WaPo: Schatz Represents Hawaii's new White Ruling Class
Happy New Year from HMSA: Premium now $1742.50 per Family
Drones may be buzzing Hawaiian skies soon
Star-Adv: The way to help the homeless is to get them off the streets
SA: Many steps need to be taken to curb this alarming problem. Better outreach to those with mental illness represents one prong; expanded treatment opportunities for those with substance-abuse problems is another. Both of these are strategies likely to be introduced in the coming legislative session.
But the real imperative is this: Homeless people need to be provided temporary shelter and care but are most in need of stable, permanent housing. This session, state Sen. Suzanne Chun-Oakland, who oversees much of the state Capitol's social-service agenda, has bills ready for introduction along these lines, including a proposal for $1 million in rental subsidy funds.
Under this bill, working homeless individuals and their families who are ready to manage rental responsibilities would be eligible for a monthly subsidy of up to $300, if they demonstrate they are paying at least 40 percent of their adjusted gross income for rent.
In addition, the city still hopes to raise the money from the sale of its rental properties to help under write its own program of providing basic housing for the most vulnerable among the homeless. City officials must focus their efforts on concluding a deal — the current offer recently was rocked by financial uncertainty — so that this critical part of the mayor's agenda can proceed....
The way to help the homeless is to get them off the streets.
KHON: Residents: Downtown Honolulu turning into tent city
read ... Don’t normalize homelessness
Convict Scores $983K Malpractice Award
SA: The state appeals court has upheld a ruling that the state must pay nearly $1 million to a Halawa prison inmate who claimed that the medical staff failed to properly treat an infection that left him infertile.
Gregory Slingluff had been awarded $983,395 by a state judge after his nonjury trial in 2009.
"I think it's a great ruling," Slingluff's attorney Rich Turbin said....
She ruled that Slingluff wasn't given the proper dose of antibiotics and should have been seen by the medical staff earlier for a condition that caused his scrotum to swell to the size of a melon....
In an appeal in state court, two state-employed doctors contended they should be shielded from the malpractice claims because they held a qualified immunity....
Slingluff was in prison for a drug conviction...
read ... Crime Pays
Hawaii Tourists Revel in Sun, Surf and Semiautomatics
NYT: “We love shooting guns, I love shooting guns,” said Kenji Ozawa, 52, who was visiting from Chiba, Japan. “It’s a very exciting experience.”
Japan has among the most restrictive gun laws in the world, especially compared with those of the United States. Japan’s 1958 Firearms and Swords Control Law prohibits its citizens from owning most firearms; some guns — like shotguns for hunting, air guns and guns for competition — are allowed, but the Japanese still must undergo a series of comprehensive tests, as well as thorough background checks.
So for some Japanese tourists like the Ozawas, an ideal Hawaiian getaway includes sun, surf — and semiautomatics.
“We can’t fire guns in Japan; we are prohibited from having them,” the elder Mr. Ozawa said, before summarizing the Second Amendment’s right to bear arms and adding: “This is the America I know.”...
Jeff Tarumi, the range manager at the Royal Hawaiian Shooting Club, estimates that 90 percent of his customers are foreign, with the majority from Japan. He said that all of the club’s employees are required to speak at least a little Japanese....
“How many people would come to Hawaii and end up going to the gun clubs? Tens of thousands,” said Harvey F. Gerwig, president of the Hawaii Rifle Association. “It’s a huge draw.”
Hawaii is hardly the Wild West of firearms. The state has stricter gun regulations than many of its mainland counterparts, and was given a B+ for its gun laws by the Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence. The gun clubs all provide eye and ear protection, along with instructors trained in gun safety. They will not allow people who have been drinking onto shooting ranges.
But especially compared with Japan, visiting gun clubs here is still relatively easy, and the Japanese are not the only ones adding an hour or two at the shooting range to their vacation itineraries. Tourists from other countries with more stringent gun regulations — like Australia, Canada and New Zealand — can also be found in Waikiki’s gun clubs, where basic packages run as low as $25. A midrange option at the Hawaii Gun Club — a total of five guns with 52 shots — costs about $70....
“I’ve never ever touched a gun in my life before,” Ms. Murphy said, still exhilarated after learning that she was a deft sharpshooter for a novice.
Ms. Parr was equally enthusiastic. “It was a total high,” she said.
The two had shot six guns, and done quite well, though Ms. Murphy had hit slightly more of her targets than Ms. Parr.
Turning to her daughter, Ms. Murphy could not help gloating. “I’m going to rub it in, dear,” she said with a smile.
Mr. Ozawa was similarly complimentary. “We are enjoying America,” he said.
Maui News: Tourists aren’t just visitors
read ... Hawaii Tourists Revel in Sun, Surf and Semiautomatics
Cosmetic companies set eyes on Hawaii
KT: Korean cosmetics firms are branching out into Hawaii, introducing their brands to reach a new market and find additional revenue sources.
They regard Hawaii, the world’s most famous tourist attraction, as a test market to expand their business globally because the island attracts tourists from around the world....
“The Hawaii branch is important for us. It is a test bed to catch travelers and gather information of the U.S. market,” Choi Yu-ri an official at Nature Republic said.
read ... Cosmetics
Drone test sites spell opportunity for companies
ST: Companies once frustrated because they could not get permits to test fly their unmanned aircraft vehicles will now have ranges in Pendleton, Tillamook and on the Warm Springs reservation to aid in developing new technologies.
“There is enormous pent up demand for the opportunity to legally test the systems, because it’s been extremely difficult for manufacturers to do so,” said Ro Bailey, deputy director of the Alaska Center for Unmanned Aircraft Systems Integration at the University of Alaska Fairbanks.
Drone enthusiasts hope to use the aircraft for everything ranging from crop surveys to law enforcement to fighting fires — and to create hundreds of thousands of jobs — though fears of privacy and government surveillance persist.
The University of Alaska — one of six national test sites for unmanned aircraft chosen by the FAA this week, in addition to Nevada, New York, North Dakota, Texas and Virginia — will coordinate drone testing on ranges in Oregon, Hawaii and Alaska.
The new test ranges will most likely be open to almost any unmanned aircraft vehicle, or UAV, business that has the right equipment and meets standards for operator qualifications — from one-man entrepreneurs to larger companies, Bailey said.
read ... Opportunity
New year, new laws against smoking in public places
HNN: Smoking bans took effect on January 1st, making it illegal to have a cigarette at all Honolulu beaches, parks, pools, and athletic facilities -- including tennis courts....
"How can people comply with this?" testified Michael Zehner of the Hawaii Smokers Alliance at the hearing.
"It's making it so difficult, you just won't have compliance," said Zehner.
The council took it another step, passing another bill that also bans smoking within 20 feet of a city bus stop. There are 4,000 on Oahu.
City officials acknowledge, enforcement of the new smoking laws will be difficult, and want voluntary compliance, but if someone is caught by Honolulu Police, that person can be cited. Fines start at $100.
The only exception to the ban, municipal golf courses.
read ... New year, new laws against smoking in public places
Nation of Islam Leaders Vacation on Maui
FC: “Upon leaving the next morning, she presented us with some of the best bananas that one could eat; we were happy and felt invigorated. We continued our journey down into Haiku, Maui, to the Temple of Peace and Healing Spa where we were received by Rev. Kedar and his wife, Shelly St. John. We were treated with advanced state-of-the-art technology and treatments for healing. After the treatments, we had a good night’s sleep in Maui before our departure to Los Angeles.
“Upon our arrival in Los Angeles, our receiving party said, “We looked like pure light,” and we felt like pure light. Thank you again, Mother Tynnetta Muhammad.” Callie Muhammad.
read ... The Final Call
Progressives: N Shore Erosion is Excuse to Seize Oceanfront Property
ILind: Climate scientists agree we are already experiencing measurable sea level rise and, fed by global warming, its pace is likely to increase in the decades ahead.
At the same time, the globalization of Hawaii’s real estate market is attracting wealthy newcomers who are buying up oceanfront properties for new luxury homes.
SA: Sea's pause lets homeowners gird
read ... They want it for themselves
Hawaii hosting wounded warrior athletic competition
SAS: More than 150 people will participate in a series of athletic events at the inaugural Wounded Warrior Pacific Invitational, Jan. 8-10 in Hawaii, according to event sponsors.
Participants include active-duty and retired servicemembers with spinal cord injuries, traumatic brain injuries and other conditions sustained during their service.
The participants will train for three days prior to the kickoff event, a track and field meet at Iolani High School beginning at 8 a.m. Jan. 8....
KGI: Looking ahead for our veterans
read ... Stars and Stripes