of the vote that President Obama will undoubtedly secure in his native state.

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New Adjutant General Takes Command of Hawaii National Guard

A Transfer of Authority ceremony between outgoing Adjutant General (TAG), Maj. Gen. Robert G.F. Lee and the incoming, Maj. Gen. Darryll. D.M. Wong, will take place on Sunday, January 9th, 2:00 p.m. at Kalaeloa. Governor Neil Abercrombie recently named Maj. Gen. Wong as the replacement for the retiring Maj. Lee, who has been TAG for eight years.

The Hawaii State Adjutant General is a part of the governor’s cabinet and is the Director of the State’s Department of Defense (DoD). State DoD has five departments: Hawaii Army National Guard, Hawaii Air National Guard, State Civil Defense, Office of Veterans Services and the Youth Challenge Academy.

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Feds Investigate Alleged $1 Million Embezzlement by a Hawaii Bank of America Employee

Federal authorities are investigating a loan officer fired from the Bank of America’s Honolulu office last month for allegedly stealing at least $1 million of customer funds to repay personal gambling debts, HawaiiReporter has learned.

Michael Ho Kim was discharged from the bank shortly before Christmas and his whereabouts are now unknown.

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Fire Guts Controversial Shark Tour Boat

Some residents said the fire seemed suspicious.

“It was a shock to everybody, because now who are they going to blame? We want to know if it was arson, or it was an electrical fire,” said north shore resident Gabby Kahaulelio. "Are they going to blame the guys that did the protest here? They going to blame the homeless over there? We don't know,” Kahaulelio said.

Fire officials said the cause is under investigation.

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