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Thursday, August 27, 2009
August 27, 2009 News Read
By Andrew Walden @ 11:39 AM :: 8364 Views

Hawaii visitor arrivals up 1.3% — but their spending drops 12.4%

Visitors spent an average of $150 per person per day in July, down from $176 in July 2008. Total spending by air visitors for the first seven months of 2009 decreased by $1.1 billion, or 16 percent from year-to-date 2008, to $5.8 billion.  (SB version: Visitor arrivals take upward turn)


Airline seats to Isles forecast to fall 2.1%

Big losses are likely in the second half, raising the possibility of more Airline bankruptcies ahead

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Honolulu police chief says aloha to job, but may go into politics

Boisse Correa concluded five years as Honolulu's police chief and 39 years on the force yesterday, saying he may reappear on the public scene as a politician or in some other government role.  ...The Honolulu Police Commission in May opted to not give Correa a contract extension and decided instead to look for a new chief.

"I was nearly on the plane to Washington, D.C., to meet J. Edgar Hoover when (former Police Chief) Francis Keala (click the link) called and told me to stay here," Correa said.

Keala would become a friend and mentor to him.

After earning a master's degree, Correa considered leaving the police department to become a children's social worker. But again, Keala talked him out of the idea.

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FLASHBACK: New Police Chief Orders Break Up of Real Life Superhero 'Batman and Robin' Team
By Malia Zimmerman, 9/7/2004

...Hanagami, a brilliant and ruthless police major with the Honolulu Police Department, and Lee, a courageous and methodical deputy prosecutor in charge of white-collar crime investigations for the Honolulu City Prosecutor, have traditionally been supported by their superiors. That includes the recently resigned police chief, Lee Donohue, and Honolulu City Prosecutor Peter Carlisle.

But that support fell away last week with the recent appointment of new Honolulu Police Chief Boisse Correa, a well-connected Democrat, employed by the Honolulu Police Department for more than three decades.

The first major move by Correa was to confidentially contact the prosecutor to tell him he is breaking up the "Batman and Robin" team -- ordering Hanagami to drop all investigations of politicians and their pundits (all Democrats) and to focus on technology-related crimes. There was no public announcement -- just a quiet killing of the alliance.

Correa’s decision comes in the midst of a massive investigation into the campaign and administration of Honolulu Mayor Jeremy Harris and reportedly on the brink of their case against high-ranking officials in his administration.....

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'Time running out' for Micronesians

Less than a week before the state cuts back on health care benefits in Hawai'i to some 7,500 adult Micronesians who are part of the Compact of Free Association, many of those affected are worried and trying to persuade the state to reconsider.

Of particular concern are services for Micronesians who are on dialysis and chemotherapy, which Raed said will end Monday.

"Time's running out," she said. "People's lives are at stake. They'll die."

Tomorrow state Rep. John Mizuno, chairman of the Human Services Committee, will call on Gov. Linda Lingle and the state Department of Human Services to postpone implementing the new Basic Health Hawaii program.

That plan would save the state $15 million but limits monthly services to 12 outpatient doctor visits, 10 hospital days, six mental health visits, three procedures and emergency medical and dental care, said Mizuno, D-30th, (Kamehameha Heights, Kalihi Valley, Fort Shafter). It does not allow for "life saving" dialysis or chemotherapy treatments.

About 100 Pacific Islanders receive dialysis and another 120 to 160 rely on chemotherapy under the current program, Mizuno said.

(Too bad the HGEA doesn't accept furloughs, eh?)

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Libraries go for furloughs, not closures

The Hawai'i Public Library System may have to close some library branches intermittently and substantially pare back public service hours, but no libraries would be permanently closed, according to a $5.7 million budget reduction plan before the state Board of Education.

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Garbage shipment dispute settled

The agreement ends a yearlong stalemate between the city and Hawaiian Waste Systems LLC, which will ship 100,000 tons of municipal solid waste a year to the Mainland for $99 a ton.  The agreement is for the next three years, or less if the third boiler at the city's waste-to-energy H-Power facility is completed before then.

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Pearl Harbor, Hickam to merge

The two bases are combining a lot of services, offices and departments that will produce one hybrid entity: Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam

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Audit of Hawaii County Public Works just completed

Public Works officials have about three weeks to respond to the audit, Schrandt said. Then the audit goes to the County Council and it, and Schrandt's recommendations, become public.  (Should be amusing.  Hawaii County hasn't been audited...ever.)

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Conflict Within NAACP Hawaii Membership Builds

Some members describe Braggs’ actions towards non-Black NAACP members as “blatant disrespect and verbal abuse, using demeaning and derogatory terms, such as ‘posse members.”

Calvin Griffin, member and radio talk show host, who also notes Braggs also hasn’t answered questions regarding chapter expenditures and receipts, including the non-filing of required yearly Form 990 tax statements for non-profits.

Finally, NAACP members are embarrassed about a scholarship awarded to a student with a 2.0 GPA at the Martin Luther King Jr. dinner event earlier this year. They say that the process surrounding the selection of the recipient was secretive and non-inclusive. Additionally, they have questions on receipts from the Martin Luther King Jr. dinner and the Juneteenth event.

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