Motions Fly in Lawsuit Seeking Removal of Schatz from Office
U.S. should respond aggressively to cyber attack, expert says
Hawaii Congressional Delegation How they Voted December 22, 2014
Honolulu Police Commission under fire
SA: "I do believe that the Commission is properly reviewing the situation, and if facts surface that warrant an investigation, I fully expect the Commission to deal with it appropriately and expediently," Caldwell said in an email to the Honolulu Star-Advertiser.
Caldwell's support came as some raised questions about whether the Police Commission is adequately monitoring the Police Department.
Meda Chesney-Lind, a criminologist who chairs the Women's Studies Program at the University of Hawaii, was troubled that the commission doesn't investigate misconduct, as has been alleged in the mailbox case.
"If they can't, then we need a new police commission," she said. "We need one that's given … meaningful policies and procedures so the public can be assured that there's real accountability."
Chesney-Lind was also concerned that the Police Commission was not addressing complaints about the police's use of force in Honolulu. She said the commission sustained only 3.4 percent of public complaints about police use of force in a four-year period ending in 2012.
"It seems that the Police Commission is completely inadequate to the task of any kind of meaningful oversight of the Police Department," she said.
"You've got a police commission that's sort of toothless and not particularly credible and appears to be largely a cheering squad for the Police Department," she said. "It's not a good situation."
CB: City Response to Police Chief Case? Avert Eyes
read ... Honolulu Police Commission under fire
February Showdown for HECO-Nextera Deal
IM: The Commission must answer two questions: does Nextera have the financial muscle to handle the purchase of HECO and is the proposed buyout in the public interest. The second question is the more interesting one....
During the beginning of the 2015 Legislative session HECO must inform the Public Utilities Commission which motions to intervene they wish to hassle. The Public Utilities Commission must then decide who to allow in.
One argument that HECO uses on a regular basis is to assert that the Consumer Advocate can speak for all consumers which include every intervening entity and therefore no one should be allowed in any docket....
Thus the first set of questions for the Public Utilities Commission will be who to let into the proceedings and which issues are on the plate.
One major Legislative decision this session will be the confirmation vote for a new or reappointed Commissioner on the three-member Public Utilities Commission.
CB: Energy Companies Jockey for Position in Hawaii Natural Gas Rush
read ... February Showdown for HECO-Nextera Deal
DHHL reform good first step
SA: ...it is gratifying to see a step taken to reverse direction with the reform to its process for approving and overseeing what it called "revocable permits."
They comprise about 190 permits, intended as short-term arrangements. Some, however, have been extended, with little oversight or challenge, for 20 to 30 years. This program drew criticism from beneficiaries for the way tenants, many non-Hawaiians among them, got lowered rents.
Last week the Hawaiian Homes Commission approved a basic framework for a significantly overhauled permit process in the month-to-month leases for some of the homesteading agency's land.
That improvement would be accomplished by requiring competitive bids, making the whole program fairer and more transparent. It's a move that should have been obvious long ago, but at least it's being made now, shifting away from the first-come, first-served approach DHHL used for decades. The operation of that program had been generating complaints about favoritism, mismanagement and inconsistent enforcement....
The new governor, David Ige, should ride herd on the process to see that these changes are properly implemented. That's especially important because implementation is likely to be phased over years, so the staff can manage the conversion of the lots to a new permitting regimen.
In the meantime, meetings will be scheduled statewide to draw feedback from the beneficiaries, tenants and the public before final rules can return to the commission for approval. Robust participation at these sessions would help refine the needed reforms....
read ... DHHL reform good first step
Ritte Takes Molokai Down Slippery Slope (Again)
SA: It's troubling that alleged vigilantism is being hailed as heroism on Molokai. As sympathetic as we are to the resource issues at play — Molokai fishermen don't like outsiders plying nearshore waters — the rule of law must apply and must prevail. Boarding someone's boat and taking violent action, which four Molokai fishermen are accused of doing, is not the appropriate response. Moreover, claiming resources solely for one island in an inter-dependent archipelago state is a slippery slope. Molokai benefits from a statewide disbursement of all sorts of resources, and that side of the story should not be overlooked....
read ... Remember, Molokai is still part of Hawaii
Bad Data Tells Us Hawaii Is Very Healthy
CB: Regardless of what a recent study says, we shouldn't be lulled into thinking we are in better shape than we are....
MN: Hawaii should be proud of health ranking, but there’s still work to do
read ... Bad Data
Espero: Constituents Not Clamoring for Legal Marijuana, Dispensaries more Likely
AP: “I do expect that bills will be introduced on decriminalization and legalization, as always,” said Democratic state Sen. Will Espero, chairman of the Public Safety, Intergovernmental and Military Affairs Committee. “But Hawaii’s not ready for legalization. The public is not clamoring for it. My colleagues are not knocking on my door saying, ‘We have to have it. It is now on the radar and it is gaining momentum.’ People are still waiting to see how things are handled in Colorado and Washington and other states.”
He and others said the emphasis on marijuana-related bills this session will be on creating a system that would allow patients to legally acquire marijuana through dispensaries on each island.
read ... Dispensaries
HPD to start enforcing sit-lie law in Chinatown
HNN: ...Missy Owens Mull owns a small business in Chinatown, Owens & Co. She says officers came by her store this week saying they will start enforcing the new law.
"Definitely glad to hear it. I feel like it'll make it a lot easier for business owners. We do sometimes have a tough time with that and we want to keep the sidewalks open for our customers," said Mull.
The mayor says the sit-lie ban has worked miracles in Waikiki. Since it was implemented in September, HPD says more than 70 people have been cited. They face up to a $1,000 fine and 30 days in jail.
Business owners in Chinatown believe they'll have the same results in their area.
“I definitely do think it will help. There are other pockets of downtown that the sidewalks are blocked many hours of the day and I think this will help sort of alleviate those problems and get our customers to move around downtown and patronize more of the businesses," Mull said....
read ... HPD to start enforcing sit-lie law in Chinatown
Sovereignty Activists Push to Recruit More Prisoners
CB: The state should protect the religious practices of Native Hawaiians in prison at home and overseas....
read ... In Prison
Hawaii Atheist Doesn't Fool Michigan
GHT: As a Progressive Democrat, I have a reverential respect for the term "civil rights activist.” Rosa Parks, Nelson Mandela, Martin Luther King Jr., Bobby Kennedy, Susan B. Anthony and Sojourner Truth — all civil rights activists — reside majestically in my internal "Hall of Heroes.” All were willing to abandon personal comfort, even survival, in their efforts to alleviate pervasive civil oppression, misery and injustice. They moved in their respective missions toward trouble in an effort to alleviate it.
Enter Mr. Kahle, who, after leaving idyllic Hawaii, moved to peaceful Norton Shores and became active in Grand Haven affairs. Finding an absence of significant suffering here, Mr. Kahle seems to have found his mission in creating some sort of problem to solve. Hence, his concern with Duncan's Woods fire rings and hours of operation.
Mr. Kahle has every right to continue his search for a mission. While I share his professed constitutional concerns, I find most of his activities petty and a bit annoying. I personally have no trouble tolerating them. I just don't think he has yet earned the honorific title "civil rights activist.” Wouldn't "societal gadfly,” "master game player" or simply "future Festivus producer" be more apt? As the Sunday morning NFL pre-game talking heads are fond of saying, "C'mon man!"
read ... Not a Media Fool