Associated Builders and Contractors Endorses Linda Lingle for U.S. Senate
Atheist Extortion, Blackmail forced Marc Alexander to Resign
Abercrombie's Homeless Coordinator Suddenly Quits
HAWSCT: "Best Efforts" Are Not Good Enough In Reapportionment. But...
AARP Calls for Reform of Hawaii Long Term Care
Berg Proposes Measures to Remove Uninsured Motorists
ALEC Economist to Address Highlights and Lowlights of Hawaii Policies
Inouye’s Pirate Fishing Bill Cited as Example of Over-Criminalization
Presidents Bush, Clinton to Address Opening of 2012 Hawaii Robotics Season
Rail: Feds Demand More Local Taxes Before Committing Federal Funds
SA: FTA Regional Administrator Leslie T. Rogers warned the city in a Dec. 29 letter that the financial plan for the rail project must be "further strengthened" before the FTA will consider committing up to $1.55 billion in federal funding to the project.
Rogers specifically questioned some contingency plans the city has offered as ways to cope with any unexpected cash shortfalls or cost overruns for the rail project.
One strategy the city proposed if extra money is needed is to extend the half-percent excise tax that provides most of the funding for the rail project….
Borreca: Cayetano run for mayor would be a game-changer
read … Federal transit panel puts city on the spot over funding for rail
Honolulu to Feds: OK Rail Work Or Costs Rise $100M
CB: "The consequences of LONP 2 not being approved will have serious impacts to the overall project budget, and in particular, poses the most significant impact on the project contingency," Hamayasu wrote in the request to FTA Regional Administrator Leslie Rogers. "HART analysis indicates that the total delay impact could be at least $110.2 million if LONP 2 is not authorized in January 2012."
ILind: Do rail proponents necessarily believe in rail?
read … Yeah, Like Congress is Gonna Listen
After Abercrombie Presents Budget, CoR Suddenly Chops 3% off Projected growth Rate
The Hawaii Council on Revenues has downgraded its general fund revenue growth forecast for the current fiscal year to 11.5 percent.
The change represents a sharp drop from the group's projected 14.5 percent growth in September1.
Not everyone on the council was satisfied with the projection.
After the meeting, council member Marilyn M. Niwao, state director of the Hawaii Association of Public Accountants, said she thought the downgraded projection is still “too optimistic.”
(How this works. Abercrombie needed the bonkers 14.5% projection to justify his bloated budget. Now the CoR’s reduced revenue projections are needed to stampede the Legislature into legalizing gambling, raising taxes, or both. There will be further cuts during the session.)
SA: Lower revenue forecast puts crimp in governor's budget plan
Full Text: Statement from Governor Abercrombie on the Latest Economic Forecast
read … The latest CoR Shell Game
Obama’s Military Cuts Already Being Felt in Hawaii
The Navy decided to take away some of the work at Pearl Harbor Naval Shipyard associated with a 10-year, billion-dollar cruiser modification program and shift it to the West Coast, Carey said.
"The program was originally targeted for Hawaii," Carey said. Rising fuel costs and federal budget pressures "may have resulted in the Navy choosing to move some of its work to a location where costs are lower," he said.
Patrick Sullivan, founder of Honolulu-based Oceanit Laboratories Inc., which does business with the military, said the defense cuts are "a big worry."
"Starting at Pacific Command, they are going to make adjustments in their budget, and that is going to reverberate through the entire (defense) community. They (the military) are going to be saving money on every single thing that they can," Sullivan said.
The high costs of a planned move of 8,000 Marines from Okinawa to Guam are bogged down and being re-examined by Congress. A lot of Hawaii companies invested heavily in the Guam move, Sullivan said.
"So a lot of those companies that mobilized to do that suffered," he said.
UKI: Obama: Now that I have Burned the Treasury Down, the US can no longer fight the world's battles
SA: U.S. right to focus on Asia
read … Thanks, Obama
Abercrombie: Race to the Top Has Nothing to do with HSTA Contract
CB: He also said that Race to the Top “has nothing to do” with the collective bargaining agreement — even though teacher evaluations and performance pay (both Race to the Top promises) legally must be negotiated, because they change the conditions of employment.
Abercrombie went on to blame the internal workings of HSTA for the state’s recent national embarrassment over the grant fiasco.
Easy to see why Abercrombie is losing popularity among teachers….
CB: Abercrombie: HSTA ‘Attack’ On Labor Board Member Was ‘Sexism’ “But if somebody wants me to do all the negotiating, that’s all right with me. No, it’s not all right with me. That’s not the way it’s supposed to be done. I can’t run the day-to-day affairs of the schools. I don’t want to. That’s why I have an appointed Board of Education.”
Listen to Interview: Town Square - January 5 2012
read … Abercrombie blames HSTA
Liver Patients In Fear After Closure Of Hawaii Liver Center
KITV: Hawaii Medical Center East officially closed Thursday, shutting down the Liver Center, a clinic that provided life-sustaining treatments for many patients with cirrhosis, Hepatitis and liver cancer.
State senator Josh Green, also a medical doctor, chaired a briefing at the capitol to find out what will happen to liver patients in Hawaii.
"If they don't have care, patients with liver disease can die," Green warned.
SA: HMC closes Liliha hospital
Read … Patients Could Die
'Vog,' Volcanic Smog, Adds To Oahu Emergency Room Crowding
AP: Medical officials say patients affected by volcanic smog are taxing Oahu's emergency rooms after the recent closures of two hospitals.
read … More HMC Closure Backlash
Honolulu Council May Try To Take Over Water Board
CB: Budget Committee Chair Ann Kobayashi told Civil Beat last week she's already been working with city lawyers to bring the water board under the control of the Council and Mayor Peter Carlisle. They're crafting a resolution that would give voters a chance to approve a Charter amendment in the 2012 election in November.
CB: Council Sends Mixed Messages on Semi-Autonomy
Related: Djou: Honolulu Board of Water Supply is out of control
read … Honolulu Council May Try To Take Over Water Board
Civil Beat Influence Poll — Questionnaire, Toplines and Crosstab
CB: Below are the full questionnaire and the results of the poll.
Here are the stories and editorial Civil Beat published based on the poll:
Civil beat influence poll — questionnaire
read … Polling Data
Rolling the Hawaiians: OHA’s Namuo Will Work for Crook Waihee
Former Gov. John Waihee chair of the Native Hawaiian Roll Commission, announced today the appointment of Clyde Namuo as the commission’s executive director.
Namuo is the former CEO of the Office of Hawaiian Affairs. He will work without compensation but be assisted by Raynette Suganuma-Carlson, who formerly assisted with the Hawaiian Sovereignty Elections Council and most recently with the Native Hawaiian Legal Corporation.
Link: State Sues to Get Back $39M Looted from Graves by John Waihee, Reservation for a Broken Trust?
read … OHA’s latest Rip off of Hawaiian Assets
Geothermal: Politicians Squabble over How to Divide Spoils
SA: The panel recommended, among other things, that the state "make the allocation of geothermal royalties more transparent to show how benefits come back to the community."
The royalties are divided three ways with 50 percent going to the state Department of Land and Natural Resources, 30 percent to Hawaii County and 20 percent to the Office of Hawaiian Affairs.
Some state lawmakers have pushed for greater oversight of how the proceeds from the royalties are spent. The Senate last session approved a resolution calling for a state audit of the geothermal leasing and royalty program.
read … Geothermal
Hanabusa: Jeff Stone’s Pet Congresswoman Hopes to Stop Kneeling Before Wealthy
Hanabusa: “In 2012, I hope Congress will work past the bitter partisanship and election-year games to make progress on long-term solutions to our nation’s problems. I hope that we can build prosperity in America on the strength of working Americans, and not by kneeling to the wealthiest and most powerful few.”
read … Short-term memory loss?
Case Holding $500/plate Fundraiser at Pacific Club
Case is hosting a fundraiser at the Pacific Club in Honolulu on Thursday evening. The Democrat is running for the U.S. Senate seat that Daniel Akaka is vacating.
read … $500
State Ag Department Supports Hoopili
CB: Russell Kokubun, chair of Hawaii’s Department of Agriculture, told the state Land Use Commission Thursday that the agency decided not to oppose D.R. Horton's proposed Hoopili development after meeting with the company and getting a commitment to foster agriculture within the development.
The Hoopili community would include 11,750 homes, five schools and space for shops and restaurants.
Kokubun's support is a reversal from his predecessor, Sandra Kunimoto, who testified against Hoopili in 2009.
read … Kokubun
DLIR Creating Positions
The Hawaii Department of Labor and Industrial Relations is looking to immediately fill six positions in the Hawaii Occupational Safety and Health Division and hire more later this month.
The positions were eliminated in 2008 when the division experienced a reduction in force from 39 to 16 employees due to statewide budget cuts.
read … Your tax dollars at work
Savio rejects Hunt’s Iroquois Point Counteroffer
PBN: The price was accepted, but Hunt’s counteroffer placed so many restrictions on the deal that Savio walked away, he said.
Meanwhile, the hui — which is comprised of local individuals and businesses that Savio declined to name — would still like to purchase the subdivision and sell the single-family homes, duplexes and townhouses as affordable housing.
The group has raised $94 million for the deal, Savio said. That, coupled with a preferred equity piece and assuming the existing debt, would complete the financing, he said.
“We’re still going to put our offer in, in the hopes that the other side does not reach agreement,” Savio said.
read … Savio
Company Positions itself to Profit from Anti-Plastic Hype
Metabolix’s biodegradable plastic completely breaks down in seawater but is up to four times more expensive than traditional plastic.
read … Bet they funded the hypesters
Wisconsin Homosexuals Allegedly Loot Veterans Fund to pay for Hawaii Vacation, One Accused of Child Enticement
WEAU: The complaint against Russell said he stole more than $10,000 from a private entity he controlled that was supposed to benefit military veterans. The complaint said he instead used the money in part to pay for Caribbean and Hawaiian vacations.
Russell also is charged with taking $3,000 from the campaign fund of Milwaukee County Board candidate Chris Kujawa in 2007 and stealing $550 from the campaign fund of county board candidate Larry Spicer in 2010….
The criminal complaint against Kavanaugh said he embezzled at least $42,232 from the Military Order of the Purple Heart between 2006 and 2009….
The third person arrested Thursday was Brian Pierick, 48, who is Russell's partner. Pierick was charged with felony child enticement and exposing his genitals. He had worked as an office operations assistant at the Department of Public Instruction dealing with education for homeless children and youth since October, but was fired Thursday. Court documents did not list an attorney for Pierick. (After the trial, maybe they can come here and get hitched!)
read … Child Endangerment
Hawaii Lawyer Convicted as Homosexual Child Molester Denied Readmission to the DC Bar
Legal Times: Moore, who now practices law in Colorado and Hawaii, did not return a request for comment. He joined the D.C. Bar in 1974 and practiced as a solo practitioner; his work included taking assignments as a court-appointed lawyer in District of Columbia Superior Court for juvenile clients.
According to the board report, a 16-year-old client of Moore’s told police in 1979 that Moore had engaged in sexual relations with him. Moore was eventually charged in the early 1980s with several counts of criminal sexual conduct in Virginia and the District. He was found guilty of molesting a child in Virginia and pleaded guilty to similar charges in one case in the District.
Moore spent a year in jail and moved to Colorado after he was released in 1983. He worked as a paralegal until 1991. In 1985, he applied for admission to the Colorado Bar and, according to the board report, failed to fully disclose the details of what had happened in the District. He described his convictions, but, the board wrote, he “failed to disclose that all of the charges involved teenagers whom he had met through his legal practice in the juvenile division of D.C. Superior Court."
He was admitted to the Colorado Bar in 1990. In 2002, Moore applied to take the Hawaii Bar exam. Again, the board accused of him of failing to disclose details of his misconduct and convictions. For instance, when asked to list his previous residences, Moore did not write that he had been in jail from 1980 to 1983. The Hawaii Supreme Court denied Moore’s application, finding that he had failed to provide all of the requested information.
read … But he practices law in Hawaii
15% cap starting to slow PV growth in some areas
PBN: Although most of the state still remains well below the 15 percent limitation for the amount of energy allowed to be supplied to any given circuit by solar power, three areas on Maui — Kahului, Makawao and Ulumalu — are nearing that point.
read … 15% cap starting to slow PV growth in some areas
Maui Police Department computer analyst charged with impersonating officer, other crimes
AP: A computer analyst for the Maui Police Department has been arrested for allegedly impersonating an officer and other crimes.
Maui police say Charles Barrett was charged with second-degree unauthorized entry into a motor vehicle, harassment, reckless driving and second-degree impersonating a law enforcement officer.
read … Maui PD
Kona coffee farmers push for law requiring package labels to show origin of beans in blends
AP: If the association is successful an example of a package label would read, “90 percent Panamanian coffee, 10 percent Kona coffee.”
read … Coffee
Hawaii Farmers Union recognized by national union
AP: The Hawaii Farmers Union has more than 300 members. Many also belong to the Hawaii Farm Bureau, the Hawaii Aquaculture and Aquaponics Association and other local, farm associations
read … HFU
Court Interpreter Applicants Wanted for Orientation Workshop
Applications are now being accepted for the next state court interpreter orientation workshop to be held on each of the major islands in February and March. Completion of the two-day workshop is one of the mandatory requirements of becoming a court interpreter for the Hawaii State Judiciary.
read … News Release